January 31, 2018

Breaking Myths: How To Wear Oversized With Oversized

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In today's world, there are two kind of women - those who are comfortable in their own skin and wear whatever they feel like they can carry off, and those who go by the so-called standards of beauty & perfection as put forth by the money-making industries and swear by fashion rules dictated by the experts.

The fashion gurus, who give us fashion dos and don'ts to follow, have a long list specially for curvy women. According to that list, slim super-models can carry off almost everything that those above Size 10 cannot. 

Among those rules, there's one that says you can't wear two loose silhouettes together. Baggy + baggy = you looking like a sack of potatoes (according to industry experts). And if you are curvy or plus-size, then God help you! You can kiss your dreams of wearing a flared top with billowy pants goodbye before you can even try them on!

This year. I thought of starting a series - "Breaking Myths" - that aims at opening your eyes and telling you that there's no rule for dressing up. As long as you are comfortable in what you are wearing, and you like what you see in the mirror - the world is your runway! 
The first rule that I'm dissing in this series is the 'Can't wear oversized with oversized' rule.
I quite like the chic comfort of anti-fit clothes and one fine day, I thought of trying out a flared tunic with the widest-legged pants I own; and I realised that it certainly doesn't make me look like the proverbial sack of potatoes!

So, here I am, showing you that curvy women can rock the baggy on baggy trend too, as long as you dress smart! Let me know what you think!! :)


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[Flared kurta: Global Desi | Ikat palazzos: Tailored | Lotus Afghan necklace: Taselcrafts | Afghan earrings: some Instagram store | Coin head ring: Bibi's | Black brogues: Westside]


Photography by: Arjun of Arya Photography


So, now are you confident enough to try two loose silhouettes/styles together on yourself?
Let me know how it comes out in the comments below!

Here are a few things you might keep in mind while trying this pairing:
  • Try to put together complementing colors, as two very contrast or clashing colors might take away from the flow of the viewer's eyeline, thus making the two separates look forcedly-put-together.
  • If you go for print mixing (like me), try to keep one of the prints smaller than the other so that the eyes can move smoothly from one print to another without looking too much together.
  • Go for garments that individually fit you well. Even anti-fit clothes need to be your size for the basic look to be in harmony with your body. Something 2 sizes bigger than you when put together with another thing 3 sizes bigger than you can actually make you look like that sack!
  • Accessorize well. So that the focus is not entirely upon the fact that you are wearing more than one oversized item together. Also, the right accessories will elevate the look further and add some interest to the overall baggy silhouette.
  • Last, but not the least, have fun! Don't put anything together forcefully or just for the sake of trying out the trend. See if they naturally look good together and more importantly, on your body. Experiment to your heart's content and turn heads as you break those myths!

Hope you guys liked the post and some of the Indian street-style pictures we took (including the random passerby and locals - have always been wanting to do that!). I can't thank my photographer Arjun enough for making my wish of taking these kind of pictures come true! :D


Till next time peeps!


Love,
Anupriya
January 16, 2018

Travelogue: Thekkady/Periyar

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Those of you who know me well enough, or who follow my blog/Instagram/Facebook since some time now; must be aware about my incessant love for travel.
I traveled quite a bit last year, and even though I planned to document all my travelogues here, I could get the time and enthusiasm to only post about the awesome food places I discovered in Goa; my laziness having the best of me when I wanted to write about my experiences in Hampi or Kanyakumari! #facepalm

So, when I ended the year with a Christmas weekend getaway to the beautiful hill station in Thekkady, Kerala; I made a silent resolution to write about it on the blog. And here I am, trying to fulfill at least one resolution of 2018! ;)


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Thekkady is a pretty, laidback and not very well-known hill-station in God's Own Country, Kerala, and is actually popular for its national park which is better known as Periyar. The Periyar wildlife sanctuary also has a beautiful lake which is the main attraction of the hill station, after the forest. It's a great place to spend a weekend - specially an extended one - as 2-3 days is enough to enjoy whatever the destination has to offer.

Unfortunately, since we visited on the long weekend during Christmas, every place was super-crowded and we actually didn't feel the urge to stand in hour-long queues for the bus that takes tourists into the forest and lake area.
So, we majorly chilled at our homestay, took an early-morning jeer safari to the various viewpoints around the periphery of the forest and indulged in enjoying some of the cultural activities that have their roots in Kerala.

