OF RELATIONSHIPS AND DOPAMINE

Science says relationships are mostly like drug induced reactions of the brain that is in love. For centuries and evolution, the universal problem and equation that human beings have tried to solve is the mystery of romance and relationships. There have been crimes of passion, wars fought for love, glorified love, undying love. This intense physiological and biochemical reactions are all scientifically linked to various hormones and neurotransmitters that our brain releases when triggered, the main one being the reward centre of the brain.

We all are aware of dopamine which is released by the brain during positive experiences like unforgettable dates, flattery, amazing sex and grand romantic gestures. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that controls the pleasure centre of our brains which creates reward circuits, which then generates automatic associations in our brain that link our romantic partners with pleasure and even our survival.

Dr. Helen Fisher discovered that this “frustration-attraction” experience of obstacles in a romantic relationship actually heightens our feelings of love, rather than hindering them. She discusses how the brains of those in adversity-ridden relationships become activated in an eerily similar way to the brains of cocaine addicts.

In other words? Our brains can become masochists, seeking the very people that hurt them.Then there is also oxytocin, named the ‘love’ or ‘cuddle’ hormone.This is the same hormone that bonds mother and child at birth, and it also bonds you with the men that are undeserving of you.

The oxytocin effect may also be stronger for women than for men; according to Susan Kuchinskas, author of the book, The Chemistry of Connection: How the Oxytocin Response Can Help You Find Trust, Intimacy and Love. According to Christopher Bergland, oxytocin, adrenaline and cortisol work together to consolidate and reconsolidate fear-based memories.

We can become addicted to this effect. Fear also releases dopamine, which again feeds those reward circuits in our brain, leaving us longing for that adrenaline rush. Fear and pleasure inevitably become intertwined despite our best efforts to expose and dismantle the seeming irrationality of our behaviour.

When we fall in love, we become obsessive like people with OCD, literally. Since serotonin regulates and stabilises mood, curbing obsessive thinking, you can imagine how low levels of serotonin we have, when we’re romantically involved with someone that can cause our decision-making abilities and judgment to go haywire. Low levels of serotonin also encourage sexual behaviour, so serotonin only makes it more likely that we’ll also be swept away by bonds created by oxytocin and dopamine as well.

Okay why am I talking science about relationships? You must be wondering so if you are in a relationship or going through a bad one, like you already haven’t heard enough.

The bottom line and fact of the matter is that if you dig deeper there is always always a rationality that lies beyond the irrational behaviour and impulses of the brain in love.

Last weekend, I was out at some three pubs with the Erasmus student group here in Istanbul. Everyone was enjoying, there was a good level of intoxication spreading like a wave through out the party, and literally everywhere my eyes went, I saw a pair of lips glued together. Now, of course I had my share of fun too, dancing with boys and engaging in random light banters, but when I sat back and thought about it, I realised how even after countless years of evolution humans across various continents and cultures will always act on their basic instincts. It’s like you are hungry or thirsty, the need to find that thrill and your brain wiring you to seek pleasure that comes with pumping in so much of “feel-good” factors in your system is really something.

Also, from a single girl’s point of view, even in a crowded night club with so many men and women at disposal, and the freedom to have any kind of night you want it to be, how scientific and practical are we when it comes to the concept of love and lust? Do we always act on our basic instincts to serve our purpose of a one night stand or is it simply the design of nature that amidst all this chaos, we might just be searching for the perfect mate. They say, love and lust are two factors that transcends every society in this world, how far have we come in accepting our wilderness within? How long would we deceptively play the hand of fate, on a night of attraction, orgasm and science? Think back, its all really scientific, there is no right or wrong, even at that pub, with total strangers or couples acting out their feelings and hormones, like it or not, no matter how emotionally cold turkey you might credit yourself for, every one is looking to let off steam sometime, in the most desirable manner that evolution has made us.

Ending on a poem by an anonymous Red Indian of Southern Alaska to a missionary in 1896,

“ Fire runs through my body with the pain of loving you,Pain runs through my body with the fires of my love for you,Pain like a boil about to burst with my love for you,Consumed by fire with my love for you,I remember what you said to me,I am thinking of your love for me,I am torn by our love for me,Pain and more pain,Where are you going with my love?I am told you will go from here,I am told you will leave me here,My body is numb with grief,Remember what I said my love,Goodbye my love, Goodbye.”

