Garnier #TwiceAsNice

collaboration, Fashion, garnier, indian fashion blog, Look of the Day
The first time I had used Garnier was when they came up with the Love Long hair range of shampoo & conditioner with a new formula, sometime last year. Until then it wasn’t really a brand that I had paid much attention to. Although I tend to keep changing my hair products every few months, I used Garnier constantly for almost six months or so. I was never much into beauty products but with the launch of Garnier’s new Summer cleansing skin care routine, I decided to give one my favorite brands a try again. I have combination skin and it’s a nightmare to manage it all through the year. It’s moody and I can almost never get it to behave properly. Recently Garnier had come up with an interesting challenge for their new launch, where you could team up with your blogger buddy to create looks based on the theme TwiceAsNice.

One of the best aspects of blogging is the chance to connect with like minded people and fellow bloggers. For the longest time Rohita from My Faded Denim and I had been planning to meet up and collaborate.  When she contacted me regarding this I jumped at the chance of doing something interesting with the concept. After a lot of messages back and forth over a period of two weeks, we finally decided to embrace the ever popular summer trend of crop tops and slouchy trousers. Although, because of time constraints and other personal commitments we couldn’t manage to shoot together, we did manage to put together looks that complemented the theme perfectly!

I love using scrubs during the summer! I usually use a lot of home made scrubs as my skin tends to get dehydrated very quickly due to the dryness and heat.
Garnier Neem Pure Active facewash: This was so refreshing to use and so light on the skin. The consistency is very gel like and tt cleanses like a dream and I’ve been using it regularly!

Garnier Apricot exfoliating scrub: This feels quite soft and even. Exfoliates well and is not harsh on the skin (which is a must for me!). Although the smell is yummy, it’s does get a bit too strong for my taste.

 

Trousers, Crop top, necklace – myntra.com | Shoes: Max fashion

Check out the post on Rohita’s blog as well here!

Advertisements

Bloom

Coffee, Fashion, Look of the Day
Orange has never been one of my favorite colors, rather it’s been one of those ‘ignored’ colors for some reason. But with each progressing day of summer I’m turning to shades of orange, coral, peach more and more. I know people always say white is the color of summer but, for me, bright has always been the color for spring and summer. This orange high-lo dress has been waiting to make it’s debut at a possible beach side summer vacation, but seeing that as usual, my vacation plans have been postponed, I decided to wear it already. I am currently obsessed with pairing dresses, slit dresses, t-shirt dresses etc. with jeans, and I went with the same style for a coffee date! I know that at any time of the year and day I would be up for traveling, and in fact that’s one of the main things that I keep on talking about on the blog (and complaining some times) but right now, I wouldn’t mind if my travel plans, dreams get postponed a bit more. I am in one of the best phases of life professionally and personally. April has been a roller coaster of a ride with extreme highs, and am really excited to be working on some of my dream projects that have been in the pipeline for a long time, and I can’t wait to reveal more about all of that! The title of this post is exactly how I am looking at my life right now. Blooming in every aspect and every direction. All that’s left to do is work my a** off, never lose focus and take time to stop and smell the flowers!

Dress: Code | Jeans: Levis | Bag: NewLook | Shoes: Catwalk | Earrings: oasap.com

Indian August

collaboration, Fashion, Indian wear, Look of the Day, summer
Summer breeze in the air, long drives into the sunset, open fields, lying on the grass and reading books, long maxi dresses, the golden hour of sunset. I love clothes that inspire you to come up with themes and Indian August is one such brand that does exactly that. Something about the name Indian August makes me think of summer rains, old rickety swings, getting blown away by the wind while the sky thunders above you – a very bohemian, care free vibe that inspired me to come up with this look. A chance happening brought us to this quaint little park that formed the perfect setting for this shoot. So much so that I think I quite enjoyed just sitting around and becoming engrossed in my book, while my photographer did all the work!

Indian August has a range of products that includes clothing and apparel, home textiles and decor. With a focus on Indian contemporary designs, they have under their roof more than 25 designers and master craftsmen who bring to you the most elegant and contemporary designs. The eclectic use of traditional fabrics like chanderi, mangalgiri for Western outfits like ankle length pants and trousers was something right up my alley. The Khadi and kalamkari skirts were another favorite of mine. They also have an enviable collection of the cutest, quirkiest home decor. When I move in to my own place, you can expect it to be a mini shrine to this store! Another favorite of mine is of course their jewelry – exquisitely handcrafted dokra necklaces and earrings that I could wear every day. For my look I chose a comfortable and bright cotton maxi dress perfect for the weather here. Instead of going for the obvious choice of black accessories, I chose this pink Dokra necklace/earrings set which I think compliments this outfit perfectly.

