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These Celebrities Show You How to Rock Your Accessories

I personally believe that accessories can actually make or break a look. Fashion accessories fall into 4 major categories – Jewellery, Bags, Scarves and other fun stuff like hats, sunglasses, ipad sleeves, belts et all. The best way to learn anything is to observe the well dressed women around us and take a leaf from their trend books. In today’s age of social media, this is very easy to do. There are so many celebrities out there from whom you can draw inspiration to stay fashionable.The celebrities who have had a huge impact on me as far as the way they accessorize are concerned, are  Olivia Palermo and Sonam Kapoor.

Olivia is by far the goddess of accessorizing. She has a distinct style and a very classic and modern character to the way she dresses and pairs her accessories. She would most likely wear a simple and elegant plain black dress. But what would make it look stunning is the way she wore a pair of tasseled shoulder grazing earrings with it and carried a stunning clutch. The entire outfit is complete with these two accessories – the statement earrings and the beautiful clutch. For casual day wear you would most likely find Olivia in a pair of trendy ripped jeans and a white shirt with a vivid scarf wrapped stylishly around her neck. What I particularly love about Olivia is her attention to detail. She would finish her casual look with a pair of a canary yellow loafers to lend the look some quirky edge. This is precisely why she stands out with her style and is so different.
I absolutely love Sonam for her fearlessness when it comes to fashion. I almost envy her for the way she experiments with different styles and looks. One moment she is wearing a traditional Anamika Khanna outfit with a bold statement necklace and at the other moment she is flaunting a dramatic couture evening gown by  Elie Saab. She is a fashion chameleon and this is what I admire about her style. There is never a dull and boring moment in Sonam Kapoor’s fashion life. I specifically like the fact that she has a penchant for accessorizing diffrerently. She is always almost seen in very edgy accessories even when she is wearing something traditional and conservative. She completely owns her looks. She wore a McQueen style dress at Cannes last year with a kundan nath which was truly original and bold. She is truly an inspiration for anyone who follows fashion and likes to keep up with trends.

Another cool thing about accessories is that you can safely experiment with different looks. If you’re aiming to try out a rocker chic look, you dont have to immediately dress in ripped jeans and biker jackets. You can instead shop for necklaces or earrings with spikes on them and wear with your pair of jeans and a shirt. This will give you an instant and yet subtle makeover. When you experiment with fashion you’ll learn what makes you look good and what doesn’t. This is the only way to really learn.

ShriVyshnavi Annush for Fashion101

Jhumkas are perfect for the monsoon!

Jhumkas are perfect for the monsoon! There is a lot of history around this beautiful piece of jewellery. Jhumkas can be traced back to the era of the scriptures. If there ever was a piece of jewellery that can be called romantic and whimsical it most definitely is the jhumka.
There are myriad options to choose from. Pick from the different semi precious stoned jhumkas or the simpler two toned gold silver jhumkas. Wear a semi precious jhumkas in jade and crimson colors with an ethnic angharka. Another trendy way to style yourself is to wear a two toned jhumka with a simple solid colored burnt orange colored dress.  Sonam Kapoor the trendsetter seems to agree too! Have fun with beautiful traditional jhumkas during the monsoons!

Traditional Jewellery of Tamilnadu

 

