Friday, October 27, 2017

Diwali Party entwined with South Indian Theme

Diwali is gone but the afterglow remains. I am one of those who are unabashedly into the festivals and striving throughout the year for it. Since we are done with Diwali this year my brain has started making the leaps for “what’s next?” Though for now, I am still unwrapping myself from all the festive hustle and bustle. 
On the other hand, we still have lined up Diwali parties that I am looking forward to enjoy. Since I read many of my readers are also in the same phase of parties after Diwali, thought to share few frames from our this year’s Diwali party. Given a chance I am always ready to set the stage for hospitality. Since Diwali was clued in with our south Indian themed potluck party at home, it was quite easy for me to execute.  
Generously wide sitting area on our bay window in our walk-out basement is just right for a quite chat or solitary read as the bank of windows wash the space with bright light from outside. But I had better plans to use this space ;). The corner now acts as a center table and is a platform of my creativity. It now helps me add my personal touch and I play around for any party or special occasion by changing the look every time differently. I have planned my fair share of parties here and have become quite the hostess if I say so myself ;).
With all the hues closely related in bright background of classic marigolds, the scene automatically supports a mix of traditional and south Indian touch. Since we reside in a country where yearly flow of marigolds is quite impossible, I decided to gift myself these strings from India. Hubs dear, who often circles around the globe, bought them home right in time before Diwali. Trust me, having a supportive husband is a huge boon. With 'décor' being a shared passion of both of us, it is quite easy for me to convenience him to put up with my décor tantrums ;).
For Diwali dressing, style choices are myriad, what ever bling you throw in or you have in home will greatly influence the overall ambience. Superlative lose their luster when it comes to my brass and I know my friends have a major meltdown every time they appear in any of my parties. Hence, I didn't shy away to scatter them fully with some Diwali diyas for some pretty flickering flames. Though, most of the pieces here are heirlooms and antique store finds. The jug housing flowers is a real charmer that came home for only $6 from an antique dealer this summer.
Not only the décor was a stunning sight for my clamoring crowd  to take a selfie but our South Indian menu (Idli-Sambhar, Vada-Sambhar) and attire were equally enticing. Ending the post with the picture of 'us' donning the 'South Indian' look. Oh yes, 'jhumkis', 'gajara', 'bindi' 'bali', I took care of every tiny detail while dressing but I think hubs dear especially rocked the South Indian attire in 'veshti', what say? Along with 'Jimikki Kamal' dance moves and few playful games we ended our perfect soiree.  
Hope you can jot down few notes of inspiration from here for your Diwali party , either this year or next year. Until we meet again, stay connected on my Facebook page or Instagram feed for more décor ideas. You all have a wonderful weekend, toodles!  

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Festive ready home (Diwali - Part 2)

I usually get décor hiccups for any festival but for people who know me would nod against it to say that isn't obvious. With an array of enchanting pieces we own, I don't need a better excuse than Diwali to deck the home with my brass galore. My all-brass route is carried forward in our Diwali -II too. After throwing the cyber gates open for you dear readers, to reveal our festive entrance (I am so thankful and happy beyond words with the response of our entrance décor, thank you lovely people) you are invited to take a peek at the festive touches in our living and family rooms. Savour the brass, smell the fresh flowers and enjoy this impeccable and uber stylish appearance of our brass, on this Diwali.
Just like every year, Ganeshas are taking the center stage on our coffee table this year also but in a fresh setting. Flowers, candles and brass...each element earns its place visually here. Impromptu grouping of more brass at the corner of the room flatters the style of entire vignette on the coffee table. With my brass at its best, I always hear the murmurs and sprinkling of intrigue in our guests :) and why not, it’s the time of the year when I long for accolades by all means. 
I love playing around with my accessories and it often makes me wonder how things start to gather up when I create a vignette. I run in all directions being excited and anxious around the home to gather the correct accessories. And the results after few trial and error combinations is a purer delight. Does it happen to you?
I have been craving to try something different on this fertile place to enliven this fireplace mantel space and with no rule approach this Diwali I came up with this. Sometimes a little enhancement is all that is required to convert a corner from functional to fanciful. With Ganesha being an anchor object,  this corner for now is updated with various heights.
Try making a grouping of small items in a fertile corner or space of your home. Elevate objects within the group adding different heights and play around layering with accessories. Trust me; it is actually so easy that you can whip one up on any bare floor in no time.  
Mingling great styles that is flexible and constantly evolving keeps the décor alive.  Small details of flickering lights can add a powerful impact on any corner. Don’t shy away to try diverse forms of votive holder in one frame if you ever run out of your Diwali diyas. Also, leaning a frame or covering up with a bright runner against a wall has always been a ‘win-win’ for me to uplift the entire look for me.  
Flowers are championing fresh and unconventional approach in all vignettes. Here is the closer look at all the ones that I used freely mixing unexpectedly in every vignette. The flower need of this season has been taken care by all home grown flowers. The bright and most B-E-A-U-T-I-F-U-L roses in the urli are graciously given to me by a very dear friend.
As you know, I drain every last bit of my flowers and I almost didn't had a heart to throw away those beautiful petals of the fallen roses hence I used them floating in the brass plate along with more candles until they survived :) 
As a part of Diwali celebration, we spend lot of time indoor with the company of close friends and having a communal space soaked with festive appropriate touches accurately conjure a touch of nostalgia and pleasure. Here is our prettified corner in a family room. With a bright kutchhi runner, used as a backdrop on the couch, it strengthens the point of focus in the room.
Unlike every year's blogpost on rangoli I shared my this year's creation a wee bit early for you all to inspire and create one in time for your home. If you missed it on my social it is! As a true ‘Ganesha’ fan, we always have his presence in every décor and this year's rangoli is also not an exception. Since tackling the dusty rangoli colors is not my forte, we use two simple ingredients (rice and food colors) to make our rangoli every year. To personalize the design, I threw in some craft mirrors in the design.

