Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Show your festive spirit with easy DIY on gift wrapping

I remember as a kid how  I used to wait for Christmas. Christmas would hold a special attachment to most of the kids, the festival being associated with Santa Claus, a month filled with happiness and  merry making, baking and yes playing secret Santa!

Secret Santa filled us with the anticipation of receiving gifts.Last week my daughter and her class mates played secret Santa.I helped her pack her handmade gift for her friend. And that's when the idea of this post came along!

Gifting is  an art.The gift should be such that it strikes a chord with the receiver.Try to learn what  gift would please the receiver. The way you present your gift also talks about the extra effort you have put in to bring a smile across!

 Let us today have a look at some interesting DIY that will help you pack your gifts during this Christmas and New year. These are very simple ones,can be easily practiced even by kids guided by adults.The ideas matter, rest is easy. They are not at all expensive and can be easily made from things lying around your home.So sit back, relax, learn wrapping techniques and  enjoy the process of gifting with your loved ones.

1 A simple DIY with brown paper

You can wrap the gift with brown paper or any other colour and either draw to give a wrapped effect or use twines and alphabetical cut outs from newspapers to complete the look! Here you can also spell the entire name and or just the initials.Either way the wrapping gives the gift a very personal touch.

Such a simple sweet way to personalize. It doesn't cost a dime too!

2.Bring in the Christmas spirit

Use buttons to  make a snowman or Christmas tree.Fasten the buttons  by sticking or sewing them. Alternatively use sponge and colours to dab a Christmas on your gift wrapping paper. It is a fun activity and ideal to include the kids too!

3. With twines and paper strips

This might a look bit difficult but once you get the knack it's relatively simpler. The method is the same to work with both the twines and paper strips.Pass the strips over and under the strip alternately to create this arrangement.The number of strips or twine used depends upon your creativity and imagination and whether you would want to cover the entire surface.You can make this arrangement either on the centre or on the sides of the surface.

4. A paper butterfly.

Isn't that a very pretty design.Cut out shapes of a butterfly either on newspaper, printed paper or coloured paper. For each design cut out 3 such pieces.Stick the first piece entirely on the surface & second and third butterfly partially on the first one to give a fluttering look.Now you can paste as many as you want.If they are coloured ones ,they will look awesome I tell you! Not only butterfly , you can even make the cut out in various other shapes like floral motifs or birds.

5.Heart prints from a potato and cookie cutters

Cut a potato into two halves.Insert the cookie cutter and get the desired shape. Immerse it into a bowl of paint and there you go.Make interesting patterns and designs.Add contrast by immersing the heart shaped potato in different colour. An effective way to get the best wrapping paper at no extra cost and one that also fuels our creativity!

6. Draw, cut and paste

A very simple one. Of course it is step wise and well explained so that I need not Blahh...blah...

7. Cloth wrappers

Sometimes we have small fabrics left and can't think of any other worthwhile use for it, at that moment but do save them for a later use.You never know when they can come handy.Yes, fabrics can be used to cover and wrap gifts attractively. I found this way rather imaginative and useful when it comes to gift kitchen essentials or say a recipe or a cook book.How cute is that with a wooden spoon?

So I have given you ideas and you can share with me how you implemented it or arrived at a better one of your own.

I tried them too to gift my nephews.This is the result.

Have a Fantastic Christmas and a Happy New Year. See you all in 2016!

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Open New doors.

As one door closes, there is another waiting to be opened...

Doors reveal a lot about the personality of one who is indoors! While we were in Kerala,clicked some snapshots of doors.I have always been fascinated by doors.The ones that you find in typical Goa or Portuguese cities.The ones that are so colourful,you would want to knock and peep inside to find a riot of colours inside too!

Kerala doors were different.They reflected intricate carving on wood, brass ornamentation & beautiful metal worked doors.Enjoy the post and the last few remaining days of 2015.

Rustic...The worn out door reminds us of so many seasons it would have welcomed!

Loved the granite colour ...It is a complete Kerala door with the traditional brass features

The rawness adds to its appeal

The metal door stands guards to a museum full of treasures

The brass  ornate lock called manichitrathazu steals the show

This was just too good! The vertical central pattern carving along with circular brass ornamentation brings life to an otherwise ordinary door

Similar  but another pattern

Would love to have an entry like this

Masterpiece again!

Simple yet stunning!
Welcome your door to 2016!

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Jew town-Fort Kochi

Some time back we had been to Kochi( Cochin) in Kerala.Today's post is about the shopper's lane in Fort Kochi area also popularly called as 'Jew town'.It is a paradise for the art lovers and shopaholics alike.The Jew Street itself has a very interesting history.Long back the Jews traded in these narrow lanes although now only a handful of them remain.
Jew town is a quaint little area that lends out an old world charm.

Kerala and Kochi in particular is still known world wide for their aromatic spices.The entire street is filled with antique shops replete with brass, bronze and wooden artifacts in particular. One can take their own time and go through each antique shop. They are like museums giving you a glimpse of an era gone by.Let me share  some images of  Jew town.

These are cow heads.Available in most shops made of wood and brightly painted.Used to be hung around on the outer doors to ward off evil and bring prosperity!

