Follow AsiaStore’s Chief Merchandising Officer Anne Godshall as she scouts out the latest designs in Asia.
Today I am met by Sangita who has kindly offered to introduce me to some more Kashmiri suppliers and will arrange to have all my India purchases shipped back to NY. 1st stop Khan market to meet with another paper mache supplier, recommended by friends in Kashmir. As we navigate our way through the marketplace, my eye is caught by a fun grouping of burlap totes with sari borders. The laminated interior make it the perfect beach tote/gift bag. Next we pass a stationery store where I spot these lovely block printed notecard packs…have to have them! Onward…oh no, the jewelry. Love the beaded cuffs… I take every piece he has and add in the gold and silver snake bracelets for fun.
Finally, the paper mache shop. This is the collection that is proving to be most problematic. I loved the paisley pieces I found in Kashmir, but the production quantities they requested were just too high for us. The gentleman in this shop says quantities are no problem, so we are off to a good start. Here it is the beautiful chinar leaf pattern that captures my attention. I select 3 designs and request a fourth colorway to be developed. Then the shapes; boxes, containers, coaster sets, trays and bowls…I love, love, love the new collection! Given that each piece has to be hand made I am concerned about delivery, but the owner assures me the collection will be ready in time for Asia Society’s Kashmiri exhibition this fall.
Before leaving Khan market we make a quick stop at Kavita’s signature boutique…just love her creations! On to another textile showroom where I select needlework pieces to supplement my Kashmir purchases. I especially like the copper and coffee colored wools in this grouping.
Back to the hotel where we load up Sangita’s car with all my Kashmir/India purchases. As I turned to enter the hotel, I run into my Asia Society colleague, Pramit, who’s in India for meetings…it’s a small world.
Next I’m off to meet with Rauf Shaw who’s family has had a long tradition of developing carpets and textiles in Kashmir. He shows me the various qualities of wool, cashmere and pashmina. I am intrigued by the block printing and crinkling techniques they are using on cashmere…might be a good look for us!
That’s it for today!