Care For Your Indigo

Colour my world, colour my world indigo.

Someone took these words very seriously. Indigo is to be found in every wardrobe today, of man, woman and child. Shades galore in the volumes of jean garments that sell like hot cakes and have become kind of comfort wear.

Indigo Collage on quilt, the sandalwood room

An interesting indigo collage on a quilt

Indigo dye has captured the human imagination for centuries as the world’s only natural blue pigment” ( Quotation courtesy : EAST )

I am quite intrigued by this colour and its power over us. We go looking for that particular shade of indigo or the blue as we generally term it, spend hours shooting down any other shade than the one on our minds and yet over time when that pair of denim lightens bringing out a lighter shade, we revel in that too!

Indigo patchSo yes, this indigo has ruled our senses from as long back as 2000 BC and still holds sway over our minds. India in a large measure is credited with introducing the pigment indigo to the world of dyeing, deriving its name from the plant Indigofera tinctoria and related species. While jeans are on one spectrum of the fashion world, indigo dyed apparel, ethnic and global have occupied a large chunk of the remaining space. They are even more sought after by those endowed with artistic tendencies. Indigo on apparel somehow tends to connect us to nature just like the brick reds or browns stand for all that is rustic.

And here is an example of an artist from Chennai, Lakshmi Srinath who has used indigo to such a striking advantage in this beautiful ensemble in stone. More on her art in a later post sometime.

Lakshmi Srinath art in stone using indigo, My Thought lane

Stone sculpted art using indigo by Chennai artiste Lakshmi Srinath

Something that is so beautiful and rooted to nature, this indigo dye needs special care on fabrics. It is a natural dye and contains no harsh chemicals and toxins. A peep into maintaining indigo dyed fabrics:

Care for your Indigo

  • Like all natural dyed fabrics, indigo dyed garments are prone to bleeding in the first couple of washes. Worry not, it is the excess dye getting washed out.
  • In countries that use treated water, it is recommended to dry-clean the garments for the first wash
  • The clothes must be dried and stored away from the sun. If not adhered to, then the clothes are likely to fade in patches an along the folding lines of the garment.
  • Must be washed in cold water and air-dried.
  • Advisable to avoid the washing machine. Handwash for better results.
  • Wash the garment before the first use to avoid the indigo dye running on to your inner garments.
  • Damp clothes are likely to transfer the dye on to other clothes. So dry them completely before wearing.

Indigo is a dye different from any other and the process of dyeing is as unique as the colour itself, involving days of the pigment being fermented in the vat. The vat is a bulging narrow mouthed pot 10-15 feet deep and sunk into the floor of an area that is covered and does not allow sunlight to fall on it directly. It would look something like this, like a hole in the floor.

indigo-vats

Indigo vats , image courtesy : Kimonoboy

The vat houses a living organism that helps in the fermentation. It is filled with a thick sandy dye-liqour to 1/4th of its capacity. Indigo, slaked lime and molasses are added with water to top it up. An artisan then feeds the vat daily with the same ingredients for the next two weeks till the desired look and feel is achieved, which could take about 20 days in all. One of the reasons why indigo dyed garments require a wash before its first wear.

Japanese are extremely fond of this hue and indigo dyeing in Japan dates back to the 10th century. In Japanese, indigo dyeing is known as ai-zome.

Here is an interesting note about the process. In the first step, the indigo is “reduced” , changing it from blue to yellow. When the dipped yarn is brought out it turns a bright green. The air around when the yarn is put to dry changes it to the beautiful deep and rich indigo. Fascinating!

And here are a few beauties from The Sandalwood Room for indigo tops the list most often amongst handmade products.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life. A vast array of Home Decor merchandise sourced from across the globe line their shelves spoiling you for choice, from ethnic to classic to contemporary, every piece standing out for its exclusivity.

  • If you wish to check out their products, click here and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier your order to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

Handmade Palm Leaf Creations For Eco Friendly Singapore

Palm Leaf basketry, the Kottans

hand made palm leaf boxes the kottans, the sandalwood room

Palm leaf boxes, the Kottans, handmade for multipurpose use

Holiday times are approaching. We are all either going to be travelling or having friends and family visiting. Time to think up of gifting ideas. Gifts that are unique, stylish, pretty and bring a smile to the faces of the gifted.

Around the globe there is an increasing consciousness about using environment friendly products and recycling. It is heartening to note that more people are giving a thought to contributing whatever little they can towards making the earth a better place. The ratio however may seem imbalanced, but we see no way forward other than doing our tiny bit.

I was at a restaurant to grab a quick bite and overheard a group of tourists discussing global warming, garbage dumping issues and the like. No, I wasn’t eavesdropping; the discussions were quite heated and hence loud too. One particular line of thought in their conversation engaged my attention and I was inspired to follow suit. The group of eleven vacationers had resolved to buy only handmade products as gifts for their near and dear ones. I went up to their table and pledged along.

An occasion for gifting arose just two days later and I headed to The Sandalwood Room, for that is one place I knew I could find a zillion options for handmade goods. Singapore, the city committed to eco-friendly environment loves this store. And these pretty palm leaf baskets, boxes and trays got me all excited, especially after hearing about the noble cause behind the craft.

palm baskets oval kottans handmade and multipurpose, the sandalwood room

Palm leaf baskets, Kottans organically coloured, handmade and multipurpose

These are my kind of colours and just right for Spring too! A journey back in time to school days, those cheerful craft classes where we learnt knitting, weaving baskets and myriad other handicrafts. My grandmother was a cut above the rest, advocated handmade goods and helped better my craft work with her simple but valuable inputs. I remember the glee with which we waited for the craft classes, coming as they would as a big respite from the endless hours of physics, chemistry, math, biology et al.

