What kind of year has 2021 been for you? What are you looking forward to in 2022?
2021 has been a year of extremes – of collective loss, anxiety and a transition to renewed energy.
After a year of deep reflection and isolation, we’re both super excited to be back with our teams and working collaboratively, in person. We’ve really missed the magic of human interaction at work. But the pandemic has taught us to treasure time – for ourselves, for the people we love and to spend it mindfully. So, the year has been an ongoing journey of creating balance in our lives – every day, as we tentatively move back to ‘normalcy’.
“Would we dare say – we look forward to 2022 as a year of celebration – when we have collectively overcome this pandemic. When we can hug people without masks, and laugh together without fear or suspicion.”
And yes, we look forward to travelling again. While we’ve been lucky to travel the last few months, the stress of changing border rules have made it quite daunting. We hope that in 2022, the world becomes more fluid and seamless again.
Most mornings begin with...
Tania A brisk morning walk listening to my favourite podcast, Design Matters by Debbie Millman. I love her curation, and the diverse and insightful perspectives she uncovers on how to live a creative life. Energised, I follow this up with hot lemon water and 30 minutes of Buddhist chanting. Then I’m ready to start my day.
Sandeep A hot cup of chai and sourdough toast with peanut butter and the news of my iPad. Organising the day that lies ahead with numerous lists.
Favourite bedroom feature?
Dappled morning east light that floods our bedroom through our linen blinds.
What's a guilty pleasure you have when it comes to your bedroom?
A nightly ritual of chamomile tea and copious amounts of dark chocolate with our favourite books in hand.
With complementary careers in architecture and design, how have decisions been made with respect to your own home and the objects within it?
With two strong design minds coming together, it's surprising how, ‘most often’ we agree on how we want our home to be. Our process is very collaborative, conversational and fun.
“From the early days of conceptualising our home, the flow of spaces and our thoughts were aligned on wanting an inward-facing home centered around a courtyard. We both value privacy, natural light and materials, and a seamless integration of inside and outside.”
The objects in our home have been collected over the years on our many travels, and our home is a repository of memories. Every object has a unique story: an exuberant multi-coloured lamp made of recycled plastic trash we picked up in Cape Town; a pair of gorgeous antique Art Deco lamps from Portobello Road. Our home is ever-evolving and we love the process.
How often do you feel the urge to change, experiment or edit your home?
We both enjoy small changes: the addition of a lamp, designing a new piece of furniture, adding a cluster of artwork, or changing the colour of a wall.
What are some of your recent design interventions?
Sandeep Rediscovering the joy of finding a home for our stunning Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired stained glass panels that were crafted by Tania's mother 25 years ago. The panels were lying in storage for over a decade till we only recently found the perfect spot at the entrance of our home, where shafts of natural light show off their brilliance.
What are heritage pieces or a space you will likely enjoy forever?
Our distressed teak daybed in our verandah facing the waterbody is special and we found it years ago lying outside a store on the street in Bali. The live edge 15ft long table in our tropical outdoor dining is another treasure that we sourced from Sri Lanka before the house was even built!
What does 'lightness' mean to you? Do you practice the mantra of 'Less Is More'?
Tania Lightness to me is pausing and having time to myself, without my phone. Enjoying simple things like sipping chai and looking out to the beautiful temple tree in our courtyard.
Sandeep Lightness to me is decluttering my desktop and emails.
Tania: I’m quite the opposite. I can’t resist beautiful things so I end up collecting way more than I need! But I do practise ‘Less is More’ by decluttering and giving away things, mindfully, to people I think will need or value them. I find this quite therapeutic.
Sandeep I’m a man of few needs and don’t own too many personal material things, so ‘Less is more’ is a way of life I guess.
What about Himêya resonates with you most, and why?
In a time of excessive consumption and a climate crisis, we value Himêya's commitment to creating conscious products that are ethically sourced, and to a low carbon footprint.
We are especially attached to our Rescue Towels – such an innovative use of discarded terry. These randomly multi-coloured towels are delightful! We also really love the thought and attention put into conceptualising each collection, like Moontide and Vitamin D.
(L) Darn-it Bedding | Featuring the True Square King Pillowcase & Sheet Set
(R) Darn-it Bath | Featuring the Melange Mineral Grey Hand Towels
Sandeep I really like the True Square King Sheet Set on our dark wood four poster bed. The subtle stitch texture on the sheets and pillowcases makes them feel luxurious and special.
Sandeep: I enjoy bedding that is very neutral – in light shades that look airy and fresh – and complement the expanse of warm wooden floors in our bedroom.
Tania I love the Melange mineral grey towels with unfinished edges. They feel simple, honest and incredibly soft on the skin. I would roll and place them in our raw wooden bowl from Bali which perfectly complements their natural textures.
A perfect Sunday...
A slow lazy morning with chai in bed and time to read. Reading the Mint Lounge in print (not a quick read on our iPads which is our weekday ritual) is something we really look forward to!
Hanging out in our living room, lounging on our Eames chair and listening to music with Monsoon Malabar coffee in hand. And our adorable golden retriever Flash by our side.
“A light salad and sandwich lunch that we cook up and enjoy in our outdoor dining, surrounded by lush greenery and the smell of rain. Afternoons we usually do our own thing: read, sketch ideas, write thoughts, collect inspiration."
We enjoy a long walk together on a Sunday evening – we’re both walkers, but Sunday is the one day in the week we actually walk together and catch up on the week gone by. The highlight is our evening weekly call with our kids. Our daughter Mahika is in Boston and our son Aryaman in LA – 10:30pm is sacrosanct when we all touch base and reconnect.
Is your bedroom a screen-free zone? How do you prefer to unwind before turning out the lights?
Screens do creep into our bedroom but we prefer to put them away before going to bed in favour of some quiet time reading a book. Calming music with a scented candle is a lovely way to ease into sleep.
What keeps you awake at night?
Tania With two kids in different time zones, my phone is never off. While they rarely call late at night, part of me doesn’t totally switch off.
A nightly ritual of chamomile tea.