Tag Archives: DIY

Celebrating Ganesha’s Arrival with Art

Ganesha Chaturthi is around the corner. The festival of welcoming the elephant God home is celebrated in most parts of India and is especially popular among the people residing on the west coast of the Indian subcontinent.

It is a 10 day long festival, during which Lord Ganesha, the God of wisdom and prosperity, is welcomed to various households. After worshipping his idols for these 10 days, starting with Ganesha Chaturthi, the idols are immersed in water bodies, symbolic that the elephant God fills the house with happiness and prosperity, and takes away all the negativity with Him, only to come back the next year, with the same fervour and the same purpose.

As the air is imbued with the excitement around Ganapati celebrations, the media is already abuzz with articles related to the festival, the best pandal (Read: temporary shrine) in town, the best place to get modaks (Ganesha’s favourite sweet) to offer to Lord Ganesha, the new eco-friendly Ganesha statue, the best Ganesha sand art, Ganapati Goodies, and the list is endless.

While some people around the world find different ways to impress the Lord of Good beginnings and others try to take business advantage from the current buzz around Ganapati celebrations, I express my love and devotion to my favourite Lord through this simple, yet close to my heart painting.

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Being an ardent deity of Ganapati, His painting was the first that I made when I picked the paintbrush after years (may be only after the school art classes). This painting is extremely special to me and beautifies one of the walls of the Pooja (Read Prayer) room of my house.

Hope you like this!

The Henna of Celebrations

In India, the festive and wedding seasons are around the corner and so is the time for celebrations. And the word celebrations brings with it fun, entertainment, food, dancing, singing, culture specific traditions and rituals, dressing up, decorations, and above all thanking God for all the positivity around with lots of offerings in the form of prayers and fasting. I am sure to have left out a long list of things that are an integral part of Indian traditions apart from the aforementioned ones.

But one thing I personally love and can never forget is the tradition of putting Henna (Mehendi) designs on hands and feet during all these celebrations. Be it weddings or festivals, henna forms an important part of celebrations in the culturally diverse land of India.

Tattooing henna designs is such a craze in India that during festive time a visit to even a local market would expose you to a number of henna artists ready to show their skills on your hands and feet for a charge, of course. In fact, it’s a windfall time for the henna artists around this time.

Even women and girls are near experts when it comes to henna tattooing in many households and can dye hands of family and friends in henna with panache and in no time.

People say that it’s very auspicious for women (even the grooms for their wedding day) to put henna on their hands and feet.

Though, putting henna on hands and feet of women has religious link ups, many elders say that henna can change your fate lines and bring good luck. 🙂

Well, as I grew up I came to realize what it really meant when elders said about the fate changing qualities of henna. They say that our entire life’s fate is written in the lines of our hand and feet. Therefore, for me putting henna is nothing but a way of dyeing your hands and feet in beautiful designs and forgetting about all your troubles for those celebratory moments and enjoying them to the fullest.

It’s also a way of distressing and taking a break from the humdrum tasks (especially during festivities), I believe. The gorgeous designs and the fragrance of henna are relaxing for many. The comparison among girls about whose henna design is the darkest and whose husband loves her most, is a common humour related to henna tattooing among Indian women.

As a kid I remember being super excited around the festive season because Mom would put a new henna pattern on my hands. As we grew up, I and my sisters took to making some henna designs after imitating from magazines and now the Internet. 🙂

I love doing henna designs myself. 🙂 Here are a couple of designs I made for some festivals last year and desperately waiting for this year’s festivals to get down to some henna tattooing.

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I know these aren’t the best and there are people who are much better at this. But the idea was to rev up the festive fervour and bring in some feel of celebrations.

Hope you liked reading! 🙂

Art and Emotions in One Frame

A few days back, when I was busy completing yet another craft project, my mom came up to me and stretched out her hand to give me something and said, ‘Can you make something for this?’ On realizing what she was handing over to me, my eyes welled up with tears. It was mom and dad’s first photograph after marriage.