This traditional Palmyra basketry is a Chettinad contribution to the world of handicrafts. Chettinad is a region in southern Tamil Nadu, a state in India, known for its crafts and aromatic cuisine. The palm leaf basketry is locally known as the Kottans and were once woven by the women of affluent families for either rituals, or daily use. Akin to many other handicrafts of the world, this art too started dying down slowly and then rapidly. The M.Rm.Rm Cultural Foundation, a non-profit organisation took a big step towards reviving the craft true to its original colours and patterns by teaching it to groups of women in villages.

palm leaf baskets, the kottans for jamuns, the sandalwood room

Palm leaf baskets, trays and boxes, the Kottans

The Foundation supports revival of dying rural crafts, textiles and architecture of the region. Rural women are encouraged to weave palm leaf baskets and are taught direct marketing skills to help them sustain themselves and grow.

palm leaf kottan gift pouches, the sandalwood room

Palm leaf pouches, the Kottans

“These brightly coloured baskets are washable and very durable, and being reusable, do their bit towards the environment. Available in different sizes, these multi-purpose baskets may be put to a variety of uses from gift packaging to home accessories like laundry baskets, plant holders, waste-paper baskets, beach bags and market baskets.” – M.Rm.Rm Cultural Foundation.

Two good reasons why The Sandalwood Room stocks them – support to handicrafts and empowerment of women.

Handmade items last longer. Made from high quality materials and handcrafted by trained artists, they come with the tag of being unique, making them a special item for gifting. This is an irresistible palm leaf drawstring bag in a lovely shade of green.

palm leaf drawstring bag the kottan , the sandalwood room

Palm leaf drawstring bag, the Kottans

I have always thought that handcrafted goods have a personality and add as much to the one carrying it. How about using this green basket for fruits on your table? Or for your cosmetics on your dressing table? I guess they could be just used about anywhere in the house. Could add a dash of colour to white bathrooms even?

palm leaf fruit basket dragon fruit, the sandalwood room

Palm leaf boxes and drawstring bags, the Kottans

Every time I buy a handcrafted product, there is a sense of satisfaction in me that I have supported an artist, a craft and a local business. And I know there has been a human touch to it all connecting me to them even if it be for reasons of business. We need each other to complete our lives and give it the variety and spice that make living in today’s world worthwhile.

palm leaf trays the kottans in a set of three, the sandalwood room

Palm leaf trays, the Kottans in three sizes

Thank you artisans, thank you The Sandalwood Room, thank you the M.Rm.Rm Cultural Foundation for uplifting a dying craft and helping women gain their place in their country’s economic mainstream.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life. A vast array of Home Decor merchandise sourced from across the globe line their shelves spoiling you for choice, from ethnic to classic to contemporary, every piece standing out for its exclusivity.

  • If you have liked any of these palm leaf baskets , walk in to shop and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier your order to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

Lextra Mouse Rugs And Coaster Rugs , Personalize Your Home And Office Spaces

If you too like me have always wanted to own a few luxurious rugs for your floors, but have put if off due to lack of appropriate space, here are a couple of options – Computer Mouse Rugs and Coaster Rugs.

Found them irresistible and have picked up a few from The Sandalwood Room. So why not make a blog out of them? And here we go.

Mouse rugs assorted , the sandalwood room

Assorted Mouse Rugs

As in most cases, ‘looks’ drew me in first followed by the soft pleasant touch of the miniature rugs. The Sandalwood Room called it functional art, the stunning colourful images coupled with a smooth computer mousing surface. No art is complete without a discussion on the science behind it. Quite impressive the Lextra Flock Textured Graphics technology that lends the Mouse Rugs and the Coaster Rugs their velvety beauty and longevity. Clearly inspired by the ancient hand-woven rugs.

Mouse Rugs assorted for your computer to match your room colour and decor, the sandalwood room

Assorted Computer Mouse Rugs to match your room colour and decor

Lextra Mouse rug with mouse richly coloured and soft textured, the sandalwood room

Richly coloured and soft textured Computer Mouse Rug with a working mouse

Lextra Flock Textured Graphics

So this technique prints without ink, I like the alliteration! It uses pre-dyed nylon fibers and water based adhesive, both combined with high voltage electricity and screen printing – seven million yarn-dyed nylon fibers are driven into intricate designs. I drew back on hearing this and am sure the thought is crossing your mind too as you read. No static electricity being emitted I was assured, thanks to the technology invented exclusively by FiberLok in Fort Collins, Colorado. And they term it ‘Ancient Beauty meets High Tech’.

Designed as they are for the computer mouse or as coaster rugs, but I can see them being multipurpose rugs. Now look at this, shall we turn it into Curio Rug ? The bottoms-up Ganesha even more endearing! Protect the tender knees of the baby Ganesha with a soft Mouse Rug!

Lextra mouse rug or curio rug , the sandalwood room

Lextra Mouse Rug or Curio Rug

Choose a rug to blend with your room colour and décor. I like to call them tiny oriental carpets and they are in a way. Taking from stunning art designs from the arts of China, Tibet, Persia and the Americas with a look and feel of luxury.