I thought of making it an easy and quick read for you guys by listing a few Dos and Don'ts that you can refer to, while planning a trip to Thekkady/Periyar.
It's not an exhaustive list and the opinions expressed are entirely my own, I don't claim professional expertise in these statements.But, I'm speaking from the experience of a traveler, and I'm sure other travelers out there might find it useful to have some real advice in hand before taking the trip! :)


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The meandering Periyar river

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Day 1 outfit - Tunic: Global Desi | Denim: Lifestyle | Backpack: c/o Limeroad | Shades: H&M | Slip-ons: Max

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Pepper plant in our hotel garden

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Day 1 - from where I stand

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A local handmade bamboo raft on the Periyar river

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Out walking on Day 1 

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Flower-spotting around Thekkady


DOs


  • Do check the weather before heading to Thekkady. Even though it's a hill station, it's not necessarily as cold as you would expect. We went during peak winter season (Christmas time), the average temperature during the day was 20-21°C which was pretty on the warmer side. Temperatures did drop a bit during the night and early in the morning, so light sweaters or jackets sufficed.
  • Do book your tickets for the bus to the lake or the forest safari or nature walk only from the Govt. offices around the town centre. The prices are fixed and the service is pretty efficient. If you book from private travel agents, then they might charge higher fees and you might not even be aware of it.
  • Do check out the various local shops selling spices and handmade chocolates. The spices are all cultivated in that area, and black pepper, cardamoms, cinnamon and some essential oils are popular picks you can take home. The handmade chocolates are super-yummy and come in a wide variety - from fruit & nut to white chocolates to mint-flavored ones.
  • Do indulge in a lazy afternoon of boating on the lake, if you have the time & inclination. The lake is quite picturesque and you can have a gorgeous view of the surrounding forests and hills from while you enjoy some time on the boat.
  • The nature walk conducted inside the forest is said to be pretty interesting (though we didn't go for it because of too much crowd that weekend), but the chance of spotting animals will depend solely on your luck. Elephants, bisons and deer are still said to be spotted most of the time.
  • Please do take out an evening or two to witness some cultural performances that are famous  in the region. There are cultural academies that house shows of dance form Kathakali and martial arts form Kalaripayattu - tickets are for around 200-250/- bucks per head and are available with most travel agents or even at your hotel/resort/homestay. Sometimes, if you are booking a nature walk or jeep safari trip with an agent, they might offer you tickets for these cultural programs for as low as 150/-.
  • If you are opting for the jeep safari that takes you around the periphery of the jungle and makes pit-stops at strategic viewpoints, make sure you set off early morning - no later than 7-7.30 am. That time, there are not too many people or vehicles around, so chances are that you might spot an animal or two somewhere along the route. Also, the early morning chill and nip in the air adds to the atmosphere created by the picturesque views from the hilltops. 
  • Do visit hotel Thekkady Cafe if you are looking for an authentic Kerala meal. This place is not very fancy, but the ambience is typical, local style and the food is quite tasty at reasonable prices. You'll be assured when you see the rush and crowd at the place during lunch or dinner. 

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Picturesque view from one of the viewpoints

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The hills making a perfect backdrop

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Reflection on the Periyar river

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Day 2 morning outfit - Sweater: Allen Solly | Scarf: Kolkata | Beanie: Forever 21 

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Just need a place to pose!

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Day 2 afternoon outfit - Trench coat: Forever 21 | Floral printed tee: United Colors of Benetton

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Exploring the various photo ops all over Hotel Ambadi
  
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50 shades of green




DON'Ts
  • After my experience, I would advise you to avoid planning this trip during any big holiday time. That is because the crowd makes the whole experience less enjoyable. Also, you might want to avoid the super-long queues at ticket counters or vehicle boarding points.
  • Don't rely only on your hotel to arrange for jeep safaris or other sightseeing activities. Take a short walk around and pop in at the various travel agents' offices dotting the town to compare prices. Then go for the one who's giving the best rates - it will any day be lesser than what your hotel will charge.
  • Don't carry too many warm clothes, even if you are visiting in winter. Check the weather beforehand (Google to the rescue) and carry some light sweaters or jackets only for the night-time or early morning outings.
  • Don't miss out on taking lazy strolls and long walks through the hilly roads....stop at souvenir shops or quaint hillside cafes, smell the wild flowers, breathe in the mountain air. That's when you get the real essence of a place.
  • Even if you are a lover of silver jewellery or Tibetan artefacts, try to steer clear of the many Tibetan shops you'll come across in the town. I have no prejudice against them, but as per my knowledge, the products they sell are not native or local, they are taken from the North-Eastern part of the country to be sold in the Southern state, so of course, the prices are higher than they should be. There is also no guarantee of the authenticity of the products, so there's a high chance that you'll not get your money's worth. So, don't be tempted by the appealing window displays of alluring silver jewellery; and go for the spice shops or chocolate stores instead.


