Thursday, June 30, 2011

The chair DIY!

First off.....before I even begin to show you the completed time I blab on about embarking on an elaborate DIY, will someone please remind me that I don't have the patience to pull off such projects? And....... secondly also tell me its not a good idea to have a (totally unnecessary) spat with the one and only detail oriented perfectionist who will help you on such ambitious projects and stupidly tell him I don't need his help, I can easily manage on my own????? And thirdly, if in spite of your warnings I still restrict it to a Fri/Sat or Sunday (my yoga free days) so my yoga master doesn't decide to do a killer upper body workout right after 3 hrs of rope pulling!!!!!!!

Yes, so finally after what seems like an eternity, the chair is done. Granted, it turned out well, but I almost gave up a few times and I was really tempted to just ditch the project. My palms were sore from all the tugging and stretching, my shoulders were killing me, I had to sit on the floor while working on it and my legs were anchoring it while I was working......all in all a painful process. But every round of weaving showed a nice pattern emerging, and that kept me motivated. 

AND besides, I had already blogged about it, so I soldiered on, afraid of public humiliation! 

So without further ado, I present to you...THE ROPE CHAIR! You'll notice that towards the end the rope lengths start to weave in and out like an inebriated Irishman (please, I mean no offense to the Irish, its just a colloquialism). But what the heck, its DONE!!!

And was it just a funny coincidence that soon after I wrote this post I see this on Apartment Therapy????

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Contest and Giveaway!

Vasudha of Cherishing Spaces is having a moodboard contest! I mean, who doesn't love creating moodboards. Its like playing house house all over again! I have spent many an hour hurry up and get your entries in to her.

And then, Shanthi of Home Shanthi Home is having a giveaway! Now this one is was tricky! If you think really really hard - outside the box - you will get it! Nope, bribing me for clues!
All the best and Good luck!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Online design resources!

As design bloggers, we need all the help we can get sourcing gorgeous pictures of homes and ideas for our readers. While it may take half an hour to write a post, we all know the real truth - in essence it takes much more than that. By the time we have found the exact pictures was want, copy them, paste them, edit them, crop them and so on....we have spent a good couple of hours. At least for me that's the amount of time it takes.

So the past few days my main exercise - in addition to DIY's I started but have no patience to finish - has been to bookmark and categorize some great resources. Hopefully it will make the job easier next time.....! So here are a few I am sharing with you....WARNING...they are all addictive! - pictures and images ranging the entire gamut of design......modern, traditional, contemporary, eclectic, Asian, Indian, Mediterranean. Ideas on virtually everything....and the best part is you can create and Ideabook and stash all your fav pics there. If you are looking for something in particular, type it in and voila - its there! If you yourself would like to submit a post, you can contribute to it too. In fact recently Anu of My Dream Canvas did just that. And then twice a week your inbox will be flooded with some cool stuff from them.

Elle Decor's LookBook - similar to Houzz, but a notch above in terms of rooms shown. Lovely rooms to just gaze at....I have spent hours here. Really inspiring.
HGTV's Designer's Portfolio - Pretty much along the lines of both Houzz and Elle Decor's LookBook, but more wide ranging in style and design I think.
Pinterest - Ok this one is too much fun. Its like pinning up your favorite things on a corkboard...only you are doing it on this website. I stayed away from it for  along time thinking it was too tedious, but my goodness, it is so easy. You sign up, attach this little bookmarklet to your bookmark bar, and every time you come across a cool image you like, you pin it to your board(s). I love it. Here is a link to my boards....! Also a great resource if you are looking for something. I love this site.
And then my latest love...Olioboard! Its an online resource to create a mood board. I don't know how I missed it all these days! It has a built in library of items - furniture, accessories, linens, bath products everything. You can also create your own library of things you find on the web. Similar to Pinterest, you use the bookmarklet to "add to Olioboard". Then they stay in your library. The funnest part is creating the just drag things onto it, resize and reorient them. And its very helpful to see a room "pulled together"! Really fun! Here is one I messed around with last week......I stayed up till midnight Olioboarding!!!!
So go ahead and check them out if you haven't already! My resolution to stay away from the computer one day a week is getting harder and harder with all these fabulous fun things out there!

Sunday, June 26, 2011


Yes, I've been a busy little bee! DIY-ing like there is no tomorrow!

After that kitchen shelf and then the pottery project, the DIY bug really got me! Plus, I have made a conscious decision to stay away from the computer every Saturday, and so with time hanging heavy on my head, I start prowling around the house to see what I can do!

Here are 2 more of my latest projects.....

