December is here and festive time has started. I have heard that we are expecting a white Christmas this year in London. From what I know, this has only happened four times in the last 51 years! So I am praying for a white Christmas. Just thinking about being home and watching the snow fall makes me feel all loved up. Like every year, I make an effort to decorate the house and welcome the snuggly festive season. This year I haven’t managed to do much- just a few decorative setups to make the house look Christmassy.
Decor 1 – Golden sparkly pine cones display.
This is a very simple decor idea and kid-friendly too. To create this setupp
This a very simple decor idea and you can use the decorated pine cones in various ways. I have used it as my Christmas dining table centrepiece.
Decor 2 – Small Christmas Tree Set up
If you’re fed up of picking out pine needles from your floor after the festive season, then Christmas tree in a pot is worth considering. I bought mine from our local florist. I personally do not like artificial Christmas trees and have always bought real ones. This year I wanted to try a compact option and create a mini Christmas set up. After personally trying both big and small Christmas trees, I would advise to set up a big tree to get a grand look and potted tree for a mini, hassle-free decor.
This year I plan to decorate my table with red and gold Christmas theme. Both are very rich colours and create a royal look. Everyone has their unique way of decorating and this is my take on table setup. On actual Christmas day, I will add more candles and use Christmas crackers.
I hope you managed to set up your Christmas tree and had fun decorating it. I would love to see your tree pictures so do share it with me on social media. And finally, this will be my last post for this year and I hope to see you guys soon in the new year. Till then have a merry Christmas and a very happy New Year. Keep shining and stay fabulous.
As millions of people all over the world celebrated the most awaited Hindu festival of the year, I sat down and had a look at memories created from this year.
I always wish to do a lot more around Diwali but only manage to get limited things done. With a full-on working week and kids, I end up leaving things to the very last minute. Luckily I have nice Indian shops in my high street, so any last-minute requirement can always be taken care of. There are a few different things I try to do on Diwali and here are my favourites
Diwali crafts with kids
Pom Pom Diwali Thali
As a mum of two, I enjoy Diwali crafts with my kids. I have to confess that I am not a craft person but do try and make it fun for the kids. Every year we paint diyas and use them to decorate our pooja area. This year we created a kids version of a pooja thali. This project was totally impromptu and luckily we managed to find stuff in our craft box.
To create kids pooja thali
– Take a paper plate and cover it with glue.
– Sprinkle loads of glitter to cover the base.
– Use craft pom poms (you can find them in any craft shops) and glue them on the edge of the plate. Since I just used our existing stock hence I do not have a colour scheme but you can create a colour scheme and choose pom pom colours accordingly.
– Put a hand painted diya in the middle and you are ready to go.
Diwali/ Festive decor
This is a top priority on my list. I love prepping the house on Diwali and trying different decor ideas. I spend most of my day in setting up the house, getting things ready for pooja and cooking. This year I created a few Diwali setups. Have a look at some Diwali decor inspirations below.
Decorated my room furniture with flowers and candles.
Mithai table decoration.
Created floor rangoli using paan leaves and flowers.
Main diya thali.
Decoration with marigold garlands. I managed to get marigold flowers from East Ham, just in time for Diwali.
Diwali dinner and food table setting.
Getting ready for Diwali
This is my favourite bit of all. My style aesthetics is an expression of who I am and I love being creative about it. I use style as my creative canvas to express myself fully and put myself out there. This year I wore an aqua blue, high collar long kurta with block print. I paired the kurta with white wide leg trousers from Zara. This is a very relaxed indo western look. You can also wear this kurta with tribal silver jewellery and create a more ethnic look. My kurta is from Shreedesignz.
So that was my Diwali. I hope you got to create some lovely memories this year. Let me know what’s your favourite thing to do around Diwali.
Some time back I did a special blog post called the ‘Looks and Location Series’, where I collaborated with Ameeta from Ayewanderful.com. The purpose of doing this series is to explore unique venues in London for quick after-work meetups and experiment with fashion. Today’s post is all about our next find and how we can wear our Autumn style.
