There’s a lot that you can miss in Mumbai’s most buzzing suburb if you’re not looking hard enough. Here are some gems in Bandra that have something for every shopper.
Eyes to the Kaleidoscope
These stores might blind you at first with their colourful wares. But once you take a look around, even your regular emo shopper might just be surprised.
MELA: Located at the end of Pali Hill near Yellow Tree Café, Mela is a colourful boutique that stocks ethnic and Boho wear for women. They source their collection from all over India and even have in-house designers. What’s interesting about their stuff is that it’s loud yet funky, like their harem pants and skirts and multi-coloured cord belts with bell embellishments. The clothes have a trippy pattern that looks like a mix of paisley motifs and tie-and-dye. Mela also sells silver jewellery, which you may find expensive. But it’s sourced from Tibet and worth every rupee.
LOOSE ENDS: This store has an eclectic mix of products and brands. Owner Madhumita Goswami believes in stocking useful and uniquely designed products – from painted chai glasses to be used as shot glasses, playing-cards, clothes, jewellery, painted coasters to wrapping paper and boxer shorts. Her store retails brands like Chumbak, Happily Unmarried, Chimp, Poppadum and Fireflies among others. Each item has an element of quirk to it. Whether it’s the colourful PVC coasters, boxer shorts in jars or the ‘Men are dicey’ dice, something is bound to excite your kitsch sensibilities. One loose end could just be your perfect find! All credit cards accepted.
D’KLOSET: This is one of the first clothing stores in Mumbai that is openly gay-friendly. There’s a bright outer-seating area for those who would just like to chill. While the store sells only mens wear, its colourful collection often draws female shoppers as well. Everything, from the clothes to the socks and belts, are arranged according to their colours to look like a rainbow. Despite this, the colours don’t nauseate you but makes you take a second look at everything.
IT’S A FLUKE: But when it comes to their products, their choices are no fluke. Carefully designed and picked out – their tote bags, box clutches, wallets, papier mâché jewellery boxes, pop art wall buttons – everything is painted in bright designs that reminds one of yesteryear Bollywood heroines, peacocks and lions. For a décor and accessories store, their price range is pretty moderate.
These stores are sometimes easily missed or forgotten because of their location but it makes rediscovering them all the more exciting!
SILVER STREAK: Silver Streak will treat you to more than just silver. The store has a collection of jewellery sourced from all over India as well as pieces crafted by the in-house designer. There’s cocktail jewellery, vintage pieces and oxidised silver ornaments. The range is pretty affordable and the unique collection makes it all the more attractive. You can ask the owner, Pooja Chhabria, about what suits you best and she’d be happy to tell you.
SOMETHING SPECIAL: This store, located on Hill Road just before St Peter’s Church, has something special for all those who like to stock up on raw materials and crafts to create jewellery or embellish their clothes. From coloured threads to velvet beads and silver buttons, there are so many DIY accessories that you’re bound to pick up something or the other. For a creative person, this store is a treasure-trove. However, be careful to look all around the store because what the store owner can’t find for you, you might discover in one of their many shelves and drawers. Only cash is accepted.
LE BIJOU: Le Bijou is indeed a jewel. They stock up on a lot of items that are seasonal and retail them throughout the year. Whether it’s legwarmers, knee-warmers, stockings, translucent leggings and knee-socks, you will find a colourful collection right here, and at affordable prices too. The store also does piercings and has a collection of junk jewellery. Cosmetics and innerwear are also available.
[NOTE: I wrote this piece for work. This is one of the pieces that’s close to my heart. Not only are these a few of my favourite shopping haunts in Bandra but also where I’ve found my best purchases. The article first appeared here. http://blah.burrp.com/fashion-style/clothing-accessories/bedazzled-bandras-sh…]