A passage to India—via Port Chester
In the market for the fabulously intricate, handmade personal and home accessories popular in India (think silk scarves or embroidered pillows) but don't want to board a plane to get them? Then head to Port Chester.
There, for the past five years, Parviz Batliwala, a native of India who now calls Westchester home, has been importing everything from tablecloths and napkins to shawls and evening bags through her company, Echo. “Every time I went to India, I would come back with something—table linens or a piece of clothing," she says. "People would always say, ‘Next time, get something like that for me.’ One year, I tried it, to see if people were serious, and I sold out."
Today, Batliwala travels to India once or twice a year for weeks at a time, visiting rural villages to find unique products. Her inventory includes handbags made of silk and embellished with embroidery and mirrors, hand-dyed silk jackets, and cushion covers created by tribal women in Western India. “Everything is handmade,” says Batliwala, “be it woven, printed, or embroidered—and it’s all done using traditional methods.” Batliwala sells her products by appointment only, (she holds an open house once or twice a year) with prices starting at about $20 and going up to around $250. To make an appointment, call (914) 935-0053 or visit echohandmade.com. //MI