Be Wise this Winter

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Love the nip in the air? The smell of roasted corn, mouth-watering samosas, cups of garam chai, smooth hot chocolate?

Well we are not at our brightest in this season which makes you hit the snooze button more often than you think, and the morning runs suffer.

Make sure that your skin doesn’t. Use simple tricks to keep your glow on even in the driest of weathers.

 

Facial Care: Your face lights up someone’s world, so let the lights not dim in this drab weather.

  • Cleanse carefully, avoid washing your face too often and try using cold milk with cotton as one of the cleansing alternative.
  • Scrub as little as possible with milder scrubs
  • Do not forget to tone your skin as it tends to secrete more oil in winters to combat dryness.
  • Moisturize without blocking those pores. Add a bit of extra virgin olive oil to your daily moisturizer / night cream. Applying mustard oil on your face at night helps too (if you can bear the smell)
  • Masks made from kitchen ingredients like ripe mashed bananas, avocados, buttermilk or cream (malai) with a pinch of turmeric, egg yolk can be quite beneficial to combat dryness.
  • Pout pretty by scrubbing your lips with olive oil and fine salt to exfoliate. Make your you do not have already chapped lips as this will not only irritate the dry and bruised lips but may also result in redness or bleeding and chances of infection are high.
  • Apply petroleum jelly , lip balms or simply home-made ghee to keep the smile pain free.
  • Make up needs an additional base layer of moisturizer to avoid flakiness. Choose mineral or cream based make up depending on your skin type.

Skin Care: The rest of your beautiful body needs attention too. Don’t let the wind blow away your enthusiasm for a stricter regime during this season. Your skin need extra pampering in this season.

  • There are times when you are tempted to take long hot showers to combat the chill, but this is exactly what you need to avoid. To keep your skin supple tale 5 minutes lukewarm showers.
  • We feel less thirsty and crave for more teas and coffees and hot chocolates in this season. But remember anything with sugar and caffeine will dry your skin, so drink more water (eat sattu to boost thirstiness).
  • Eat lots of Citrus fruits, nuts, foods that are rich in protein, vitamin A, B1, and B2. Avoid fried food as much as you can. Give the sweet tooth a break and eat natural sweet dates for energy and to curb the craving. This will also help you keep your weight in check due to over eating.
  • Make note of winter rashes and try to prevent them by wearing breathable fabrics, moisturizing your skin, using natural, fragrance-free soaps, using broad-spectrum sunscreen that has an SPF of 30 or higher.
  • Avoid rough cracked feet by regularly exfoliating and moisturizing your feet.
  • Use hand creams regularly to avoid those pretty hands from becoming dry and flaky.
  • Moisturizing before bedtime is quite beneficial. Stay away from tight jewelry to avoid rashes.
  • Take care of your elbows because even with the body well moisturized the elbows tend to look white and dry. Moisturize them well.

Hair Care: Let that mane not get matted, avoid bad hair days / nights and stay stylish
Winter tends to make the hair drier and frizzier than normal.

  • Avoid washing hair too often however tempting it may be, use lukewarm water for hair wash. Do not for get to condition your hair for better results use leave in conditioners during winter.
  • Beware of the dangers of dandruff which is especially high in winters Don’t forget that those hot oil massages don’t just feel heavenly they nourish your hair from deep within too, go ahead indulge but don’t over indulge as leaving the oil in your hair for longer periods of time can lead to dandruff so can over stripping it by shampooing too often. So, try to maintain a balance.
  • Rinsing the hair with apple cider vinegar before shampoo helps too.

Style tips: Bring on those jackets and shawls and wear them with panache.

  • Just make sure you have pre-washed and stored those woolens well. Air them well to remove any storage or damp foul smells.
  • Treat your woolen garments well and instead of wearing one bulky sweater and then sweat if the temperature changes use multiple layers of clothes with the base layer closest to your body being soft and nonabrasive (to particularly avoid rashes).
  • Step up your style quotient by wearing your scarves and caps differently.
  • Sometimes step out with the scarf tied to your handbag belt or use it actually as a belt and later if required use it as a scarf.
  • Bring out your boots and funk them up with pieces of jewellery over drab black boots.
  • Don’t freeze to look stylish, you can wear long sleeve blouses, bandh galas, traditional jackets and clothes in thicker material like velvet, brocade, silk, jaquard.
  • Wear warm leggings under your sarees lehengas. Wear knit blouses.
  • Wear embroidered jackets over sarees.
  • Use designer shawls (especially ones with any kind of embroidery work on them) instead of dupattas.
  • If your head feels cold cover your head the traditional way or simply wear some silk hats with jeweler to raise those eyebrow as well as a few temperatures in the room.

Go ahead enjoy the winters in a wise, wacky way and yes don’t forget to smile, after all everyone needs the warmth of the sun and the smile.

