Design Your Own Sari Blouse Online

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Isn’t it a struggle and pain to deal with tailors to make you that perfect designer sari blouse? Do you just wish it was easier and simpler? Well, I think House of Blouse might be the answer. I just came across this website by chance: www.houseofblouse.com

You can design your very own custom made sari blouse on this site. You choose the material, color, cut, and design of the blouse. Then you type in your measurements; they even have an example of how to measure yourself well. If you don’t want to deal with the fuss of measuring  yourself then they you can send them a perfect fit sari blouse (if you live in India they will come pick it up from your place). Then the magic happens and in 15 days the sari blouse is delivered to you. And if you are not 100 percent happy with the fit of your blouse then they will alter for you.

I think it’s worth a shot. It seems so convenient and easy. Judging from their blouses on their website and blog they seem to be one of a kind in the making of blouses; that is mainly what they focus on. I can’t wait to give it a try. Once I do, I’ll let you know how it goes.

Here is a little clip on how it works…

The struggle to get the perfect sari blouse may be over!

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Wearing What You Enjoy

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Do you dress for yourself or what you think others will approve of? Ideally, I would like to get to the point where I wear what I feel good in and what my heart desires without worrying about what others think about it. I mean why not? Life is short so we all should be happy to do what we want. But it takes courage, especially for someone like me. A war goes on inside my mind whenever I am deciding on my outfit for the day. I try to convince myself that I should be able to wear what I want and remain confident in it (and not care about others opinions) but once I am dressed and out and about, another voice in my head tells me:

Who the hell do you think you are that you feel you can wear anything you want without blending in with others?!

Then the original confident voice tries to drown out the other mean voice but it never fully succeeds. One way I could conquer this problem is to be more accepting to the mean/unconfident voice and not beat myself up for having those negative thoughts. It definitely does take practice though.

Whenever I plan to wear a sari (usually for Indian social events) is when the negative voice gets really loud. As you all probably know by now, saris are my most coveted attire to wear. It’s such a feminine and graceful piece of clothing. Seriously, whoever invented it was a genius. I just feel that its popularity is dying out and it is being replaced by the salwar kameez. In my opinion, saris look a hundred times better than the boring salwar. And they are much more fun and interesting to wear although I do wear salwars as well. Some of the styles can look cute but nowhere in comparison to a sari. But for some reason, the negative voice tells me that I need the perfect occasion or mood to wear a sari and none of the events I go to warrant wearing one. I just don’t get how I usually convince myself of that.

Nonetheless, when I decide to wear a sari not me nor anyone can change my mind. I just bear living with the negative voice because I hate the thought of society dictating how I should live my life. I usually pray that I am not the only one wearing a sari in my age group at the particular event I am attending. 5 out of 10 times I am usually one of the few people wearing a sari. I guess that’s not that bad. Once I am out in a sari, it takes an hour or two for me to feel somewhat confident in it and then I eventually realize it was all worth the effort and battles in my head. But I feel a little sad because I realize I’ll have to go through it all over again the next time I decide to wear a sari.

Here is a picture of me on one of the occasions when I stepped outside my comfort zone to wear what I love wearing most…a sari.

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At a Sikh temple for a wedding.

The Crop Top Worn as a Sari Blouse

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Crop tops seem to be so in vogue nowadays; sadly I don’t own any currently. They seem to be more suited towards teenagers or girls in their early 20s. Or maybe I am just too shy about showing off my midriff since I do have a little pooch going on over there. However, I do wear sari blouses along with saris if that counts.

A few months ago I had a gathering at my house and my friend was wearing a gold, sleeveless crop top as a sari blouse with a lehenga that she bought at BCBG . How cool is that? It looked like a normal sari blouse and on top of that it fit her perfectly without her needing to get any alterations. She had told me that BCBG had the same type of blouse she was wearing in other colors as well and that her friends also buy sari blouses from there; and on top of that they never need to get it altered.

How does that work? Then why do we have such a tough time with Indian tailors getting that perfect fit? And ready-made sari blouses hardly ever fit well. Anyway, crop tops are quite convenient for us ladies who live in the United States where it’s not so easy to find sari blouse tailors.

Here are some pictures of other crop tops at BCBG that could be paired with saris. Both of these would pair well with a black or brown plain sari.

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This third one could be paired with a printed sari that has a touch of black in it.

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So what do you think? Would you pair crop tops with saris?

