Thursday, November 16, 2006

Air-cooled Indian fashion


My last day in Bombay, I splashed out. I'd read about a place - an oasis beyond the fish market and out of reach of backpackers, where all the all-that Indian designers kept shops and company turned inwards and away from the street outside. I donned my best version of tip-top - falling well short even with clean hair and nails - and brought my fan-cooled India to the air-cooled world of The Courtyard. Into the midst of groomed ladies I came - they of Taj lunches and Dubai shopping trips.

The Indian equivalent of zooming from the lowest, lower east-side bodega to Bergdorf's main floor, multiplied by the India quotient.

If the ladies looked on me sceptically (that bothered), the shop assistants appeared collectively convinced that I couldn't afford a barrette.

They eyed me, returned to conversations.

Which allowed me wide berth and time to rifle through the mostly wonderful clothes. There were the ornate, bejewelled chiffon confections, but there were also pieces that generally lived in stores that, State-side, I'd also have been intimidated by. To the wonder of the store clerks - possibly in spite of them - I left with 2 shopping bags.

From established Abraham + Thakore, a gray/lilac silk blouse with buttons up the back.
From the newer PRATAP label, a shruggy-jackety thing which may wear me for a while till I get the upper hand.

The not-so-seceret joy of shopping abroad in India, or Thailand, or Sri Lanka or some other nation where the US$ hasn't yet been brought to its knees is that the pieces remain affordable and never-been-in-Banana's front window. For the GAP-splurge-at-Anthroplogie bottom-feeders like myself, you can enjoy a little designer in your life.

C - with one more report on Indian fashion in her then will close topic

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