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From hand-painted sneakers to Bollywood poster art, we scout out the best of Mumbai’s fashion and shopping scene.

Designer Payal Khandwala To Open Colaba Store
Wednesday, 01 October 2014 17:57


After news of fashion designer Gaurav Gupta’s flagship store at Kala Ghoda, comes Payal Khandwala’s store that’s set to open in Colaba on the 16th of October.

The artist/designer’s space (in the same building as fashion store Bungalow Eight), will serve as part studio and part store. Expect what you’ve seen at Good Earth before – simple, solid coloured dresses, kurtas and tops with a focus on textiles – but also a whole lot of brand new.

For instance, Payal will be experimenting with prints for the first time (think geometric), and will also set up a section for silk saris and limited edition brocade pieces developed in collaboration with weavers in Banaras. Our hearts just skipped a pleat.

Store review on bpb soon!

Getting there: Payal Khandwala at Grants Building, Arthur Bunder Road, above Bungalow Eight, Colaba. View her Facebook page here.

 

 
Designer Prints + Stationery By Nasha
Wednesday, 01 October 2014 13:41


What: Design by Nasha - fashion designer Payal Singhal’s print designer will make your stationery, email  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , visit http://designbynasha.com, price according to customization.

Why: If you’ve been admiring the striking black Ottoman prints on designer Payal Singhal’s clothes, we found the graphic company that created them. Design by Nasha is based out of New York, but they’ll take orders for personalized stationery and not that we want to encourage it, but wedding cards too! And if you’d rather not do the distance, Nasha will be in Mumbai fromOctober 9-11 to do a pop up store. Ulterior motifs? Event details to be revealed on their Facebook page shortly.

When: You need to chart (paper) your schedule for October.

 
Order A Handmade Warship
Monday, 29 September 2014 23:26

Order A Handmade Warship

Ships with impressive sails to take you away, to breeze through a storm, and ensure you’re in fighting form.

Equipped with vessels for any kind of day you’re having is Rio Kapadia, an actor by profession, who handcrafts miniature wooden war ships, fishing boats and fleet ships for custom orders. Why ships? He leaves us with a slightly vague “I’ve always been fascinated by ships,” answer, launching into a dreamy state that never allows him to fully answer our question. If he has always been someone who likes “working with his hands”, he could have picked any DIY project. Why ships? “They just seemed like the most complicated thing to build at the time, and that’s where I wanted to start. Complicated,” he says.

In Ship Shape

With no formal training in art or design, Rio is completely self-taught “through the arduous process of trial and error”. Once he has an idea of the kind of ship he wants to build, he sets out sailing through markets to source material, from wood to the minute fittings he sometimes finds at an old button shop in Bandra. Building one vessel takes about 45 days, he tells us, a hobby that isn’t worthy of Mumbai’s brand of patience. “The most difficult part is actually storing these ships. There just isn’t any space to put them in my apartment anymore!”

An apartment where a wave hello will get you the low down on Rio’s shore…er show reel, and recollections of his parts in Chak De India and Dil Chahta Hai. All this while he points to the odd self-built furniture piece and refers to his latest sketch.

Sale Away

Rio hopes that with the ship he builds you, you will start to appreciate objects that are constructed by hand. “Every time I cut a piece of wood that’s too big, I have to redo the entire process - saw, scrape, sandpaper and polish for about 250 to 350 pieces per ship. The math has to work out perfectly. ”

If you ask nicely though, Rio will take a custom order and tweak designs based on your requirements and likes. “Promise to be patient, though,” he says.

We nod, thinking of our dreamboat, with a large wooden deck and puffy sails to drift into the sunset with.

Getting There: To order, call Rio Kapadia at 98211181520, prices start at Rs 10,000, approximately 45 days for manufacture and production of each ship.

 
A New Site For Boys, New Shoes for Girls
Monday, 29 September 2014 23:26

For Girls: Charlotte Olympia Comes To Bandra

Considering this writer has two vinyls, a wooden barrel, a heart and a hand that all masquerade as bags, she’s always been a big fan of Charlotte Olympia. The British luxury bag and shoe brand that constructs heart-shaped platforms and turns Chinese take out boxes into inspiration for bags, is now available at the Kitsch store at Bandra 190!

So there’s no Chinese Take Me Out Bag or flamingo shoes here, but there is a corner of fun accessories to start with. The collection includes the Fantastic Dolly Suede Fan Tassel Pump; the Shanghai Express heels that resemble blue and white Chinaware; their trademark Kitty & Co flats; and a pair of gold ones that looked too generic to hang with these odd balls. The bag collection is also small, a fistful of see-through box clutches with spiders for clasps. Bandra bugger?