This had to be the laziest shoot ever (well for me!) where all I had to do was walk around, settle down on the grass with a good book, and prance around during the golden hour of sunset!

Dress, bag, earrings, necklace: eindianaugust.com | Shoes: Steve Madden

Photography & Editing by: Divya Medikonda

Desi Girl

Fashion, hyderabad, indian fashion blog, Indian wear, Look of the Day, Styling
Every once in a while I tend to come back to my Indian roots and desi dressing. In fact I would say it’s quite often! As much as I enjoy the comfort of a jeans and a tshirt or the feminine and flirty look of a lace dress, I would always always say that there is nothing as elegant and graceful as Indian wear. More than half the Indian population still dresses in a traditional attire so I never understand why as fashion bloggers we rarely feature Indian clothes on our blogs. As an Indian fashion blogger, I make it a point to include Indian wear as part of every day dressing and not just as festive wear or special occasion wear as most project it to be. Having grown up in a comparatively conservative city like Hyderabad, all of my college years were spent in churidars. My working years too were mostly in Indian formals, as that was the most obvious choice for the sweltering heat in the city!

When online shopping became a buzz a few years back, the options for western wear and International brands kept multiplying and soon you didn’t have to look beyond your laptop to have the latest trends and styles delivered to your doorstep. Up until then I was still going to my favorite local shops, buying vibrant prints of materials, mixing and matching prints, designing my own kurtas and blouses and trusting my local tailor to deliver the best stitched suits for everyday wear and festive wear. But with the new surge of online shopping sites for Indian wear that stock up on every kind of design, shopping for Indian wear has taken a whole new direction. Whether you are living abroad or living in India, getting your hands on sarees, lehengas and kurtas has never been easier. One such website that offers a great selection of designs along with customization options is CBazaar.

For this particular look, I wanted to play with different Indian accents that could be worn on an everyday basis. White is always an artist’s favorite color as it provides the perfect canvas to throw on splashes of color. Bandhani (tie-dye) dupattas need no introduction at all. The crinkled fabrics with vivid dramatic colors come in so many playful patterns. There is a whole lot of meticulous process involved in creating them and each pattern has a given name and is usually worn for a specific occasion. I had picked this pair of mojaris while street shopping in Pune, and although this is the first instance that I am wearing them I already have tons of ideas for remixing them with both Indian and Western wear. Finished my look with a pair of sliver jhumkas, a few bangles and a printed cloth bag for an evening spent walking around stalls, satiating my visual appetite and getting inspired with all the crafts, colors and designs around me.

So the next time you reach out to wear your pencil skirt or your skinny jeans, give it a miss at least once in a while and instead go the desi route. Don’t restrict yourself to wearing it only for festivals or weddings. We have a riot of colorful options that can look just as classy and trendy as a western outfit, so go exploit them to the fullest and be proud of wearing Indian attire! And in case you need a serious wardrobe update, don’t forget to check out Cbazaar for their various options!

the girl at first avenue, top indian fashion blog, traditional wear indian blog, best indian fashion blog, bandhani churidar indian fashion blog

top indian fashion blog, indian wear, traditional wear the girl at first avenue,

indian fashion blog, tradional wear, white churidar indian fashoion blog, top indian fashion blog

mojaris indian fashion blog, colorful clothes indian fashion blog, indian traditional wear fashion blog, top indian fashion blog

best indian fashion blog, bandhani dupatta indian fashion blog, top indian fashion blog
chandana munipalle blog, the girl at first avenue blog, indian traditional wear fashion blog, mojaris indian fashion blog
top indian fashion blog, traditional wear indian fashion blog, white churidar bandhani indian fashion blog

top 20 indian fashion blogs, best indian fashion blog, indian fashion silver jhumkis
Dress: Stitched by local tailor | Bag: Shilparamam | Earrings and Mojaris: FC road Pune

Photography: Divya Medikonda

Valentine who?

