Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Bringing Home Craft By World Market

You'll have been familiarized with the novel concept of "Craft By World Market" in my earlier post. I'm always on the look out for rare and one-of-a kind products, so as to make my home or my wardrobe as unique as me. With Craft offering a unique range of limited edition products, it's wonderful that I have access to global treasures just a click away. 
A week back, I placed my first pre-order with them for the Lalita Hand stitched scarf. The hand woven details, rich colors and the fact that it's made in India was reason enough for me to fall in love with this piece. I had my fingers crossed and hoped that this product would reach the target pre-order quantities, if not owning this product would only be a dream. But finally a mail popped up in my inbox and Voila !!! The order was confirmed.  It's a long wait (7 months), before this product can be brought to life. But for something so exquisite, I can wait. It will still be pretty nippy here  in Virginia when the package arrives, so I can put the Lalita scarf to good use as a stole or make it a part of my home decor by using it as a throw:) 

Some of the other products that are on my wish list are : 
 Raya Ceramic serving platter (still up for grabs)
The hand of Fatima door knocker ( Sold out. This is on my wish list when I visit Morocco)

Keep watching this space for more such wonderful finds........

Images : Via 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Breakfast Nook Console Update with Treasures From the Farmers' Market

Summer brings with it the delightful experience of enjoying the local farmers' market. "Lake Anne Farmers' Market" being minutes away from my home and rated as Northern Virginia's Best Market, this place is a popular haunt for my family and I to spend our lazy summer weekend mornings. 
Last Saturday we gave into the temptation to wander the stalls, taking in the village market atmosphere and loading up our bags with some of the freshest produce in the neighborhood. Personally for me, the benefits of shopping at a local farmers' market out weighs the convenience of shopping at the local grocery store. The most obvious benefits being endorsing a greener environment, supporting local farmer's in their business and enjoying the health benefits of food grown close to where it’s consumed (that is fresher, tastier and better in nutritional value). 
The Lake Anne Farmer's Market is not only a great place to buy your weekly fresh produce and baked goodies but is also a wonderful place to look for some one-of-a-kind global crafts. I was thrilled when I walked into a stall that was stocked with woven treasures from Ghana. I could not resist picking up a pair of gorgeous fans in vibrant colors with beautiful handwoven details. As it turned out, they are the perfect summer addition to gussy up my breakfast nook wall.
If your like me and love accessorizing your home with flowers, then farmers' market is the place for you. Grocery store bought flowers are nice, but they sometimes seem to run out of variety. Assorted flower bouquets at farmers' markets are unique and I love the fact that they look like they were hand picked while out on a long walk. Placed in a glass jar camouflaged by a candle holder from World Market, the setting comes alive with these beauties. A baskets of peaches from the Farmers' Market not only help to pull the colors together but is a healthy option to snack on within arms reach. 

Another new addition to this nook is the beautiful lamp that I managed to snatch up at an unbelievable price from World Market. The paisley lamp shade was love at first sight and I think the corner looks bright and summery with that lovely fresh apple green lamp .  
So here's a final look at how everything came together !!! I hope your inspired by these simple and fun summer decor ideas. Happy decorating folks !!!

Images: Clicked by me. Please do not use without prior written permission. 
Images are the property of Sruthi Singh and subject to copyright. 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

New York City (Through My lens) - Part 2

In today's post, I'm going to let my captures of the engineering and architectural icons of New York City do the talking for me :) When it comes to photography, the power of black and white is indubitable. I think, monochromatic tones give the images an artistic, timeless feel and challenges the dexterity of a person looking through the lens. I do hope that you, my lovely readers will agree with me, when I say that NYC looks stunning  in these images...........
A sculptural view of the skyscrapers of NYC

Clock-wise from left : (1) Freedom Tower, (2) Wall Street  -Financial District, (3) A must experience when in New York - the subway

Up-close and personal with Statue of Liberty

New York City Public Library

Clock-wise from Left : (1)Manhattan Bridge, (2)Brooklyn Bridge and (3)Williamsburg Bridge

Central Park : Bow Bridge - A harmonious balance of motor, steel and green
Images: Clicked by me. Please do not use without prior written permission. 
Images are the property of Sruthi Singh and subject to copyright.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

New York City (Through My Lens) - Part 1

Back from our trip to the ultimate metropolis, "New York City" !!! With an inimitable dynamic pulse, this city never ceases to amaze me. 

