Festive Hues – By Sue Mue

“How do you guys work together being friends..is it hard?”

If I had a rupee for the number of times we get asked this question, well let’s just say we would have a whole lot of rupees.

It is rather unorthodox I suppose, successfully and amiably being able to work with ones best friend without a calamity and we do know and appreciate how fortunate we are.  And to tell you the truth, we wouldn’t want it any other way.

 

Disclaimer: But do not attempt this feat unless you are absolutely certain that you and the best friend in question can perfectly balance each other out or else you run the risk of destroying a business and a friendship in one fell move.

In any relationship, it’s not how you feel about the other person as much as it is about how the other person makes you feel about yourself. With SU as my business partner and best-friend, I feel I can accomplish just about anything because there is nothing we cannot do if we put our minds together.

In this story, we are both wearing garments from SUE MUE’s Ariella Collection. This brand is based out of Delhi and specializes in Bespoke and fusion wear. The silhouettes are exquisitely Indian at heart and yet have a cosmopolitan spirit, making them an ideal pick for the women of today. Their dainty ensembles have set some serious Bridesmaids and bridal goals in our minds! What we adore about Sue Mue’s collection is, that they are customised straight from the heart. With this, we are prepared to take this festive season by storm!

Our upcoming challenge – juggling SU’s wedding planning and an avalanche of projects that we just couldn’t turn down. The role of Bridesmaid is one we take very seriously, especially during the couple of months leading up to the wedding when sh*t starts to get real. I remember before my own wedding,; the numerous times I began to sink under the pressure and SU would always be there to throw me a lifeline and drag me up to the surface for cookies and ice-cream.

When I walked in to Tote for my wedding ceremony and found my décor colours had suddenly changed at the last minute, because my father decided to get creative early that morning, I felt like I was about to lose my mind when SU grabbed my hand and told me very firmly “ Calm the hell down, it’s your wedding day and nobody will know the flowers were supposed to be white”. Those matronly words may just have saved my wedding for me because after that I was as calm as a monk and I felt invincible.

There is no such thing as a perfect, hitch free wedding and that’s the beauty of it because there is no perfect, hitch free relationship. The good and the bad are both important because without one, the other cannot exist.  Having said that I pray SU’s wedding is the wedding of her dreams and I will strive to help make it so.

 

 

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Un-Perfect

I am in a profound thoughts kind of mood today and in the midst of my meandering thoughts, I fell upon an idea I suppose has always been there but hadn’t yet come to light for me. Perfection is terribly over rated and it just does not exist. How can it ?

Our obsession with perfection dates back centuries, I mean the French were so obsessed with it that in the 18th century; men and women alike took to powdering their faces ghost white and wearing horribly uncomfortable wigs utop their heads.

Women especially fall victim to the siren call of attaining perfection. We have suffered through rib crushing corsets for the perfect waist, bone breaking shoes for the perfect foot size, starvation for the perfect weight and elaborate procedures for the perfect skin and hair….. And the forces that dictate the rules of perfection are ever adding to the list making regular women feel constantly inadequate.

I have had enough and I refuse to step out of my comfort zone to fit into some mould of someone else’s making. I just want to be MI.

In order to celebrate my revelation, I turn to the brand, which represents a person who isn’t bound by oppressive rules of perfection. They look for comfort, self-expression and quality in their wardrobe. I created two looks, both of which I rarely do in real life but have grown to love after this.

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I was always afraid of Boyfriend jeans because of my height but found the perfect pair at Benetton. Top that off with a feminine blouse and a jacket and you have casual chic down!

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My usual Idea of sporty chic is more structural but I tried something more laid back and girly here with a red sporty dress and matching sneakers.

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So I say, strive for improvement not for perfection.

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Phorography-Mrinmai Parab

ON MI
Outfits-Benetton
Sunglasses-Rayban
Sneakers-Adidas

 

 

MISU goes to Pushkar

When I travel I feel I get awfully greedy. I want to see it all, do it all… devour the culture and absorb the essence of the place I am in. When SU and I arrived in Pushkar, I wished I had 100 eyes so I wouldn’t miss an inch of its vibrant and energetic landscape.

For those of you who do not know, Pushkar is a small, enchanting city about 3 hours from Jaipur. It plays host to the only sacred Brahma Temple in the country (dating back to the 14th century) and has quite an exquisite view of the lush Aravali Hills.

 

SU and I both have very similar travel tendencies; we like to get out and do things because you can only truly experience the place you are visiting by imbedding yourself right into the heart of the place.

Having said that, when a resort is as all encompassing and exquisite as the Westin Pushkar Resort and Spa, you may be easily convinced to just stay put.

The resort is an Oasis of comfort , luxury and activities to suit all ages, moods and desires.

The property boasts 80 sprawling villas and 18 Deluxe rooms so if you want your very on private pool… you can have it. And you know what the best part of having your own private en suite pool is?

