Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Going Back to the Roots (Home Tour)

Our next home tour takes us all the way to Edmonton (Canada). A couple's yearning for their roots, transforms a mundane builder grade home into a haven with a traditional Indian aesthetic. Pavitra and Siva's home "Anugraha" (translating to mean Divine Blessings) is everything that you would want an India-inspired home to be. Having worked in the financial services industry for over three years, Pavitra is currently taking a break to enjoy some downtime. Being a creatively inclined person, she keeps herself constantly engaged in DIY  projects, home styling and painting. Siva on the other hand is an Electrical Inspector and in his spare time is always happy to be Pavitra's handy manny for all her decor projects. He is also equally passionate about photography and Classical Indian Music and Dance. 

The couple tapped into their Indian roots for inspiration to tackle their interiors dilemma. The result is a home that is warm and welcoming with oodles of personally meaningful style. Pavitra had to say about going the desi way to decorate her home, "Our tradition and culture being very important to us, we wanted our Indian-ness to be reflected in our beautiful abode. Another reason why this was so important to us was to educate our future generations and leave behind a legacy so that they do not have a lost sense of identity when it comes to Indian culture. For example,  instead of the epic stories being restricted to only pages in a book we made the effort to convey it in the form of art through the Ramar Pattabhishekam Painting in the dining room.We also absorbed fragments of inspiration from my mom, Pinterest and The East Coast Desi to create a space that reflected us."
Come right this way to begin our tour...... In the entryway, a mango wood bench from Pier I Imports offers guests a place to sit comfortably as they tug off boots and shoes. Adding welcoming vibes to the space is a tall wooden standing Buddha, a pair of Thai angels and aurli that is always filled with fresh floating flowers. A touch of South Indian flair is added with the Eka Padha Lakshmi Tanjore Painting, embellished with brass bells on either side.
Every corner of Pavitra and Siva's home is steeped in interesting stories. Pavitra tells me, this lovely traditional Indian corner is the most adored corner of the living room. A collection of glistening, hand picked brass artifacts, potted plants and one of a kind Krishna statue pays homage to the traditional South Indian roots of the home owners.    
A closer look at the most revered piece in the house, lovingly called "The Laddu Krishna". Dressed in a short dhoti standing atop a lotus, this statue as you can see has the most intricate details to it. The Krishna Sculpture is a handmade Panchalokha cast by the artists of South India using the lost wax process, a skill passed on for generations since the Chola period. This statue exhibits the full beauty, elegance, grace and high artistry that is trademark of chola era molds.
Beside the Krishna is the ‘Ashtamangalyam set’ purchased during the couple's visit to Guruvayur Temple. (More on the Ashtamangalyam set - it is a portable tray holding sacred objects some of which are the lamp,  traditional Kerala kindi – vessel with spout for water, mirror replica, camphor/vermillion holder, bell and urli. All in all, it is believed to be auspicious and bring good luck to its owners.)
More from Pavitra, as she talks in depth of the influences on her decor style:
  • "Our backgrounds and our personalities influences the decor style in our home. Hailing from Bengaluru with traditions from Thanjavur, I wanted keep the 'Indian-ness' intact depsite us having to adopt a new country as home. As for Siva, he hails from a Palakkad tradition family, so we made sure to introduce the Kerala aspect too into our decor.
  • Color is an integral component of how we experience the world around us. As we conceptualized  the interiors for our home, we were sure of the fact that color would play a vital role in the interiors. 
  • I've always been fascinated by my mom’s decor in our Bengaluru home. Brass was always an essential part of the decor. And now I am here in Edmonton taking cues from my mom’s style. I am more than fortunate to own heirloom brass artifacts passed on to me by my mom. 
  • Last but not the least, I love vintage decor. I often go shopping for vintage brass and antiques while vacationing in India. I'm also all for handmade and hence a lot of the pieces at home were collected during our travels from local artisan markets.
The living room is the couple's favorite room in the house. After a long day at work, this is where they unwind. Being lovers of classical music and dance, the couple wanted this passion together with their undying love for Indian culture and tradition to be reflected in the interiors. Imparting symmetry is a pair of floating shelves flanking either side of the fireplace, with a collection of brass Ganesha playing different musical instruments and the other shelf displaying the majestic Nataraj and the enchanting Narthana (seen below in the picture). Color creeps into this space by means of colored cushions and cut blooms in vases.
More brass vignettes from around the home - A close up of the the divine ‘Oonjal Vinayagar’ paired with the glorious ‘‘Annam Vizhaku’ and a collection of tradional Kerala brass vessle called the Kindi. 
The Traditional Tanjore Painting of ‘Vastu Krishnar’ is engulfed in the warm glow from the crystal light from Pier 1 Imports. Another wonderful touch to this corner is the hanging brass lamp. 
In the dining area,  the magnificent Ramar Pattabhishekam Mural Painting steals the show. This particular painting was a custom order that Pavitra and Siva got made from Babeesh Aneela (a leading Mural Artist). They had an original painting that graces the walls of the an ancient Shiva temple at Kottayam, Kerala replicated by the artist. The original painting in the temple is several centuries old. Balancing the painting on either side is a corner shelf, showing off more of their brass collections and a golden pothos, cascading the entire length and breathe of the window. To add more Indian flair to the scene, Pavitra brought out her Copper collection.
Sigh!All that glistening copper!!! 
There is something so wonderful about a Pathos that has gone wild!
A closer look at the brass collections adorning the shelf in the dining space. 