Within an hour of being in NY, we were in sync with the city's beat and traced our path effortlessly, exploring perennial favorites of the tourists. Pounding the grid-like streets is the best way to take in the city's sights and sounds. But if you want an easy way out, the city is very well connected by a subway and you always have a yellow cab at your service.
If you have 3 days or more at your disposal, then I suggest that you plan your city tour on your own and delve into what the city has to offer at leisure.

The city's sky-scape boasts of architectural feats and I'm not surprised why. Cruising south down the Hudson, the scenic Midtown skyscrapers offer abundance of photography opportunities. For someone like me whose caught by the shutter bug, we took two different cruises, one by day and the other by night. But I must say the evening date with the city was what I enjoyed the most. We got to observe the city's skyscape against the melange of sunset hues and once the sun went down, the city looked resplendent in all it's night light.
Hungry and need to call it a day, head over to Little Italy - the best kept secret of NYC. Dining at Lombardi's and then walking across to Rice to Riches to enjoy the most delicious rice pudding is a perfect way to end the evening. (My personal favorite at Rice to Riches is the Man-made mascarpone flavor. With a light creamy taste and texture, the cherries add the perfect sweet tart contrast to the dish.) 

The city has pockets of green in the midst of the glass and granite canvas and the most famous of all is the Central Park. This 800 acres of lush green prime land, is a welcome escape to the city's residents and tourists alike. Another favorite of mine is Bryant Park. Take a breather and rest those tired feet and then get back into the grove to explore the hustle-bustle of the city.
Any opportunity that I have to revisit this city, I'm game........Circle back with me tomorrow for more captures (in monochromatic tones) of this wonderful city  that never sleeps..........

Images: Clicked by me. Please do not use without prior written permission. 
Images are the property of Sruthi Singh and subject to copyright.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Turning Up the Color Outdoors

Gardening to me is way to collaborate with "Nature". I'm usually the kind of person who likes to be in control of everything (well almost everything..;). But ever since I began gardening, I've come to realize of who's actually in-charge and who get's to control, direct and take the lead when it comes to the landscape outside. The duration of each plant's lifespan is under the direction of Mother Nature. And that's what makes gardening such a joy is to be able to partner with such an influential force and turn the outdoor canvas into a collaborative work of art.
Here in Virginia, gardening is not an easy task. The seasons take a toll on the gardens and there's a lot of damage control to be done after winter. This year though we did a little planning ahead of time and planted bulbs belonging to the "Blazing Star", Dahlias and Tulips family to amplify the color quotient of the pathway to my door. These plants not only add an exotic feel to the area but also help to paint large sections with bold strokes of color. 
I've landscaped every inch of soil at my disposal and I know I've done it right, when I see the bees and butterflies partying hard in my garden. Here are a few closeups of the exquisite beauties from my garden......... 

I like treating my outdoor spaces as an extension of my indoors. Materializing that thought process, I've also managed to create a little private oasis for my family by incorporating weather resistant furniture, potted plants in colorful containers, and beautiful garden accessorizes. By drawing inspiration from the colors used in my sunroom and favoring deep hues ranging from reds, oranges to pinks, the space flows effortlessly once the doors are thrown open for entertaining.

The outdoor walls do not give me the liberty to hang shelves to display plants. However, my end of the season bargain hunts were fruitful and I landed myself these wrought iron plant display stands that give me the room to add layers of interest at different levels. 

Colorful watering cans are not only functional but also add a dash of color and can be used as a garden/outdoor accessory too. 

