Shopping for raw material

Shopping is an exhilarating activity esp. for women, but is it so when you are fishing for raw materials to create your ideal product? Hmmm…a definitive YES for me. The moment I see the perfect material for my conceptualized product, my eyes gleam,there’s a perky smile, and at times I do a little joy dance too. A consumer may appreciate your product, but at the end of the day it comes down to the price. So, I feel buying good quality material but at wholesale rates becomes important. Now, this in itself was a challenge for me because having lived in Delhi for ages I never had been to wholesale markets. So lets analyse a “wholesale market”. A place crowded such that you have to save yourself from being hit by a cart or crushed between people, be ogled if you are a girl, and has niches of different goods. On the hand, it’s a hustling bustling mela of people, colors, and sounds.

My first task was to know which all and where all are the wholesale markets. Next, which wholesale market do I find my requisite raw material? In a span of two months, I roamed around Chandni Chowk, Chawri Bazaar, Sadar Bazaar, Kotla, Panchkuian, Paharganj and yet to explore Nai Sadak. I believe I have to visit more to remember the galis and find more of my requirements and yet at an even lesser cost. One thing I totally loved about these markets. Every shopkeeper is welcoming and helpful. If they don’t have what I need, they will still take out few minutes of their time to tell me which shop or gali I will find it. I believe this is the business sense in Delhi in general and a lovable trait about my city. This is where I come back to one of the reasons I began this blog. Supposedly, I watch a you tube video, it will say use “packaging peanuts” and sitting in India I will be like where on Earth can I find these???E commerce gives a solution but then the purpose of buying raw material at lower cost to offer your customer the best price is defeated. So it becomes essential to survey the wholesale markets, sometimes for a long time, to get to what exactly you want.

A bit of preparedness goes into these trips. First, jot down all the raw material, howsoever varied. The idea is to cut down on the transportation cost per product. Wear your best walking shoes when going for day long shopping spree. Always carry one big and one small water bottle, lots of quick bites like tiny biscuit packs or chocolates or swiss cakes, and at least two big chunky shopping bags. I mention all the sugary eats because they give you an energy boost that I think is needed to keep your spirits going.It is best to keep in mind your mode of transport, for instance, is there any material that metro doesn’t allow to carry?or is my car going to be able to enter small galis?One should anticipate the weight of materials they are buying so maybe you can buy the heaviest material in the end to save yourself some labor while walking or befriend a shopkeeper and station your material there. Another question for consideration is whether to go alone or be accompanied to wholesale markets. Personally, it feels safer with another person, there’s a second opinion, and it is a bonus if the person can bargain.Nonetheless, there might be more breaks in between shopping.

I think the most important thing while looking for raw materials in wholesale markets is to have a positive attitude and an observant eye. I find  things when I wasn’t even looking for them, but needed for some product idea. It is a tiring day, but quite fulfilling as it pumps my enthusiasm to create more beautiful products.

Signing off 🙂

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