A stone Nandi standing guard!

I think this is a granary..not sure although

some old wooden vessels

Jew town was beautiful with shops lined on either side of the street selling, what I love the most-Antiques.After all the walking and sight seeing,if you would want to rest for a while, head to a cafe. There were so many of them at every turn and bend...so much to see and so little time.

More on the Kerala trip will follow soon.Some info on Kerala Architecture, a palace visit and a picture heavy post from-  A visit to Folk Museum.Keep visiting!

Friday, December 4, 2015

Travel souvenir III- Aranmula Kannadi

'Kannadi' means mirror in Malyalam and Aranmula is a small village in the Indian state of Kerala.The Aranmula mirrors are a special kind in the sense that these are not the silvered glass mirrors.It is a front surface reflection  mirror which eliminates secondary reflections and aberrations. Aranmula kannadi is a handmade metal alloy mirror and the exact metals used in the alloy is kept as a family secret.Very few families are now engaged in the mysterious mirror making process.

Many metallurgists believe it to be an alloy of copper and tin but the proportion is still unknown.It is polished for several days to get the reflective surface.Every Kerala bride gets one such Aranmula Kannadi as part of her wedding trousseau.It is one among the eight auspicious or 'ashtamangalyam'.It is considered to bring luck,wealth and prosperity in one's home. Aranmula Kannadi are bestowed with Geographical Indication tag.

Aranmula kannadi is 100% handmade.It is a unique kind of handheld mirror and hence a little pricey too! The diameter of the reflective surface of the mirror, the shape ,the frame size and the art work on it all are factors that contribute to the pricing of the Aranmula Kannadi.

If you happen to be in Kerala and want something unique that gives a taste of the region,you can have a look at these handmade beauties.

Images: Pinterest

Monday, November 9, 2015

On Diwali night...

Remember, I shared a post on some DIY activity for Deepavali. Sajavat's very ardent reader tried to implement one of the ideas and also shared a fabulous idea of her own. She is also my closest mate, been my partner in  crimes & secret adventures right from childhood.We share many common interests on art, decor, DIY, recipes, gardening and many more...None other than my adorable Sis Sapna Mahadevan.

On a wooden chowki she has painted a pulli kolam  (Dotted rangoli) and adorned it with strings of  paper marigold. This theme goes very well with the festive spirit.

I love such simple & easy to implement arrangements at home that makes your home beautiful and your efforts worthwhile!

Have a safe Diwali folks.

If you too are passionate and enthusiastic about giving a traditional look to your home and have such unique ideas share them here.Will be happy to post them,

Sunday, November 8, 2015

TUNI- Textiles, yoU aNd I

Have you heard of Tuni Interiors and the very talented founder Mrinmayee Dhobale? If not then it's time you know them.

Tuni interiors is an enterprise that brings textiles and interior design closer to each other.Textiles play a huge role in the decor of a home and that is where Tuni interiors come in.

About the founder:

Mrinmayee Dhobale is an alumnus of NIFT and London College of Fashion who began the conceptualization and planning of TUNI in early August 2013 and finally, it took shape on 29 January 2014 and had its successful debut exhibit in March 2014.

In Mrinmayee's words...

 'I have a huge weakness for art and all things handmade. Wanting to put together art and textiles, very simply put that's how TUNI was born. I absolutely love traveling and the search for beautiful art work takes me to various cities. Having, travel incorporated in my work has been the best part of it. '

Her future plans for Tuni interiors

'I want to collaborate with more artists (folk or contemporary) and bring their art form to life through various textiles and home decor products. The time of fabric tents and fabric wall coverings has been my biggest inspiration, I strongly feel textiles add the warmth a home needs. In the future I see myself filling homes with beautiful textiles from TUNI.  
 In collaboration with an interior firm in Hyderabad, I am currently working on the interiors of an apartment as well. In my opinion textile and interior design goes hand in hand and that is what I am experimenting with.'

Tuni interiors believes in exclusivity and therefore customization is its forte.They thoroughly understand the customers requirement and then work towards achieving aesthetic brilliance!
One aspect that pulled me towards Tuni was their involvement with the folk art forms &  regional textiles of India. Be it Madhubani, Warli, Kerala Murals, Ikkat designs, khunn fabrics...the list continues.

The designing at Tuni  is a two way process.On the core level they work in sync with their artisans, pairing their design skills with the executional abilities of the craftsmen, nurturing their relationship at each level.
Also while engaging in design development  of homes /offices they collaborate with the architects and interior designers to create the best as per the clients requirement.

TUNI has a well networked team of highly skilled artists, artisans and craftsmen from the interiors of India. They engage with the rural artists to create new designs and products exclusively for their clientele. In the process, TUNI helps them access new markets and possibilities.

Today I would want to showcase their Kerala Mural art form on textiles.Each and every piece is beyond description. It is a true example of art,textiles and decor blending beautifully to create the desired effect.

About this collection : Mural Virtuosity

TUNI brings to your coffee table, a story from Guruwayur, Kerala....