Mouse Rug : Weight  4oz Dimensions : 7.125 x 10.25 x .16 in

Coaster Rug : Weight 4oz Dimensions 5.5 x 3.5 x .16 in

Coaster rug , the sandalwood room

Coaster Rug made with Lextra Flock Textured Graphics technology

The Coaster Rugs are available in a set of four like these

Lextra Flock Textured Country Heritage Stars 4 pc coaster rugs the sandalwood room

A set of four Coaster Rugs named the Country Heritage Stars

I think the gorgeous rugs make for great gift ideas, both for homes and offices, something that will last and last, despite frequent usage, even if a little water spills out from a glass or a flower vase. The secret of that lies in them being washable.

Lets look at the Cleaning Tips

The Lextra Textured Flock Graphics are highly resistant to abrasion and can be cleaned deep down within the flock fibres. All you need is a handy and commonly available high pressure spray wand device. They tell me these are available at most car wash outlets where they are used to clean car floor mats.

  • Lay the rug flat on the ground.
  • Run a soap cycle, you could sprinkle soap water all over
  • Pass the spray wand across the entire surface of the rug several times (no, fibres will not come off).
  • Run a rinse cycle, repeating with several passes of the water through the spray wand.
  • Shake excess water off the rug.
  • Dry it by laying the rug flat on paper or cloth towels, flock fibres side up.

Will the colours run ? Will the rugs lose some of their softness and shine ? No! The manufacturers claim that the rugs can get even softer to the touch and regain their lustre and brightness with a wash. I will wait and watch though.

Alert : The rugs cannot be washed in the washing machine

Special Note: Mouse Rugs are not recommended for use with mice that use the dark field scanning technology which are intended for use on super-smooth surfaces like glass, and are unable to read irregular surfaces like textiles.

Lextra was invented over two decades ago but appears to be more relevant and useful today. It is believed that the technology produces richly textured and intensely colored brand images with far more faithful reproduction of fine design details and accurate color matching than is possible with embroidery. The Sandalwood Room tells me the company calls it ‘The Graphics people love to touch’. 

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life. A vast array of Home Decor merchandise sourced from across the globe line their shelves spoiling you for choice, from ethnic to classic to contemporary, every piece standing out for its exclusivity.

  • If you have liked any of these Rugs , walk in to shop and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier your order to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

Some of you may already have these kind of mouse rugs and coaster rugs at home. Let me know in your comments if they have lasted , will be nice to know.

Every woman is a super-woman. Wishing you all a very Happy Womens’ Day !

Gemstones And Jewelry, A Two Fold Healing

The world needs healing and the quest is on for more ways of doing it. A portion of our society has become extremely intolerant, but thanks be to God, a larger section seems to be on a mission to bring peace and harmony into their lives and others’.

There is so much healing required today that we are willing to embrace any new form to achieve it. But through all that, the power of healing stones, crystals and gems has stood its ground and in fact is making a big comeback for holistic health and well-being. I think our faith in the healing power of gemstones and crystals is firmly rooted and connected to Mother Earth. I also think what weighs in their favour is that  just like us Homo sapiens have evolved to our present form through biologic processes, so have the crystals and gemstones gone through the geologic processes of heating, cooling and rearrangement to attaining their final natural form.

We can add another C to the three Cs of gemstones – Cure ! But frankly when the beautiful gemstones get set in jewelry, the healing process has already begun from the moment it is worn on the body. Those admiring looks  stemming from moods being lifted by the sheer colour of the gemstone and the play of light on it. That is why I call it two-fold healing.

Ancient civilisations the world over have used gemstones and crystals to heal living beings and their surrounding spaces and energies in several ways. Ground into powders or elixirs, worn on persons or carried along and used in ceremonies and rituals.

My personal take on this subject is that there is a symbiotic connection between gemstones and living beings for whom the healing powers are being harnessed. It is believed that each gemstone comprises of minute crystals that are in constant motion, thereby emitting energy fields. Left to themselves, I wonder if the energy fields would acquire any frequency. But when used to heal by being placed either on bodies or certain environments, the minute crystals could get into an activation mode and emit higher levels of energy.

I haven’t studied Colour, but certainly believe that colours influence and affect and I am sure a gemstone’s colour plays a dynamic role in its healing power. Coupled with the play of light, the combination can calm or stimulate, heal or purify.

Wearing gemstones on your person is probably the easiest and simplest way of letting their energy work on you. We see innumerable people wearing jewelry encrusted with gemstones today to create harmonious vibrations in relationships, for health, for business and for peace. The trend has been profitable to jewelers and most of them have an expert on board to guide and advice customers in choosing appropriate gemstones.

A look at how some gemstones heal and contemporary  jewelry from The Sandalwood Room by Sitaram Jewels . All set in 18 carat gold, each piece is unique – no two pieces are identical.

Amethyst

Long considered a gemstone of royalty, it sure must be worthy of being the preferred gemstone ● a natural stress reliever ● provides spiritual protection ● aids inner strength and clarity of mind ● helps dispel negativity ● helps strengthen immunity and heal imbalances in the body ● attracts abundance.

gemstone jewelry Amethyst hook ear rings 18 carat gold, the sandalwood room

Amethyst hook ear rings in 18 carat gold

Amethyst crystals can be placed somewhere central in the house to spread positive energy all over the house.

For all those March born out there, here is your birth stone, the Aquamarine.

Aquamarine

Deriving its name from the latin aqua marinus (water of the sea), it get its pale blue colour from the sparkling ocean ● clears the mind ● balances emotions ● instills courage ● dispels fear ● believed to have protective powers ● promotes self-expression ● promotes harmony in relationships ● aids better communication

gemstone jewelry, 18 carat gold neck chain with amethyst and aquamarine, the sandalwood room

Amethyst and Aquamarine neck chain in 18 carat gold

I have heard about many a traveller carrying along an aquamarine in some form for protection during travel.

