It thrills me no end to see the product design scene in India is suddenly on an adrenaline rush. It's like watching a garden bloom on Discovery channel time lapse video. I've been writing on design and interiors for five odd years now, so I'm constantly coming across new brands, labels, studios and designers to admire.

Recently, I came across a new furniture design studio called Project Wood. No brownie points for guessing that they love making things with wood. Run by Kanika Pahwa, Project Wood organically grew out of Studio Ezube, New Delhi based interior design firm.

Styled and photographed by Aditi Gaitonde

"As an interior designer, I'm constantly on the lookout for accessories that I can use for projects. Since I often couldn't find accents to suit my requirements, I began designing and making my own accessories and furniture pieces," explains Kanika about Project Wood, a 2-month-old product design studio. Most of their creations are handmade and almost all of them can be customised too.

Newer products are added every fortnight to the e-shop, I've already made a wishlist of my favourite five. Use the Code: SMT20 to get 20% off site wide discount on

1. Pyramids Wall Frames - Set of 3
Their form instantly remind me of teepees and Red Indians! These dip dyed frames have small shelves that can hold a curio or two. Although it was designed for a kids room, I think its minimalistic silhouette works even for adults. Made of white ash wood, the colours can be customised.
Cost: Rs 5,000 for a set 
20% off with code SMT20: Rs 4,000 for a set 

2. Sand Dunes Console
Love how this console's design plays with light and shadow to create a visual treat. The front of this console is made of rubber wood while the rest of it is crafted from commercial ply. Two toned in natural teak and white ash, this too can be personalised to suit the dining or living room.
Cost: Rs 35,000
20% off with code SMT20: Rs 28,000

3. Hook Hill Hangers - Set of 2
These wall accessories were crafted as hangers to hold bags, scarves, clothes, jewellery and what not. Personally, I'd use it wall art. Minimalistic in design, these white ash wood hangers are fitted with ceramic hooks that come in four patterns - red, green, brown and blue.
Cost: Rs 625 for a set
20% off with code SMT20: Rs 500 for a set

4. The Rolling Lamp 
This contemporary lamp is made out of woven yarn and it about 10 feet long. The sheer length and the neutral colour lets you get creative with its placement. I like the idea of using two of these to create a headboard art in the bedroom where the bulbs dangle on each side of the bed.

If you need an angle or anchor to hold the light in place, Project Wood can custom make one for you too. They also plan to release this product is different colours. Also is it just me or is there something delightfully boho about this lamp.
Cost: Rs 799
20% off with code SMT20: Rs 640

5. Trio Frame Shelves - Set of 3
Clean lined, functional and versatile, these wall frames can hold knick knacks just like the Pyramid frames. Made of teak, their colours can be customised as well. I love that they were made with the idea of introducing plants indoors. If you ask me, together with the plants...the setting almost looks like a 3-dimensional work of art.
Cost: Rs 1,800 for a set
20% off with code SMT20: Rs 1,440 for a set

Images courtesy: Project Wood

Full disclosure: sent me the The Rolling Lamp in exchange for an honest review. All of the content and opinions in this post are my own.

Let's talk about periods. It's as much a part of our lives as breathing and burping (yes, girls burp ok). Hormones are all over the place but then again that's why we have chocolates. For me, I'm constantly worrying about staining my dress or the chair I'm sitting on for 8 hours straight at work. Did I mention overall discomfort that leads to general crankiness? Yeahhh... add that to the list right next to checking the pad every few hours. Why am I tell you all this?

Because I truly believe that periods are not the end of the world. It's no reason for us to stress or worry and it's definitely no reason to stay away from normal activities that make us happy. According to me, the one thing that makes periods a trying time is the discomfort - physical and emotional. And we must do what we can to eliminate this feeling. We have chocolate, wine, books and Zayn Malik to keep us emotionally upbeat. In a bid to reduce the physical discomfort, Whisper innovated and came up with something cool.

Well, I celebrated International Women's Day this year with Whisper. One of my favourite feminine hygiene brands, Whisper invited a bunch of bloggers to Tote on the Turf at Mahalaxmi, Mumbai for the launch of their newest innovation - Ultra Soft.

We met Radhika Apte who so eloquently pointed out that since we're on our period for 1/6th of our lives, it's about time we get comfortable in our own skin. I couldn't agree more. Not only do we need to start treating it normally like any other bodily function, we also need to cut ourselves some slack. We need to be confident and comfortable enough to choose to do what we want and when we want it, especially when we're menstruating. Because it's not an illness or a disease, it's just periods. It cannot and should not hold us back.

