Thursday, August 3, 2017

Perfect, Pretty and In Place (Home Tour of Kinnari Parikh)

Tell me…do you have a friend where you drop by for an event or pop in for an unannounced visit…any day...anytime…everything is perfect, pretty and in place? Why, you ask? With a current state of mind filled with anxiety and excitement taking you today on one such home tour of a very close-knit family friend who is not only known for an impeccably organized skills but also a warm hearted lady.
Nestled within a quiet and leafy lane off the bustling city Toronto, there is a home that has been under the scanner of my eyes since long to be featured in my décor radar - a home of Parikh family, lovingly known as “Parikh Parivar”. 
Kinnari Parikh, the lady of the home - whose perfection itself has become a benchmark …whose thoughts, feelings, and attitudes closely match mine, whose generosity is popular lore in our social circles and who clearly knows how to eke every inch of her home. Her home radiates warmth, laughter and love of the couple and their both charming girls that she dearly dotes on. 
Any well thought out home with just the right energy smells good, feels warm and looks inviting - you may instantly hit with these characters upon arrival of her entrance. Vibrant ingenuity welcomes you at the entry way, which is brought to life by a dotting different forms of Ganeshji falling perfectly in the rhythm with the core of her ethnically Indian home. 
An exquisite and visually loud effigy of Krishnaji, which the family bought from one of the local artifact store, compels you for your short stay in her foyer. Her home is a chock full of lovely architectural detailing and this niche is a part of it which sets the tone for the rest of her home. 

And here is the family’s darling living room which creates a warm space with contemporary details and a bit sprinkling of brass. The family has a separate dining room with an added convenience of walk in servery and a less formal family room completely devoted for their family time. Both the rooms are work in progress and Kinnari is still scratching her head tackling these rooms.
My collection has created waves amongst many of my readers, and she being my avid reader and follower, takes a leaf from our collection. My creativity has given her wings and driving inspirations from my vignettes she has pushed her creativity to another level. Shown here are the best of her collected pieces so far. The 'baby gannu' reading a book in a relaxed pose is my favorite and was bought on our Diwali visit from a local temple.
Soft pools of light via wall lamps and candles are making the living room feel much cozier and inviting.  Beige walls, dark toned hardwood floors and juxtaposition of vibrant patterns and colors amplify the décor quotient of the room.
Family treasures are not merely decorative objects, they remind us of the people who matter us the most. After all, these inheritances help us to plug into the past and keep us closer with nostalgia and history. Entrusting the same funda that I follow for my heirlooms, she has also learnt to put those antiques at the best use. The heirlooms in her home are dotted with a whole new perspective brimming with a new life full of emotion.
 The evening mood teases out a unifying colour of brass here. 
The multi-functional and visual anchor here is the kitchen island, which adds space and functionality in her most used room. Whether it’s a home work time for kids or they decide to pitch in to help for dinner, the extra land on island comes in handy for any additional use. The island is also a witness of our impromptu ‘chai’ (a Kinnari special) sessions and gossips ;).
Kinnari is genetically wired to have a spotless clean home and takes due care and attention to the quality of her surroundings. The ongoing delight of having a place for everything and everything on its place in her home, always makes me pick up tips on how to declutter on very visit. 
As we wrap up this home tour, wouldn't you agree that Kinnari has assessed the space with same gusto as per personality? Her home is a sign of their well-lived life, family heirlooms and favorite memories that lend a character to make her house a home.  Signing out, wishing all the very best to "Parikh Parivar".

And until we meet again, stay connected lovely readers, toodles!

(Images are taken by Pinkz. Please do not use the images without the prior written permission of the home owner and Pinkz Passion)

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Modest Size Living (Home Tour of Gayatri Singh)

Mingling countries, cultural art and traditional artefacts live far larger than square footage of the home in our today’s home tour. The pretty pad of Gayatri Singh, nestled against the structural skylines of Singapore, is both inspiring and interesting in equal measure.  
Gayatri, a professionally trained chef and a culinary composer throws the doors of her home open for us today. She titles her personal décor style as very vintage and Asian with a touch of Indian element. Her graceful apartment in Singapore (where she just moved after living in Tokyo for 9 long years) is a proof of the broadening effects of her travel. If I need to, I can vouch on her abiding love of travel because when we started conversing about this home tour she was in Singapore. Our next chat we had in Tokyo and then in Bali and last recent one in India in a short span of weeks. 

It may just take a quick glance around Gayatri’s bright apartment to work out where her passions and interests lie. Her earliest interest was laid in cooking and following that she pursued her education towards that. She may have decided to dedicate herself to the food industry but the interior design enthusiast didn't take long to discover her growing appetite for interiors also.  

