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Kokedama: Japanese Art Of Growing Plants On A Moss Ball

Kokedama is a Japanese art of growing plant on a Moss ball. Word Kokedama translates like this

Koke: Moss Dama: Ball
It is also known as poor man’s bonsai. 
Moss Ball
Kokedama in my balcony garden

Recently, I tried to make Kokedama for the first time and I loved the fact that it doesn’t require any pot to grow the plants. Just make a ball of soil and moss and grow tiny plants on it. Kokedama can be hung or kept on a desk or floor indoors as well as outdoors. To watch the complete video on my YouTube channel, you can click here.

Things you’ll need to make Kokedama:

  • Compost – 1 part
  • Coco Peat – 1 part
  • Garden Soil – 1/2 part
  • Tray/bowl to mix ingredients
  • Scissors
  • Gardening Gloves
  • Sphagnum Moss 
  • Ornamental Plants
  • Water
  • String/Twine/Yarn

                   

SUBSTITUTES-
Now there is no need to worry if you don’t get all the supplies. Here are the substitutes:
Instead of compost + Cocopeat + Soil, you can take just Bonsai soil + Coco peat OR Garden Soil and mix sand in a small amount.
Instead of Sphagnum moss, you can use moss stick or coco coir or jute or anything that holds moisture for a long.

                    

PLANTS For KOKEDAMA:
Choose the plants that love moisture as Kokedama is a ball of moss that retains moisture. Basically, all the plants that grow on moss are perfect for Kokedama. Though you can experiment with all the plants. As long as you know the light and water requirement of the plants and hang them in a suitable place and water them accordingly, you can grow just about any plant on Kokedama. The best ones are Fern, Ivy, Lucky bamboo, Spider plant, Syngonium. Succulents hate moisture so avoid using them but if you are not watering Kokedama too often then you give it a try.

                     

1. Start by soaking the moss in water. Till it soaks, mix all the components together(compost + Cocopeat + Soil) thoroughly and then slowly add water until all the components adhere together. Now take some soil in hands and form a sphere. Squeeze out excess water and once the soil ball is ready, keep it aside.

Kokedama tutorial
Mix all the components together

Kokedama Tutorial
Make a ball of soil
2. Spread a plastic sheet on the work area and then take out wet moss from the water. Wring it to remove water and then spread the moss on the plastic sheet. Remember that green part of moss faces down as later it will appear on the outer side of the ball. I didn’t get Sphagnum moss sheet so I used moss stick and took out all the moss that it had. Though the moss was all dried and the moss stick also had a lot of coco coir inside but it really doesn’t matter as moss is used because it retains moisture and that’s what exactly coco coir will do too.

3. Now take out the plant from the pot. Loosen the soil around the root. Make sure you are not damaging root ball or disturbing root system. Now crack open the soil ball into two halves like shown in the image below and then place the roots carefully in the centre. Now make the ball of soil again and if required you can add some more soil at this stage to make a perfect sphere.

Kokedama Tutorial

Kokedama Tutorial

4. Place this ball of soil on the moss that we prepared in the second step. Gently pick up the plastic sheet from all the sides and press firmly to wrap the moss around the soil ball. Make sure that moss adheres to the soil ball.

Kokedama Tutorial

5. Now take a twine or string and wrap it around the moss ball in a random fashion and secure the ends by tieing the knots. Now attach a string on the top of the moss ball and there you have it. Kokedama is ready to enhance the beauty of your garden.

How To Make Kokedama

To water Kokedama all you need to do is just use a sprayer and spray water until you see water dripping from the sphere. Or alternatively, you can place Kokedama in a bowl full of water for 2-3 mins and then take it out. Water Kokedama every alternate day or according to plant’s need. If it is succulent then you can skip watering for 8-10 days.

          

Kokedama tutorial

So making Kokedama is not a big deal. It requires minimal skill and very few supplies. I hope you like the tutorial. Be little more creative and try to make it different shapes, sizes and colours.
Happy Gardening!!!
Stay tuned and till then connect with me here:

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Indian Balcony Decor: Preeti Deshmukh

In our fast-paced life, all we need is a space in our homes where we can relax and unwind. Tiny or huge, our balconies can serve that purpose very well. Balcony does more than just add to the aesthetics of your home. It gives you the opportunity to maximize your living space, it can be a romantic nook, another dining spot, a place to relax, read or chill with friends. 

