Thursday, November 20, 2014

Mantra By Shalini James!

Being an ardent  lover of Indian textiles,just couldn't hold back my self from sharing the Indian By choice by "Mantra Design Studio"

Mantra Design studio is a venture by Shalini James.Indian textiles and textile crafts are used optimally to create a chic look.Mantra is distinguised by its sense of design and Indian rustic colours.

I would always go with what their Mantra is :)-Yes it is  a lovely potpourri of beautiful Indian textiles in silhouettes that are sometimes traditional, sometimes contemporary and mostly, a unique mix of both!They have long jackets, angrakhas, embroidery, hints of Zari, textures, Kalamkaris, Mashru, a touch of velvet, stoles with frayed edges, printed pants, anarkalis, layering, palazzos, soft printed muls and so on .. a collage of fabrics is what it is! However, still, very Indian by choice!

They were in news recently coz they designed the sarees for the school of dance" Mamangam "By the film person Rima Kallingal.


Mamangam ,the dance school at Kochi and the person behind it..the stunning "Rima Kallingal"

more mantra for handloom sarees

stunning collage by Mantra for the look book

this work is yet to reach the online stores:)-

Shop for Mantra here

All Images form Pinterest and Courtesy @ Mantra..

All images conceptualised shot @ Mantra.
Ask their permission before you use it anywhere else!

Monday, November 17, 2014

Thank You!

Encouragements,Good words and Blessings take you a long way:)-Its been a learning experience for me so far with my small time blog which just started as a result of decorating a small home in the Northern India and a love for photographing the small things at home. Greatful to all who have been reading the posts and loving my images.

Thankful for including my blog "Celebrations Decor" in "Hindustan Times estates" as one among India's top Interior Decor Blogs.

House of Kotwara@ Muzaffar Ali !

Rajah Muzaffar Ali is an Indian filmmaker, a fashion designer, a poet, an artist, a music-lover, a revivalist, and a social worker. He belongs to a royal Muslim Rajput family of Kotwara. Umrao Jaan,Anjuman,Zooni,Jaanisaar,Aagaman are all his movies.He is also a National Film Awardee too.The filmaker has also been presented with the Rajiv Gandhi National Sadbhavana Award!

Sita Wadhwani of Vogue says in her article 

The "House of Kotwara" is an interesting study in craft, education, culture and humanism promoted by art in all its forms including music and film, and couture is just one of them."

House of Kotwara has interested me in many levels.. There are an amazing list of things that set the mood in this historical Haveli. Old reading glasses,Urdu typewriter,collection of historical plates. The formal living area with ornate ceiling, arched doorways, old shaama dans and antiques, mirrors and portraits, nostalgic reminders of a beautiful historical time. The stunning dining room retains its old world ambience given a contemporary touch with its rust coloured walls.

Vogue says:

"The evolution of Meera and Muzaffar Ali's couture label House of Kotwara is also the story of the region of Awadh (an area in the centre of modern-day Uttar Pradesh) and the preservation of its people and its designs, while spanning a continuity of traditions in craft techniques from other regions with royal legacies, such as Kashmir, Hyderabad, Kerala and Bengal.

This season, the Alis offer a collection of classic and conservative bridal wear embellished with pearls, zardozi, gota and chikan embroidery, creating an intriguing collage of textures on Kotwara's signature ankle-length striped palazzo pants, lehengas, shararas, saris and choghas.

There's an ethereal quality to Meera's work as both a designer and architect, which meets the artistic flair of her husband and long-time collaborator, acclaimed filmmaker, poet, artist and present Raja of Kotwara Muzaffar Ali. I love the understated style in their home,which is so like me at our home.Spacious coridors covered with locally made dhurries, a palana in one bedroom.

This home is a testimony to their creative approach to restoration. While one wouldn't want to shift the layers of  a thousand years of history, their renovations, their controlled use of contemporary  colours and remodelling of artefacts for alternate usage, have made this home a bench mark of stylish yet sensitive restoration.ensuring that future generations will not forget the elegance and values of this era.

Courtesy: Text:Mridula Sharma, Photographs:Amit Mehra
Courtesy: Inside Outside Magazine

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Quirky and Wordly Apartment of Jean Francois Lesage!

A  marvellous  empire controlled from a sprawling bungalow in Chennai and  that's the story of Vastrakala and Jean -Francois Lesage!

