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

Sponsored- E-Shop: Sigh Over Elitify
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:05


If hopping in a cab and going to Tiffany’s is the route to exterminate the blues (and also the “mean reds”,) surfing Elitify.com is its online equivalent.

Author Truman Capote’s heroine Holly Golightly, owner of said “mean reds” would find the second option far more convenient. Why? Elitify has enough pretty things to re-assure Ms Golightly that “nothing bad can happen to you here”.

Take for instance a pair of dinner plates that look like they’re printed with your grandmother’s prizewinning roses and a floral Michael Kors maxi to rival its bloom; a gorgeous pair of brogues the colour of red wine and the latest gaming consoles to savour when you have the time. Delicious. 

Browse of Cards

There are many products on Elitify that will make you sigh, an e-store that neatly categorises its international designer stock into Men, Women, Kids, Home, Beauty, Grooming and the newest, Gizmos. Besides being the only Indian e-commerce to have an official tie-up with Bally and Porsche Design, they also stock a bunch of other super labels like Prada, Paul Smith, Tory Burch, Marc Jacobs, Kate Spade, Bobbi Brown, Urban Decay and more. See below for bpb’s favourite picks!

Gizmo Alert

bpb’s resident gadget head spent an hour in Elitify’s new Gizmo section to find fitness gadgets, cameras, bluetooth headphones, laptop and tablet covers, portable chargers, sleep trackers, speakers, gaming consoles, video games and enough to keep you occupied and waiting impatiently for your next pay cheque. The photographer in him is most excited about the Quadricopter that flies around with your camera mounted on it.

Heart Our Cart

Here’s brown paper bag is putting in its summer cart for the season:

The Juicy Couture Bow Chic Tie Bandeau Maillot in sea green: That’s half the beach already!

Jil Sander Square Sunglasses: Sometimes it’s okay to be square.

Jet Set Striped Travel Tote by Michael Kors: Just a reminder that you need to go somewhere other than here.

Club Monaco check patterned shorts for men: We can picture your beau on a boat already!

Mini Jambox Bluetooth Speaker from Jawbone: It’s a lovely sky blue colour too!  

Glasgow Tassel Penny Loafers for men: So nautical!

Three Tier Chocolate Fondue Fountain: Okay this isn’t particularly summery, but you never know when you might need one of these, right?

Godinger Gramercy Decanter: All the better to watch Mad Men Season 7 with.

Cheers!

Getting there: Visit Elitify.com.

 
Store Review: Michael Kors, Lower Parel
Monday, 21 April 2014 10:53



Animal print rug. Elenor Rugburn. Bags and Band Aids. Black Hamilton Satchel. Black Sabbath concert.

Our mid-week reviewing of the new Micahel Kors store and our weekend viewing of Almost Famous melded together as we tried to retrieve scenes from memory.

Tote Unquote

The new Kors store – first in Mumbai – sits at the ground floor of Palladium Mall, with walls of totes and gleaming cases of watches. Somewhere a poor faux Zebra (or is it a white tiger?) gave up its faux life to turn into an animal print rug that lolls across one half of the store.

Now we’re not wild about Michael Kors, but if you are then note that the Spring/Summer 2014 treats are all on display. Bags in solid colours, with studs, avec polka dots and bearing metallic bubbles vie for your attention. There’s the signature Hamilton Satchel, but we were eying the white bag with fat navy blue stripes, reminiscent of beach towels at seaside resorts. Perfect for summer!

There are also wallets and smaller slings bags with big MK logos on it, if you’re into that kind of bling…err thing.

Sandalous

We walked past the wedges with grommets and went straight to the cute foam flipflops (probably to go with our beach towel bag). But if you don’t want to spend Rs 3,500 on what are essentially like rubber chappals or Rs 5,000 on PVC jelly ones, see the leather tan flats for Rs 11,000. They’re pretty and buttery, seem durable and look like the kind of pair you’ll wear a lot. This will be money well spent.

There’s also a case of metallic Michael Kors watches and a fairly small and unexciting batch of sunglasses that feature mostly aviators.

If you’re a Michael Kors groupie, go, if you haven’t already. And if you’re not, but you’re in the mall, pop in. You may just find a track you like.

Getting there: Michael Kors, ground floor, opposite Moshe’s, Palladium Mall, High Street Phoenix, Lower Parel, 11 am to 9 pm, Rs 11,000 for a pair of sandals; Rs 25,000 for a striped tote.

 

 
Buy This: Cinnamon Toothpicks
Thursday, 10 April 2014 10:50


 

bpb’s product (tooth)pick this week is Goodearth’s pretty and sweetly scented cinnamon toothpicks. Packed in a tropical forest-y box, these are nice to put out during a party and perfect if you’re going to kiss one of the guests after.

The folks behind Goodearth developed it because research shows that cinnamon enhances cognitive processing. Sure, but we know you’re going to buy it for that kiss.