For a quick coffee after work, we found this cute little in-store café – Saucer & Spritz in Oasis flagship store in Tottenham Court Road store. This is a relatively new store that launched last year. It’s a concept store created to engage shoppers and provide more than just clothes shopping. The store offers Saucer & Spritz cafe, Pin & Polish nail bar and personal styling services. If you want to mix some fashion, pampering and coffee then this place is for you. The interiors offer a relaxed setting and take inspiration from the tropical lifestyle. I also just found out that the Tottenham Court Road store is playing host to a series of special readings with three inspiring authors. You can book your tickets here.
What we wore
I chose this dark bottle green coloured floral dress. As we were meeting up after work on a Friday, I thought it would be an appropriate option. I am not a big fan of florals but I just couldn’t resist this beauty. I love the dark colour, truly appropriate for autumn, and if I wear it with a black biker jacket then it balances the overall look without making you look overly feminine. The dress is from Zara and I seriously debated in my head whether or not to buy it. In the end, I gave into the temptation and was glad I did so. This dress is a key autumn/winter item in my closet. It also follows the autumn floral trend which is a key look this season. You can dress it up or down, wear it from day to night and I could give ten more reasons to justify my purchase. I loved the dress, hence bought it. It wasn’t an impulsive purchase but a very considered decision. I paired the dress with a burgundy cross body bag from Mango and some minimal jewellery.
Shop my look here
Ameeta opted for a very classic look. She wore this white shirt with pussy bow details and paired it with everyday denim. She did a great job in carrying her
outfit from work to after-work meetup. What added some drama to her look was the fuchsia pink sandals which helped in glamming up her look.
We had a lovely time chatting about blogging and other useful stuff that girls talk about. The venue was warm and welcoming and I would definitely recommend this place for an after-work coffee meetup. I hope you enjoyed our second post in the Looks and Location Series. If you want us to explore any new venues or
have suggestions, then do let us know.
What better way to celebrate the great British summer sun than throwing a lavish garden party. The summer sun invites you to embrace the outdoors and entertain outside. If you follow my blog regularly, you would know that I hosted a garden party on my blog’s first anniversary. The theme was blue and white vintage tea party. You can read all about it in my previous post here. Here are some pictures from that party.
This year we got a new deck in our garden. Since our house is on a higher level, access to the garden was uneven and with two young kids, I wanted an easy access to the garden. One option was to get a full blown extension done but it was an expensive choice so we opted for a new deck. Now that we have the deck and an easy access to our garden, it has enhanced our experience of being outdoors.
Few weeks back, I hosted an intimate family get together. On this occasion I fully utilised our deck space. I had a garden table where I created the main decorative set up. The central focus of this set up was the flower arrangement. The theme was woodland decor and the flower arrangement fully complemented the theme. Normally for table set ups, I use bouquets but this time I tried something different and it seemed to work fine. The key thing to remember when setting up a party table is to integrate food into your decor. It’s not always easy to integrate food but try using finger foods as decor objects. For my arrangements, I used biscuits, salads and bread sticks as decor pieces.
During summers we have light till 9 pm but most of my garden parties continue beyond that so I used pontoon lights in the background. You can also use fairy lights and lace curtains as your backdrop to create a vintage look and feel.
I hope you enjoyed reading the post and got to see some new decor ideas for your next garden party. If you would like to see more decor-related blog posts, then let me know.
Planning your little girl’s birthday party? I have a decor project to share with you. Few months back I planned my daughter’s 5th birthday party. Organising a birthday party these days is a massive project in itself. I remember when we were kids, birthday parties were just about getting together with friends at home and eating some good food. Things have changed a bit for this generation and now it is all about entertaining the kids and keeping them occupied.