Jewellery has always enjoyed a prominent mention in ancient Tamil literature. The five great Tamil epics of the Sangam period (3rd to 4th century BC ) mention the different types of traditional jewellery of Tamilnadu. It is indeed a pleasant surprise that most of the ornaments that have been mentioned in the ancient epics are still in existence today after many centuries. It is a clear sign that the women of Tamilnadu have had a lasting love affair with their jewellery and therefore managed to preserve most of the styles of the Sangam era. An important reason could be the dance of our state, Bharathanatyam, through which these precious styles of jewellery have been showcased and therefore have still managed to be around. Another reason for this could be that these timeless ornaments were handed over the generations and that is why they have stood the test of time. I think its a bit of both!
Chettinadu is a region in the Sivagangai district of southern Tamilnadu famous for its jewellery. The adigai is a very typical South Indian piece of jewellery typical of the Chettinadu region. It is  is a necklace that is worn close to the neck accentuating it. It is made of gold and red rubies otherwise known as kempu stones. Another common style of the adigai is the single stone diamond adigai. An adigai worn with your kancheevarams is the ultimate regal fashion statement. If you’re a South Indian woman worth her salt you definitely must own an adigai.
Contemporary fine jewellery from designer houses like Chopard and Bulgari are inspired by Mother Nature. The maangamalai and the kizhikaasu malai were no different. The mango fruit symbolizes fertility and the maangamalai was a must have piece of jewellery in Tamil families. It is a long necklace made of small gold mangoes threaded together on a chain with nagasau work on them. Nagasu work is a special form of intricate craftsmanship on gold jewellery found only in the south of India. The South Indian nagasu craftsmen are sought after by jewellery retailers from all over India for their beautiful handiwork on gold jewellery.
The kizhikaasu malai is an authentic Chettinadu necklace. It is a statement piece made with gold coins and a parrot on top of each of the coins. In the olden days, the women of the erstwhile families of Chettinadu had the goddess Lakshmi embossed on the front side of the coins. It was considered auspicious to wear the goddess of wealth and the popular belief still continues. Their family emblem, usually their fort, was embossed on the reverse side of the coins. One can order a kizhikaasu malai with the jewellery craftsmen of Chettinadu and you will find that even today an illustration of a fort is embossed on the reverse of the coins.
The odiyanam or the hip belt is a beautiful ornament that flatters the woman wearing it. It is made of gold and usually has goddess Lakshmi, parrots, peacocks and serpents (nagar) carved on it using the nagasu technique. Today in more modern designs you can find diamonds embellishing the front part of the hip belt called the mogapu. Personally I favour the old fashioned nagasu odiyanam. It is definitely a thing of beauty to treasure and hand it down to your daughters.
Popular earrings of Tamilnadu are the jimikis and the magara kuzhai. The jimikis are still favourites of the women of the South. You can choose between the big gundu gold jimiki or the diamond studded one. The magara kuzhai is a fish shaped earring studded with red rubies and pearls. Mookuthi and Besari are nose studs. They are usually studded with rubies and pearls or diamonds. You’ll find the women in the southern parts of Tamilnadu still wearing them on a regular basis.
The craftsmen of Chettinadu still hand make these precious pieces of jewellery. Since they are handcrafted there are bound to be imperfections. These imperfections are what makes these ornaments special, since no two pieces of jewellery can be the exact same. This is exactly why these pieces of jewellery are a pleasure to covet and own. Cherish and enjoy wearing these vintage treasures that have been handed down to you with your kancheevaram sarees.

-ShriVyshnavi Annush

Shop now for beautiful jimkis (or jhumkas) by Deepa Sethi on www.pookaari.com

How to stay cool with these summer fabrics!

India is a country that has a myriad of fabrics and weaves to offer from every nook and corner. The art of weaving has been mentioned in the oldest veda, the Rig veda. The oldest Indian fabric can be traced back to the Indus Valley civilization. History shows us that Indian cotton and silk fabrics have been sought after by foreign countries. Indian summers are famous for their heat and humidity. What better to wear than the light weight cottons and linens of our nation? My favorite weaves are the Ikats, Madras Checks and the Chanderis. Of course linen is a fabric perfect for the sweltering heat of the season.
The ikats are from Orissa, Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat. The Sambalpuris from Orissa, the Pochampally from Andhra and the Patolas of Gujarat are the most popular Ikat varieties. Ikat has truly gone global and how! From the runways of Missoni to Anita Dongre the Ikat pattern has been widely used across the world. A few high street brands like JCrew and Aldo have also had collections inspired by the Ikat weave. Ikat has a certain exoticism in the West and now you can find the pattern on Jonathan Adler designer crockery and Steven Elmer wallpapers too.
The “Madras Checks” is named after our very own Madras city, now known as Chennai. It is a lightweight cotton fabric that has a woven plaid pattern. It comes in a variety of colors and is another trend that has taken the world by storm. Every summer the runways go berserk with Madras Checks and its no different this time. Be seen in a bold Madras Check saree to stay fashionable during this season! Paul Smith and Gant, popular men’s clothing brands have incorporated the Madras Checks in their summer collections. So now even the men have reason to stay trendy!
Chanderi is a village in Madhya Pradesh well known for its lightweight cotton and silk fabrics. The Chanderi dates back to the Vedic period. It is born out of a special art of weaving with fine textured cotton and silk yarn and embellished with zari borders. It has always been patronized by royalty. The Chanderis hold a special place in my heart for their sheer texture. It is by far the most comfortable fabric to wear for our summer season. The luxury of the transparent Chanderi is like no other. It has come a long way from its traditional floral and peacock motifs. The more modern versions feature tie and dye, geometrical patterns and moustache prints. My favourite Chanderis are from Vishal Kapur.
Linens are always associated with crisp shirts. However the handwoven linen sarees are so soft and feel wonderful to wear during summer. Anavila makes the most luxurious linen sarees in a range colors. You’ll find pastels, all shades of beige, charcoal and black too. She has indeed given the otherwise plain linen saree a contemporary edge and made it fashionable to be seen in.
Promise yourself to experiment this summer and stay trendy with the traditional fabrics of India. Let us be proud Indians!