They had kept it preserved since 1965 and gleefully narrated the day they had gone to get the picture clicked at a famous studio in Connaught Place, Delhi (India). A few days after their wedding mom and dad went to get their first professionally clicked photograph as a couple. On that day, dad adorned his favorite black suit and mom wore a pretty orange sari, along with her wedding jewelry. I love this photograph of mom and dad and till date we tell mom that they made for the most charming couple we have ever seen.

After we had refurnished the house some years back, the photograph had been taken off the photo frame and kept safely in a plastic wrap to make space for new show pieces and other family photos.

Ever since we lost dad a few years back, mom had very rarely mentioned to us about dad and how much she missed her life partner. That day when mom handed me the photograph felt as if she was asking me to help her revive and relive her long forgotten moments and feel dad’s presence in her life.

I could not have let go of a chance to get some positive vibes to mom’s life and especially when she was the one keen on that. That’s when I decided to make a photo frame for the picture, rather than purchasing one.

Some online tutorials and my creativity helped me create a lovely cardboard photo frame to fit my favorite photograph. I added to its beauty by using quilling art and some Fevicryl Golden Glitter Glue to decorate it.

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I was the most satisfied when the best feedback for the picture frame came from mom when she said, ‘tune to char chand laga diye humari photo par’ (An idiom used in Hindi to tell that a thing looks prettier that before).

The Photo in its frame sits beautifully on a showcase in the living room of my house and usually gets an appreciative notice from the guests.

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Hope you like this.

First 500 Likes!

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Its just been a little under two months when I published my first post on ‘A Homemaker’s World’ and I proudly mention the first 500 likes on my blog.

Thank you all for appreciating and encouraging me with your compliments every time I post on the blog.

This means a lot to me and will definitely take my zest for writing more interesting posts and articles one step ahead.

Hugs!!

Extending My Best Wishes via Hand Painted Gift Tags

I keep taking up a lot of art and craft projects to make something new and useful for my home and loved ones and most often use handmade paper as the base. Since the paper does not get used entirely, I am left with lots of pieces of handmade paper, big and small.

Handmade paper forms a raw yet colourful and ‘no-so-plain’ background for the art piece as well as gives sturdiness to the final product, making it last longer. Broadly, it makes for a perfect base to portray my creativity with colours and the paintbrush.

My sheer adoration for the paper makes me think of new ways to creatively utilize the leftover pieces.

The idea of making Gift Tags or Congratulatory Message Cards on Gifts popped up in my mind and I started my new craft DIY project. 🙂

Method:

  • Cut the paper into equal rectangular shapes, which forms the basic shape for the gift tag
    • You can take any shape you prefer, i.e. diamond, circular, oval or square, but make sure that there is enough space on the paper to decorate as well as write a congratulatory message 🙂
  • You can start by making a rough sketch/drawing of the design/shape you wish to put on the gift tag
    • If you are an expert artist, skip this step and straight away start making the desired design using colours, paintbrush and some marker pens
    • I prefer to draw with a pencil before starting to add colours 🙂
  • You could make occasion specific drawings/designs
    • For example, a pram for a baby shower gift tag; a bouquet for multiple occasions; conical caps, cakes and confetti for birthday gifts; and paisley prints for Indian occasions and other celebrations, Ganesha/Swastik/Lakshmi ji’s feet for Diwali gift tags

Here is a look at the first set of gift tags I painted and used these for conveying my best wishes to loved ones. There is no better feeling in the world than gifting something handmade. The recipient treasures it for a lifetime and you can’t imagine how carefully preserved your handmade gift will be kept. I have seen this in my family and always get encouraged for making more handmade stuff.

