The drawing of Rangoli designs has different interpretations and significance all across India, where this art form is widely practiced. In the state of Maharastra, it is called Sanskar Bharti. In this state the location of the design is usually on the front door of the house and not on the floor, as generally observed. The logic and belief is that drawing the design on the floor prevents evil spirits from entering the abode and harming the inhabitants.
In the state of Chhattisgarh, Rangoli goes by the name of Chaook. It is usually drawn at the doorstep of any house, building or establishment. The usual tradition is for women to rise very early in the morning and clean the area where the design will be drawn, with water. They then smear cow dung in that area, sprinkle water and then draw the Chaook. The designs are not arbitrary or based entirely on the whims and fancies of the artist. Designs are based on certain systems and set patterns with religious or cultural significance.
In Chhattisgarh the Chaook is usually drawn with a white powder made of rice flour or other similar substances. The color is obtained by adding either gypsum or painted sand to the design. The drawing of the Chaook is considered very sacred and auspicious as it is believed to bring good fortune and luck to the house. Rangoli in Rajasthan is called Mandana. At all the important festivals, these Mandana are painted on the walls of the house. Sometimes the designs can also change according to the season.
In addition to creating Rangolis on floors, doors, and walls, floating Rangolis can be created in a large wooden or brass bowl. These are usually made of a combination of flowers and small candles or tea lights. These are also sometimes floated on a bed of sawdust for greater stability.