…in advance. This is something I got as a forward and I figured I’d pass it on to all of you who want to play with safe colours. If there are mistakes or typos, please excuse them – haven’t had a chance to sub it!
The legend from which the tradition of playing colours started is full of colours in itself. The story goes that the very colourful god, Lord Krishna was jealous of his soul mate Radha’s fair complexion, since he himself was very dark.
Naughty young Krishna complained to his mother Yashoda about this injustice of nature. To placate the child, doting mother asked Krishna to apply colour on Radha’s face and change her complexion according to his choice.
Playful and mischievous Krishna appreciated the idea and implemented it. The game of applying colours thus gained so much popularity that it became a tradition and later it turned out to be a full fledged festival.
Till date, lovers desired to colour and be coloured by their mates. The application of colours has in a way become an expression of love.A great way to play holi is with colour.but in order to avoid chemicals in the readily available ones in the market,here are some natural substitutes;
1. Green-use henna powder, separately or mixed with flour. Also finely powder the leaves of the Gulmohur for a green colour or crush the tender leaves of the wheat plant to obtain a natural safe green Holi colour.
2. Yellow– Use turmeric powder with double quantity of besan (gram flour) Flowers like), Yellow Chrysanthemums, Black Babul yield different shades of yellow. Dry the petals of these flowers in shade and crush them to obtain a fine powder.
3. Red – Red sandalwood powder or dry red hibiscus flowers in shade and powder to make a lovely red colour. Red colour can also be obtained from juice of tomatoes and carrots. This can be diluted with sufficient quantity of water to remove the stickiness.
4. Blue – The Jacaranda flowers can be dried in the shade and ground to obtain a beautiful blue powder also crush the berries (fruits) of the Indigo plant and add to water for desired colour strength
5. Magenta -Slice or grate one Beet root. Soak in 1 litre of water for a wonderful magenta or boil the peels of 10 – 15 pink onions in half litre of water for an orangish-pink colour. Remove the peels before using to remove the smell.
6. Saffron– Mix a pinch of sandalwood powder in one litre of water for an instant, beautiful and fragrant saffron colour or soak a few stalks of saffron/kesar in 2 tablespoons of water. Leave for few hours and grind to make a fine paste. Dilute with water for desired colour strength.
7. Brown – Kattha ,the one eaten in pan, when mixed with water will give a brownish colour or boil tea or coffee leaves in water. Cool and use.
8.Black – Boil dried fruits of Amla / Indian Gooseberry in an iron vessel and leave overnight. Dilute with water and use. Extract juice of black grapes and dilute with sufficient quantity of water to remove stickiness.
Have a safe and happy holi!