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Let's Talk Turbans :)

Discussion in 'Sikh Youth' started by spnadmin, Sep 23, 2009.

  1. spnadmin

    spnadmin United States
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    Jun 17, 2004
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    The Art of Tying a Turban
    or, 52 Ways to Tie a Larh


    Wearing a Puggri ("Puggh") is nothing if it isn't an art form.
    Everyday, millions of people get up earlier than everyone else to put on their puggh (not to mention groom their dhaaris - beards). For the past three hundred odd years, the puggri has adapted and changed to fit the style of the day as well as to meet many practical needs of Sardars.
    For the young Sikh boy or girl considering what style they want to adopt, there are now a plethora of choices available.

    Personally, I find the choice of which puggh-style to wear a very intimate and personal one.

    Most Sikhs wear their puggh every day of their life and over time it becomes a part of them. Your friends, family and colleagues start to identify you with your puggh style and it becomes inextricably part of your personality; as much as your height, weight and looks.

    To help those young Sikhs who are trying to figure out what is right for them or even for someone who has just lost their way, I have made a comprehensive list of puggri styles. Like anything else, the list is probably not complete; I'm sure there is someone out there with a puggh style that the world hasn't seen yet.

    We can't wait to see it either.

    Visor - Livin' south of the equator? Can't stand the sun? Play a lot of golf?
    If you answered yes to any of these questions, you may want to go with the Visor Puggh.

    The Visor is usually a double puggh that is angled towards the ground to give you some shade. While not the most stylish choice, it provides a much needed service for those who need it.

    Business - This is one of the most common puggh styles, especially among those in business or finance. Usually a single, the Business Puggh is small, fairly neat and simple. Good enough to make someone look respectable, but small enough not to draw too much attention to. It's usually just enough cloth to cover the joora (hair top-knot) and is generally black or navy blue.

    Nihang - no description necessary.

    Shark Fin - Another practical puggh, the Shark Fin can be identified by a sharp point at the top (think Empire State Building). For those living in rough areas, the 'Fin can double as a weapon. This style is not recommended for beginners.

    Khalistani - We have all seen this one before. A Khanda in the middle, maybe some kirpans in the outlying regions, usually blue and orange or blue and yellow.

    It can most aptly be characterized as a practical Nihang Pugh. Like the Nihang, this is more than just a puggh, it is a lifestyle choice.

    Ear Muffs - This is the puggh that covers up the whole ear. While not a terribly popular style these days, some people find it oddly comfortable. It is, for obvious reasons, more popular in the wintertime.

    Jatt - (meaning "peasant," not a caste. Remember, we are Sikhs, not desis, for heaven's sake!). a.k.a. The Pleasant Peasant. Sometimes gets confused with the Visor Puggh, but it is its own style completely. For a while, it was the most common puggh and probably one of the original styles. It fell off in popularity during the nineties when teenagers were experimenting with "The Pretty Boy," "Business," and "The Khalistani."
    To the delight of many, the Jatt is making a strong comeback in recent years.

    The Lasso, a.k.a. The Cowboy, a.k.a. The Quickie - Have you ever seen a cowboy lasso a calf and quickly tie it up? Imagine that, but the cow is your head and you are the cowboy. This puggh is one that is put together in under 30 seconds.

    Starch - Mainly seen in the older crowd, this is another puggh of convenience. In the same way that we starch our shirts, people starch their pugghs. Over time, the starch sets in and it starts to form a hat-like structure.

    The Two-Face - As I said earlier, tying a puggh is an art form, especially if you're intent on getting clean larhs (layers). Getting the right side to look nice can be particularly tricky. This leaves the lazy ones having one side neat and the other ... well, not so neat.

    The Cover Up - The Cover Up was designed as a solution for those suffering from a Two-Face Puggh. The Cover Up is when you cover one side of your puggh with one huge sheet of a larh in order to avoid having one clean side and one messy side. This is a clever way to give the illusion of neatness.

    The Pretty Boy - We all know this one. There is always that guy who spends every waking moment of his life in front of a mirror perfecting his puggh. Perfect shape, extremely neat, no lint and probably color-coordinated. In the time it takes for him to do his puggh, I have vacuumed the floors, done my taxes and solved the world hunger crisis.