ShriVyshnavi Annush

The monsoon has set in and all the trees look lush and healthy.

The monsoon has set in and all the trees look lush and healthy. Hurrah! Actually we in Coimbatore, have nothing to complain about the weather since there was really no summer to speak of. Monsoon is special to the Indian subcontinent and there is something very romantic about it.

Fashion wise, the biggest monsoon trends are all about carrying tote bags, colourful umbrellas, fun wellingtons, jolly flipflops and nice big ethnic jewellery.

Tote bags

Forget the boring brown and pick bold printed totes. The tote bag is the best fashion invention because you can fit pretty much everything that you need for a day. A versatile tote will fit in your wallet, stationery, books, medicines and the mobile battery bank that you just cannot live without. For me, the tote is the quintessential fashion buy. Look for quirky prints or florals. The quirkier the bag the more eyes it will draw and who doesn’t want to be looked at?

Umbrellas

My first childhood memory of the monsoon is a green umbrella with cartoon elephants printed all over it, and of course, jumping in puddles which was strictly forbidden. Therefore, I can’t imagine not having a stylish umbrella to get me through the monsoon. Neon umbrellas are a big trend at the moment. You can also pick up the transparent ones to add to your style quotient. My personal favourite is the Alexander McQueen umbrella that comes with a skull handle. Tres chic .

Wellies

Wellies short for Wellington boots is the most practical fashion trend of the rainy season. They usually are made of rubber. Forget buying the boring black ones that will make you look like a construction worker. Look for neon wellies in pop colours like fuchsia and orange. They will most certainly brighten up your outfit in this weather. Also, you can actually go for a stroll anywhere in the city without stressing over getting your feet muddy in the puddles. Wellies look best when worn with a pair of skinny jeans tucked into the boots, and a shirt.

Ethnic Jewellery

Movies are a huge influence on fashion. So, flaunting Indian jewellery during the monsoon is a must. Bring out the jhumkas and big hoop earrings and wear them with your palazzos and tunics. Ghunghroos are also very fashionable during this season. They lend you a delicate look. Wear them in your anklets or earrings. Even a necklace with ghunghroos on an indigo saree will make a style statement. Make some noise and have fun with ghunghroos!

Flipflops

Last but definitely not the least, the flip flops are a must have. All of us grew up with the memory of the white and blue rubber chappals. It is indeed a relief that we now have access to more stylish looking flip flops. The choice is abundant. Havianas are my favourite because they offer all kinds of floral prints and pretty colors. Wear flip flops with a casual outfit. A major fashion faux pas is to wear them with a dressy outfit for a formal occasion. Stick to wearing them for casual brunches on your deck or pool parties no matter how pretty they are. Of course, you can wear flip flops to the kai vandis selling the delicious molaga bajjis that are so very tempting during the monsoon.

Experiment and have fun with fashion!

An article by Shrivyshnavi for The Hindu MetroPlus, on June 29th, 2015

5 Accessories Every College Girl Must Own!

Summer vacations are coming to an end and it’s “Back to College” season now. College is an exciting phase where trying new trends and making new friends are foremost for everyone. Since college is the time you experiment with different styles, and develop your style, it’s important to have a list of things you must own before you head for class. Here are five accessories every college girl must own.

Tote Bag: The tote bag is the one that will carry everything that a college girl needs. Books, stationary, make up, phone, charger, medicines et all get dumped into the tote. So it must be big enough and not too over sized to stay on trend. Prints are trendy this summer and what better way to flaunt this trend than by owning a tote that has prints on it. Prints can range from florals, checks to downright quirky. Quirky prints tend to get noticed more. So if you want to catch someone’s eye, be bold and go for a quirky printed tote bag.

Scarves: The scarf is a clever piece of fabric that only a few know how to wear. A scarf, if worn the right way can accentuate your look tremendously. A printed silk scarf is a perfect accessory with a white T-shirt and a pair of jeans. It can also be worn with a solid coloured salwar kameez. A hand block printed cotton scarf is also a classy option to own. You’ll find that it’s the easiest way to look instantaneously stylish.

Dainty Earrings: It is best to always own a few pairs of simple and elegant earrings. Buy them in neutral colors so that you can wear them with all kinds of clothes. Gold and silver colored earrings with simple detailing are the best to wear daily to college. Pink gold is another colour that is fashionable this season. If you have a round face, wear studs and small earrings. If you have an oval face and a slender neck you can pretty much wear any earring. But the rule of thumb is to stick to something not too elaborate.

