Come 13th January, most states of India will gear up to greet three harvest festivals starting with Lohri and ending with Makar Sankrant and Pongal. After the holiday season festivities, these harvest festivals are a refreshing change to step out in all your ethnic finery. The harvest season is and always has been an important event for agrarian countries such as ours. Regionally, each community that celebrates this festive season shows up in festive finery no less than that of a wedding affair.
The harvest season holds a strong religious significance, it is an important time to thank the gods for a good harvest and to pray for the same for the next year.
The festival is celebrated in Punjab to mark the end of the winter crop season and as a way to thank the Sun god (Surya) for warmer days to come. Some other legends also say that the festival is celebrated as a way to show reverence for fire(Agni) celebration as a folk reverence for fire (Agni) who is also known as the goddess of Lohri.
What to Wear for Lohri celebrations?
Bright colored and embroidered clothes are donned on this day. Women are mostly dressed in pretty patiala salwar suits and adorn themselves with heavy and chunky gold jewelry. They also wear a traditional ‘maang tika’ which adds to the beauty of their ethnic look.
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Makar Sankrant is widely celebrated in Maharashtra and too is dedicated to the sun god Surya. With this festival commences the six-month auspicious period known as Uttarayana. This festive event takes place during the early stages of the Rabi crop and agricultural cycle, where the initial work of farming has been put been done. So it gives the farming community to spend time in each other’s company.
What to Wear for Makar Sankranti celebrations?
Since this festival falls on the last day of winter, it is typically the coolest day of the entire season. Because of this reason women wear black sarees as that helps in absorbing heat from the sun.
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The festival is named after the dish “Pongal”, which is rice boiled in milk with jaggery. The milk is boiled to the point it overflows so as to signify that the harvest too should overflow.
What to wear for Pongal celebrations?
Women dress up in traditional silk sarees which are heavily embellished with zari work. They also wear hold and diamond-cut jewelry and additionally also wear toe and nose rings.