Quirky Finds in Jaipur, Rajasthan
Jaipur’s streets are brimming with knick-knacks that can brighten up any home – if you know where to look. What’s also special to any shopping expedition in this city is that while these souvenirs are quirky and colourful enough to turn heads, they can also be comfortably integrated in to your home.
PUPPETS AT RAJESH BHAT NAGORI’S
Find all kinds of string kathputli (puppets) at Nagori’s workshop to dress up corners of your home: here a snake charmer, there a village belle, everywhere a king and queen. If you can look past the humble nature of the set, you’ll soon find yourself enthralled by the colourful puppets, and the dexterity with which they can be used to tell stories (if you request a show). Rajesh’s family gets involved in the singing and the accompanying instrument playing; and, if you like what he does, you can also request to enroll in puppet-making classes with him.
TRUNKS AT RAJASTHAN TRUNK COMPANY
When you’re ready to be an adult again, Rajasthan Trunk Company, along this same covered stretch of market, does all manner of storage trunks. That they call themselves the ‘pioneers of the Rajasthan industrial age’ makes you grin as you browse a riot of colourful storage spaces, of varying sizes.
KITES AT ROYAL KITE CENTRE
Visit Patang Market to re-kindle the spirit of adventure that is rife when kites pepper the sky at Makar Sankranti in Jaipur. Available in a range of materials, from paper to cellophane, and in a riot of designs, you will find a kite that suits your mood or your walls.
BLUE POTTERY AT NEERJA
You’ll find things you didn’t know you wanted until you got here. A wee tea set, a penholder, fish-shaped earrings, whimsical pale-blue eggcups, doorknobs and more, crafted of the blue pottery clay so typical of Jaipur.
ALL KINDS OF EVERYTHING IN THE JAIPUR SHOP
If you look a bit deeper than what, at first glance, seems to be a lot of kitsch, you’ll make some intriguing discoveries. Block-printed pouches, printed cotton dresses and bags, and colourful mojdis are just some of the treasures here. It’s not a place for bargain buys, but you’ll find quality products with a story and there’s nothing better, since the sales of some of the crafts go to support charities, like Help in Suffering, an animal aid organisation in Rajasthan.