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Post by Admin on 24.07.16 7:45

c) Shopping: Bought some “silk” mulberry paper on which miniatures in Uzbekistan are typically made from Koni Ghil, paper mache mask; Bought some beautiful suzanis (expect to pay over hundred dollars for medium-sized suzanis with neat work and original designs) from a lady named Nigora (whom we didn’t get a chance to meet) who actually made the suzanis in a large store/ cell at Ulugbek Madrassah in the Registon – You can also ask for Mishka who may be easier to locate although he seemed to be just the salesperson there. We saw some great stores on the street which has lots of shops on either side and connects Bibi Khanum and Gur Emir, which we didn’t have time to visit. At the end of the street is the Samarkand Crafts Centre or Art Centre, I forget which. Happy Bird store is an antiques store on the second floor. It has a great collection of clothing, artifacts, jewelry and art run by I think a Tartar woman. I found some beautiful jewelry there and wonderful watercolours by a Russian artist based in Uzbekistan. This store is also where I spotted Abdulvahid Bukhoriy’s turquoise (firozah) and purple on white ceramics and was intrigued by it. Next, we visited visited Nargis’ Art Café and Store by Bibi Khanum. Nargis is an architect turned fashion designer and has some superb old and new suzanis and blockprinted cotton made into dresses, overcoats. Although priced high (over USD 100), her designs are fantastic but value for money for the high quality she produces. If you go during working hours she will even alter the clothing to your size; Urghut Wednesday market is absolutely avoidable unless you just want to see a massive market selling everything from toilet paper to apricots and cheap synthetic clothing to villagers and small-town folks. We went on Wednesday because it had old suzanis and jewelry being sold in a corner but the suzanis were okay and most of the “silver” jewelry (overpriced despite bargaining) looked like it was made of a random crumbly silver-white metal and not silver at all. Maybe the Sunday market is better for antiques but I really think you are better off buying these things from Samarkand and Bukhara shops, despite the markup.

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