Thursday, July 31, 2008

India Inspired Wedding

Here it is! The first On Demand! post
About how to design and style weddings inspired by India
For all my readers who are passionate about

Indian styled wedding can range from subtle and simple, to exuberant display of color, finery and kitsch. Based on whether you want to go for an all out Indian wedding, or have a wedding that has some Indian influence, you can figure out the right balance while planning and designing. There are some very good online resources and event planners who can guide you through the entire process (some listed below). Infact, there are specialized consultants who would help you plan a wedding in India if you so desire! I hope you, and the readers who have mailed me regarding tips on Indian themed weddings, find this post useful.

So with out much further ado
And I now pronounce you, man and woman, to read further! ;-)

Starting with the venue decor: Indian weddings typically have shamiana (tents). You can go wild with colors and even use saris as drapes and coverings. Find more Indian styled tents in one of my earlier post..

Low diwan style seating. Lots of cushions and bolsters on kilim rugs can also do the trick

Hanging tea lights or wax diyas...take your pick! The goal is to be dramatic!

Say it with flowers! Lots of them. Marigold flowers have a special significance in any Indian (hindu) festivities, and are specially used in abundance during weddings.

Styling idea ~ Flowers and diya (tea lights) in brass or terracotta thaals and urlis (plate and urns)

One of the most important aspects of the wedding - the table decor! Colors like turquoise blue, orange, bright pink, plum, red, mustard and gold work well with the Indian theme

Indian style wedding cake! Designs inspired from Indian embroidery and henna designs

And those little details that make all the difference!
Elephant - real and fake, is a quite popular icon in Indian wedding theme :)

Multi hued glass bangles, ornate frames for name cards, zardozi sari fabric can be used for drapes, table covers or napkins, and add a touch of exotic with peacock feathers

Ganesha idol...considered very auspicious during weddings, bride/groom puppets in case some one gets bored from looking at the real bride and groom ;-)

Wooden elephant as a centerpiece, lanterns, wine goblets and miniature jewellery boxes

Embroidered is the limit of how you use fabrics to add to the design

And of course, you have the option of choosing from exquisite Indian bridal dresses and jewellery and apply henna on your hands, and voila! you are all set for an Indian style wedding!

But, Indian wedding attire and styling in another post sometime...
...If you have an On Demand! request!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

New Feature: On Demand!

Well, its time to introduce something new on An Indian Summer. And what better thing to introduce than what you want to see...i.e. you ask me nicely, and you shall get it - On Demand!

I have been receiving many emails from my readers asking for recommendations on a variety of topics...all closely or loosely related to design, decor, travel, shopping and styling with Indian or Asian influence. While some questions require a personal response, some could be of interest to a larger audience. And those are the topics for which I will dig into my inspiration files, tap my creative cells, hum a song, and write up a post on!

So, tell me what you would like to see on An Indian Summer! Drop in a comment, or drop me an email [lookie...the left bar has the email where you can put in your request. And if you also name your favorite song in the request...well, you just got a step ahead in the queue! ;-)]

Look out for the first On Demand! post tomorrow. Nope, I won't tell you what it is! I will just go and relax on this daybed and gaze out of the window. ahem... prepare for tomorrow's post!

Have I told you as yet that I like ladders?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Robin Moore Ede Art

When I was in London earlier this month, I received an email from Piers who introduced me to the Robin Moore Ede Art Gallery. These prints, created by Piers and his father, interior designer Robin Moore Ede, are made on khaadi paper using a technique called Watergraph.

In Piers's own words:

"We call the technique a watergraph, which is a name that seems to describe the marriage of a photograph and a watercolour. We start off with a photograph, then work on them digitally before printing them on khaadi. Each one is then signed, numbered and embossed by my father. He's an interesting character in his own right actually - a well known British interior designer with private houses for Dustin Hoffman and Freddie Mercury in his portfolio, as well as big commercial jobs. Some of his drawings are in the collection of the National Portrait Gallery, and some of his furniture in the V&A"

Piers himself has been the winner of the DH Lawrence Prize for Travel Writing for the year 2007, for his book Honey and Dust! The art in his gallery reflect his many travels and keen eye for capturing details. I particularly liked the India coastal prints in the collection.

