Wednesday, 18 April 2018

New Place In Town | Cafe Shivastro Welcomes You All

Does the thought of a cheap but unexpectedly amazing Chinese and Italian cafe near you excites you?

Well, there's a good news for all the Ghaziabadis out there. With Ghaziabadis, I am feeling immensely sorry for people living on the outskirts because when I am talking about Ghaziabad, I don't talk about borders but about the heart of the city. The heart that is still unexplored by many of you so-called Ghaziabadis out there.

So, here's a shoutout to you if you are in the city and are searching for a cool place to try with your friends. This newly opened mini cafe is loacted in Nehru Nagar (Near Nehru Stadium) and you can easily spot it there because of its green and quirky exteriors (Yes, it's an open cafe).

Food I ordered:

Spring Rolls
Veg Momos
Cheese and corn Sandwich
Oreo Shake
Black current shake

On the very first bite that I had, the flavours melted so well in my mouth and for a minute or two, I actually couldn't focus on anything but the food. The best part about the place is its extremely low prices. Otherwise, which cafe serves you an exotic plate of Spring rolls at just 60 bucks (I hope you guys don't revise your price list after becoming famous). 

But, I have one complaint too. I am a big time fan of Blackcurrent flavoured icecreams/shakes and that shake actually didn't match up to my expectations. That syrup kinda taste that it had actually hurt me bad but the lovely oreo shake somehow made up for it. So, no hard feelings. I am definitely gonna come there again but would definitely want them to work on that shake. 

Additional mention for the presentation and the way these guya serve their food. I didn't expect it there at least. Bingo!

So, if you are still searching for a place to eat in the evening (Yes, in the evening because it's an open cafe), here's the deal for you. Try it out and don't forget to share your experiences with me.

Sunday, 15 April 2018

Desi Dupatta On The Rocks | 1 Kurta 5 Solutions

Hola People!

Summers is equal to colorful dupattas with solid plain kurtas. You can always mix and match different dupattas to create multiple Indian, Indo western looks. I am a Dupatta Lover. Are you one? Yes? This blog is for you.

I was never a Dupatta-kinda person until one day when I got very much attracted to the idea of having a Phulkari Dupatta. To my surprise, my sister's mother-in-law (She's pretty cool) gifted me one. 

That was one different time than today when you can actually find a good number of dupatta's in my closet that I love to mix and match with different attires. 

I know so many people who own a number of plain solid kurtas but never experiment trying it with a whole different dupatta to create a new look/outfit. Who says that you can’t look entirely different with a single pair of Kurta paired with different dupattas? Confused? Let me help you with this 5 amazing Dupatta-Looks.

Before, I begin showing up these looks, here's presenting, my very own 'Newspaper-Coated Wall' that became the location for this shoot. This is  made by me and my best friend when we were actually exhausted with the thought of not finding an apt location for this shoot. 

Excited for the pictures? 
There you go!

1. The color bomb
Brought from my favourite Turab Nagar market, this is a plain Chiffon block printed dupatta with a silver lace border.

2. Pinki-ti-poo Phulkaari
This is one of my most favourite and expensive dupatta. I got this from Amritsar. This is a hand-woven Cotton dupatta with hand-embroidered colorful phulkaari work. To those who don't know, this is a special embroidery famous in Punjab. You can also get one from you on your next visit there.

3. Get Set Green
Isn't the color of this one amazing? Say yes, please! Purchased from Amazon, this is a cotton-fabric made mirror-work dupatta.

4. Kamalkaari inspired
Inspired by the trend of the season, kamalkari print, this is a silk blend fabric dupatta that I purchased from Turab Nagar at a fairly low price. Easy to carry, light in weight, shrink free, this one recetly got featured on What My Sister Wore's Instagram Page and became quite popular there.

5. Sunkissed yellow
Last but not the least is this yellow silk dupatta with Indian contemporary printed contrast border. Got this again from Turab Nagar (You really need to visit this market if you haven't. This is a gem of a fashion street located in Ghaziabad tthat can actually be a tough competition of Delhi's famous Janpath and Sarojini Nagar market.


You can try these looks on festive occasions, formal events, while going to office and some even for a shopping day because you actually have to trust me when I say some of these are extremely comfortable.

Ending this post with a feeling that I had while I started planning for this blog. 

'Zindagi ne zindagi bhar gum diye, shauk bade par paise kam diye.'

Wondering why I was complaining about having a few notes? Simple logic ahead! When you plan on doing fashion blogging, you need a number of things which include 1. A lot of good clothes 2. ‎A good photographer 3. ‎Good locations to shoot (which also needs money).

Can you now understand why I was all sad in the beginning? Great!

