Inspiration India

When Slumdog Millionaire released, most of my Indian friends were quite mortified by the portrayal of India in the movie. I never really got down to watching the film, besides bits and pieces when it came on television. And I am certain if I were to watch the whole movie I really would not have been offended. What I have been noticing though is the major influence India has been making in the design and fashion circuit since the movie. I mean earlier Indian inspiration came only in form of prints and a few graphic symbols like Laxmi or Ganesh on T-shirts and Bedcovers, which came in the category of street fashion or hippie fashion, or there would be a one-off India inspired piece. Whereas now, there are full collections by renowned fashion and design houses which are being inspired by India. And I don’t blame them, in terms of design India has got a whole lot of inspiration, from natural beauty to the fabrics and colours and most importantly its vast history and tradition.

The Louis Vuitton India Enchanted Story

It could well be said that this is because luxury markets have taken a huge hit in Europe and America, while in India it has seen a steady growth. Whatever the reason I am quite kicked by the fact that India is inspiring so many people and collections. After all, I don’t know how many more time I can answer “So do you travel be elephants?” or be known only for snake charmers. The answer to the question by the way is, no we don’t travel by elephants most of us have cars and snake charmers are just one of the market side appeals of the country, no one has pet snakes at home. Here are a few Luxury brands which have showcased Indian inspiration in the recent past.

INDIA INSPIRED FASHION

Chanel Metiers d’Arts 2012 Pre-Fall collection titled “Paris-Bombay”

This year Chanel’s Karl Lagerfeld delivered his India inspired collection at the Chanel Metiers d’Arts 2012 Pre-Fall collection titled “Paris-Bombay”. The collection features intricate embroideries, raw silk and other extravagant materials characterise an exquisite combination of delicate Indian handcrafts and Parisian fashion. Models both men and women were adorned with accessories including head-jewellery and turbans. In Lagerfeld’s words “it is the Paris version of the idea of India”. The colours were from Fuchsia, to ivory-white to gold and silver.
Louis Vuitton made headlines in the past when they came out with their collection of bags inspired by India and even changed the window display of their stores by displaying an artwork of Hindu goddess ‘Laxmi’ during Diwali festival. LVMH even launched a collection ‘L’ame du Voyage’ which is inspired by travels in India and the range consists of handbags, travel bags, jewelry and accessories.
Hermes another iconic fashion brand, had recently launched its limited edition Sarees which are an extension of the famous ‘Hermes’ scarf. A silhouette which dates back more than 1,000 years has now been accepted as a ‘must-have’ drape in the fashion world. These Sari’s begin at $6,000 and since most of Hermes clients are Indian millionaires it is considered quite a steal. They also did a whole India inspired collection of scarves with bright colours and motifs like the elephant.

INDIA INSPIRED PERFUMES

Un Jardin Apres La Mousson, Hermes

In terms of beauty product and scents India has a vast history. There are a variety of materials which originate in India and have inspired designers over the years, like Sandalwood, Jasmine, Cardamom and many more. But over the years more and more Luxury brands and indulging in bringing out India inspired collections.
One of the best and oldest perfumes of great success was Shalimar by Guerlain produced in 1925. Shalimar was inspired by the love of an Indian Emperor for his beloved wife. The love story inspired Jacques Guerlain to create this masterpiece named after the Gardens Of Shalimar where the two Indians found love. This perfume is suitably exotic, blending fragrant floral with sensual notes of patchouli and amber to create a powerful love potion. Shalimar’s recognizable scent has captivated women and their admirers for almost a century now. Jaipur by Boucheron, is another perfume that invites you to discover mystic and enchanted Orient. The bottle is shaped as a bracelet which is considered a lucky charm in Rajasthan. This rich floral bouquet with sweet fruity notes was created in 1994. Jean-Claude Ellena, Hermès’ in-house perfumer, drew inspiration from Kerala– for Un Jardin Apres La Mousson (“Garden After Monsoon”) This perfume captures the quiet yet natural beauty of Kerala with its blue-green bottle and the smell reminds you of the romance of monsoons.