 Getting there: Cinnamon toothpicks available at Goodearth outlets across the city, Rs 550 for a box.

 
Write Wing Leader: Does Bespoke Fountain Pens
Thursday, 03 April 2014 11:16


 

Sareer: We recently learned this word in Urdu class. It means the scratching sound of a pen made on paper. 

We wrote it down with a ball pen and it didn’t seem to do the word justice. And then we thought of what Sanay Shah had said to us a few hours before. “They just don’t feel right. Plus, I hate the use-and-throw nature of ball pens.”

Sanay Shah is 17 years old. He’s been using fountain pens since he was nine, now he crafts them for anyone who wants one, and loves wearing bespoke suits. “You wear them all the time?” we asked, imagining a slight teenage figure wearing well-tailored coats, flaunting his knowledge of sophisticated writing instruments in his slightest gestures. 

“Of course not all the time,” he tells us. One can only hope.

There’s A Nib In The Air

Sanay builds bespoke fountain pens under the name The Penman Co, an entrepreneurial venture that comes from the fact that several engineer members of his family collect fountain pens. “I haven’t enrolled in an engineering course yet, but I am pursuing fountain pens quite seriously,” says Sanay, thinking dreamily about the first Mont Blanc he saw his grandfather use at age nine.

About seven months ago, despairing at the quality and finish of Indian fountain pens, Sanay decided to do something about it. He ordered almost every model of every fountain pen from manufacturers all over India, including those in Chennai, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune. What followed was a ton of research, factory visits, pen collector consults and material imports.

The result: A wooden fountain pen using rosewood, teakwood, burlwood and resin, with a German nib, the first of which was created three months ago. These bespoke pens he takes about four days to make from the time you place an order, ships all over the world, and sells them at a starting price of Rs 6,000. While he focuses on originals, Sanay is also taking fountain pens from a 1950 company called the Airmail Pen Company, refurbishing and selling them.

Newbie? Don’t write him of just yet. Look who all are already using his pens.

To Do (Journa)list

Ever since Sanay Shah (@sanayYshah) tweeted about his venture, he’s had a bunch journalists and writers calling in to get one. From columnist Sidin Vadukut (@sidin) he got his first overseas order, while patrons closer to home include Yahoo India editorPrem Panicker (@prempanicker), Gangs of Wasseypur lyricist Varun Grover (@varungrover) and other bloggers and writers.

Yup, he’s the leader of the write wing, and we think you should join his party. 

Getting there: To order call Sanay on 9930517778 or email  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , follow him on Twitter and Instagram on @sanayYshah, start at Rs 6,000.

 
Product Pick: Anavila’s Nautical Saris
Wednesday, 02 April 2014 11:26



If we needed something to wear while visiting this Grandpa’s ship inside a  bottle,  Anavila’s nautical saris would be perfect.

Anavila Sindhu Misra made her debut at the Lakme India Fashion Week SS 2014 with these limited edition seaside series with waves and dots and scales that evoke images of mermaids and sailors, and beach towns where everyone has sand in their hair. You will gravitate towards the sari with the blue waves, but also drift towards the spotted one that seems like what a sailor’s vision would be after many days lost at sea.

On your way out, pick up one of the adorable and new Anavila’s Busa dolls, little stuffed dolls dressed up in fabrics as cooling as the nautical saris, both of which are available at Bungalow Eight, Colaba from today, April 2.

Go on, have a maritime.

Getting there: Anavila at Bungalow Eight, Grants Building, 17 Arthur Bunder Road, Colaba (near Radio Club),  view Anavila’s Facebook page here, saris start at Rs 12,000

 
Ananda Spa Launches Skin Care Range
Friday, 28 March 2014 12:29


What : Ananda Spa launches its line of products, buy online here, shipping across India, Rs 850 for 100 gms of  Aloe Gel & Distillate Hydrating Rose Face Mask.

Why: If you want la vie to be en rose, you might want to start with your face. We've ordered the hydrating rose mask from the line of beauty products recently launched by super luxe  Himalayan spa Ananda. The skin and hair care yummies apparently use the spa’s knowledge of ayurveda and aromatherapy to create the au natural range. 

When: You’re looking for a face-off.

 
Plating Room: Buy Crockery at The Table
Thursday, 27 March 2014 10:39

Plating Room: Buy Crockery at The Table

If your plates have started to chip, and not in a charming Victorian sort of way, here’s where you need to head this weekend.

The Table restaurant at Colaba is hosting a pop up from March 28-29 dedicated to tableware, and calling it La Vie En Rose. Through this weekend exhibit, they hope to bring together their favourite crockery on one well, Table, and show it off to you.

Come closer forks, and you’ll see super chic brands like Bandit Queen, and the more ubiquitous The Home Label. There’s also Coppre – we’d featured their lovely jug on bpb - Monkey Business, and the launch of Rachana, a graphic designer’s new line of Moroccan ceramic crockery.