Moonstone

Believed to be the stone of destiny, it helps ● harmonise the mind ● aids fertility in women ● aids protection specially during pregnancy and childbirth ● fosters love ● promotes hormone production ● improves metabolism ● relieves stress and calms the nerves ● instills hope, intuition and sensitivity ● attracts abundance.

gemstone jewelry, Amethyst and Moonstone hook ear rings in 18 carat gold, The Sandalwood Room

Amethyst and Moonstone hook ear rings in 18 carat gold

Citrine

Known as the happy stone or stone of happiness, it fosters ● joyful moods ● cleanses negativity ● fosters creativity ● aids clarity of mind ● energises body ● strengthens solar plexus ● enhances focus and will power ● brings hope and stability ● aids spiritual growth ● aids sensuality and sexuality ● promotes good health.

gemstone jewelry with citrine and amethyst hook ear rings in 18 carat gold, the sandalwood room

Citrine and Amethyst hook ear rings in 18 carat gold

It is also called the success stone or merchant’s stone. When placed in cash boxes or carried along for business deals, it is known to bring success and prosperity. One stone that does not absorb any negativity, hence needs no cleansing ever.

Turquoise

Known as the Master Healer, it is said to be the bridge between heaven, sky and earth. Known also as a purification stone, it ● dispels negativity ● balances moods and instills inner calm ● stimulates romantic love ● heals the body of many afflictions ● helps prevent panic attacks ● promotes self realisation.

gemstone jewelry, turquoise and ruby hook earrrings in 18 carat gold, the sandalwood room

Turquoise and Ruby hook ear rings in 18 carat gold

Sapphire

It is known as the wisdom stone ● releases stress and depression ● clears spiritual confusion ● aligns physical, mental and spiritual planes and restores balance in the body ● stimulates concentration ● helps bring in joy and peace of mind ● attracts prosperity ● helps treat blood disorders ● regulates glands

multi coloured sapphire adjustable ring in 18 carat gold at The sandalwood room

Multicoloured Sapphire adjustable ring in 18 carat gold

Ruby

It is considered the most magnificent of all gems. Allegorically described as the queen of stones and stone of the kings, rubies have at times surpassed diamonds in their value by virtue of its power. Many a power struggle has ensued over fiery red rubies amongst our ancients. It ● helps overcome exhaustion and lethargy ● stimulates blood circulation and infuses energy ● heightens sensuality ● aids mystical communion ● sharpens the mind and improves concentration ● fosters courage during controversies.

gemstone jewelry, ruby hook ear rings in 18 carat gold, the sandalwood room

Ruby hook ear rings in 18 carat gold

Tourmaline

A stone known for typically detoxifying our bodies, we must all have one piece of jewelry with tourmalines in it since detoxification is the need of the hour. It ● relieves stress ● increases mental alertness ● improves blood circulation ● strengthens the immune system.

gemstone jewelry tourmaline hook ear rings in 18 carat gold, the sandalwood room

Tourmaline hook ear rings in 18 carat gold

And now for a collection of assorted gemstone jewelry at The Sandalwood Room, crafted by Sitaram Jewels.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore with most of the products handmade and sourced from all over the world giving it a global feel. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life. 

  • If you like any of the jewelry above , walk in to shop and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to organise it for you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

 

Shopping, Food And Fun on Tras Street

Tras Street can be a fun place to hang out either way I found out. With your friends, or if you are in a mood for ‘me time’. I would try out both on different days of course!

A friend from Istanbul came sojourning to Singapore and obviously looked to us for suggestions on spending her four days in the magical city. We set out early in the day and took a walk down Tras Street and around while she earmarked outlets she would like to visit after she was done with her eclectic shopping at The Sandalwood Room. I made a note too of the establishments neighbouring The Sandalwood Room and here I am putting them together to say how complete and indulgent your day can be on Tras Street.

A day out on Tras Street

This is the entrance to The Sandalwood Room. Lets take a look around the insides of the lifestyle boutique and then you will find a list of things (later in the post) that you can do to chill out and pamper yourself on Tras Street.

The Sandalwood Room entrance

Entrance of The Sandalwood Room on Tras Street

 

Transport

Transport is every shopper’s first concern. No worries, Tanjong Pagar MRT Station (EW15) is about 1 km from The Sandalwood Room. So hop over.

Facade of Tanjong Pagar

Facade of Tanjong Pagar

Parking

You can get lucky with street parking. Then there are the Orchid Hotel, Oasis Hotel and the Ritz Carlton who will lend you their parking spaces.

Having reached Tras Street, if you are looking to satiate your taste buds, here are a few restaurants you could do with.

Gastronomic Delights

Violet Herbs housed in the Acclaim House is a new age semi-formal and spacious fine dining restaurant serving modern European cuisines with Asian influences. True to its moniker, they spice their food and cocktails with an extensive use of exotic and eclectic herbs.

May May , the sister establishment of Blue Ginger restaurant is inspired by the smells and flavours from around the region and combines the best elements of Asian cuisine ranging from the Japanese and Korean cuisine to Thai flavours. Illuminated by natural light from the skylight during the day and lit by chic intimate lighting in the evenings, it pays tribute to Singapore’s identity as the garden city.

Terra is an interesting restaurant on Tras Street termed as Tokyo-Italian, yet the cuisine not to be interpreted as ‘Japanese-Italian’. They call it a dining experience, claiming remaining faithful to authentic Italian cuisine without using any Japanese cooking techniques. However, they revel in using the celebrated fresh ingredients native to Japan.

