Namaskar | The Bindi Chronicles • India

The past two weeks I have noticed the Indian flag copiously waving all over New York City.  An upcoming #facemaidcapade this winter to Mumbai could be fueling the observation; either way my Bollywood third- eye is open, and reflecting on my first experience of India.

Fourteen hours of in-flight anticipation fueled nervousness from unknown expectations, neither high, nor low, that I may be forever changed, hopefully. We were welcomed with love, and leis, and although science fiction brought me here, I would leave, enlightened in gratitude, by a culture whose depth rivals its border’s ocean, in bold, embellished, vibrant color, steeped in tradition, faith, and karma.

The alpha personality of the cuisine…the fragrance of jasmine flirting with olfactory senses…the children who run, play, and live joyously, without reason; honored simply to be captured on film…the result of experiencing this joy, was a life edit on gratitude.

I’ll be honest, the poverty can be, and often was, overwhelming for me. Considering the many opportunities I have been afforded in my own life, to say witnessing such conditions was impactful is an understatement. As such I was left with an intense emotional confliction.

Still, I wanted to share the fleeting moments that brought me the most joy…

Namaste,

FACEMAID

…I bow to you...

…I bow to you…

 

 

…The beginning of my love affair with jasmine...

…The beginning of my love affair with jasmine…

…Qutub Minar...

…Qutub Minar…

…Qutub Minar...

…Qutub Minar…

…Diamond Third-Eye...

…Diamond Third-Eye…

…Future Facemaid, free-handing henna, her way...

…Future Facemaid, free-handing henna, her way…

…And then I discovered Rumi, and everything changed...

…And then I discovered Rumi, and everything changed…

…Namaskar...

…Namaskar…

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Pula, Pula | The Croatian Kronike, Part 1

The historical layers of Croatia are deep and peppered with war; yet the physical beauty remains…Today I’m celebrating the city of Pula

The dominant religion in Croatia is Roman Catholicism and beautiful church steeples can be found peeking above the signature coral rooftops throughout the countryside. Croatian women proved to master an emphasis on modesty with layers of white on white on white, adorned with statements of gold, as the traditional Croatian dress, simplified. Blue, red, white, and gold accessories celebrate the country flag; in color. I was inspired by vintage Croatian fashion, with hints of current trend…folk, speckled hints of glamour.

…In my mind, Pula personified, is male…a soldier of multiple wars; a survivor of battle, with scars to match; weathered and gritty, but still distinguished, in the way wrinkles add character to a man his age.  He is infused with Italian influences in language and cuisine; as Venice lies a mere three hours away. Streets are illuminated by the light of sunset, from a storm minutes long, minutes before…One can only wonder what the energy felt like one hundred years ago.  The coliseum is massive and intense…We imagined what animals, or prisoners, if any, were held in the individual cement cells…What must the sounds have been?  It was gladiator-esque…

Ljubav {love}, from Pula…

Facemaid

 

…a yawning sun…#iwokeuplikethis

…a yawning sun…#iwokeuplikethis

 

…Style Inspiration...

…Style Inspiration…

…Hydrating with Hello Kitty...

…Hydrating with Hello Kitty…

…Lean Back…The calm, before the Storm...

…Lean Back…The calm, before the Storm…

…Amen… {Photo: Casey Levine}

…Amen…
{Photo: Casey Levine}

…Koloseum...

…Koloseum…

…Caught in the Coliseum...

…Caught in the Coliseum…

…Don't Believe Me Just Watch {Tower}...

…Don’t Believe Me Just Watch {Tower}…

…Twirl… Skirt:  Urban Outfitters Blouse:  J. Crew Scarf:  Vintage, from my Paris Travels

…Twirl…
Skirt: Urban Outfitters
Blouse: J. Crew
Scarf: Vintage, from my Paris Travels

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…A Love Supreme|Part Une…

…And my heart knew

The impact of Paris on me was immediate, and permanent. An unknown, unrecognizable feeling of richness…like being dipped in gold and drizzled with butter. The beauty in the details of all that is beautiful…architecture, cuisine, language, art, fashion… It made me want more, of less.

Richard Wright once said, ‘The effect of Paris is deep. Paris does something to one and what it does is good.’

It inspires chic, embraces glamour, appreciates grandeur…  I often style myself in neutral palettes…in dress and beauty…layers of white, taupe, noir…in an effort to not compete with the allure of the city…

Mmmmm… Alluring it is!!  The City of Lights, and its romantic splendor. Where the simple hope of love lingers with each turn of a corner. On a solo trip last year,  I found the common denominator of every conversation I had, was love…finding it, losing it, making it, sharing it…

If Paris were a woman, she would be enchantingly beautiful; one could not help but stare at her.  Her temperament, laced with peeks of sun, followed by moments of rain…seductive and coy, she would embrace and reject you in a fleeting moment, and still, love would remain.

 

A Love Supreme.

Mesmerized by Versailles...

Mesmerized by Versailles…

...Behind every door...

…Behind every door…

…Have A Seat...

…Have A Seat…

…French finds at the Paris Flea...

…French finds at the Paris Flea…

...Baby, In The Corner… Dress: Haute Hippie Shoe:  Tania Spinelli

…Baby, In The Corner…
Dress: Haute Hippie
Shoe: Tania Spinelli

The sexiness that is the lounge at Maison Atheneé...

The sexiness that is the lounge at Maison Atheneé…

…Oppulence, courtesy of Versailles...

…Oppulence, courtesy of Versailles…

…She's such a flirt...

…She’s such a flirt…

 

 

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Azul and Shucran… مرحبا وشكرا…Hello and Thank You…

The soothing hum from the rose peppered fountain of the Riad Joya, entwined with the Call to Prayer gives way to the melody of life in Marrakech…I knew before embarking on this North African journey, that my first desire was to embrace and respect the culture. Inspired by tradition, and with an unassuming approach, I opted to cover my body, and hair, often atypical of Western traditions.

Vintage caftans and silk scarves from previous French travels, juxtaposed with the vigor of a strong smokey eye, and I was Moroccan ready- Facemaid style…

My affinity for bathtubs enhanced when dipped in copper- the tub that is!

My affinity for bathtubs enhanced when dipped in copper- the tub that is!

Woody, earthy, musky, all-natural Black Soap…

Woody, earthy, musky, all-natural Black Soap…

The calming courtyard of the Riad Joya where I journaled during my stay...

The calming courtyard of the Riad Joya where I journaled during my stay…

Riad Joya courtyard

Riad Joya…Home away from home.

Making New Friends, one rug at a time…

Making New Friends, one rug at a time…

Traditional Moroccan Mint Tea, known also as Atay, served while magic carpet shopping…

Traditional Moroccan Mint Tea, known also as Atay, served while magic carpet shopping…

Street art of an Icon...

Street art of an Icon…

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