We’re going to go get our hands on some assorted one off plates and paste them on the ceiling in our kitchen. Yet another view on food.

 

Getting there: March 28-29 from 10.30 am to 6.30 pm at The Table, ground floor, Kalapesi Trust Building, Apollo Bunder Marg, opposite Dhanraj Mahal, Colaba, call 22825000.





 
Graphic Songs: Photoshop This!
Tuesday, 25 March 2014 11:16


 

It could be anything, this wispy curve of black against a white background: a waning moon, a smile in the dark, a careless mark from a left-open pen. Turns out it’s a lone eyelash – Pranav Bhardwaj’s graphical interpretation of Pink Floyd’s Wish You Were Here

The backstory to this idea involved Pranav waiting for his train to arrive on the metro while being stuck with no battery in his ipod and one song on his phone. As all millenials would do, he played that song on loop till he reached work. An advertising professional by day and victim by now of serious musical ear-worm, he wondered what that song would look like as art.


Seeing Is Believing

Graphic Songs is a result of that song on loop, a project in which Pranav creates graphics based on song lyrics, using free hand drawings and pretty fonts. See, for instance, the figurehead of a man on an escalator while he leaves a briefcase behind which forms U2's lyrics; or Mumford & Sons rendered in Devnagri script; or an entire series called 'Breakfast songs' where key lyrics form a bread and omlette and a fanboy series where you can wear your music on your sleeve with Milton Glaser inspired artwork.


Having showcased at the Kala Ghoda arts festival in Bombay and as part of the interiors of Verve in Hauz Khas Village, Pranav's artwork has also been picked up by Cards4u- those free postcards at CCD outlets that you use as bookmarks. He has also started merchandising, shipping iPhone covers and high resolution prints all over the country according to your dimensional requirements. He’ll also do custom graphics for songs you’re obsessing about, for a price.


Or, you can just steal his idea and take a whack at it yourself. Pranav suggests these 5 classic songs for when you want to try your hand at turning music into visual art. Don't refrain.


  1. Black, Pearl Jam (Pranav's art interpretation here)
  2. Yellow, Coldplay (see art here)
  3. Comfortably Numb, Pink Floyd (see art here)
  4. With or Without You, U2 (see art here)
  5. Rockstar, Nickleback (see art here)


Getting There: Graphic Songs, see page here, contact Pranav at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Rs 600 for an iPhone 4s artwork cover.

 
When In Delhi: La Voguette
Wednesday, 19 March 2014 11:11



 There are some things the French do better than everyone else- baguettes and pretty dresses. Which is why we're excited about La Voguette opening its doors in Safdarjung Enclave, Delhi. Far removed from what has become a largely 'gota' obsessed market (Shahpur Jat), La Voguette begins a pretty story under a spotless white awning, two huge display windows where fake frescias tumble onto the solitary dress on display

Garima Lohia, owner and designer of La Voguette told us that her favourite section was the “Classics”. Inspired by Audrey Hepburn (isn't everything?) expect here full satin skirts on dresses, severe boyish cuts from the 1920s with colour blocked sleeves, silk blouses with stiff collars, a beautiful white blouse where ruffles tumble down both the centre and the sleeves, drop waist dresses with brooches placed at interesting angles. Avoid ruched cocktail dresses which made us cringe, as well as a particular leather and peplum dress- a combination so old we wondered if it belonged with the MJ jacket on sale. Buy instead a full dramatic copper toned gown made entirely of Korean lame, cut so cleanly and minus tacky embellishments that the material was both the hero and the story of the dress.

Getting There: La Voguette fashion store, B2/15, Safdarjung Enclave, Africa Avenue Road, view Facebook page here, Rs 23,500 for a off shoulder dress.

 
Masaba & Bodice Do Socks
Tuesday, 11 March 2014 12:16


If you’re going to have socks lying around your room, they may as well be beautiful and block printed and bought from a lovely designer.

One of our favourites – Ruchika Sachdeva of Bodice – is doing a fun line of socks in black and white featuring block prints, bold stripes and geometric shapes.

Also falling at your feet this season is Masaba Gupta, whose Juhu store is slated to get her latest collection of socks in the next two days. A peek at the designer’s Instagram account takes you straight to a sweet pair with a rose print in inverted colors.

Footsie with you just got prettier!

Getting there: Masaba -Unit No 8, New Sujata Co Operative Housing Society, Plot No 28, Opposite Satya Paul, Juhu Tara Road, Santacruz West, call 65298694, view the Facebook page here or log onto http://www.houseofmasaba.in/; Bodice - 2 Hauz Khas Village, 1st floor, New Delhi, call 9650-071122, visit http://bodice.co.in/, view the Facebook page here , Rs 500 to 1500, delivery in Mumbai(courier charges apply)

 
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