Being a seasoned traveller her source of inspiration differs to each of her travel destination. And as we can see, those inspirations are manifested uniquely in each corner of her home. Chinese king statues here are dotted with many other unpredictable mix of objects. An eye catching large smiling Buddha frame is positioned perfectly in the middle to bounce off his calmness all over the room. 
Most of the pieces of her decor allude to the trips Gayatri has taken. Just like this hanging tapestry from Japan called obi (a kimono belt made out of silk) depicts the scenes of a Japanese king and queen sitting under the tree. Keenly aware of the modest size living, she also has some inciting inventions and creative solutions thrown in her decor just like this piece of a ladder where she hung a brass diya. It surely exemplifies interesting yet effortless way to brighten the wall.                          
Carefree mix of style like contemporary art, modern settings, classic travel finds and traditional pieces are keeping the open concept dining and living rooms alive. Large dining space is essential enough for Gayatri who is an avid cook and loves hosting parties.
Gayatri owns quite a collection of some intriguing objects, while her petite brass pieces spark a dressy note in different corners of the home.
The comfort can be sensed in the air as soon as you walk in Gayatri’s living area. Solid fabric and simple patterns are chosen along with few accent pieces that make perfect sense for a young couple’s life. Adjoining balcony is enlarging the visual living space. Whether the occasion is a spontaneous movie night or a restful read of a good book, their living room facilitates lingering and happy times.

Arresting Asian charm, global sensibility and admiration for Indian details makes her home visually appealing. Her home is decorated in her signature and relaxed but refined style where very nook and wall is infused with a story and memory that richly reveal her vibrant creative flair. 
Few more well-edited vignettes around the home keeps the space engaging and alive.
When it comes to hosting, Gayatri is a natural. Evenings with lavish table and teaming it with the finest food is Gayatri's forte. Fond of cooking and hosting Gayatri prepares and serves delicious food without breaking a sweat at any party hosted at home. Images here from her previous gatherings remark how efficiently she composes soiree for every guest to remember.

Food savvy Gayatri also has a loyal following among the other cooking aficionados on her Instagram account. Do check out her visually arresting pictures and soulful recipes here.

As we seal today's home tour, I heartily thank Gayatri for letting us peek in her beautiful apartment. Wishing you and your family all the very best of the world Gayatri. 

And for you my lovely readers, until we meet again, stay connected, toodles! 

Sunday, June 18, 2017

All Decked Out! (Tour of our deck)

We, the truly Canadians, are the biggest weather fanatic. After enduring the most classic and long winter, we impatiently wait for summer and sunshine immediately connects with us. This year is also not an exception, with the hint of summer in our ravine; we have been totally plugged out with our outdoor surroundings in our newly built deck. Set against the backdrop of the sparkling waves of pond where the water is shimmering with the heat haze and leafy ravine splays for miles, our deck is a ready-to-go stage for all of our outdoor activities and entertaining. 
My mind often boggles to think how many efforts it went in to build this place from a house to home. We have been contemplating to bring in this major change in our outdoor space ever since we moved in. Finally we could get an actually believable space (almost 500 square footage) last year in which we could relax, have privacy, entertain and where my husband can also catch a cat nap after a long day ;). So, come on, let’s walk out to the back door and tour our patio/deck which is our happy place that we crave at the end of each summer day.

Unlike regular wooden decks, we decided on composite decking for almost ZERO maintenance and high comfort place to relax. Composite decks offer the same beauty of wood without the any downsides. No paint-no stain, adaptable and Canadian weather resistant for years to come. We also picked safety tempered and shatter resistant glass railings to create a modern look without blocking our ravine view. It also holds up the extreme temperatures of Canada.

Stunning vignettes are a key ingredient in any of my décor so why should our outdoor be any different ;). A contemporary outdoor setting for dining in style is a must. Thrown in here are some glass accessories and few low-maintenance plants and flowers to complete the look.  

Though, it gets ridiculously hot in summer and to keep Mr. Sun at bay and cool off, we have installed a gazebo from Lowes. It occupies the perfect amount of space to protect us from rain or rays. Gazebo contains net curtains with zip for us to recline or doze off on relaxing afternoons while protecting us from those unwanted bugs at evenings (though we have hardly found any).  

Each piece is outdoor friendly here yet sophisticated enough to use indoors when the weather gets colder. I have extracted the very best out of what I already had indoor. I strongly believe in relying on your imagination and style rather than deep purse for all those seasonal decorative changes. 

The best highlight of our deck is the light. At the stroke of a dusk, the patio instantly becomes a party hub with lush green view. Dimmable lights, that greatly extend our outside living with ambience, can be easily operated from our smartphones on Wi-Fi. They set the perfect mood to take our deck up a notch on the welcoming scale even for the people who walk around the pond.