Dopamine your night away.

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Shot on Iphone7plus

Wardrobe : Dress – Forever 21

Denim Jacket – Latin Quarters

Accessories from Accessorize India

Makeup – NYX Amethyst and L’Oreal Gold Palette

OF CHOICES AND PASSION

Relationships.

Akshita, Karishma, Tshepiso and me decided that since one of our classes got done real early we would go and chill at some cafe near university. There are plenty nearby so we decided to go into one where Akshita and me have visited before.

Also one of our many reasons to go back is because of this really cute and shy boy who cannot communicate in English but is always standing and blushing. Pretty boys make for a stress free environment post lectures that makes you sleep in your head.

As we sat on the table and placed our orders we realised we were unwinding all together for the first time. Annisa, the other classmate of ours ran home because she stayed quite far, but apart from that it left the four of us to steer conversations at any angles possible.

I knew because the Indian majority was heavy here, we had probably end up talking about food, politics and general things. And that did happen, we spoke about food, spices, politics, saying how our country as well as South Africa is still developing and it will be a long time for it to get there. And then I chipped in saying the clichéd that no country is perfect and we require perseverance and patience for things to get better in time. Apart from that, I also feel how its our generation who needs to step in and change the game instead of blaming the government. The conversations steered after a while to parents and their individualistic expectations.

Tshepiso was given a lot of knowledge as to how Indian parents are always forcing their kids to get into white collared jobs, like be a Engineer, Doctor or Lawyer. There was this popular opinion that Indian parents channelise their inner failures through their offsprings, so that the next generation can make it to where they couldn’t. Knowledge is limited and the possibility of further career options and progress is not given out. The kids back in the country have to face a lot of pressure because of the burgeoning generation gap that withholds knowledge of other career outcomes.

Sitting amidst a lawyer, engineer graduate and a finance professional with many years of experience, I realised how wonderful these girls were and how every one had their stories and chapters in their struggles of getting here and doing what they were passionate about.

Passion. At the end of the day that is really something that defines our existence and our mood. I thought about my parents and how little they have ever forced me to make any decisions when it came to my life about my career or education. Was i lucky? Fortunate? Without a doubt. I never knew pressure from family to go in a particular direction. Getting a 95% in my ICSE boards, my IIT graduate dads ideal reaction would have been to ask me to follow in his footsteps. He never did. He knew that wasn’t my strength and I wouldn’t be happy. He is a genius but I am not.

I chose Humanities and I was told I was making a bad decision by some self-proclaimed well wishers, but I chose to ignore, something I now realise I know how to do quite well. After Humanities and having a passion for journalism and working with Times of India since I was 16, I decided to venture into fashion communication to combine the two greatest passion of my life, fashion and words.

Not once, was my decision questioned or I was asked to get a second opinion. My dad asked me probably only two things – Would I be independent and have a steady job and most importantly would I be passionate and happy at the end of the day?

I think there is nothing in this world that makes me happy today realising that my parents have always given me the ultimate freedom of making my own decisions and choices. Which also meant I got to make my own mistakes, and there were plenty of them, but what was even better is that I learnt from all my mistakes, slowly and surely.

I know now that choices are very independent of your surroundings and family. I mean, look at the courage that these girls possess that despite coming from different backgrounds they chose to follow their passion and make it here, in this moment, bonding over Sheesha and being beautiful in their vulnerability. How refreshing is honesty and admitting that yes I had to fight for something?

Things don’t come easy in life and not everything is meant to be. If there is anything that I am extremely in love with at this point of time and I can’t imagine I would survive without is my passion. My passion spells out my work, my blogging, my MBA journey that I decided to continue because 4 years of design degree is not enough and learning never stops. I think sometimes, I am so passionate about my career and the prospects of it that I can hardly seem to get in another aspect of my life into importance.

Relationships? Well. I have one with myself currently, and I am not compromising on that for sure.