Here are 3 decor mantras that Pavitra swears by: 
  • "A little sheen never hurt anyone - include brass, always classy and timeless. 
  • “Happiness is watching your plant grow”- Adding plants to the decor, adds not just beauty but also gives inner joy as you watch them grow. 
  • “Handmade items are made with love and have their own story” - Yes! I love anything that is handcrafted. The biggest inspiration to my decor was to use handcrafted pieces. I make sure that I buy handicrafts and support craftsmanship in India."

A corner of Pavitra's kitchen with more heirloom brass treasures occupying a place of pride and making the otherwise unexciting kitchen scene shiny and lustrous:) 
The kitchen island too has the special Indian touch! Bharani (pickle jar) is used as a vase.  A terracotta mini-hut, lamp and a colorful tie up add the necessary color and whimsy to this space. 

The other favorite room in the home is the "bonus room" that is just off the landing. Diwan style seating and sunny hues make up this a happy informal space. Pillows in contrasting shade of blue, add the extra punch of color. The couple spend their time here either chit-chatting with friends or making the most of some "me" time to catch up on reading with a steaming cup of coffee. Other finishing touches to the space include the colorful ottomans, the Chanapatna collectibles and the embroidered curtains.

More prettiness (clockwise from left): A hand-painted Madhubani vase holds a few fresh flowers; a brightly colored hand-painted pashu mask from Kerala; And a blissful Buddha dressing up the pathway to the home.

It is absolutely delightful to see people  stay connected to their roots despite the distance from their homelands. The little extra touches goes a long way in making our everyday living enjoyable. What a joy it's been to collaborate with Pavitra on this feature. I wish the lovely couple the very best !!! 

Happy decorating folks until we meet again!  

(Image Credit/Copyright : Pavitra & Siva. The images may NOT be used for commercial or non-commercial purposes without the prior written permission of Pavitra & Siva and TECD.)

