Lost in paradise

Lost in Paradise

The most exciting thing happened to me this week – heading home one night about 6pm, I got lost. I do this a lot being unfamiliar with Auckland and its wily ways. Anyway suddenly I was in the midst of an unfamiliar group of shops – only a dozen or so, and shining like a bejewelled crown among them was an Indian clothing store. And being Thursday night, it was open.

I pulled over and went in as if drawn by an immutable force – what my mother calls the ‘magpie’ in me. According to her, when I was at playcentre, there was an Indian child whose mother wore saris, and I was vocal in my

admiration of these gorgeous garments, and assumed that she was a princess at the very least!

So, hovering between 3 and 36, I walked in and my senses were overwhelmed by the colours, the gold and silver, the beads, and that delicious spicy dry smell of Indian textiles. The gent behind the counter was very helpful and once he knew what colours I liked, had the bench covered in saris.

So what was I buying a sari for? Well, for the fabric. Six and a half metres of exquisite gold and pink shimmering embroidered fabric with borders is going into making a simple bathrobe for me to swan around in pretending I am Sheherazade about to bathe in asses milk. And for only $60.

That may seem a lot but there is enough fabric in one to make a couple of garments, and some of the loveliest saris were as little as $40. And I did get the price down from $75, without trying very hard. I was so overwhelmed by the choice, I think he took my hesitation for second thoughts and offered me the lower price without me saying a thing.

I know this all presupposes that you sew, and I apologise to those of you who don’t, or don’t have access to someone who does. But if you love colour (although they also come in delicate and subtle hues), have a taste for the exotic and can get the construction organised, it’s well worth checking them out. This shop was in Richardson Road in Mt Roskill, but there are

‘emporiums’ like this all over the country.

If anyone wants to know how to make a bathrobe out of a bordered or plain fabric that is simple, allows for a pear shape and can be made out of a sari length, let me know and I’ll work out a way of putting the pattern online.

5 pieces and 7 seams, it’s easy peasy.

I love getting lost! Now all I have to do is find the shop again, as I have a few more projects up my sleeve…

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