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Shot on Iphone7plus

OF NEW BEGINNINGS

“And suddenly you know, it’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.”

Fresh starts. Beginnings. The first day. Orientation. New life.

I think there is a little part inside us that always craves for hope, to start anew. So, I have been saying how I am settled in Istanbul now for my MBA in Luxury Brand Management at IFA Paris, studying at the Kadir Has University here. I will be here for six months before moving onto Paris for a year as a part of the course program.

I have had a little problem to figure my way around initially but since the time I have had Akshita, my classmate and roommate from Bangalore, move in with me here, I have had some good company and its much easier to figure things out when you have someone at your end. Even getting lost can be okay sometimes as long as you are not alone.

So, I have only had one day of class so far which was very interesting. I always like when I am well prepared and I am able to answer any questions thrown at me, knowing that I am very competitive and I struck a good chord with my Professor Catherine then and there. We spoke a lot about the cult of emerging luxury markets and details about the same, while realising the whole time that I had really studied a lot as a graduation student back in Symbiosis when we had Fashion Brand Management classes. I aced it.

Moving on, we had our orientation yesterday, which was very interesting. We are a small bunch of students here who chose the Istanbul program, rest are in Shanghai and Paris at the moment so we obviously see everyone and become an entire batch when we are in Paris next year.  After the introductions and going through the technicalities and know-hows of college life and how it would be for the next six months, our coordinator decided to take us out for welcome drinks.

We took a bus near Taksim , a really popular tourist district here which is both near to where I live and the university. After a brisk walk, we came in front of the Galata towers which is extremely famous and a must see. Right opposite the Galata Towers is a place called Sensus Wine Boutique. Needless to mention, that it was a beautiful aesthetic place and I felt like I had walked into one of those modernised wine cellars where vintage meets modernity.

What can I say, it seemed like the perfect marriage of the past and the present. Small tables with candles, the aroma of wine and cheese, and a piano where live music would soon take over, it was a very nostalgic and cozy place, it transported me to a mood which I would have honestly enjoyed sitting alone with my glass of some really good wine. I think I have this problem where I need to put up a social exterior to talk to people whereas I would be honestly enjoying the voice of the old man singing Roberta Flack’s Killing me Softly on the piano and having my cheese and just enjoy my company. Now, I know that would make me antisocial and to a certain extent I feel I am but I have been doing well in keeping up the tempo of socializing.

There are three of us from India, one from Indonesia and one from South Africa. We all come from diverse backgrounds, and experiences but while sitting at the table with our glasses, all we were reminiscing majorly about was home, excluding me. Reflecting on the conversation I think home for me are just my parents who I carry in my heart no matter where I would live.

The art of detachment is crucial and so is the habit of adaptation. Missing my rice and fish curry is an obvious but I am also realising learning and mixing with a culture is as important as knowing your roots. You will always miss your roots because that is where you were nurtured but as you grow older, you have to start accepting that your roots are something you carry with you everywhere you go. Change is the only constant and at every moment you are a different person showing certain aspects of your personality, trying to fit in. At the table, looking around Akshita, Karishma, Tshepiso and Ismail, I couldn’t help but wonder about how little we had in common when it came to everyone’s opinions but how sometimes we still tend to be together despite our differences. I realise that people miss home and they try to make a home out of every place they go to. But there are certain aspects about humanity and human beings that are so universal, be it India, Istanbul or South Africa, human emotions are a constant.

In this race and chase of trying to establish our identities, starting fresh and new beginnings, what if we realise it is not the fresh start that matters at all? What if men will always have their biased opinions irrespective of changes and modernisation and we will always be stereotyped as women have been for years ? I think there are these characteristics that I see in men here too in Istanbul, the point of self-glorification and the need to always prove their mettle because of their respective gender is real.

So ultimately, roots are not connected to where you belong to, you see your real roots are what you have been formed into, how you have moulded yourself and can you really break free from the patriarchal mindsets that are so prevalent universally? We play along, sure, but when out of everyone at the table you take a moment back and observe, you understand in people’s reactions and stories who they really are, it gives away more than you can imagine. You can always project an illusion of being social but you know it’s only an illusion because in your head, you are reading everyone and understanding how similar we all are at the end of the day, despite the differences.

