If it looks quirky and it’s called kitsch, Bangalore wants it. Purses wrapped in autorickshaw prints, coffee mugs that scream Bollywood dialogues and phone covers that wear cartoons of funny Indian-isms are examples of what the city is calling kitsch.
Kitsch designers are popping up all over the city selling their creativity through a range of products from home décor to fashion accessories. And to support these designers, there is a row of flea markets like Kitsch Mandi, Souk on the Move and Soul Santhe that are held once every few months.
But for those who can’t always make it to the flea markets, worry not. These “uber cool” products are also found in stores that are no less when it comes to the quirk factor.
The Orange Bicycle
With a name like Orange Bicycle, it’s only right that they have one at the store. Kitsch products adorn the walls, floors and every other available space in this store. If you are an art fiend, the many paintings in the store might interest you. Enter and you will not leave without buying something.
A little Pandora’s Box of all things traditional Indian. They have everything from Rajasthani wall hangings to nose rings. Levitate has two stores in the city – the flagship store in 100 Ft. Boutique and another in Ulsoor. If you know someone who’s in town for just a day and needs a very Indian souvenir to take back home, this is a reliable place to stop by.
Totally Hot Stuff
THS houses unique and quirky products made by design labels from around the world including British street fashion brand Fred Perry. From gadgets to wardrobes, all their ‘hot stuff’ can be found both online as well as at the physical store. THS has one store in Bangalore and four in Singapore.
Arty Souk is a boutique located on a terrace. With an aqua blue door and ladder at the entrance, this store speaks quaint in volumes. The owner of the store also has an event planning and design brand called Tailor Made, whose products are sold at the store. Most of their collection is handmade and customisable, and they deliver across India.
Sanctuary – The Lifestyle Souk
This store is actually an ancient Jewish structure. Sanctuary has a boutique as well as a café, called Café Zync. The boutique houses apparel for women, men and kids. There is also footwear, accessories, furniture, artefacts and an art gallery. The vast collection is sure to keep you occupied for hours and if you have a fussy companion with you, the café is a good place to let them be.
This is one of the newly opened kitsch stores in Bangalore. The name fits perfectly because it’s a tiny room full of products by different popular kitsch brands. The friendly storekeeper is very well informed and homely feel of the place will have you looking around for longer than you expect.
Another newly opened store, Turtle Doves started selling to the quirk lovers in the city in April this year. White shelves against black walls, this store lets the colours speak through the ample kitsch products it sells. Turtle Doves recently hosted its very own flea market, called the Weekend Flea.
Chumbak is a Bangalore based brand that has open stores in almost all the major malls in the city as well as the airport. Magnets, boxers, travel pillows – they have a diverse range of products that proudly tell you of different Indian-isms. Their products are also sold in the other kitsch shops listed above.