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In any case, some shops along Mahim Matunga sell these a regular kandeel costs Rs 35 while a double storeyed lantern comes for Rs 75.
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Lights: By far the most popular option during Diwali, decorative lights are available at all electrical stores, pedigreed or not. Eighty per cent of the designs comprise small or big flowers made of fabric with slim or round bulbs in their little hearts. Attractive chunks of glass, almost like icecubes embedded with coloured bulbs, are a recent favourite.
Oil lamps: Families in Kumbharwada continue to churn out the little earthen diyas that were once the hallmark of Diwali celebrations in every Indian household. However, during the past few years the market for traditional oil lamps has been overrun by the hybrid avatar. Brightly coloured diyas encased in bandhni and lined with pretty beadwork are available for as little as Rs 10 apiece. Some are filled with wax while others are cast in the traditional mould and require oil and a handmade wick.
However, most of these Chinese lights fail to work after one season, if not sooner. Use and throw is the mantra here too. Their short lived glory is the reason these fairy lights are available cheap. A string of 80 regular bulbs costs a mere Rs 50, while Air Huarache Safari
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Retail stores sell jelly type floating candles for anywhere from Rs 45 165 for a set of four. Traders at the wholesale market in Mumbai's Masjid Bunder claim that the popularity of floating candles is gradually creeping up on that of regular diyas.
Lanterns: Paper lamps or kandeel are on the way out. This is the unanimous verdict in shopping bazaars across Mumbai. First the classic pentacle gave way to the bulbous design, then the string of inexpensive fairy lights demolished the kandeel altogether. It was also the inconvenience of having to install Huarache Shoes Gold a bulb on the outer edge of the window or balcony to hang the lantern over that precipitated its end. "No one wants the trouble of calling in an electrician to fit a temporary light connection for Diwali and then dismantle it. Lights come with an attached plug that can be simply connected to the nearest switchboard," says a retailer, who has only two designs to show this season.
Interestingly, once these pastelcoloured candles are placed in a bowl of water and lit up, the ambience becomes more romantic than devotional. "During Lakshmi pooja, the simple earthen diya serves as a reminder that the goddess represents purity, peace and prosperity rather than just wealth and opulence," says a traditionalist who discovered this fact and went back to the good old ways.
warranty or the promise of repair, even for a cost. "No electrician is willing to put in hours of labour to repair a complicated product like Chinese lights," says Amit Patel of Skilful Electricals, one of the five prominent light stores in Lokhandwala Complex.
50 LED lights that are vaguely said to "last longer", cost Rs 125. A web of net lights essentially long, flat bulbs cast in strings of wire is available for Rs 150. None of these comes with a Nike Air Huarache Low Black And White
As the festival of lights gets under way next week, most of the big purchases like electronics are likely to have been made already. It is now that the attention becomes focussed on the little items of worship and decoration that in fact reflect the true ethos of Diwali. Here is a quick sample of the decorative items available this season.
Available in sets of four and five, the bigger ones cost Rs 70 95. "We just sold our biggest candelabra style diya for Rs 195," says Anil Sharma, whose Hitesh Store in Lokhandwala, Mumbai is well stocked for the Diwali shopping festival that is under way in the locality. However, the flame scorches the fine material and the white beads that line the rim of the diya, making it unfit for repeat use. Candles: Floating candles are the flavour of the season. No longer is one required to pour oil into a diya or wipe a possible spill afterwards. On the reverse side, this takes away some of the ceremony of the Diwali rituals.
step closer to the real thing, though. All one must do is, sprinkle the coloured powder onto the floor through the holes in the sheet of paper. A beautiful lotus or Swastika emerges when one lifts the sheet.
The colourful zero watt bulbs made in India, which can be bought for Rs 7 9 apiece, may not make as pretty a picture but they do last longer. Moreover, in this case, one need only replace the faulty bulb, whereas in the Chinese series of lights, the entire string stops functioning once a single bulb gives way.
Rangoli: These days stickers do well for those who cannot spare the time or effort to draw out a floor design with powder the traditional way. Auspicious motifs like Om and the Swastika and the footprint of Goddess Lakshmi are crafted in big and small sizes to be stuck on the threshold of the home as well as inside. A small print costs Rs 5, whereas a large sticker that spans about two feet and incorporates all the requisite symbols of Diwali, is available for Rs 35.
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