 

 

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Not just a Saree

This time when I visited my mother-in-law in Chennai and was helping her arrange her cupboard I was surprised to see that she had very few sarees.

For someone who is an ardent lover of sarees she has a very good collection of some of the best silk sarees and it was a great surprise that she had now a great chunk of them removed from her collection.

Upon asking she told me that the borders of her silk sarees were torn, in some cases the saree itself was tearing. That is how silk is, if kept for a long time it generally starts tearing out on its own.

She seemed distressed that this should happen and was feeling bad that no one could use them in any way. I asked her how would she like it if she could still use them in some way and she replied “I would be delighted”

So here are a few ideas I shared with her. These are specific to silk sarees but if we take other sarees we can do a lot more.

  1. Cushion covers
  2. Curtains / Drapes
  3. Handbags / Potlis / Purses / Jholas
  4. Mattress Covers
  5. Furnishings / Upholstery
  6. Table covers, runners, placemats
  7. Dresses, pavadas (skirts), jackets, blouses (the list is endless here, you can turn it into any imaginable garment)
  8. Frame the Elaborate Pallu or the Borders
  9. Tapestries
  10. Reuse just the borders with other sarees
  11. Scarves / Dupattas / Stoles
  12. Saree Covers
  13. Gift Bags  / Dressed up Gift Boxes / Jewellery Boxes / Gift Envelopes
  14. Bed spreads
  15. Turn the border into a designer belt
  16. Lampshades
  17. Use two or more sarees to make a new patterned saree
  18. File Folder Covers / Diary Covers
  19. Patchwork quilts
  20. Trays / Teapot Covers
  21. Bookmarks (using the borders)

I haven’t posted any pictures here because I would have to take them from the net, I welcome my readers to share pictures if they have tried any of these.

My mother in law loved my ideas and I am about to embark on a creative  journey hope you people join me turn my ideas into reality.

 

Mmmmm Melorra

A connoisseur of the Amazon.com curated collection as well as a few Indian online jewllery websites I am not new to buying fine jewellery online.

While everyone starts with a bang many fizzle out on the journey and eventually turn into brick and mortar stores adding to their overheads which are collected from the consumers (I believe not many have given this a thought) and then the cost of jewellry goes up significantly. The same is usually explained as making charges or design costs. Making them akin to their traditional counterparts, however much they would love to deny this fact.

When I chanced upon Melorra.com I decided to give them a try. Not only were their prices much lower than any other brands in the market but their products too looked deliciously fresh.

The jewellery pieces are something I would love to flaunt on a daily basis, stylish, suave and totally chic. Also the use of semi precious gemstones is something that is trending in the Indian jewellery scenario currently, until now it was only the precious gemstones which ruled the jewellery designs making the jewllery both precious and heavy for daily wear. The whether-it-will-suit-me factor too played a major role as we Indians believe that certain gemstones (precious) are to be worn only after receiving a   prescription. the lesser semi precious gemstones however beautiful have no place in our fine jewellery.

Having said that, the quality of products is not the only key to success for most brands. The quality of people who work behind the scenes quietly making it happen for you is what matters too.

My encounter with Saroj Yaramilli over the telephone brought to mind an image of a woman who is dedicated to her business and takes great pride and responsibility of everything that goes on in her company.

For those of you who haven’t tried their jewellery I recommend you at least check out their website and you will be spoilt for choice from their vast catalogue comprising of various collections making them daringly different. Let’s see if you have the panache to carry a Melorra piece.

http://www.melorra.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

RecycleDiwali

The festival of lights is my favourite amongst all Indian festivals.

Not only does it get the home cleaned thoroughly but you can actually turn some of the junk you may have collected into interesting decorative pieces to be used around the home during the festival.

This is how I have recycled my junk.

                   Use old saucers and plates to make interesting Diya / tealight holders.

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Cover those old bangles with silk threads to match your festival dress and embellish.

                       Make use of the old CDs to make lovely hangings

                     Colour and end decorate old diyas

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Reuse all the old wax to make new candles, use old pots, glasses, bowls jars

                     Turn those old bottles into interesting lamps

I am on a roll making the best use of all my old stuff turning it into something new and usable this Diwali and I am not done yet.

 I hope you find it interesting enough to try some at home.

Tips

While untangling hair with a comb do not start from scalp and work downward try untangling the roots and work upwards it is easier and less painful

Spidey Woman

Spiderwoman, Spiderwoman,
Does whatever a spider can
Spins a web, any size,

Look Out!
Here comes the Spiderwoman.

 

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Leopard Print Sneakers

Love my Sneakers the leopard print is right in line with my love for animal prints. Waiting to team them up with a plain white cotton dress and pink hoops !!

Going great with my hair too !!

Shoes

 

Purple