A wood rug on the floor can add lots of charm to home and office interiors. It is an ideal alternative to hardwood flooring, especially in a tropical country like India. Hardwood flooring sure looks elegant, rustic and all, but it comes with its own woes for the homeowner. For one, wooden flooring is expensive and needs a lot of maintenance. Wooden flooring is prone to damage in humid conditions and in the presence of termites.
If you are the kind of homeowner who likes to change things as seasons change, why not opt for a wood rug or a wooden carpet instead of hardwood flooring.
Legno-Legno is one such wood rug beautifully crafted by Ruckstuhl, a swiss design house. Legno-Legno makes it pretty simple for you to place wood rugs on your floor and roll them up when not in use. Available in six different types of woods, you can use it to define different areas in your apartment or studio.
This wood carpet is from Bose Industries, Chennai. Looks neat, comes in different designs and is made from good quality wood made to last really long.
This crimson dyed bamboo rug from rugsexpress makes the room look vibrant.
Cork rugs can make your living space look subtle yet elegant. Check out this charming little cork carpet by Corkrug.
Did you know that cork (bark) of the cork oak tree can be harvested without axing down the tree and bamboo take less than five years to grow back. So using bamboo and cork for carpets and rugs is not bad for the environment. Rugs made out of these are versatile – can be used on kitchen floors, bathroom floors and even in passages.
Wood rugs and carpets last long. They are easy to clean – great for busy people who have no time to spare for house keeping work.
So, what do you think? Would you like to buy wood rugs and carpets for your home decor?
Wall decor stickersfor your home are in! It is about time you use wall art stickers to add some life to your boring, plain painted walls! Transform your walls into amazing works of art affordably, using custom wall stickers.
Custom vinyl wall decals are designer vinyl stickers that you can affix to any smooth surface, not just walls. You can use them on your kitchen and bathroom wall tiles as attractive borders. You can use them on kids furniture too. You get them in a variety of designs and colors, even in 3D. You can order custom wall decals online, specifying the design, color and wall quotes if any. Let us talk about custom vinyl stickers exclusively meant for your walls.
Wall decor stickers – All about them
Why Should I use vinyl wall art stickers?
Vinyl wall decals are made from very thin vinyl approximately 3mm in thickness. It comes with a matte finish, making the design seem as if it is painted on your wall. These are faster and low cost ways of doing up your walls in less than an hour, without the hassles of wall paint and related drying time. In fact, most of them are removable vinyl wall decals that can be taken off easily without damaging the walls underneath or leaving any residue behind.
Wall decals quotes are catchy and immediately draw attention towards visitors. Get a few decals with wall quotes for your kids bedroom or living room. Go for inspirational wall quotes for your study or funny wall quotes for kids’ room, living and dining room. Or better still, create your own custom wall decals quotes with a custom message, color and design. Check out these awesome vinyl wall murals and wall stickers for kids from www.vinylimpression.co.uk
Custom Vinyl Stickers For Walls – FAQs
Will wall decor stickers damage my walls?
Go in for superior quality precision cut vinyl wall decals that come with high quality adhesive which leaves no residue on removal. Such wall stickers do not peel off wall paint either.
How to test if your wall is suitable for vinyl wall decor stickers?
Stick a piece of masking tape on your wall surface and leave it on overnight. If the tape has peeled off, then your vinyl stickers may come off too. These stickers work best on smooth surfaces. Do not put your custom vinyl stickers on textured walls.
How can I ensure zero damage when peeling off wall art stickers?
Gently heat the removable vinyl wall decal with a hair dryer. The heat softens the adhesive and you can easily peel the wall decal off your walls, without leaving any residue or peeling off wall paint.
How to apply custom vinyl stickers on walls?
Your custom wall decals are usually shipped in package tubes. Simply unroll one. Rub the flat surface of the wall decal with a credit card to push out air bubbles. Turn it over. Peel off and stick onto your wall carefully. And you have a designer wall in less than 30 minutes!
Check out this video on how to apply vinyl wall decals on your walls.
Bean bag chairs and seats are simple DIY furniture that you can design yourself. These are affordable pieces of furniture that cost you below Rs.5000. Ideal for students and people living in studio apartments and rented accommodations and for those who are on a shoe string budget. Check out how to use bean bags in multipurpose ways.
How To Make A Bean Bag – Seat
Buy Rexin sheets of your favorite color. Get them stitched from a cushion or mattress maker in the form of seats as shown in the picture. Dimensions of bean bags are 2′ x 2′ x 6″ . Make 4 or 6 such seats.
Attach a zipper for each bean bag. Stitch small rexine fixers with velcro on the zipper side of the seats.
Leave the bean bag – seats as is or stitch fabric covers for these bean bags for a long shelf life. Make sure that these fabric covers are open from the zipper side of each bean seat. Do not fix buttons or zippers to close these covers.
Bean Bags – Multipurpose functionality
Seats For Two
Place the bean bags one on top of the other in two stacks. Now you have seats for two. Place a center table in between. Enjoy a game of cards or a cup of coffee with your friend or partner.