Statement Necklace: A statement necklace is a must-have piece of jewellery in every girl’s wardrobe. You have to pick the right necklace in order to complete your look. Tassels are trending big this season. Another trend seen on runways is the layer necklace. You can work this look in different ways. One way is to wear a long beaded necklace wrapped around to create two or three layers. Another more contemporary look is to flaunt a multi chain necklace in gold or silver. A fashion rule that will do you good to remember is when you wear a statement necklace keep the earrings minimal. Pair a statement necklace with ethnic wear or western wear as per your taste.

Body Chains: College days are a lot about partying just as much as studying! The trendiest accessory to wear at a party is a body chain. Wear it with a little black dress be rest assured that you’ll be the most stylish girl at the party. If you’re aiming for a rocker chic look, wear the body chain with ripped jeans and a black top. Make sure to wear the body chain with a figure hugging top or dress. If not, you will end up looking shabby.

Remember to experiment with fashion and stay stylish!

ShriVyshnavi Annush for Fashion101, Jun 17 2015

http://english.fashion101.in/news/FAS-BLOG-5-accessories-every-college-girl-must-own-5025265.html?version=3

Summer wedding

Summer wedding chic is what is trending at Pookaari this month! The fashionable accessories of the season are haathphools, semi precious stones in 3 layer necklaces and kundan earrings. For the traditional mehendi, wear a statement kundan chanbali paired with a traditional ghaghra and choli to get noticed. Tassel earrings with a traditional twist and delicate haathphools (hand harnesses) are a huge trend at the moment. The haathphools are the trendiest accessory for a wedding. This look is perfect for a night of dancing and making merry at the wedding sangeet.

Winter trend – Scarves Galore!

An article written by ShriVyshnavi Annush for the Hindu Metroplus, on the 13th of December, 2014.

Its December and there is a slight nip in the early morning air. You know winter has arrived. Its my favorite season of the year with misty mornings. Winter for me means that I can bring out my scarves and stoles.

A scarf is one of the most versatile accessories to own. It speaks of elegance. A woman wearing a scarf in the right way is immediately recognized to be style conscious. You can dress up or dress down an outfit with a scarf.We are spoilt for choice with a myriad of textiles that our country has to offer. A handwoven linen or a cotton scarf is as luxurious to wear as a printed silk or a pashmina one.
It is indeed a blessing to live in a country like ours where each region has its own unique weave to offer. Our very own Kovai is famous for its cotton handlooms. A Kovai scarf or a stole can be spotted from a distance by its temple borders and traditional colors. The sheer lightness of the fabric makes it wearable throughout the year. The Maheshwari scarves from the banks of Narmada are known for their sensuous texture and signature geometrical motifs. The Pashmina scarf is a legend by itself. It embodies elegance and luxury. The Pashminas are hand spun from fine wool and hand embroidered in Kashmir. My Kashmiri friend once told me a simple rule to follow while buying pashminas. If the scarf or stole goes through a ring at one go, it means that it has passed the test of being genuine.  The Pashmina is to the Kashmiris what Kacheepuram saris are for us in the South. Pashmina scarves and shawls are a must have in a Kashmiri bride’s trousseau.
There are several ways that you can wear a scarf. There are enough youtube videos out there to help you do that. For work, pairing a handwoven linen scarf with a shirt and jeans instantly adds that extra bit of style quotient to your otherwise ordinary outfit. In the evenings, you can wear a vividly printed silk scarf to keep you warm and at the same time fashionable. Stoles can be paired with a tunic to give you that oomph factor. Enjoy the winter season experimenting with scarves and a hot cup of chai!

http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-features/tp-metroplus/scarves-with-a-cup-of-chai/article6687336.ece

The Blouse – A style statement of its own!