Thursday, September 14, 2017

A Taste for the Exotic (Home Tour)

From the initial glimpses of this home, one is acquainted with the unrivaled aesthetics of its home owners. The owners’ tastes encompass a love for travel, art, textiles and global culture. By the inclusion of treasured décor pieces, judiciously curated art and handpicked furniture, it is evident that the home has a decisive personal identity! Welcome to the stunning Gurgaon home of advertising professional, Sandeep R Inamke. Having lived in Nairobi, Kampala, Dar es Salaam, Mumbai, Bangalore and Pune and traveled the world over, Sandeep’s access to many of the country’s finest arts and crafts, has resulted in quite the "collection"! Having recently moved from Nairobi to India, Sandeep’s family has lived in their current home for a short duration of only 6 months. Within this short span of time, Sandeep and his family have worked their magic wand to create a home that's rich in cultural references, textural contrasts and boasts of cultivated taste for all that is aesthetic and exotic! 
A peek down Sandeep’s foyer reveals a bevy of beautifully curated art and artifacts that pull this narrow yet hard working space together. Taking center stage is an antique Vishnu painting depicting the Vishwarupa Avatar (i.e. Krishna reveals himself as the "Supreme Being" and finally displays his Vishwarupa to Arjuna in the battle of Kurukshetra). Together with a few ceramic pieces, a Buddha bust and a grain container from Congo (the one resembling a crocodile), this space is big on global-desi style. A colorful durrie from Jaipur enlivens the neutrality aspect of this space. A set of vintage Kavadis procured from Sanskriti Lifestyle in Pune, is painted a deep emerald (by Sandeep himself) to add a touch of color and tie in the space together.
Surveying the well-appointed living room, you immediately realize global cultural references in every frame of this space. Art portraying innocent subjects by Uganda painter and sculptor, David Kigozi, brings in oodles of depth and personality to this space. Textiles and beautifully curated pieces on the coffee table further introduce one to Sandeep’s design ideology and his passion for all things vintage and handmade. The one thing that Sandeep did not compromise on, while designing this space is comfort. 

Over to Sandeep as he describes his design style, "From a design perspective am not much into fusion or contemporizing classic designs. Hence maybe a bit of a purist. Having said that, I am not against fusion as long as it is tastefully done with due respect and being sensitive to the original. My approach to interiors being to seamlessly fuse artifacts from different regions/countries together to create something unique. Whether its traditional brass lamps from Maharashtra sitting comfortably with Brass lamps from Kerala, or African masks/artifacts co-existing harmoniously with Indian artifacts. I think the common thread there is all these are traditional hand made artifacts. The real stuff, mostly old pieces hand picked with an eye for details. The outcome is always magical!

Interestingly when I lived in Africa , my African friends used to find my house very Indian and my Indian friends would find my house very Afro. I also love to juxtapose the modern with the traditional as well as different materials. Above all I think I would describe my design sense as Maximalism under control."

I’ve decided to bestow the title of a “Treasure Hunter” upon Sandeep. I mean seriously, look at all the treasures he’s managed to garner over time. Each piece unique and each piece grouped so beautifully, so as to harmoniously cohabit and not contest for attention. It truly is amazing how he's managed to create an individualistic style that is a perfect marriage of traditional and modern.

Talking about the influences on his decor style, Sandeep shares, "The love for things beautiful and authentic was instilled into me by my aunt Sonali Pingale, owner of the décor store Sanskrtiti Lifetsyle (I've featured her extraordinary home right here. So no surprises there as the aesthetic gene runs in the family). Having grown up shopping with her, she has had a huge influence on my personal decor style. Other influences being, browsing through endless pages of Elle Décor and AD (US editions) and various books on ethnic and contemporary interiors. And yes, lately Pinterest and Instagram." On a side note, anyone who knows Sandeep well, will agree that this decor enthusiast thrives on Instagram:)
A wide angle shot of the living room. There are so many tricks that one can learn from this living space. Layering and visual perception are definitely the most significant. The formal vibes of the tufted grey couch (sourced from Wooden Desirez) is diminished by draping it with Indigo textiles from Bangkok and causally tossing throw pillows to soften the look. More textile love can be seen where a console is draped in a royal blue cultural Ghanian fabric called kente. Next, the rug-on-rug trick is very creatively used here. A bold patterned durrie is layered atop a wider wheat colored sisal rug to balance proportions. Pattern is brought in naturally by means of textiles and printed accent chairs from Home Center. Coming to visual perception, effort is made to constantly engage the eye through compositions that keep the eye moving.
Absolutely love the ingenious use of a wine rack from Nairobi used to display Sandeep's collection of Hindu brass figurines. A smattering of fresh blooms and potted green liven up this lovely corner.