Organising a party is a time-consuming task but what I love the most about it is decorating the space. Creating a beautiful space gives me an adrenaline rush and I love bringing my ideas to reality. On the blog today I am sharing some decor images from my little girl’s party. The venue was the basement of a pub and that’s why the lighting is bit dark. In my décor, I have used my existing collectables. The cake was a big part of my decor and complemented the vintage bird cage. I used silk flower accessories to add freshness to the table. As you know, kids parties always start on time and I had only an hour or so to bring this vision to life. I couldn’t do a few things which I wanted to but I hope you enjoy the photo story below. Here are some quick tips which I have learnt from my experience
1. Ask for help – I am sure we all multitask and think we can manage on our own but trust me if you want to bring your decor vision to life, you would need additional pair for hands.
2. Draw a rough plan of the room/space and mark out how you want areas to be decorated.
3. Buy your party supplies few weeks in advance so that you don’t have to do any last-minute shopping.
4. Enjoy with your kids and their friends. This one is the most important.
Christmas has arrived at The Red Notebook HQ in London. My last weekend was spent sorting out old Christmas decor and chucking away loads of rubbish. We also managed to make space for our lovely tree in the living room. So finally, we welcomed the festive spirit in full glory.
Browsing local flea markets and high street shops fuels my decor inspiration. Every year it starts to feel a little festive for me once I start working on decor ideas. So this year we have a red and white festive theme. Irrespective of the space you have, you can go full out to adorn your abode with festive decor. Today I am sharing some very simple decor ideas that I worked on this year to welcome the spirit of Christmas.
Festive garland on the mantelpiece
Decorating your mantelpiece can immediately bring some festive warmth to your living space. Decorate your mantelpiece with festive garland and tea lights this Christmas. I bought this one from Christmas markets at Muswell Hill. Your local Christmas markets are full of festive inspirations and unique ideas – do pay them a visit.
Use a festive table cloth
Set the table for an unforgettable Christmas lunch/dinner using a festive table cloth. It’s also the time when your dining table will be used the most. So show some extra love by decorating it with festive table cloth and coasters.
Cake stand and Candles as a centerpiece
Cake stands are very versatile. You can use them to serve food or even as a table centrepiece. I have used my cake stand with a pillar candle and a small berry wreath to create a beautiful centrepiece.
The Red Notebook had a great 2016 and I would like to thank all my lovely readers and followers for following our fashion and style journey. I hope we managed to add some fashion fun to your everyday life. Wishing you all a very happy holiday season.
Recycling my Christmas decor blog post from last year. Put on your creative hat and take inspiration from simple decor ideas.
Display 1- DIY Christmas Candles
Just take white pillar candles, cinnamon sticks and rope string to create this candle display. Stick cinnamon sticks around the candle and decorate it with a rustic rope string. I used this beautiful sliver tray to place the candle display and scatter pines cones around.
Display 2- Cute Snow Globes
Beautiful display and very easy to create. Just get some glittery snow from ebay, empty glass jars from your kitchen and small decorative Christmas tree. Fix the tree to the centre of the lid, fill the jar with glitter snow and invert it. Make sure the glitter snow sticks to the jar – essential for achieving that snowy look . You can make it your centre table display, sideboard display or side table display like I have done here.
Display 3- Festive Christmas Crate
This is my favourite display. A very rustic and vintage display for your dinner table. I bought this vintage wooden crate from a local high street shop. Surprisingly I always manage to find some amazing artefacts from my local charity and other high street shops. They never disappoint me. Place glass jars with tea lights in the centre, fill the crate with green Christmas garlands, red berry decorations, cinnamon sticks and pine cones. For finishing touches, adorn the display with cute little red bows. Sit back, relax and let others appreciate you hard work.
Display 4- DIY Festive Garland
I get instant satisfaction from creating home made things. It feeds my creative energy and allows me to experiment with my styling ideas.
To create this beautiful Christmas garland, get hold of big decorative stars, festive figurine and rustic rope. Tie the decoration together on the rustic rope and decorate with red bows. You can hang this festive garland on the mantelpiece like I have done it here or hang it on sideboards or radiator covers.