Fashion, Look of the Day, oasap, valentines day, weekend
Valentine’s day has successfully made the transition from being just a ‘day’ to a full fledged festival. Love it or hate it, you simply can’t ignore it. While hindutva groups try to ‘preserve’ our Indian culture by  trying to squish out this dangerous festival-that-must-not-be-named (because it has been adopted from western culture you-know-where), their purpose is more or less lost in the ensuing chaos. Those who celebrate it still go on celebrating, those who have the “why have only one day to celebrate love?” attitude take the high road, while those who are making money out of this entire fiasco are having a jolly good laugh while jingling their money bags. So really, what is it that we are trying to achieve here?

Some debates are never ending. I like to pick and choose my battles and I don’t see any good coming out of fighting for it or fighting against it. In the end, celebrating (or not) is as much a personal choice as celebrating your birthday. So, being a fashion blogger, I did the next best thing that I could do, which is to style a couple of Valentine’s Day looks for you guys. The hot debate here is always whether wearing red has become too passé or if it’s still fashionable to be decked in hearts and reds. I would say wear whatever the hell you want. Fashion has no rules, and if black is your thing, by all means go ahead and rock that!

 Look 1

Black is usually my answer to all my outfit dilemmas, but even I couldn’t escape the mushiness in the air and I gave in to wearing my heart on my sleeve (body? torso?) for this one day. I received the cutest heart print blouse from oasap.com which was perfect for pairing over my favorite burgundy jeans. I din’t go all out ‘red’ but decided to stick to shades of it, and of course added my favorite pair of sparkly heels. This is really a fuss free, easy, day time look that doesn’t require too much planning or thought. 

chandana indian fashion blogger, top indian fashion blogger, top 20 fashion blogs, the girl at first avenue, heart print oasap top, heart print tops valentines day

the girl at first avenue, top indian fashion blog, top 20 fashion blogs india, heart print top valentines day, oasap valentines day

heart print top, valentines day tops, top indian fashion blogger, chandana the girl at first avenue

Look 2
For the second look, I still wanted to keep it simple yet dressy. Maxi skirts shall remain my absolute favorite for a long time to come. I layered a couple of gold necklaces over a crop top for a subtle dressy look. The soft and flow-y fabric of the skirt gives it a very feminine feel and although my plans for this Valentine’s day involve eating cupcakes and spending the weekend catching up on my reading, this is something that I would definitely wear for an early dinner!

top indian fashion blog, blue maxi skirt indian fashion blog, valentines day dress indian fashion blog

oasap blue maxi skirt, top indian fashionb log, valentines day dress, best indian fashion blog, chandana top indian fashion blogger

top indian fashion blogger, valentines day outfit, best indian fashion blog, oasap blue maxi skirt

best indian fashion blog, the girl at first avenue top blogger india, oasap blue maxi skirt, valentines day indian fashion blogger
Look 1 { Jeans: Kraus | Top: oasap.com (buy here) | Shoes: Dorothy Perkinds via jabong.com }
Look 2 { Skirt: oasap (buy here) | Necklace: oasap (buy here), Top: forever21 | Clutch: NewLook via koovs.com | Shoes: jabong.com }

#LikeABoss

Fashion, Look of the Day, stalkbuylove, Styling
Hello #GirlBoss! Yes, you reading this sentence right now. You are a #GirlBoss aren’t you? Have you read Sophia Amoruso’s book #GirlBoss? It’s been one of the most talked about books in recent times so you must have. Even if you haven’t there must have been a couple of selfies here and there with the book strategically placed to be in the frame. Or next to your drink on the beach. Because that’s what real girl bosses do. Go to the beach, chill out with a drink in hand and read books that inspire you to build multimillion dollar companies. I admit I’ve been guilty of the same! So the book has been ripped apart from every angle by critics, some saying the hashtag tells its own sad story of being a ‘Girl Boss’ instead of a ‘Boss’, others showering praises over the fun, self-deprecating and self-aware author. Keeping all that aside, the essence of #GirlBoss still hits you strong. No I’m not claiming it will transform you overnight or that brilliant ideas will strike you at midnight or that you will somehow build yourself a multimillion dollar empire. But you will teach yourself to do stuff you don’t know instead of hiring someone to do it for you. You will stand up for your beliefs even if the whole world is against you. You will realize there is nothing wrong in asking for a helping hand. You will start to feel like a #GirlBoss and then then soon enough, start acting like one.