Conclave Bistro is a Western-Chinese Fusion Restaurant and Bistro that serves great food and wine at affordable prices in a cozy environment with a Singaporean touch. And makes it a perfect venue to host private and corporate functions. Whats unique about them is their interiors, handmade using old wood and transforming them into art pieces. And that includes their chairs and tables, cups and coasters, wall decorations and menus.

Gattopardo Ristorante di Mare is a contemporary Italian and Mediterranean restaurant that recognizes seafood as being the soul and life of South Italy and uses only sustainable seafood at Gattopardo.

Chef’s Table by Chef Stephan Zoisl is all about showcasing great produce, be it food ingredients, wine or whisky from their producers. Good food, fine wine and spirits served in casual ambience that reminds of home is their USP.

Fleur De Sel, a charming shophouse on Tras astreet, serves fine French cuisine. With a sophisticated, yet functional kitchen, you can choose to dine at the counter seating enjoying watching the chef whip up delectable dishes, or in an intimate private space with carefully curated food and wine.

House of Dandy (H.O.D), a cocktail bar with vintage charm decked in hues of purple and gold exudes luxury combined with comfort. Dimly lit and soft jazz playing in the background, it conjures up a mood of romance.

M Hotel is a business hotel where contemporary chic meets stylish sophistication. A unique urban getaway in a central location to mix business and pleasure.

Couture

Ted Wu has come to be reckoned as one of the finest bridal labels in Singapore, both for men and women. Their customers tell me that this is one outfitter where compromise on quality has no place and where design meets elegance.

My Dream Wedding is another option for wedding gowns and pre-wedding photography.

Imanuel B Couture is a boutique that offers comfort and coziness like a home. Added to it is the soft music that soothes you while you get measured and fitted with customized gowns and dresses for all occasions. You can also find customized jewellery, hair styling and makeup to match the outfits. They undertake car rentals and decoration along with photography, outdoor and indoor. Seems like an oasis for party planning.

Tired feet and weary hands from all the shopping can be soothed at the following wellness houses.

Beauty and Wellness

Discover Chiropractic is a wellness center where you can indulge in discovering ways of enjoying life physically, mentally and socially, where you can learn preventive measures for a higher state of wellness.

Morinda : A company that has dedicated itself to create age awareness and help people look younger and live longer. They are on a mission to discover earth’s best ingredients and transform them into supplements and products that enhance the quality of life.

Bella Luna is a modern contemporary day spa. They believe that perfecting beauty begins with wellness and hence use ancient therapeutic formulas to foster in overall wellness. They offer facials and body massages by certified therapists towards rejuvenate and restoration of beauty and energies.

If you are spending a few days in Singapore and want that quiet away from the hustle and bustle of the throbbing city, try this.

Singapore School of Meditation and Yoga : A school that strives to improve on the wellness of body, mind and soul is open to all people of all ages, gender and fitness levels. Their classes are available for hospitals and corporates too.

Then some for beauty treatments:

Pure Tincture Organic Beauty : If you are looking for organic facials and organic skin care products, this is the place. Their products are claimed to have helped maintain very sensitive skin affected by Eczema, Rosacea, Acne etc.

Sanctuary Beauty specializes in facials, slimming and spa services, combining the best of technology and gentle caring hands.

And if you or any of your folks are working at R3 Business Management and Consultancy or Guggenheim Assets, then you have the luxury of availing all the pampering whenever you wish to break free from the daily grind.

A view of the beautiful archway at Tras Street that some houses the above and so many more businesses.

Beautiful archway at Tras Street

Beautiful archway at Tras Street

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore with most of the products handmade and sourced from all over the world giving it a global feel. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life. 

  • If you wish to browse for their products, check out their website and Facebook page with the links given below. If you like any of the products , walk in to shop and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier your order to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

 

‘Chic Room’ Look Book – Home Decor Accessories From The Sandalwood Room

Make overs and more make overs. We are at it, on our toes with perennially changing and evolving life styles. Fashion for ourselves and fashion for our homes.

Chic home decor look book the sandalwood room

Chic Room Look Book by The Sandalwood Room

I was at The Sandalwood Room with a friend who wished to redesign her dining space and this is what the boutique put together for her. A compact apartment that required combining the living room and dining room ‘feel’.

We liked the chic yet cozy ambience that the makeover brought in. We couldn’t wait to see the room being lit in the warm glow of lamps for the evening. A bottle of wine is being chilled while some gourmet meals planned to celebrate the new look. The night look in another post soon. And here go some of the components of the chic makeover.

The Chic Room Look Components

 

The beautiful door knob that opens the door to the room is not visible in the Chic Room Look Book, but I couldn’t help featuring it, it’s so beautiful! We would not have done justice to the intricately woven rug had we photographed it away from the look and so, there it stays adding a dash of drama and colour to the nude shades of the floor.

The pictures that adorn the wall are prints of nature’s bounty and they looked best on the walls. The store has myriad options for the rugs, pictures and table top decorative collectibles and we spent a pleasurable few hours working with them to choose from so many beautiful decor items. The fish-stand blended well with the ceramic pottery and so we let it be.

The staff of The Sandalwood Room had discovered during our conversations that my friend loved to read while sipping her coffee or her evening poison and they threw in a few books from their store. That was pretty intuitive we thought. Their collection of books, that’s another thing I would like to feature later.

A vast array of Home Decor merchandise sourced from across the globe line their shelves spoiling you for choice, from ethnic to classic to contemporary – most of it handmade, giving it a touch of exclusivity.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life. I end up spending more than a few hours every time I go shopping there, but have always upped my style quotient buying their merchandise and some get earmarked for the next shopping spree.

