What to Buy in India

On one of the tours that we went on, our tour guide mentioned three things that you should get when in India:

1) Kashmir carpets - the time it takes to make one, depends on the number of knots. As an example, our guide mentioned that even a small carpet can take as long as 5 years to make, depending on the design. Each part of the design (e.g. a flower), symbolizes something and has meaning.

2)Blue or star sapphire

3)Pashminas - if the price is below USD 170, our guide says that that is not real pashmina. With that as a guideline, I suppose I bought myself some pashmina-pashminahan but who cares so long as I'm happy. Pashmina, they say, is a type of wool taken from the belly of the sheep or goat - or a part not hit by the sun. I got pashminas (ok, fake pashminas by our guide's standards) which were plain (but the colors were nice!) at Cottage Emporium (the one we visited on a Sunday and not the one at Connaught Place) but later saw those which were embroidered (and sold at the same price as the plain ones)at one of the markets/bazaars. Had to buy more then, to bring the average cost down, right? Anyway, the difference in prices depends on the proportion of pashmina used - something like 100% cotton, perhaps?

Coming Soon: Where to get good bargains in New Delhi

[By Angelica Viloria | Thursday, April 3, 2003]

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