Dilli Haat is a treasure trove of some of the best textiles, craftwork and artefacts from all over India. So rather than shop-hopping across the several states of India for them, the Dilli Haat is a one-stop shop. No two experiences at the Dilli Haat are alike as the stalls there are not permanent and are allotted to the craftsmen and artisans for shorter durations. There are small shops with thatched roofs, giving a rustic rural ambience. It’s a kaleidoscope of India’s rich handicrafts and products in vivid textures, vibrant colours, patterns and prints. So diverse and elaborate are the offerings that you will be overwhelmed, unable to decide what to pick and what to skip.
Here is our list of the must-have things to pick at the Dilli Haat:
From earrings, necklaces, nose pins, and anklets, you will be spoilt for choice. Bangles and bracelets to mang tikkas, you will find them all here. The prices range from a few rupees to a couple of thousands. Made with shells, pearls, beads and stones, cords and metalwork, they are trendy among the young and old. While the youngsters prefer the boho patterns in Indo Western fusion styles, the older women swear by the traditional lac bangles, jhumkas and timeless pearls.
Footwear and Bags
You will find an enormous collection of footwear for your dainty feet. The juttis, mojadis and chappals in leather, ajrakh, block print cotton fabric, or leather are other must-haves. Decorated with embroidery, ornamented with bells and shells, they make a perfect companion for traditional wear and look chic with denim and skirts. Here is an interesting titbit about mojadis; there is no left or right one, and they will take the shape of your feet as you use them. Are you looking for tote bags, purses, jholas in patchwork, embroidery or leather as accessories? Then do visit the Dilli Haat.
Whether it is embroidery, block prints or handwoven or painted, each textile is to die for. Be it the bandhani (tie and dye) of Gujarat, phulkari of Punjab, or the chanderis of Madhya Pradesh; you will find endless varieties. Sarees, dupattas, stoles or running fabric, you will get them all here—a word of caution you will run out of space in your wardrobes for sure.
The blue pottery of Jaipur or the terracotta of Bishnupur or the earthen wear from Gujarat is irresistible. You can pick and choose from flower pots, soap dishes, dinner sets, and cook wear.
When you want to do up your home or decorate it for festive occasions like Diwali, head to the Dilli Haat for cushions, curtains, bedsheets, and rajais. The one’s with Sanganer block prints, patchwork, Kutchi embroidery and mirror work are favourites.
At Delhi Haat, you will find the Madhubani and Gond paintings of Madhya Pradesh, the Warli Paintings of Maharashtra, Pattachitra of Orissa and several others. Scenes from everyday life, mythology and epics of Ramayana and Mahabharat are depicted in them, and you can get them in both raw forms or frames.
The cane work from North East is simply exquisite. Baskets, handbags, boxes are fast-moving items. Remember all those Instagram pics you saw with beautiful cane work baskets and wild grass? Well, here is where you will get the baskets for sure.
Rugs and Carpets
Jazz up your flooring with rugs and carpets thrown in. Geometric patterns, floral designs or plain, there is a lot you can experiment with. You will find carpets from Kashmir, rugs from Agra and Himachal and several other regions here.
Handmade Toys and Musical Instruments
The colourful Channapanna wooden toys, Rajasthani puppets, kitchen sets made with tin or wood, or earth are all for grabs. As you walk through the Haat, you will hear the beats of a damru or the strings of ektara or flute tunes. The present generation of kids don’t need electronic gadgets and gizmos for entertainment but these simple non-nonsense toys and musical instruments.
If you don’t want to rush with fabric to the tailor and wrack your brains with the cut and fit, buy readymade garments at the Dillii Haat. Kurtas, suits, skirts, pants you want it they have it. Silk, cotton, linen, woollen, you will get them all.
After all that shopping, if you’re low on energy, do savour some of the regional delicacies that will surely tingle your tastebuds and pep you up. You will also find tarot readers, astrologers and sometimes there are even cultural dance performances at the haat.
Please do pick these products for yourself, and they also make great gifting options. By shopping at Dilli Haat, not only are you getting handmade items, but it’s your way of being ‘vocal for local’ and supporting Indian artisans. They spend hours and months making their labour of love, so please give them their money’s worth and not short change them. Time will soon wipe out some of these art forms, so please do your bit by supporting them. Delhi Haat is every textile and craft lover and shoppers’ landmark that is not to be missed in Delhi.