I was trying to channel my inner #GirlBoss (or just #Boss if its pleases you!) with this look and styling. Confident, independent, knows what she wants from life and is not afraid to go get it. Yes, we all falter, we have our moments of curling up in bed with a bag of potato chips, favorite tv show and refusing to get up until the universe gives up on plotting against us. But once a #GirlBoss always a #GirlBoss and eventually we bounce back.

I am being drawn to everything black and white these days. Probably because they form the perfect canvas to add a bit of color and sparkle. A tiny pop of orange made all the difference in the world to this monochrome look. Sometimes you just want a hassle free, no-nonsense outfit with no chunky necklaces or earrings or bracelets. Body chains are the perfect alternative for such occasions – you have jewelry on, but it really doesn’t get in your way! I just added my favorite pair of heels and a printed bag to complete the look and am ready to conquer the world #LikeABoss!

p.s – This post has been submitted for the “A style of my own” contest hosted by Women’s Web and Trishla emart

stalkbuy love black and white jumpsuit, styling a jumpsuit, indian fashion blog, best indian fashion blog, the girl at first avenue fashion blog, top mumbai fashion blog 
stalkbuy love black and white jumpsuit, styling a jumpsuit, indian fashion blog, best indian fashion blog, the girl at first avenue fashion blog, top mumbai fashion blog

stalkbuy love black and white jumpsuit, styling a jumpsuit, indian fashion blog, best indian fashion blog, the girl at first avenue fashion blog, top mumbai fashion blog, stalkbuylove animal print sling bag

stalkbuy love black and white jumpsuit, styling a jumpsuit, indian fashion blog, best indian fashion blog, the girl at first avenue fashion blog, top mumbai fashion blog, forever21 body chain, body chain online india

stalkbuy love black and white jumpsuit, styling a jumpsuit, indian fashion blog, best indian fashion blog, the girl at first avenue fashion blog, top mumbai fashion blog, steve madden shoes, steve madden india black heels

Jumpsuit, Bag: StalkBuyLove | Body chain: Forever21 | Shoes: SteveMadden | Blazer: Gifted
Photography by: Divya Medikonda

Purple and Gold

indian fashion blog, koovs, Look of the Day, oasap, sale
The sale season fever seems to have struck every single person that I know! Be it fashion lovers or gadget freaks, the only talk I hear all around me is of slashed prices, most coveted products and deals that are too good to be missed. I usually always stay away from the sale season for the simple fact that I don’t trust myself around any label that says 70% off! But after two years of not shopping during sales and getting my wardrobe to a state where I use almost every piece of clothing multiple times, I thought it was a good time to get back into the game! I’m a sucker for plaid and checkered shirts and I could live in them practically my whole life and never get bored of them. I think I am well on my way to collecting them in every color available. These cute metallic gold loafers were another sale find. I rarely ever find closed shoes that are comfortable on my feet and I always prefer buying only sandals but this pair is the comfiest ever! Lastly the studded sling back with tassels happens to be one of my favorite purchases. The first half of January has come at me with full force – a lot of new opportunities, decisions and work to be done. If the rest year of the year continues this way then no complaints from me! There are also going to be a couple of changes on the blog front, so stay tuned!
 

Shirt: koovs.com | Shoes: Ginger (Lifestyle stores) | Jeans: Recap | Bag: oasap.com (buy here) | Earrings: Accessorize

Maandna

collaboration, Fashion, indian fashion blog, Look of the Day, maandna, new year, Styling
January always reminds me of spring and bright colors. Being in South India is equivalent to having practically no winters at all, except for a short span of a month or two. This month is definitely my favorite as it still retains a bit of chill factor and lovely foggy mornings, without the numbing, uncomfortable cold of December. Light layering, bright colors, iced drinks in the afternoons and hot drinks in the evenings is what January is made of! And of course the new year, the fresh start, new plans and all that excitement associated with it (which of course lasts a very short while when we quickly realize that this year is no better or worse than the previous one!).

In keeping with my mood, I decided to wear this bright and cheerful tunic, with tassels in the front,  from Maandna. It’s a recently launched brand on Flipkart, with very comfortable silhouettes and peppy warm colors. I’ve never been into over the top clothing whether for casual wear or festivities, and Maandna with it’s pure cotton & gold khadi print tunics, fits the bill perfectly! I specially loved this and this for the carefully crafted mirror work and embroidery. All their embroidery work is done by desert artisans of Bikaner. Although their collection is limited in number, they have made up for it by making sure that every single piece from their collection is something you would want to buy. I would any day prefer that than to search through a hundred pieces and narrow down on one!