But, you must also know that most of your problems solve when you really want to solve them. And, when you have a best friend as cool as mine, you can come up with some crazy DIY ideas like we did.

So, next time when you have a trouble of what to wear, go on with a plain solid kurta along with a Desi Dupatta and thank me later. Do share your reviews, your favourite look in the comment section below and till then I should look up for a guy to get my Dupatta stuck to his watch/bracelet because... 

If my dupatta doesn't get stuck in a guy's kurta at least once in my life, I will die a sad girl! </3 LOL!

Time for a wrap!

-Lots of Love

Mani <3

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Yet Again!

Before you begin reading this, here are some points you should know:
1. This is a story from a boy's side. The narrator is a guy in this 40's. 
2. Some incindences are based on reality and are written with love.

Happy reading!

We went to a lot of trips together but this one was special. Special because there was something that this one changed. Not just for me but for both of us.

The memories are vivid but all I can remember is that I came out of a relationship with the woman of my dreams. Reasons were more of cliches than being actual reasons for the break-up that left me all broken and sad for a long time. But, every feeling has a lifespan. Mine had one too. I don't even remember exactly how long it took me to come out of her. I still missed talking to her, sharing things, my routines, gossips with her. I was still in touch with her in a vaguely awkward way, I still cared for her and still had a soft corner for her in my heart but deep down I knew it that it was over. I was over her. ❤️

I planned a trip with my family (cousins, to be clear) when my friends also intervened and got all included in the trip. Since all of us were young, too hot to handle, seekers of fun and knew each other pretty well, it wasn't actually a family kinda trip.

The trip went well and it was our last night at the resort. While everyone was actually asleep, I had something going on in my head.

Something that wasn't letting me sleep. While I had a lot of she-friends, there was something about her that wasn't what we or everyone supposed it to be. The way I felt about her wasn't even something I thought would happen to me all over again. And while everyone thought that I still wasn't over 'that one', I knew it at that again moment, I was actually over 'that one'. Because the pinching and thumping in my heart that wasn't letting me sleep that night wasn't for 'that one' this time. I knew it. If it was there, I knew it that it was for her. And if it was happening to me all over again, It could only be her. While I promised to stay 'that someone's' forever, I knew it now that if there was someone meant to be for me, it wasn't 'that one' but her.

They say you have to come out of a bad place to reach to a better and more deserving place. 'That one' wasn't a bad place either but wasn't home. But she felt like home. While it was with 'that one' that I had the best moments of my life and not her, I knew it that it was still her and not 'that one'. 

Somehow. Somehow. 

And, this thought wasn't ready to go out of my head when I got up, sat for like 5 minutes, threw the sheet away, wore my slippers, unlocked the door, thought for a second, locked it from outside, went straight to her room and knocked her door. And, I was all ready to go back after knocking for 5 times when the sound of the door getting unlocked touched my eardrums. I was glad that it was her and nobody else who opened the door but keeping my glad-feels aside, I end up asking, "walk?". It was 2.30 AM already when she looked at the clock above the TV in her room. Without a single thought, she sad "Okay" which out of her wasn't something I was actually expecting.  I was waiting outside that room to not disturb others who were sleeping there. She didn't take long and came out in a few minutes with a hoody because it was fairly cold outside. We passed through the corridors that smelled fog, passed through the reception area, the dining hall and finally descended the steps down to the open pool area with small tent sittings and a wide area that was more of a perfect setting that I could ever plan for her intentionally. The stars must have been smiling over us with no light of course through the foggy sky. And all this while when she was talking to me, I was only replying because again in my head I was listening to the silence in the corridoor, listening to our steps while we walked past the Reception areas and counted the steps that descended us to the pool area to actually stop what despite of all these efforts wasn't ready to leave my brain, the thought of 'us'.

And the absent-minded me came back to the real world when she actually asked me to stop walking and sit, "Baith jaaye ab? Mai neend se uthi hu, tu jaag raha tha!  Out of taras baith ja?" and she kept blabbering what not, which at that point of time was just a vibration that I could hear to. While she kept speaking, I was fighting with the urge of telling her what I was feeling and then was countering my own self with the thought of losing her. I was fighting, preparing a speech of what I would tell her if 'Go on, tell her!' wins over 'No, don't spoil this.' And while all this was playing in my head, suddenly, suddenly she came up with, "You know what, I like you. Okay more than just like! Do I love you? I think, Yes!".

I got numb which she took as a shock after what she told me and calmed me down with, "Don't worry! I haven't proposed you, I just felt like saying it and said it anyways". And when I was again struggling to tell her all that was still there in my head, she stopped me saying "Are abhi nahi zaruri hai jawab dena, kabhi haan ho to yaar shadi ke liye puch liyo seedha! Let's go and sleep for now!".

