Onam reflects the tradition, culture and rituals of the people of the entire state of Kerala. This festival is celebrated with great pomp and show in Kerala, which is a true delight to the eyes, especially if you're visiting the state during this time.
People from all over the world come to Kerala during Onam to witness the joy and beauty of this festival. Onam is known to wait for an important visitor, King Mahabali. It is believed as per mythology that when he ruled over Kerala, everyone was happy, wealthy and prosperous.
And every year, people here believe their king returns during the Onam time to see how his subjects are flourishing.
There are a number of ways how Onam is celebrated in Kerala. This includes the onasadya, the pookalam, the snake boat race, the elephant procession and many other attractions. These are what draws in thousands of tourists to be a part of the spectacular harvest festival.
Rangoli Or Pookalam Of Kerala
The women of Kerala make intricate designs out of flowers and lay it on the floor. This tradition of decorating the Pookalam is very famous in Kerala and is considered to be one of the most important rituals of every household during the harvest festival.
The Pookalam is also known as Rangoli in Kerala. They make use of flowers to make this type of rangoli. Pookalam is made up of two words. 'Poov' means flowers and 'Kalam' means the colour sketches. It is considered to be very lucky to prepare the Pookalam during the celebrations of the harvest festival.
Various Types Of Rangoli Designs
Since no coloured powder can be used, the women use different kinds of flowers to complete the rangoli. This flower rangoli is also known as the 'Aththa-Poo' during the Onam celebrations. It is believed that King Mahabali visits almost every household when he comes to visit all of his subjects annually in Kerala. This is why the adolescent girls and the women prepare the elaborate rangoli designs on their door step and welcome their King.
Circular designs can be created with flowers that are pink, yellow and purple. Within the circle, different colours of flowers like white or red can be used to make a star. This gives a unique design to the Pookalam and makes it look very beautiful.
Most women prefer two contrast colours of marigold, as this flower comes in two beautiful contrasting colours orange and yellow. They create an abstract design and repeat the orange and yellow colours. These flowers are separated by pink flowers like the lotus.
The Kathakali design
Most women prefer doing the Kathakali design right in the center of the rangoli. A red coloured flower can be used as the base, and the Kathakali design can be decorated with the yellow flowers. The borders can be done beautifully in horizontal patterns with orange and yellow petals.
The three-dimensional design
To make the three-dimensional Pookalam design, one needs to be very skilled and dedicated. Different coloured flowers are used in order to give a beautiful effect to the rangoli. These colours make the Pookalam stand out and give a three-dimensional effect, which is very eye catching.
The different rangoli designs can be done best by the women who are skilled and have a lot of patience. There are many other rangoli designs, which include the geometric patterns or the spiral patterns.