Handmade dolls impress at this HSR Layout home

Handmade dolls impress at this HSR Layout home

A family specialises in crafting at least half the display at home

A miniature replica of the Chennai airport from 40 years ago.


A village scene displayed here
features a temple, school and library. 


A ‘Dances of India’ theme that includes dolls of
Bharatanatyam, Mohiniyattam, and Kathak dancers.

Most displays for Dasara ‘bombe habba’ showcase traditional dolls and toys bought from stores. Sridhar Ramu’s home at HSR Layout is

special — it showcases dolls made at home. The display this year is spread across an entire floor of his house in 3rd Sector. Sridhar, his mother Pankajam, wife Chitra and daughter Samhita, discuss themes every year, and begin work about 10 months in advance.

This year’s display includes a traditional setup on five steps, portraying stories about five deities. It also includes a miniature replica of the Chennai airport from 40 years ago. “My father-in-law got the airport made-to-scale by a carpenter and sent it to us. We added dolls and other elements,” says Sridhar, a financial consultant. 


Pankajam, Chitra, Sridhar
Ramu and Samhita.

A village scene features a temple, school and library. More than half the display is handcrafted, while the other half is carefully curated. Pankajam, an 82-year-old, buys the heads for the dolls from a store in Raja Market, and sources waste fabric from tailor shops.

“The heads are made of plastic, cloth, and ceramic. She makes bodies with fabric and cotton. She researches their designs and I take printouts,” he explains.

The family has explored a new theme each year for 18 years. “Visitors are curious about what is new each year,” he says.

Doll lovers can see the display by calling 98860 31963.