We came back and I couldn't tell her how much I was feeing the same way of what she was feeling. I just couldn't tell her what was eating up my head. I couldn't tell her about the debate I was trying to have while she spoke, won and took the trophy with her while I being the runner up was back in my bed but this time, I finally slept peacefully with a smile. (Losing isn't that bad everytime, trust me!)

Months passed, our conversations increased and so were my flights to Bangalore and her flights to Delhi but I could just not tell her. Everytime I wanted to text "I love you", I received the same from her seconds before I dared to press the send button and all I ended up texting was that 'dark red heart'

Maybe, confessing wasn't important for me. Maybe, she always had this vibe from me that we actuallly are together even after me not saying what I was supposed to. Maybe, this is was what I fell in love with, yet again or for the first time maybe! I never said 'I love you' but finally asked her to marry me 5 years, 4 months, 23 days after she won the trophy that day but never said 'I love you'.
But I think today I will finally tell her. It isn't too tough. We are married for like from 7 years now!

18th Feb'18: 

While I was writing yesterday, she came from behind hugged me and said 'I Love You' and you know what followed next?



I just smiled back like always. ❤️

Friday, 23 March 2018

How to slay your friend's wedding | Recreating magic ❤️

Recreation is both fun and pocket friendly when you are having a tough time managing your expenses. And, when you have a friend's wedding lined up in a 10 days time, all you can do is rely on your mix-n-match skills and your tailor's ability to create exactly what you ask him to. 

So, it was end of February when this friend of mine called me up to give the good news of her getting married on 12th March. Would you believe me if I tell you that my first reaction was, "Are, itne kam time me kapdo ka kaise hoga? How will you and how will us manage?" to which I got the answer, "Are, Chill, I am getting married, Sab hojaega!". 

That moment gave me a mini heart-attack which forced me to plan and look into my own closet for if I could mix, match and create something good out of it. And, the pictures and looks that follow is all that happened.

1. Sangeet Night!

Because I think all of my audience is well-aware of what a Sangeet function is all about so taking a l'il less of your time, I would come directly to how can we plan an outfit for such a function.

See, Sangeet demands you to dance and the most important element that should be kept in mind while deciding a Sangeet-outfit is comfort. Keeping this thing in mind, I took the skirt from one of my indo-western outfits which you can see in the first picture below and teamed it up with a Pink crop top tucking it inside of my skirt to give it a Gown-kinda feeling. And, to my surprize, nobody managed to know that this combination was never a combination.

This is the dress dress from which the skirt is been taken!
That's my Sangeet Look!
When you are preparing a look, accessorizing it is equally important, I wore these awesome multicolored- mirror work Jhumkis with this dress along with a multicolored jutti.

Because, a smile is the most important accessory you can wear, never forget that!

2. Haldi and Mehendi

These used to be the all-family kinda functions in the older times but friends are important and so is their presence at such quirky occasions. And, with friends comes the ideas of color and dress themes. The bride-to-be wanted all the girls in the house to wear Yellow or Orange and we being brides maids had to follow her instructions. 

I already had a Yellow suit which will also be a part of one of my posts sometime but because I am a girl who can not repeat dresses which I've already worn many a times so repeating that suit here was an out-of syllabus question.

As a result, I ended up looking into my mom's closet to find something that could work for me.

"I always find beauty in things that are odd and imperfect, they are much more interesting." —Marc Jacobs

And, to my surprize, mom had an unstitched yellow suit kept layers under her suits section. When I asked her if I could get it made for me, all she said was, "It's a boring combination not meant for your age, rest is your wish" and what happened next was what I wanted. I was standing right in front of my tailor because somehow, I had it all planned. I already decided the way in which I wanted to get it stiched and this is how it came out.

Is it bad? C'mon you can speak up the truth!
The shirt of the suit had a cold-shoulder design with half-quater sleeves which is in-trend. Moreover, I converted the Salwar-material into a Palazzo-Pant which is in-trend again. While my mom had a feeling that I might look boring, I ended up looking quite sober for the function. 

The look was combined with feather tassel earrings and a pair of mirror work colorful Slippers that could be seen in the above pictures.

The Theme Picture <3

3. Din Shagana Da - Wedding Night!

Being the most important day of all the previous days, I wanted my outfit for her wedding to be the best of all. Right from planning of wearing my mom's, sister's saree to planning to buy a new dress, I had it all lined up in my mind. But the idea that I had finally, gifted me uncountable complements. (Yeah! I looked amazing in it. And, I know I'm a l'il self obsessed but it's necessary to praise oneself.)