INDIA INSPIRED MAKE-UP

‘Bombay Express’,Chanel

In terms of Make-up too alot of brands have come up with India inspired collections. They have been inspired by the earthy tones, metallic sheen as well as the bright hues of India all of which goes perfectly well with the Indian skin. Chanel’s ‘Bombay Express’, designed by Creative Director Peter Philips are meant conjure up “a specific vision of India”, from “Surreal princesses from an idealised empire” to “the scent of jasmine” and “lavishness of the Maharajas”. Clarins a Paris-base cosmetic company that designed one of their fall collections based on Indian colors called Enchanted. Holi, a religious spring festival celebrated by Hindus, inspires the colors in this collection. The Enchanted line consists of an eye shadow palette with a very Indian inspired packaging design. The collection features lips glosses named Pink Jaipur and Nude Delhi as well as a kajal eyeliner that Indian women have used as one of their makeup staples for centuries.Guerlain has come up with a mineral base collection called Terracotta which is supposed to be inspired by the earthy richness found it India. It has lip glosses by the name of Beige Bengali, Rogue Sultan and Pondicherry. It also has a Kajal mineral coal in Black Fakir.

INDIA INSPIRED ACCESSORIES

Christian Louboutin “India Inspired”

Christian Louboutin launched his gorgeous India inspired shoe collection earlier in 2012. This collection draws inspiration from India and Bollywood in particular. Earlier this year, he also opened up his first outlet in India. His love for India and its culture dates back to the days of 70s and 80s. He appreciates the diverse crafts and splendour associated with vibrant Indian culture. In his own words – “If India was a shoe; it would have to be a bright coloured sandal with some gold”. The collection has received a great welcome since its launch, its available in multiple colours, and have embellishments in studs and sequins reflecting the grandeur of Indian craftsmanship.
Judith Leiber has a definite affinity towards India. Besides the India inspired collection of Ganesh, Elephant and Camel they also has Indian fashion designer Suneet Varma design bags for them. Though I am not certain how I feel about carrying a Ganesh in my hand,as pretty as it looks I am certain I will offend some religious person (besides the fact that I doubt I can own the $6,000 piece)

INDIA INSPIRED FURNITURE

Charpoy collection Nipa Doshi and Jonathan Levien for Moroso

Furniture has its own place in India, so where we usually associate Indian furniture with heavy oriental or classic pieces, in the recent past designers have infused Indian traditional pieces with European styles and created a fusion collection. For instance Eames did a limited edition Indian inspired chair. In fact even Indian furniture designers like Alex Davis have come to their own whereby they have been taking inspiration from India and creating furniture collections.
After their presentation of the Charpoy collection Nipa Doshi and Jonathan Levien continue their partnership with Moroso in the shape of two new products, My Beautiful Backside and Princess. Like Charpoy, these display a fusion of two worlds, India and Europe.My Beautiful Backside has a lacquered wood base frame with large cushions fixed to it to form the backrest. The cushions are covered with Indian textiles and decorated with very large, extremely beautiful buttons. Fabrics include silk and cotton and a Kvadrat wool cloth designed by Giulio Ridolfo which is woven like an Indian silk, the warp and weft are of two different colours.The Princess version, so-called for the Princess and the Pea fairytale, has five mattresses one of top of the other with variously coloured edges

INDIA INSPIRED FABRICS AND WALLPAPER

Amrapali by Tricia Guild for Designer Guild

Indian prints have been great inspiration for fabrics all over the world. This has been going on for years in forms of fabrics and wallpapers. For instance Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen’s Jaisamand wallpaper for Graham and Brown. He named his line in honor of one of India’s most spectacular natural landscapes and used Rajasthani-inspired colorways. Or Morris & Co. which has had its own Indian design section for a long time. But there are also designers like British design Tricia Guild whose main inspiration for design has been India. She has lived in India and wandered all over taking inspiration and creating designs inspired by India and for India. Her latest collection Amarapali for instance is a beautiful collection with bright flowers.

INDIA INSPIRED FOOD

The Bollywood Collection, Laduree

The French who are undoubtedly the best pastry chefs also took inspiration from India to create the Laduree Bollywood collection. The collection does not extend to flavour as much as the colour and shape. Sold in a box of four, the collection kind of looks like a box of sweets from India: Indian pink being grenadine strawberry, citrus green is mint chocolate, canary yellow is citrus lemon and ivory-white are coconut raspberry balls. The collection is also a slight departure from the usual macaroon recipe. Each ball consists of a biscuit garnished with cream and coated in a very light meringue.

