Oldie But Goodie: Bombay Paperie
Fans of this gem-like store will know that the only way you chance upon Bombay Paperie is after hearing about it through someone (they don’t advertise). Located, unexpectedly across from the Bombay Stock Exchange (it has just moved a few blocks down from its previous location), the store very much still demands that you make the trek expressly to find it. The charm, of course, is partly in the incongruity of finding reams of rainbow-hued papers bang smack in the middle of a financial district.
Opened ten years ago by Neeta Premchand, Bombay Paperie remains one of the best paper stores in perhaps all of India. Premchand, a paper historian who has learnt the craft herself, is single-handedly responsible for reviving the ancient paper mills of Daulatabad in Maharashtra. Each sheet of paper in the store is still handmade by master craftsmen who can date back their ancestors to the time of Emperor Jehangir. The paper, incidentally, is made from cotton waste, not trees, and is block printed by artisans in Ahmedabad, who like their Daulatabad brethren, can trace their craft to centuries ago. The circuitous route of the paper—it’s first made in Daulatabad, sent to Mumbai for sorting, then to Ahmedabad to be printed and back to Mumbai—ensures that near every sheet is unique.
A smorgasbord of technicoloured proportions, the store is filled with waist-high stacks of paper that cover every shade of the rainbow from Robin’s egg blue to sea moss to sunflower yellow. The products, which range from cards and pocket-sized notepads to paper sculptures and flowers, display Premchand’s generous approach. If someone has an idea, she’s happy to have them execute it as long as the creators (be they employees or creative customers) can replicate it for inventory. The Paperie holds workshops for kids; and if Premchand is around (she splits her time between Mumbai and Zurich), you’d do well to pepper her with questions. Her knowledge of paper making is fascinating, immense and eye-opening.
Prices range from Rs15 for gift tags to Rs1,500 for paper screens.Tags: Bombay Paperie, Neeta Premchand, Oldie But Goodie, Shopping
Location63 Bombay Samachar Marg
Opposite the main entrance of Bombay Stock Exchange
HoursMonday to Saturday, 10.30am to 6pm; Sunday closed