Also, the bartenders were very cute. I got a lot of pretty smiles and come again next time statements and well we know there are always next times, but should we wait and see how this story pans out for the next six months?

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Shot on Iphone7plus

IT HAS BEEN 20 DAYS

“And in the end, we were all just humans, drunk on the idea that love, only love, could heal our brokenness.”

― Christopher Poindexter, Naked Human

It has been 20 days since I left home. It has been twenty days since I realised a few things and understood that every place can get a little lonely sometimes. It has been twenty days since I have started to settle in after moving quite a bit.

From India, to a hotel, to a home in the heart of Istanbul to a new house overlooking the Bosphorus Strait, it has been a whirlwind twenty days. It has been twenty days of learning about people, what distance does to the heart and who all end up being important. Its twenty days of shifting in, settling in, making strangers out of friends and friends out of strangers.

It has been twenty days of figuring out roads, language, signs, learning how to salvage some meals, and handle relations. It has been twenty days of understanding people for whom distance is not a factor and some relations are always meant to stay.It has been twenty days of understanding the value of family and how much we sometime take them for granted because we always have it so easy.

It has been twenty days since the last time I thought about the person I once loved, even though I missed him every minute of every day, but it is also the realisation that sometimes you can miss someone you love without being loved back and it is okay. Bad relationships are as important in life as good relationships. And sometimes, the people you love the most hurt you the most and you have to come to peace with it and remember that forgiveness is not for the weak.

You have to train your heart like a lion, you have to fight and you have to lose sometimes too to understand what a win feels like. And most importantly, you have to be strong to learn to let go because sometimes, that almost kills you but in the process when you look back on that moment, you will thank yourself for choosing yourself over everything.

I have been meeting a lot of strangers on the road when i ask them for some help or directions even when Google fails, and I can assure you that not everyone is bad, not all people are monsters and not everyone will take advantage of you.

I remember a few days back, it was a very hot summer afternoon. In Istanbul, most part of the old city does not have fans or lifts. So after having adjusted to climbing six floors everyday because the view was to kill for, I still couldn’t adjust to the absence of fans. It was one of the hottest days in the city, and after having grudgingly requested for a standing fan, I decided to just go out and get one for myself.

I left the house in the morning, after having crossed a few shops I asked a couple of old people by showing them a photo of the fan i wanted to buy and translating on Google as to where I could buy one. After some cacophony of discussions and directions pointed out, I was offered to be taken by a slightly older gentleman. He seemed to be of a gentle disposition, so clutching on to my bag and understanding that he meant to take me to his friends electronic shop down the road, I embarked on the journey.

What did I do here? I had to put out my faith and trust on the universe, I just had to hold onto the belief that nothing wrong was going to happen and I was having a good start to a day with strangers being kind. And boy was i right! Not only did the fine old fellow help me get a fan, he also got it for me at a discount realising that I was a student. After that he dropped me right at my building which was a few blocks away, and I carried the fan on my shoulders all the way to the sixth floor.

It was a long flight of stairs but the thought that humanity still existed amidst all our problems in life, amidst all the broken dreams, failed promises and love gone wrong, that sometimes people help you without any motive, that is something that takes a while for us to accept.

Isn’t life funny where we are always thinking first of the negative situations that can arise or what can go wrong? We are focusing so much on the stories that didn’t work out and the kiss that wasn’t good, or the shoe that broke, that against all our best efforts, we don’t focus for one second on the possibility that if we did put out good thoughts and positivity, things might turn out not to be that disappointing.

In this constant battle of faith and doubt we let doubt win too often, forgetting that doubt is a pain too lonely to know that faith is his twin brother.

So, let go. Sometimes, the relationships that are meant to stay and thrive will do so despite distances and sometimes, when people want to leave your life, remember that their chapter in your book was a story that had to come to an end some or the other time.

It has been twenty days of a little more growing up as a 23-year-old adult. It has been twenty days of letting faith win over constant doubts and distance. It has just been twenty days.