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Ring of fire through which the Kalaripayattu performers jumped with effortless ease

Kalaripayattu performance - mesmerizing


Kalaripayattu - one of the oldest martial arts forms in the world


That, more or less, sums up my experience at this Kerala hill town. I am sad about the fact that we couldn't attempt a journey into the forest, thanks to the Christmas crowd, but that just might give me another excuse to visit Thekkady again!

You'll get numerous hotel/resort/homestay options in Tripadvisor or MakeMyTrip, but I would personally like to recommend Hotel Ambadi, which is a beautiful property with quaint villas, greenery and a restaurant that serves tasty food. This is not a sponsored post, so please take this as my genuine recommendation, based on experience. Hotel Ambadi boasts both a picturesque courtyard as well as art-y interiors that are done up in wood and give off rustic & earthy vibes.


You can shoot me any questions or queries in the comments if you plan a trip to Thekkady ever and I'll try to answer them to the best of my abilities. 
So, put this place on that 2018 bucket list and make sure you tick it off some time this year! Let me know how you liked it!!


Love,
Anupriya
January 07, 2018

Being The Retro Cat {Style Prism x Woodgeek}

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A BIG hello to you guys as I write this first post of 2018!
Hope the new year has started off with a bang for you all.....and you've dived right in to tackle all the new challenges this year is/will/might throw at you.

I don't know about you all, but I've given up on making resolutions - more than half of which always remain unfulfilled anyways. 
Instead, this year, I have made a list of 'Projects' that I'd like to work on. Be it my plan to create more art - both on paper as well as digitally - or my intention of visiting at least one new country this year. I aim to look at each of these tasks as projects which I need to do this year, and attack them with planning & strategy in place. So, hopefully, as the year progresses, I'll be able to tick things off that list.

Among my projects for 2018, is my blog for which I want to create more exciting, interesting and enriching content. I aim to be more regular with my blog posts, use my blog planner efficiently, and work with promising brands that spin their own fashion story in a world full of copy-cat trends and fast-fashion styles. 

So, I thought of starting the year with a collaboration with one such brand that is an exciting startup from the City of Joy. Woodgeek was born out of the passion for exploring the scope of working with wood beyond its traditional uses. They are a team of wonderful, passionate and creative individuals who have "turned their obsession with timber into creating cool stuff out of wood." So, they amaze you with their stylish bamboo-frame sunglasses & glasses, sassy wooden phone cases, cool bamboo notebooks, carved wooden posters, super-fun wooden bow-ties and many more exciting products that you would have never thought can be made out of wood!
What's more, Woodgeek lets you customize any of the products with your own name, quote, message or image that are skillfully etched on the wooden surface to create personalized beauties! Thus, their products are not only great for using yourself, but make for amazingly perfect (and uncommon) gifts too!! They also take bulk corporate orders and ship worldwide!

While browsing through their appealing collection of wooden sunglasses - available in various shapes, colors and texture - I, being the retro-lover that I am, fell in love with the stylish cateye shades that they have cheekily named 'The Librarian'. I chose the variant in charcoal bamboo with dark brown lens and got my blog name custom-etched on one of the arms of the glasses! They also offer you the option of engraving any custom design on the wooden box in which the sunglasses are packaged, and you'll soon see what I got written on my box! ;)

The packaging is beautiful, well-done and very easy to carry around; and the product is, of course, perfect to the T. It's lightweight, super-trendy, and looks great, to say the least. 

Of course, styling a pair of cateye glasses was a no-brainer for me - if you know me well enough, you'd know I'd choose to style it in a retro-chic way. I added a touch of French je ne sais quoi to the 60s look and topped it off with my new bamboo-frame cateye sunnies!


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[Wooden cateye sunglasses: c/o Woodgeek store | Red beret: local market, Darjeeling | Blue khadi coat: Red Sister Blue | Shift dress: Zara | Black stockings: Commercial street, Bangalore | Red knee-high socks: Sarojini Nargar, Delhi | Black brogues: Westside]

Photography by: Arjun of Arya Photography


Aren't you just drooling over these gorgeous wooden beauties?
Did you see what all I got custom-engraved on the glasses & box???

Now, you can get your own customized wooden products too! Just head over to Woodgeek store and check out their awesome array of wooden wonders! These make for such great gifts too for your near and dear ones - I'm sure your husband will love a personalized pair of shades, or your best friend will treasure a bamboo notebook with an etched image of you two on the cover!

And if you are wondering if the end product will come out as you want it, then rest assured. The team will send you a digital mock-up of your customized design and will go ahead with the final engraving only once you give the thumbs up! Service at its best, if you ask me!! :)

So, what do you think of my retro look and my classy cateye shades?
Do let me know in the comments below.

And to see how my 2018 is going, don't forget to follow me on Instagram and Facebook!


Love,
Anupriya


Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post and the sunglasses have been sent to me for review, but all views expressed are my own. 

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