rangoli design

Rangoli, one of the most beautiful and most pleasing art forms of India, is comprised of two words, ‘rang’ meaning ‘color’ and ‘aavalli’ meaning colored creepers’ or ‘row of colors’. Rangoli basically comprises of the art of making designs or patterns on the walls or the floor of the house, using finely ground white powder along with different colors.

rangoli design

Rangoli Design rangoli designis an art form, originating in the Indian subcontinent, in which patterns are created on the floor or the ground using materials such as colored rice, dry flour, colored sand or flower petals. It is usually made during Diwali or Tihar, Onam, Pongal and other Hindu festivals in the Indian subcontinent. Designs are passed from one generation to the next, keeping both the art form and the tradition alive.


rangoli design

There are a number of legends associated with the origin of the Rangoli art in India. The earliest mention in regard to this art form is found in Chitralakshana, the earliest Indian treatise on painting. It is said that the death of a high priest’s son in a particular kingdom led to widespread despair.

rangoli design

The people of that particular kingdom prayed to Lord Brahma, asking Him to bring the boy back to life. Moved by their prayers, Lord Brahma asked the king to paint a portrait of the boy on the floor. Thereafter, He breathed life into the portrait and the boy became alive again. It is believed that this was how the first Rangoli painting got made.

Making of The Rangoli:-

rangoli design

There are two primary ways to make a Rangoli, dry and wet, referring to the materials used to create the outline and (if desired) fill that outline with colour. Using a white material like chalk, sand, paint or flour, the artist marks a centre-point on the ground and cardinal points around it, usually in a square, hexagon or circle depending on region and personal preference.

Motifs from nature (leaves, petals, feathers) and geometric patterns are common. Less common but by no means rare are representational forms (like a peacock, icon or landscape). “Readymade Rangoli” patterns, often as stencils or stickers, are becoming common, making it easier to create detailed or precise designs.

Usually, the colors used for making Rangoli comprises of a coarse grained-powder base into which other colors are mixed. However, one can also make use of colored powder for impressive decorations. It is best to make Rangoli on a coarse base, such as sand, marble dust, saw dust, etc, as it provides a good grip and at the same time, one is able to sprinkle colors with greater control. The colors used are, by and large, very fine pigment powders like gulal or aabir.


The art has many different forms in different states of India. Some popular variations are as follows:

Tamil Nadu – Kolam
Rajasthan – Mandana
Chhattisgarh – Chaookpurna
West Bengal & Maharshtra – Alpana
Bihar – Aripana
Uttar Pradesh – Chowk Pjan
Andhra Pradesh – Muggu
Karnataka – Rangavallie
Kumaon – Alikhthap
Kerala – Kolam
Gujarat – Saathiya

Kolam Design :-

rangoli design

Kolam is the name given to the art of Rangoli in southern parts of the country, mainly the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The Hindus residing in these parts make use of this art form on a large scale. The female members of the house usually draw Kolam designs in front of their homes, with the help of rice powder.

Aripana Design :-

Aripana art form is a variation of the Rangoli, practiced in the Bihar. It usually comprises of line drawings, illustrated on the floor of the house. Aripana patterns are a part of each and every auspicious ceremony in Bihar, be it a puja, a vrata (fast) or a samskara (mundan, vivah, yajnopavita, etc). On the eve of a ceremony, Aripana designs are prepared in the courtyard, on the door front and a number of other places.

Aipan Design :-

rangoli design

Aipan is one of the traditional forms of Rangoli, practiced in the state of Uttarakhand, now Uttaranchal. The art is associated with a great degree of social, cultural as well as religious significance. In Uttarakhand, Aipan designs are mainly drawn at places of worship, along with the main entry door and the front courtyard of the house.

Importance of Rangoli:-

rangoli design

The design of rangoli is very important to channelize its energy level. If you want to underplay it, go for a rounded design. If you want to go for sharp energy levels, go for rangoli designs that have sharper sides. Since the spiritual gurus believe that rangolis are a science of creating energy, the design, symbols, lines and colors, all play an important role.

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