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Impressive antique replicas

For craft lovers who cannot afford expensive antiques, replicas are an ideal option. A city-based shop features a wide collection.


RELIVING MEMORIES of the past is a wonderful pastime. One way of experiencing that pleasure is to have a collection of old trinkets or antiques that speak of the times gone by. Not that all of them must be of some use. What might appear worthless to many could still hold a lot of meaning for those who treasure these items.

Buying antiques used to be the hobby of the rich or those who travelled often and made it a point to scout for them. Not anymore. With replicas becoming a big business, the common public has got the opportunity to lend an aesthetic touch to their homes. A shop at R. S. Puram in the city caters to the needs of such people. "We found similar shops in other places in the State. But there were none in Coimbatore. We started off with the aim of creating a market," says Rajendra M. Shah, proprietor of The Crafters.

"It's not always possible to buy antiques, because they are rare and expensive. But, one can get replicas which look like the real thing," says J. Varun, manager of the shop.


"Affordability is an important factor that decides what people buy. Also, antiques come with various restrictions. Earlier, not many were aware of replicas, with which it is possible to get a feel of the antiques at a nominal price," he explains.

At The Crafters, one can choose from a whole array of items ranging from Rs.70 to Rs.70,000; from a simple piece of art to intricately designed creations.

Made of brass, the replicas come from Jaipur, Delhi, Moradabad, Mangalore and Kumbakonam. Decorative pieces and idols of gods and goddesses occupy considerable space at the shop. It also houses idols of Lord Ganesha in over 100 poses and also brass models of animals and birds.


Sankheda furniture from Gujarat and bajoth stools are also displayed. It is not just about decorative pieces that are meant to adorn walls. Some of the items at the shop have a utility value as well. Artistic ashtrays, key-holders, rings, bottle openers, wall hangers and door handles, letter boxes and magazine holders are also on sale. One can even get a functioning replica of an early model telephone for Rs.1800. Also available are utensils used for rituals, antique binoculars, telescopes, compasses and sand timers. Thanjavur paintings, gemstones, cloth paintings and wall pieces are the other articles up for grabs.

All the items are sourced from artisans' associations and manufacturers.

M. ALLIRAJAN

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