Retail therapy: Five eclectic pop-ups come to Chennai
From sustainable brands to artisanal finds and festive edits, five pop-ups come to Chennai with eclectic curated options
A shout out to all the shopaholics out there: wear your comfortable shoes, don that mask and stay hydrated — the scene just got bigger! With five uniquely curated pop-ups coming up in the city in the next fortnight, it deserves a fair heads up, to ensure you miss nothing. From luxe garment brands, sustainable craft and eclectic accessories from across the country to local favourites and traditional artisanal finds — we have you covered for your festive shopping and for conscious buying, this season.
By Hand From The Heart
The 30th edition of By Hand From the Heart is back after more than a year and we are indeed excited. A carefully curated makers market includes 30 participants from across India. “There are different
workshops, live counselling sessions and shopping experiences,” says Deepa Sekar, the curator of the pop-up. Expect traditional crafts, art and foods to be showcased, even as they celebrate brands that upcycle. Their promos have recently shown an interesting musical instrument
(a thumb piano) brought down from Mumbai called the zenzula that we are eager to try our hand at. Look out for Oh Scrap Madras, traditional South Indian sweets by Subasri Reddy Farms, food workshops by Chef Vijhay Ganesh M and a coffee workshop. “It’s not always about
consumption but about learning and the food workshop is focused on why we should go back to cooking. It’s an interesting opportunity for people of Chennai to learn to appreciate the way coffee is crafted,” insists Deepa.
September 25, from 10 am to 8 pm,
at Hanu Reddy Residences, Poes Garden.
We caught up with Shweta Mahtani, last year in October, when she had founded her online market place, the Elemental Stories, “a space for all things sustainable.” Now she goes offline and brings us an interesting pop-up Beyond Sustainable that boasts of about 25 brands that are chic and big on championing for the planet. “The idea is to create a sustainable vintage market vibe at Folly. We are showcasing different categories emphasising on sustainable living and showcasing the many amazing options that are available pan India — that are chic, sustainable and comfortable. We will be covering various categories from fashion, skincare, accessories, home décor and kids products,” Shweta tells us. Some of the brands that are coming to Chennai for the first time including Ahmev India (Delhi) bringing us some festive wear, while The Real B is showcasing sustainable lounge wear. Doodlage has upcycled and recycled wardrobe essentials. Among their self-care brands, Asa Beauty from Mumbai has vegan cosmetics while Amazing Grey is all about
vegan personal hair care brand that celebrates age. For some bling, Dhwani Bansal accessories has recycled brass and 22 k gold plated offerings. Our eyes are also on Recharkha Bags and their upcycled waste plastic bags handwoven by tribal women.
September 25, from 11 am to 8 pm, at The Folly at Amethyst.
Wild Milan, A Monsoon Carnival
A philanthropic initiative that primarily features women entrepreneurs and aims to help small-scale businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr Arrabbe alias Eshitha’s first pop-up Wild Milan promises a mind-blowing range of products in art, handicrafts, skincare and hair care, jewellery, accessories, savouries and pastries, apparel and more. A doctor by profession and founder of skincare brand Body Glow, Eshitha understood the hardships that small and home-grown businesses faced during the COVID-19 pandemic, having been an entrepreneur herself. “The ultimate aim was that Wild Milan had to promote small-scale businesses. I figured other women, who were doing home businesses, would have been affected too. So, as my first initiative, I wanted my first pop-up to be a non-profit that would benefit all women entrepreneurs.” Look forward to Chennai-based brands like RISTA (Rural Indian Social Traditional Artifacts) that deals with handicrafts, Cookie Magic by Anish (pastries), Au Linen (leisure wear), House of Akoor (saris with organic dyes) and Vandy’s Snacks (desserts).
September 18 and 19.10 am to 8 pm. At Fika.
Vimonisha Festive Edition
Hardly a month after her previous event, Monisha Gidwani’s Vimonisha is back with their Festive Edition Pop-Up. The edition promises to bring back a few of the property’s favourites including ethnic, lounge and casual wear from Alankrit by Manju Jalota (Lucknow), ANA by Archana Reddy (Bengaluru), Kaveri (Chennai) and Turmerik (Kochi). You can also look forward to several new casual wear labels including Style Junkiie (Mumbai) and Shurtz N Skurtz (Jaipur). Look forward to two days of some of the most kitsch prêt, couture, fine jewellery, accessories, home décor, art, and wedding essentials brands and a book launch by Bhavna Arya on day one. There’s also Nidhi’s; Chennai’s very own multi designer boutique by Nidhi Goenka — showcasing several Delhi-based designers including Amit Aggarwal, Rajdeep Ranawat, Dhruv Kapoor and Abhinav Mishra — to look forward to.
September 17 and 18. 11 am to 8 pm, The Folly at Amethyst.
Meena Bazaar Signature
Following the annual Meena Bazaar, with big crowds and feverish bouts of shopping — is the more exclusive Meena Bazaar Signature, that comes to Chennai for the first time. Given the pandemic, a more intimate setting sounds like a blessing. And not a moment too soon, with the
festive season around the corner. Organised by the Rajasthan Cosmo Club Foundation, the two-day event will showcase 45 stalls across 14 categories from 10 cities. Think jewellery, home décor, ethnic wear and some confectionery for fuel, to shop some more, of course! Also, for once, you won’t have to fret about running out of time with day one of this exhibition promising to be open till midnight! Keeping the eclectic taste of their patrons in mind, the organisers have curated the event to ensure that there is something for everyone and to suit varied styles and occasions. Some of the designer labels you can look out for are Priyanka Contemporary (ethnic wear) from Bengaluru, Ishnya (kaftans and ethnic silhouettes) from Mumbai and Suman (indo-western ensembles) from Kolkata. It also helps to know that this event is also a fundraiser and all proceeds are toward a good cause.
September 17 and 18. 10 am to 8pm. At Taj Coromandel. Entry at INR 500.
Inputs from Romal Laisram, Sonali Shenoy and Priyanka Chandani.