Monday, November 30, 2009

Christmas Tree

... worked another one for Christmas today.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Patched-up Bag

This happens with me many a times; when I am frantically looking for something, I never get that and instead I get something else which is interesting in some other way. Today morning the same thing happened!! I was looking for some old left over embroidery threads and instead I found this pretty bag. I had stitched this bag about two years back during my sewing tutorials. Made from leftover pieces of fabric, this bag uses a variety of fabrics like block prints, batik, ikat, regular screen prints, kota, extra warp patterned and other woven textured fabrics.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


This is called ‘kamandalu’.

Kamandalu was used in the olden days to carry water or any liquid for that matter. It was carried usually by saints. I found one this at my grand fathers place. He had bought it long back he doesn’t even remember when and says, “30 to 35 years ago may be!” It is heavy and is made of brass and copper. The kamandalu has a very sacred and religious use. Now-a-days it is seen only in temples to give out the tirtha. It is nothing but a lota with a handle and spout. The same ingenious ‘lota’, that Charles Eames identified as the paradigm for Indian design.

Photo Credits: pzore

The above photograph illustrates Samarth Ramdas Swami carrying the kamandalu; one of the utilitarian products he always carried with himself.

Monday, November 23, 2009

3 idiots

Just crafted yesterday, these are my new knitting learning explorations. Initially I made one of them and was thinking a name for it!! Chiggi Wiggi!!!?? Is'nt it very chiggi-wiggi kinds!!?!!
Then I knitted two more with some leftover yarn and thought of '3 idiots' as a name for the group. It was fun!!

Acknowledgements: Julie Williams, Kappu maushi and the movie '3 idiots'

Friday, November 20, 2009

Photo Feature

The Times Shipping Journal, a monthly journal focusing on the shipping business featured an article on the not so focused side of Mumbai's port- the ship breaking yard at Reay road called Darukana; in the issue of October 2009.

The article features photographs captured by me. For reference you can have a look at my earlier post on ship breaking here and of course the contents of the article can be grasped in the images below...

Images: Digital pages of the Times Shipping Journal, October 2009

PS: Many thanks to Ayyappan Vazhayil, Editor, Times Shipping Journal.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The advent of Christmas

Half of November is already past, fall is almost to an end with the beginning of winter and Christmas... and everyone is busy working on and posting Christmas stuff on blogs... decoration ideas, gift ideas, card ideas… etc! So I thought I should also post some Christmas pattern ideas!! Anyone out there wants to buy some Christmas patterns for cards/fabrics/stationery/tableware or any exploratory purpose??

>Swirly Snowflakes

Will be posting more on Christmas soon…

More posts on snowflakes here and here.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Crafting Threads : Crafting Lives

Mumbai won’t be Mumbai if not for the street shopping!!

There is something new once every two months (roughly) on the streets here. It goes like…some magnetic marble kind of things that make an electrifying sound which is creepy at the same time when played with, the bubble kind of balloons that stick to each other, and then the spider man who climbs down any wall, then the tickly head massager etc… most of it is “Made in China”. And you will find people selling the same stuff all across the city. The prices are high when it is new and then shrinks gradually. Somehow I find these things very mechanical and rigid, so let me talk about some sensitive and “handmade” things “Made in India”.

“Handmade on the streets??!!” What first comes to mind is the street besides the Jehangir art gallery and you explore the hand done on the spot portraits, miniature paintings on leaves, name on rice, creative wire craft etc. Also, some hand embroidered wall hangings and hand carved wooden blocks from Gujarat. Passing over these crafty arts or the arty crafts…is the CSMVS (Chattrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalay formerly known as Prince of Wales Museum) where good handicraft exhibitions are on displayed once in a while. A month back, I explored the exhibition of Paramparik Karigar at the Museum. The exhibition was nice. I purchased a hand woven silk stole from Kotpad, Orissa. (About the stole in the next post)

This is more than enough as a backgrounder…

On my way back, something on the street caught my senses and that was a young man crafting something with lots of colored threads. ‘Threads’ I see and do not explore… is something not possible!

So, this young man was crafting out names using colorful nylon-polyester threads to use as wrist bands or just to tie on to bags. Choose your colors and write him your name, he will make a band within 10 minutes for just Rs 20. After grasping a bit of things I realized that I had seen many people on the streets all over crafting their lives through these threads. Sameer Pathan, this young man tells me that some of his friends from Delhi who practiced this craft came over to Mumbai and enthusiasts like him learnt the same and now are practicing it here. I wonder how such chains of creative learning and living begin?? I’m sure this has passed on to other cities too.

Sammer Pathan (20) is a native of Hubli, Karnataka and he is in Mumbai to study and earn a living and he enjoys doing it in a creative way. He attends college, studies and then in his leisure time he is onto his creative skills. He says, “It is easy and if one has interest one will enjoy it more.” He buys the material from local market; his kit is completed with a set of scissors, a book and a pen to note down correct spellings. He is smart and does a well finished job. If you have difficulty in choosing colors, he will suggest his options! Cheers to his commitment and dedication!!

I await for the next interesting thing on the streets...