As the Once Upon A Tea Time blog has evolved, my interest has shifted more from beautiful homes to encompass beautiful homes and the amazing, creative people living in them. Their stories, what influenced them and why. I’ve always felt that the home is a window into the soul of the person that lives there. Today’s tour is of a Mumbai apartment and the home belongs to Rukmini Ray Kadam, an editor, journalist and writer. She is also an all-round creative who runs TruMatter, a blog that features arts, design and DIY as well as a showcase for Rukmini’s writing skills. Her Mumbai apartment is very distinct in its style- there is nothing of the city’s modern-day frenetic pace in here. Inside you find a calm and spacious refuge, created by the serene, white color palette and by the distinct lack of clutter.
“My name is Rukmini Ray Kadam and I blog from our tiny, city apartment in Navi Mumbai, where I live with my husband. My home mimics the relaxed style and design nuances of a beach house, and marries it with pops of colour and vintage design elements to achieve a style that I rightfully call India Chic. Give me some white paint and I will conquer the world!
A lot of people trace my home and home style to European influences, but it’s simply an extension of how my grandmother designed our home in Kolkata, peppered with my own sensibilities. Checkered floors, curvy chairs, light, breezy interiors and a touch of brass- her house was my first design muse. Needless to say, I grew up in good-looking homes. When I moved to Mumbai, I missed my home terribly. I missed the secure feeling of coming ‘home’, I missed the greens and the weekend DIYs: I was suffocated in this concrete jungle doing a job I didn’t like, and staying in a place that never made me feel like home. At that time, I was sharing accommodations with 3 girls in a 1-room+kitchen. I moved solo after that to the un-happening side of the city, Navi Mumbai (New Mumbai). You know, there are “Navi Mumbai is so far that I’d rather live in Pune” jokes, but I am glad I made the move. Staying by the creek, looking at the hills and having a home to myself. To finally make it look like a house and not a mess: I started to turn my apartment into the beach house of my dreams 1 project at a time and the rest is as you see.
“One weekend, my husband, who I was then dating, and I decided to visit a beach hotel, a little far from main town Bombay. Built by a retired Navy officer, the resort was little cottages built on the beach. Built in simple blues (I later knew it was beach blue), and surrounded by palms and bougainvillea- this was it! I sat on one of those Adirondack chairs, and gazed at the sea for the longest time. I realized that I would love to live in a beach house for the rest of my life, and that my home in the hills was built in a beach themed fashion. And all my life I thought it was the essence of my home! Suddenly, I wanted to stay in here, in this coastal city for the rest of my life. And to this day, I carry forward the same sentiment.”
Inspiration and Influences
“The deep blues, azure and sea foam. The washed greys of driftwood and the chalky creams of shells. A bit of sailor’s rope and a tiny bit of jute with a whole lot of cool white- coastal floats my boat! From young, ice-creamy pastels to deep indigo, moss and terracotta- my colour preferences, fabric preferences and design sensibilities have changed quite a bit over the years, but what’s never going to change is my love for cool whites and beach houses!” – Rukmini Ray Kadam
You can find and follow Rukmini on her blog Trumatter. Read about why she chose that particular name and all the other creative ventures she is part of. Have a fantastic day!
All images are courtesy of Rukmini Ray Kadam.