‘Rescue Mission Series’: How I Transformed an Old Saree into a ‘Designer Saree’ for £15

The ‘Rescue Mission Series’ is one of my favourite series on the blog and one that is underpinned by a concept I firmly believe in and promote constantly; reimagine, restyle and reuse. This is a series where I update old Indian clothes in my wardrobe and give them a new lease on life, in keeping with current trends.

The inspiration for this ‘rescue mission’ started when I saw a Bollywood celebrity on the internet wearing a beautiful floral printed saree edged with matching feathers on the pallu. I liked the concept of the design and how the florals and feathers worked together in unison to create a chic style statement. When I dissected the makeup of the saree, I realized it was a simple combination of a pretty floral saree and a feather trimming on the pallu. Subsequently, I decided to try creating this with a floral saree already in my wardrobe.

This chiffon saree with a gorgeous blue floral pattern belongs to my mother and is at least 35 years old.  It was gifted to her by an aunt for the birth of her nephew (I love the Indian tradition of gifting clothes when a child is born – it cements a happy memory in your head forever). I decided that I would look for a feather trim in that virtual shop on the internet that probably sells everything one can ever dream of – Amazon.  As expected, the ‘shop of all things ever’ did not disappoint; I found this ostrich feather fringe trim (fake of course) for £7.69 per meter in a dazzling amount of shades. Not knowing which shade would work – I ordered two different shades of blue and decided I would combine them to get a better overall colour balance.  The total price for my trim was £15.38 (OK I fibbed a little – the total was a bit more than £15).

The one-meter trim was not enough to go end-to-end on the pallu so one side got a bit more of each blue and the middle has both colours combined – you can hardly tell.  I have to say that I loved the result and the vivid blues gave the saree an instant update and provided me with an ‘on-trend feather saree’ that was very close to the one I saw the celebrity wearing.  I took it on holiday recently to show my mother and I think she was really pleased with my ‘rescue mission’ on her lovely chiffon saree.  I even altered her blouse as I did not have one that would have work with the finished product.

The beautiful blue set I am wearing is by Heritage  Jewellery by Ridhi and it could not have matched the saree more perfectly.  The jewellery worked wonders in helping me achieve the sophisticated look I was after.

I hope you enjoyed my endeavour to create a ‘designer look’ with an old chiffon saree and some new fake feather fringe trimming. As always, thank you for reading my blog and supporting my creativity. If you enjoy my fashion and interior posts then please follow Isha’s Verdict on Instagram @ishasverdict.  Have a great week ahead!

Accessories:

Jewellery – Heritage Jewellery by Ridhi (tel:07734 806481), @heritagejewellerybyridhi 

Feather Border –  Amazon (Ostrich Feather Trimming fringe for Millinery in Midnight Blue and Peacock Blue, Sold by: Amaharryzon

Forever Sarees: Are We Becoming ‘One Trick Pony’ Sari Wearers?

Hello everyone!  This weekend I felt the first hint of a cold undertone in the weather and realized that our summer is slowly coming to an end.  I know we had a few very hot days in London but they were nowhere near enough for me to get my fix of wearing one of my favourite kind of sarees – summer sarees in beautifully light fabrics that are unique in their weaving and cultural significance.

I have always loved Indian summer sarees and I have a hard time passing on ethnic cotton sarees as the colours are so beautiful and the variety is literally endless.  I am really going to show my age here but sometimes I wonder if these beautiful cotton sarees are popular with the younger generation (especially outside India) or is their exposure to them so limited that they are not even in their line of vision?  Often, when we go somewhere, we see a lot of ladies wearing lovely ‘Bollywood inspired’ trendy sarees, which of course are lovely in their own right. However, sometimes it does strike me that everyone is wearing a copy of a similar theme and the sarees are beautiful versions of the same style statement.  When this happens, I do miss seeing a variety in the styles of sarees on display and it is always lovely to see someone wearing a traditional weave or an ultra-modern drape to brighten up the visual landscape of sarees.

I am definitely a ‘vacation shopper’ and I can’t imagine coming back from holiday without some clothing or interiors purchase that is special to the land or country I am visiting.  I guess this is just another form of a shopping addiction and one I admit to wholeheartedly. I bought this beautiful Kasavu saree on a holiday in Kochi a few years ago.  It was excruciating making a decision on the border colour but any combination with cream and black just makes me weak in the knees. I bought my mother a cream with gold/peach border one and I am hoping to ‘borrow’ it in the near future.