So, I had this saree which you will see in the next picture that I brought 4 years back on the occasion of my very own sister's Tilak ceremony. Because the trend of this-kinda-saree was gone long back, it lied somewhere burried in the trunk (Yes, we have one!) where my mom keeps her quilts and other such stuff.  

I brought it out, surfed internet for how could it be converted into a lehenga, how can I get its dupatta made with same lace and borders and finally found myself standing right in front of my very own Tailor-Bhaiya with all what I had in my mind.

This is the Before and After version of the Saree that got converted into a Lehenga! Isn't it beautiful?

Right from telling him that I need multiple layers of can-can under the skirt to getting the blouse all altered according to lehenga to bringing a seperate plain black dupatta and getting it all designed according to the border of the Lehenga, I and my tailor worked really hard on this. We actually deserve a big round of applause. Please?

Which one's your favourite pose? I like the centre one the most!

Because I want all of you to have a look at the beautiful bride and the girl clan that made these 3 days even better and full of non-sense mixed with fun for me, here's a picture with our very own bride.

From left to right, there's Chhavi, Niharika, Mani, Shivangi (Dulhan), Shivanki & Ritika. <3
(Do not ask for the phone numbers of any of the beautiful ladies in the picture, please! LOL!)

With this, I am done with my look book for her wedding. I hope you find these styles pretty. For any assistance regarding the mixing and matching of your outfits, you can always contact me personally.

It can be difficult to articulate the power of style and fashion through words, but these pictures might give you a hint of the ways you can be stylish without spending much. As a person with a limited money in my wallet, the main objective of my life is to create stylish, trendy outfits at best possible prices. And, you know what? Following others is simple but creating your own self and style is something that can do wonders.

"Style is something each of us already has, all we need to do is find it." 
Diane von Furstenberg

Share your reviews with me about the above looks and do share which one's your favourite look out of all the 3.

So, untill I come up with my next post, stay stylish and don't forget to smile.

PS: For people in Ghaziabad,you can always ask me the Tailor who did this wonderful job of creating my outfits. (No, I am not getting any money for promoting him, I am doing it out of sheer happiness!)

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

3AM Conversations!

She1: But what if he ever comes to you to say 'I love you'?

She2: That's never happening, babe!

She1: Why?

She2: Because as much as I know that he is exactly the kind of person I always wanted or desired or wished for, I am exactly the opposite kind of person he would ever fall for. You can call it 'Side effects of knowing a person inside-out' but I exactly know what/what kind he want in his life. And, being pretty clear about it, I know that's not me. 

The one thing that I still can not believe is how can someone be exactly the kind I wanted. I sometimes think that "Okay, he lacks this!" and you would not believe me but the very mext moment I see him doing/saying things I wanted to see him do/listen to.

I know! I know, I sound strangely mad but being bad with words, I can't exactly tell you the things I've felt here in my heart. (Touches her chest right above her heart.)

She1: But, what if it ever happens? What will you do?

She2: I might laugh at him!

She1: Done with your jokes? Now, tell me clearly, what will you do? (Sounding irritated)

She2: But I am not cracking a joke. That's true....

She1: Sshhh! Answer!

She2: See, you are not getting me. When I say, I am not being funny, you've to trust me on this because the fact is that the thought of rejection is so strongly imbibed inside me that I could never really imagine this part of the story ever. I know it sounds strange but I have never really imagined a future with him because the very initiation of this imagination rings that 'that's never gonna happen' bell inside my heart that leaves me with nothing but all tears. And a heart that's not strong enough to accept the fact that 'it's never gonna happen' doesn't really allow me to take a step forward and confess my feelings to him.

She1: And, what are you planning to do then? Will you never tell him that you love him?

She2: No! You know the heights till which I can keep my emotions inside and safely intact. You know exactly the number of times I've fallen ill because of this habit of bottling up my feelings inside. 

You know exactly how I don't react to certain things in life. And, you also know that I'll be all well till the time I am keeping everything within because you exactly know what 'hurt-monster' I am gonna turn into if I say things out clearly.

Last, that 0.00001% of misconception that he might also feel the same for me is enough to feel good and live a happy life than knowing the 99.9999% fact that he's nowhere on this track.

Life is all about convincing yourself that it's okay. And, it's okay.

She1: But still, keh do na!

She2 (At the top of her voice): Keh do na, Keh do na, You are my Soniya. Tin tin tin, tin tidin tin, tin tin tin, tidin tin tin. ❤️

**She1 joined that ugly singer in Keh do na and the conversation ended with a long hug.**

Love makes you do all the idiotic things in life but she never thought that it would make her sing 'Keh do na, Keh do na, You are my Soniya' at the loudest of her voice at 3 AM.