Weekly Vibes: Life-changers This Week!

This one’s a killer way to tell you what I buy, why I buy, what makes them work, what makes me waste some good monies on things that don’t need their due and ones that makes me go waaaw (that’s the South-Indian wow!). Hello, am a serial buyer of hipster-and-otherwise things and I plead guilty to Instagram-ing them repeatedly to get your attention. Every week I will tell you what makes something work for me, or not. This week’s stuff is here!

BEAUTY

#1: Clinique Pep Start 2-in-1 Exfoliating Cleanser

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ok now, I got bullied into buying it at Sephora. I bought my all-time favourite Clinique Moisture Surge and this was just added by the salesgirl saying, try it. Not free, mind you, I bought it. Fine, I bought it because of that stark pink packaging, okay? OK! But still. From the house that gave me my best moisturiser and my favourite toner, this HAS to work. But no, I wouldn’t say it didn’t work but I saw no visible results. No crazy glow, no OMG clarity in skin. It just did it’s job of washing. *insert saddest smiley. I am on the fence on this. No breakouts, no bad vibes. Just okay-ish. With all the “epic” and “awesome” and “mind-effing-blowing tags everywhere, this seems bland. Thank god it was 750 bucks – travel size, if I spent a bomb, I would have straight lost my shit.

Verdict: Nopes, not for me! I might try the eye cream though, from what I hear, that’s the shizz!

DESSERT

#2: Lindt Excellence Caramel & Seasalt Chocolate Bar

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The ONLY chocolate you need. It’s a staple in our home. The fridge is never without it and I think it’s a tad too expensive but worth every penny. Not available officially but duty-free has some great offers. I bought it at Le Marche for Rs 399 bucks.

Verdict: On a scale of bliss to hell, I’ll go for #supereffingawesomeness.

DRINK

#3: Soju

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Living near Korean-restaurant-infested Gurgaon malls means only one thing – Korean Supermarkets filled with nori sheets and what not. The husband and me are completely trying out newer cuisines and ingredients. Today, we got Soju – the trademark drink. Case in point – HiteJinro’s many varieties of soju, especially Chamisul, which is Korea’s best-selling brand. It tasted like Gin to me and went well with the home-made biryani.

Verdict: Require more to finally make decision. It’s strong, I’ll say that.

FASHION

#4: Label Life Block Heels

These suede block heels have been on my list for a while. Label Life has come a long way as a brand. It had okay-ish collections when it started out but honestly, it’s now my number one place to buy stuff. That’s because it has clean, minimalistic fare and of course, work wear that’s kickass. Yep, it’s a bit on the expensive side but it’s the fabric that makes it click. Fresh, plush and totally great. These block heels look great on dresses but currently, they are not as comfy as I thought they would be.

Verdict: I will still buy. Colour = check. Material = check. Heel = I am determined to check. Maybe a few more wears.

FOOD

#5: Burger Singh Burgers

If there’s one thing I did the moment I landed my ass in Gurgaon, it was to search for some great food places. And as I was talking by Golf Course Road, this name I saw sounded super funny. BURGER SINGH. And it also said they are open until 3 am. So we decided to check out the menu. Some really great options: The Amritsari Murgh was brilliant, the Malabar Chicken was super nice. I love it when they Indianise western food, because why not? The surprise one was the Punjabi Samosa burger, at Rs 100 it was yummers as hell. In Mumbai, we were crazy about this burger place called Serial Griller. It’s home-made and even sometimes delivered by the owner. The Burger Singh burgers are my Delhi-equivalent. The bun is so soft, you wanna make your bed in it and sleep!

Verdict: We already ordered 3 times from there and looks like it will stay on.

MUSIC

#6: Aarya on Apple Music

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This boy I tell you. This is one reason I love the fact that my husband introduces new music to me. This boy has the most velvety voice ever and some really cool songs. He reminds me of Jason Mraz. Maybe a bit of Jack Johnson. Also a masala of Ed Sheeren. But I really liked his music: Download here.  Particularly the songs, Mum & Dad (reminded me of mine so much!) and Wasted For Love.

Verdict: Yep, totes awesome and addictive!

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Handcrafted: Quirksmith, The Label That Takes Silver On A Whimsical Flight!

I used to be crazy about silver. In college, it was all about that Fab India kurta and oodles of oxidised silver. Always dull, always antique-y and probably a bit cliched also. But we hardly had any options when we were growing up – not so much social media really and no Insta trends and FB pages to ogle at.

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So we chose a few things that we saw: Posh – chic person, boho-whimsical person and ultra-traditional human. Everyone fell into these boxes and for those bordering on hippie-boho, silver jewellery was the uniform of sorts. But options for silver were very few. We had lots of jhumkas, a pair of anklets thrown in with some random meenakari work and of course, hoops (they were my fav!!!). Some girls wore semi-precious stones with their silver: amethyst, pearls, rubies and even opals. That was 1999.