I have paired it with one of my favourite black sari blouses (that I have worn with many a saree) and this stunning jewellery set from Heritage Jewellery by Ridhi.  I love the idea of this magnificent jewellery with a traditional cotton handloom saree.  This is a statement necklace that packs a punch and I thoroughly enjoyed wearing the two together for this lookbook.

I hope to fit in a few more summer sarees in the coming month before it is time to pack them away for next year.  I hope you enjoyed this post and as always, thank you for reading Isha’s Verdict. I would love to see pictures of your favourite summer sarees as well! Have a great week ahead.

Please follow me on Instagram @ishasverdict

Clothes and Accessories:

All jewellery – Heritage Jewellery by Ridhi (tel:07734 806481), @heritagejewellerybyridhi 

Destination Wedding Guide Part 2: What to Wear and Why?

Continuing my focus on destination weddings, we arrive at the big question.  What do I wear for what event at the wedding?  Now, is a good time to note that we all live in a multicultural society and may attend a variety of weddings through the course of the year.  For the sake of this post, I will concentrate on clothes that one may consider wearing to a culturally Indian wedding.

The Saree: The six-yard drape is a natural winner when it comes to wedding attendance attire. Sarees look beautiful and the choice of style and fabric is endless.  However, there can be a small problem with taking one to a destination wedding. The tying of a normal saree involves pleating the front and this is not everyone’s cup of tea. Many people are discouraged from considering a sari because they have no idea who is going to pleat it away from home. This is a genuine problem and I have seen many a tear shed and time wasted trying to tie a saree that won’t work at the opportune time. My mother has a tried and tested solution for this problem that truly works. I will be posting a live video of her method in my next post.

The other relatively new solution is the ready-made or ready-pleated saree. These modern sarees have pleats that are already in place like a stitched skirt. All you have to do is slip them on, zipper up the side, put the palla across your body and you are ready to go. Once on, you can move around freely as there is no danger of pulling out the pleats by mistake as the saree is made to size and securely in place. This avatar of the saree is truly well suited to destination weddings; the wearing time is minimal and the output is maximum. If you are particularly apprehensive about wearing a saree – this is a great option for you.

Sharara: A sharara is basically a flared wide-legged trouser (in various styles) that can be worn with a short or long top and an optional dupatta.  It is a truly comfortable garment and one that I think would be truly flattering on all sizes and shapes. This versatile garment works for a multitude of functions – right from the wedding to the reception.  I highly recommend you incorporate a sharara in your destination wardrobe for a comfortable ensemble that packs a mighty fashion punch.

Suit: It is hard to go wrong with a salwar kameez, anarkali or churidar suit.  They work well and are uber comfortable.  Furthermore, they will keep you warm as they allow for a variety of warm undergarments to be worn with ease.

Lehenga: A lehenga with a short or long top is a tried and tested outfit that will work at most times. It is also an ideal piece to mix and match with other tops and dupattas in your wardrobe.

Fusion wear: Modern Indian destination weddings present a unique opportunity to wear clothes that may not work in traditional Indian weddings.  For example, if you are attending a wedding at a beach resort, a beautiful kaftan with statement jewellery would be a unique choice that would offer both comfort and style. These outfits are a great opportunity to make an individual style statement and I will be lookbooking a favourite kaftan dress in a later post.

Shoes: I do believe that shoes make the outfit or are at least as important as the rest of the outfit. When you are destination wedding bound – shoes take on even more importance due to their possibly bulky nature. In this case, it becomes imperative to pack shoes that you know you will wear with an outfit (hopefully more) and not ones that may possibly work.  My sincere advice; pack shoes that are comfortable. The whole idea is to go and have fun – it’s not worth letting foot pain ruin your enjoyment.  Equally importantly, please pack shoes that compliment your outfit – it is truly impossible to put forth your best style statement if it is apparent that your shoes were an afterthought.

Jewellery:  Destination weddings are a great opportunity to wear some of your statement jewellery. Do carry your jewellery that compliments your outfits. If you are travelling to a foreign country and want to take real jewellery; do look into local laws of taking gold etc. into the country.  Many countries may let you take it in but will question you if they discover you are travelling out of the country with precious metals and stones.  Also, keep in mind that if you travel with real jewellery, the oweness of keeping it safe falls on your shoulders. Make sure you have a secure provision to store it.