I have a guest on my blog today who not only utilized her balcony space wisely but also turned it into a small retreat. Preeti Deshmukh from Nashik is with us today and she’ll be telling us how she transformed her balcony into a beautiful relaxing spot and that too on a low budget.

Balcony Decor Ideas
It was my dream to have a big balcony in my home so when we were planning to buy an apartment, well-ventilated rooms and a space for relaxation was our first priority. We were fortunate that we found a spacious flat with a huge balcony attached to the living room and a separate utility area attached to the kitchen where I can hang clothes to dry.
Balcony Decor Ideas
The first thing that Preeti decided was the theme of her balcony and it was “traditional Indian”. Next up was a seating arrangement and Preeti had an astounding idea of putting up a swing. She adds,
Since the theme was traditional, swing or Chaupala was a perfect addition to my balcony. So I got it custom made and added beautiful cushions to create a  pleasing and comfortable sit out on the balcony.”

Balcony Decor Ideas
Next step was to perk up the dull looking walls and keeping the traditional Indian theme in mind, Preeti decided to do Warli painting on the walls. But executing this idea wasn’t that easy for her. This is what she shared, 
“The idea of painting Warli art was quite fascinating but I wasn’t confident enough to do it myself so I asked my sister-in-law who not only paints well but is a skilled calligrapher too. She liked the idea and was ready to help me.”
Balcony Decor Ideas
“We knew nothing about Warli art so we did a lot of research, read about the art form on the internet, visited some places where Warli was done and took photographs for reference. But then we didn’t know anything about what kind of paint we should be using. Then my cousin Shweta Deshmukh who is an architect and lives in Pune came to our rescue. She gave us all the technical knowledge which was necessary to start our Warli project and we were good to go now.” 
Balcony Decor Ideas
As you must have read my previous blogs on Warli or might have watched my video tutorial on Warli painting, I have mentioned that Warli painting depicts the social life of Warli tribe. So keeping this fact in mind Preeti and her sister-in-law painted day-to-day activities of village people. 
“We painted Sun, Vasudev, Tulsi puja to illustrate morning scene in a typical village on one wall and painted moon, men returning to home from fields, a lady cooking food etc.to portray the dusk hours on another wall.”
Balcony Decor Ideas
“As Warli painting also depicts celebrations so we decided to paint a scene of a wedding ceremony on another wall where we showed a groom mounted on a horse and a coy bride sitting in a palanquin and everyone else is dancing and enjoying. Painting Warli on the entire parapet wall and a part of balcony wall was really a tough job but then my family and relatives helped me a lot through out the painting project.” 

Warli Painting

After the Warli project was done, it was time to add accessories and to make the entire balcony come alive. Preeti shares,
“I bought accessories like masks, lamp, parrot and giraffe planter for my balcony from an exhibition. Hanging bells I bought from Pune.”

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You can buy the Giraffe planter & Masks here 
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Balcony Decor Ideas
Preeti is a plant lover and has a big green thumb. She has planted a variety of plants in her balcony. She even created a fairy garden.

Balcony Decor Ideas

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Create your own miniature garden:
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She is so creative when it comes to reusing, recycling or up-cycling a stuff. Using her son’s broken study desk and some pebbles, she created a beautiful piece of art that you see in below picture. Now you know you just need to look around with your keen eyes to unearth the hidden treasure that you already have in your home.

Balcony Decor Ideas

Balcony Decor Ideas

With a proper plan and careful execution of it, Preeti was successful in creating the most relaxing and dreamy balcony space for herself that she had dreamed of once upon a time. 

Balcony Decor Ideas

Transformation of a dull and stark balcony space into an irresistible outdoor retreat was not an easy task for Preeti. She tells it took nearly a year to turn her balcony into a lush looking sanctuary. Now she feels proud of herself every time she gets compliments from guests.