Do take a look at their online gallery, and if in London, pay them a visit!... while I figure out where to put up the two lovely prints Piers very graciously sent to me. Thank you Piers and Robin!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Miami Beach Home For Sale $15,900,000

2046 N. Bay Rd. Miami Beach Florida For Sale $15,900,000

2046 N. Bay Road, Miami Beach is a great address, because the property includes a magnificent new classic contemporary home boasting 15,000 square feet of interior living space, on a very generous sized lot of 38,314 square feet (almost an acre). The water views from this particular location are very charming and the property has 112 linear feet of waterfront. The Miami Beach house is on the market for sale, with an asking price of $15,900,000.

That amounts to just over $1000 per square foot of living space. The gorgeous estate has an 80 feet pool, a gazebo and spa, a 4-car garage, and a guardhouse. It’s a beautiful home located in the very heart of Miami Beach. When you consider that just a few months ago, a Miami Beach condo sold for more $2,000 per square foot, it seems like a pretty good price for those who can afford the very best.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Real Estate Market Expected To Improve With Election Of New President

Almost half of all homebuyers are optimistic about the real estate market. According to a new survey recently released, and conducted by Harris Interactive®, 44% of homebuyers surveyed believe that the real estate market will improve when a new President of the United States is elected.

The survey further indicates a healthy underlying demand for homeownership. 41% of current homeowners surveyed said that they plan to purchase a home once again, and 47% of renters said that they plan to purchase a home within the next 5 years.

The survey was not without negatives. Approximately 4 out of 5 homebuyers consider high home prices to be the number 1 barrier to purchasing a home. The second greatest barrier to buying a home for a prospective buyer is coming up with the down payment, and the third greatest barrier is a lack of confidence in the present economy.

Crime rates, proximity to conveniences, and property taxes were found to be the 3 predominant factors in choosing a neighborhood.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Housing Stimulus Bill - NAR Update

As Congress gets ready to take leave in August, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) is making every effort to get a housing stimulus bill to the desk of the President. In the informative video below, Jerry Giovaniello, a chief real estate lobbyist, explains the importance of this legislation to both the housing market, and to realtors.

National Association Of Realtors Housing Stimulus Update July 22,2008


I came across an Argentinian design magazine Espacio Living and loved what I found there. Simple, classic homes and design. Effective use of colors and a knack of finding aesthetic appeal in day to day objects. Sharing some of the images that I liked the best...

A beautiful colonial home surrounded by greenery

Nature comes in through the massive glass panes. Love the old style sewing machine and thread spools in the table!

While I am ambivalent about the color of the wall, I liked the effect of everything else put together

Umm...this bathroom reminds me of Merchant-Ivory movies..

Incredible colors! I am becoming more and more tempted to re-paint my off-white walls

Kitschy! I can imagine how pretty this door would look in the evenings with the lights lit up!

Summer nights in this room...gentle breeze, and some mosquitoes for company ;-). Love the effect of a dreamy mosquito net..

The hanging paper lantern is of one of the most simple and common of designs, but still looks so pretty and perfect in the setting

A section in the e-zine covered coastal design. All things white and blue. Rugged, well lived in, made up of straw and things the sea brings to the shore occasionally. And perfect for simple living!

I have the urge to sandpaper all the wooden furniture in my home when I look at this! And paint them white! The two small settees are very common in India too. They are called moodha here..

Detail of one of the walls. Do you know how to make paper boats? Find a quick tutorial here! :)

Who could resist this room? I can't!

Love the wall lights and the shell thingie. And am wishing and hoping that the fish up on the wall isn't a real one... (it can't be..right? You can't stuff up fishes and hang them up. ... Or, can you?)

Ready for some fining dining? The kilim rug underneath will warm your feet as the food warms your bellies!

All images from Espacio Living

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Quiet nights of quiet stars...

Quiet chords from my guitar

Floating on the silence that surrounds us

Quiet thoughts and quiet dreams quiet walks by quiet streams

And a window that looks out on the mountains and the sea, oh how lovely

[Corcovado by Antonio Carlos Jobim]

Hello hello! Thought of sharing with you the song I am humming since morning today... and also thought of sharing with you David Howell Design's house in Mexico, that I chanced upon in Interior Design e-zine :)

Please love the brick work in the images below, as much as I do!

I had a great time in Munich...all work and no play though [apart from wining and dining in quaint cafes in the evenings]. Am in London right now, and will be back in India by end of this week. Do keep watching for more regular posts then!