CRAFT, KITSCH AND ALL THINGS COOL
From Afghan jewellery to quirky clutches, here’s what you must buy from Gujarati Market, Janpath
Tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Janpath, this colourful lane is dotted with small shops that sell everything from kitschy bags to saris, home linen and gypsy jewellery. Shoppers often popularly call it the Banjara Market. Set up by Gujarati families who have made Delhi their home, this market is a dream come true for those who love all things coloruful and kitschy. Most of the shops here are run by women. One such shopkeeper, Chanda, 32, keeps fixing the pallu of her bright chiffon sari as she talks.“Dilli ki ladkiyan kitni sundar dikhti hain. Itne achche achche sandals pehenti hain. Unka style sabse alag hai (Delhi girls are so pretty. They wear such nice heels. Their style is different),” she says, as she shows us a bright embroidered scarf. “Yeh sab humare gaon me banta hai, Gujarat mein. Meri maa yahan le kar aati hain. Unko pata hai ladkion ko kya pasand hai (These items are made in my village in Gujarat.
My mom gets these here. She knows what girls like),” says her partner Kanchan, 25. Kanchan tells us that the government has promised electricity and they are eagerly waiting for it. The heat often gets to them. The women are very happy that their items are a hit among students. “College girls ko sabse zyada banjara jewellery pasand hai (college girls love banjara jewellery the most),” says a seller.
Foreigners are also a fan of their products. “Angrez sari, jhola aur gift items le kar kar jaate hain. Unke neele-gulabi baal humko samajh nahi aate. Lekin woh Dilli ki ladkion ki tarah bargain nahi karte. (Foreigners buy saris, bags and gift items. We don’t understand why some of them have blue-pink hair. But they don’t bargain like Delhi girls),” says Anuradha, 45.
Here’s what you must buy from these chirpy ladies on your next visit to Gujarati Market, Janpath.
Afghani jewellery is a hot seller here. We picked this oxidised silver lotus earring with red glass embedded in it. It can instantly add a pop of colour to a simple and subtle ensemble. Price: `500 onwards A bright embroidered waist-jacket or koti can instantly pep up your dull kurta. You can also pair it with your western tops or shirts. Price: `250-350 This bazuband and neckpiece with coins and ghunghroos is your perfect pick when you want to put a gypsy spin to your ethnic look. Price: `800 - 1000 This colourful mirror embellished umbrella makes for a quirky showpiece. Price: `500 onwards Tassels are trending this season. You can’t miss this colourful embroidered sling with tassels and pom-poms. Price: `200 A statement clutch can elevate any look. Our pick is one with a car motif made with pearl. You can buy embroidered and mirror work clutches as well. Price: `350-500 Handcrafted runner for your dining table is another must-buy item. Choose from patchwork, or embroidered ones. You can also use them to pep up a Light-weight kantha work saris are perfect for a day function. Our pick is this ombre one. Price: `1000 onwards A handwoven dupatta is a closet staple. You can take your pick from a variety of colours and designs. This one with gold accents on white with red and purple borders is prefect to pair with a plain kurta. Price: `1,500 Indu, 32 and Babita, 26, from Gujarat say they have learnt what Delhi girls like the most. Peppy, cheery colours and things with a vintage feel are a hit with them. STYLING AND INPUTS BY: Osheen Tickoo PHOTO: Kartik Dhamija and Ajay MODELS: Chanya Kapoor, Sadhvi Arora MAKEUP AND HAIRSTYLE: Natasha Arya