Given the above, the following are some tips that I think are important when it comes to considering what you may want to wear to a destination wedding:

  1. Decide on outfits that complement the particular function that you have chosen them for.  You may be desperate to wear a new outfit but wearing a slinky cocktail saree to the actual wedding ceremony may look out-of-place and leave you feeling self-conscious.
  2. Do not shy away from ethnic weaves and other traditional Indian outfits.  Modern sarees and gowns look great but so does a South Indian saree with flowers in your hair.  Mixing up your sartorial choices is a great way to put forth your fashion acumen and versatility.
  3. If you have no idea what others may be wearing – try to find out.  Individuality is great, but dressing in a style that is totally out of whack with what others are wearing may leave you feeling awkward or embarrassed.
  4. Do your research on certain controversial colours before you pack.  For eg., certain families may not appreciate you wearing black to the main wedding function.
  5. If the evenings are going to get considerably colder (such as in southern California where temperatures can fall significantly once the sun sets) go prepared with a shawl or other warm garments that match or coordinate with your outfit.  It’s no point ruining your look with a puffer jacket on top of your saree to evade the cold.

Last but not least, I suggest that when you are deciding what to wear (and before you go shopping), go shopping in your closet and in the closets of those close to you such as your mother, aunts and friends. We all own beautiful clothes that have often not been worn more than a few times.  These clothes deserve another outing and choosing them will prevent you from spending more on new clothes.  As importantly, this exercise will spurn you on to mix and match in your closet and in turn create new outfits out of old ones.  I am a firm believer in this practice and I will show you my recent haul of sarees from my mother’s closet in a future post.

I hope you have found this post useful in some way. In my next post, I will share a video of my mother’s pre-pleating saree’ hack as well as my packing list for a destination wedding. Have a great weekend and thank you for reading Isha’s Verdict.

I want to thank Kumkum for collaborating on this post and providing this sharara that could work perfectly as a destination wedding outfit.

Contact details:
+44 7983 863852
+44 7448030545
Facebook Page: Kumkum (click here)

 

My Parenting Eureka Moment: and a Classic Wedding Saree

Hello everyone. I do not often talk about my children on this blog. As I have a teenager and a not teenager (but thinks he is one), I am conscious that while they are my children, they have their own semi-adult lives now and it may not be fair for me to be continually discussing them.  Hence, I generally refrain from it. Today, however, I am going to make an exception for the greater good.

A few days ago, I read an anonymous post by a young mother who shared that she was struggling with her two young children and allocating time for them and their activities, leaving her wondering if the time spent on hobbies/activities was worth it. Her post touched a cord in my heart as I think most adults have found themselves in a similar stretched situation.  Juggling various responsibilities in a finite amount of time is an exhausting task, even for the most organized of us (a club of which, unfortunately, I am not a member). I find that one of the biggest challenges of parenthood is dividing my time and attention to meet all the children’s needs and those of the adults that form part of my family and friends.

Often, when we are in a tricky situation it is normal to wonder if others face similar hurdles or if we are somehow specially blessed with unique trials and tribulations that seem to traumatize no one else. In times of parental anxiety, I have always found solace and a new perspective in reading about the experiences of others. In this spirit of sharing, I offer the following personal experience to the time stretched mothers and fathers who may be wondering what the results of time-consuming hobbies that small children pursue can be.

Our older son has had an aeroplane obsession for almost a decade now.  I believe that the fledgeling roots of his passion have their origin in him watching the planes fly overhead in his grandparents garden as a young child. In the beginning, he would observe planes everywhere, and he then started requesting models of airplanes. Frankly, this proved to be quite convenient as no in-depth thought was required to buy him a present – we just thought planes and came up with a smashing present every time. With time, his interest deepened and soon he would happily use his allocated computer time looking up planes and plane related facts and figures.

As his knowledge grew, so did his requirements. Soon, the obsession started getting quite expensive as now not just any plane model would do. His lovely little head only wanted die-cast models (not plastic) that had to be to 1:400 scale (my husband once made the mistake of buying a 1:600 model from Zurich airport that resulted in a big sulk). Then, one day he declared that he would like to go to the area around the airport and look at planes. So on a beautiful cold morning, my husband joined the ‘plane spotters’ brigade and took our son to look at planes. This is when the hobby took a drastic new turn.  Our son loved going to view planes and was up to ‘plane-spot’ at any time.

