"Kolam" India Local Custom Tip by FruitLover

India Local Customs: 347 reviews and 396 photos

  Kolam in Kanchipuram
by FruitLover
 
  • Kolam in Kanchipuram - India
      Kolam in Kanchipuram
    by FruitLover
  • Kolam in Tiruvannamalai - India
      Kolam in Tiruvannamalai
    by FruitLover
 

Every morning, once the housework is done, the women draw patterns, called KOLAMS, on the still-moist soil in front of their doors. With white powder, either rice flour or lime powder, they first lay out a regular pattern of dots. Then, by letting the powder run smoothly and steadily between their thumb and forefinger, they compose a continuous line which turns and twists around the initial dots, following a pattern which they know by heart.

Each type of design has a name and a symbolic meaning. These KOLAMS, which are wiped out during the day by the frequent footsteps which cross them, are remade each morning. They vary from day to day, being large and magnificent on festival days.

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  • Updated Dec 27, 2005
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