  • If you have liked any of these products , walk in to shop and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier your order to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

 

Some Chic For Your Tiny Tots – Frocks, Booties and Bibs

I know why we all love clothes and want more and more in our wardrobes. Obsession for clothes began even while we were in our mothers’ wombs. It all started with our moms. Even as we came to life in the most compact space and gradually started stirring, our mothers-to-be spent considerable amounts of time and money shopping for us. We heard colours and patterns being discussed, it did not make much sense to us then but the process had begun.

I remember the fervor with which I had shopped when I was pregnant with my baby. And just like every mother, had treasured the baby clothes for months before he was born, spreading them out on the bed almost every week with dreams in my eyes.

Clothes for the tiny tots can be as adorable as the little ones themselves. Here is some Chic for your tiny tots from The Sandalwood Room. With most of Asia warming up, you may be on the look out for clothes and accessories that will keep your little ones cool and comfortable. Add some style and colour in keeping with spring with these 100% cotton, hand block printed frocks, booties and bibs.

Soma Frocks

Cotton hand block printed green baby frock

Cotton hand block printed green baby frock

I love the flap collars in both these frocks that add a dash of smartness and will keep the tiny shoulders daintily covered.

White hand block printed frock with shades of indigo, fuchsia and green

White hand block printed frock with shades of indigo, fuchsia and green

The two pretty frocks below are just right for a warm day.

Multi-coloured hand block printed cotton frock with adjustable shoulder straps

Multi-coloured hand block printed cotton frock with adjustable shoulder straps

Sprightly green and yellow cotton hand block printed frock

Sprightly green and yellow cotton hand block printed frock with adjustable straps

A note about hand block printing and Soma brand:

Hand block printing is an ancient Indian textile tradition and existed as early as 2000 BC. In the age of mass production, this craft seems to be waning, but thanks to companies like Soma this cultural tradition has been kept alive passionately in villages through Rajasthan. Click here to read more about the interesting art of hand block printing at Soma.

Pleated at the neck and the hem and two little pockets for her tiny handkerchief!

Smart white cotton hand block printed frock with pockets

Smart white cotton hand block printed frock with pockets

A pretty white cotton frock hand block printed in red and blue

A pretty white cotton frock hand block printed in red and blue

The red and pink series

Simple red-pink cotton hand block printed frock with white frill at the hem

Simple red-pink cotton hand block printed frock with white frill at the hem

With splashes of red, orange and green on a white cotton hand block printed frock

With splashes of red, orange and green on a white cotton hand block printed frock

Almost halter-neck party frock in stunning red

Almost halter-neck party frock in stunning red

Booties and Bibs

Tuck those soft, tender feet into these comfy baby booties with a pretty tie-bow.

Cotton hand block printed baby booties

Cotton hand block printed baby booties

Assorted colourful bibs in cotton and hand-block printed

Assorted colourful bibs in cotton and hand-block printed

Wash & Care instructions for this cotton clothing:

Indigo tends to run. Vegetable dyes are likely to bleed, but will not catch on to other clothes. Like in Singapore, if your country uses treated water, dry-cleaning for the first wash for the apparel is recommended.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life.

  • If you have liked any of these products , walk in to shop and if you wish to place an order email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier your order to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.
  • Give them a Facebook like here.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

 

Wildlife Photography ‘Moods Of Wildlife’ Through The Lens Of Dilip Chacko

Innocent and vulnerable. Playful yet ferocious. A little kindness here, a trifle killer instinct there. Call it their moods – Moods of Wildlife. Beasts are beautiful and they are endowed with emotions too like the Homo sapiens. Only a lucky few, those that have the sensitivity get a peek into wildlife emotions. The closest I got to was in the Kabini Reserve Forest in India. Beholding the fatherly instinct of an elephant that herded his baby into the cover of the forest and would not budge from our way till the baby disappeared into the thickets. And as he swayed his huge form to follow his child, he turned around one last time and in those tiny eyes I thought I could see relief.

This is not the elephant I encountered, but the photography of the artist Dilip John Chacko featured below.

Matriarch herd leader Timbavati Reserve South Africa

Matriarch, the herd leader at Timbavati Reserve, South Africa

Wildlife fascinates me no end, but I didn’t ever think I would get an opportunity to feature Moods of Wildlife. The Sandalwood Room provided me that. I hope this is the beginning and I get to explore my interest further. These gorgeous photo prints are on exhibition and sale at The Sandalwood Room.

The wildlife photography that follows is the work of the avid amateur wildlife photographer Dilip John Chacko, whose interest and passion for wildlife was kindled at a very young and impressionable age. He accompanied his father on two safaris at a tender age, days when safaris were primitive and tough. He braved it all and got wedded to a lifetime of passion for wildlife conservation. India and South Africa seem to be his favourite haunts.

Tigress Machli at Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve, India

Tigress Machli chilling out at Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve, India

This adorable tigress Machli is so called since she has a fish-shaped mark on her face. Machali in Hindi translates to fish. She is also known as the Lady of the Lake, rightfully so. See, animals have their favourite spots too and they like solitude! I would give anything to find out what goes on in their minds in their private moments! Machli is the most photographed tigress in India, she seems to have earned the privilege. Her fight with a 14 feet crocodile is the most talked about encounter amongst wildlife enthusiasts; in fact the first to be recorded and filmed.

Now this is probably called testing the waters. Here is a sub adult tiger doing just that perhaps.

