Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Desi style.

Irrespective of  occasion, scrapbooks and journals make perfect gifts. The  thought and effort that goes into making a memory book is a great way to express your  love. Above all there is no better way to preserve cherished photographs.  Have gifted scrapbooks to dear ones for a long time now.  Recently making one  for a  dear couple in the family, who had just completed  50 years of wedded bliss, I tried adding a  desi twist!

Bling Bling?
For festive occasions, weddings  and the like,  try  rich Indian layouts with the help of tikkis, Gota patti, zardosi and embroidery laces and printed wrapping papers. I tried it  for a few pictures from a wedding procession ages ago, and relived the moment in true north Indian barat  style all over again!

Go Bollywood!
When in doubt about any thing desi,  the easiest way forward is  to draw inspiration from Kitschy and colorful Bollywood. Here I reference  just the name of a popular film as a cover for a mini book for a sweet love story, but you can go the whole hog with disco colors and bolly pop layouts..

Hand Made Accents
A few pages for loving grand parents came alive with cute accents made using left over paper and embellishments.    For one of them pictured here, I used a tiny teddy bear ornament that had come off my child's hair clip. What made it really special was that the hair clip itself was a present to her  from her granny!

Vernacular Script
Some times store brought sentiments will just not do . Try handwritten script in desi vernacular for a personal touch, one which dadi/ Paati/ Bebe is sure to appreciate!  I had my kids write the same personally here:

Block Prints?
When running out of paper is a good thing. You can  then just reach for a sheet of paper in an old notebook something, and go over it with a block print stamp!  I did mine, with an office stamp pad and a tiny wooden block:

More ideas from all you avid scrapbookers out there will be appreciated. Do drop me a line!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Store in focus : Magnolia, Worli.

A classic case of seven year itch this. What else to call lawyer and design enthusiast Maulika Gandhi's decision to hang her black solicitor's coat after seven long years in the profession in favor of the business woman's hat? And she did it with panache too!

Maulika's labor of love is located just off  E moses road in Worli, Mumbai. Amongst a cluster of odd looking buildings in a nondescript lane stands the white, contemporary white facade of Magnolia, the home decor Atelier.

I have stumbled into the store, camera and gear in hand by accident. However it does not  take too long for me to get busy chasing beautiful things in Maulika's store .

A single-seater upholstered in cheery  yellow floral fabric graces the sunny entrance of the store.

At Magnolia the emphasis is on  classic pieces of furniture  and handcrafted objects d'art.  Passion for decor is a key element in designing stock according to Maulika, for whom the entire venture is a leap of faith to begin with. And the collection mirrors that preoccupation very well.

A quirky setting of up cycled, wood and tire furniture 

I notice an array of rough, up cycled  furniture, ideal for a patio or quirky  informal seating areas at home. "We design and create a majority of our furniture. Most if the up cycled pieces are created by us and the main aim is to re-use mundane and ordinary things and turn them into something unique. Plus we used a lot of recycled wood such as teak, sleeper wood etc. This way everyone can do their part in buying eco-friendly products without compromising on the design or aesthetics of their home" explains Maulika.

Another delightful find is the upholstery fabric used by the design team at Magnolia. Scraps of jewel toned Patola sewn together using kantha stitches. A vibrant and interesting touch for that  odd sofa or a set of chairs .

 A sofa upholstered with a patchwork of kantha embellished silk fabric

According to Maulika, using kantha on Patola offers a way of integrating modern living with old handicraft techniques. 

Talking of her future plans Maulika says : 

"Magnolia is a year and half old now. We are still spreading the word about our  flagship Worli store. We have a tremendous response from customers and we definitely have some expansion plans in the pipeline in the making" 

A few other interesting finds at Magnolia among many  also worth mentioning :

Digitally printed home decor and accents  add a dash of whimsy to the house India style and make excellent gifts too.

Vibrant colors combined with geometric prints marry the  contemporary  to the classic.

Stoneware and 
ceramic from 
Auroville  every home can do with....

Where :

83/C, Hansraj Pragji Building, 
Off. Dr. E Moses Rd., 
Worli Naka, Mumbai - 18.
Tel: +91 22-24951020 / 21 / 22

Check Magnolia out online.


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