Hope you got some decor ideas to add sparkle to your home this Christmas. Don’t forget to share your stories and ideas here with me.
Hope you all had a lovely time this Diwali. Now that the festival is over, all we are left with are the messed-up Rangolis, melted tea light candles and leftover sweets. Snippets of your home remind you of the festive time you had with your loved ones. I love the excitement and the whole run up to Diwali. Sorting out my festive wardrobe and thinking about Diwali decor really gets my creative juices flowing. Living in London where I have limited access to resources does limit me from going full out, but I do try and work around my limitations.
Diwali is my favourite festival and I have fond memories of this festival as a child. As a mum I would like to give my kids the same memories. Being a working mum of two young kids, I find it challenging to balance everything – work, home, kids and my blog. But I guess I get a kick from doing what I am doing and I am passionate about it. I just about manage it all and carry on. Enough on the story of my life, let’s focus on some festive decor inspiration.
This is how I decorated my place for Diwali. Hope you enjoy my picture story here.
Diwali Table Decor
This arrangement is very easy to create. Simply use a neutral table runner and adorn it with silver and copper accessories. To give final touches, sprinkle some rose petals and your Diwali table is ready.
I used some Rangoli stencils (got them from India) to create patterns on the floor.
Diwali Sweets Table
Diwali sweets is the biggest attraction for everyone. Right from the little ones to the big kids. We all love mithai. This Diwali I tried to use cake stands and glass boxes to create a mithai centrepiece. I have to tell you it was difficult to keep my kids off from this centrepiece and take a picture before the sweets disappeared.
Diwali Rangoli Pattern
I have a wooden floor at my place so usually my rangoli pattern would look very dull. This time I used only one colour and did the outline with white which gave some contrast to the pattern. I also used golden tea light holders for decoration.
My Diwali Outfit
So finally, what I wore this Diwali. I wore this Afghani embroidery skirt from Nabeel. I used a traditional maang tikka (bought from Amrapali) to give my outfit a traditional look and my Zara necklace to still keep it modern. I tried to fuse modern and traditional into one look. I wore this skirt slightly differently from how I wore it last time. See how I wore it earlier here.
Hope you enjoyed my Diwali story here. In the next few weeks I’ll be sharing a lot more about winter and party fashion so stay tuned.
Good Earth is my best-loved Indian lifestyle store.Theyrecently launched their very first boutique in the royal city of Jaipur. Extending its legacy of luxury, the store is situated in the iconic Rajmahal Palace.
From designs that celebrate our culture to crafts with a whimsical yet contemporary language, Good Earth is Jaipur’s newest design destination. The new store finds form in three predominant themes – Tropical, Mughal and Indigo. In keeping with this, the products and moods across the store have been carefully curated by Good Earth for the discerning consumer.
It’s been a while since I did a blog post. Quite a few things were happening at my end and my work took a back seat. As you know I went to India for my brother’s wedding and after coming back, I just didn’t want to get back to a routine. I went into procrastination overload, where I kept on delaying tasks and other things I needed to sort out. Now from last week there has been a major shift in my lifestyle and I am slowly getting back to normal – which means working on my blog and other creative projects.
On the blog today I want to share my Holi lifestyle post. Holi, the festival of colours, is one of my favourite festivals. The concept of Holi is now very much popular in Europe. During summer, Holi music festivals are a big rage. Festival goers wear white and immerse themselves in a riot of colours.
Holi is spring time in India and weather is very pleasant. In UK however we don’t have any such weather luxuries. I remember once it even snowed in London on Holi but we still went outside to play. Even though it was windy, dark and grey but our spirits were high.
Here are some pictures of the decor I did outside in my back garden. I did the decor a day before when It was sunny. Next day, due to high winds most of my streamers couldn’t bare the ballistic winds. I kept the theme yellow and pink, used streamers, paper pompoms to create a Holi setting.