If you want to adopt a style that's similar to Sandeep's, here's his list of decor mantras :

  • "More is more ( minimalism is not me). 
  • Buy authentic and handmade pieces. 
  • Constantly experiment. A house should always be a work in progress. 
  • Juxtapose to create something unique yet seamless.
  • Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication."
Bringing in an unexpected element to this space is the zebra hide rug. Now before you'll jump to any conclusion, neither Sandeep nor I, support unethical sourcing of such products. This particular rug came with a certificate claiming no animal was killed for skin! With that being said, I love how it facilitates to transition from the living to the dining and keeps the predominant Indo-African theme intact. (For those of you who spotted the weapons hanging on the far end of the wall - the top one is a spear head from Congo and the lower one being a complete Masia spear).
              
That fantastic South Indian style lady statue is an antique, originally found in old temples of Karnataka. Sandeep spotted this at Sanskriti Lifestyle and lost his heart to this unique find. The Tanjore paintings too were sourced from Sanskriti Lifestyle. Sandeep tells me that these pieces were put up for sale, as the homes that they originally belonged to were being pulled down to accommodate modern day structures. I say, if not for people like Sandeep who love all things vintage and believe in the adage "old is gold", these treasures would be long forgotten......
The Moroccan lamp was a lucky find from Dubai. Sandeep says that it was a nightmare flying with this fragile piece as hand baggage!
Believe me when I say this rustic looking statue of a man riding a horse is made of terracotta!! This almost wood like statue was sourced by Sandeep from Congo.

I just had to know what it was about African decor that drew Sandeep in like a bee, to which he answers discerningly, "At one level it’s extremely contemporary. African art is very bold and raw as against the intricate work found in India. (Here I am not including North African art which is influenced by Asian and Islamic forces). African art is masculine which juxtaposes beautifully with intricate pieces from India / Asia, which are delicate and feminine ( I suspect this observation may kick up a conversation / controversy among my fellow decor enthusiasts:) As for African textiles, whether it’s the Kitenge from East Africa, Kente from Ghana or the mud cloth from Mali, they are all exotic and unique. What's not to love!"
Daggers of Yemen origin were bought from a collector in Dar es Salaam. Sandeep tells me that because of the turmoil that Yemen has had to face, artifacts like these are a rare find  nowadays. To preserve them better, Sandeep decided to have them framed in shadow boxes. A pair of copper busts from Benin together with a rustic bouquet of dried flowers and reed completes this corner that's done up in earthy tones.
Ignoring decor norms in terms of what is fashionable and acceptable, Sandeep has furnished the dining space based on only what complements his family's lifestyle. Dining table from Furniture Republic in New Delhi is mixed with a combination of mid-century modern and transitional style chairs to make an interesting yet comfortable combo. Yet again Sandeep masterfully pairs a contemporary rooster painting by David Kigozi with a traditional Indian Pichwai painting from Sanskriti Lifestyle to add color and life to the walls.
This gorgeous day bed was found in a shop (Odds and Ends) in Nairobi and is now part of the entertainment room. Cushions dressed in Kitenge fabric from Tanzania, bring the folksy touch to this space. Sandeep decided to go with a beaded tribal wall hanging from Nigeria to deck the space above the day bed. The painting resting on the floor is an old and rare litho-print of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj's court sourced from an amazing store dealing in old furniture and artifacts market in Oshiwara (Mumbai). Right above the litho is a Zulu shield that Sandeep picked up from the Rosebank craft market in Johannesburg.
This lovely room belongs to Sandeep's ten year old son. Having grown up in Africa, it is no surprise that he is a huge soccer fan. A soccer statue from Gabon is hung on the wall to showcase his passion for the sport. A colonial style day bed sourced from Sanskriti Lifestyle, works great in this space. A combination of weathered finish photo frames, filled with special memories+art and black and white tribal art panels from Rwanda, makes for an interesting gallery wall. The console at the foot of the bed, is made to look interesting by draping it with reed fabric from Congo and displaying smaller animal marks sourced from a flea market in Johannesburg.
A closer look at a few more interesting corners and one of a kind artifacts (Clockwise from top left) : Porcupine quills from a flea market in Nairobi is neatly tucked into a brass pot; Pan Daan was picked up from Sanskriti Lifestyle; Buddha and Nag Statue from Thailand and the tranquil looking Krishna painting was commissioned art from a Kenya Artist, Ikenya.   
And more pretty corners (Clockwise from top left) :Sandeep is as passionate about at as he is about decor. The Kali painting was infact done by Sandeep himself!!!; The brass pot on the coffee table is an old heirloom piece; Krishna art by Uganda artist - David Kigozi). 