Getting there: Kitsch at Bandra 190, Turner Road, Bandra (W), approx. Rs 60,000 for a pair of Kitty & Co shoes.

For Boys: BroCode's Cuff Love

If picking out accessories is akin to slow death, The Bro Code is here to ensure that the noose around your neck is a stylish one. A new e-store for men, TheBroCode.in stocks cuff links, neck ties, bow ties, lapel pins and pocket squares.

The variety isn’t huge – thetiebar.com has a lot more and takes approximately the same amount of time to ship – but give this newly launched website a chance. If you’re over the gimmicky cufflinks widely available these days, check out the more grown up silk knot cufflinks, the White Swish bowtie and the silver tie clips.

We’re making (g)room for a more dapper you.

Getting there: Visit thebrocode.in, Rs 500 for a bow tie, free shipping on all orders, dispatched in 48 hours.

 
Sponsored: Masaba Gupta, Monica Dogra and Shivan & Narresh on Stylista
Monday, 29 September 2014 14:31



***This post is sponsored by Stylista.com***

It will be love at first sight we’re sure, when your purse meets Stylista.com. Your eyes already love what they see, but your vintage money pouch will definitely be floored. On Stylista, bigwig fashion designers create capsule collections that are super stylish, but also quite affordable.

Currently, Stylista.com has launched three new limited edition collaborations designed by resort wear maestros Shivan & Narresh, Masaba Gupta, and singer/actress Monica Dogra. We were there with a big spoon, to grab bites of the deliciousness. See what we loved below:

Monica Dogra: Poetry & Poses

The singer/actress’s fashion debut comes with the same infectious ease she carries on stage. The limited edition collection for Stylista is all about bohemian maxi dresses, jersey dresses, crop tops – basically something your cool Bandra girlfriend would throw on for lunch with a pair of flats. Personally, we see ourselves lounging around in this black lace dress and writing poetry.

Masaba Gupta: Turn On The Fan

The print-cess charming of the fashion world works with four main motifs in this collection – the knife, vintage television, typewriter and bicycle. These appear on bright yellow pants, jump suits that promise to ‘flutter and flatter’, crop tops, shorts and shirt dresses. Still reading? Go wear your television!

Shivan & Narresh: Resort To This

We’d love to attend this maillot college, but if like us you think their wares have gotten frightfully expensive, Stylista has a gift for you. The limited edition collection by the resort wear designers features a drastic price drop on adorable swimsuits that start as low as Rs 3,000. You’ll love the basic Itsy Bitsy bikini, but also the ones with candy stripes, and nautical designs.

***This post is sponsored by Stylista.com***

 
Slim Jim Smoking Paraphernalia
Friday, 26 September 2014 12:54


What: Slim Jim, delivers paraphernalia for your joint, view and shop on the Facebook page here, Rs 750 for double wraps blunts.

Why: Now bpb has never really encouraged or supported the smoke scene, but if you’re in the circle check out Slim Jim. This company delivers Slimjim skins, blunt wraps, filter tips, vaporisers and roach booklets to your home. Wrap blunts come in cognac and blueberry flavours and the roaches box is imprinted with smiley faces. (b)Elated wishes!

When: You need to open a joint account.

 
Catch Lovebirds At Bungalow 8
Friday, 26 September 2014 12:46


What: Lovebirds pop up at Bungalow 8, Grants Building, 1st,2nd,3rd floors, 17 Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba, call 9920135457.

Why: If birds of a feather flock together, then fly with us to the brand new Lovebirds pop up today. The Delhi based design label for women that showed at Fashion Week this year, is known for calm colour palettes and boxy silhouettes. We’re eyeing a pair of black cropped pants and super comfy beige skirt. Ornithologists, take note.

When: The Plumiere Brothers four day show starts today, September 26.

 
Scoop! Gaurav Gupta To Launch First Mumbai Store
Thursday, 25 September 2014 17:17




bpb scoop!


Ever since designer Sabyasachi vacated his old Kala Ghoda store, we've been wondering who would move in. Turns out, the new tenant of this
ground floor space opposite the blue synagogue is also from the fashion fraternity.

Kala Ghoda cliquers, make way for designer Gaurav Gupta, who will use the space for his first standalone store in Mumbai. Opening just ahead
of the festive season in the second week of October, the store will stock his pret and couture collections.

