City Markets – Framer Gali, Saddar

Saddar has several specialty markets in the streets connecting with Bunder road on either end. Some of these markets are planned and some of them just grew organically. Over time these shops have multiplied and gotten an identity. These markets not only cater to the customers in Karachi but are popular with people visiting from across the country, often dealing in wholesale rates and quantities. Framer Gali is one such market which had more than 30 shops before current anti-encroachment drive wiped almost half of the shops built on one end of the road.

Most of these shops sell printed images. The most popular ones are that of calligraphy and landscapes. Our national heroes also feature prominently. Sadly most of them are framed in imported Chinese frames of poor quality. In one or two shops, you may find some original work for very reasonable rates but in very little quantity. The customers here don’t shop for original work as it tends to be more expensive. Similarly there is only one or two shop dealing in customized frames. You will find these frames ending up in houses, shops, hotels and offices. Some of the owners will display them as their prized collection and some of them won’t. In a city where increased cost of living makes it difficult to make both ends meet for majority of its denizens, the very act of purchasing a framed image needs to be celebrated.

These shops are aesthetically very pleasing. Most of these shops are in century old residential structures which have been modified to make space for shops. Some of the shops have retained original tiles. The balconies and grill work on top of these shops adds to the character of the market. All of the shops are very well decorated with essential and decorative lighting as vendors aim to interrupt people taking the busy road to Bunder road or Burns road food market. Some of these shops have started dealing in home decoration and sell wall clocks, artificial flowers and other collectibles. Make a stop here when you visit Burns road next and take your time to explore the merchandise. You might become a proud owner of some collectible.

Categories: City Markets

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