A floating breakfast delivered to you while you bob about in the cool blue water. You can follow this with a massage in your villa or at their Heavenly Spa where you can further indulge in a hearty steam or dip in the hot tub.

 

If you aren’t in the spa mood just yet, the property also has its own theater so you can curl up on a lazy boy with a blanket and catch a movie.

In order to makeup for a morning of inactivity, we decided to get a hold a of a couple of bicycles (made available by the resort) and see if its true what they say about never forgetting how to ride a bike. Turns out, its not quite accurate because SU has definitely forgotten how but with a little practice, anything is possible.

Activity leads to hunger and our feet led us to the Seasonal Tastes restaurant. Their Rajasthani fare was especially good but they also have lighter fare available for those less adventurous.

 

Their main hotel pool is seriously a sight to behold and got us thinking of what a glorious location this would make for a destination wedding.

They have created gorgeous, dedicated indoor and outdoor spaces for this very reason. They even have a wicked bar with a downstairs room for those post event after party’s.

I have to admit though, from all the wonderful attributes at this resort, my favorite of all was the hospitality and my bed. I know it sounds absolutely mad but if you have ever had the chance to plunge into a Westin Heavenly Bed, you know how divine those things are. Its a bed which hugs you back.

These 3 nights at the Westin Resort and Spa in Pushkar taught me that sometimes its alright to slow down and just BE. After just one day it began to feel like home and that is what makes a resort a true success in our opinion.

 

 

Read more about the Westin Resort and Spa in Pushkar here 

 

Smells Ring Bells with Jo Malone London

Have you ever got a sudden whiff of something and been instantaneously transported back into a memory.  This is called Olfactory Memory and happens to be one of my personal favorite memory triggers.

A whiff of some body’s perfume makes you think of a trip you took as a child and your mum’s sun tan lotion smelled heavenly as it merged with the salty, briny scent of the beach.

Or you smell something and it grabs hold of your heart without you being able to fathom why. Gosh I love the power a scent can have and if wielded intelligently, that very same power can be harnessed for your gain.

 

This is why we are so happy Jo Malone is finally setting up shop in our city.  Their ability to harness and manipulate scent goes un challenged because only they can re imagine a smell as fresh and fine as that of a humble blackberry can be molded into something magnificent for your body or your home.

They teach us the magic layering scents can create for the wearer as well as for those who breathe in the wearers aura.

It’s a way of creating a one of a kind bespoke scent which lasts longer and rings out when you enter a room.

 

MI’s Favourite Scent Combo- Myrrh and Tonka with Wood Sage and Sea Salt

SU’s Favourite Scent Combo -Myrrh and Tonka with  peony and blush suede

Su Casa X Discern Living

Getting married, moving homes and leaving your cat. Three very difficult and distinct things that many women, and I, have come face to face with. I did all three of these things in one year and to be honest, it wasn’t all rainbows and butterflies. When we see big changes ahead of us, we try to look at the positives and ignore the fact that change is not always easy. Getting married has to be one of the most incredible things I’ve done in my life and I wouldn’t change this for the world. However, along with marriage comes compromise. And lots of it!

I had grown up living in a tight knit family and leaving this behind was not going to be easy. The blow of this was made much, much softer when Arnav and I decided to redecorate his bachelor pad, studio flat to make it more representative of us and where we were in life. Unfortunately, with both our work schedules being incredibly busy, we found it becoming nearly impossible to actually sit down and get the work started. Whether it was choosing tiles or picking wall paint, things were beginning to take a chaotic turn.

Like a light at the end of a tunnel, a friend of mine introduced us to Discern Living, and just like that, things started falling in to place! Imagine an interior designer being a genie whose sole job is to help and guide you through the decorating process and ensuring that every wish and desire of yours is granted. This is exactly what Discern Living became for me. The process was fairly simple and much less painful than what I imagined redecorating could be.

Arnav and I took a style quiz on the Discern Living App (Download the App here iOS: http://apple.co/2nmsYKD Google Play: http://bit.ly/2mavd3l) so that they got to know us a little better and began to understand our aesthetic and  sense of design. As it turns out, #ArSu is all about Modern Glamour! We then sent them images of our existing space along with a few basic details like our budget, which pieces of the original décor we wanted to keep, references of things we liked, etc. After this, they sent across a presentation of what our new space would look like along with a mood board for us to understand the overall look and feel.

There was a little bit of back and forth here where we added and subtracted a few things to come up with the perfect space for Arnav and I. The Discern Living team then sent us a 3D rendering of what they envisioned our studio apartment would look like once we put all the products they recommended, together. It was amazing – I’ve never seen anything like it! You can instantly visualise what your new home will look like, with almost no hassle at all. The rendering that the Discern Design team shared came with a shopping list which was all linked to their app, so purchasing the products we finalised on was literally as easy as clicking a button. For all those micro-managers out there (myself included), you are also given the option of visiting the vendors and seeing your pieces in real life, if you prefer a touch-and-feel experience over buying sight unseen.

