Indian Treasures on Dundas West



Just last week I was oooing and ahhhing over a sublime selection of Indian quilts and coverlets at Toronto’s wonderful Haveli Home (2871 Dundas West, 416.645.0337). Then, in the brand new issue of Canadian House & Home (September 2012), there’s an item featuring Indian kantha quilts at West Elm (photo below by Angus Fergusson) with patterns remarkably similar to Haveli’s. Naturally I was keen to investigate.

My trip to West Elm was hugely disappointing. Their so-called quilts are thin little throws, approximately the size of a single bed priced at $99 each. The colour selection, too, was a drag with washed-out, muted tones (below), not vibrant at all like the ones in H&H or at Haveli Home.

The quilts at Haveli are mostly queen size, coverlet weight, some in a single pattern with reversible contrasting colour/pattern (below), others in patchwork of myriad colours and patterns. These genuine quilts are priced from $199 with 30 per cent off until the end of this week.

Yes, there’s a whiff of Morningstar about Haveli Home but make no mistake, proprietor David Anderson spent more than a decade in India and he knows his South Asian and Asia Minor fabrics (he even consults with Toronto’s Textile Museum of Canada).

Haveli Home is a tremendous resource for anyone wishing to punch up their decor with some global/ethnic influence, which is still so much the rage. In addition to Haveli’s quilts and hangings (wonderful Suzanis, btw), the shop is an unrivalled pillow emporium with excellent prices (around $30). And as you can see below, they do neutral as well as vivid colour.

My dilemma is whether to buy now or wait until December when I’m in India. My long weekend project is to paint and re-do my bedroom (can’t wait to post it) and I definitely need a coverlet to pull the scheme together. What to do, what to do?


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Sunday, July 29, 2012 by Chris
This post was written by - who has written 865 posts on styleNorth.

15 Comments For This Post

  1. Michelle @ Sweetsuite10 Says:

    I think if you find one now you love go with it. And if you happen to find another when you’re in India later this year, it’s just a bonus.

  2. Eya Donald Greenland Kotulsky Says:

    As a diehard minimalist, I’d say, “Buy once and buy well”. If you don’t find exactly what you love in India (and I’m pretty sure you will, because the selection is huge, and for far less money), then come back and look for something here. Imagine how irritated you’ll be with yourself if you buy something “close but no cigar” here, and then find something far better on your trip. Besides, things always have more allure when they’re from far away. Patience, my friend, is a virtue, especially when you live in a really small space.

  3. Kelly Says:

    first of all, thanks for introducing me and the rest of the world to a bunch of fantastic places that, as non-Torontonians, we’d never know about.
    maybe i’m too sentimental to be purely in love with design: i think that if you find something in India, it will not only be beautiful but will bring back wonderful memories long after your trip. That kind of ”added value” is priceless.

  4. Lin Says:

    India beckons. Be patient.

  5. sc Says:

    Honestly, the ones at Haveli Home (at least from the pic) look like run of the mill standard janpath hippie souvenier junk. I understand the quality is better than West Elm (not that I’d buy from them either but they do choose more “on trend” patterns – I really don’t like the patchwork stuff myself) but this staid old “I”ve been spent a lot of time in India so I set up shop” old hippy thing gets on my nerves. There are quite a few very reputable sellers selling directly from India on Ebay. That’s where I buy my quilts, block print sheets, curtain fabric etc. I’ve never had a problem and they custom order.

  6. Karen J Says:

    Wait. That special item, somewhere in India, is waiting to be squeezed into your suitcase:)

  7. Bev Says:

    I was at Haveli Home a few weeks ago. It is an excellent resource not just for textiles but for the interesting well made furnishings as well. Bonus is that David is an acknowledged expert and while he has lived in India for 10 years his knowledge is gained from close to 40 years of travel throughout that country finding the best of the best so we don’t have to.

  8. Lin Says:

    Buying from ebay is fine. Supporting local independent retailers is better.

  9. shescomeundone Says:

    Half the fun of shopping places like David’s is the education and history lessons he so generously shares. His gregarious charm wins out over the vacuous expression on the West Elm salespersons face when asked about the featured throws as she had no idea they were even in stock. Lin said it: shopping the independent retailer is the better way!

  10. kay* Says:

    oooooh, having recently spent 10 months living in India I’m particularly thrilled at this post; I will definitely have to visit this shop sometime soon.

    and i’m in the wait until you visit india side (unless you absolutely fall in love with something) the variety, prices, colours, patterns…you see will blow. your. mind. if you need any suggestions while visiting india (i lived in Delhi) please let me know! from fabric shops to a pretty fantastic tailor :-)

  11. FranklyDiscreet Says:

    I believe that the owners of Morningstar and Haveli Home are brothers, which may explain why there’s a “whiff of Morningstar” about HH.

  12. godwinkr Says:

    I loved variety of textiles in India… The sizes for a lot of things are not standard though, and it might be a bit difficult to find something the right size. Also, a lot of bedspreads I found were thinner, less quilt-y. Lots of great stuff overall, but also plan ahead on your baggage space :) I think I went with equivalent of a week of clothes for 4 months in my backpacking backpack, and came back with my bag stuffed with clothes, fabric, saris, and art. Delhi IS cold in December, so you might need to pack some bulkier things than I did.

  13. joeymoore Says:

    India has amazing creativity in the field of art and design. That amazing work can be seen in these beautiful quilts which is just stunning and eye-catching. I am fond of buying different designed quilts and love to gift them as well.

  14. sonia jain Says:

    We are suppliers of kantha quilts,throws and pillows etc. we are based in delhi, india and would be happy to email you our product range if it is of interest to you

    sonia jain

  15. Inde-Art Design House Says:

    If you like solid wood furniture and accessories from India!

    Than check us out. (

    We are located in the east side of down town Toronto in Leslieville.

    In addition we also just launched our reclaimed wood and hand carved kitchen cabinet line at the Interior Design Show.

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