Head to Central Market Lajpat Nagar for all your quick fix shopping!
Last month, one of my close friends was traveling to Delhi for a wedding and while unpacking suddenly realised she had left her anarkali salwar’s dupatta back in her hometown! She desperately called me, but none of my dupattas suited the style or color of her dress.
Thats when I remembered Central Market – Lajpat Nagar. The noisy, messy and crowded open-air market in south-delhi is a quick-fix paradise. We rushed to KC Creations on the front road – the best shop for fabrics in all of South Delhi – they have great quality, colors and choice. I know friends who travel for hours from West and North Delhi to buy fabrics at KC Creations.
Rich brocade, benares georgette, crepe silk, rough-silk, deep velvets, shimmery satins, breezy lace, colourful cottons, summery chiffons – you name it and one of KC’s 4 floors would surely have it!
We picked out a white georgette fabric with self-embroidery for Rs. 900 and I also picked up a rich, turquoise and gold brocade fabric for a saree blouse that I wanted to stitch for Rs. 1200.
We then hurried to the small bench at the corner of the same lane where KC was located where 3-5 men take orders to dye cloth in the color of your choice! We gave them the white fabric we had just purchased, showed them the shade of pink that we wanted it to look like, received a slip with Rs 250 written on it and were told to be back in 45 minutes.
So we walked into the tiny lane that sells ribbons, gold and silver rolls of borders, sequence, silk border strips, hooks, buttons, gem-stones to stick on clothes and decided to buy a lovely thick gold border that would be stitched on the dupatta.
We then walked past Ramjisons, Vastra and Hastkala, the other well-known fabric shops as well as lots of shops that were selling semi-stitched and read-made salwars.
At the back-end of the market is the ‘Jewellry Lane’ with a sparkling display of artificial and semi-precious necklaces, earrings and bangles. After a bout of bargaining my friend picked up a full set of 24 pink glass bangles for Rs 800 and matched it with 2 bracelet-sized gold bangles for Rs 300 each!
We also quickly picked up some beauty-essentials: hairclips, hairpins, safety-pins, and nail-polish remover and hurried back to where we had met the fabric-dyer.
He was there with a bag full of freshly dyed cloth and out came our pink fabric-perfectly dyed! We paid the 250 Rs and just turned around to find a tailor sitting right behind us in one of the shop-porches.
After doing the ‘piku’ or stitching up the loose threads hanging on the 4 sides, he simply stitched on the gold border and voila- the gorgeous pink dupatta was ready, now with the self-embroidery clearly visible!
In 1.5 hours – we had got a fabric, dyed it to the color of our choice, found a border, got it stitched and bought bangles and hair clips as well!
Thats what I love about Lajpat Nagar– you can find and do things here that are not possible in any other part of Delhi in such a short span of time!
Lajpat Nagar Central Market Closed on: Monday!
Contributed by “Ananya Madhavan”