What happened next you ask? Dear son decided to take a picture with a phone camera of the planes he saw.  This monumental decision had a tremendous impact on his plane hobby and free time.  He wanted to take plane pictures all the time. Now, my husband happens to have a keen interest in photography and uses a great camera and some powerful lenses.  Soon enough, our offspring discovered that when daddy took a picture it had much more depth and form than his photographs.  His growing brain quickly deduced that better equipment often meant a better photograph. So next, he wanted to borrow his father’s camera and lenses. At this point, we objected and said no as he did not have the necessary know-how to use this sophisticated equipment.

Praise the Lord; it is truly amazing what children can teach themselves when they are really after something. Son went on the internet and with the wealth of knowledge available (youtube being a huge contributor) started to teach himself photography. Not only did he teach himself the basics – but he also taught himself lightroom and photoshop (but alas, he is still unable to fully figure out the intricate workings of our dishwasher).

We finally decided to take a big chance and let him loose with better photographic equipment.  He now photographs planes any chance he gets. We cannot book any trip without his input in terms of which airline, which plane and which airport we shall utilise.  Indirect flights are preferential as they offer more photography opportunities – sometimes I put my foot down when the proposition involves more than two changes. All our trips to any airport (foreign or domestic) require leaving early to build in time for photography. When we visit a new country, photography rules are researched well ahead of time and ‘plane spotting and photography’  is done at all times. This often means waking up at ungodly hours in the morning and then ubering or walking to locations that he has researched well ahead of time. We then have to stand for hours, often in rain and cold, to capture the perfect shot of a rare plane that is on its first or last journey.

Sometimes, my patience cracks and I threaten no ‘plane-spotting’ on a vacation. My husband has proved to have far more patience than me and has woken up on many a freezing morning to accompany him on a shoot.  As he is still too young to be left alone in these situations- the whole family is now subjected to his plane pursuits. Both sets of grandparents in London and Los Angeles will take the time to take him plane-spotting for hours on end at various airports. Uncles and aunts will arrange tours of regional airports and wait in cars for hours so that he can indulge his passion.

The point of the above story is simply the following.  All our children will have interests that will span a gamut of activities.  Some interests will seem most useful, and others will seem quite useless.  Often, these interests will require a big chunk of a precious commodity – our time and their time. This requirement can cause frustration and often it is tempting to just say no. However, my personal experience has taught me this. When we as parents help cultivate a hobby, we may be providing the biggest gift of all. We are helping to develop a passion that will feed their creativity for a lifetime. We are also enabling them to learn another valuable life lesson; nothing in life is free. Excelling at any skill requires enormous amounts of time and dedication. In most cases, it will require hundreds of hours of practice and often giving up precious free time in order to spend developing that skill.  We are proceeding with the plan that if we can help him understand this basic life fact and excel at a skill, then we have partly succeded in our parenting duties.

What has been the result of this time investment? His knowledge about commercial aviation is second to none and he has become a rather good photographer to boot. He has a substantial Instagram following, an aviation blog and he has managed to get his pictures published on jetPhoto. I often joke with him that I could get him a job if child labour weren’t against the law.

Below are three of my favourite photographs that the 15-year-old in question has taken in the last few years:

That said, let’s get back to fashion. in this lookbook, I am wearing a silk saree that was part of the wedding clothes gifted to me by my mother-in-law.  I loved this saree the moment I set eyes on it – yet it has never been worn in the past 17 plus years that I have owned it. Perhaps the right event never arose or like many a woman before me – I kept saving it for the perfect occasion (which in my head was a winter wedding day event). I absolutely adore the rather unusual pale pink and green colour combination and the two-toned gold and silver floral motifs that grace the saree.  I think classic never goes out of style and this silk saree hits all the classical high notes.  I have paired it with a beautiful kundan stone set from Toraan design that I have also lookbooked in a previous blog (Handloom Sarees: What Makes a Great Indian Outfit – Money or Styling?).

I hope you enjoyed this lookbook as much as I enjoyed wearing this saree.  Have a great rest of the week and thank you for visiting Isha’s Verdict.