The space allows us to connect with Mother Nature. The feeling of being enveloped in lush greenery while sipping Tea or chilled cocktail in the company of chirping and tweeting birds (and frogs at night) is a cozy retreat for us from the pressure of modern life.
Be it a sunset or star gazing...many smile inducing and satisfying moments take place here on summer evenings.  

Multiple zones for relaxation and entertainment on the same level make the most of summer's laziest and haziest days comfy. A sweet bench here offers an extra seat for our guests or a makes a perfect place for me to slink away with a book in the evenings. The deck also provides a set of stairs that leads to our walk out basement. (we have a built in barbeque and another outdoor space underneath the deck, where the major work is wrapped up, will hopefully share the space with you all soon.)
So, if you ask me for my summer plans, relaxing is the only task on my to-do list this summer so far. And this year, with this summer entertaining oasis…looking forward for another season of barbequing and grilling outdoors. Until we meet again, stay connected lovely peeps, toodles.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Home Obsessed!

Everyone has their own version of homes; our home is an extension of our selves. An outlet for my creativity, a source of pleasure and comfort. You may also call it a bit of an obsession and a culmination of all the best décor thoughts that I had stored while throwing in some curve balls.
Though, this home, which has been a work of passion, will complete four years in May…and what a perpetual journey it has been. Our home has been pampered, valued, twisted, often spoiled and above all loved. My mind was crowded with mystical million thoughts when the process actually begun. How I wish it was as easy as a click of a finger. My husband and I together dissected every décor thought constructively with our chosen theories, that often lead to hot discussions also ;). Looking back at it, we feel proud to have a home that is filled with the welcoming warmth that reflects our personal ethos and style. 
Somewhere in between this home philosophies and aesthetism, my blog took shape. A blog that has not pushed but has gently opened that door to expand
my passion for the creative abilities. A blog that declares my love for home out loud. I am a décor junkie and this little passion of mine just satiates my heart’s desire but when I hear from you all… be it for our Ganesha collection, our home décor or brimming brass, I feel I've done the right job. We all just need a gentle prod to credence our vision and I feel elated when I see sent in pictures by my readers, that my posts are just doing that for many of you out there. Thank you all for being on this journey with me.
I have seen people with fitness obsessed, food obsessed, fashion obsessed but I am home obsessed...I said it. It is very important for  me the way my home looks...whether there is a crowd or just me, I want my home to feel intimate. But wait...if you are here, I believe you are also mildly into it to...;).So let's together make a place that is warm, inviting and beautiful...a place that you are proud of...a place where memories are made. Until we meet again, have a great weekend and bump around on Instagram and Facebook, toodles!

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Chic Touches of Cherry Blossoms!

Spring….the time of rebirth and renewal of gorgeous here. Finally the warm weather has settle in and I am absolutely celebrating the return of warm breezes and sunlit days….our ravine backyard has started giving us the hint of resuming our love affair with the season. The trees are starting to bud and songbirds are returning back in our ravine. My tulips are breaking the ground and soon will be showing a hint of color. Though, I am a new schooler and learning to graduate with the familiarities of planting, I am determined to embrace my inner florist this season :).  
Regardless of that fact that I have a brown thumb and I don’t keep indoor plants thriving…I always appreciate the happy side-effect of having beautiful flowers around the house.  And with the transition in season, huge splashes of spring flowers around the home are a sure-fire way to cheer anyone up. Unlike last year’s tulip touches, this year chic touches of cherry blossoms are spreading the array of beautiful pink around the home. A very thoughtful friend of mine lugged away few stems of these beauties from a park where the park officials were pruning the tree due to heavy rain. Now these short lived flowers are ‘pinkified’ modestly in our humble abode ;).

In our first vignette, pink blossoms have picked up on the brass accents beautifully and they seamlessly blend with the existing hot pink color and décor accessories in our living room. Beautifully cupped here with my brass tea kettle they lend a delicate touch of spring and I am so loving it.   
Grouping can be more romantic to add an instant floral fabulousness around you. Graceful bunch of bright blooms are emulating their presence here with copper, silver and brass all together! 
Every spring I go ahead and pile on colors in our home with spring accessories, delicate pink here is just blending in effortlessly with all the rest. Especially paired with an equally eye catching vase, these beauties are standing their own with an oriental touch on this setting.
You know me, I drain every last bit of my flowers and they literally go through a process until their survival and that’s why I didn’t have heart to toss away petals also…hence these pretty pink blossom petals are scattered in urli and big brass ice bucket (an impulse buy and a new hunt from an antique craft sale) for Ganeshji and Buddhaji also ;).
Flowers in any season radiate serenity for me. They are naturally welcoming to enhance some freshness in any place. Until my outdoor blooms rest a spell…I am all set indoors to nestle in the company of cherry blossoms after all day’s work. Are you spring ready yet? I do share bite size ideas on Instagram and Facebook, so stay connected peeps and have a wonderful spring time, toodles!

