Friday, April 28, 2017

A post on temple architecture

Sometimes as you stand in front of a monument or a temple as in this case,you feel so small..You have no words to describe the beauty of what lies in front of you, It leaves you in wonder thinking about those hands and artisans of the bygone era who constructed these masterpiece...And sometimes you even feel sorry for the state in which they are at present...(read )neglected structures.Feeling angry for the miscreants who knowingly damage the architectural marvel that are our to be preserved for all our future generation to take pride upon!

Yes, Such was my emotional state as I visited the temple sites of Halebid and Belur.

Halebid hosts the Shiva temple and Belur is known for the Chennakeshava (literal translation- Handsome Krishna) temple

Belur temple is located in Hassan district and was built by King Vishnuvardhana and is a fine example of the Hoysala dynasty and its workmanship.

When we had visited this temple ,it was the time of the Annual Rath Yatra, which is done after Ugadi and the temple premises was therefore all lighted up and the air was festive.

Within the temple
The temple premises is huge with ample space for one to just sit and gaze around.The main entrance as you can see has the Rajya Gopura as the crown which was the common practice during those days of Vijayanagara empire

The dwajasthambha or the pillar

The emblem of the Hoysala dynasty

The pillars inside the temple are jet black smeared with vermilion by the devotees. There are about 48 of such pillars within the temple. Look at the intricate filigree work.The main highlight of the temple is Darpana Sundari or "The lady with the mirror".

 The temple on all its sides is sculpted heavily showing animals, birds,dancers and other figures.The chennakeshva is the main deity but this temple is also flanked by a Lakshmi temple on its right and two other temples dedicated to the beloved of Vishnu.

Another attraction for the devotees and the kids mainly is the stepped well or the Pushkarni. An evening at the temple bought peace and calm to the otherwise chaotic minds of us city dwellers.

Halebid is about  16 km from Belur, was capital of Hoysala and it was formerly called as Dwarasamudra. It has one of the finest Hoysala temples said to have been started by Ketamalla, a commander of Vishnuvardhana in 1121. The temple houses twin Shiva Temples with a common platform and two garbhagrihas, Outer walls have rows of intricate figures narrating episodes from epics like Ramayana, Mahabharata, and Bhagavata.

Rows and rows of detailed intricate work that takes your breath away.

Nandi facing Lord Shiva's sanctum sanctorum

I know my images cannot do even quarter of a justice to the magnificent stone art that you get to see in these two temple sites. There came a point when I just put my camera away. I wanted to just take in all the beauty within me instead of capturing it through the lens!

My kids totally loved and admired the fine craftsmanship in both the temples.It is in our hands that we make the future generation aware and value  the glorious past India has had and carry the legacy of our rich culture and heritage forward!

Home tours and styling tips are in store for the month of May.Stay tuned folks!

Monday, April 24, 2017

Home tour - Saswati Hota

Today, we have yet another home tour on the blog which boasts of a unique personality. It's the abode of Saswati Hota from Goa.

Saswati is the food column contributor at Goan Espresso and the blogger at Delish Potpourri. She has traveled far and wide due to her husband's posting in the navy and that reflects in the decor of her home.
In her own words...

"A loving daughter, an incredibly proud naval wife to my man in white, a doting mother to two loveable girls, an avid food blogger, a home chef and many more other identities that define me. 
Being a defence officers wife for 19 years has taught me what is it like to live out of the box and the inevitable truth that nothing is permanent.This is our 16 th house in our 19 years of marriage!"

Are you getting the drift now, my dear readers when I say her home has a unique personality? 
It’s a crucial task when you are deployed to a new station and moving house every 2 to 3 years. And as they moved from one station to the next she realized housing wasn’t created equal everywhere. 

Saswati recollects her journey...

''Somewhere we walked into a comfy 5 room apartment and at times we were given a temporary barracks accommodation with one room and a kitchen and sometimes we just made the Naval mess our home till we got a house. And all these moving around and changing various houses has helped my creative juices to flow and aesthetic sense to make my home look bright and beautiful with the available amenities. Due to the continuous movement we cannot afford to overload our furniture but that has never stopped me to be a hoarder of beautiful artifacts. One look at my house and you will know where all we have been posted to, it’s a national integration of home d├ęcor. "

Love the way she has placed the puppets inside the jharokha. Very innovative I must say!

Regardless of the shape and size of your home , when it comes to carving out your own space..our homes reflect our personality and character.Staying in a Fauji house we have our limitations,there's nothing you can do to the structure or quality of the house, the walls, the flooring, the furniture it's a challenge to create a personal space within the limitations. Nevertheless we always try our best to create a space which reflects our tastes and cultural heritage. 