I took some old unused glass spice jars, roped them together by tying the rope around the neck of each bottle and then stringing them all together, added some water and money plants....and made a jungle for my birdies in my bird mobile! Not at all my original idea, I was inspired by this post by Sahana! I just added the bird mobile twist to it.

And then this one!! The BIGGIE! An old rope chair that came unravelled thanks to my chubby black dog that sits on it and watches the world go by....
here is an old bedspread.....too small for any of our beds! 
So after  many tedious but necessary calculations.....
I cut it into strips lengthwise
 24 strips, 8 feet long, 3" wide
Then twisted each into a rope and started tying them onto the frame, across and back, knotting each strip on one side
 4 strips done
 Weaving it in and out was very tough, but had to be done for strength
 This is how far I got yesterday, I added a few more today. Its going to be another 2-3 days before its done. All the stretching and pulling and knotting...cannot do too much on one day.

I will post pics as soon as I am done! I only showed a few pics here, for a more step-by-step look, go here!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Its a small world!

It really is a small world. Many of you may remember this post I did a few months ago....where I had posted some really really old family pics, photos about 70 plus years old which my mom dug up for me. Here are a couple which are relevant to this post I am writing...

This was my great great grandfather (mom's mom's dad), an eminent lawyer Manjeri Rama Iyer!
And these are my great grandparents (the couple standing in the back). In other words, the lady is my great grandmother, daughter of M. Rama Iyer in the picture above!
So imagine my surprise ( I really almost fell off the chair) when a few days ago I got this e mail from a person and this is what he said..."Hi there....I am "so and so" ! Guess we are related as Manjeri Rama Iyer is my great grandfather. It would be nice if you can mail me." WOWZERS!!! And then he sent me these 2 pics which showed.....

 My g.g. grandfather Manjeri Rama Iyer in the middle with my g. grandmother Rajalakshmi to his right, and this person's grandfather standing in the back row.

But of course, I remained cautious (too many weird people out there) and sent him a reply asking him to tell me who he was, and give me some family details. And so we emailed back and forth, him telling me how for years he has been searching for more info on his family, including making trips to his village in Kerela scouting for more info. Then, and this is really a clincher, he sent an attachment of a family tree he had come across on the web, which had some of his family info in it. And I WAS ON IT!!!

And soon the mystery was cleared up. His great grandfather/my great great grandfather are one and the same person. 

For you genealogy philes who can handle the intricacies - his grandfather and my great grandmother (the lady in the pic) are siblings. His father and my grandmother are first cousins......bottom line is he and my mom are second cousins!!!!

Isn't that really something? The power of the Internet and especially Facebook, never ceases to amaze me!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The magic of block printing!

I've featured them before here, but now I want to share with you some really lovely pictures on their step by step block printing methods. A quick recap for those of you who don't know about them...Saffron Marigold is a California based linen company making the most exquisite block printed linens for the home!

Recently, I have had the pleasure of starting to write for their blog, (and no, that's not why I am featuring this, but because it is the most comprehensive step-by-step pics I have seen :-)), and it has really opened my eyes to the detail and workmanship that goes into their products! Block printing is nothing new to us, we've all seen it many many times before, but each time I see the process, I marvel at it! What genius!!!

Take a look at it is the process to print their latest launch - Dance O Peacock!

Printing the border
Border done -- this will become brown after the acid wash
First fill color which will become forest green after the acid wash
Second fill which becomes turquoise
Third fill which becomes ochre
Fourth fill color which becomes cobalt blue
The border in its final glory - before acid wash. The magic happens and final colors takes shape post washing
Main print outline being stamped
Main print first color - becomes forest green
Main print second color becomes ochre
Main print becomes turquoise
Main print fourth color becomes cobalt blue
All done - the peacock linen air drying above the printing tables. Once washed, they take on their final colors
The end result - absolutely gorgeous!
I only showed enough pictures for you all to get an idea, but if you want to see the whole process for this print, check this out

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Makeover pics

In case you haven't heard, Prismaa online magazine which was launched in April, is having a stylish home contest. So I thought since I was taking pics of the newly painted living and dining areas, I would take some new pics of the house and send them in for what its worth. I need to take new pics anyway...

But for you readers, here are those pics I promised you of the newly painted rooms. This was the color I picked, a sort of brown......the color in the photographs never looks exactly like it is. But then again, I have a very very basic camera and my photography skills are equally maybe thats why! And it was a cloudy day so I had to turn on all the lights which gave it more yellowy look...but I do like it.

Click on the images to view them larger!

And in case you haven't read Prismaa, I urge you to do so. Its lovely!