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Shot on iPhone 7 plus

ISTANBUL-OF THE PAST&PRESENT

I have been in this city since Monday now, after 24 hours of travel from Pune, and I am so glad to have completely fallen in love with this country, of whatever little I have seen in these two days. The weather, the people, the whole culture, Istanbul seems to be the perfect marriage of its past and present, of the old and the new. The city of Istanbul is important to geography because it has a long history that spans the rise and fall of the world’s most famous empires. Built by emperors and buried by emperors too many times, the city stands on the ruins of its past, glorifying the history of the present. Istanbul is the largest city in Turkey, located on the Bosporus Strait it covers the entire area of the Golden Horn – a natural harbor. Because of its size, Istanbul extends into both Europe and Asia. The city is the world’s only metropolis to extend into more than one continent.

Due to its participation in these empires, Istanbul has also undergone various name changes throughout its lengthy history.

HISTORY OF ISTANBUL IN BRIEF

BYZANTIUM ERA – THE ROMAN EMPIRE (330-395 CE)-THE BYZANTINE (EASTERN ROMAN) EMPIRE (395-1204 AND 1261-1453 CE)-THE LATIN EMPIRE (1204-1261)-THE OTTOMAN EMPIRE (1453-1922)-THE REPUBLIC OF TURKEY (1923-TODAY)

Also known as the European Capital of Culture because of its melting pot of populace and various religions as well as culture, Istanbul maintains that fine distinguishing line that let’s a traveller understand the many mysteries and tales that this city hides. Since my hotel is located at the heart of European side of Istanbul, at Gülhane Park, I decided to take a trip to the very very famous Hagia Sophia and the Blue Mosque.

After having a brilliant breakfast, I strolled out, taking in the beautiful breeze and the good looking men. After about 600meters, I reached my first destination.

HAGIA SOPHIA

One of the most mysterious and extremely written about monuments in the city’s history, the Hagia Sophia survived earthquakes, religious power struggles, and has been a church (basilica), a mosque and is now a museum. It is known as the Ayasofya in Turkish, and was dedicated to the Wisdom (Sophia) of God. There were once two more churches that were regarded as “Churches of Divine Wisdom” but the Hagia Sophia is the last that remains.

From the time of its construction between 532 and 537 AD, on the orders of Byzantine Emperor Justinian I, through to 1453 AD, the Hagia Sophia served as a cathedral for the Eastern Orthodox Church. However, Constantinople, as Istanbul was once called, was conquered by the Ottoman Turks at this time, and the Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque by order of Sultan Mehmed II. Relics such as the shroud of Mary, nails from the true cross and the tombstone of Jesus were some of its treasures, until the city was ransacked during the Fourth crusade. It remained in use as a mosque until as recently as 1931, when it was closed down for four years to be reopened as a museum in 1935 by the first President of Turkey, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

When I entered the monument, I was not only transported to a different time, but I could also decipher the existence of two most primary religion. While the Islamic sanctions remains, right above the structure is Virgin Mary, holding baby Jesus, protected by Archangels Gabriel and Michael. Also, guarding above the door are two angels, guardians of the heaven. As one enters, one sees the ceiling that was built at a height so high that it was supposedly a doorway to heaven.  Apart that, there are a couple of tombstones that one can see around the monuments, and one of the largest baptism area that Istanbul had in those days. As Hagia Sophia maintains the balance between the two religious powers, I couldn’t help but wonder how difficult was it for humanity to co-exist so peacefully?

THE BLUE MOSQUE / SULTANAHMET MOSQUE

Istanbul’s Blue Mosque is also known as Sultanahmet Mosque, named after Sultan Ahmet I who wished to build an Islamic place of worship that would compete with the Hagia Sophia. The two places of worship now stand side by side for visitors to judge which is the more extraordinary of the architectural marvels. Mosques traditionally have one, two or four minarets. What makes the Blue Mosque unique as it boasts six minarets. Although the main west entrance is far grander than the north entrance, non-worshippers are asked to use the north entrance, like I was, to keep the mosque’s sacredness intact. The Blue Mosque’s interior is lit with two hundred and sixty windows which were once filled with stained glass of the seventeenth century. Unfortunately they have been lost and replaced with replicas far more inferior. The mosque’s interior has 20,000 blue tiles that line its high ceiling. The oldest of these tiles feature flowers, trees and abstract patterns that make them fine examples of sixteenth century Iznik design.