The #100sareepact

The #100sareepact

Finally, I found some women who share my views on the sari. I have been mourning the decline of sari wearers lately, since I absolutely am obsessed with them. The 100 saree pact is such an awesome way to revive the sari. Why didn’t I think of starting something like this? It was started this year by two lovely ladies who live in Bangalore, India. Since their saris were just sitting in their closet and worn very minimally, they decided to start a pact where they would wear them at least 100 times this year (that averages out to twice a week). Their friends caught on to this pact fast and word spread quickly. Now, thousands of women are following the pact all over the world and tagging their sari pictures to Facebook and Twitter. How exciting! If you want to share in the excitement, all you have to do is hash tag a picture of you wearing a sari to Facebook and/or Twitter using the following hashtag: #100sareepact. You can even add a couple of lines describing the story of that particular sari you are wearing in the picture; you can describe what type of sari it is, for what occasion you wore it for, or really anything you like. And here is a picture of me wearing a sari which I hashtagged as #100sareepact on Facebook…

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This is one of many posts where I will be discussing saris, since I love them so much. I can go on and on discussing those by talking about my views on them as well as how sad I feel that women are not wearing them as much nowadays even to Indian cultural and religious events. I feel the salwar kameez and churidhar is much more common than the sari nowadays which is quite unfortunate, because saris look way more elegant and graceful on a woman.

My rant about consignment stores

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Ladies, do you have trouble selling your stuff to consignment stores? The shops where you can bring in your “gently” used clothing and get cash back for them. I have tried it out a few times and have not had much luck. After cleaning out my closet, I walk in all giddy to the store with this huge bag of clothing hoping I’ll earn some quick cash. Most of the time I end up leaving hopelessly dejected and hurt. My ego gets pricked. Every time I return dejected from the consignment stores, it is hard not to second guess my fashion sense and ability. I always thought that I had at least some good quality items ready that would sell. But then again they are items that I don’t want any more and some of them are old styles.

Also, I feel most of these consignment stores are catered towards trendy teenagers. Nowadays, I try to stay away from buying extremely trendy styles of clothing although I do shop in some of the stores meant for teenagers like H & M and Forever 21. I know a lot of us grown women are guilty of that; sometimes those types of stores have such cute clothing. I am still trying to transition into more grown up brands and styles.

Anyway, I try not to let it affect my self-esteem too much when they don’t buy back any of my clothes. I usually forget about it within a few days. And I do know that even some very fashion forward women have a tough time selling back at these stores. I know they are very picky and only buy certain styles during a particular season.

Ladies, I would love to hear back from some of you about your experiences with selling back used clothing to consignment stores.

The Big Round Bindi

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I always seem to get these fixations with anything fashion related. My latest obsession is the “big round bindi”. For those of you who don’t know what a bindi is, it is a decorative mark (usually stickers) worn in the middle of the forehead, usually by Hindu women. Traditionally, it is round and red, but these days bindis come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. Maybe one of the reasons my mind has been preoccupied with the bindi, is because we are in the swing of all the big Hindu festivals and many more are coming up like Navaratri and Diwali…a perfect opportunity to get dressed in our ethnic best. I have been noticing that big round bindis in various colors (especially vermilion red) seem to be all the rage right now among ladies dressed in traditional Indian attire. All the Bollywood actresses and fashion forward girls seem to have caught up with this trend. Unfortunately, I gave what’s left of my big round bindis to my husband’s aunt who was running out of bindis (she wears bindis every day unlike me). The funny thing is, even for her standards she thought they were a little too big. She had planned to cut them into thirds and wear them. When I gave them to her, I didn’t think I would make use of the big bindi fashion trend since I wasn’t feeling bold enough, but after I gave them to her, I realized that I could give them a try. If the ladies on Facebook and various fashion blogs are wearing them, why not I? And since Navaratri, Durga Puja, Dassara, Karwa Chauth, and Diwali are coming up–what a perfect chance.  I think I’ll buy some in various colors at the Indian stores here. Here is what I have in mind:

I’ll try something medium-big and work my way up to something bigger since I am not a very bold type of person–it’s hard for me to jump into things. Hopefully, I’ll post a picture of myself soon, embracing the “big bindi” trend in traditional Indian attire!

As for now, here are some pictures of Bollywood actresses sporting the big red bindi…

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Lust List ;)

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Don’t most of us ladies covet some items that we believe would make our life a little more complete if only we had them? We either wait for a special occasion or we wait until when we have some extra cash laying around to buy them. And sometimes we end up waiting forever and just imagine what we would do with them or how we would style them. I definitely do.