Balcony Decor Ideas
Preeti believes that the process of transforming a house into a home takes a long time and you should try to enjoy every step along the way.

Balcony Decor Ideas

This was all about decorating a balcony space in a traditional Indian way. I hope Preeti’s balcony inspired you to create your own calming retreat. Thanks Preeti for sharing the lovely images and the balcony transformation story with us. Wish you and your family love, luck & sunshine.
Dear readers, if you are looking for some more Balcony Decorating Ideas then click here.
I’m shooting one more video this week so stay tuned! Till then connect with me here:


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Balcony Gardens With Personal Touches

Whether you have a huge garden in front of a sprawling bungalow or 
a tiny balcony garden in an apartment, it will not make a pleasing space for you until you add some personal touches to it. A balcony garden is a promise to mother nature that we will always find a way to bring you into our homes. 

Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Reema Sarvanan
Today we have two special guests with us from Bangalore who are going to share how they turned their balcony gardens into a space where one can sit, relax and find some respite from the hustle-bustle of the city.

Reema Saravanan:
Reema is joinin juggles between work and family and tries to create a balance. In addition to her IT job, she had also started a new venture ‘Cushion Harbour‘.  Here is how she turned a small balcony garden into a space that reflects her personality. 

Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Reema Sarvanan
“An apartment is seldom a place for individuality or originality, with every house looking exactly the same and adding to it is the constraint of limiting ourselves to balcony gardens. But I wanted to make the most out of it.” 

Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Reema Sarvanan

“My father raised me garden friendly and with his love for plants, I inherited his green thumb too. I have dedicated 2 out of 3 balconies to my plants.”

Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Reema Sarvanan
“The focal point of my balcony is the wall. I have accessorised it with a few wrought iron pieces I purchased from several exhibitions. I think the contrast of wrought iron against a white wall is universally attractive.” 


Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Reema Sarvanan
“The tiny chair you see there is where I sit and drink my morning tea and I wouldn’t miss it for anything. In short, I would like to say that my balcony is a garden which is home to not only plants and decor but also a piece of my childhood and heart.”


Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Reema Sarvanan

Raaga Madhu:
Madhu is joining us from Bangalore and showing us a before and after picture of her balcony garden. You don’t always need to burn a hole in your pocket when you think of a makeover of any space in your home. Here is how Madhu did it without spending a fortune.

Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Raaga Madhu
“We live in Bangalore. We have a medium sized balcony on the west side of our home. To decorate it, I must say I had not spent much. I bought all the terracotta pots from potters and not from nearby nurseries that saved me a lot of bucks.” 

Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Raaga Madhu
“Then I painted them myself in sync with my balcony flooring and its walls some of them I left as is. The terracotta couple here is from Brougham from Madanapalli in Andhra. I repainted them according to my taste.”


Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Raaga Madhu
“I felt that there was something missing on the wall so, the sun on the wall was painted by me with acrylic colours it’s Madhubani art inspired sun. I used the yellow tiles from leftover scrap and placed them in the middle to add to the balcony decor. The butterflies are the silicon fridge magnets placed in the pot with small rods.”


Indian Balcony Garden
Image Credit: Raaga Madhu

That’s all I had for you today. Hope you found some easy tips and ideas to decorate your balcony garden. If you too want to share your garden spaces on 3D you can write to me. 

Stay tuned!! I’ll be coming up with a new DIY video. Till then connect with me here:



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DIY Bonsai Planter

My work is keeping me from my blog and I just hate this. 
I can’t stay away from it and my lovely readers for long so I took out some time and created this DIY bonsai planter tutorial especially for my dear readers. 

DIY Bonsai Planter

Few months ago I tried my hands at creating bonsais. I created four bonsais jade, bougainvillaea, jasmine and ixora out of which only three survived. Ixora died because it was a wrong selection of the plant to create a bonsai. But I think three out of four was a good result for the first timer like me. I had started jade in the last week of September and just in two-three months it started looking a lot like bonsai. But its pot was quite boring so I decided to give it a makeover. After all, if your bonsai takes the shape of real bonsai its pot should look like a pretty bonsai pot too.
Tip: Jade is the simplest plant to start with if you too wish to create a bonsai. 
Gosh!! I talk a lot. Now let’s start the tutorial without much ado.