Monday, March 27, 2017

My loots of India

‘India’ and ‘shopping’ phrase seem so obvious. I still love the ritual of India shopping and it’s the oldest con I still fall for ;). How many of us haven’t surrendered to the lure of Indian shopping. There is nothing quite like walking along the old streets where nostalgia strikes you again and again. Taking in the window display at your local favorite stores, pausing at your favorite ice cream 'adda' or gobbling a sandwich at that local street vendor whom you still remember, surprisingly bumping into friends along the way and ultimately finding the perfect piece you were looking for. I feel euphoric...there is something so pulsating and hearty about India that makes us miss it deeply when you live for me tops the list that I look forward on every trip.
Since I have many readers asking the sources of my shopping and brass, I thought it would be apt to let you in and see all of those loots I lugged away on my recent visit.
Along with our vivid memories, our beautiful Indian attires and jewelry many new things followed us from India to our home this visit also. The very first stealing the show is the new handsome lantern from a central mall of Baroda (my home town). The place was brimming with many glamorous pieces that I would have love to add in my collection but controlling my frisson of excitement, I did not give into the impulse buy and excitedly bring home those big pieces that I liked. However, there was no wavering about bringing this perfectly stylish tiny lantern shaped candle holder with symmetrical design and glossy texture. The impeccable intricate work was just perfect to mingle with my traditional brass. 
The most classic ‘Lassi Glass’ was a very hard find. Being it on the top of the list, I wouldn’t have left any stone unturned to bring it home. Though, in a state of ‘CHHAS’ lovers, finding a Lassi glass seemed like a herculean task :). Finally rummaging through old stuff at ‘Bartanwala’ (utensil seller) I lucked into bumping this unique and timeless piece which he handed me over for Rupees 300 only. I definitely had a smirk on my face while homing these tulips in it.
Road side vendors on the streets of the city are the best bet for you if you are eyeing to add any reasonable brass collection in your home. There is always something I have picked up from them. Interestingly edged and etched brass plate and bowl ended up being mine for styling my vignettes. The decorative approach of floating flowers with candles is a breeze to pull off when you have such elegant décor accessories.
The shape and mini size of these brass pots sold me at the same vendor. From the minute I have got them, they have been my  muse and taking several turns on my Instagram feeds as well. After all, it is not necessary to inherit an antique or brass to love it and make it your own...there are many pieces that will just instantly connect with you and your surefooted and confident when you include them in your collection.
Treasure trove of priceless pieces in your ma’s or grandma’s attic is your best bet on your next visit to India. Dusting off that old hand me downs and instilling them in your living space adds a sense of charm, warmth and soul. Each piece in my mother's khazana tells a family story and opens up to an imaginary world to us. Bring a bout of that old fashioned sense by packing away those heirlooms. When was the last time you stumbled upon a spittoon? Here is mine…proudly a heirloom piece with a reasonable twist and shine pleasantly adding a splash of modernity in my living room despite of its age.  
For me, these heirlooms jog a memory of someone special and it provides a sense of both cohesion and intrigue in my décor style. Here is one more of those heirloom that I stole away from my mom- a German silver glass, thoughtfully integrated housing my flowers. There is not any standard recipe to fit these heirlooms smoothly in your surrounding décor, but with some simplest approach they win to add that historic charm in any décor style you follow.
And if you have missed these two beautiful pieces on my instagram feed that I happen to pick up on our travel to they are!

A prabhavali is a disk or circle of light (a halo) shown above or surrounding the head of the divine to represent their holiness and feel the peace emitting from the creator. It was checked off in my shopping list after stumbling online. The piece was sadly biting the dust in one of the Kerala store and upon the request (pretty please always works) the shopkeeper gave it away for 100Rs. (For him it was a broken piece and of no use). After showing some love by framing and affection by cleaning, it seems ready to be added on my next gallery wall :). 
Nothing is quite like revisiting travel memories. And our recent trip to Kerala has made us own a treasure box of memories. Beside abundant scenic beauty, Kerala is a place to get spoilt for the choices with exuberant art pieces. And if you are wondering how much damage this caused our wallets, not much really.... due to our weight restrictions we could only carry back a few quaint items and not nearly as many as I really wanted to! Here is the last piece of my loot. The smallest but the prettiest wood panel I could lug away in my suitcase.
Finally, I could layer these treasures and share with you all.  Specially for those readers who were keenly looking out for my India loot. Signing off the post hoping my shopping rant will eventually wend its way to some possibly useful tips for your next trip to India. You all have a great week ahead and stay connected on my Instagram and Facebook pages until we meet again here at the blog world, toodles!