Style Picks: Trunks

by Isha Marwaha

It has been noticed that trunks are used as furniture pieces in interiors. People are considering them to be the latest fashion in town for the interior industry. The Trunks are seen to be the latest trend all around the world and now it is in our country.They vary in different fusion of vintage materials like leather, metal and canvas accessories. Here are some pictures featuring TRUNKS from the stores around here..

Nappa Dori, www.stylecity.in

NAPPA DORI

Louis Vuitton, www.stylecity.in

LOUIS VUITTON

Apartment 9, www.stylecity.in

APARTMENT 9

Three Sixty Degrees, www.stylecity.in

THREE SIXTY DEGREES LIFESTYLE STORE

Portside cafe, www.stylecity.in

PORTSIDE CAFE

October Style Picks

1. Ambassador mini, At Ease
2. Around the world with Johnnie Walker Blue Label
3. Czarina Quarter Plate, Address Home
4. Timeless Dual Action Mask Picture Jar and Box, Recover
5. Jewels By Annu Chadha
6. Candle Stand, Kinerhs
7. Wedding Collection, Louis Vuitton
8. Vase, Moonriver
9. Candle Holder, Nachtmann
10.Vintage trunks, AA Living

Luxe and Stylish: Chateau de Varennes, France

Chateau de Varennes is conveniently located in South Burgundy close to the famous vineyards of Beaune. The current buildings date back to the 18th century and the interior grounds boast a very impressive size of 2,000 sqm for the main building with an additional 600 sqm for the Orangery which is used as a function hall for private or professional events. When the current owners Aymeric and Sonia de Truchis de Varennes inherited the property in 2009, it was too big to keep as a holiday house for the smaller modern families. At that time, they were both working in London and their American friends working in the high-end travel industry encouraged them to refurbish the property entirely and create an ultra-luxury chateau resort. The 2-year ambitious renovation project was led by Fabrice Bejjani, a French-Lebanese interior designer known for refurbishing luxury villas in Paris and on the Mediterranean coast. Fabrice’s signature is the attention to details and the ability to mix beautifully the historic features of the Chateau with contemporary accessories. In 2012, just after its opening, the Chateau de Varennes was already named by CNN among the top ten best wedding holiday resorts worldwide. So here is an exquisite option for your that dream wedding you have dreamt about all your life.

Grand salon (first floor)

021_grand salon pink lounge, Chateau de Varennes

This sumptuous reception room is dating back to the building of the property in the 18th century. Its original decor and furnishings were carefully maintained throughout the time. Lavish silk curtains and a white marble chimney are matching perfectly with the splendid Versailles parquet floor. Romantic paintings of the four seasons are displayed on each corner of the room, showing the then dominant influence of Marie-Antoinette’s taste for pastoral scenes. Silver tea set engraved with the family coat of arms : family collection, Tea cups : Hermes, Vase : Zoeppritz

Marie-Antoinette suite (first floor)

003_bedroom Marie-Antoinette_lounge corner,Marie-Antoinette suite (first floor) 001_bedroom Marie-Antoinette,Marie-Antoinette suite (first floor)

The Marie-Antoinette suite is adorned with a classical wallpaper featuring a very original silver pattern standing out of a soft purple background. This makes it look like a modern’s queen boudoir. The impressive high ceilings are balanced with more cosy fabrics used for the bed furnishings (velvet and tweed). The classic Louis XVI medallion chairs were upholstered with matching purple velvet and the silk curtains were also custom made. All the fabrics and soft furnishings used in this suite were sourced at Osborne & Little in London. Carpet : Zoeppirtz, Cashmere shawl : Jab, Cushions : apartment 9 India, Hand bag : Louis Vuitton, Notebook : Christian Lacroix, Tea cups : Fleux, Tray : Habitat, Vase : Coming B, Wall lamps : Stéphane Davidts, Wallpaper : Osborne & Little, Water jug : Fleux

Music lounge (first floor)

