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Monday, Dec 15, 2003

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Spice store


GRAVEL CRUNCHES pleasantly beneath the feet as one heads towards the black stone steps and huge door with a steel sign saying Cinnamon. The lifestyle store with outlets in Bangalore and Cochin opened on Shafee Mohammed Road over the weekend.

Past the door flanked by huge plate glass painted over with black and one enters a steel and black store filled with fascinating objects. A scarlet curtain against the far wall makes the store look like a large stage. Clothes racks designed like willowy limbs of trees hang with Vivek Narang, Wendell Rodricks, Lokesh Ahuja, Nayaika, Sukrita Singh and Rasa's creations. Steel shelves are draped with stoles, scarves, saris and sequinned bags. Pretty potholders, candelabras, photo frames, napkin rings, cutlery and all kinds of bric-a-brac cover every flat surface.

"The idea was to make the Chennai store look different from the others. Here the accent is on space and flow; our other stores have a rather boxy appearance," explains Abhishek Poddar of Cinnamon, loking up from the stole he's draping carefully over a rack. All the products are sourced from within India, some designed specifically for Cinnamon. "We stock designers who work with natural fabrics and those whose designs are timeless. Three years down the line, you can still wear these clothes. The designs won't go out of style," says Radhika Poddar.

She adds that the store doesn't really have a USP, they don't sell particular products but anything that would appeal aesthetically. "Prices range from Rs. 30 to a few thousands," says Radhika. The knick-knacks are attractive and interesting — just looking at them, avoiding the price tags is a lovely way to spend an afternoon. "There are lots of people who just come into our Bangalore store, spend two hours but don't buy anything. It's nice when people appreciate the things we have," says Radhika.

Cinnamon is at 27, Shafee Mohammed Road, Nungambakkam, ph: 28291159.

S.U.

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