Here's what Sandeep had to share about his passion to collect art, "Am restless when I see blank walls. However art is about knowing where to stop. I believe it’s our prime duty to develop a sense of aesthetic and love for the arts among the next generation. Our children should grow up respecting and appreciating our rich and unique culture."

With that we conclude this phenomenal home tour! Would you believe me if I told you that this home tour was in the making for over a year! Yes, that's how long it's taken for this to happen. (It would be amiss if I did not thank Shalaka Pingale for introducing me to Sandeep. Thank you Shalaka, this feature would not have been possible if it wasn't for you!)

As for Sandeep, he is one of the most wonderful and patient soul's I've met in recent times!!! I've bombarded him with questions and requests and every single time he has been so gracious and understanding in answering all of them. I wish him and his wonderful family the very best!!!

I know how my readers love a good home tour, so I'm pretty sure you would have devoured this one! 
Until we meet again, happy decorating lovely people:)

(Image Credit/Copyright : Sandeep R Inamke. The images may NOT be used for commercial or non-commercial purposes without the prior written permission of Sandeep Inamke and TECD.)

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Presenting Mrinmayee’s, the splash of color collection - “ULLASINI"

Looking for a little shopping therapy this festival season?
I’ve got you covered! It’s been a year since I last featured the Ireland based jewelry brand “Mrinmayee”. In a short span of time, this brand has created a niche for itself and has become a household name with ladies who appreciate handcrafted goodness. What I absolutely love about Mrinmayee is that the designs beautifully balance contemporary style but from an Indian standpoint. In time for the festive season, they have come up with a stunning, kaleidoscopic collection, “Ullasini”! The capsule collection is totally in sync with the colors and spirit of the Indian festive season. The focal point of Ullasini is the "silver-glass pendants". Subhadra has added a small set of semi-precious stones and pure silver beads for happy pops of color so as to coordinate with different attires. Holding it all together is the handcrafted, pure silver chains that keep the look clean and simple.
I must tell you that this particular collaboration with Subhadra was exciting and challenging! Challenging because, I’m usually very happy being behind the camera for all of my collaborations. But with this one, Subhadra wanted me to be her "Ullasini Lady". I was required to put together looks not only for the festive season but also create looks that would transition into everyday style. It did not take much time or effort on her part to convince me, as I was completely blown away by the collection! Each piece was so lovingly and thoughtfully made, I had a hard time choosing just a few pieces to work with.
Having embedded the feeling of euphoria in the design aspect of this collection, it is rightly titled “Ullasini”- one who is Ecstatic. Subhadra further goes on to explain the inspiration behind this wonderful collection, “ I love these lines by Albert Einstein which go like: 
"We dance for laughter, we dance for tears. 
  We dance for madness, we dance for fears. 
  We dance for hopes, we dance for screams, 
  We are the dancers, we create the dreams." 
It so beautifully describes the passion and ecstasy that each of us possess within us and my idea was to reflect this state in wearable pieces of jewelry.
We've seen a lot of jewelry with silver-glass pendants. I didn't want to put together something run down like adding a string of semi-precious stones. I also didn't want to hang pendants off of pre-made chains as it would leave nothing for my creativity nor would it be playfully festive. Thus the idea of 60-40 came to my mind; long silver chains with a dash of semi-precious stones added for vibrancy and finished with the stunning beauties that the silver-glass pendants are. The ghungroos (bells) that are the dangles for each pendant are literally synonymous with the sounds of classical dance or the rhythm of our hearts.”
