Friday, January 29, 2016

Bug attack, a dose of prettiness and Goodnight!

A bad bug has hit me hard this time… and as I wait for the antibiotics to take effect, waiting to win my battle… am under “forced rest” spell, focusing on eating healthy… no whining… no moping… just recovering… replying to a couple of emails… if I still haven’t replied to any of your emails, you need to blame this bug!! I will try and reply as early as I can…. Meanwhile please keep the emails pouring in!!

Here I am…sneaking in to be with you … playing some good mellow music (click here to listen)… and looking at these beautiful home pictures… feeling the comfort and sharing all these prettiness with you!
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Goodnight to my side of the world and a beautiful morning to the other side!!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Tia Pakhi

Tia Pakhi is a popular label in many households that love Indian textiles, traditions, culture and craft. The French designer of Tia Pakhi, Anais Basu, exposed her fans to a beautiful blend of colours, craft and textile traditions. Her collection is pure joy and diverse. I am completely smitten on how she has brought out the simplicity and elegance of traditional Kantha embroidery on clothes, accessories and home linen. Her passion for textile and her love for India’s rich cultural heritage are definitely reflected in her collection.  I love the way she has translated the old vintage designs with new and made it classy and chic. It’s hard for me to describe what I see and feel … so here have a look!!


Too much eye candy right? Let’s move on to hear more from Anais and her love for Tia Pakhi

Anais, tell us a bit about you…. Your journey that brought you to India…Have you had any formal design background?
I studied Fashion and textile design in Paris. My dream was to visit India to discover its rich textile heritage and culture. My design sensibility was always attracted to natural yarns and bright colours. With my diploma in my pocket I flew to India for the first time in 2006 for an internship in a textile export-house in Calcutta. Although I had read and informed myself a lot before coming it was an overwhelming experience when I arrived! I very quickly knew I would be happy here. Little did I know that I would not only fall in love with the textiles but with the man of my life! This is how few years down the line I am living in Calcutta with my husband, my beautiful 10month old daughter and a TIA PAKHI :) 

Why the name Tia Pakhi? How did it all begin?
Although in my first internship I was developing designs for computerized embroideries, it is on my personal time that I got the chance to discover more of the handcrafts and textiles techniques of embellishment. Kantha embroidery immediately attracted my eye for its simplicity yet great intricacy. I loved the texture it lends to the fabric and how it gives vibrancy to a simple design. I then got the chance to develop few samples of designs for my own portfolio with some artisan I had been introduced to. It was the first step in conceptualizing TIA PAKHI a brand of textiles dedicated to reviving and contemporizing Kantha embroidery. 

TIA PAKHI is the Bengali word for the green Parrots which used to fly around the region of Bengal. They're also disappearing slowly as many handcrafts. I liked this name for its easy pronunciation in many languages and the parrot of course represents the exotic and colourful aspect of my work. TIA PAKHI could sound like a designer's name if one doesn't know the language. In fact I occasionally receive emails addressed to me as "dear TIA PAKHI " :)

Where do you draw your inspirations for your designs? Tell us a bit about your collection.
I mainly draw inspiration from Nature, Architecture, vintage ethnic textiles. Colour is my great passion. I can spend hours selecting colours and looking for new combinations. 

I also love paintings and illustrations. Free hand colourful drawings from various illustrators and painters. An organic and free style which makes designs so lively. 

My latest collection is inspired by lush tropical foliages intermingling and intertwined with some accent pieces such as Toucans or butterflies, adding some movement and liveliness to this green setting

How would you describe your design style and do you have a signature touch with your designs?
My design style is firstly very colourful! I choose specifically minimalist designs in order to enhance the handwork and the colour combinations. I feel that these are the key points of my work. I love bold and rounded designs in large sizes with colour blocking and a hint of humour. 

What is your big dream for Tia Pakhi?
My big dream for TIA PAKHI would be to open a store in Paris. I would like more people from that side of the world to know about the beautiful handwork done here in India yet with a style they can easily apply to contemporary setting. 

What décor tips would you like to give my readers?
My decor tip would be: not to follow any rules but create the ambiance that you love. I feel it is mostly the care and personality that one puts in his home which makes the difference which makes it inviting. I am a fan of very eclectic homes with a mix and match of different styles and objects from different periods and places.

Thanks Anais for sharing your passion and journey with us!!
If you get to Calcutta, please make sure you visit her boutique. From what I gather she has tastefully decorated her store and I hope I get to visit her boutique one day!! Click here to browse through her website or here to visit her Facebook page.

Images via Tia Pakhi


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Broccoli and Chicken Soup

Recently I received a handwritten letter, which is a rare phenomenon these days. Call me old-fashioned but I do miss those days where we used to wait for the postman to bring the letter… and when you receive and read, the words written in the letter are full of love and warmth…. There was something charming about it and I miss that.  The letter I received was so timely, as I have been in and out of flu these days and those words cheered me up.

