Saturday, October 29, 2016

Diwali: A tribute to Terracotta | The Red Clay

Hello Hello Hello.
6 months of being away from Rang Decor!
Anyway, I thought I'd drop by and share few frames from how we have decorated our humble abode for the arrival of Goddess Lakshmi.
This year's decoration is a tribute to the Terracotta, the red clay from which the 'Diya' or the earth oil lamps are made in India.
It is also dedicated to the artisans who work with the earth. Examples of which you can see in our previous home in Bangalore.

I have tried to incorporate terracotta in all aspects of decorating.

The Kum-Kum (Vermilion) holder as the prayer room gets ready for Lakshmi Pooja this evening.

She is omnipresent! Isn't she? Floated some button Chrysanthemums in terracotta urlis.

Long time Rang Decor readers might remember the antique Chettinad door in our Bangalore home flanked by traditional terracotta niche for placing oil lamps. Well, we had got extras made then which came all the way to Minnesota. 

The space got instantly transformed as I placed oil lamps in them.

Zoomed out view of our mantelpiece.

Ah! Floating fresh flowers in earthen Urlis is a classic.

 This wonderful terracotta oil lamp was a Diwali gift from my Mother-in-law few years back.

Goddess Lakshmi match box is a DIY project :-)

We have a corner in our home where we honour the deity whom we are celebrating. So for Diwali its a Tanjore painting of the Ashtalakshmi: 8 Lakshmis with Lord Venkateshwara in the centre.

The hanging brass lamps are from Ahmedabad, India.

The blue adds a wonderful contrast to the Terracotta. So I played around with table setting ideas with the colour combination. 

Wishing all readers of Rang Decor a very Happy Diwali filled with lots of love, happiness & health!
Have a great day with family & friends! ( ...and remember the loved ones not with us today)

( Images by Arch and are copyrighted)

Monday, April 11, 2016

Sultan Cave Suites | Goreme, Cappadocia | Turkey

Our trip to Turkey last November started with Cappadocia. Having seen the magical hot air balloons glide silently over a very unique landscape, put Cappadocia on our Turkey travel 'to-do' list.

We took a flight from Istanbul to Kayseri which is in the Central Anatolia region of Turkey. Within an hours drive from Kayseri is Sultan Cave Suites in Goreme, Cappadocia.

Having reached our destination in the night, we woke up to the wonderment of this nature's beauty!
The landscape of Cappadocia is made of volcanic rock formations which look like accordion patterns.

The the volcanic rock formations are very aptly called Fairy Chimneys. These structures over time have become dwellings by carving into the soft rocks. Today many such caves have become boutique hotels.

Sultan Cave Suites is one such cave hotel where one can experience the fairy chimneys nestled amongst volcanic mountains and valleys.

The gorgeous sunny terrace with breathtaking views.

Ismir the hotel dog soaking up the fall sunlight on a gorgeous kilim!

The cozy reception area where we sipped many cups of warm Turkish Apple Tea and enjoyed the view.

Just loved the rustic stone built structures and courtyard around the caves.

As night fell the surrounding area took on a surreal imagery.

The moonlight evening was savoured!

Entrance to our cave rooms...

Combination of wrought iron and stone...

We woke up early to go experience the highlight of our Cappadocia trip!

At dawn we watched the hot air balloons slowly fire up and rise up in the sky...

The magical scenes will ever be etched on my mind.

We sat there watching the balloons glide over to the other side of the valley and behind them the beautiful eastern Sun rise.

It really filled up my heart!

Cappadocia is a must visit site if you visit Turkey.

Do check out Sultan Cave Suites on Facebook.

( Images by Arch and are copyrighted)

Sunday, February 07, 2016

Tea Coup | Ayurvedic Teaologist | Fehreen Ali

Tea, Rumi & Ayurveda.
The three words close to my heart.
Connected me to Fehreen Ali.

Fehreen likes to call herself an Ayurvedic Teaologist. She is a Tea Formulater with a formal education in Ayurvedic Medicine.

'Ayurvedic ritual and plant medicine have been a part of my life since the beginning. Born and raised in Fiji, currently living in Brisbane, Australia. I was immersed in the world of Ayurveda through food, herbs, ancestral rituals and storytelling.

I grew up in a tea drinking culture where women would blend their own spices for masala chai and men would gather around a Tanoa (ceremonial wooden bowl) to drink Kava. Both Tea and Kava were the glue that bonded people and communities together.'
~ Fehreen Ali

Fehreen's love for tea along with her formal education in Ayurveda in 2002 planted the seed for Ayurveda Inspired teas. In 2010 when she started her Ayurveda practice, she was looking at offering Ayurvedic teas for her clients for ailments and general wellbeing and noticed that there was a real gap in the Australian market. The natural thing to do was to create and blend her own Ayurvedic inspired healing teas.
Tea Coup was thus born.
Sweet Bohemia ~ Bliss

According to Fehreen, 'Ayurvedic tea is a component of the ancient Ayurvedic holistic healthcare practice, which was developed in India more than 4,500 years ago. It was created to help individuals pursue optimal health and balance in life.
Ayurvedic teas are specially designed blends that combine exotic herbs, plants, fruits and spices from around the globe.
Teas are a great way to extract medicinal value from a herb as the seeping process activates the oil which is what holds the medicinal values.'
Alkimiya Ayurvedic Purifying Blend

The blending of the teas happen in sync with the Lunar rhythms.

Fehreen believes that the cycles of the moon play a crucial part in her tea blending process. She follows the lunar calendar as she believes that this is nature’s way. 
On the crescent of the new moon, she formulates new blends and continues until the full moon night when she does the majority of her tea blending. She feels the energy during this time is very feminine as well as creative.

Tea Coup's Six Signature Blends

Fehreen's Sacred Space ~ Tea Coup hut.

Her love for Rumi is very evident in her visuals that she shares in her Instagram feed.

When I wrote to Fehreen Ali that I wanted to feature her and Tea Coup on Rang Decor as part of 'A Cup of Chai…' series a new feature related to tea, she wanted me to experience her tea blends before writing about them.

I tried out couple of her teas and loved the delicate floral, citrus notes in Sweet Bohemia and it definitely makes for a refreshing cup. 

Here is my photographic tribute to her passion for tea, ayurveda and Rumi in some of my pottery creations.

Rumi Blend

Miss Hibiscus Blend
Hope Rang Decor readers liked this new series related to tea:-)

Off to try out the Miss Hibiscus ~ C Fusion
This blend is packed with vitamin C and helps in strengthening the immune system. Loads of antioxidants to aid in balancing moods.

Very inviting especially on this lazy Sunday morning:-)

You can connect with Ayurvedic Teaologist on Instagram, Facebook or their Website

( Images by Fehreen Ali and Arch and are copyrighted)