    Female Puggh - Not to be confused with a keski, the puggh that women most commonly wear is distinct. While it is the shape of a keski, it is usually thicker and neater and, in the case of "American" Sikhs, almost always white. Also, this puggh is most commonly used with women who have good bone structure.

    Big Boi - Not to be confused with the Nihang Puggh, the Big Boi is a well tied puggh on par with The Pretty Boy, but double the size.
    What can I say ... some people just think bigger is better. Let's just hope they're not over-compensating for something.

    African Style - Not sure what the origins of this puggh are, but it is very distinct from the other styles above. The African Puggh starts by folding the puggh the same way you would fold a blanket (flat), as opposed to doing a traditional pooni (diagonal stretch). This gives a very slim, layered effect (think inverted professional bicycle helmet).

    Joora Pugh, a.k.a. The Sunrise - Have you ever watched the sun rise? Well, imagine that the horizon is your puggh and your joora is the sun. With most people, you just see the horizon, but with this puggh you see the whole sun.

    Keski - While the keski has gotten a bad (w)rap these days (google image search: political activist), it's actually quite a stylish puggh and does wonders for your ears. It's also great for sports and outdoor activities. When the tensions in the Middle East ease up a bit, I'm sure we will see a re-emergence of the Keski.

    The Bicky - Well, this isn't really a style per se, but more of a color choice. We're talking polka dots, stripes, various patterns and sometimes glitter. These aren't for the faint of heart, but they do make a statement. Named after the famous "turban guy" in Hollywood.
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  3. OP

    spnadmin United States
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    The Turban Clinicby THE TIMES OF INDIA

    sikhchic.com | The Art and Culture of the Diaspora | The Turban Clinic

    There are salons to advise one about hairstyles.

    But what about salons on how to wear turbans? And to keep up with the latest trends?

    A unique salon in Amritsar, Punjab, has the answer to this. Called The Turban Clinic, it advises Sikh youth on how to tie the perfect turban and what style will suit them.

    The clinic has devised as many as forty ways of tying the turban. Patrons can pick the style that suits them the best, according to facial structure, height and nature of work.

    Advice is also given on which colours to use, depending on complexion. A specially-designed software, Smart Turban 1.0, is used for this. The customer's photo is downloaded into a computer and various turban styles superimposed on the image, and selected.

    And, if you want to learn the art of tying a turban, take the help of Turban Tutor 2.0.

    The salon is the brainwave of Amritsar-based lawyer, Jaswinder Singh, to promote turban-wearing among Sikh youth. Many now prefer to shear their locks in order to look "trendy". Also, those who aren't permitted to do so, wear caps to escape the "tedious" exercise of tying turbans. Singh says his service is free.

    The venture has already become a success, he claims, as young Sikhs throng the place in the evening to take lessons.
    "We try and evolve new styles for everyone, because the traditional three styles of tying turban of Majha, Malwa and Doaba regions, now look archaic and conservative", he says.

    Officials at the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee, the supreme religious body of Sikhs, feel that lately, the turban has come under attack from various quarters. France has banned religious headgear, including turbans, in public schools.

    In fact, post-9/11, many turbaned Sikhs were mistaken for Muslims and attacked. This has led to fear of lowered esteem among turban users. Also, there is a perception that a majority of girls prefer clean-shaven Sikhs. So, Sikh bodies are taking various steps to restore the pride of place turbans have always occupied.

    Jaswinder Singh explained: "The basic purpose of the clinic is to stop the youth from shearing their hair, as this goes against the basic tenets of Sikhism. This is one of the most serious challenges confronting Sikhism today".

    But, he adds that the youth can't be entirely blamed. "Take a glamour industry like films. A young Sikh man would have trouble finding a role in mainstream films as a hero, unless he takes off his turban, cuts his hair and shaves his face. Those who wear turbans in films are often used to provide comic relief. They are shown as provincial, uneducated and amusing. This has bruised the feelings of the community".

    Jaswinder Singh, who is running an organisation called Akal Purakh Di Fauj ("The Army of the Timeless One") to work for Sikh causes, says, "The turban is an integral part of the complete look of a Sikh. We're just trying to inspire Sikhs to look smart, without relinquishing their turbans. We want them to realize that their turbans only add to their looks".


    African Style


    Kenyan style
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