The limited edition collection consists of 10 pieces in an array of colors. Talking about the technical aspects of the process behind Ullasini, Subhadra tells me, This was one collection where the design wouldn't have worked had I sketched it. It had to be done on the go. Because the most important aspect of each neck-piece was using the right amount/number of semi-precious stones. They just couldn't be too less or too many. So there were times when I'd put a necklace together and make it in 30 minutes and others where I worked on them for 3 days.” 
Here’s what “I” loved about Ullasini:
~ Go Long or go Home - The neckpieces in this collection shout “go long”. And I absolutely loved that about it. I didn’t have to worry about the neck lines competing with the jewelry!
~ For the love of handmade - The thread of simplicity, elegance, versatility, handcrafted genuineness and love of details is evident in every piece of Ullasini. 
~ Versatility – Though the pieces have a bohemian flair, what’s wonderful about this collection is that it gives one the limitless options to combine with any kind of outfit. You could do a casual or dressy look, effortlessly go from day to night as well as create easy pairings with either western casuals or Indian formals. 
~ Colors a plenty – The collection has pieces in an array of hues from bold fuchsia, chic blues to an opulent yellow in an assortment of designs and sizes. 
~ Last but not the least it feeds the boho-chic side of me and I know that it will do the same for you too.
I decided to create one traditional Indian look for the festive season and a majority of fusion looks that would work beautifully throughout the year. With the eclectic charm of this collection, it was easy to create an impressive look in no time. I paired it with denims, Ikats, Kalamkaris, the latest fit and flair dresses to a Kanchi pattu. Yes, that’s how adaptable these pieces are! A must have accessory for every wardrobe.
I always like knowing a little more about the person behind the brand, their experiences and thoughts that went into creating a piece that I own. Apart from that, I also firmly believe, we all could learn and grow from each other’s experiences. With that in mind, I asked Subhadra, what was the one thing that has changed her as a person, since she started her brand Mrinmayee, “Running a business is definitely life changing in itself; running one that is a one-woman team is a much bigger challenge. Though I'm thankful for some key qualities that were imbibed in me since childhood, one thing that I had to learn on the go was to provide excellent customer service without losing my self-respect. I have been very fortunate to connect with the sweetest of patrons who turned into friends and respected and valued my work in the true sense. Then there were a select few of those (thankfully!)) that viewed me and my business as a service at their convenient disposal. I had to learn the very hard way that I have to be unabashedly proud of my work and not let my humility and kindness be exploited. I totally agree with the meaning behind "Once bitten, twice shy" but bitter experiences are what make us stronger, right?” Couldn't agree with her more!
On a parting, nostalgic note, Subhadra shares, “2017 has been a very fulfilling year so far. So many new connections, new friendships, new patrons, impromptu collections, my teeny tiny first sellout collection and immense heartwarming appreciation from dear patrons across the globe. It is so motivating and encouraging that I'm only raring to go for more. ULLASINI is a collection close to my heart and I really hope all your wonderful readers will give it as much love as you did to my earlier collections.
I’d also like to mention that being featured on TECD is nothing short of a celebrity moment for me. I particularly take pride in being a part of not just any blog that writes about creatives, but one that strives to present unique, exciting and entertaining content to it's readers, not to forget the exceptional quality of them. So understandably being a part of TECD has put Mrinmayee on the map. It has paved way to patrons connecting with me from across the globe and has introduced me to people who truly understand and value my work. I would rather connect with someone who'd love and take pride in adorning my creations rather than buy them for the sake of it. Sruthi, TECD has done exactly what I wanted and I'm ever thankful to you for this!” 