This entire process took only two weeks and cost a flat fee of INR 20,000; a fraction of what any other interior designer would have charged. In another few days we had our studio apartment completely redesigned! We were able to get some fantastic pieces without having to run from shop to shop and haggle over design fees and aesthetics. I must say that for young professionals like us, this app is a blessing! I would recommend Discern Living to anyone who is looking to renovate or design a space or home. The company uses technology to make the process so simple without losing any of the personalisation and care that comes with a human touch. It really is a wonderful thing to be able to live with someone you love, in a place that feels like home (with or without your cat).

Visit the Website here-

http://www.discernliving.com/

Download the App here –

iOS: http://apple.co/2nmsYKD

Google Play: http://bit.ly/2mavd3l

Fluid Fashion with Aarsim

Water never waits; it changes shape and flows around its obstacles.  It finds secret paths, which no one else had, even conceived- like a tiny hole through on a roof or a crack in a wall.

There is do doubt that it is the most versatile of all the four elements. It can wash away earth and put out fire, it can wear a piece of metal down and sweep it away like it was nothing. Even wood cannot survive with a drink of water.

That’s the kind of power we strive for, the soft, determined strength of water which never stops and even when there is a draught, it exists in the atmosphere waiting and biding its time till it can be unleashed again.

This essence can be imbued into anything you do and we found some of it in Aarsim, a hand bag brand founded in 2006 which has swept across India while staying fluid enough to be able to cater to the varied tastes of the modern day woman.

These impeccably crafted bags are a force unto themselves and serve a utilitarian as well as an aesthetic function. T

he perfect balance between pretty, statement and tasteful.

 

In Mumbai, they stock:

Ensemble Bandra

Mogra

Kashish infiore

TAKING THE PLUNGE – At ATLANTIS THE PALM

In association with RockNshopWith our wedding slowly creeping up on us, the fiancé and I decided we needed some true relaxation with a sprinkle of Vitamin Sea before all the wedding chaos begins.

With both our hectic schedules and work commitments we had to choose someplace easy to get to without sacrificing on all the bells and whistles.  After much deliberation we decided that a weekend away at the Atlantis, The Palm Palm Atlantis in Dubai would be the ideal choice.

A short flight later, in what’s otherwise referred to as a desert region, we found ourselves in an underwater kingdom , unlike anything that I had ever seen before. The stunning property takes your breath away.

My dreams of being little mermaid were coming true and there was no Ursula around to dampen my Sprits .

The hotel is made  such that you don’t need to step out for anything, your every whim and desire can be made available to you within the property. As a self proclaimed water baby, the larger than life aquarium based on the lost city of Atlantis left me mesmerized and it took some self control to keep from immediately jumping in, shoes bag and all.

The entire hotel emanates this theme with divine seashell carvings on the walls. Like excited little kids we decided that the water park aqua adventure would be our first stop.

My soon to be Husband is a bit of an adventure junkie so we decided that zip lining 20 meters up in the air was the best way to start our trip and the Atlantis boasts the longest zip line in the Middle East. I decided that if I was taking one Leap Of Faith ( by getting married ) I would take another on the world’s largest water slide-  The Tower of Poseidon .

After a thrilling afternoon, it was time to soak in the sun and immerse ourselves in the Royal pool where you can enjoy the stunning Marina Skyline while sipping on your choice of delicious drinks.

At the end of a productive day, we couldn’t wait for a slower paced date night and our options were phenomenal – like Nobu , Ossiano and Ayamna all part of Atlantis.

We went with Ayamna  it’s gorgeous staircase and monochrome background made me feel like a princess walking down to meet my prince . It was one of the best Lebanese restaurants I’ve eaten at so far. Their Apricot Muhalabiya, which is made with luscious cream and nuts, should not be missed.

With impeccable service and delicious food, our week end was turning out more fabulous than we could have imagined

We Kick started the next morning  with a personal training session to burn of the calories of the meal the night before followed by a relaxing massage at the ShuiQi Spa that helped us relax our mind and body for the hectic months ahead .

The Royal Bridge Suite  is the crowning glory of the hotel and we had the opportunity to do a mini pre wedding shoot up on its iconic Terrace.

We fell in love with it. With the clear blue skies and the beautiful Arabian gulf setting the scene, we couldn’t have asked for better canvas.

The suite boasts sun terraces that span three sides of the building, private dinners cooked by the chefs.

Leaving the Atlantis with a great tan, an energized mind and a relaxed body. I can’t wait to start my next adventure as MRS Summiyya  Arnav Shah.

 

Location – ATLANTIS THE PALM, DUBAI

Outfits – RockNshop

Photography – Rahul Jhangiani