I hope you enjoyed the snapshots of my garden tour and I do wish you find your outdoor calling and enjoy every facet of gardening be it the anticipation of a new leaf, bud or flower, the mystery of not knowing how the season is going to contour the garden, the sense of contentment when things go as planned, or the angst of watching a loving plant struggling to thrive.........

You'll take care and do drop me a line as I love hearing from you'll. As for now, I'm going to pack my bags for a weekend trip to New York, so miss me while I'm gone.......see you'll back here next week :)

Images: Clicked by me. Please do not use without prior written permission. 
Images are the property of Sruthi Singh and subject to copyright.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Happy 1st Birthday Blog !!!

Yes, it's been a year since I started my blog and Oh boy! What a creative journey it's been. Today, join me in celebrating this wonderful day with a little tea party outdoors:) 

Firstly, I'd like to Thank you for accepting "The East Coast Desi" with wide open arms and the love and appreciation has been overwhelming:) In the past year, we've celebrated home decor, photography, food, travel, seasons, festivals, chai time and the everyday life, right here on TECD !!! 
With summer sporting more mature gardens in deeper tones of green, the outdoors is a perfect place to enjoy a tea party.  

The initiatory thought behind starting a dedicated blogging space was to share my experiences in decorating my home and inspire my readers along the way to shape, enhance and accentuate their very own space. But over the past year, I've come to realize that TECD has grown to be much more than that. It's come to be woven into the fabric of my readers daily lives. It's come to be associated as a virtual archive for visual therapy through pretty imagery, as a muse when it comes to Indian interiors and color inspiration and also as a space to take a breather and enjoy some "ME Time" (while you sip on your tea, reading through the day's post).

Couldn't resist this tea pot sporting the paisley pattern. 
I'm often asked, what sparks my passion for blogging. And I find myself answering, "it has to do something with the act of creating". Let me elaborate on that. My need to make my home a personal retreat through the process of curating, designing and styling is a creative exercise. When I'm consumed in this process, it's like I'm almost in a meditative state and the rest of the world melts away. And as I blog and share it with you'll, the act of creation is magnified. 
Containers from my spice box are used to hold snacks for the outdoor tea party.
Blogging has been both eventful and gratifying. If I have to weigh the success of my blog in tangible terms, it's these mile stones I'm so proud of having achieved. (It may sound like I'm bragging but humor me today as it's my blog's birthday). To mention a few : A 22 page spread in the April issue of the "CuratedMagazine; Spotlight on IKEA Family Live Facebook  and India Circus Facebook; Rated top 10 Indian Interior design blogs on IndiBlogger (as of June 2014 stats); Showcased on the best Indian Home/Design blogs such as My Dream Canvas, Aalayam and All Things NiceMentions in the press - Indian express and Times of India (Times Property - photo shown below : article dated March 28, 2014) and 135 refreshing and artistically stimulating posts.
The East Coast Desi's  festive decor inspiration featured in the Times Of India.

But in intangible terms, it's my enthusiastic readers appreciation, interaction and acceptance that makes it all worth while. While my blog is brought to life by photographs and text, it is really the many encouraging and supportive readers who give it soul. Be it the growing members via Google Friend Connect or the host of like -minded friends who connect through Facebook, I am grateful to each and everyone of you who stops by every single day and showers me with their wonderful compliments and appreciation!!! If my blog brings a smile to your face and you know of family and friends who would enjoy this blog, then I kindly urge you to share the link to my blog, as my blog thrives on promotion by my wonderful readers (via word of mouth and Facebook). 

I would also like to thank my wonderful family and friends 
(close to home and in the blogging fraternity) whose unwavering faith and confidence in me, has been instrumental in the success of this blog. Love you guys:)
All it takes are a few accessories to create outdoor spaces with indoor comforts.
The journey has just begun and my blog and I have so much more to share with you'll. We have some wonderful home tours, decor inspiration, giveaways and more coming up this year. I have come a full circle in my blogging year. Happily, it is a circle and I'm ready to go around again.

Images: Clicked by me. Please do not use without prior written permission. 
Images are the property of Sruthi Singh and subject to copyright.