It is that time of the year; the weather is changing, winter is tiptoeing towards us and the festive season is at our doorstep.
Festive season and it is Diwali that brings a smile to our faces. Covid managed to ruin it all for us last year, but things are a tad better this year. We all want to move on ( yes, with all precautions in place ) and celebrate our festivals with the usual spirit.
So if Diwali is here, can Diwali shopping be far ?? No, definitely not.
Having lived in Delhi practically all my life, I have identified some places where one can find everything for Diwali. These are places where you can shop till you drop! And what’s more, some of these also give you time and place to eat and chill with your friends.
So here goes..
A store that speaks style, elegance and class. If you are looking for that exclusive runner, cushion, tableware, brass objects for your puja room, a piece of furniture, then this is the place for you. With a super-efficient, super knowledgeable, and helpful staff, the shopping experience at Ishatavam is always delightful. Located on M.G. Road, as you go towards Gurgaon, you cannot miss the store. But once you enter the store, the world will start missing you!
The store is a treasure house of innovative products sourced from Indian artisans and craftsmen. And what adds the icing to the cake is their packaging; classy, traditional and super elegant.
I love shopping here during Diwali and even at other times to pick up that exquisite piece of Indianess.
You like ethnic, you like traditional, then there is no way that you don’t know about FabIndia. A store located in several cities across the country where you can get a mindboggling variety of things for your home and yourself. So whether you want clothes, jewellery, crockery, furniture, bedspreads, lamps, gift items, you can get it all under one roof.
And now they even have a café that allows you to take a breather between hunting for what you want. Named ‘Fab Cafe,’ it combines gourmet dining with regionally inspired food. Going with the ethos of Fab India, the cafe inspires you to ‘Eat well, feel good”.
One of my all-time, all year shopping haunts. It could be yours too!!
A store that will floor you with its collection of beautiful objects for the house. They have select, exclusive pieces which you have to grab when you see them as they may not be having too many pieces of the same item. If there is that brass urli, then they also have that tea -set letting you take your pick.
Indoors is a small, cute place located in Vasant Kunj. The staff is courteous, helpful and non-intrusive. You can browse to your heart’s content which isn’t too difficult to do considering the exclusiveness of their collection. You can take your pick from diyas, candles, brass objects, wall hangings, lamps and many other gift items. It isn’t too big a place, and so you don’t get too overwhelmed.
I remember falling in love with the place the first time I saw it. I have been a patron for the last fifteen years though now, having moved out of the area, I cannot visit it as often.
If you like the outdoors, especially in the evenings and when the weather in Delhi is beginning to change, then this is the place for you. You can get an unbelievable variety of ethnic beauties from clothes to footwear to home décor, all straight from the artisans. It is an open-air craft bazaar and food plaza, a little slice of India.
The advantage is that you get what you want from the creator in most cases and at reasonable prices. You may have to haggle, though !!
But be ready to walk and so dress comfortably to take on Dilli Haat in its full glory. And if you get tired, you can find places to sit and eat. Eateries from different parts of the country are there for you to sample and enjoy.
And it is not only Diwali time, but you can visit Dilli Haat all through the year.
So if you are looking for shawls, stoles, juttis, pickles, jams, sarees, dupattas, bags, custom jewellery, bangles, planters, momos, masala chai, then this is the place for you.
So there is every reason to go and enjoy Dilli Haat.
Blind School Mela
A much-awaited mela amongst the various melas that spring up in the city close to Diwali. Of course, Covid has impacted this, and for now, only the online option is available.
But as far as I can remember, this has been a go-to place for most Delhi people for their Diwali shopping. There is lots to choose from diyas, floating candles, lights, urlis, clothes, jewellery, and homeware. And then there is the wide range of gift bags for every conceivable item of gifting that one can imagine. In fact, I have always got my year-long supply of gift bags from here. Their paper products are not to be missed.
And when you get tired of all the shopping, the food stalls with lip-smacking Indian street food are right in the middle.
You get to shop, eat, and meet; a great hangout with your friends. It has been my destination for the last many years.
Select City Diwali Bazaar
There is something about a Diwali Mela, a Diwali bazaar that a store can never capture. And that is the spirit of the festival; the stalls, the lights, the people, the shopping options and that festive feel.
Select City Diwali Bazaar is another place just for your Diwali shopping. Though relatively new in the space, it has picked up in recent years and is one of the much-awaited bazaars the city offers. It is usually a four-day affair where you can shop till you drop. Colourful stalls with a wide array of ethnic wear, food and entertainment are there for you to get soaked in. The evenings are the best when the stalls are lit, and there is fun and laughter all around you.
So yes, if you like the Select City Walk for its trendy, classy stores, then you will enjoy the mela for pretty much the same reasons.
I have been visiting this for the last few years.
Sundar Nagar Diwali Mela
One of the Diwali melas that I have been visiting since I was a child. It is a mela in the true sense of the word. Apart from the shopping and the eating, this mela boasts of the long-forgotten and rarely seen joys like the Ferris wheel, the chuski wala, magic show and even a dance stage.
So yes, like the Blind School, you get a lot of variety for your Diwali shopping, but here you get to partake of these other joys as well.
These little joys, which remain part of our memories for the rest of the year, come alive at this time, thanks to this mela.
So these are a few of my favourite shopping joints for Diwali!
Do check them out!