My readers have a mild obsession with our chalkboard in the house and why not, it is my undisputed decor accessory for any festival. Our artist daughter always comes to my rescue when it comes to highlighting it for any season. Winding up this post of our home which is welcoming and festive ready with her ‘Diwali Creation’. Hope these lush festive ideas will inspire you to implement few Diwali touches at your end also.

Gobble up countless pieces of ‘Mithai’ this Diwali with many laughs along the way with your family and friends. Signing out wishing you all heap of joy and prosperity, until we meet again, enjoy Diwali, toodles!

Monday, October 16, 2017

Diwali Decked Entrance (Diwali Part 1)

Not that our home needs help in the looking good department but this Diwali surely does wonders. I have already started to hit the ground running for Diwali but before we invite our first guests for Diwali it is my yearly ritual to invite you (my dear reader) to our home where festive touches will greet you at every turn. Come on in, welcome and stay a while.
Our entrance is already a stunning sight. Serving here the major pop of color is our new Benjamin Moore's OXFORD GOLD wall which brings out the festive look effortlessly. To typify my style and choice for the festival of lights I have chosen all brass route because I believe in doing something I know is going to be a hit and brass surely does that magic in my décor. 
We did not buy any festive ephemera for Diwali this year (okay, except few red t-light candles to go with my theme). Instead, best suited tucked away pieces are combined with complimentary accessories to up the game at our entrance. Every shiny vase housing flowers is bought from an antique dealer this summer and many other accessories on the console dates back to my school years. And you know already...these gorgeous paintings are the best gift given by our artist daughter.
Here is the final look, the warm and welcoming spirit of Diwali is aced naturally without breaking a sweat.  With the fistful amount of candles and sparkling clean brass (tamarind is my best friend when it comes to rubbing all my brass) this corner quintessentially reflects the traditional tone of the season. 
How much is too much brass? It is raining brass at my end and boy, did they step out in their finest. I often wonder if it is possible to be born with a keen love for brass threaded in my DNA? These brass pieces enable me to express my evolving décor style in a unique way every time I bring them in. Rustling up the existing ingredients for an inviting setting always works for me, and that's what I did ;).
This season, sparkle comes imbued in all our heirloom pieces. This Diwali, I have surrounded ourselves  with the things that have meaning so that our home tells a story. All the pots housing the flowers in this corner are heirloom pieces which belong to my great grandfather that I proudly own. So thankful to my mom who handed me over these treasures on my last visit to India along with many other pieces that I will cherish forever and hopefully pass it on to my kids.
I love to surprise the guests adorning the home with festive décor through out and even in the places where you wouldn't expect. With brass making waves on the décor frontier this dull corner at the end of the staircase has been revamped with new styling this year. This jumble of my brass will not only offer a moment of pause for my guests but it will also let me deposit that applause in my compliments account :).