Vastrakala, which is Sanskrit for 'the art of textiles', was started in 1993 in Chennai by Frenchman Jean-Francois Lesage.

 Jean-François Lesage a third-generation embroiderer of the Parisbased House of Lesage, which was acquired by Chanel in 2002. His father, Francois Lesage, was a famous embroiderer, whose work was sought after by the top fashion houses.
Vastrakala products are not available off the shelf. They are custom designed for demanding customers who are well-versed in luxury and do not think twice about spending on whatever brings out their individuality. Vastrakala's client roster is spangled with names of the rich and famous. Its works adorn buildings such as the 19th-century Opera de Monte Carlo in Monaco and the 17th-century Chateau Vaux le Vicomte near Paris, venue of steel magnate L.N. Mittal's daughter's wedding in 2004. Closer to home, they embellish the State Dining Room at Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi.

Vastrakala in Chennai with just six artisans.Then he had to invest in training, where the focus was on quality, discipline and the use of the right tools.He adds that they also learned various stitching techniques and the use of newer materials.(as reported by business today)

 Earlier Jean-François Lesage used to live above the embroidery workshop he runs in an Arts and Crafts–style house in Chennai, India. As the business grew, however, space became an issue. “One day, I found myself with craftsmen embroidering just outside my bedroom door,” he recalls. “I figured it was time to move before they ended up working on my bed!”
The spiral staircase that leads from the mezzanine to the rooftop was installed by the building’s architect, Basu John; an embroidered-velvet panel remains on its original embroidery frame, the Indian model of an English villa is 19th century, a 17th-century bronze oil lamp sits atop a 19th-century table, and the mirror is a Lesage design.(excerpt from Elledecor)

His walls are mainly white, and the floors are a dark green slate from Rajasthan. There is also a certain sobriety in the choice of objects. The majority of the furnishings he surrounds himself with were acquired in India. He avows a love of portraits, collects votive temple lamps from the 17th to 19th centuries, and has a host of statuettes offered as fertility gifts at religious festivals.Many acquisitions have interesting stories attached. An armchair in the living room originally belonged to the Madras high court, which transported itself to the mountains during the sweltering summer months. “It has screws everywhere so it can be completely dismantled,” he points out. Nearby are a pair of terracotta temple statues, bought from a wellborn antiques dealer who resisted social pressures to open her own gallery, since it is taboo in the state of Tamil Nadu for women from important families to have careers.

 In the courtyard, a wood cage holds Lesage’s cockatiel, Victor; the granite pillars and large-scale photograph of a Punjabi woman are both 19th century, and the Indian wood wall sculpture dates from the 18th century.

 n another bedroom, the rosewood bed and wall behind it are covered with re-embroidered Indian textiles, and the 1960s lamps were designed for film shoots.
An early-20th-century English table and a 1960s rosewood chair with a pillow embroidered with a pattern inspired by Jackson Pollock in a guest room; the photographs are by Sebastian Cortés, and the drawing is by Agathe de Bailliencourt.

A cabinet in the dining room holds 18th- and 19th-century fertility figurines, a painting by Lesage’s sister, Marion, and a photograph of fashion designer 

                        Produced by Anita Sarsidi; Photography by Richard Powers

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Wisdom,light and love !

 Deepavali and the days leading to them were frenzy at home,cleaning,shining and polishing.There wasn't anything in particular i wanted to buy except the flowers.

Marigolds as usual took the centre stage.It was  sheer beauty and happiness to see the golden orange marigolds shining in all corners on the day of Deepavali.
Kantha bedspreads became table spreads and dull oranges went well with the carnations.Dull golds made another excellent combination on the table and the napkins were small rectangular cloths with golden border.The cheer of the Yellows of the gerberas and the fragrance from the incense holder on the day of dhanteras is still in spirits..Hope all of you enjoyed this year and as the saying goes,the wait for the next year starts!

colourful cushions formed the backdrop

prayers and blessings from above

a view

as it was dusk

paisley prints and carnations

dull oranges

on the table

days leading to diwali

dhanters in gold shimmer

The best that happened this year was an opportunity to feature a diwali article with images from my home in the "Good Homes Magazine"

Images and Ideas :Lakshmi Arvind.Please dont take images without permission!

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