I was daydreaming about Christmas in India—where I would love to be in December or anytime, really—which got me thinking about Christmas and henna in India, like might there be any kind of tradition around Christmas and mehndi? Not so much, it turns out, since Hinduism is the major religion practiced there. But there are plenty of Christians in India, and they love celebrating Christmas as much as anyone else around the world. Some of the Christmas rituals they’ve come up with are so fab that I thought I’d share them here.
—Instead of Christmas trees, Indians decorate mango trees with ornaments, and some people decorate their homes with mango leaves.
I love mangoes! Maybe I’ll add a few under my tree this year just so I can make believe I’m in India!
—Families gather together and walk to midnight mass, where the churches are decorated with red poinsettias and candles. Afterward, everyone returns home to partake in a feast of curry dishes and gift exchanges.
—In Goa State in Western India, people hang huge colorful paper lanterns shaped like stars that float above them as they walk the streets. And people compete to see who will come up with the best nativity scene!
—Santa Claus or “Christmas Baba” in Hindi, delivers gifts to children from a horse and cart!
Don’t you just love that?
And a little closer to home, Vineeta Rajani, an Indian henna artist in Nova Scotia, makes beautiful henna ornaments for the season. What’s a henna ornament? Christmas ornaments decorated in traditional henna patterns. Why? Because even though she’s Hindu, she loves Christmas! (See featured images in this post.)
Here in Hollywood, CA where we make henna kits, come Christmas time, we see a huge uptick in orders because, regardless of where you are in the world, henna tattoos make the perfect gift of body art. So visit us at Earth Henna to see what special holiday discounts await you!