Here is my lust list that I have been thinking about forever (and btw, no one is paying me to tell you about these products—I’m just sharing my thoughts):

SEPHORA COLLECTION Prestige Luxe Brush Set

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I have wanted this brush set for more than six months now. I currently don’t own any high end makeup brushes and I have learnt that they can make a huge difference in the application of one’s makeup.  It is only missing one brush that I would like, a foundation brush. I guess that is one brush I can buy separately if needed. Also, Pallavi Symons, who is apparently Bipasha Basu’s (a Bollywood actress) makeup artist, has inspired me to try out different looks with my makeup. I have been watching her tutorials on glamrs and it is so exciting to watch. That woman definitely knows what she is talking about when it comes to makeup. I recommend you ladies checking out some of her videos.

Women’s Patterned Canvas Slip-Ons from Old Navy

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These sneakers are so adorable and would look really cute with jeans and anything you can think of, really. They could make a dress instantly more casual; you could be cute but comfortable at the same time! What I have in mind, is to pair them with my chambray and denim dresses from Old Navy.

Women’s The Rockstar High-Rise Flare-Leg Jeans from Old Navy

Women's The Rockstar High-Rise Flare-Leg Jeans - Rinse

They had these same jeans in a light wash which I wanted initially, but they don’t have any in my size anymore. The dark wash will do though. High waisted flared jeans are so in right now and I currently don’t own any high-waisted pants; I have thought of numerous ways I could style them. They could go really well with a cropped sweater with a collared shirt underneath. I think Deepika Padukone (a famous Bollywood actress) inspired me to wear them. I saw a video of her at a guest appearance at Google in Mountain View. She was wearing high waisted jeans with pumps and a plain white top; her stylist did an amazing job of styling her. It suited her tall and slim physique. Here is a picture I found of her at the event in her high waisted jeans. You can’t really see her outfit that clearly but it is one of the few images I could find.

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 Blue Flared Fusion Ethnic Wear Skirt by Ethniche Couture

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I am a huge fan of Indian ethnic skirts because they can be styled in an Indo Western manner. Most of the time, I wear them with a black or white tank top/plain top. I would add some bangles and a silver colored necklace like this one from Forever 21 which I currently own.

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And there you have it. I have a few other items on my wish list but I’ll save that for another post in the future. I would love to hear from you—let me know which items you like.

See me on Pink Chai Living by Raj, 3 Things Thursday.

Girls’ Night Out

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A girls’ night out is super fun. It is such a fun time to catch up on girly stuff, gossip a little, and best of all…dress up. The food was to die for at an awesome Vietnamese restaurant we went to in Mountain View—Xanh. It was such a treat after eating Indian food on most days; it was getting to be monotonous. We went dancing as well which I don’t get to do too often. It had been a while. It is just so nice to let loose and let go of all my stress. I ended up wearing a blue dress with pink polka dots on it. For shoes I ended up going with flat, tall, brown, Nine West boots since I thought they would be super comfortable to dance in. I didn’t want to be in pain dancing in uncomfortable heels especially since it was supposed to be a fun, relaxing night out.  I got the idea from a friend who wore flat boots another time I went dancing; her feet were super comfortable. I do recommend you girls trying it out; your feet will thank you for it. Mine did 🙂

Here I am in my girls’ night out outfit…

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Dress: Franchesca’s Collections

Boots: Nine West

Earrings: Forever 21

Watch: Michael Kors

Broadway Musical Outfit Review

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The Cinderella Musical in San Jose turned out to be quite enjoyable. I just love anything Disney Princess related.  I felt like a little girl again. It took me into this magical dreamy world away from all my worries and cares for a good two and a half hours. The actresses and actors did an outstanding job; considering it is a Broadway show, that’s not surprising at all.

The outfit I ended up wearing was the Old Navy Denim Dress with the Madden Girl pumps.  Since it is a dress (I love wearing dresses) and because my husband suggested it I ended up going with that option.  Also, since it was Holi (Hindu festival of colors) I wanted to go with something new; in Hinduism it is auspicious to wear new clothes on religious festivals.  I feel auspicious and “pure” when I do so for some reason–it was probably something that was ingrained into me by my mom during childhood!

I am glad I went with the dress.  Since it is denim and I could roll the sleeves down, it kept me warm enough in the chilly theater.  The only complaint I had about it though was that it kept riding up when I sat down because it is a stretchable denim material.  I was wearing opaque tights with it so it wasn’t much of an issue.  I felt quite elegant with the pumps; I don’t get to wear heels too often. But they were killing my toes after an hour of wearing them; I think maybe because I was wearing them out for the first time and they still needed to be broken in.  I really hope they get more comfortable since those are probably my favorite pair of heels, probably the tallest pair of heels I own.  I thought they were supposed to be comfortable because of the platform and initially it did seem like it in the store.  I’ll keep my fingers crossed.

I just love it when everyone is so dressed up at an event, since you rarely see that nowadays especially in the California Bay Area.  I was actually quite pleasantly surprised.

Here I am all excited to watch the musical…

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