Girdles have been in use in India for a very long time, since possibly the early chalcolithic age.
The kanci aka girdle, is often a broad golden belt used to secure the sari to the waist, to which are often added medallions, loops, tassels and bells. In early sculptures there are often multiple layers. As also in this pic of the actress Simi.
Examples of simple belts/girdles used to secure the sari at the waist below. The more common regional terms for the kanci are kayabandh/kamar bandh in the north, oddiyanam in Tamil Nadu. where it is commonly used in dance costumes, mekhala etc.
Pics: 1. A painting of a dancer by MV Dhurandhar 2) A Lala Deen Dayal photograph. 3. TP Rajalakshmi [X] 4) Balasaraswati photographed by Marilyn Silverstone.
Reminds me of the “oddiyanam” we used to wear for dance….very becoming on those slender damsels in the post!
Yes its is the oddiyanam:)