Friday, December 28, 2012

London Postcard

You may remember that I was born in India. My generation was subject to a lot of colonial (British) influence in the literature we read: Enid Blyton, Agatha Christie, Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen and Oscar Wilde to name just a few. I spent my growing up years in the Persian Gulf region where, for the longest time, my only access to books was the local British Council. As we toured London on this trip, the history+literature Anglophile in me was thrilled to have discovered a new author to adore: Philippa Gregory. I read books from her Tudor series while touring the sights of London and have to recommend them to you as the perfect accompaniment to bring life to the castles and palaces and the very streets of the old city. History comes alive in her books! I have been sightseeing the entire day and racing back to the books in the evenings. Add a pot of tea, a scone or two and you are in heaven!

Are you familiar with her books?  I would love to hear from you, so do write in.

Image credits: 1. Taken by me somewhere in the Tower of London; 2 and 3.Via Amazon.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

London Travelogue: St. Ermin's Hotel

It was a spur of the moment decision to go on holiday though we knew we definitely needed a change. We thought we would pop over to London, a long-time favorite with it's heady mix of old and new. I was so busy at work and with papers and stuff that I gratefully left all the itinerary planning/booking to the husband.
We stayed at the St. Ermin's Hotel in London and I would greatly recommend it. It is located in Westminster and within walking distance of Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace and the Houses of Parliament (and the London Eye which my boys absolutely loved and would have ridden as many times as possible). The hotel has a rich history: it is built on the site of a 15th century chapel and was long used as a meeting place by the British secret intelligence services during WWII; Churchill himself spoke there. Recent renovations have added to the hotel's elegance and left its flair for drama and intrigue intact. 
The dramatic and gorgeous lobby with its beautiful plasterwork. We debated traveling during the busy  and cold season but all the bright decorations and holiday cheer more than made up for it and unlike summer, it wasn't too crowded. 

Visit the St. Ermin's Hotel here.

Image credits/copyright: All pictures taken by me. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! The bells in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican are ringing in the background as I type this. The boys and I are taking a much needed break and it has been wonderful to spend time without worrying about appointments and classes, deadlines, meetings and carpools. It has also been a time to remember that the only thing that matters is that we are together. I want to wish everyone of you a wonderful holiday season and hope that the New Year brings the world much-needed peace and joy.

Image credit: Taken by me.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Tea, anyone?

I have started looking for mugs and tea cups everywhere I go. I didn't know I had started collecting until I realized that they were the first items I went in search of in all the stores we have been visiting. I am not looking for matched sets or standard issue mugs or something one of a kind. I am only looking for a mug or a cup that I instantly like: it could be pretty or pretty different or a cup whose shape I like and can imagine curving my fingers around. I want to share with you a few that I am tempted by....

Miss Étoile mini cup and teapot available at Emil and Paula (Denmark). Love the gold polka dotted one too!
 Miss Étoile Coffee Mug "Dots with Tree Flower" Aqua Green available at Emil and Paula (Denmark). The next one is from PiP Studio and is available as a single or a matched set and is everything you would expect of a tea cup...

The last one is the Rosetta Stone mug from the British Museum and I really like it because back in middle school when I first heard about the Rosetta Stone, all I wanted to do was pack my bags and set off on an archaeologist's expedition and find treasures just like it.  Plus it looks pretty cool, doesn't it?

Image credits: 1, 2 and 3: Miss Etoile; 4, 5 and 6 PiP Studio; 7 British Museum.

Monsoon Accessorize

Everywhere in London I kept seeing these wonderful window displays at Accessorize and I had to share because they had the prettiest prints and colors and this boho chic vibe that I loved. I checked online and they are part of the Monsoon Accessorize brand and have clothes, accessories, gifts, homeware etc.

I loved this cushion because I have seen this rich floral pattern on enamel canisters and seeing it on the pillow is both unexpected and striking.
Visit the Monsoon Accessorize website here.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

London Times

There have been cloudy skies here but nothing else is grey. There are so many different colors and textures that you feel you are inside a kaleidoscope and you never now what pattern is coming up next....

All pictures taken by me. 

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Hello Monday

Hello Monday!  My boys and I have escaped on a vacation. We are in Europe and thoroughly enjoying the festive season. I am still jet lagged which is why I am up blogging in the middle of the night. How are  you doing? Wherever in the world you are, I hope you are getting into the holiday spirit and making the most of the last 2 weeks of 2012! 
Every year brings with it a multitude of experiences. This was the year I learnt to have more confidence in myself. But more importantly, 2012 was the year I learned that all you can do is take one day at a time. Do your best today. Nothing else is in your control. That sounds glib but I think for me this was the year that I started focusing lesser on the past and the future and more on the precious today
 I would love to know your thoughts on  2012. What did it mean to you?