This masked wall did it for me and I knew this home had to be featured on the blog.Her home signifies the amalgamation of various cultures within India and outside. 

I love traditional decor,I feel it promises warmth and welcome. We started off by collecting artifacts from different parts of India we visited on our postings and holidays . Our Russia posting helped us in adding some magnificent tapestries, decorative czar czarinas, multicolored matryoshkas ,to our collection.Right now our decor is an eclectic mix of The Egyptian Pharaoh to the crystal Cinderella shoes to our very own Kathakali and Durga  masks.

Folk art displayed thoughtfully!

Goddess Tara...The female Bodhisattva

Did you notice those crystal ballerina shoes?

This is an impressive cosy nook for a quiet evening chit chat and reading to your heart's content.I saw this pic and dreamt of Goa,(the place where Saswati resides) may be because it has such a calming and peaceful vibe to it!

The other areas in her nest are equally serene. She has created a space that talks about her life that is always changing and evolving for the better!
Let me share images of her bedrooms and the garden area.

The shelves are framed too!

Some takeaway tips for you readers from Saswati's home, is that the size of the home doesn't really matter.If you have the decor bug within you, each corner comes alive beautifully!

Those planter shelves on the wall are framed, did you notice that? Such an inexpensive way to create a statement wall! I can make out that her navy life has taught her the nuances of creating an impactful decor.

Be a little thoughtful, decorate it with souvenirs and pieces that hold meaning to you and the rest will fall in place!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Resort decor-Hoysala village resort

This post is going to be on a resort in Hassan,Karnataka called the Hoysala village resort.
Hassan can be your place of stay when you visit the famous temple sites Belur and Halebid.

For a decor blogger, Hoysala village resort was the ultimate treat to the senses. Set among lush greenery, the choicest fruit bearing trees like mango, coconuts, jack fruit and melons, flowering trees and plants this place was cool and it was a real paradise on earth even during the summer months.

The resort has Kerala styled cottages, impressive wood work and something that thrilled me to bits was the paintings on the walls.The paintings were everywhere right from the walls,earthen pots, lamps and even trash bins.These  were simple ones that can remind you of the village folks and their daily activities.Easy floral motifs drawn on the staircases, running high as borders on door and window frames and on the niches in the walls is a sight to remember forever!!!

Apart from these, were wood work that stole my heart right away.And another very important aspect of decor is the flooring.They had vibrant ceramic designed patterns which I loved to the core.Many a times it was such that I didn't quite know whether to look in front or to the stunner below my feet.Such was my confusion!

I know am creating quite a build up! Now, let me not keep you waiting further but lets just hop, skip and jump to view the enthralling pics.

These were some pics at the entrance near the parking lot and the reception area and I knew am going to love this place in totality!

Pay attention to the art on pots,lamps and even 'use me' bins

I liked the arrangement of earthen pots one above the other to create a distinctively unique piece.

Because I clicked so many pics and would like to share all of them with you,have created a collage.Yes, am being a little mean but otherwise it would have become a pic heavy post.The art on walls were strikingly beautiful.If you notice they are very simple motifs depicting nature and activities of the daily life in villages.

Some animal figures drawn on cafeteria walls...

Amidst nature even this metal cart induces the right mix of drama ...

 Now, let me show you the placement of rooms in the resort.There were different arrangements, some in the typical cottage style, some in the 'nallukettu' style which houses rooms on all sides with a central courtyard.

This is a villa styled accomodation
A 'mansion' within their premises is being constructed which shall be open to the guests soon.And my my it was huge with massive woodwork and  brass and copper embellished.The rooms were a real peep into our rich cultural heritage what with copper lamps by the bedside and pendant lights that you keep staring at and not to forget the copper bathtub that was the cynosure of the rest area!

Interiors of the bedroom in the mansion...

The room that we occupied...

Have a look at this room, the ceiling has been covered with traditional Kanjeevaram sarees.

This is their entertainment area where one evening we were enthralled with Bharatnatyam performance.

The tiles had their own story to tell...

At the reception area...

Moving to the restaurant area, again the ceilings had some master paintings.Have a look

I would also like to mention that apart from the interiors and decor that I have so much praised, their food and hospitality was no less.The staff was warm and welcoming, making sure that we had a comfortable and pleasant stay throughout.
The buffet included a delicious spread of the traditional and the continental.

As the evening set, the lamps were lighted and the place became quite and I sat here in tranquility,enjoying each micro second, for this is what we miss in our monotonous city life.

Hope you enjoyed this post.Whenever you make plans to visit this side of Karnataka, do not miss Hoysala Village Resort. Highly recommended, if you go by my words!

Coming up next is a home tour on the blog.Stay tuned folks!

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