First, a little history
Shahpur Jat is one of Delhi’s hippest neighbourhoods. It is also a strange one where the rural and the urban co-exist in perfect harmony. So, it isn’t rare to find a posh boutique housed in a run-down building or even a farm animal leisurely strolling by mannequins dressed in fancy attire.
At the turn of the century, upcoming designers began renting spaces in Shahpur Jat, mostly because of the bargain real estate prices. It also helped that the area was home to migrant artisans, and dyeing workshops were nearby. Gradually, the place began attracting entrepreneurs, artists and other creative professionals, many of them expatriates who brought in a cultural revolution of sorts to the sleepy and neglected neighbourhood. Now the locality has art galleries, co-working spaces, concept restaurants, vintage stores as well as a thriving street art scene.
Shahpur Jat was once a part of the city of Siri, one of the ancient capitals of Delhi. The ruins of the old city are still visible here. About 700 years ago, the Panwar Gotra Jats from Madhya Pradesh were drawn to the fertile lands of Shahpur Jat. While the farming lands have now given way to fashion boutiques, the Jat community still resides here.
The best place for wedding shopping
During the wedding season, the narrow alleys of Shahpur Jat are filled with soon-to-be brides and grooms plus their friends and families, all rushing from one boutique to another to find the perfect outfits for the big day. With so many amazing stores to choose from, it’s safe to say they’re all quite spoilt for choice.
On the other hand, if you’ve travelled across the world to attend a friend’s wedding in Delhi and haven’t yet decided what to wear, you will also find some great options such as anarkalis, lehengas, gowns and sarees at the boutiques in Shahpur Jat.
Pretty S Kapoor, Madsam Tinzin, Liz Paul, Bhumika Grover and Sahiba Singh are all popular stores. There’s no dearth of fabrics, colours or designs at these places – you won’t be disappointed. But these designer outfits don’t come cheap. The price range can start from Rs 35,000 (£395) and can go up to lakhs.
Preeti S Kapoor, 40, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 9810 2165 15
Madsam Tinzin, 5 K/2, Ground Floor, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 11 264 910 11
Bhumika Grover, 5C, Jungi House Lane, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 11 4057 0894
Sahiba Singh, 87A, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 11 2649 8982
If you want something less expensive, then you can try stores such as Tanka, Mubaarak Fashions and Crystal Designer Ethnic Wear, where prices are generally below Rs 10,000 (£115).
Tanka, L-5, Basement, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 9650 9757 75
Mubaarak Fashions, 5 K/2, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 9871 1136 57
Crystal Designer Ethnic Wear, B-86, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 9910 5179 31
Shahpur Jat is not just great for bridal wear; there’s a wide range of selections even for men. You’ll find everything from ethnic sherwanis to smart tuxedos at stores such as VastraLab and D3 By Dev. If the groom just wants to wear a simple but perfectly tailored suit, then Philocaly is strongly recommended.
VastraLab, 303, Ground Floor, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 9811 5577 87
D3 By Dev, 253A, 1st Floor, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 9717 7712 22
A recent trend that has been gaining ground in the city is that of wedding rentals, and Shahpur Jat has some good places where you can rent wedding dresses and accessories at less than half the original prices. Flyrobe and Rent An Attire are two of the best rental stores here.
Flyrobe, 5 H/1, Dada Jungi Lane, Shahpur Jat, New Delhi, India, +91 22 399 718 19
While you’re shopping in Shahpur Jat, do take some time to admire the vibrant street art adorning the many residential and commercial buildings in the area. These were painted by both homegrown and international artists during the Street Art Festival held a few years ago in the capital.