Young World

Store of surprises

COLOUR AND KITSCH At Pappadum Photo: S. Rishab

COLOUR AND KITSCH At Pappadum Photo: S. Rishab   | Photo Credit: S_RISHAB

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Offering a range of designer products and activities, Pappadum in Teynampet is an eco-store that caters for kids

With colourful little handprints adorning the outer walls, Pappadum is not just easy on the tongue but on the eyes as well. “We named the store that because it’s a fun word and comes very easily to children,” says Harini Lakshminarayan, one of its founders. A mix of colourful and kitschy elements, there is more to this eco-store for kids than meets the eye.

Started by Priyanka Raghunath and Harini Lakshminarayan in December last year, Pappadum is place that promotes independent artists who specialise in children’s products. “All our products are design-heavy because we’re trying to give an opportunity to urban designers, who are parents themselves, to showcase quality products. There is so much talent around and we want to add a very Indian side to children’s clothing. We try to make sure they are fair trade products and eco-friendly,” says Priyanka.

The store sources books, clothes, toys, games and other products for children up to age five. “A lot of the products we have here are made by parents-turned-entrepreneurs and, therefore, they are baby-friendly, non-toxic and organic,” says Harini. “In fact, one of the reasons behind starting this store is that Priyanka was looking for some products for her baby and didn’t know where to go. There are a few big brands but what if you want something else, with a local flavour? Our clothes are mostly made of organic cotton (we have pavadai made out of cotton instead of silk) and we have books by Indian authors who aren’t well-known.”

There are royal blue elephant clocks, rocking horses, T-shirts with cows wearing sun glasses and nose rings and other quirky products. “There are brilliant designers who get lost in a big store but in a place like ours, they add a lot of character. Even with our books, we try to sell those relevant to our life today, and we try not to limit them to fairy tales,” says Priyanka, “While not all our books are Indian, we have a judicious mix and push books the children can relate to. And every product here is hand-picked, so you’ll find a wide variety of products that are exclusive in the sense there won’t be multiple pieces of the same thing.”

Nook for art

Apart from the store, Pappadum also has ‘The Nook’, where they have an art, music and books club for children and parents. “The book club exposes children to some of the books we sell at the store. At the art camp, we have colour labs where we allow children to experiment with colours and express themselves in whatever way they like,” says Harini. The store even has a play area with a sand pit to keep the little ones busy while their parents shop inside.

A café and space for concerts are also on the cards, reveal Harini and Priyanka. “We want to make it a holistic unit where parents can shop and have a cup of tea while the children enjoy themselves. They can also spend their time deciding what to buy as they look around the place. Every thing in this store has a story to tell,” smiles Priyanka.

Pappadum is located at 21, Chittaranjan Road, Teynampet.

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Printable version | Dec 9, 2019 11:56:21 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/features/kids/store-of-surprises/article3662198.ece

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