 

Its the month of Thai and the wedding season is about to begin. What better to wear than saris for the numerous functions at a family wedding! A sari is never complete without a blouse.
Don’t we all remember our grandmothers obsessing about matching their blouse piece colour with the colour of their sari? The so called blouse piece has come a long way over the years.
The blouse is one metre of fabric that can transform your sari into a style statement. It can lend you the intrigue that no other garment can give. People tend to remember a stunning blouse much more than a dress or any other outfit you choose to wear for that matter.
You can pair different kinds of blouses with the same sari to achieve various kinds of looks. For work, wear a three quarter sleeved blouse with a closed neck. Blouses in cotton and linen keep you looking sharp and formal for a day at work. The same sari paired with a cap sleeved blouse in a shimmery fabric can be worn for a formal dinner. The “in” thing to do now is to work the sari with a variety of blouses.
Some of my favourite established designers for blouses are Sabyasachi and Manish Malhotra. Sabya’s blouses are a must own piece of clothing in your wardrobe. The best thing about Sabyasachi is that he uses different Indian textiles and hand embroidery to create one blouse that makes you feel like an Indian princess. Sabya’s blouses are a sure fire hit when paired with any of your Kacheevaram saris. I’m partial to Manish Malhotra’s blouses for the beautiful nets and chiffons that only he can create magic with. His creations will usually have either a sheer back or sleeves leaving you with a feeling of whimsy.
Among the emerging designers, I quite like blouses from Pallavi Jaikishan, Swati Ubroi, Shyamal & Bhumika and Sashikant Naidu.Pallavi’s blouses are heavily embroidered and come in vibrant colours. You can’t go wrong with her designs when you want to shop for a family wedding. Swati Uberoi’s blouses sport different cuts and the traditional gota work on silk. They are perfect for a mehendi ceremony. Shyamal & Bhumika are Ahmedabad based designers, who work with more classic colours like crimson and navy, giving the blouse the versatility to pair it with different saris. Sashikant’s blouses are made from luxurious fabrics like khadi and silk. He is famous for his kalamkari handworked and silk khadi pin tucked blouses in various solid colours. It was a revelation when Sashikant mentioned that his pin tucked blouses take up 5 meters of fabric to get the sort of finish that they have.
I, for one, have always liked to own versatile blouses that I can wear with different saris as the occasion demands. A good start is to buy a basic black blouse and a gold blouse. Make sure they are not very heavily embellished so that you can repeat them without being noticed. You can safely experiment with different cuts. Boat necks, elbow length sleeves, shirt blouses and collared necks are fashionable right now. Invest in a handful of blouses that fit you well and keep you looking trendy.

ShriVyshnavi Annush for The Hindu Metroplus

http://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/fashion/the-blouse-versatile/article6869017.ece

Top Trends of 2015

Tassels, Statement earrings, Spikes and Sequins are the big trends seen on the runways for Spring Summer 2015. Here are some ways that you can adapt these trends and stay stylish.

Tassels – You could work this trend any which way you desire. A heavily embroidered dupatta with tassel embellishments at the corners paired with a simple shalwar kameez, is perfect for a pooja at home. A more contemporary way to rock this trend is, to wear a tasseled jacket or a fringe bag with a pair of jeans and a shirt. Or you could choose to play it safe and simply experiment with the trend and wear a gold coloured tasseled cuff with your sari.Statement earrings look best when worn with a simple outfit. For maximum effect, wear a knee length sundress with a pair of earrings that almost scrape your shoulders. It’s a sure shot way of getting people to notice you. Long earrings look best on people with a slender neck. The best way not to overdo this look, is to skip the necklace while choosing to sport statement earrings. Look stunning while wearing a heavy georgette sari with chandelier earrings at a wedding cocktail party. Being the odd one out and not wearing a dress to the party is sometimes a good thing. For me, the sari is the most fascinating and versatile piece of clothing. It is made for our body types. Believe me when I say that Indian women look sensational in a sari.My favourite trend of the new year is Spikes. It shouts rebel! Each one of us has a rebellious side and what better way to express it rather than through fashion? Whether its a clutch, a necklace or ballet flats be runway ready in spikes. The British designer brand Alexander McQueen is the cult brand for accessories with spikes. You just have to own a McQueen clutch! Get in touch with your rebel side by sporting a spike ear cuff by our very own  Manish Arora for Amprapali. Manish Arora is well known for his edgy designs. Today, you have the freedom to mix and match. So go ahead and be different – Wear your spikes with something as traditional as a sari. As Indians, let’s admit that we adore bling! Fortunately for us, sequins is still a big trend for the new year. Whether you want to go all out or be subtle, there is something for everyone who wants to wear this trend. I prefer to stick to sequinned accessories and keep my outfit plain. But the choice is yours. Wear a sequinned belt to dress up the otherwise plain little black dress. The same belt can be worn to complete a pair of jeans and a white shirt. If you’re aiming for a more formal look and still want to wear sequins, pair a sequinned bag or a clutch with your sari. Fashion is about being clever and choosing accessories that can be repeated with different clothes for different occasions.

ShriVyshnavi Annush for The Hindu MetroPlus

http://www.thehindu.com/features/metroplus/fashion/tasselled-spiked-sequined/article6751606.ece