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Four looks in four shades offer a fresh take on celebration

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Festivals in India, without exception, are almost always about colour—a lot of it. Typically, though, we tend to navigate among the tried and the tested shades that have always been the go-to choice for celebrations—pinks, yellows, or a combination of both. Consider for a moment if the colour palette that has come to define festivities is upended and expanded to include an as-yet untapped spectrum. Renowned wedding planner and founder of the Wedding Design Company, Vandana Mohan did just that. She designed four distinct festive décor looks that dipped into an unusual palette which was expressed through diverse materials and well-chosen fresh flowers. This can be your festival décor idea mood board to evoke celebration through an understated aesthetic, subtle design touches and unique colours.

Rubaab: For Rubaab, Mohan skirted the fringes of a more traditionally festive shade, red, to create a look that was centred on an Indian theme. “Gold and red are inherently Indian shades.” Those colours were offset with Indian flowers like rajnigandha (tuberose) and mogra (Jasmine). “The gold came through with brass-finished accessories and we layered it with a lot of brocade cushions. The idea was to create a very festive look.”

A living room styled for Diwali with a brown sofa, brass diya stands and brass vases

Red and gold get a touch of understated elegance in this festive look designed by Mohan.

Verdant: This was all about bringing the outdoors in. “We used a lot of plants and combined them with colourful cushions with covers made out of amazing textiles from various saris. There is also a lovely phulkari chair. The flowers we used were the white daisy, like someone would decorate their own home. We wanted to go subtle and fresh and evoke a laid-back vibe. This has a very Indo-Chic bohemian sensibility.” 

A corner of a room with a colourful chair, spread around it are colourful cushions and a dog sitting on a rug

Get the outdoors in with a fresh, laid-back vibe and surround yourself with greenery and chic shades.

Indigo: Blue made for an elegant shade in which to colour the space. “Everything was in indigo. We had cushion in indigo, as well as lovely jars and glassware in the same shade.” The pop of colour came through with yellow and white—yellow chrysanthemums and white baby’s breath.”

A living room with a beige sofa, along with indigo and grey cushions, Indigo vases, candles with stands and flowers

A cool blue palette is embellished with a burst of yellow flowers makes for an inspiring choice of colours for celebrations this season.

Serendipity: An unexpected, yet welcome combination of colours, material and fresh flowers led to the creation of two table settings.

One featured a combination of blue and yellow. The tableware was dominated by blue pottery—“we largely used blue jars and plates and complimented them with bright yellow marigolds”. The yellow popped through in some of the smaller plates as well.

The other table setting was a tasteful amalgamation of silver and porcelain tableware with the boldly red local, seasonal cockscomb flowers offering a dramatic counterpoint to the set-up. 

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