Indian gold jewellery

Ever since I was young, I've seen the Indian women in my family cherish gold, it’s what inspired me to launch Umara. My grandma was a simple lady, but when she'd roll up her sleeves, she was rocking two stacks of bangles made from vibrant yellow Indian gold. 

While continuously adding to her collection, my grandma would also gift the women in my family gold jewellery at every opportunity. So, in this article, I wanted to explore why gold is so significant in Indian culture, particularly for women.

The numbers

According to recent estimates, Indian women own 11% of the world's total gold reserves, equating to around 21,000 tons. That's more than the U.S., Switzerland, and Germany reserves combined. However, Indian women don't own gold bars but jewellery and coins.

From bangles and chains to nose rings, chokers and jhumkas, Indian jewellers have crafted intricate jewellery from yellow gold for centuries.

India's love of gold  

For many of us, gold is considered a luxury. However, in Indian culture, it's almost seen as a necessity. As India has become the world's largest consumer of gold, many aspire to own it in their lifetime.

Gold is many different things; from wearable wealth and a lavish gift to a bold fashion statement, India's love of gold is as ancient as its culture. 

So, how has so much of the world's gold ended up in the possession of Indian women?


My personal gold jewellery collection started when I was very young. From gold bangles to necklaces and pendants, my grandparents and Dad would gift me beautiful Indian gold for birthdays and special occasions.

For many Indian women passing down gold jewellery has historically been one of the only ways Indian women gain some financial independence. Due to the durability of gold, women can keep hold of their jewellery for generations, passing on much more than simply jewellery. 


Indian families have been investing in gold for centuries. For many, buying gold isn't seen as spending money but rather an investment. And they're not wrong; in the past decade, the price of gold has increased by £10 per gram, making it a valuable commodity.

In her book, Girls That Invest, Simran Kaur explains, "In many cultures, including the South Asian culture I grew up with, grandmothers and mothers would collect gold jewellery as a hedge against inflation – a concept investors now incorporate into their stock market investing strategies with gold."

She continued, "They would then pass it down to their daughters when they left their village for marriage. No bank account, no problem. Gold is a valued commodity and one that can easily be liquidated for cash in case of an emergency." 

The ultimate wedding gift 

According to reports, half the gold India purchase yearly is bought for a wedding. There's no wedding like an Indian wedding. They're extravagant, colourful and can last for days. At weddings, gold is considered a symbol of purity while showcasing a couple's wealth and wellbeing.

An Indian bride typically receives gold from her parents. Some families would have been collecting it since the day she was born. While dowries were banned in India in 1961, there is still a cultural expectation that the bride's family should bring something, which is gold. 

For wealthy families, giving gold can become a show of status, and it's not uncommon for brides to receive tens (or hundreds) of thousands of pounds worth of gold for their wedding.

Future-proofing for Indian women 

One of the common themes throughout the reasons why Indian women own so much gold is financial security. That's why I love gold so much, too, as it's an investment I can wear forever and pass down the generations. 

I've owned gold jewellery for as long as I can remember because I grew up with it ingrained in my culture. I've admired and collected Indian gold for years and want to emulate that experience for my customers; that's why I've made it my mission to educate and empower my community to make wise decisions when buying jewellery. 

Invest once, cherish forever.