Considering that my immunity is all haywire this month, without guilt I decided to make the ultimate comfort food. I made my favorite soup that is warm for our winter, full of nutrients and incredibly flavorful. It’s one of my favorites. And I also decided to make this for a dear friend who has been unwell for the past two weeks. I felt pampered recently when a dear friend, who is family to me, dropped home some food quite unexpectedly when I was unwell (thank you Shilpa!). So I decided to pay it forward.

So I quickly made a creamy and pureed Broccoli Chicken Soup. Here is my version… remember it’s a little rich….. But who cares as far its soothing and makes you jump back on your feet.

Broccoli & Chicken Soup


·         5-6 broccoli crowns, stems chopped off (or frozen broccoli)

·         1/2 cup cooked chicken cubes (breast piece)

·         2 tablespoon chopped Onion

·         1/4 cup finely chopped carrot

·         1/4 cup chopped green onions

·         1 tablespoon chopped garlic

·           2 tablespoon chopped celery

·         1 tablespoon chopped parsley

·         2 bay leaf

·         2 cups chicken broth (use chicken broth cube)

·         3 tablespoons butter

·         3 tablespoons flour

·         1/2 cup milk

·         Olive Oil

·         Cream 2 Tablespoon

·         1 tablespoon Cashew nut paste (optional, I used for flavor) (soak a couple of cashew nuts in warm water for ten minutes and blend it into paste with 1 tablespoon of water)

·         Salt and Pepper to taste


1.       In a pot, sauté onion, garlic, celery and bay leaf till soft.

2.       Add broccoli, carrot and chicken and sauté for 2 minutes.

3.        Then add broth, parsley and cook until broccoli and carrot are soft.

4.       Use a blender or an immersion blender to puree the broccoli mixture.

5.       Melt butter in a separate pot. Whisk in flour, then slowly pour in the milk and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and allow mixture to thicken (takes 1-2 minutes).

6.       Add butter/milk mixture to pureed broccoli mixture, stir to combine, and heat thoroughly.

7.       Then add a little cream, cashew nut paste and salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with parsley and serve it hot.


·         To save time, make ahead cooked chicken and cashew nut paste.

·         If you want to make pure vegetarian soup, please substitute chicken broth with vegetarian. And chicken cubes with potato cubes or cauliflower florets or Zucchini.

·         To make it richer, you can add cheddar cheese towards the end. There are plenty of variations to this soup. Please let me know if you have an interesting variation to this soup.

All images are clicked by me


Thursday, January 7, 2016

Small Space Coziness

My first post to kick start the new year!

Lately I have been drawn towards small spaces that are cozy and beautiful and I find myself collecting and bookmarking small spaces. I always believe every home, big or small, can benefit comfort and coziness. You can turn a smallest room into an inviting retreat, without clutter and look larger than it appears.

Here are some tricks to make your tiny apartment look expansive

Visually to open up your space, choose furniture that has slim legs and have a simple clutter free furniture arrangement. Choose small multifunctional furniture pieces  with storage that will make the room more airy.

Image via Lonny, Photographed by Attic Fire Photography

Colour Scheme

Use light and cooler tones to reflect light to make the room more spacious. Try to limit the use of dark shades as it can make your space feel confined and restricted.

Image via Lonny

The best way to manage clutter is to take advantage of unused vertical space.  Incorporate high mounted shelves or hangings shelves and storage compartments that will free space on your floor. This will also draw your eyes upward giving an illusion of a bigger room. Also make sure the shelves and storage compartments are light colours in order to blend well with the walls.

Image via Lonny

Use of proper light is an important factor. To me a room is never cozy enough, if it doesn’t have the right amount of light.  If your space has huge windows then you are blessed to have lots of natural light. Stick to sheer window treatments to take advantage of natural light. Use of mirrors helps in reflecting light to areas that lacks natural light. If you love socializing and entertaining, use bright lights for large gatherings and smaller ones like table lamps for intimate gatherings.

Image via All Day Chic

To breed an instant warmth and texture to your space add a lush rug or a fluffy throw on your sofa. Plants too add depth and warmth to a room. Hang a large art piece or frame instead of small pieces of artwork on your wall. This will create a focal point to your room and thereby making your room look spacious. At the same while accessorizing try to embrace a minimalistic approach to avoid cluttered look.

Image via Lonny, Photographed by Patrick Cline

I hope these tips were useful and you get to incorporate it in your space. If you have turned around your small space into a warm retreat, feel free to share at

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Hello 2016!!

2015 was a year that was good to me and a year that flew fast… it was a year of milestones, revelations and discovery. It’s the year I picked up a paintbrush and started painting away… a year where I came across many dynamic artists and entrepreneurs… a year I learned to be continuously grateful by counting all my blessings and this helped me focus on my journey. The tragic events around the world did disturb me and have an impact on me in some way. But my blogging journey has kept me in focus on beauty around me.

This year I hope to discover more of the “unknown”… I hope it’s a year of good changes… and I hope I get my daily shot of inspirations from the creative sphere and get to share with you all.
Thank you all for spending 2015 with me!! Wishing each one of my dear readers, a Blessed New Year with good health, happiness and full of handpicked inspirations from my world of lifestyle and décor!!