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In 2017, the rules seem to have changed. There are so many homegrown labels that are outdoing one another like no man’s business and excelling at making that humble jhumka into an artefact with a POV. One among them that keeps cropping up on my radar is Quirksmith. I like the label for a variety of reasons.

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  1. They make affordable silver jewellery: The nose rings retail at Rs 600.
  2. They do inspirational words: I like the Aham Brahmasmi ear cuff.
  3. They are almost like modern weaponry. Warrior-like, rustic yet contemporary.
  4. They are all made in 92.5 silver. I like that it’s not sterling silver. (Sterling silver and zircons are the worst!)
  5. They have a new thing on the menu: Ear plugs and they’re gorgeous. *mental note: buy them!

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Started by Divya and Pragya – an NIFT ’04 grad with a specialisation in jewelry designing and an IIT Delhi and INSEAD graduate, this one’s got design and business going well for it. I even heard that Divya worked with Amrapali ( my fav store!) for a bit. Woohoo!

 

 

What should I buy? I am eyeing the ear cuffs with words on them. Definitely buy the ear plugs, they’re great for those who don’t have piercings. I like the sharp, warrior-like earrings with arrows, the “Nakhrewali” ring and those fun brooches. I might try the septum rings. My favourite piece has to be the Jugalbandi Nath. *mental note: wear more silver!

Well, so that’s Quirksmith for you and may it impress you.

Available here. Pricing starts at Rs 600. You might want to catch them at Lakme Fashion Week 2017 this time in Mumbai.
Date – 16-20 Aug
Place – St Regis

The Only Playlist Your Little Girl Needs!

Music isn’t my strong suit. I mainly go for pop, a bit of metal (that happens because of prolonged exposure to it by husband) and lots of Hindi/Tamil/Telugu stuff thrown in liberally. I own no genre, am loyal to no artiste. Except for those who are rocking the charts at the moment. With the exception of Dave Grohl, Beyonce, A.R. Rahman and Red Hot Chilli Peppers – these guys I will be happy to listen to at any given point in time. These are probably the only artistes I will see in concert I think.

Well, anyway, so when it came to my daughter, I naturally gave her my playlist with a healthy dose of Gaga, Beyonce, Taylor Swift and Meghan Trainor and she loved ’em. She even loves a good dose of Keeravani, Rahman and Arijit Singh – because we love all kinds at home. Infact, my best friend’s husband, let’s call him Sean, thought Meghan Trainor is a great role model especially when the girls (they have a 5 year old) get into their teens. The song “My name is No. My number is No” might just be their anthem when pock-marked teen boys approach them. #futuredating = check!

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The husband on the other hand uses his time to show her every damn freaking playlist and plays it to glory. Beatles, Megadeth, Rolling Stones, new indie bands, metal, jazz….blah blah blah. And she has her favourites!

Now, while there is music that we give her, there’s also music she finds. Yep, the 4 year old keeps jumping from video to video on YouTube Kids and finds her own tune. And my daughter, as I’m seeing has a fierce independent streak of her own – you could give her the whole world to listen to but she picks what she wants meticulously and plays it with great care. You can’t bribe her, influence her or bombard her – she simply won’t do something just because you told her so. *Already dreading those teen years.

Anyway, these days, she tells me about this fun song she heard with Daniel Tiger (super cute!) or an interesting version of “Let it go…” that she hummed. A neat Wizard of Oz lyric or an interesting line from Mental Manadhil. I learn a lot from her everyday.

But of all the things she taught me, this playlist was my biggest and my loveliest surprise. As you know, she loves those ponies from My Little Pony and she found this Everfree album to be her favourite piece and it’s been a year now. She still loves it to death and makes sure it plays while she sleeps at night. And if are looking for something to play for a girl (boys too, why not!), this might just be the most amazing one with some kickass lyrics. From what I heard, the Legend of Everfree songwriter Daniel Ingram had said that he was majorly inspired by Mumford & Sons when writing and composing this song.

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Here are the best things I thought made me love this one:

  1. It’s not just for kids, it’s for adults too.
  2. It’s so inspiring, like you want to get up and go achieve something!
  3. It’s about dreams and I’d like those better than a kid singing about a boy, a princess waiting for a prince or a fight brewing etc etc!

Just read this chunk of lyrics, would you?

Will you be lost by time or be part of history?/Will your story be told or remain a mystery?/Will they sing your song, telling all that you have done?/Time to make your choice, only you can be the one. 

Will you do something great with the time that you have here?/Will you make your mark?/Will you conquer what you fear?/And when you go back home, everybody there will see/You were part of the Legend of Everfree!

Will you find your greatest glory?/Will you be a falling star?/Here to learn what nature teaches/Here to learn more who you are

I thank my kiddo for this gem. And if you’re looking for something to add to your kid’s playlist, look no more than the Legend Of Everfree. The Equestria girls are a riot and they really have some great vibes and give out good learnings. And P.S there are other albums too but this is our family favourite!