Subhadra, we absolutely love your work and know for sure that you are here to stay! Wishing you loads of love, light and happiness! Thank you for trusting me with Ullasini. I had a blast and would do this again in a heart beat! 

As for my dear readers, if you are as smitten by this impressive collection and would like to order your very own piece of Ullasini, please head to Subhadra's website and purchase directly at Mrinmayee. Alternatively you can write to her with any questions at subhadra@mrinmayeejewellery.com. There is a special offer just for you my dear readers!!! Subhadra would like to offer a 15% discount to TECD readers, valid from 6th September 2017 to end-of-day 10th September 2017. The discount code is LOVETECD15. Shop away, what are you waiting for ???
(FYI: You can also connect with them via Instagram and Facebook for regular updates of their latest collection and sale information.) 

(Image Credit/Copyright: Jewelry images by Mrinmayee, All others by SPG and Pranav for The East Coast Desi. The images may not be used for commercial or non-commercial use without the prior written permission of Mrinmayee and TECD.)

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Revisiting the Home of My Design Gurus (Mini - Home Tour)

I thought it was about time that we revisited the home of my design gurus - my parents. I did share an elaborate home tour 3 years back. From then to now, there have been a few changes, but a home as beautiful as this, deserves a second look. The images I'm sharing today have been hibernating in my archives for over a year now. If you want to know, why I decided to share them now, reason being, I'm  terribly home sick. I could use any help to heal the way I feel right now!  
Let's start with the coffee table display in the living room, shall we?As most of you would remember, my parents are avid collectors of brass artifacts and Ganesha statues (I'm happy these genes passed onto me;) This love for all things brass is reflected in the choice of artifacts showcased on a wonderful vintage teak table with a marble top from Rain Tree. A collection of bells in different materials ranging from silver, brass to bell metal (a combo of copper and tin) happily keep each other company. (FYI : bells intended for use in the worship of Lord Shiva will have a figure of Lord Nandi). Some gardening books mirrors their interest in plants, a Dhokra lamp and an intricately hand carved brass Ganesha make the display complete. Adding a touch of green is the Zebra plant (Haworthia Fasciata) housed in a container from Kerala made from a coconut tree trunk. 
This corner is my absolute favorite! The decor elements here are all so South Indian - Tanjore paintings, hand carved stone Ganesha statue and Nandi, an antique pillar used to hang the Singh's collection of brass bells and lamps and the bronze urli.  
Here a reclaimed pillar base it used to display some vintage brass chombus (a traditional container used by the religious men to carry water) Upcycling at it best won't you agree?
The unique circular Ashta Lakshmi & Panch mukhi Ganesha Tanjore was what my husband and I had lovingly bought for our very first home in Bengaluru. We found it on one of our trips to Trichy. Got it restored and it graced the walls of our Bengaluru apartment. It is a heavy piece and it took all our might to get this up on the wall in India. There was no chance that the dry walls of our home here in the US, could carry all that weight so we  decided that mom would be our best best to safe guard this piece till we were able to return and reclaim its possession. But in the meantime, it sits pretty on the walls of the formal dining room in my parent's home. More lovingly scrubbed brass artifacts and a vintage trunk makes for another wonderful display.
Flowering branches from the garden outside get tucked into a unique brass container. A few artifacts from a Nepal trip complete this lovely corner. Notice the little trunk like side table, it doubt duties as an additional storage option. The little tile inlay detail was something that dad added himself to give the trunk a visual edge. 
Another closeup shot of the intricately carved stone Ganesha. Also sharing this frame cause, mom got some beautiful marigolds to fill in the Urli:)
Finally, a shot with the Kerala style lamp in focus. I hope you enjoyed the visual snippets. I can't wait to visit my parents sometime soon.......until then, patience and these pretty images will have to do.....

(Images: Sruthi Singh. The images are the copyrighted and belong to The East Coast Desi. Please do not use them for commercial or non-commercial purpose without the prior written consent.)