Jun 14, 2010

The making of Waraq

Today I am going to take you inside a "Waraq" shop.  

"Waraq" is thin silver foil used to decorate sweets in India. Take a walk from Charminar, towards Shah Ali Banda, past the Unani hospital and the Mecca Masjid, and you will come across several "waraq" shops, where silversmiths beat silver into thin foils.

The shops are hard to notice, and you will hear them before you see them. Amidst the hustle and bustle of the crowded bazaar, if you pause and listen, you will hear the steady tapping noise of the silver being beaten into foils. Follow your ear, and you will see one of many tiny, dark shops that look like this:
Step inside and take a look, and watch how the silver is beaten into a thin, delicate foil:
So the next time you bite into a rich desi sweet or a meetha paan, you'll know how the pretty waraq on it was made :)


  1. Anonymous7:15 AM

    *like* :)

    - Aditya

  2. Prashanth8:53 AM

    this is turning out to be the best blog about hyderabad, with it's list of interesting(some of which were unknown before) articles with a blend of these lively pictures. thank you Madhu. you are such a pakka hyderabadi :)

  3. Thank you Dilip :)

    Aditya - thank you :))

    Prashanth - thank you so very much, it made me soooo happy to read your comment! Staying away from Hyderabad makes it so difficult for me to keep this project going, but I am really stretching myself to make sure I spend enough time shooting in Hyderabad - I often end up taking late night and early morning flights even on working days - its very tiring sometimes, but I wouldn't dream of stopping :) So your comment really means a lot to me - thank you:)

  4. You have a great eye. I am from Hyderabad, still these pictures seem to be from another time and place (in a good way!). Do you have a recommendation on what camera to get for me to start out with photography?

  5. Thank you Dinesh - I guess Hyderabad is my "muse" :) I started off with my dad's Sony point and shoot camera - i think it was called cybershot. My first SLR was a Nikon D40. I have now graduated to my husband's Nikon D200 lol :) I still love my D40 - it's a great camera to start with.

  6. gorgeous photos madhu :)
    graet documentation of how waraq is made.
    home is indeed where the heart is.

  7. Lovely blog.. and pictures. It is a visual treat on Hyderabad.Thank you for sharing the beauty of the such small places.

  8. Anonymous12:01 AM

    Hi Madhu,
    Same like you ....I am tamilian born and grown up in Hyd and married to Telugu:-)).But now I am settled in Blore.
    I miss so much of Hyd.I miss the Irani Chai,onion samosa,shopping in general/Sultan bazar,going to theaters(How dirty it may be)and of course my time spent on the necklace rd.
    Glad that I traced your blog.It is really refreshing to see nice pics old hyd(I grew up in Old city).


  9. Thank you so much Megha :)

    Charu - thanks a ton - glad you like the photos :)

    Teju - same pinch! it's lovely to know another person just like me :) I totally love all the things you mention :) Do visit often :)

  10. never been to hyd - but this is what i imagine i would see. Awesome!

  11. Thanks a ton, Divya :) On this blog, I mostly cover the old city area of Hyderabad. So the impression my blog gives of the city isn't really what new Hyderabad is like :) The newer parts of the city are concrete jungles like any other big city in the country - swanky malls, huge offices, expressways, flyovers. That kind of development is great, and very essential too, but it leads to a kind of homogeneity - all cities look the same. It's the older pockets of a city that give it its unique character, and I try to capture that aspect of Hyderabad in my pictures :)

    1. Congrates You did Great Job. I am Sathish Kumar from GHMC. The Govt . is want to recognize the unknown our Cultural heritage like waraq shop. GHMC is doing detail project report to the GOV to encourage the Cultural Bussiness which are going to die. they want to encourage cultural business like this waraq shop and want to provide loan facility.

      Ur this blog is grate use full to make DPR to Govt.

      Thanq u

    2. Thank you Satish sir!

  12. Love your pictures and your blog.