Image credits: Taken by me. 

Miss Blackbirdy

Totally loving this black and white  Miss Blackbirdy mug from the Miss Blackbirdy collection at Liberty of London. I am blogging from the other side of the pond this week (yay, London). I can't wait to share it with you. 

Image credits/copyright: Liberty London. 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Fiber Kraft Bag Giveaway

The winner of the Fiber Kraft bag giveaway is ..

Rashmi said...
Love love LOVE that no animal is killed to aid human indulgence with their bags!

Image credits/copyright: Fibre Kraft

Zinio Giveaway Winners

This was my busiest week of the year and now that it is over, it is time to party! I have all the giveaway winners to announce so I am going to start with that. The 10 winners of the Zinio magazine subscription are ...

  1.Meera said...Am I the first to comment? Handyman magazine please!
2. Smi said...Clean Eating please! Thanks for the opportunity - coming out of lurkdom to post :)
3. Tanya Danielle Rasquinha said...Lonely Planet! Being a travel enthusiast, history and art lover and food junkie, it isn't much of a surprise that The Lonely Planet magazine is one of my favorites...I thoroughly enjoy going through each issue but what I absolutely love is their offbeat style of writing and is a visual treat! While the India guidebook is a bible for me and even though i curse the weight of the book I never travel without it.
4. notyet100 said...For me it's gonna be good housekeeping :) Love this giveaway,,..
5. Sia | Monsoon Spice said...I have never participated in giveaways, but this one has tempted me to try my luck :) Can I try my luck for Lonely Planet Traveller?!
6. Siri said...That's one lovely giveaway Priya. Perfect for the holidays. Can I try my luck for a subscription of Clean Eating. Thanks,Siri
7. Sunita said...Good housekeeping would be my choice.
8. Vaishali said...AD,Elle Decor are my favourite....Thanks for this Giveaway!!!
9. A Glossy Paged Addiction said...Would love to get a Rolling Stones subscription
10. Wow, great giveaway!I'd like a subscription to "Mollie Makes". I've read about this online mag in one of the DIY blogs and have never been able to lay my hands on it.. Now would be wonderful :)Thank you!! theprintlover at gmail dot com
If all of you could just email me with your updated choice of  magazine and email address, I will forward it to the folks at Zinio. (Please mention Zinio Giveaway in your subject line to make it easier for me.)
Image credits/copyright: Zinio

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


I am just popping to say hello and share a few pictures of the golden wintry sunshine we have been enjoying the last couple of days. It is beautiful and it enhances the beauty of everything it touches, so that the very air seems to glow...

I am in the middle of my LAST final paper and can't wait to get out and bask in the fleeting warmth. 
Hope you are doing well.

Image credits: All taken by me in the last two days. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Tia Pakhi

I found Tia Pakhi via Facebook and am in complete love with Kolkata-based, French designer Anaïs Basu's  contemporary interpretation of the kantha stitch. It is a great change from the kantha on floral fabrics that we have been seeing. At Tia Pakhi, the stitches reign supreme.

These two have stolen my heart! Visit Tia Pakhi here.

Image credits/copyright: Tia Pakhi

Saturday, December 8, 2012

A Postcard From My Life

Blogging is such an instinctive habit for me and one that is hard to break: especially on Saturday mornings when I have all the time in the world (it is the husband's turn to make tea and toast). So, got up early and while waiting for said tea and toast to arrive, spent time on Pinterest and ogled all the cookies and cakes that I would love to bake or the amazing crafts that I wish I had to the skill to create and then found this..

The words really resonated with me because I have been guilty of this lately and it's time to stop. I am going to be frank here (after all, it's just you, me and the worldwide web) and say that I think I am talking more about my problems almost as a form of defense: kind of "I have a lot on my plate, please don't add to it." It's time to break this habit before it takes root because that's just not who I am or want to be. I always love hearing from you, so do share your thoughts. 

Image credits/copyright: This print on Pinterest linked back to Kensie Kate and her Etsy shop full of lovely words.

Friday, December 7, 2012

India Circus

I am happy to share the newly opened India Circus with you. I heard from the folks at India Circus describing their beautiful and bright venture led by Devaki Khimji, Krsna Mehta and Hadi Curtay. They offer a range of lifestyle products from furniture to home decor to personal accessories. They are inspired by the Mughal era, roadside chai and other quintessentially Indian motifs and experiences. It is an exciting time in the Indian design world as designers reexamine traditional influences and come with striking new interpretations. Here are scenes from the first act...

Visit India Circus here. There is eventually going to be physical stores but you folks in India don't have to wait. Just head on over to their online store and you can start shopping right away. International shipping will be here soon.

Image credits/copyright: India Circus