A sub adult tiger at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve

A sub adult tiger at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve

A tigress and her cub seem to be caught up in a tender moment. This photograph brings to my mind the cat stretch that we are told to do at the gyms, except that even a dancer cannot be as graceful as the feline.

A tigress and her cub at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve

A tigress and her cub at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve

A crouching tiger does not always pounce and leap, it could just be quenching its thirst.

The tigress lapping up water at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve

The tigress lapping up water at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve

This one certainly stalking her prey. Padding softly and silently.

A tigress stalking her prey at bandhavgarh wildlife reserve india

A tigress stalking her prey at Bandhavgarh Wildlife Reserve, India

Bringing a bit of relief from the fierce and the ferocious are these gentle chitals drinking from a pond. The lens of Dilip Chacko capturing the images of the chitals beautifully in the water.

A herd of chitals at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve, India

A herd of chitals at the Ranthambore Wildlife Reserve, India

This cheetah is certainly not doing what you think it is. Not roaring but probably yawning. Did you know cheetahs cannot roar? They growl and hiss and make a few other bleat kind of noises. Would you laugh at me if I said they chirp? They do, check it out on here, but mind you the chirps can be heard for miles!

A cheetah and her cub at the Sabi Sands Reserve, South Africa

A cheetah and her languid cub at the Sabi Sands Reserve, South Africa

Do beasts enjoy the cool blow of air on their faces? Looks like they do going by the stance of this lion and its mane being swept gently across its neck and head.

An alpha male at the Maasai Mara national Reserve, Kenya

An alpha male at the Maasai Mara National Reserve, Kenya

Coming back to the artist, Dilip Chacko does two safaris every year. In 2010, he was privileged to go to Africa on a training trip working with two National Geographic professionals on how to shoot wildlife on the field. He was one of twelve amateur photographers selected for this programme. The photographs that he sent in from his earlier trips were his passport to an experience that will never be erased from his memory.

He is on board for several panel discussions of Aircel and Sanctuary Asia.

The Paper:

Matte : Hahnemuhle photo rag 308 gsm

Glossy: Hahnemuhle photo silk rag 308 gsm

Photo Rag is the most popular paper chosen by photographers to create high quality fine art prints. The fine, smooth surface and feel of Photo Rag lends versatility to the paper, making it ideal for printing both, black and white and colour photographs. Art reproductions on this paper make for impressive pictorial depth. They are archival quality papers.

Catch these Moods of Wildlife at The Sandalwood Room. The title Moods of Wildlife is my encapsulation of the photographs and not assigned by the artist or The Sandalwood Room. That is the way I have envisaged while writing about the photographs. The photo prints are available in specific sizes, but can be customised to suit your requirements.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life and you can unwind  and feel pampered. In a store like this and for the kind of products they retail in, the touch and feel factor makes a big difference. So best to walk in and feel the experience.

  • If you have liked any of these photo prints , walk in and if you wish to place an order, email them and The Sandalwood Room will be happy to take the order and courier the item to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Phone : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

 

Chinese New Year Gifting – Make The Best Of The Red Monkey Year

Hóunián jíxiáng : Good luck for this Monkey year

chinese new year red monkeys the sandalwood room

Year of the Red Monkey

What comes to my mind when I think of a monkey is that they are fun, energetic, curious and mischievous. So I guess this Chinese New Year is going to be all of that. Here’s wishing everyone a fabulous Time with family and friends in the year of the Red Monkey from The Sandalwood Room team.

The Sandalwood Room has put together lots of gifts and collectibles to make your family time during the festivities memorable. A small gesture to thank all their customers and usher in good luck for you and themselves.  Step in for the Chinese New Year shopping and avail discounts on selected items.

upto 50 percent off discounts the sandalwood room

Before you go shopping and gifting, a little trivia on why the Chinese New Years are named after animals. Legend has it that Buddha, in his times asked all the animals to meet him on the Chinese New Years day. Only twelve animals turned up. Buddha then named a year after each one and declared that people born in each animal’s year would have some of the traits of that animal ( I wish I could choose the animal or the year !!!! ). So you could be forgiven if you monkey around a bit this year !!

Chinese New Year is China’s most important traditional festival. It is also called the Spring festival. And just like a new year’s time in every other country is a time of celebration and jubilation, so is it for the Chinese, lasting for a week. An official week-long holiday from 7 to 13 February, for family feasts, fireworks, worship and gifting.

There are many interesting stories and legends that explain the start of the Chinese New Year. Click here to find out.

Red symbolises fire, and as per the Chinese legends can drive away evil and bring good luck. So people wear red clothes, decorate their homes with red festoons and give their children and the elderly red envelopes with money in them.

So here are some gift ideas in red. This year, gift these note-pads, boxes and bags. They will be cherished much after the Chinese New Year for their multi-purpose value.

gifts in red year of red monkey the sandalwood room

Gift ideas in red for the Chinese New Year of the Red Monkey

And now style your dining tables for your Chinese New Year foods, your dumplings, spring rolls, glutinous rice cakes and sweet rice balls with some suggestions from The Sandalwood Room. Make your Reunion Dinners special.

designer tableware for chinese new year family dinners the sandalwood room

Exclusive tableware for the Reunion Dinners

For the Lantern Festival, carry these to an evening parade under the light of the full moon or hang them to decorate your homes.

glass and iron lanterns the sandalwood room

Iron Lanterns for decoration

candle holders for worship the sandalwood room

Beautiful candle-holders for Worship

decorative goblets ceramic jar and bowls

Ceramic jar and bowls along with decorative goblets

Little kids at home add that dash of joviality to the celebrations and don’t they look forward to gifts ? They love stuffed toys and here are some.