Handpainted Gift Tags

Handmade Gift Tags/Congratulatory Message Cards for Gifts

Gift Tag Ganesha

Ganesha Gift Tag for an Indian Celebration/Festival like Diwali/Marriage/Housewarming Gift

Alternately, just like many people use occasion based flags for inserting in cakes, I made a sort of miniature placard by pasting a toothpick at the back to make a ‘Happy Birthday Mummy’ card for placing on my mom’s birthday cake.

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Gift Tag Used as a Miniature Placard/Flag for Cake

Hope you like these 🙂

Icing on the Cake, Literally!!

Hi there!

This is in continuation to my post yesterday, wherein I shared the recipe for making an Eggless Chocolate Cake and all my hard work paid off when the resulting cake was fabulously fluffed and spongy.

The whiff in the air that a freshly baked cake leaves is absolutely irresistible. I just always want to cut the warm cake into slices, put some Hershey’s chocolate sauce and roasted nuts and eat it to get that melt-in-the-mouth feeling….mmmmm..:)

But, I had different plans that required the entire cake to be ‘saved’ and put aside to be cooled down. Then I started making the frosting for the cake.

As some of us were discussing yesterday, patience is the key to the frosting part, be it waiting for the cake to cool down to giving the final touches while icing the cake (an attempt to make a neatly wrapped delicious looking cake :)).

Usually I use a chocolate butter cream frosting for all my cakes because everyone at my home loves chocolate like mad ;). But this time I wished to make a contrasting frosting, as in white on chocolate brown, to make it look visually more appealing. I personally love the look of the white vanilla frosting placed neatly in the layers of the chocolate cake when sliced. 🙂

The final look of my vanilla butter cream frosting wrapped eggless chocolate cake (wow…sounds to tempting) is here for you. After wrapping this cake in the frosting, I dusted some grated Dairy Milk Chocolate on the top and sides of the cake and then to give a little colour to the too plain look of the cake, I decorated it with some Cadbury Gems on the circumference.

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Vanilla Buttercream Frosting on Eggless Chocolate Cake

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Vanilla Buttercream Frosting on Eggless Chocolate Cake

And for those of you who wished to see the sponginess of the cake from the inside, here’s the pic of the sliced cake. The contrasting frosting sits pretty in between the layers, making me happy with the final outcome.

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Yummy….Lip smacking 😉

Hope you like this.

For more visit my page Cakes with a Green Dot

You can also follow me on Pinterest and Twitter

Ocean Stone Painting: Creativity and Beyond

My love for experimenting with colors took a new path when I decided to do some pebble painting. Here in Delhi, it’s easier to find piles of bricks ready to build huge bungalows and mansions, but finding one pebble is quite an impossible task.

My eyes kept searching at various places for those oval pebbles, which could be painted and set around that Ganesha idol in my living room, further enhancing the beauty of the idol of the Lord of new beginnings. That was the idea I initially had for my living room decor.

Unfortunately or fortunately, I could not find the desired pebbles and rather on searching around the garden area of my own house I found hidden treasures from my father’s gardening days. These were some relatively big, beautiful, oval shaped ocean stones, which dad had collected especially for decorating around the earthen flower pots in our house. How had I not seen them till now!

Perfect for making a beautiful centerpiece for a table, I painted one of the stones all green. On that, I painted a beautiful feather in yellow outlined with golden paint on one side and a simple abstract design in gold on the other. This made it a perfect, reversible centerpiece for the lobby table.

Feather painted on stone

Painted Ocean Stone

I placed the stone in a flat China vase and surrounded it with green marbles.

painted stone in china pot

Painted Stone as a Centerpiece in Flat China Vase Surrounded with Green Marbles

reverse of the stone

Reverse of the Ocean Stone Painted with Abstract Design

The painted stone at the center of the house signifies strong foundation and stability, while the green marble spheres are a symbol of constant movement and entry of positive energy in the house. The color green itself signifies hope, harmony and good atmosphere around the house.

So much said, I found a way to display my talent and make a lovely decorative piece for my home. It came at a precious price of patience and creativity added up together. 🙂

Hope you like this.