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Shot on Iphone7plus

THE UNTAMED x RANGTARA

” I am here to live, laugh, learn, love, celebrate, expand and contribute. I am magic and I am power, and in this remembrance I am free.” – Lee Harris

She stood amidst the colours. Her mind wandering to the fact that how life was nothing but a spectrum of colours to choose from, colours that reflected ideologies and perceptions, colours that reflected choices. She knew that even when she was standing apart her soul was blending in. She had heard that strength lied in not being attached but didn’t the true test of strength lie in the notoriety of attachment and still maintaining one’s free spirit.

She was always untamed, unfazed and wild. She just knew that some women weren’t born to blend in, they were just meant to stand apart and herald spring after winter had waged its wars. These women were supposed to lead and empathise. Some women were born to show this wretched universe how a human can be so gentle yet so strong.

She assumed she could be anyone. From being an independent working woman, to being the girl who cheats on fashion with grocery shopping, she was always striving for perfection but she knew in her heart, that her heart was something that raced, through the eyes of the lady selling vegetables, to the man bargaining for an extra piece. Some women, she learnt, were born to be the centre of gravity. She knew better to advise people to never mess with a woman who knows there is magic inside her.

She knew she was not singular. She had many aspects of her individuality that went from day to night, just like the setting sun. She knew that someone’s sunset was a sunrise somewhere. She had this illusion about romanticism and she always found so much of depth and love in clothes that adorned her and reflected her free spiritedness. She wasn’t willing to be someones six am sunrise but someones gloomy sunset definitely.

She was well aware of the fact that time waited for none, and the seed with a sun’s love, in the spring, becomes the rose. She was such an expert of duality that her clothes reflected the same attitude. She felt choices in life didn’t define a person alone, but also the clothes you wear and how you wear these stories of a fabric on you reflects a lot about your personality too. She could be a morning desk person laughing at a mirage to a 8 p.m dinner date where she is breaking rules and making vibes. She was half a goddess and half a tribe, she wanted no mistakes to be made in her recognition.

Clothes weren’t just items for her to cover the body, they were stories fabricated into a personality. Each garment was a work of art, pin tucks and slits, collars to bandhnis, it was a ricocheting affair. An affair she wanted to be remembered wearing, and in that moment she was the maverick, uninhibited and the untamed.

“You keep me safe, I will keep you wild.”

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Brand Collaboration – Rangtara 

Photo Story by Manjari Singh and Mehuljeet Singh

Assistant Styling by Vaishali Pandey

MY ISTANBUL PACKING WITH AFAMADO

So my departure is close, and I am a bit upset with a heavy heart as saying goodbyes and leaving home is tough, especially when there is no guarantee of a return. I have just three days in hand which means ideally I should have started packing by now and progressed with checklists, but here I am, writing a post for you guys, telling you how difficult it is to pack 23 years in 2 suitcases over three days.

Since my departure to Istanbul is on Sunday and that country is going to be my home now for a long time for my MBA, I have been thinking of taking some modest yet stylish dresses because I need clothes and makeup to survive. While listing down the dresses and clothes and shoes of late, I came across this very pretty floral, double-flap neck white dress from the brand Afamado. It is so elegant and stylish, it was definitely in my “Take” list. I love the fact that it totally reflects my sense of personal style and comfort and their variety is endless.

I think Istanbul is looking a lot better as I am trying to pack my way through. What do you think?

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Photography by Manjari Singh

OF SOAPS AND SKIN-RANGTARA INDULGENCE

I woke up one morning with a bad dream and a zit on my face and I freaked out to the next level of awarding myself a new trophy in my dramatics, but I just couldn’t help it! I have a very sensitive skin and a bit of harsh makeup or prolonged shoot hours can make my skin look dull, lifeless and zit prone apparently.