stuffed toys reindeer and monkey the sandalwood room

Stuffed reindeer and monkey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

stuffed mother baby elephants the sandalwood room

Stuffed mother and baby elephants

No shopping or festivity is complete without womens’ fashion. A sample of some simple jewelry that can be teamed with your traditional outfits or casual western wear.

beaded jewelry casual wear the sandalwood room

Chic beaded jewelry

Signing off as I gaze out onto Tras Street. Such an air of festivity and glee. Squeals of pleasure as shoppers find good deals in stores and restaurants. The first day of the Monkey Year is a week away yet, but the mood of merry-making has already set in. I guess I could do with some of it too. I shall begin with The Sandalwood Room and then step out.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life and you can unwind  and feel pampered. In a store like this and for the kind of products they retail in, the touch and feel factor makes a big difference. So best to walk in and feel the experience.

  • If you have liked any of these products , walk in and if you wish to place an order, The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier it to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Landline : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room 

 

Exquisite Handmade Jewelry That Makes A Style Statement

Handmade and hand-knotted. This fashion jewelry looked different. It could be worn ethnic or Boho style. I was excited, it was just right for me at that moment, the Charakkam line from Mayabazar.

Exquisite handmade necklace from Mayabazar, The Sandalwood Room

Exquisite handmade necklace – Zarina

There was this Literary Festival scheduled in my city and I was on a shopping spree to buy clothes and accessories, appropriate for the Lit Fest. So on my list were linen, khadi, cottons and hand-loom fabrics ; handmade accessories to go with the outfits. No, I was not being wannabe, I simply wished to blend into the ambience. I have always admired artists of all kinds and the manner in which they bring creativity even in the clothes they wear, and its nice to emulate once in a while those that you admire.

I had listed a few stores for my shopping and headed to The Sandalwood Room first as I was brunching on Tras Street. That is something I would like to write about some day, my fun day out on Tras Street. And this handmade, hand knotted jewelry caught my eye immediately in The Sandalwood Room. I wanted to grab all of them, those stunning works of art. One can always tell merely at the first glance sometimes, that tremendous thought and care has gone into designing and crafting certain items. Now look at this gorgeous necklace.

Some may think it’s too bright, but it’s just right for me. I love celebrating colours.

Exquisite handmade jewellery plume tatillone from Mayabazar, The Sandalwood Room

The Plume Tatillone necklace

Seeing my clearly palpable excitement, Jayashree the promoter of the store fell into step with me and explained what this handmade jewelry is all about.

Charakkam is the dexterous art of hand knotting thread, weaving and encrusting into them brass, semi-precious uncut stones and metals to create stunning designs that make a statement. The threads are of either vegetable-dyed silk yarn, or cotton and each style has 24 colour options. The artisans use a mini loom known as the Charak (spinning wheel) to produce the threads, from where the jewelry gets its name. The art took birth at a place named Sultanpur in India.

Watch this video for a glimpse into the art’s technique

Some exotic neck jewelry that can be teamed with casual or party wear.

Exquisite handmade jewellery nefertiti from mayabazar, the sandalwood room

The Nefertiti necklace

 

Exquisite handmade jewellery Cappadocia from mayabazar, The Sandalwood Room

The Cappadocia necklace

Mayabazar, has carved for itself a niche in the world of handcrafted jewelry and accessories,  producing extraordinary pieces of choker necklaces, anklets and bracelets. For those women that want to stand out and have a story to tell. And I knew why The Sandalwood Room took pride in showcasing this exquisite handmade Charakkam jewelry from Mayabazar

Exquisite handmade bracelets, The Sandalwood Room

The handmade bracelet collection

Exquisite handmade jewellery Unbound Crown from mayabazar, The Sandalwood Room

The Unbound Crown necklace

In reviving a dying crafts-form and working with grass root level artisans, Mayabazar has taken it to a different level by infusing modern designs into the traditional art form. Particularly laudable is their effort in sensitizing and educating buyers and consumers to the nuances of the craft and in converting imperfections into unique statements.

This stunning long neck chain is the handiwork of the Lambani tribe of gypsy women.

Exquisite handmade jewellery Caravan Soul from mayabazar, The Sandalwood Room

The Caravan Soul neck-chain

At the heart of it all is another noble gesture, that of employing and empowering women, offering them opportunities in education , savings, family planning and health.

Exquisite handmade jewellery Kadambari from mayabazar, The Sandalwood Room

The Kadambari neck-chain

Jayashree after narrating the interesting story of Charakkam jewelry from Mayabazar signed off and now I was faced with the task of having to make choices and that was hard, let me tell you. I picked up a couple of pieces but made a mental note of a few others for a later date. I was eager to don the neck pieces I bought. It felt good that in buying some ‘chic’ for myself, I was also contributing to a craft that empowered women.

If you are looking for this exclusive exquisite handmade jewelry in Singapore, it is available only at The Sandalwood Room.

The Sandalwood Room prides itself on being the only one of its kind in Singapore. It is a boutique for those who love the finer things of life.

  • If you have liked any of these products , walk in and if you wish to place an order, The Sandalwood Room will be happy to courier it to you.
  • Price on request. Email them at the ID below.
  • Payments are routed through PayPal.
  • All products subject to availability.

New Address:

The Sandalwood Room, 78 Tras Street, Singapore 079017

Landline : +65 6221 2654 / +65 9786 5896

Email: thesandalwoodroom@gmail.com

Website: http://www.thesandalwoodroom.com

Facebook : Visit The Sandalwood Room