Getting There:
52, Ground Floor, Dr V B Gandhi Marg, Kalaghoda, opens in the second week of October.


 
Shop: Phantom Hands For Vintage Finds
Thursday, 25 September 2014 10:05

 

Someone in Mumbai bought a one piece only giant industrial light bulb and we want it. We held our breath and stamped our feet on the ground, and threw a tantrum almost as bright as this 10,000 watt bulb made by Phillips in the 1930s.

To which Deepak Srinath said he could call his dealer and see if there was another piece. If you call and ask nicely, you might get one too.

Welcome to Phantom Hands, an online Indian vintage store where you’ll drool over this and that, a place where your wants become as urgent as your needs.

Case in point(s): See pair of ink bottles from 1910Chinese fan fire screen1940s apothecary chest, and fun pieces like the vintage leech jar, ceramic hot water bottle, ceramic bed warmer, rotating book cases and this antique board game book  written by the erstwhile Maharaja of Mysore (1799-1868).

Owned and run by TED fellow and artist Aparna Rao and her investment banker husband Deepak Srinath, their collection consists mostly of family heirlooms and pieces sourced from antique dealers and collectors in the South of India. Yes, some of them are hideously expensive, but if like us you’re a sucker for the old and love a good story, these curated antiques and collectibles on the website are tagged with detailed notes of their history, origin and journey.

While we’re lighting up over the bulb – bigger light bulb means bigger ideas? - Deepak’s heart is chasing after another piece. “We are currently selling a World War II bicycle that folds in half. It’s in great condition and you can actually ride it around too!” he says.

Reason enough to hand over your pay cheque for the month, don’t you think?

Getting there: Antique and Vintage Collectibles by Phantom Hands, visit www.phantomhands.in, email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . Rs. 18,000 for a vintage leech jar, Rs. 8,500 for a pair of antique ink bottles.


 
Apsara Pen Mart: Refill Please
Monday, 22 September 2014 10:29



Remember when a ‘refill’ didn’t mean another round of cocktails, but the fact that your pen needed to be topped up? We were reminded of this plus other retro rituals when we visited Apsara Pen Mart, a rare pen and watch store at Fountain. We came here in search of a gift for a friend, and were also rewarded with flashes of memories from our grandparents’ home – a pocket watch peeking out of a coat, a felt hat resting on the side; a pot of ink on a sloping wooden desk; Urdu lettering plus stories from the partition.

Started in 1962, Apsara Pen Mart originally started out as a roadside stall at Fort. Inside, a rotund Mr Ashraf Kapadia, his fingers gleaming with multiple rings, tells us how he founded the place. “We started off by selling cheap pens on the road, and eventually moved on to more expensive pens and watches from original brands like Cartier, Raymond, Weil. The shift came when the shop started getting frequented by politicians, lawyers and judges in the area, asking for all kinds of pens. ”

If you’re all ears, he loves to chat about this and that, but mostly about people and their pens. “I judge a person’s character by the way he treats his pens,” says Mr. Kapadia, at the same time showing us writing and time instruments available for sale - Waterman Ink, Sailor pens, Rolex Seamasters, Patek Phillpe (on order), Mont Blanc, Parker from 1975, Omega pocket watches. Considering HMT is going out of business soon, ask to see his collection of HMT clocks too. Winding down?

“We were even visited by Mr. & Mrs. Raymond Weil to start a separate dealership in the city exclusively for their watches, but we figured it will be more lucrative to run our own shop,” says Mr. Kapadia, who is now assisted at the shop by his grandson.

Engrave-yard Shift

Our favourite thing about Apsara is that not only can you buy an antique pen here, but also get it engraved with the machine that Mr. Kapadia bought for Rs four lakhs in the 1970s. Since then, pens and watches have been engraved for birthdays, weddings and new jobs. Dear you, type less, write more. 

Mr. Kapadia also does valuations for antique pens and watches – this would be the time to raid your grandma’s cupboard - as well as repairs. They even value confiscated pens and watches from the Customs Department.

At the end, after Mr Kapadia’s quick rant about Chinese-made goods and the need for people to value vintage more, we found our gift. An antique wind up Goldbuhl alarm clock that could easily be a hand model.

Considering Diwali is right around the corner, Apsara Pen Mart might be a fun place to visit. Those antique pocket watches should tick some people right off your gift list.

 

Getting there: Apsara Pen Mart, 65, MG Road, opposite Central Bank, Fort 2267 5945, 22672446, visit http://www.apsarapenmart.com. Closed on Sundays.

 

 
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