For the DIY enthusiast like me acrylic colours, white M-seal(epoxy clay) and clear varnish are quite versatile art & craft supplies. You just put on your thinking cap and there are numerous things you can make using these three simple supplies. In this DIY tutorial, we are going to use the same supplies.

DIY Bonsai Pot
I drew a rough sketch of the pattern I wanted on the bonsai pot so that I can glue epoxy clay accordingly. To know how to use epoxy clay and how to make shapes using epoxy clay check out my previous post Lippan work tutorial and DIY Owl planter tutorial. These two blogs will give you a fair idea on how to work with clay. So the first three steps would be drawing a design on the pot, preparing clay and making shapes to stick on the pot. 
DIY Hand Painted Clay Pot
Here is how I made the patterns using clay and stuck the clay on bonsai pot. Good enough to go ahead and paint it. 
DIY Garden Planter

This time I chose distressed finish for my bonsai planter otherwise in all my previous works I have always preferred a fresh and clean look. I chose mint green for the clay patterns and painted it first. 

DIY Bonsai Pot

For the rest of the pot I chose Persian blue and painted it when mint green was dried completely. First I painted the rim of the planter. 

DIY Bonsai Pot

Then I added some more water in Persian blue color to make it bit runny and painted rest of the pot including clay patterns. See the below picture, this is how it looked after painting. 

DIY Bonsai Pot

While the color was still wet I dabbed a soft cloth gently on the clay patterns only. It revealed the mint green color and I loved the distressed look. 

DIY Bonsai Planter

Here is how the bonsai pot is looking with jade bonsai in it. Now it’s time to decorate the bonsai pot with some accessories to complete the look. 

DIY Bonsai Planter

I used some pebbles, shells and tiny birds made out of shells to beautify the pot. Here is a closer look for you. Did you spot one little birdie sitting on the branch of jade bonsai. 

The bonsai planter turned out the way I had wished and it sits pretty on my coffee table now. 
Tip: Sometimes handmade stuff should be given the opportunity to beautify the place instead of fancy looking expensive stuff. 

DIY Bonsai Pot

Are you inspired to create bonsai and to make this bonsai planter, oh! please go ahead. It is so therapeutic I tell you. 
Now my dear peeps, I request you that please do not miss my next post as I will be sharing my achievements this year and my plans for the next year and I bet you will find my plans quite exciting. You all are a part of my success so I am asking you to join me in my next blog which is dedicated to you all 🙂
Stay tuned and keep creating!!

Want some more inspirations: Check out these lovely Home Tours

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Fan Of 3D: Sonali Kulkarni

I recently heard from a reader from my home town Indore. 
I was delighted to know that my blog is read in my home town too 🙂 nothing could be more joyful than this. Joy doubles up when I get to know that they incorporate the ideas I share on my blog to transform their spaces and then my dear readers share the images with me to know my views. Sharing one such story:

Balcony Garden Ideas


I am Sonali from Indore, an ardent art lover. Beautifying my home is my passion and I try my maximum to use my creativity. I am a regular reader of blog ‘Design Decor & Disha‘ which was an inspiration for me to bring out my creativity. 

Balcony Garden Ideas

I never thought that a small colourless and empty balcony of my apartment where I would hardly go, would be my favourite place in my house and I got the inspiration from  Disha’s blog “my balcony garden makeover”

Balcony Garden Ideas


Now my balcony is colourful with plants, pots, flowers, a fairy garden and many more such things which were lying useless in my house but seems to have become alive when given a place in my small little garden. Waiting to get many more such ideas from ‘Design Decor & Disha‘.

Balcony Garden Ideas

I loved how beautifully Sonali has given personal touch to her balcony garden with mundane objects. What do you say readers, did you like this balcony garden as much as I did.
Read rest of the balcony garden stories here.

Stay tuned for some monsoon inspiration before it bids adieu !

