Diwali– the most prestigious festival in India; it is radiant, it is bright and yes, it is colorful. It brings back the colors of life which were lost somewhere in daily chores of life. There are a several rituals and customs people follow in Diwali. Out of them, one of the commonly followed rituals is making a Rangoli at the entrance of the house.
According to Indian beliefs, Diwali is the phase when Goddess Lakshmi bestows her blessings upon the house. So a Rangoli at the entrance is a brilliant way to welcome Goddess Lakshmi into the house. Usually rangoli is made a few days before Lakshmi Pooja and it is maintained and taken care of from being deteriorated.
Coming to Rangoli designs, bright colors are chosen. The pattern also includes use of colored rice or colorful petals. Designs vary from place to place and so does the name. Rangoli has different names in different provinces of India. Certain auspicious symbols are used for rangoli decoration. This tradition of using symbols has been passed from generation to generation.
Rangolis can be made using precise dot to dot designs or free handed. There are several rangoli books available in the market that put forth great designs to be made in simple ways. Besides, there are readymade rangoli stickers available in the market. But it is always preferable to choose the traditional ones.
First, you need to create a basic structure. For that, you must place dots at equal distances. Then, connect the dots as per the design you have chosen. The dots and borders are made using the thicker white powder. Once the borders are made, you need to fill in colors. As mentioned earlier, colored rice and also colorful flower petals are used. But most commonly, we see the use of colored powders. These colored powders are mixed with the thicker white powder to give it a better texture.
Once this is done, the rangoli is given a finishing touch. All the spilled out colors are dusted away and the border is made thicker. This tradition is followed by women, and rarely do the men of the house contribute in making the rangoli.