January Sales: Some of My Sale Purchases and What to Buy Now in the Sales

Happy start of the week everyone. The sales have been on since last year, but I believe now is when the seasonal sales get really interesting.  The stores have now further discounted sale items and this is the right time to strike!  In my opinion, this week is a great time to get some genuine bargains, especially if you are looking for a relatively expensive item such as a new leather jacket or a fancy new coat. The downside is that your size may have sold out, however, it is worth checking other stores that may carry the brand or even the original brand website several times as sizes do come back on.

Substantial buys such as leather jackets are staples and less susceptible to change in the swift winds of fashion. A leather jacket you may buy in the sale today is likely to be severely discounted but will still be bang on trend for the rest of the year and beyond. The store may release it again with silver buttons instead of gold in the new year, but when you see it next month for full price you are going to mighty pleased with your gold-buttoned jacket!

In this lookbook, I have showcased two of my recent favourite sale purchases from COS. My love for sweater dresses is eternal and I am happy to add this pale grey A-lined number to my collection.  The band across the back is my favourite part of the dress and its neutral front makes it perfect for accessorizing with a variety of pieces.  I have teamed it with a pretty scarf my mother got me from India (bless our lovely mothers who always come back with presents), my high heel navy boots and my favourite tan coat. This dress can literally be worn with anything and its generous shape is a Godsend in terms of comfort and wearability.

The second sale purchase is a cream longline sweater vest that I have been looking at for a long time in the store. I don’t know if you do this as well, but I often find myself eying something up in a shop – knowing I love it and will wear it often – but then not buying it  – but still looking at it every time I go into that shop or look online.  It’s like a buyers paralysis in terms of executing the purchase but a stalkers determination in viewing it regardless! Back to my vest; I have teamed it with jeans, brown boots and my teddy coat for a cosy and warm outfit I have already worn a couple of times over.

Of course, I have been checking out my favourite websites for sale items (my friend calls me the ‘What’s on sale Guru’) but unfortunately, as the saying goes, ‘Even a bargain costs money’ and I can’t have it all. I can, however, point you in the direction of some of my top items on sale in case you in the market for something similar.  Below are five of my high street favourites on sale:

Ted Baker Shearling Biker Jacket – stunning jacket that will be a staple
Karen Millen – A great work coat that will go with everything – extra 20% on top of the sale price
Reiss – gorgeous wear-anywhere dress
Zara – Lovely going out dress in the summer, and in the winter with a polo neck underneath
Karen Millen – A party staple that will serve you well! There is an extra 20% on the sale price

 

 

 

 

 

Monki coat – it’s fun and has a detachable collar in a funky faux fur
Reiss – A short coat in the supposed colour of the upcoming season

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clothes and accessories:

Dress – COS (this colour is sold out online but you may find in the store)

Coat – Massimo Dutti

Boots –

Bag – All Saints

Sweater Vest – COS 

Boots – Frye

Teddy Coat – Warehouse

Jersey Long sleeve Animal Print Top – H&M

 

 

My Diwali Outfit: and Recent Travels to Mumbai

As many of you may know from my ‘About’ section and previous posts – our family spent five years in Mumbai a few years ago.  We moved for my husband’s work and when the assignment was over – it was time to come back to London (approximately about three years ago). This October half term gone was our first time back to aamchi Mumbai since we re-embraced the bright lights of the capital.  I was actually nervous about what I would feel when I stepped on Indian terra firma; would I be ecstatic, melancholic or somewhere in between?

I needn’t have worried  – the moment I stepped onto that paisley red carpet at Chhatrapati Shivaji airport – I could feel my heart soaring and a happy Bollywood tune playing in my head (“Saree ke fall sa…” if you must know). It is natural that countries and places we have lived will always have a special place in our heart and minds. Mumbai was that ‘hostess with the mostest’ that took us in with open arms and showered us with love and warmth throughout our stay there.  Going back only confirmed what I already knew – Mumbai is an amazing city which will always be like a second home to me. Also, I have a fabulous set of friends who made this a truly memorable vacation for my whole family.