Hope these corners have intrigued you enough to know what lies ahead in the living and family room, well, my little self is running around in all directions with all the hurly burly of Diwali but promise to be back soon to crack open the rest of the decor in next post  in mean while, you may go here and here to see Diwali Decked yesteryear at my end. My Facebook and Instagram accounts are equally enticing to get you Diwali ready. Until we meet again, eat those Diwali goodies and enjoy the festivities, toodles!

Friday, October 13, 2017

Diwali Exchange - An exchange of Creativity

It is the time of the year when the brain is in top gear and we are all busy unspooling our minds to take things up a notch this festive season. But when it comes to our home décor, we may go an extra mile and throw in some clever touches and glamorous effects to be a total show-off about. And just because everyone defines style in own personal way, I requested the experts, turned myself to the pros and tapped into the minds of the most talented décor divas and avid readers of my passion stories to share my space today and be a part of our ‘Diwali Exchange’ post.

Portraits of their lovely spaces with diverse style, colors, accoutrements and ambience will exemplify how small personal touches can bring charm to make your home look welcoming and festive ready this season. Go ahead deep dive into the post and be assured-it will be worth it.
Padma from Padzdecor
North Carolina, USA
Brass is threaded in Padma's DNA just like me :). With an enviable amount of brass (her brass always quickens my heartbeat) Padma has conjured a look of glamour and elegance. Along with her gracious creativity, the finest materials like metallic brass and glossy diyas complete her Diwali vignettes. 
I am one of those unlucky one who doesn't own any heirloom. Recently my parents gave away all their antique brass stuff but that didn't stop to own and make my own collection. All of my brass is bought in from Bengaluru and various craft melas. Since all the figurines are bought in, I may not have stories to share but I surely know how to weave new ones. Goddess Saraswati is posing the right stroke in the company of tea light holder chandelier. I love making these impromptu corners around the home which adds much needed oomph of the festival. Another intricately detailed Goddess Saraswati in brass is taking the center stage here in this vignette in the company of freshly bloomed fall mums. The vignette is brought to life by perfectly teaming with sparkly brass diyas. 
 Ontario, Canada

A lover of all forms of art, design and photography, Shilpa is a photography enthusiast and I am a big fan of her soulful and signature style images that keeps getting featured on different platforms of social media.
For me, Diwali evokes lots of wonderful memories just like it does for many Indians.  Hence miss being back home in India even more than usual.   
I always try to create a festive mood at home for the family, especially for the kids during Diwali by way of following family traditions, preparing festive sweets/snacks, decking up the house with lots of diays, so they can  have fond memories of their own when they grow up.
Personally, I think there's nothing more beautiful than the combination of brass, lights and flowers to adorn one's home the traditional way. It creates instant ambience and positive vibe.

Texas, USA

Self-proclaimed home decor diva, who loves to adorn her home and even as a child she was deeply into home décor. Ramya starkly believes that a home is a personification of its residents. She takes all efforts and spends at least a trifling portion of her evening rearranging her vignettes, which she thinks, is therapeutic.
We start off Diwali with first offering to the supreme lord of intellect and wisdom, flowers are an integral part of every celebrations, the man of the house never refuses to overload us with flowers during festivities

In the entryway we have an urli filled with flowers from our garden and the brass lamps are from mother in law who gave me about three dozen lamps so I can play around the house bringing the needed blink during festive season. The peacock lamp is from my mom’s wedding trousseau.
The trio as we call them Lakshmi-Ganapathi-Saraswathi, any festival or occasion my mom had a picture of the trio and I took her footsteps and here we have ours adorning the coffee table in the formal living.
We ingest as much desi influence as possible at home so the kids get exposed and take in as much as possible. Our loving Krishna, who is an antique store find here in Texas, is totting up to the Diwali Spirit in a royal manner with a horse and an elephant. Also many other corners are similarly adorned with Deepa Lakshmi, Ganapati, terracotta lamps and Lord Natraj in Diwali spirit around the home.

Anupama R
Banglore, India
A doctor by profession and a décor lover by passion is sharing Diwali vignettes in a brand new avatar of moody and evocative photography. Her pictures are bold, experimental and seek to express her distinct personality.  
Love what you do and do what you love is the mantra when it comes to my décor style. A far cry from the traditional use, the collection of small brass diyas are adorned with flowers in them.
A burst of color thrown in with Indian touch is a look I seek while revamping any corner. Flowers always add warm and welcoming spirit while boosting the drama.
During festivities, I take creative freedom and let myself loose in discovering new décor paths. Gracefully arranged 'dashavatar' frame here is taking the highlight with the gleaming of fancy diyas and shiny rangoli.

