Are you a lover of antique brass accents? Then you are in for an absolute treat - this home is a brass collector's inspiration! We wanted to kick start our home tours for this year with a home that celebrates our cultural patrimony and a brass collector's haven seemed to fit the bill consummately.
Join me as we tour the Westerville, Ohio home of my dear friends - Shalini and Bhagavan.
It is not just another Indian home in North America but it is an ethnically exuberant space that pays homage to its roots. Their home is also a true reflection of Shalini's vivacious smile and Bhagavan's affable persona and my husband and I experienced their affection first hand when they hosted us for a photo shoot of their home over Thanksgiving break. Shalini served up one of the yummiest Masala dosas I've ever eaten and Bhagavan brewed the filter coffee to perfection. I knew right then that theirs was a match made in heaven. And today, the readers of Aalayam get to experience their virtual hospitality.
Over the course of a wintry afternoon, with light playing peek-a-boo, my husband managed to capture a few good shots of their beautiful home. Here's to merry conversations, our common love of home decor and several cups of freshly brewed coffee!
Shalini and Bhagavan moved into their home 9 years ago and over the years , she has lovingly and painstakingly transformed their home into a stylish and inviting space. All it takes is patience, an innate interior design capability and a willing partner. She is the designer and he is the DIY guy- again, a match made in heaven! Shalini's passion for a good home is also shared by her sister-in-law, Veena (maybe she will share her home too on Aalayam, someday?) whom she describes as her decor soul mate! Shalini refers to her sister-in-law fondly and remembers bonding with her over their shared passion for ethnic Indian decor. She expresses her gratitude for this kinship entrenched in common taste and says her sister-in-law who lives in North Carolina has been her long distance design partner!
As soon as you walk into their home, you can tell that Shalini is drawn to Indian decor. Brass accents with amazing detail and intricacy adorn accent tables and greet you at every corner. For me, it was a transformative moment- I forgot that I was in Westerville, OH! Interestingly though, most of Shalini's far flung home finds are sourced from local stores - Pier one imports, World Market, Home Goods and even Kohls, she says.
The key is to collect over time and buy pieces that intrigue you. Shalini never began with an inspiration board or a look-book. She has stayed trued to her inherent style and bought and stored pieces over time. And that's how she has an assemblage of antique accessories that are similar in style but different in detail which she has lovingly placed around her home for a cohesive look. Several of these pieces were brought much before the home itself and she chuckles at the thought of how they boxed and carried them across several states before they moved to Ohio. Every home decor enthusiast has a unique home making process and story and this is why I am inspired to tell the story of real-life home owners!.
I requested Shalini to allow me to showcase her beautiful home on Aalayam over a year ago. I was stuck by the layers in her home that added so much visual interest and at how effortlessly she had pulled it together. Shalini wanted me to wait. She said they were working on getting some of the walls painted. And when she called me a few weeks ago to tell me the home was ready, I was thrilled. I am amazed at the transformation. It was a beautiful home to begin with but the accent colors infuse a vibrant personality into their space! I love the rich terra-cotta in her family room. It lends an earthen appeal and paired with house plants and indoor greenery, the space has a natural freshness to it. Bold colors punctuate the other rooms too and serve to create a warm and cozy space to beat the long and cold Ohio winter!
Shalini loves entertaining- they have friends and family visiting them year-round and her culinary skills are legendary in our local social circles! They have created the perfect home for relaxing and entertaining. Stylish, uncluttered, personalized, love-filled and welcoming - nothing formulaic about this home!
This is also the home where their two adorable girls are growing up and a part of the home rapturously reflects the girls' personalities.
Their rooms are playful and fun and mom says she knows what the girls like best and she took the liberty of decorating their rooms as well! A family that functions in harmony!
You can tell that the look and feel of the whole home has been crafted with profound consideration and Shalini tells me that it has taken her a few tries to get it right and that speaks to her ardor. It is not done yet, she adds -" After all, our home is our joy and we keep adding new things. I plan to work on our study next and add some much needed shelving"
What I like the most about this home? The synergistic blend between the home and the home owners' cheerful personalities and of course going home to INDIA!
Hope you've enjoyed touring our first home of 2014. Please share your thoughts with us and we will pass them along to the homeowners who were kind enough to share their beautiful home with all of us!
Thank you Shalini and Bhagavan.
It's a new year and we are only warming up! A design blogger will be in the house next with her stylish inspirations - join us then!
If you are looking for more homes filled with Indian decor inspirations - check out our other features here, here and here
p.s: All pictures are copyrighted to the homeowners' and were taken by my husband. Please ask before using!