When we were younger we never thought furniture would cost so much. It’s only when you have a home of your own and you decide to spruce it up that you find out a single arm chair can cost up to fifteen thousand rupees! That’s a lot of money for a single chair. You realise you don’t want to break the bank but still have a comfy home that is your own, enter second hand markets. Each city has one. A place where old furniture go to be broken down into their individual parts or sold for scrap. Mumbai has Oshiwara and Chor Bazaar, Delhi has Amar Colony and so on and so forth.
On my first trip to Oshiwara I was taken aback by how many mid century modern pieces there were. But wooden chairs don’t come cheap. I didn’t find something that cost less than seven thousand rupees. But I know teak and sheesham is expensive. These chairs were still cheaper than the ones I’d fine in a proper furniture shop at a mall, or even Urban Ladder or Pepperfry. One thing I knew for certain was that wood was very durable and if I wanted a quality product I had to invest. Invest I did and I bought many chairs that go well with the rest of my home. The carpenters at Oshiwara will also make you a new piece of furniture if you can show them a reference picture. So I had a shoe rack, a credenza, a bookshelf, a cabinet and a kitchen table made.
Oshiwara is also a place where you can find vintage toys, cameras, lamps, frames etc. I suppose they must have been dumped there by their previous owners but as the saying goes One Man’s Trash etc etc. I’ve purchased two lamps on my countless visits there, and one time a carpenter even threw in a wooden tyrannosaurus for free. I highly recommend picking a pleasant afternoon to walk by these line of shops for it is a veritable paradise of thrift finds.