With that we come to an end of our post and I am sure you will be searching an excuse to throw a party now with these ideas and inspirations in your back pocket. I truly hope these designer tips and tricks will aid to add that extra drama quotient to your existing décor. I relished the entire process of communicating to these divas for building this post and making another year of Diwali Exchange post happen out of our own busy schedules of Diwali preparations. I am grateful to all of you for opening your heart and home for this post, thank you lovelies.

Signing out inserting the best of Diwali vibes, wishing you all a very happy festivities ahead. Do circle back next week for a post to see Diwali decked up corners of our home. Until we meet again, stay connected on Instagram or Facebook, toodles! 

(You may head straight here for last year's Diwali Exchange post.)

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

A Season to Shine (Diwali Flatlays)

It is almost the season to shine. Diwali is just as much about flexing your decorating muscles as it is about cooking all the 'Ladoos' & "Mithais" this festive season. And of course I know more time we devote mulling over varying decorative options, the greater creative scope for our home. Hence with the fanciest pieces of all I took some freedom to put my stamp on flat styling these Diwali goodies. So lets get ready to decorate together for the season known for the classics, traditions and heirlooms with some new trends thrown in. Enjoy this year a different take than Diwali Tablescapes that I did here and here

Decor style should always be evolving but while building on your décor scenes- be both original and organic. All you need is to refresh your options and palette with the same pieces that you have been using every season.
Subtle festive elements like floating flowers and the arrangement of unexpected adornments are always an easy way to add extra detail that is sure to give your home a festive look. If you are unseasoned in the fine art of décor, bring in the fresh flowers. It is the safest and easiest way to work or win any style. Colorful runners are definitely your best bet to flaunt timeless Diwali style. No runner? No problem, those fancy dupattas and brocade sarees will look equally elegant when fashioned into a runner. 
Sometimes simply reworking with the same pieces in different ways can get you a whole new look. This year, I am crushing hard on these bright Diwali diyas that I fetched on my last visit to India, they look just as fabulous even when they are not lit. This minimalist, glamorous and uncluttered display is a darling infusion of traditional accessories with some modern elements (a lotus candle and a lantern) thrown in. 
Red and gold is the classic look that never dips out of the style in any season. This particular ensemble perfectly marries that statement. You all know, nothing makes me giddier than the glint of gold and this flat lay is a visual knock out dressed top to bottom in timeless brass gold with a pop of red. 
The collision of different shapes and shades can make a look scream ‘wow” rather than whisper. Seemingly incompatible green and orange combination here creates a dynamic retro look. Dainty motifs in the same color are blending well together from both the 'bajoths' in this vignette. You may test out different styling of the same pieces and pair well with other items. By all means, I pat myself on the back for buying this lotus votive this summer from an antique show. It has been my that ‘same’ piece that I have over used, re-used in every single vignette with of course different styling techniques. 
Opting for little feminine accents here and why not? Diwali is a time where I find myself going in many fun directions for my décor. Experiment with past season items in a new look. The rangoli pieces here were used last year here in a totally different styling. Same goes with my bangle votive holders that I used last year’s Diwali Tablescape here You may re-invent the decorative wheel and add some dramatic statement pieces from your jewellery box to your coffee table that can sum up your persona in some way. Find that look and marry it with your décor. Gather up all your brooches in a photo frame or garland a figurine using your showiest neck piece. Possibilities are endless.   
Take plunge with right accessories like flowers, diyas, and brass. For extra brownie points, use all three at once and may be you will be thrilled with the dramatic outcome. Here is my perfectly teamed vignette garnished with an array of pretty gold and glitter that highlights the glamourous side of the season. 

Hope these pretty scintillating scenes from our home inspire you enough to revamp your home for your guests and family this Diwali. Above are the foolproof equations of bright ethnic ensembles that can be outfitted on any flat surfaces in your home. My inspirational Pinterest, Facebook and Instagram boards are equally loaded with ideas and inspiration to get you Diwali ready, so do take a peek. 
In addition to this post, I have few more Diwali posts lined up. Do check out a post here that is packed in inspiration for your to drool over as few of my favorite décor divas took over this year for our Diwali Exchange post. Until we meet again, enjoy the time of the year and all the hubbub, toodles.