015_music lounge,Chateau de Varennes 016_music lounge, Chateau de Varennes

The music lounge is where all the guests gather for tea time or for drinks. Adorned with family portraites and painted in a classic pale grey similar to the iconic grey shade used in Dior stores, it has not changed much since the 18th century. The precious Italian ivory-inlaid ebony cabinet and the Louis XV chairs are precious family treasures as well as the authentic Murano glass chandelier which was brought back from Venice in the early 19th century. The contemporary accessories are bringing more joyful vibes to the otherwise very classical lounge. Clock : Joy de Rohan Chabot, Fur bedspread : Zoeppritz, Lamp 1 (left side of the sofa) Jeremy Cole, Lamp 2 (right) : Corep, Paint : La Seigneurie, Sofa and table : custom-made, Stool : Exsud, Turquoise jars : Fleux.

Princess suite (first floor)

005_Princess suite, Chateau de Varennes 006_Princess suite, Chateau de Varennes

008_Princess suite, Chateau de Varennes009_bathroom Princess suite, Chateau de Varennes

Offering a lot of space and painted in elegant neutral colors like vanilla cream and off- white, the spectacular Princess suite is often used as a honeymoon suite. The wooden stand tailor-mannequin and the velvet sofa dating back to the 18th century are both vintage treasures from the family collection. The ceiling medallions are displaying lion heads which are edged with a delicate gold line. This gold line is also repeated in the en- suite bathroom. Bed head board, curtains : Dedar fabrics and soft furnishings, Cushions and bed cover : Jab, Hand bag : Cartier, Hat box : Country Casa, Paint : La Seigneurie, Shawl : Zoeppritz, Sofa : family collection, Vases : SMJ, Wall lamps : Stéphane Davidts. The Princess bathroom was custom made with marbles from Italy. The strip made with gold coated mosaic tiles is a subtle reference to the gold edge of the master room’s ceilings. Bath towel : Pretty linge, Gold coated mosaic tiles : Bisazza, Marble basin : custom made by Cristal marble, Tap : Hansgrohe, Toiletries : Eden Park et Exvoto, Wall lamps : Stéphane Davidts.

Kitchen (ground floor)

029_kitchen, Chateau de Varennes

The kitchen was custom made by a local carpenter. Custom designed built-in include storage cabinets and a recessed display wall for storing small kitchen equipment. The vintage farm table and the modern pink chairs are conveying a joyful and relaxed atmosphere in contrast with the more neutral shades of the kitchen cabinets. With the attached pantry, the kitchen spans 100 square meters and the professional equipment allow the meal preparation for the 30 resident guests. Another large professional kitchen is available in the Orangery for big catered events. Cake stand : Habitat, Chairs : Habitat, Lamps : Hind Rabii, Paint : Farrow and Ball, Resident pastry chef : Muriel Arcos, Roller shades : Linum, Tea cups : Fleux, Tray : Habitat

Main dining room (ground floor)

024_dining room, Chateau de Varennes028_dining room side table,Chateau de Varennes

While the elegant lounges on the first floor are very similar to reception rooms of a Parisian “hotel particulier”, the main dining room reminds one of an English gentleman’s library. This was actually the purpose of this room until the previous dining room (which was located in the current Princess suite) was moved from the first floor to this more convenient location on the ground floor. The wood panels were custom built by a local carpenter with oak trees from the property woods. The huge table extends to seat up to 25 guests. Another smaller dining room is available next to the main dining room and is used for children’s meals. Black candleholders : Conran Shop, Chicken wire cloche (cloche en fil de fer grillagé) :Un esprit en plus Porcelain plates and silverware with coat of arms : family collection, Tablecloth : tailor made, White candleholders : Bougies la Française, White low flower vase (coupe blanche) : Coming B

Jeanne suite (second floor)

060_bedroom 25_Jeanne suite, Chateau de Varennes

The Jeanne suite is one of the 4 rooms on the second floor which were painted in 16 different shades of grey (4 different shades of grey were used for each room : walls, doors, door frames, ceiling, ). In order to contrast with this neutral background, a fifth color is used in each en-suite marble bathroom as well as for the soft furnishings (curtains, beddings and seat covers). All these bedrooms are equipped with ultra king size beds allowing them to be transformed into twins if necessary. The Jeanne suite is the only room to feature built-in shelves which replaced a former fireplace. The simplicity of the Louis XVI sofa is matching well with the authentic wood flooring, the exposed beams and the sober wall lamps. Bed head board, bed spread, upholstered sofa, cushions, curtains : tailor made with Dedar fabrics and soft furnishings. Hand bag : Thursday Friday, Lamps : Stéphane Davidts, Yellow bed cover : Zoeppritz