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DIY Ideas For The Weekend

Here are some DIY ideas for you to give your garden a makeover this weekend. Go through the links for a complete post.
A very quick way to create a zen corner in your garden, click here to know how you can do that.

Zen Corner
Paint hanging baskets:
Paint all those hanging baskets in some vibrant colour to add charm in your garden. Click here to know how I did it.

Hanging baskets
Make a pot full of happiness:
Paint a pot (any kind of pot) and place it in your garden. It will sure add some drama there. Click here to see how I made one for my garden.

Painted pots
Summers are already here and it would be great if you could give a home to some birds, and please don’t forget to keep bird bath in your garden. Click here to learn how you can make bird house at home. 
Bird House
To give your balcony garden a face-lift, you can paint one of the walls of your balcony. You can choose Madhubani, warli or any other Indian art form to give personal touch to your garden. Click here to know how I painted my client’s balcony walls. 
Warli Painting on Balcony wall
You can make some garden accessories by your own like mushrooms, duck and ducklings, turtles, butterflies and bird nest too. Don’t you believe that, then click here and here
Garden Accessories
Garden Accessories
Hope now you have a fair idea to give a complete makeover to your garden. Choose any of these DIY ideas as your weekend project and don’t forget to share your work here 🙂
Have a creative weekend folks!!
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Hanging Baskets In My Small Balcony Garden

I had always wanted hanging baskets in my balcony garden, but I couldn’t find big wrought iron hanging baskets with coir lining here in Pune. So I bought these plastic ones. I didn’t like their dull colours though, so I painted them in vibrant colours.
Balcony Garden

I planted Money plant, Jade, 9 O’clock, Purple Wandering Jew and Singapore Daisy in some baskets, that my mother had given me and sowed seeds of Virginia Stock and Nasturtium in two baskets, that my mother-in-law had given me. I was desperate like a kid, who just wanted seeds to sprout the moment they were sown. I wanted to see, how my baskets will going to look when they will be full of foliage and blooms. And slowly it happened………

Balcony Garden
Kid in me was so happy to see some blooms and Virginia Stock sprouts, that were filling the blue basket.
Balcony Garden
And finally the day arrived when I saw 9 O’clock, Nasturtium, Singapore Daisy and Virginia Stock blooming and Money plant & Jade thriving and spreading cheer in my small garden. This was the sight I was waiting for. It was so heart warming to look at these baskets.  

Balcony Garden
Some close ups………
Balcony Garden
And some different angles………
Balcony Garden
And Purple wandering Jew has become the main attraction in the garden for its lovely purple leaves and the way it’s covering the basket.
Balcony Garden
But now because of cold weather Nasturtium has died 🙁 and 9 O’clock plant has stopped blooming. 
Waiting for Spring to arrive now.
Have a great weekend ahead dear all!!

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Beautiful Balcony Garden!!

First let me share some exciting news for all my lovely readers. I know you all love decorating your homes, so here is a chance to win gift voucher worth Rs.3000/- for more information click here.
I have a wonderful guest today on my blog, Smita Srivastava. A food blogger who is equally enthusiastic about gardening. When I stumbled across some beautiful images of her small balcony garden, I couldn’t help and asked her to send some more lovely images.
Smita Srivastava is the food blogger behind the fun food blog Little Food Junction . She started her career as a graphic designer after completing her masters in advertising design but fun foods, cooking & photography was where her true calling was. Struggling to interest her daughter in eating, she began to transform plates of food into colorful animals , people and pictures to liven up mealtimes. Her designs worked so well that she started her blog, Little Food Junction .
Simplicity , healthy and easy to make has always been her mantra for all her recipes and food designs. Her works have been featured on several newspapers and sites of great repute Her book – Fun food for Fussy Little Eaters ( published by Ryland Peters & Small, London) is available worldwide ( on Amazon, Flipkart, Barnes & noble etc )
As I said she loves gardening too…..
 So here some eye candies for you from Smita Srivastava’s balcony garden
Well that’s a nice way to add pop of colour and so much character in a small balcony garden. Beautiful accessories and lovely planters, is what that can change look of garden.
Indian Balcony Garden

Balcony garden that is filled with lot of character. Don’t you love that cute tiny ceramic hut.

