Jodi de Vivre

242 Jodi de Vivre

Okay, so I have been hoarding this feature (in my brain) for the longest time now, I have even forgotten when I discovered JODI – which was quite sometime before I e-mailed them back in June! Anyway, they replied to me, last month and I took ages to put this piece together. Idjit! This interview feature is similar to the ones I have covered before (on my blog, of course), but also sorta different. Same, same but different – if you will, like is the underlying theme of this label! The feature reads shorter (yes, you can smile), and without any further ado, I present to you –

When did JODI officially go live, online? Can you tell me about the name?

“We went live, last year on the 25th of July on indiacircus.com. JODI (जोड़ी) is a Hindi word, and it means ‘pair’. Because we are the two (Karuna Laungani and Gauri Verma) who started this brand, it seemed like an apt name. Also, both of us have a twin sibling. And we work best as a pair, whether it is our personal relationship with our own twin siblings or our professional relationship with each other. We think of JODI as the meeting of two ideas, two visions coming together to do something we love and are passionate about.”

A little bit about each of you, individually? I’ve been following your work, Karuna for a bit now, and I’m a fan. Gauri, from what I’ve read – you’re a graphic designer, too and I really, really like how you use colours.

KARUNA: “I started my career with ELLE (India), and was Fashion Editor there. After I quit the magazine, I continued to take up freelance projects (fashion styling). I styled Sonam Kapoor in the movies, Khoobsurat and Dolly ki Doli. I also take up a lot of work for print campaigns, and I am currently styling the ‘Gen Next’ shows for Lakmé Fashion Week.

GAURI: “I studied at NIFT (National Institute of Fashion Technology) in Delhi, and worked as a fashion stylist with ELLE (India), too. That’s where we met each other (2012). I am also a freelance graphic designer and stylist. I work with various brands styling print shoots, television commercials, etc.”

Do you come up with the designs by yourselves, or work with artisans to create patterns since the woodblock printing is undertaken by them?

We start with designing our prints since we are a brand that focuses on prints. Our aim is to steer clear from the typical motifs used in block printing. We first start by sketching out our ideas on paper. We design all our prints. We then share it with the block-maker, who makes a technical sketch of our design so that it can be transformed into a block. Following that, we work very closely with the printer and use one or various blocks to create a print. This is the fun part as we can mix and match various blocks to come up with interesting designs. The possibilities are endless. This is also something that is not possible when it comes to digital printing.

Can you tell me more about each collection? (I notice that you guys name collections after the model wearing the clothes, which is interesting… The pieces of clothing from the Azra collection form some of my favourites.)

“For our current collection, we wanted to create easy yet trendy pieces… You will see motifs like pineapples, cats and paper kites on shift dresses, culottes, pleated dresses and skirts, etc. Our collection has a mix of various silhouettes. So there is something for everyone whether you are 18 or 50 years old.”

Is there a story behind the use of patterns placed as frames for the clothing shots?

“We are a brand that loves colour, and our mood is eclectic and vibrant. We want to be unique, and stand out and be clear as with regards to our brand identity. Like we told you, prints are our forte so it makes sense that we use colour and print to bring out the vividness in the photographs. (Our visual content has been designed to show you what inspired each piece. Prints, art, music, movies, graphics – things that inspired us to create a certain piece, etc.)”

{ What are my thoughts? Well, I am drawn to their beautiful + colourful patterns and prints; also, I find the twin factor most intriguing. HOW DOES THAT EVEN HAPPEN? Of all the collections, I like AZRA – and, Azra Bhagat (the model) does the clothes justice as does the photographer who took her pictures. Those pineapple prints are everything! Them peacock patterns, too. (Out of the clothes, I really like the masculine button-down shirts, pleated skirts and throw-over jackets, etc.) Ooh, and Pune is where their production unit and studio is at, though the block printing happens in Ahmedabad and Jaipur. I think it would be an experience to accompany them on one of their travels to learn more about woodblock printing; or even perhaps, to take a tour of their production unit. (And finally! Okay, so while their cause is just, I do think the clothes are expensive; though I would like to order a JODI something at some point, perhaps at a time when I am more financially stable.) }

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Artwork by Roanna Fernandes, and pictures by Anish Sarai

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La Poste { Little One’s Doodles }

123 La Poste { Little One's Doodles }

You know how much fun it is to enter a giveaway contest, and more importantly, how nice it is when you actually WIN! I’ve always been one of those unlucky children when it came to winning at a game of Bingo or Housie (hey, remember how they used to call out the numbers, you know, one fat lady is supposed to be the number eight, and all that? *giggle*), or anything really. Anyway, this February, Little One’s Doodles ran a simple contest on their page, I participated and lucked out only after the actual WINNER didn’t claim her prize. I’m sorry that the concerned person didn’t respond but I can’t say that I’m not happy for me! :-)

I don’t remember exactly when I first heard about Little One’s Doodles but in the last year, I saw the label’s wares on so many platforms online and I grew fond of the stationery and home accessories. The label was brought to life by Maheswari Janarthanan, an illustrator who lives in Chennai, and I’ve written a couple of stories featuring her pretty products on STRUT120 in the past. Last December, I even purchased the cutest set of Christmas gift tags aptly titled Ho! Ho! Ho! (see picture) from her. Fourteen tags come inside one packet, and I just paid a measly sum of Rs. 239 for them (the tags are very darling, you must buy them this year before Christmas).  

About Maheswari’s doodles generally, they’re certainly more than just doodles, as you can see in the pictures. I think she creates some of the most beautiful illustrations, in fact, her artwork inspires my set of skills when it comes to illustrating (the Lady in the Water piece of work is my favourite of hers!). 

Finally, here are the details of the lovely loot Maheswari sent me! The package came to me around the time of my birthday, and I thought of it as one of my little gifts though it seems silly now. There were so many nice things that she posted across: the Dreamer tea towel, a sea green elephant print cotton coaster, a cotton-lined storage basket (yes, that would be the orange elephant print contraption in the picture), a set of four Love postcards, pocket calendars and an extra set of coasters (the Little Women ones). It certainly was a very generous giveaway, and I liked everything she sent! It was very sweet of her. If you like her stuff, write to her at maheswarijanarthanan@gmail.com, to order one of her wares or in case, you want to find more about her work

P.S. I’m extremely happy with the set of pictures I took for this post! For the backdrop, I used a white canvas board, and Tana, if you’re reading, you helped because I thought of one of your most recent posts as I did so.

{ All the illustrations seen on the products and stationery are Maheswari Janarthanan’s original works. Please do not steal them, use them anywhere, or promote them as your own. }

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Artwork and pictures by Roanna Fernandes 

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