Now my visit to Mumbai coincided with the run-up to Diwali. Diwali celebrations done right and buying a new outfit go hand in hand – in fact, I think that’s an official festival rule. Also, I take pride in pointing out that during this trip to India, I was spectacularly restrained on the shopping front. I decided that I would purchase only one outfit this trip that would make my womanly heart go pitter patter every time I looked at it. This was the gorgeous ensemble I purchased and I had the opportunity to wear it to the ‘Red Bus’ event while in Mumbai.

I love everything about this outfit  – the flowing palazzos, the beaded fringed blouse and the pièce de résistance  – the flowing silk cape with patches of floral embroidery.  The outfit is eye-catching, fluidly graceful and most importantly, comfortable. I have paired it with my trusted pale pink clutch, silver sandals and a lovely pair of chandelier earrings that I purchased in Santa Cruz market.

A very happy Diwali to you and yours – have a fabulous time celebrating.  I would love to hear about your plans to celebrate this year and of course about Diwali outfits that you may have purchased.  Thank you for reading and a very happy Diwali from Isha’s Verdict.

Clothes and accessories:

Outfit – XON (Pali Market)

Earrings – Silver Queen (Santa Cruz Market)

Clutch – Gucci

 

Clothes and accessories:

Outfit – XON (Pali Market)

Earrings – Silver Queen (Santa Cruz Market)

Clutch – Gucci

 

Traditional Wear: My Five Rules for Effective ‘Mixing and Matching’

I have long advocated the idea of ‘mix and match’ on this blog – especially with Indian attire that never seems to get the wear it deserves.  Now I have friends who are happy to admit in the spirit of fashion honesty, that while mix and match is a great sounding idea to espouse – it is actually much harder to pull off in a desirable manner. I absolutely agree with this sentiment and my reply to them is always along the following lines.

‘Mix and match’ is an established fashion principle.  However, like most well-founded principles, there are some rules that help execute the look more effectively:

  1. Aim for an overall cohesive look – Regardless of what I am mixing and matching, I try and aim for an overall coordinated effect.  This helps tie the various elements of the outfit together to deliver a ‘sharp’ fashion look that highlights your fashion prowess.
  2. Complimentary or clashing colours – Either way, the combination of colours in your outfit should be pleasing to your eye.  If you look in the mirror and feel that these colours have nothing in common, trust your gut instinct and rework the outfit.
  3. Use different textures – Often a mixture of textures works wonders.  For example, silk and lace and linen and cotton are some of my favorite mix and match combinations.
  4. Single colour in varying shades – Creating a fashion look with a small variation in colour tone is a fabulously simple yet sophisticated look in my opinion. Different shades of grey and different shades of pink are great options to try.
  5. Combine patterns and prints – combining geometric patterns with floral prints is a key mix and match option.  I have never gone wrong with combing a striped blouse with a floral bottom – a nice black and white striped blouse is a staple in my wardrobe to be worn with a variety of combinations throughout the year.

The outfit in this lookbook is a true ‘mix and match’ ensemble that I loved wearing.  I bought this lehenga two years ago and I have featured it on this blog previously during Diwali time – Diwali Celebrations: In A Yellow And Pink Kurta And Cream and Gold Skirt. The green blouse is a recent delivery that a fabulous friend got me from Mumbai when I mentioned to her I was in need of one – it pays to know your ready-made Indian blouse size! The pièce de résistance of this look is the gorgeous jewellery set by Toraan deign. This set is everything I love about Indian jewellery – intricate in design and regal in look.  I love this entire look from head to toe as it caters to the passionate love I have for ethnic Indian outfits.  I have added some flowers in my hair to finish off a great summery ethnic ‘mix and matct’ look that would work for a vareity of occasions.

I hope you enjoy this lookbook and I would love to hear your feedback.  Have a great week ahead and thank you so much for visiting my blog.

Clothes and accessories:

Indian Jewellery Set – Toraan design £150 (please email them about this set)

Lehenga – The Silk Tree

Dupatta – The Silk Tree

Blouse – Friend – Santa Cruz Market Mumbai

 

‘Toraan’ Jewellery: Two Ways with a Saree and a Pleated Blouse

What’s not to love about Indian-inspired jewellery! From delicate filigree work to rich Kundan work – ethnic jewels are splendid and I am constantly amazed at the beautiful designs I come across. I am always keen to acquire Indian jewellery but it can be hard to find pieces that effectively balance quality, design, and craftsmanship with a price point that is not going to cripple your bank account.