Indian Balcony Garden

Look at those lovely mushrooms…. gorgeous isn’t it.

Indian Balcony Garden

I just loved her collection of beautiful  ceramic planters in different shapes and colours.

Indian Balcony Garden

And here’s a wonderful zen corner in her Indian balcony garden. A perfect place to unwind.

Indianl Balcony Garden

Smita inspired me to do so many things in my garden, I am all set to add some character in my garden. Tell me what do you think of her beautiful garden.
Check out more gardening ideas on my blog click here

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In Nature’s Lap

Hello dear readers!!! I am back after a refreshing and lovely vacation. 
How you all have been. Would you believe I purposely kept myself away from ‘Internet’ during this period
and that was amazing. I just enjoyed every bit of my vacation.
When I came back home from a place where mercury had hit 46 C, weather treated me very well here with short spell of shower and cool pleasant breeze. I almost feel like being in nature’s lap. 
Stepping out of room on the terrace every morning and evening is just a bliss. I get to see different moods and shades of nature. Sometimes it’s warm and shiny ………
Nature

Sometimes grey and dark.

Nature

and sometimes at its best………with myriad colours in the sky.

Nature

and when I look at this beauty I just forget everything else. I am peaceful, free of stresses and calm.

Nature

Now let me take you to my other balcony/terrace. It’s open to sky and looks beautiful in every season. We get ample amount of sunlight through out the year and what to say about pleasant breeze that blows gently every evening as I enjoy my cuppa there.

Garden

View from the living room. I enjoy endless rains

Garden

and my sun kissed beauties too.

Garden

It’s green, it’s full of colour. it’s full of life and happiness!!

Garden

That’s how I feel in my lovely abode. Blessed, happy and in nature’s lap 🙂
Stay tuned to know about relation between fragrance and your mood. Next post coming soon….

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Fan Of The Week: Shashwatee Raut

First let me share some exciting news for all my lovely readers. I know you all love decorating your homes, so here is a contest and a chance to win gift voucher worth Rs.3000/- for more information click here.
This really cheers me up and keep me going when I receive some sweet notes from fans and readers of my blog. One such reader ‘Shashwatee Raut‘ sent me her very very creative work to share here. Have a look of her DIY projects and beautiful balcony garden. Over to Shashwatee-

Many items in my garden are clay items which I have painted…Tulsi pot, small dog, swan, stool on which I have kept the fountain and the lotus pot.


Small cranes are made of U shaped hair pins and left over M-Seal. The mushrooms are made of plaster of Paris and body of a Reynolds pen (white body)…I have used egg shells as mould to give the mushroom shape. The small insect is made of a plastic ball. The bells are made of Chai ke kulhad!!!

This is Shashwatee’s small but lively and beautiful balcony garden.


These five hanging pots are just rabdi handis which I have painted 🙂 
They look so vibrant and enhance the beauty of her small balcony garden.

   

Small pot in below image is made of paper clay…and I have placed an artificial plant in it as I can’t water it……and the lotus like pink flower is made of pistachio shells. 
That lotus looks so real . Pot and butterflies are adding character to the space.


The nest in below image is made of coconut coir…I tried to make it as real as possible but……it became like this. 
Now who will going to believe this that nest isn’t real.

I have made the pen stand with a rejected glass on which there was a crack…by simply pouring candle drops on it..then painted with fabric colour.
That’s creativity at it’s best.

 And the tablas are made of coconut shell..

Two creations are inspired from yours..
This is beautiful and she has done great job. You can find these two tutorials here and here.



Thanks a lot Shashwatee for sharing your passion for art and craft here on Design Decor & Disha.
What say friends. Isn’t everything just fabulous. Everything that she made tells a story of her creative imaginations. What do you think…..just let her know through your comments 🙂

If you also have something to share please feel free to write me at designdecoranddisha@gmail.com!!
Stay tuned to meet Inspiring Eminent Artist of this month 🙂

All images are provided by Shashwatee Raur and are subject to copyright.