Onam: History and Origin
Before you head over to our section on some of the most amazing Onam designs with flowers, you should better know about the history of Onam and how people began celebrating it.
Onam is also known as Thiruonam and usually celebrated in August or September for 10 days. In 2019 it begins on 1st September 2019 and will last till 13 September 2019. This festival was originated in Kerala and celebrated as a festival to remember the ruling time of King Mahabali.
According to the mythical beliefs, King Mahabali was the king who ruled Kerala in the earlier times and that gods ended his reign because of the jealousy. According to the story, Lord Vishnu came to Earth in form of a dwarf Brahmin and sent Mahabali to some other world. However, according to the last wish of King Mahabali, he is sent to Earth at the time of Onam to visit his land and see his people.
According to some other story, Onam was the day when Kerala was created by Parsurama by throwing his axe in the water. Whatever be the story, Onam is celebrated with great enthusiasm in Kerala.
What is Onam Pookalam?
The floral Rangoli designs made on the occasion of Onam are known as Pookalam. And before you learn about Pookalam designs, you should get to know about them completely. In Kerala, Pookalam is known as rangolis made with flowers. These Pookalam marks the festival of Onam where Poo means Flower and Kalam means artwork.
These are also known as Onam Kolam and seen as an integral part of the Onam celebrations in Kerala. The combination of colours and flowers and the designs created out of them looks absolutely breathtaking. Throughout the ten days of the Onam festival, new Pookalams are made every single day outside the entrance of the home. Usually, a particular flower is dedicated to each day and hence you can see new designs every single day. The most popular flowers used for making Pookalam are Chemparathy, Kakka Poovu, Mukkutti, Thechipoovu, Thumba, Chethi and many more of such type.
15 Beautiful Onam Pookalam Designs to Make
The first one of the Onam designs with flowers that we picked is a very traditional and very authentic Pookalam. You should know that Kathakali is the traditional dance form of Kerala. Taking a page out of this book, we picked this Pookalam design which represents the face of the male Kathakali dancer. You definitely need a lot of green flowers for it to make the face. Rest of the design can be decorated as per your wish.
We always try our best to bring some unconventional options for you, no matter what is it. For this Pookalam section also, we brought this Ganesha themed design for you which looks extremely gorgeous but only when you make it with complete passion.
You basically need a lot of white, orange and yellow flowers for it. More variations in colour would lead to a better design. You need to create minimalistic Ganesha picture in the middle of the design which is not a big deal to copy. Decorate with some diyas to make it look even more amazing.
Simple Marigold Design
If you are looking for some easy Pookalam designs then this simple circular Pookalam is the one for you. It is extremely simple to make where you need to create some concentric circles and fill them up with desired petals.
The pro tip here is to pick dark coloured flowers for creating outlines while light coloured flowers would be great for filling inside the circles. You can put a lamp in the middle for decorations. It is easy to make but still looks beautiful.
This star design Pookalam might look a bit difficult to recreate but if you will proceed step by step, then there won’t be an issue. You need to proceed by creating a square shape in the middle followed by various triangles on its periphery. Just join all the ends of the triangles through an arch, creating a circular shape and you are good to go. Use different coloured flowers to create an illusion of complex geometric design. You can keep the size small for keeping things simple.
Petal Style Design
This petal style Pookalam is a bit different from other designs but looks extremely stunning. Apart from the regular marigold flowers, you will need some lotus flowers for it too. Make sure to include yellow and orange colour a lot in this design.
Start by placing lotus flowers in a circular pattern by keeping their petals pointing outside. Now keep on creating petal shapes through flowers on its periphery. You can increase or decrease the size of the Pookalam as per your desire.
If you are already quite a pro at making Onam designs with flowers then this one is for you. Such large designs are perfect when you have a large entrance to your home. To be true, these designs can be changed as per your wish by keeping the outer periphery in a circle.
You can start by creating a rectangular shape followed by circles. The filling is what is important here and if you notice, there are no outlines either. So, make sure that you go for nice wet chalk outlines here.
This next design here called spiral is a bit complex to make and we would recommend it for someone who has already made Pookalam before. The pattern of overlapping squares followed by circles is a treat for eyes. In fact, the filling of the petals is simply brilliant by creating spiral like shapes between two circles. Go for some nice and strong colors of flowers to create an impactful design. To be true, you do not even need to decorate it as it looks brilliant just the way it is.
3D Effect Design
Well, this 3D style Pookalam design is not for everyone. This is going to take so much of your time so go ahead with it only if you are able to devote so much time to it. There is a unique Chakra like design in the middle which is made out of coinciding petals pointing outwards.