Louise suite (second floor)

031_bedroom 27_Louise suite

The designer Fabrice Bejjani used an autumnal colour palette to soften the bright natural light due to the double exposure of the Louise suite. With East-facing exposure, the master room is providing a superb sunrise view on the private Chapel of the chateau. The. An open walk in wardrobe was built behind the headboard and the study room is overlooking the pool and French gardens. Except for the Marie-Antoinette suite which is decorated with Osborne and Little fabrics, all the other bedrooms are appointed with exceptionally high quality fabrics and soft furnishings provided by Dedar, the famous Italian brand who just created a joint venture with Hermes. Bed head board, bed spread, upholstered chair, cushions, curtains : tailor made with Dedar fabrics and soft furnishings. Fur bed cover : Zoeppritz, Orange boxes : Sarah Lavoine, Wall lamps : Stéphane Davidts

Chapel outdoor by David Brenot chapel indoor_by DB Chapel

Chapel, Chateau de Varennes

After the destruction of the village church during the French Revolution, the owners of the Chateau de Varennes decided to rebuild a new church on their premises. Due to various hiccups including the first World War, the Chapel was only completed in 1920 but its timeless architecture took inspiration from the romanesque style of the Middle Ages. The capacity is 80 guests and it is frequently used for many celebrations. It is quite unique that a private chapel can host Catholic weddings and christenings.

Chateau de Varennes cocktail area LD Outdoors

Aerial view Chateau de Varennes

With 100 hectares of private land, the property is offering substantial space for big functions and for practicing various sports including clay-pigeon shooting. A big cocktail area is set in front of the main chateau with fields and woods on one side and French gardens on the other side.

Pool area

Pool area + weddings at Chateau de Varennes

The heated pool is quite large (16m) and is equipped with luxury outdoor furniture by the famous brand Kettal. The fully renovated pool house is featuring a kitchenette, a shower, a changing room and toilets.

www.chateaudevarennes.fr
Images- Alexandra Meurant

Dior Cupcake delight

Dessert is not just about flavour anymore, it is also about who designs it as we saw from the example of Jimmy Choo Pastries a few weeks ago. A popular choice has been cupcakes, Chanel and Louis Vuitton did it and now it is Dior’s turn to collaborate with Harrods and come up with limited edition cupcakes. Each cupcake is designed with an iconic symbol including the Lady Dior Handbag and the Muguet Dress. These treats are available in limited quantities of four at USD 30 and they ship internationally for a small fee. For more details go onto Harrods online store. I think they are the perfect gift, exclusive and not too expensive. So if anyone is looking to gift me something….

image

Style Picks

1.Place de la Concorde ring, Louis Vuitton
2.Chaise Lounge, Chizzle
3.Fakhtai Jhumka, Klove
4.Knotted Rug, Hands
5.Tie, Hermes men
6.Metal Tea Light Holder, Iris Aroma Boutique
7.Festive Jewellery, Shaheen Abbas and Shabana Shaikh
8.Tatami daybed with roof, Dedon at Pallate
9.Valeriy Kuznetsov and Katerina Kuznetsova of Decor Kuznetsov
10.Voltaire Desk by Paco Camús

Style Picks

Hello I am back from my vacation, sorry for not posting as much as I thought I would but I am so exhausted I feel now is when I really need a vacation. Anyway more will come up slowly but starting with this weeks Style Picks. Enjoy and be Stylish 🙂

1. Chandelier, D’mart
2. Diorific Vernis, Dior
3. Eden Platine, Bernadaud at The Right Address.
4. Envelope Centre Table Trends 2012, Pallate
5. FAZ outdoor furniture, designed by Ramón Esteve for VONDOM
6. Ring, Gucci
7. Peacock Coaster in Red, Wishbox studio
8. Upholstery, Shades of India
9. Duchess Lavender glasses Vera Wang Wedgwood
10. World Tour, Vintage Hotel labels from the collection of Gaston-Louis Vuitton’, by Francisca Mattéoli.