Diwali is and has always been a festival of gifts. Once again, it is the time of the year when you pamper yourself and your loved ones with festive gifts as festivities are all about sharing your joys and happiness.
Diwali is one of these occasions when you would like to send gifts to your loved ones. But with the COVID-19 pandemic far from being over, and most of us working from home, you could cheer your family and friends with some of these well-thought gifts from Northeast India.
From beautiful bamboo products to exquisite textiles, all are sustainably produced by local artisans. This Diwali 2020, check 8 souvenirs from Northeast India to gift your loved ones
Biodegradable diyas and idols
In Diwali, lightning diyas holds a great spiritual value. However, diyas can cause environmental problems and increase pollution levels. Replace ordinary diyas with biodegradable diyas this pandemic Diwali and spread the love with zero toxic residues. You can easily avail these eco-friendly diyas in the market at a similar price and contribute to a pollution-free Diwali. Tripura chief minister Biplab Kumar Deb recently had launched eco-friendly diyas made of bamboo artisans. They also launched candles in bamboo shells as they are totally eco-friendly. Also, prefer to buy biodegradable idols for the coming pujas.
Assamese Japi with Gamosa
Jaapi is a conical-shaped hat with a wide brim found in Assam. It is woven out of cane and tokou (palm) leaves with colourful embellishments added on top. Jaapi also makes for a very interesting and attractive wall decor. In the social communities and cultural aspects of Assam, it is a traditional icon and possession.
Assamese Japi with Gamosa is an excellent souvenir to give to your loved ones this Diwali as a token of love as well as respect.
Immune boosting herbal and organic tea packs
Shower love and care to your dear ones and gift them a pack of immune-boosting herbal tea packs such as Ceylon tea, green tea, oolong tea, tulsi tea, black tea and cinnamon tea. These teas are packed with polyphenols and flavonoids and have strong anti-viral potential. The COVID-19 situation demands immune-boosting herbal teas when it comes to improving the immunity, which is vital during the pandemic.
Sikkim is the only fully organic state in India, which is why produce from here is highly sought after. One of the best souvenirs that you can buy from here is organic tea. The small Himalayan state’s only tea estate is in Temi. Apart from tea, you can also buy large cardamom, which is another popular souvenir from the state.
Mekhela Chador- Assam Silk
Assam silk (Pat and Muga and Eri silk) are the silk that is used for making the famous Mekhla chador and are usually decorated with small patterns called buta along with different garments in Assam. Mekhela chador is a traditional dress worn by women in Assam. While it looks similar to a saree, the wrap-around skirt, blouse and a chador or shawl that is draped across a shoulder is a superb souvenir from Assam, which is one of the exquisite gifting items from the region. Along with the Mekhla chador, many people may feel like to wear a designer mask matching with their attire. Gift it to the ladies of your house as it is best to gift your loved ones, keeping both the fashion and health in your mind.
Naga shawl & Naga Jewellery
This Diwali gift your loved ones, the best ethnic and traditional souvenirs from Northeast, Naga shawl & Naga Jewellery. The Naga shawl is recognised by its red, black and white colours and distinctive tribal prints. Each tribe has its own patterns with simple, clean lines, stripes, squares and bands being the most traditional design. These are waved at home by the females using wool. One of the common features of the Naga shawl is that three pieces are woven separately and stitched together. Make sure you buy a hand-woven shawl, which although are more expensive, but of much better quality.
Just like every other tribe across the world, even the Naga tribes are known to make their own beaded jewellery sometimes with nails and horns as embellishments too. Beaded belts, crowns and even big junk beads and rhinestone jewellery can be great gift ideas.
Since the entire Northeast India has thriving bamboo forests and cultivation going on in large number, the bamboo baskets and other decorative lamps, vase and decorative items and artifacts are best Northeast souvenirs to gift your loved ones. In the state of Meghalaya, the Garo tribe is famous for weaving beautiful baskets known as Meghum Khoks, which make for an attractive and exclusive souvenir.
Bell metal crafts
The bell metal utensil is a native of Sarthebari, Bajali in Assam and fetches a good price in the market too. Sarthebari is known for its bell metal production and many items like plates, pots, urns and basins made from this alloy metal or bell metal. It is a tradition to keep bell material serving plates and bowls in every household of Assam and can be excellent souvenir.
Nungbi, Longpi Hamlei pottery of Manipur
Unlike conventional pottery using potter’s wheel, this one is made by manually mixing serpentinite stone and brown clay of Nungbi village. The clay is then used for making pots and cups, which are polished and sun-dried.
Longpi is a small village in the state of Manipur renowned since ancient times for its expertise in crafting stone pottery called Longpi Hamlei. The unique thing about this art is that the artisans do not make use of a potter’s wheel but shape each and every pot by hand with the aid of moulds and tools. The raw materials used are ground black serpentinite stone and a special kind of brown clay, which the locals claim is available only in the village of Longpi.
These are some rare items and best Northeast souvenirs available only in Manipur.
Now that you have known most of the things, which can be gifted as souvenirs or memorabilia, what are you going to gift your loved ones this Diwali?
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