Saukele kigizu

'Saukele kigizu' {literally, saukele is a bride's head-dress, kigizu means to put on). Kazakh people have many traditions and customs. The tradition 'saukele kigizu' plays the important role in them. 'Saukele' is not only the most expensive head-dress in a bride's outfit, it also serves as a symbol of the beginning of a new life. It's a memento of the prior free and easy life of the girl and the beginning of new family life. Saukele kigizu is an especially solemn custom for the bride. The matchmakers (both men and women) are invited to attend this custom. They are strewn with 'shashu'. They give their bata (blessing). 'Baigazy' (gift or paying) for 'saukele' is sometimes pretty considerable. Wearing 'saukele', the bride looks especially gorgeous, magnificent, and inimitable. Everybody wants to see 'saukele' on the bride, and for this viewing some special 'korimdik' is given. The creating of a new family hearth, the bride with her "saukele' on, playing games, laughing — all this is an omen of new life.

Now, a few words about 'saukele'. It's not only a head-dress, but also a work of art. It is embroidered with rabies, pearls, corals, and other precious stones, emphasizing its richness. 'Saukele' is made of expensive velvet or velour, embroidered with fine beads and fringe, its ornaments are composed of various small golden and silver coins, and figure plates. The top of 'saukele' is unchangeably decorated with 'uki' (a fluffy bundle of an eagle-owl's feathers). Its brims are trimmed with furs of mink or fox. The beauty of such a thing captivates your eye and is not only the bride's outfit, but it also intensifies the matchmakers' authority.

The girl who wasn't wooed according to the custom will not be dressed in 'saukele'.


Thus was called a traditional song, which the girl sang during 'kyz tanysu', when she visited her relatives' places with her zhenge. This song sings about happy years spent in home sweet home, which have unnoticeably gone bye, about her beloved parents, how she was cherished and adored, about her regret because the time to leave her home has come, and also a request to her relatives not to forget her, to visit Her from time to time. It's a beautiful and touching song. Unfortunately, nowadays this custom is being gradually forgotten.