Gynaecologist Dr. Nandita Palshetkar spoke about how important it is for us to be hygienic, especially since it's so crazy hot and humid in most part of India. And finally, P&G's senior scientist who came down all the way from Germany, Edit Tilly walked us through their new creation - the New Whisper Ultra Soft.

It's pretty crazy when you think about the amount of research, science, time and effort that goes into making a sanitary pad. Whisper Ultra is thin already. But the Ultra Soft is twice as softer. That's amazing because one of our biggest issues with sanitary pads is that they can be corse to the skin and leave us with rashes.

To touch, Ultra Soft is like silk #NoKidding. Apart from having a two layer top sheet for softness, it also has these pores that soaks everything into the gel underneath. And its super gel binds, holds as well as kills odour.

Structurally, it's wider at the back which is great because it lets you wear the pad longer without worrying much, especially at night.

I decided to take up the #UltraSoftChallenge. I've been using it for the past 3 days of my period and I can safely say it's pretty comfortable. Not only is it thin, but it's so soft and doesn't hurt the skin even after my 45 minute evening walk.

Absorption wise, it's good too. It does pull the wetness away from the skin which also adds to the comfy quotient. I also tend to have problems with the wings and how they sometimes lose their glue and come off. No such thing has happened yet with the Ultra Soft. The wings are pretty sturdy and keep the pad in place.

The New Whisper Ultra Soft is priced lower than the Ultra Thin at Rs 64 for 7 pads. It comes in 2 sizes: L and XL.

PS: Give this video a look-see to see how we celebrated International Women's Day.

Full Disclosure: This post was created in collaboration with Whisper. All opinions, thoughts and views are wholly of the writer only. 

I've known Anish for a few months now. And if there's anything that can be said about him, it's this - his passion for photography is as evident and blazing like the sun at the peak of summer. Professionally, he's a fashion photographer who equally loves shooting portraits. Personally, he's my favourite Punjabi.

The photo essay that you'll experience in a few scrolls from now was shot a few years ago in his homeland. The words describing it are his. The perceptive will gauge the irony in the title of the essay. But they would also be right to think of it as gloomy. It is. In most parts, it's hazy to a point of distorted. There's a sense of longing and uncertainty that pricks through the skin. It's cold, yes, but winter is more than the drop of temperature and the absence of warmth. It's also a brutal reminder of death where the landscape mourns and come to terms with closing curve of life. 

Photo Essay: Anish Sarai's Winter Epiphany

Timeless thoughts of a winter's stare;
eyes gazing over a landscape bare.
Memories drift on a blustery breeze;
dying light ushers in the freeze.
Reaching out for a grasp on the present;
stillness sets in, alone, and desolate.
Future unknown, outcome uncertain;
brilliance shadowed by a drawn curtain.

--- By Michael A. Barron

Vision is a funny thing. How one perceives and interprets a thing largely depends on what one is experiencing in their life at that moment. Like a happy person sees brighter colours.

I was visiting my maternal village in the great land of Punjab after decades… but it wasn't for a happy occasion. The pre-fed images imprinted in my mind by Bollywood as well as the previously experienced memories of Punjab were strictly different from what I was seeing now.

In movies, this iconic land is forever depicted as green, happy and flourishing with stereotypical imagery of prosperity. But there is a darker side to my native land. Like the plain everyday fact that the community is deeply ridden with drug inflicted youth and immense scarcity of jobs.

Winters are dry with vast landscapes barren landscapes that are lost in a haze. A fog so thick you cannot see beyond it. This state of desolateness, a state of my mind at that very moment, is what I attempted to capture.

You can see more of his work on his 
websiteInstagram and Behance. He can be reached at
 All pictures are property of Anish Sarai. Republishing or using them without prior permission of the artist is strictly prohibited.

Couple in Indian wedding clothes

As we inch our way towards our big day, date undecided, I find myself marvelling at the concept of marriage and making a home. We've had eight years to know each other as two separate entities. As we stand at the cusp of a new life stage, I guess I'm not mighty concerned about the legality of it all. A piece of paper, a few random rituals and a couple of signatures don't make a marriage, do they?

In the "civilised society" it does. From where I stand, it makes a wedding, maybe a few nice photographs but certainly not a marriage. To me, marriage is more like the second definition thrown up by Google: "a combination or mixture of elements.” It’s an amalgamation by choice that riots against everything to continue to be an amalgamation. A coupling of the mind and heart and soul that cannot comprehend life as a singularity.

So here we are making a home together with our family and friends as witnesses and equally important participants in our story. And you guys, of course.

In the next few months, you will see us trying to figure the first leg of the rest of our lives. You will see us trying to take a house and turn it into a home. You will see trying to do-it-ourselves and make the most of a cosy apartment in the middle of Mumbai. You will see us debating on the colour of upholstery and framing art. You will see us making a home...