I wanted to make this a cheerful post and what better way to spread cheer than through flowers! And since I am still hungover last month’s get-togethers and celebrations, it just made sense to prolong the holiday mood by adding a bit of sparkle with these copper toned heels and a fancy box clutch.

p.s – Welcome on board for another year of fashion, travel and style inspiration! This first post is dedicated to YOU guys (clearly the below picture indicates!)

Tunic: Maandna | Trousers: c/o Lifestyle | Earrings: oasap.com | Box clutch: Local boutique | 
Heels: Dorothy Perkins via jabong.com

The end and the beginning

Look of the Day, Musings, new year
I usually don’t like taking long breaks from the blog, but December was such a busy month (if you’ve been following me on instagram you’ll know why) that I couldn’t set aside any time for blogging. But I decided to end the year by sharing a look that we shot almost three months back. I didn’t need to think at all for this outfit. I just picked all my favorite pieces and threw them together and came up with this messy hair (I blame the humid seaside weather) fusion look.

I don’t believe in new year resolutions, but I did make some (for lack of a better word) plans for the coming year and I can’t wait to see how they go! This year has been great for my blog in terms of collaborations, features in magazines and all the opportunities that have come my way and am hoping for even better experiences in the coming year. Thanks for reading my blog, for all the comments and all the support. Let’s continue the journey!

Skirt: Street shopping (Hyderabad) | Shirt: Forever21 | Shoes & earrings: Local boutique | Necklace: Myntra.com

The labour colony

Fashion, grunge, indian fashion blog, leather vest, Look of the Day, max fashion, Styling
I’ve always maintained that fashion & styling for me, are like a blank canvas waiting to be filled up with your vivid imagination and wild ideas. You can tell any story you want, become any character you desire, and look like a million bucks without actually spending much. Last week I was invited to the Max fashion store at Hyderabad, to pick and style a few pieces from their recently launched Winter Collection. The store has been surprising me with every visit with their International trends at affordable prices and the rate at which new products are being churned out every few weeks.

My style has always leaned towards the ‘casual and laid back’ side, but this time after browsing through the collection I wanted to do something very different. As a blogger and an artist I have a constant stream of visual story telling ideas buzzing through my mind, and sometimes the outfit, the backdrop, the styling, the theme and the photography – it all falls into place like a perfectly written story.

A pair of printed pants and a stunning faux leather vest formed the base for this outfit. Once the base is sorted, you are free to mold, sculpt and shape your look to perfection in any way you please. After browsing through my accessory collection, and a brainstorming session with my photographer, we decided to do a tough grunge look while still retaining a bit of femininity and grace, with the color black, being the main focus. I personally find it fascinating how dressing a certain way can bring out certain traits and characteristics in your behavior, that are associated with that particular look. The texture of the vest, the sharp angles of the necklace adding a toughness to the look and the skinny printed pants, the casual ease of sunglasses on your head providing the much needed feminine balance!

Leather jackets/vests make a statement no matter how you wear them. I am strictly against pure leather, but here are some tips on styling a faux leather vest:

  • Make it an all black or shades of grey/black look like the one am wearing
  • Style it over maxi dresses to toughen up the look a bit
  • Try a different shade of faux leather like burgundy or dark blue instead of black
  • Wear it on white or any light colored tops & dresses for a contrast

Visual story telling is an art, and I think we’ve achieved more than what we could hope for while styling and shooting for this look. Waking up at 5am for this was totally worth it! 

grunge look, mumbai fashion blog, best indian fashion blog, leather jacket look, max fashion styling, max winter collection

top indian fashion blog, hyderabad fashion blog, max fashion winter collection, hyderabad fashion blog, hitech city fashion hyderabad, top mumbai blogger
indian fashion blog, top mumbai fashion blogger, max fashion winter blog, grunge tough look women

divya medikonda photography, insync photography hyderabad, mumbai fashion blogger, top indian fashion blog
(faux) leather vest & pant: Max fashions | Shoes: Catwalk | Sunglasses and necklace: Forever21
Photography by: Divya Medikonda’s Perspective

Share your views on Facebook & Instagram