May 25, 2016

#ShaadiSeries : Mehendi-ed

I had a difficult time zeroing in on a lot of vendors that I had needed help from during my wedding and finding the right Mehendi artist was one of them. I have a full figure body and naturally my hands are quite big which according to a lot of mehendi artists are a gold mine for them as they provide a bigger canvas to draw various complex and ornate designs. So when a friend suggested a mehendi artist to me, I got in touch with her and we sat down to brainstorm a few Mehendi designs that she could use for me. Let me divulge the readers in a little background here.

In Indian traditions, applying mehendi or henna is embraced as the most ornamental way of getting yourself ready for an occasion. No matter how big or small the festivity, there is an inlaid compulsion for the women in the household to get their hands and feet tattooed with henna. Like all other arts, Mehendi too has evolved a great deal over the years. In earlier days, women plucked out the leaves off of the mehendi plant and ground them into a paste and applied it onto their palms and feet in simple round designs. As the tradition furthered, mehendi came to be ground even finer, put into plastic or polythene cones and was applied on the hand in the form of elaborate designs. Over the years, mehendi cones have been selling commercially in stores all over the country and even abroad where the trend of temporary henna tattoos has really caught on. Mehendi designs too have evolved over this time, from basic traditional to modern contemporary designs like Arabic design.

So there we sat pondering over Mehendi Designs and I came across this mobile application called Ethnico. It was amazing as it had a plethora of ideas I could use for my own wedding mehendi application. We also found a lot of design inspirations for the rest of my family who had mehendi applied both in Arabic Style and Traditional. I selected a few designs that were my favorite from the list and I think anyone who is looking at getting bridal mehendi applied must consider these designs:

1. This ornate Leg Mehendi

​2. This beautiful Bridal Mehendi with incorporations like the Bride, Groom, Shehnai and the Palanquin in the Mehendi. I eventually ended up getting mehendi applied very similar to this one.

3. Basic Arabic Mehendi Designs like this one

There I had it, my problem well taken care of by this really resourceful website that I came across. I recommend the Ethnico app to anyone who is looking for traditional Indian design inspirations. Head over to their website or download their app. I am sure you will not be disappointed.

May 9, 2016

Quiet and Fierce - Chandana Munipalle

It was in the aftermath of a major photography drought I went through that I conjured this project in my head where I photograph the prominent bloggers in Hyderabad city. Though the number is quite small, this little but significant community of bloggers is the one to look out for. In my series of meeting and photographing these amazingly talented and beautiful women, I will be talking about them and what drives them to do what they are doing now. And the first of these women is 'The Girl at First Avenue' Chandana Munipalle

At first glance, Chandana will bowl you over, with her quiet demeanour. As you get to know her, spend more time with her what will hit you more clearly about her personality is her perseverance. Chandana decided to become a fashion blogger at a time when fashion blogging was still in its nascent stages. People hardly understood the What, When and How of the industry, let alone understand the nuances of fashion blogging. Over the years, she has made the mark for herself as a blogger who is fierce and selective about her choices and true to her passion. My obsession with using the word 'fierce' to describe her comes from her sheer grit and honesty to what she does. If there is a prospective campaign she feels creatively unchallenged by, she will not take it. Such is her passion. We spent a good few hours mulling over the sad state of fashion blogging now, especially in Hyderabad. With numbers not entirely being true determinants of influence, both Chandana and I felt that there needs to a be a major transition in the fashion blogging scene so as to engage more audience and create more creative content.

If you have never read her blog, you must read now. You will find it hard to miss her style and how she weaves a story in a post. My personal favourite is this post on Charminar 'Citystories'
If you are looking for inspiration and some brilliant creative content, follow Chandana and her blog