I’ve been an interiors and design writer and lover for six years now, so my love for home decor is plainly evident like the sun in the sky. But I never in my wildest dreams expected D.R.R TrollKill, the boy I’ve known and loved since I was 20, to be a decor enthusiast. And to make matters extra exciting, we have two different and often conflicting ideas of “beautiful”. This is going to be fun to watch… for you.

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P.S: Everyone has a couple hashtag and I want one too, even if it's as lame as #PaoBottleMasalaMisalIdliForLife
Girl in vintage ruffled lace dress

She believes she was born a century too late. For ruffles and lace make her swoon.

She dressed up in a vintage-esque dress for Race day on a breezy Saturday. She bet on a subdued fascinator, black tie-up heels and simple black clutch. #VictorianMuch

Ruffled dress: #SaleHaul
Floral headband: Accessorize
Tie-up black heels: #SaleHaul

CC creme:
Lakme S# Bronze
Mascara: Estee Lauder Sumptuous Extreme Mascara -  01 Extreme Black
Eye Shadow: The Little Black Book Palette from Elf- Volume II
Eye Liner: Maybelline New York The Colossal Liner - Black

Photographer: D.R.R TrollKill
Shot on: Moto G3 

Girl in vintage ruffled lace dress

Girl in vintage ruffled lace dress makeup warm reds

From the many things that bother me, migraines are somewhere on top of the list. This, much to my dismay, has resulted in several lifestyle choices. I cannot eat Chinese food with MSG, cannot drink alcohol as much as I want, cannot have too much chocolate, cannot deviate from a strict schedule etc.

recipe whiskey cocktail drinks

Why am I telling you this? Because lately I've realised that the only alcoholic drink that doesn't give me a headache is the good ol' Whiskey Sour. Maybe it's in my head (pun intended), but I'm going to stick to my chubby glass of Whiskey Sour for a while with lime and not orange. Orange is next level yucky.

So I figured I should learn to make this at home for emergencies like... Mondays or Wednesdays or afternoons. Most recipes online involved a sour mix which I don't know where to find in Mumbai, mainly because I haven't tried looking for it #LazyGoose. But this recipe is different. Not only does it not need a sour mix, it also combines utilises one of my favourite spices - Cinnamon.

Recipe for Cinnamon Honey Whiskey Sour 

3 tbsp whiskey/bourbon of your choice (used an old Johnny Walker mini I found lying around)
2 tbsp of lime juice
2-3 tsp of honey
pinch of cinnamon

1. Fill a cocktail shaker/mason jar/flask with several cubes of ice. Add the whiskey, lime juice, honey and cinnamon. Shake well.

2. In your glass, pour fresh ice and strain the cold whiskey cocktail into it.

3. #DownIt

whiskey cocktail recipe easy

I remember when I was about seven or eight years old, my ever experimental mom bought an ice cream maker from one of those teleshopping networks. I was forbidden to enter the dining room where she was attempting to make her first batch of homemade ice cream. Mom used to do all sorts of mad things back then. Despite having been given strict instructions to stay out of her way, I slowly crept up the long corridor in our old house and pushed aside the stiff door curtain to the dining room.

recipe easy ice cream homemade

I couldn't believe my eyes. Maybe it was because I was so little, but to me it looked like there had been an explosion. White powder, water and ice were all over the place... on the floor, the table and on mumma. She chased me out before I could enter. If my memory serves me right, that was the last time we used that wretched ice cream maker. We still have it though, tucked away on a higher shelf in the kitchen where no one can (and should) reach. I don't really remember the taste of the ice cream but I'll never forget that scene. We still laugh about it.

ice cream homemade easy recipe

A few weeks ago Tupperware sent me the Speedy Chef to try out. While I was researching, I came across a recipe for a no churn ice cream that was too easy to be true. Flashbacks to my mumma making ice cream happened and I shuddered with fear. If I make a mess in mum's kitchen now, I'll have to clean up and that's a scenario I'd best avoid.

recipe tupperware

It went on the back burner and I asked D.R.R TrollKill's mom for her famous yogurt dip recipe (coming soon). The Speedy Chef did a marvellous job with that. I was rather surprised at the power of this non-electric appliance and figured I'd try, for fun, my plan B.

I still cannot believe how simple it all was. This no churn ice cream recipe can be aced with only 3 ingredients. I kid you not. Three simple ingredients that can be found in India and anywhere else in the world. Nothing exotic - just heavy cream, condensed milk and Oreos. Yes, I'm a little obsessed with Oreos right now after making delicious no bake truffles. If you thought that recipe was simple, this one kicks that one's butt.

