Print Edition: Jan 8, 2012

Dressing to the nines

What not to do with your wardrobe. Rohit Bal's advice on avoiding faux pas.

The corporate world has plenty of protocols. Here are some that concern fashion and style. Pairing 'em Right Mixing checks and stripes is an absolute no-no since the two patterns are inconsistent in form. Their combination is distracting and jarring one. If necessary, do this with similar colour tones.

Don't be Colour Blind Most men aren't blessed with a good colour sense and end up with random pairings. This looks 'off'. Colours should be carefully paired such that they enhance each other. For instance, pairing a jewel tone with a pastel one or a deep colour with a bright one will end up killing both. A bad combination is that of deep red and baby pink. But neutrals like azure and black, and khaki and denims go with just about everything. All said and done, it's safest to dabble with shades within one colour family.

Truth of Fabrication Avoid pairing fabrics that look and feel very different. For instance something as glossy as silk looks horrible with cotton or linen, but a combination of the latter two works well. Shiny fabrics like silk and woollens will never go with sober ones like suede, velvet or corduroy. Always avoid polyester, it looks tacky and isn't cut for Indian climes.

Accessorise: Return to the Classics Minimalism will always be in vogue. A platinum-finished, classic, round watch with a leather strap should do the trick. Avoid chunky gold and diamond studded chains and belts that scream out logos. Instead, flaunt a tieclip matched to cufflinks or go for a pocket square in a contrasting colour.

Save the white socks for tennis practice or the gym and choose tonal and sober browns and blues with thin pin stripes which gently offset the shades in the ensemble.

Shoe Stopper A dirty shoe is a huge put off. Polish your leather and brush your suede every now and then. It goes without saying that shoes should follow the spirit of the clothes. For business suits, bring out your wingtipped brogues and Chelsea boats and save the suede loafers and boat shoes for denims and cargos.

Know your Body Bulky men should avoid big prints, checks, and horizontal stripes and contrasting colours by sticking to vertical stripes and darker tones instead. Lean guys should do exactly the opposite by flaunting horizontal stripes and bright colours. They can throw in a scarf or belt to break the look and keep them from appearing flat.

Cocktail making
The hard science of cocktail making

Master Mixologist of Vladivar Vodka, Yangdup Lama decodes the hard science of cocktail making.

What Molecular mixology is the art of mixing ingredients that react at their molecular level, such as liquid nitrogen, calcium lactate gluconate, alginate and soy lecithin. These chemicals are readily available at laboratory suppliers and pharmaceuticals.

Equipment This requires food grade syringes, pipettes, test tubes, measuring spoons, silicone tubes, slotted spoons and an immersion blender. These are available on and

Quick Tip Study each ingredient thoroughly and follow temperatures and procedures with minute care. Start with classics and move to complex concoctions only as you get better.

Try Orange and pepper caviar

150 ml Vladi Orange Twist
20ml Sugar Syrup
60 ml filtered water, low in calcium
1.5 g Sodium Alginate Calcium bath

Make the Calcium bath by dissolving 2.5 g of calcium chloride in 500 ml of water. Mix well and store in fridge for 24 hours.

Mix the Sodium alginate with the filtered water in an immersion blender. Reduce bubbles by passing it through a strainer. Now mix with Vladivar Orange twist and sugar syrup thoroughly.

Fill a food syringe with the mix and drop it into the calcium bath drop by drop. Leave for about a minute and then carefully scoop it out using a sieve. Serve it in a china bowl with spiralled orange peels as garnish.


Sonia Arora Sood, owner and cofounder of Karabi Artworks, fills us in on the trend of installing artworks in your homes.

Before Buying Study the art market and keep an eye out for upcoming and promising artists, so as to make your collection a worthwhile investment. Perfect Placement If you're going for oils, examine the size of your walls. If these are too cluttered or small, go for one large painting in the centre. Wider spaces look great with clusters of small paintings. Similarly, smaller installations look great in corners whereas large ones look grand in the centre.

Colour Code Lighting accentuates and balances out the colours in your art. While the cool coloured pieces can be augmented with bright, halogen lighting, warm coloured ones can be complemented by subdued incandescents. It's also advisable to use your art as a colour scheme starter. This means you should match the wall colours to the lightest shade in the painting or installation and repeat the bolder hues somewhere in your d├ęcor. This way, they will become the common element that ties up everything to a single theme.

Trend Oils and sculptures studded with semi precious jewellery are in vogue. Price Rs 50,000 and above for a decent creative facelift of your house (depending on the credibility of artist, number of artworks and materials used).

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