It almost seems miraculous when you come across a company offering gorgeous designs at amazing prices – proving that ‘exclusivity of design shouldn’t come coupled with unaffordability’. This describes the essence of ‘Toraan’ – a jewellery and art store founded by the lovely Purti Bhatia. Toraan offers beautiful jewellery ranging from bridal sets to everyday wear that is not only gorgeous to look at but the quality of the pieces makes it a pleasure to add them to your jewellery box.

I love my Indian jewellery pieces and every time I wear them with Asian clothes, I am reminded that I must try harder to pair them with Western outfits.  I am a great fan of ethnic jewels paired with non-ethnic clothes and I think this combination creates a unique fashion statement that delivers the unexpected.  I have spoken to many of my friends about this and they all concur that we need to work harder on the above. This is why I decided to try something a bit different in this blog post. I have paired this beautiful green Kundan set from Toraan with a saree as well as with a pleated blouse and leather jacket.  I wanted this lookbook to deliver the message that Indian jewellery is exceedingly versatile and looks great with so many outfits.

I hope you enjoy this post and would love to hear how your thoughts on fusion pairings of jewellery and clothes. With summer approaching – I am planning to incorporate more of Toraan’s beautiful jewellery with my dresses so watch this space for more of her beautiful pieces.  You can view her range of jewellery and art at www.Toraan.com

As always, have a great day and thank you for reading my blog.

 

Clothes and Accessories:

All Jewellery by Toraan

www.toraan.com

Jewellery Set As Worn – Green Three Flower Kundan Choker with Earrings (£68 – also available in red) 

Pleated White Dress – Zara

Black Leather Jacket – Massimo Dutti (similar)

 

 

Double Dressed: Summer Midi Dress With a Dress Jacket

I have written about the powerful ability of clothes to evoke memories before. As I advance in years, there are more memories to be evoked; good or bad, nothing takes you back to your childhood faster than your own recollections when you see something that makes an instant connection with the memory bank in your brain.  This red and white dress instantly reminded me of tea towels, bedspreads and sacks that I regularly saw in my early years in India.

The hand-loom sack-like material makes for a lovely summer dress that has an ethnic boho vibe to it. It’s hard to go wrong with red and white and given its relaxed shape, I thought it would make a great addition to my summer wardrobe.  I have paired it with another khaki dress, masquerading as a summer coat, that can easily be worn as a dress once buttoned up.  I love the layering effect of the dress coat and its light construction is ideal for slightly chilly summer evenings.  I have finished off the look with tan shoes and a tan cross body purse that goes with everything. On its next outing, I plan to wear my khaki coat-dress with white sneakers and a colourful bag.

I hope you enjoy this look book and thank you for visiting Isha’s Verdict.  Please recommend your friends and family have a look at my blog if you think it is something they would enjoy!

Clothes and Accessories:

Dress – Debenhams (on sale)

Coat Dress – Zara

Handbag – Rebecca Minkoff

Sunglasses – Dior

 

Beautiful Jewellery and Vibrant Sarees: In Collaboration With Soignné (Part 2)

Hello everyone! Last week, I featured a beautiful saree and blouse combination, with stunning jewellery, from Soignné elegant range of clothes and accessories.  This week, I am proud to lookbook yet another gorgeous combination from Niru Keshwala’s offerings.

There are saree blouses and then there are saree blouses that stop you dead in your tracks! I absolutely adore this saree blouse with slim cut outs at the shoulders and contrasting sleeves.  It is stunning in design, vivid in colour and the organic handwoven Dhaka cotton fabric is what my ethnic fabric dreams are made of.  The versatility of this blouse is plain to see – it would go beautifully with so many different coloured sarees and would also work fabulously as a crop top in a boho inspired look.

I am wearing this saree with Soignné classic chandbali earrings and their beautifully intricate oversized kada.  This magnificent creation puts the statement in statement cuff and is made of oversized pearls, cubiczircon and kundan work that come together to make a stunning piece of jewellery in an antique gold finish.

All clothes and jewellery are from Soignné  – you can shop the range at:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SoignnebyNiruKeshwala/

Instagram: @soignne

Email: soignne@yahoo.com

Have a fabulous rest of the week and thank you so much for visiting my blog.  A big thank you to Soignné for collaborating on this post.