Friday, December 5, 2014

Nostalgia: Pottery @ Periyar Road, Chennai

When we were in school and later in college, my sister Jayashree and I used to grow a garden on our second floor terrace at Ranganathan Road, Numgambakkam. It was a mind-blowing experience watching tiny shoots sprout out of seeds and grow into young plants. It was fascinating to watch flowers turn into brinjals, ladyfingers, tomatoes, ribbed gourd and more.

While it wasn’t easy lugging huge mud pots and soil up to the second floor while watering them every day; carrying buckets of aqua from the first floor, we wouldn’t have missed the experience for anything.

The closest point where we could get pots from was Periyar Road where resided a pottery colony. They still do actually. We used to take a walk of approximately 2 km one way and lug pots, probably two on each trip, back home. Auto rickshaws were not too plenty those days while cycle rickshaws not always agreed to go in our direction. More than that, Jayu and I felt we would buy an extra pot or two rather than spend on conveyance.

The full stretch of Periyar Road from near Valluvar Kottam to the end of Arcot Road used to be filled with pots of different shapes and sizes.

A few days ago, I took one more trip down nostalgia lane when I walked through Periyar Road. This was the same walk I took to Numgambakkam High Road from North Usman Road. The number of pot vendors has reduced while the variety has gone up. There were dolls and statuettes along with diyas and other decorative curios. I also found some flower pots amidst the lot and couldn’t help recall our terrace garden.


  1. The dolls are very nice...even we have a small garden in our terrace.. watering the plants relieves me from stress :)

  2. I used to love the handicrafts as a kid. Still do. Those chimes made out of mud - they give such beautiful clinking sound. You have a lovely blog Sundari- wealth of information.

  3. Thank you Ranjana! Yeah, I agree with you :)

  4. Thank you for stopping by and posting a comment Ina Gupta. I am glad you like my blog :D

  5. Hi..Lovely pics and nice info.
    I was searching for these pots for a long time but was not sure from where to buy them.
    Do they still sell them ? I would like to know the location and landmark. Please help. Also i would like to know the roadside pottery shops that sells Jaipuri Blue pottery in chennai

  6. Hi Subhra,
    I live in Mumbai actually. I used to live in Chennai thirty years ago. That's why the trip down memory lane. The pictures are from Periyar Road near Valluvar Kottam, Nungambakkam. I hope that'll help you find the place