Once upon a time, in the land of Guruwayur, Kerala, there was a beautiful Devaswom (temple). Artists and devotees covered its walls in mural paintings. They drew inspiration from mythological and folk tales. The artists used vegetable dyes to add colour to their tales. In an unfortunate event in 1970, the Devaswom caught fire, destroying all this mural art. For a few years the walls remained barren of this beautiful art. In 1989, the Devaswom saw the need to restore this art, and the ‘Guruwayur Devaswom Mural Painting School’ was set up. The school takes pride in protecting and continuing this art form. Every year a batch of 10 students complete their training in mural painting from the Devaswom School. The art still retains the use of vegetable dyes and mythological themes.

Kerala mural paintings are the fresco's depicting mythology and legends which are drawn on the walls of temples and churches.
In this collection, TUNI has worked with students from the Devaswom School, led by Krishna Kumar to translate this art on home decor. As in with all their collections Tuni has strived to make art and functionality meet in home!

Coffee Tables with Kerala Mural Work.

Krishna & the calf...depicted beautifully!

Another in the making!

Some more enticing piece of artwork from Tuni that adorns my home. It creates the perfect traditional setting for the festive season.

There is no better way to give your home an ethnic and festive touch than the rich textiles & art that is popular across India and Tuni is where one should head to, to achieve this look.

For any inquiries you can get in touch with them at http://www.tuniinteriors.com/tuni/ContactUs

Tuesday, November 3, 2015


Every year it's the same question. How to make this Diwali a little different from last years'? One can find loads of inspiration on the internet these days.Sharing some ideas with all of you,  just in case you missed them. These are very simple ones but with a little more imagination & creativity from your side, you can give these arrangements a whole new meaning.

With Marigolds

I have always liked Marigolds but apart from the usual floating Marigolds, never gave much thought to it.This one looks real simple but can give a face-lift to your entrance. Do try this out.What you need are only many strings of Marigold and there you have a pretty decor idea ready to follow.

Image courtesy:Pinterest

Kolam from Rice paste

Pic courtesy: rangdecor.blogspot.com

Such a simple one. Don't stop at one design .Keep making these arch shaped designs continuously.The plumerias in these small earthen bowls create the necessary drama in the decor. Place flower bowls in each arch .Not only at the entrance but drawn anywhere inside your home, they would look appealing.

Paper torans

Pic courtesy:Pinterest

You can make torans from paper too. Just follow the step wise procedure in the image above to make such individual flowers. string them together in the pattern of your choice and a pretty toran for your front door or pooja room is ready!

Lights on Deepavali

Pic Courtesy: Pinterest

 This is a real easy one.Get hold of some T-light candles, paper bags and doilies.
Stick pretty doilies on these paper bags.Place the T-light inside the bags and you have a arrangement worth dying for!

So get going folks...Do share with me, your ideas too. I can share them with sajavat readers. Let us have a safe & prosperous Diwali.Stay blessed.

Coming up next is a wonderful post on, A Design & Decor Enterprise, focusing on art and textiles  and weaving fascinating stories.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Home décor elements inspired from some of India’s best known places…

Goa, Jaipur, Punjab, Delhi and Agra what’s the common factor among all these cities? They are the Pride of our country in more ways than one.

Agra boasts of the Tajmahal-One of the Seven Wonders of the World. A monument that celebrates true love. The beauty and allure of Tajmahal is such that it draws from tourists from far off places. Sitting pretty on the banks of Yamuna the Tajmahal is what lends uniqueness to Agra.

Goa-I know the name makes you feel lazy and relaxed. That’s we do in Goa. While you are in Goa enjoy the white sands, lines of palm trees and sparkling water. The Goan architecture is influenced by the Portuguese styled bungalows, the arched windows, the colourful exteriors with white and blue tile work make Goa a traveler’s paradise.

Jaipur- The name spells grandeur. Considered a flamboyant city with palaces that take you off your feet, Jaipur is the pink city of India. There is colourful chaos all around and the history and splendor of Jaipur’s majestic past enthralls the tourist like no other.

Punjab-It’s the land of five rivers. The people of Punjab are known for their high levels of energy, for their bhangra and their never say die attitude. The Harmandir sahib in Amritsar or the Golden temple is a must visit and popular shrine for one and all. The peace that you experience once you are at the Gurudwara surrounded on all its side by water is worth an experience.

Delhi- Delhi is about its havelis, forts & monuments. It is about the ‘dilliwala’.Popularly called ‘Dil walon ki nagari’, it can be an overwhelming affair to visit India’s capital city.
Apart from all that we discussed about these various jewels of India, there is another factor that brings them together. The’ Indie Tadka ‘collection by mytangerinetree.com

You can now enjoy the spirit of each of these cities in the confines of your home. Each time you reminisce about your favourite city, feel them through the thoughtfully curated bed elements and coffee mugs from Indie tadka.

It’s an ideal gift for the festive season too! Anybody missing their hometown during this period, you can make their day…

For more info and to have a peak at their offerings, find the details below.

Also you can order the Indie Tadka collection from snapdeal. Find the snapdeal link on the topmost right hand corner of the blogpage.

- Instagram - mytangerinetree
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