And making it extra extra easy was the Tupperware Speedy Chef with its many whisk thingies.

Recipe for No Churn 3 Ingredient Cookies & Cream Ice Cream

cookies oreo cadbury silk ice cream

480 ml of heavy cream
400 gms of condensed milk (I used just 1 can of Nestle's Milkmaid)
1 packet of vanilla Oreos
Hershey's chocolate sauce (optional)


1. I bought a 500 ml pack of heavy whipping cream (unbranded from a random milk shop). Put almost all of it (left a little bit because the recipe said 480 ml) into the Tupperware Speedy Chef. Closed it and turned the lever clockwise a few times.

After the third circle, you'll begin to feel the resistance...which essential means the running heavy cream is getting whipped...whipped good. By the fifth or sixth circle, you'll instinctively know that you're done. Open the Tupperware Speedy Chef to check for stiff peaks. You need that cream to form nice stiff peaks.

2. In another bowl, dump the whole 400 gm can of condensed milk. With a spatula, gentle fold the whipped cream from the Speedy Chef into this bowl. Mix with love till both these ingredients are well combined. Keep mixing till you stop seeing streaks of cream coloured condensed milk.

3. Break vanilla Oreo cookies into 4-5 pieces. I used about 10 cookies for this mixture. Dump that in and mix it up.

4. Pour this into a nice loaf pan and smoothen out the top. Push it into the freezer and leave it overnight.

5. Ta-da! Serve with a drizzle of chocolate sauce if you want to.

recipe easy cookies oreo milkmaid cream

So creamy, melt-in-your-mouth and deeeelish... I've already promised a three different sets of groups I'll make this for them. Why? Because it takes only 3 ingredients (all under 400 bucks), 1 awesome non-electric appliance and zero mess. It's that easy!

PS: Special thanks to my pal Bhops for lending me his DSLR camera.

Full disclosure: Tupperware sent me the Speedy Chef in exchange for an honest review. All of the content and opinions in this post are my own. 

chocolate sauce

I've been terrible these past few months. Ever since I've got that neck and back problem, I've been ignoring my commitments and promises and spending precious time writhing in bed with a cold pack. But enough. Enough of pity, enough of pain sensitivity, enough of ignoring my blog/friends/family/life. It's 2017 dammit. My 28th chance to finally get it right. Besides, the new year is a good time as any to start a new music series with my favourite musician, no?

So, meet Adriel George. I met him over nine years ago when we were studying in the same college. I remember watching him with my jaw on the floor as he danced during our graduation party. Although he studied IT, Adriel chose to string together his own path, note after note. He's now a music composer (a damn good one at that) and producer for films, theatre and those Youtube ads that you sometimes can't skip and end up liking.

That's our man on the keyboards
A much sought after piano teacher, he loves sneaking into hotel lobbies and malls with grand pianos and serenading late-night guests with his renditions of famous movie themes. Although I'm yet to catch him in action, I have heard him tune out the world and drown in chords at his studio in Santacruz, Mumbai.

On a regular day, you'll find him writing hauntingly touching orchestral arrangements or obscure dance music, while smothering his cat Lilith aka Lil' Kitty (she's ghetto like that) with love and affection. I've admired his choice in music for years. Varied as it is, I somehow seem to connect with several songs that he suggests.

He was kind enough to create a playlist for this post that has been long loooonnngggg overdue. But to hell with pain and nerve compression, you are going to hear this compilation and you are going to hear it now!

Listen to his original compositions on SoundCloud: 
And stalk him on Facebook:

Tell us what you think of his six song playlist for January.

Adriel George talks about his January Playlist for 
The first two songs on my January list are by Glass Animals, an English indie rock band from Oxford with a very groovy sound and strong catchy melodies. "Youth (2016)" is from their album How to be Human Being and "Pools" is an older track from their 2014 album Zaba.

The third song "Diddy Bop (2016)" is by 25 year old Fatimah Warner, better known by her stage name, Noname. She's an American hip hop recording artist/ poet from the Bronzeville, Chicago.

After her track, listen to "Professional Rapper (2015)" by David Andrew Burd, better known by his stage name, Lil Dicky. He's an American rapper and comedian who admittedly began his rap career to merely get attention comedically and eventually fell head over heels with the genre.

Up next is "Au pays d'Alice (2014)", a jazz musical inspired by Lewis Carroll's 1865 novel Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Accompanying French-Lebanese musician Ibrahim Maalouf is the rapper/poet Oxmo Puccino. A stunning adaptation of Carroll's iconic story, it features various musicians including a thirty piece classical orchestra and a children's choir. My favourite one from the album is "Jamais quand il faut" that's followed by the entire piece performed live.