It looks so surreal to watch especially because of the filling in it. There are three outlines of this designs and the filling is simply phenomenal. You will need a lot of patience to create this 3D style design.
Onam Themed Design
Finding out such kind of Onam designs with flowers which can relate well with the festival itself was not an easy job. But we managed to find one such design which not only belongs to the Onam theme, but also quite easy to make too.
You need to proceed with making a circular shape filled with marigold flower petals. Then create different elements in it like Shankh, Diya, Chakra etc. to represent lord Vishnu in it. Use contrasting colors for creating patterns in between.
Unique Whole Flower Design
Here is a very unique Pookalam design which we are pretty sure you haven’t seen before. Unlike other designs, they have used whole flowers for it which looks extremely refreshing and enchanting to look at.
Pink and orange colours are in abundance but you can use whichever ones you like. In fact, some beautiful leaves are also used in this design to create outlines and it looks quite spectacular. We would recommend you to use white flowers to create outlines to bring some contrast and pop in the design.
Peacock Theme Design
This peacock design of the Pookalam is truly something that you would want to make again and again. The beautiful and striking colours of flower petals used for creating the feathers of the peacock is truly mesmerizing to look at.
In fact, it is not even that difficult to make too. You just need to create the peacock design and the rest is simply straight lines reaching the periphery of the circle. In fact, it brings out the vibes of the rising sun which is considered holy. You can use more popping colours instead of dark ones here.
Kerala Scenery Design
If you want to create something relatable then this Kerala scenery design is a perfect choice for it. This design looks as if it is painted with some colours but instead these are flower petals used for this Pookalam design.
While the middle part creates the stunning beachside view of palm trees, mountains and rising sun, the outlines are done beautifully too. The colours used the most are orange, yellow, red and green. It rather looks like a shaded artwork which is too stunning to describe.
Dancing Women Design
Women who are quite experienced at making Pookalam designs with themes can make the design mentioned here. This one is a dancing woman design representing the authentic Kerala Kasavu saree in it which is white and gold in colour.
This is going to be one complex work so go for nice tracing before filling out the design. Proceed from dancing woman pattern to outer periphery to make things simpler for you. You need not to be too clean, just make sure that the pattern comes out nice.
Basic designs are always the best ones to choose to keep things minimal and pretty at the same time. Someone who is making a Pookalam at the last moment, this design is perfect for you. It is made out of simple concentric circle design and all you need is some finishing here.
The flowers used the most are white, lemon yellow and red. It is up to you that which colour goes where. You can also mix 2-3 coloured petals together to create beautiful mix and match designs.
King Mahabali Design
As the origin and story of Onam is all about the reign of King Mahabali then why not to include him in the Pookalam itself? So we picked this design which represents the character of King Mahabali himself. Of course, this is going to be one time-taking process for you to create this design that too with flower petals. You can use some colours too which will create a neater image. Mark the outlines with marigold flowers then.
How to Make Pookalam Easily?
If you are someone who is going to make these floral Rangolis or Pookalam for the first time then you might need some help. We have some tips on how to draw Onam pookalam designs from scratch. These will turn out to be a big help for the beginners and will help them to make some clean designs on their own.
Make a Blueprint on Paper First
Before you decide to make the design on the floor, prepare a blueprint handy on the paper itself. You can decide that which colour of flowers are going to be used and how big the Pookalam is going to be. This will make it much easier for to make the Pookalam on the floor and you won’t get confused at all.
Always Start by Tracing With Wet Chalk
Whether you are making a regular colourful Rangoli or Floral Rangoli like Pookalam, tracing is very important. Always trace the design on the floor with the help of wet chalk. Using wet chalk is really important as you would not want the outlines to get smudged by your hands. Don’t worry, as flowers are going to cover this tracing completely.
The Outlines Come Next
Whether you are making large Onam designs with flowers or the small ones, getting done with the outlines should be your first step. This is quite like making mehndi on your hands where you trace the outlines first and then go for the filling. This makes it a much simpler process.
Start from the Inside When Making Large Designs
The last but definitely an important step to create huge Pookalam design is that you should always proceed from inside and then move towards the outside. Always trace the outlines of inner circles and designs first and then fill them up. Then keep on proceeding towards outer periphery so you do not ruin the design with your hands.
Practice your skills
The pookalam has to be made in time for Onam but you can practice your skills before to ensure a good result. While we all know that you can't expect things to be perfect, when it comes to a festival like Onam and the pookalam occupying a prime place in your home, it brings out the perfectionist in any of us! Select a design quickly and try to not keep changing your mind, then practice crucial steps like making the blueprint and replicating it in chalk on the floor. Once that is done the rest should be fairly simple.