After covering it up, I decided I needed some coffee and called up my friend Tara to meet me at Koregaon Park. The first thing I did was complain about my zit obviously and how that was the biggest problem in my life currently. Headlining trivial problems was something I aced at in today’s economy. Anyway, after all that hoopla, she told me how she makes these absolutely amazing hand made organic soaps that have helped many with their skin problems and dryness, especially given the weather, and because it is purely organic, it has no side effects.

I was thrilled at the prospect of trying these soaps out and she went to her car to get me a few. Now, even though black coffee was what I crave at 6pm every evening, I saw these soaps and I was hungry too. Why? You would be too if you scroll down and take a look.

So a little trivia about these aromatic and oddly delicious to look at, organic handmade soaps –

Composed of coconut oil,olive oil,sunflower oil,cocoa butter and shea butter even almond oil can be added as per need. Her brand, RangTara presents the magic of indulgence with more than 15 years of naturopath experience in health and beauty,  and they now bring the complete care for your skin, mind and body. The source of their essences happens to be a 100 year old family legacy secret!

How it works for the skin is that the ingredients in the products are finely picked in a naturopath, organic way to address all day to day problems, leaving skin clean and radiant.

For the body range, the natural scrubs and oils are specifically combined keeping in mind the difference between the face and body skin.  And for the mind their aromas and the colour of the products are made considring indulgence and therapy, each fragrance specialises in relaxation and rejuvenation.

Below are the mesmerising soaps and the christening has been done by me for fun.

The Floral Dilemma

The Coffee Addict

The Rose Garden

Of Mud packs and clay

Of Pastries, Cupcakes and Doughnuts

So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and try these amazing organic soaps or gift your loved ones to destress and turn it into an amazing home spa experience. I have tried the pastry and the doughnut soaps and they are so smooth and soft like butter, without much foam, and the aroma instantly soothes your senses after a long day and awakens you after that fresh morning shower. It is the best gift you can give your skin this festival!
For orders – Rangtara 
Written by Adhisa Ghosh
Photography by Manjari Singh
Featuring Brand – Rangtara

WILDBERRYCHILDxSHUBHASHINIxWABI-SABI

It was a weekday and I clearly remember I was busy under piles of document work while being out with dad, that is when my good friend Tara gave me a call asking me if I wanted to be a part of an exhibition happening at the Conrad. Benefits of being there would be lots of jewellery and fashion. Now, hey, I was in a oversized shirt and messy bun but boy who cares about that when fashion and accessories is more than often what a girl like me lives for, also shoes. In an hour I had rushed back home, taken a good long shower, set my hair, put on a halter maxi dress, some tall shoes and voila! I was ready to head out.

As I drove down, I was so excited to see how the Conrad Couture Exhibition was going to be like. Once having reached, I found my way to the stalls of Shubhashini Ornamnetals and Wabi-Sabi. Established by jewellery designer Akassh k Aggarwal, the label Shubhashini Ornamentals boasted of some amazing collections of temple style bohemian jewellery and statement pieces that one had to be bold enough to carry off.

The label Wabi-Sabi on the other hand by Neeru Wadhwa from Hyderabad was a perfect blend of sustainable fashion and comfort fabric with indo-fusion style and flowing silhouettes complete with basic tie and dye prints. From two-tiered gowns to skirt-blouse combination and sarees, I was spoilt for choice. I also think apart from the fashion, more often than not, I feel more activated when I meet people who are passionate about what they do because that, believe it or not, makes me look radiant! It is like the vibe surrounds me and I cannot help but soak it in.

After getting acquainted and going through the collections, I loved their styles and enthusiasm. Akassh and Neeru were such warm and caring people and I was immediately at ease , picking out my clothing styles and deciding to create a few looks.

The Magenta Glory and Statement pieces

I absolutely loved the softness and comfort of the gown with the flare at the hem, as I did a balancing act with Akassh’s statement neck piece, bangle and a ring. How gorgeous does the collection look?

The Tie and Dye embracing Turquoise

Ever thought that a saree could be extremely casual and comfortable, styled with statement pieces and could be a transient from your day to night look. Well, then this is something to take an inspiration from.

The Skirt Blouse Duo with Stone pieces

My favourite look. Throw in a colourful shrug to add layering and break the monochrome tie and dye print. Akassh styled me with some of his best pieces and they are absolutely to die for!

