More Istanbul Treasures

So, you already know that I loved Istanbul.  Such a fascinating city---a strange combination of Eastern tradition and Western culture.  And the shopping----oh, the shopping!  So many textures, colors, and treasures!

I was in the market for a Suzani as I thought that a Suzani from the Grand Bazaar would be a fitting souvenir for me:  something beautiful that I would use.  I thought I'd hit up the Grand Bazaar, see a few Suzanis, and easily make my selection.  Ha!  Not true.  There were just too many really good ones.  I seriously could have come home with a dozen of them.  Ultimately, I knew I wanted one really large one to drape over a bed or hang on a wall.  I kind of had my guest bedroom in mind as it seriously needs some sprucing up.  That room has not been addressed yet, but I do have a mint green/tangerine thing kind of going on (even though the room needs desperately to be painted---the paint from the previous owners is still visible with several hand-written messages of angst by the pre-teen daughter scrawled on the walls.  The writing DOES provide much amusement for guests who stay in the room, but I really need to paint in here!)

Most Suzanis have lots of reds in them, which is very beautiful, but not quite what I have going on in my home.  So, when I saw this old Suzani wedged under a pile of more traditional Suzanis in an older gentleman's booth, I became quite excited:
 I'm afraid my photo does not quite do the piece justice.  The orange is a great tangerine color and there are mint greens, blues, yellows, pinks, and toned-down reds.  This Suzani was not at all like the many others I had pawed through and it immediately looked like something I'd want in my home.  I actually did a really stupid thing:  I didn't decide right away, tried to remember the booth in case I wanted to come back, and left the Bazaar empty-handed.  24 hours later, I was still thinking of this Suzani and I knew it was the one.  If you've ever been to the Grand Bazaar you know that the cardinal rule is to buy a treasure when you see it.  If you walk away, it's not likely the treasure will still be there when you get back.  And that's ONLY IF you can find the same booth again!  The Bazaar is a giant maze where stuff starts to look the same and inventory is constantly shifting.  So, when I went back for this gem I knew, with a sense of dread, that it was highly unlikely that I'd actually find the booth or the item again.  A "wrong turn" actually led me back to the booth and the Suzani was still there---piled beneath more "desirable Suzanis."  When I left the booth, the older man who owned it asked the neighboring shopkeeper (who spoke a bit of English) to tell me to please make sure I used this piece.  He told me it was meant to be used, not stored away.  I thought it was sweet, and a good reminder to me to use beautiful things for everyday use.

Another treasure from the Grand Bazaar is this cute small mother-of-pearl mirror.  My husband actually got this for me.  I had noticed it hanging in the back of a booth and commented that it was such a sweet, pretty little mirror.  When I went to look at some earrings, he bought it for me.  Isn't that the sweetest?
I haven't yet found the perfect place for my little mirror, so right now it sits propped behind my brass candlestick menagerie.  This vignette makes me smile as it looks like something right out of the Grand Bazaar:


Gul Sen said...

İstanbuldan sevgiler :)