Made in Bengaluru is an insider’s guide to the makers of India’s dynamic and cosmopolitan city Bengaluru. It is a celebration of the city and the talented people who reside and work here. The highly-curated guide profiles the city’s finest artists, artisans, craftspeople, designers, makers and shopkeepers who come together to produce and sell some extraordinary things.
The journey to create the book took authors Fiona Caulfield and Maegan Dobson-Sippy deep into the city. They traversed narrow lanes in the oldest parts of the city and explored the edges of the modern metropolis on a quest to reveal Bengaluru’s most authentic shopping experiences. Every entry has been personally visited and for each entry that made the book, another three or four did not.
These books are not simply about luxury shopping; Fiona and Maegan are equally as excited by colourful churis (bangles) bought from a street stand as by stunning diamond necklaces from the Royal jeweller, thought to be the Tiffany’s of India. They share advice about Bengaluru’s markets and bazaars, including the little-known wholesale fabric market, as well as revealing small textile studios painstakingly practicing art forms as they were done hundreds of years ago, and reveal an atelier creating jewel-encrusted costumes for globally acclaimed movies.
The intention of the book is to take the reader beyond a simple shopping transaction, as evoked at the beginning of the book, in an extract from Pablo Neruda’s poem, ‘Ode to Things’. Fiona and Maegan share the story of the city and the people through its objects and marketplaces. They believe that you are not just buying an object, but that you are connecting to the maker, recognising their creativity and mastery, as well as supporting and encouraging their future.
The book contains a Love Bengaluru section, opening with an essay “How to Love Bangalore” by acclaimed Bengaluru-based writer, Arshia Sattar. The chapter also details the best places to stay, dine and ways in which to explore the city and surrounding areas, as well as essential tips on how to get around.
The Made in Bengaluru book comes with a matching travel journal, designed as a keepsake, and to enable the traveller to record their impressions of the city, be that in a sketch or in notes.
The books are completely hand-made in India, and are the result of design collaboration with Aneeth Arora of the acclaimed clothing brand péro, based in New Delhi. The Made in Bengaluru book has a madder red natural dye hand-woven cotton Khadi cover, the fabric of India’s independence. The matching travel journal is covered with Bengali handloom checks. Both books are printed on paper that is made by hand in the age-old method in the small village of Sanganer, on the edge of the pink city Jaipur in Rajasthan, and have hand-made bookmarks and hand-embroidered labels, created by ladies working in the péro atelier. The covers are hand-printed and the books are hand-bound and finished all at Judge Press in Bengaluru.