to protect himself and his wife, he would, therefore, carry a sword
The wedding sword, known as the talwar, is worn by South Asian grooms as part of the attire on their wedding day.
For traditional Sikhs, the wearing of a ‘kirpan’ or ceremonial sword is mandatory as the groom takes on the role of protector of his wife and family.
However, the practice has spread across South Asia and many in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal continue this tradition at weddings.
Popular styles originate from Punjab and Rajasthan for the Rajput look.
Originating from Punjab, one theory that explains the popularity of talwars is that they were commonly carried at weddings when people would commute long distances with camels, horses or carts.
With ceremonies lasting up to five days or more, the Baraat (Groom’s family) would travel to the bride‘s house prior to the wedding with all the jewellery, clothing and gifts.
With modes of transport being basic unlike today, the risk of thieves and robbery was higher.
Roadside robbers or dacoits were known to loot the travelling Baraat. Sometimes they would try to attack the whole family to steal the gold and jewellery.
For the groom to protect himself and his wife, he would, therefore, carry a sword.
Eventually, the carrying of this sword became a wedding tradition and has since been carried down through many generations.
Grooms usually carry the wedding sword in their hand or wear it on the left-hand side of their waist, with a belt to hold it in place.
Notably, most grooms today opt for fake versions of swords, as a symbolic gesture.
With so many styles of talwars now available for grooms to choose from, DESIblitz narrows down some incredible designs of the wedding sword that South Asian grooms can wear on their big day.
The Modest Talwar
This simple style is held by the groom in his hand. It is much smaller than a full wedding sword.
It can either be half or one-quarter of the typical full size.
This style may be small but the intricate detailing on the sword and the handle make this unique and stand out.
Grooms that do not want to accessorise with a long sword can still adorn a sword using this style which does not have to get in the way of ceremonies.
The compact size means the sword fits comfortably within the palm of the groom’s hand.
They come in different colours including gold, silver and red casing.
Regardless of your outfit, this sword is a stylish addition when size does not matter.
We’re labelling this sword as modest but there is no doubt that despite its small size it still has a big impact.
The Choice of Red
Red is a colour often associated with Desi weddings. Brides tend to wear shades of red as a traditional colour.
Therefore, a bright red sword would suit the groom perfectly who are using this talwar to add this colour as a complimentary look.
The rich red colour symbolises love, which goes perfectly for the wedding.
This wedding sword will enhance the groom’s whole outfit.
Detailing on the handle of different colours compliments the bright red very well.
Also, having two shades of red will widen the spectrum of grooms using this sword, as it has more than one colour.
Whilst some grooms might think this style is a bit plain, we love the sheer simplicity of the style.
The bright silver and red speak for themselves without the need for elaborate decoration.
Not to mention, the handle adds the right amount of detail to make sure this beautiful accessory remains simple, yet isn’t overlooked.
Silver and Intrinsic
Silver is a less obtrusive colour for a wedding sword and it can easily mingle with the colours of the groom’s outfit.
The designs for silver swords often be of an intrinsic nature with diamante detailing.
Especially the case, which tends to have silver or coloured encrusted jewellery distributed all around it in a defined pattern.
This wedding sword is an ideal choice for a groom’s outfit which is of a dark colour, such as blue, black, purple and shades of red. If you want the talwar to stand out.
However, it will also work well with a silver or cream outfit worn by the groom.
The gold sword is a popular choice for South Asian grooms as the majority of the sherwani outfits worn feature gold embellishment throughout the attire.
Gold swords have this impeccable look about them.
The casing is where you will see the incredible detail of engravings.
They can be a little heavier to carry than other wedding swords. But it is worth it if the groom wants to portray a totally opulent style.
This colour of talwar is a long time favourite and has been very popular over the decades.
The gold colour will look most fetching with darker outfits worn by grooms.
However, this wedding sword will look just as good with lighter and even gold emborided sherwanis.
The Rajasthani Sword
Rajasthani-inspired wedding swords will definitely provide a look of royalty.
Rajput weddings ooze the style from Rajasthan, a princely state once ruled by Rajputs.
Rajput in Sanskrit means “son of a king” (raja-putra).
So, often the talwars carried by Rajputs can be symbolic of an ideal style for a wedding sword.
Swords are actually used as part of the Rajput wedding ceremony too.
Where the women even use them as part of sword dance rituals.
A cloth is often tied at the top of the handle of the talwar.
The styles can vary with the popular colours of gold and silver casings. However, other colours such as navy blue, black and emerald green are also popular and distinct.
So, looking for stores who can provide a Rajasthani made sword for your wedding could be worth the search.
The handle of a sword can make all the difference if you are looking for a talwar that will stand out for its uniqueness.
It gives the sword a very regal and royal look which is a perfect addition to the groom’s attire.
Many handles are adorned with incredible diamante detailing which is handcrafted.
A popular style of handle is that of using powerful or strong animals such as elephants, leopards and snakes as part of the handle itself.
This adds a ‘masculine’ vigour to the wedding sword adding to the ‘protection’ factor the swords are supposed to represent.
For grooms who are opting to wear a simple attire, you can use this talwar as the main focus, as it has attractive detailing.
Conversely, the extensive detailing of the handle may be too for an outfit which has a similar heavy-detailed look.
These are just a handful of styles and there are many more styles for you to choose from.
Our advice would be to choose your wedding sword after purchasing your sherwani. You can choose what colour compliments your outfit better.
However, if you do want to get the talwar prior to purchasing the outfit, we recommend you pick the safe colour options of gold or silver, which work with the majority of sherwani colours.
Either way, there is nothing like a groom carrying a wedding sword in the persona of a majestic king because after, all he is marrying his queen.