Thursday, 30 December 2010

Off to Mcleodganj for a few days to celebrate New Year's eve in the mountains.

Have a good one and see you in the new year!

Saturday, 25 December 2010

Mr. Naresh, maker of Santa suits and Santa caps!
I met him a day too late or would have visited his factory and bought a suit. Unfortunately all are now sold out, I'll have to wait till next year.

Merry Christmas everyone!

Friday, 24 December 2010

my machine is here!!!
so is Ahmed bhai!!!

let the embroidery begin.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

 I have been sorting out all the photos I took when I was studying at NIFT in Gujarat. Among hundreds of 'college festival', 'gh 5' and 'hanging out at the gala having a cup of chai' photos; I found these precious ones from our first photography module back in 2003 when Dhimant Panchal was teaching us how to use a camera!

I have used a Canon 500N and 35mm Kodak film. 

I am looking forward to my trip to Ahmedabad in January where I'll be meeting up with Meena Kadri to photograph the kite festival, Uttarayan!

Wednesday, 22 December 2010

Received my copy of Pool Magazine in the post this morning. Issue 6 celebrates 50 years of Indian Design. Along with a panel of designers, architects and design researchers like Peter Alwin, Abhijit Bansod, Bimal Patel; I have discussed the journey of Indian Design, its significance and its future. You can read it online here

(Thanks for the mention Sonalee!)

Monday, 20 December 2010

My aunt who runs a boutique in Ludhiana took me to Anzaar bhai's workshop today where he's getting rid of his old embroidery machines, which are now replaced by computerized machines. As sad as I am to see this happening, I'm absolutely delighted at the prospect of buying one (of the 60 that he is hoping to shift) off him. I will be bringing it home on Thursday morning and employing my favourite embroidery man, Ahmed bhai for a few months to make up some cushions and napkins for me.

I have been preparing for this and therefore acquired some of the following tools! 

the masterji chalk - I remember going to the tailor with my mum when I was little and loving all the colourful chalks that he used  to mark the pattern on the fabric. This particular brand is called मोहिनी or 'mohini'. 

the master scissor - While my special 'master scissor' (no.10) is being custom made, I have borrowed one for the time being.

embroidery threads (various colours) - mostly Clock and More. the best place to buy in Ludhiana is Mohan (in model town) and Novelty (in bhai randhir singh nagar)

the embroidery scrissors - to finish the pieces and to use as a thread cutter.(nb: made in china)

the 'inchy tape' (tape measure) - only Jyoti tape measure!

darning needles 

on the 'to buy' list - wooden embroidery rings, fusing to put under the fabric, big spool of white cotton thread for the bobbin, tracing paper to transfer the design onto the fabric, neel to physically transfer the design from the 'khakha' (tracing paper design)

I decided to help Anzaar bhai recycle some of the hundreds of Clock and More boxes (emboridery thread boxes) he stores in his workshop. I'm sure he was more than glad to let a few go. These are now neatly piled up in my room. I think I will offer them as gift boxes (should anyone request gift packaging) when I start selling my cushion covers, tea towels and napkins!

 Clock and More are the most popular embroidery threads used in Punjab. these are silky 'resham' threads used to embroider fabric for suits and sarees. Others are Pari Chaap, Pearl and Telephone (from Delhi); and some local ones like Manish and Rose.

(nb: More is like 'Mor' = 'peacock')

I absolutely love the colourful boxes and logos.


Here is some of the packaging of the actual spools. Equally colourful and delightful!

Saturday, 18 December 2010

found some old photos and letters my mum had rescued from our old house before it was demolished. here are a few that I love. 

the postcard was written by daddy (my grandfather) to bua (my auntie) in 1958 when he was travelling, the letter was written by my great grand parents to mummy (my grandmother) after she married daddy and moved to India from Pakistan. 

the last few photos are of mummy's best friend, shanta aunty. i remember her fondly, she had the coolest spectacles.

I'm still scanning but was keen to share so there's more to come.

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

        image © matt parry

If you're in Archway, stop by the Selvedge shop... in the window is a piece designed by Celia for the 9th day of Christmas and by me for the 12th day of Christmas!

head over to columbia road on sunday morning to buy your Christmas tree this year! I love being home, but must admit I'm really missing the Christmas festivities this year. 

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Had a lovely few days in Pushkar with my friends, Neha and Simran. Rajasthan is such a colourful and vibrant state. We didn't buy any camels, but got a quotation for one - Rs.12,000.
We didn't buy. 

However, a horse was sold during the fair for 50 Lakhs.

More photos to come.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010