With Akassh K Aggarwal, Neeru Wadhwa.

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Photography – Manjari Singh

Assistance – Sharmeishtha Singh

Outfits – Wabi-Sabi (Neeru Wadhwa)

Jewellery – Shubhashini Ornamentals

Location – Conrad, Pune

A DAY AT SEASONS

I remember a weekend when I was extremely gloomy and I needed some retail therapy. The weather outside escalated the gloominess more and the monsoon was really caving it’s way in. I decided to stop being lazy and digging into sitcoms, I needed a good dose of fashion and style, I needed to dress up and splurge, I needed the whole package. I called up a few friends but they seemed to be busy. So what I did instead was I told myself that I could do this on my own, took the car out of the driveway and headed towards Seasons mall. Since it is also a place that is not too far away from where I live, I was really looking forward to checking out some of their recent collections that the brands they house have to offer.

I know that a lot of times, women who are plus sized and curvy find it a bit difficult to get their sizes in a mall. Quoting one of my main girl Raveena ,” The trial rooms of these malls sees so many hopes and dreams and when its not the right fit everything comes crashing in,” I mulled over at this statement while I parked.

Heading into the brand Splash first, I schemed through their collections and loved a few so much that i couldn’t resist being the quintessential fashionista in me take over. Splash has always been one brand that I find offers size variations and it is not very difficult to navigate your way through once they have new collections in stock. The designs and collections are extremely chic and trendy and offers a mix of personalities for every type of woman out there. Thanks to Seasons, I could immerse myself in clothes and accessories that did the exact effect as the extra fat and creamy ice creams had on Monica and Rachel.

-SPLASH

I love this blue dress and the sleeve details. Completely besotted and having some ultra retro and glamorous moments while accessorising with the ring glares and a choker. Add a pair of golden stilettos for the drama.

The quote shirts have been in trend for a while and what better than to “Create your own”.

-WESTSIDE

I think westside is again another brand that houses some really good, trendy, fashionable and affordable brands. My certain favourites are Nuon, Giacurves and Bombay Paisley. The best part also is that both the brands are adjacently located so one really doesn’t waste much time getting the best of fashion right there. I also think Seasons houses all the best brands that come in with some really good collections and the mall is never overcrowded that you can’t manoeuvre through.

My first stop was at the brand Bombay Paisley inside the store. Thanks to all the gloominess on the weather front I needed to feel like I was running on sunshine, and ain’t no clouds coming in my way! I love the almost yellow with a tinge of mustard shade and the checks giving it an extremely semi formal yet brunch feel, complete with the belt to cinch the waist. Add a heavy neckpiece like i did to assert a statement.

For all those who follow me on my social medias will know that even if I am all up for experimentation and trying out new trends, there is nothing more that I love than a monochrome look, lace and sarees. Baby pink and Salmon shades are totally my personality, I think i belong a bit on both the extreme points of the fashion spectrum! I can dress up in a baby pink dress like this one paired with heels of the same shade and complete with a dainty piece of accessory, basking in my monochrome glory. I can also dress up in a complete punk or goth style! However, this dress was love at first sight.

If you are someone who is conscious of being a plus size, I would not advise you to steer clear of this choice, I would tell you to rush to Seasons right now and grab this from Nuon brand at Westside, and flaunt your curves. As long as you love yourself in it , that is the only validation that matters, not even me encouraging you, or showing you.

Okay, I let the grey weather take over me completely in this oversized top and layered accessories from Giacurves. What else does a girl really want now, eh?

I think when I left the place, I left with the experience that Seasons was not just a mall, it was an experience and lifestyle that is achievable and something one can possess. Human beings love possession, especially of experiences, not just of goods and products. I had to completely give it to Seasons Mall that day for brightening my mood and letting me feel like Carrie Bradshaw, needless to say, I got ‘carrie’d away 😉

Written by Adhisa Ghosh

Photography by Sameet Jain, Manjari Singh and Mehuljeet Singh

Assistant Styling by Vaishali Pandey

Location, Brand – Seasons Mall