Bean Bag Chairs
Attach two seats with velcro fixers to form a sort of hinge. Place them as shown below to form bean bag chairs.
Bean Bag Bed
Attach 4 bean bags with velcro fixers to form a single line. Cover this with a bed sheet. You have a single bed.
For a double bed, arrange the bean bag seats as shown below. Throw in some colorful cushions and you can call friends overnight or even handle unexpected guests.
Maintenance Of Bean Bag Seats
Maintenance of bean bag chairs and seats is pretty simple. Wash the fabric covers once in a while. If the seats start flattening, it is time to refill the seats with fresh styrofoam beans. You get a medium sized bag of thermocol for Rs.200- Rs.250, which is not much.
Bean bags are multipurpose furniture. You can prop them up against a wall as a chair or even use them as seats, daybeds or beds at night. These save space and won’t burn a hole in your pocket. Bean bags are excellent stress busters too. You can comfortably lie on them, watch your favorite TV show or read a book, entertain friends and so on.
Looking out for some funky soft n squishy pieces of bean bags for lazing around when you get back home from work? You are not alone. Bean bags are in. Every home has one or more bean bags. They are affordable, easy to move and lend a casual appeal to your living room, study and bed rooms.
These are multifunctional pieces of furniture.Watch TV, enjoy a drink or read out bed time stories to kids sitting comfortably in a nice, soft bean bag. Relax and unwind. You can enjoy a short nap or possibly use it for collecting dry clothes, to be folded later. Kids can use these as center tables, for playing board games when friends come over. In fact, children love bean bags as they can jump on them.
Bean bags can be easily moved from one area to another. Moving a bean bag is as easy as sliding it from one room to another. You can slide it from your living room to the side of your pool, bask in the sun and enjoy a nice, cool drink. Some people carry bean bags along in their vehicles when camping out or going out for picnics.
Pear shaped bean bags offer great back support as they cover more of your back.
Bean bags have no sharp edges. Their soft nature makes it safe for kids.
Bean Bag – Features
Bean bags come in various shapes – typical shapes are bean bag chairs, cylinder, teardrop or sack shaped. Before buying, sit on these and find out which is the best suited to your body type.
Bean Bag Covers
Bean bag covers come in a variety of materials – you get rexine, leather, microfiber, cotton and denim. Rexine or vinyl and leather based bean bag covers have a firm grip on the floor. However, they are also subject to wear and tear especially with kids around. Microfiber, cotton and denim covers last longer, but require periodic washing to keep them clean. Cotton covers need to be really thick else they will not have a firm grip on the flooring. Rexine and leather bean bag covers require minimal cleaning. Wiping with a damp cloth is all that is needed of them.
Bean Bag Filling
You get thermocol fillings i.e. polystyrene for bean bags. A bag costs Rs.200 in Vashi APMC Market, Navi Mumbai. If possible, go green – use recycled polystyrene from older bean bags or packaging material.
Bean Bag Colors
Rexine or vinyl bean bag covers are available in a myriad of colors. Check out Matta Foam House in Turbhe market. This tiny shop is famous throughout Navi Mumbai for autorickshaw seat covers, foam etc. They have rexine of every possible color under the sun. For kids rooms, use bright colors like red, orange or yellow for bean bag covers. Other rooms, you can co-ordinate bean bag colors with the wall color or color of the furnishings. Throw in colorful or plain cushions to complement the bean bag colors.
Customized Bean Bags
Buy rexine or covering material of your choice. Design a bean bag yourself. Use different shapes like bean seats, bean bag chairs etc. Get it stitched from tailors who stitch mattresses and mattress covers. Stitch a handle on top for easy lifting. Make sure there is an inner lining of a different material – say curtain lining. Fill this with polystyrene filling. The bean bag cover goes on top of this. Both the lining and the top cover must have zippers for opening and closing.
Look at his rabbit shaped bean bag design. You can use similar designs for smaller bean bags that double up as a back rest or arm rest on a daybed or a Diwan. Experiment with different colors and shapes.
Bean Bags Online
Setner Football Bean Bag
You can buy such funky bean bag chairs and bean bag furniture online at www.fabfurnish.com for as low a range as ₹799 onwards with free shipping(check shipping T & C for available locations.)
Bead curtains are sometimes overlooked when it comes to redoing your home interiors the smart way. Simply put, beaded curtains are simple airy curtains made of beads in various materials, patterns and designs. Using beaded curtains is an age old custom followed all over the world. In India, it was and is still a norm to adorn doorways with dainty looking beaded curtains. Let us check out how to use beaded curtains for that much needed face lift your home deserves.
Bead Curtains For Your Home
Door Ways And Passage Entrances
Other than the doorways, you can hang beaded curtains at passage entrances and windows.
Bead Curtains As Room Dividers
Bead curtains act as excellent room dividers and partitions giving an airy look to the room. In case of dining cum living rooms, use bead curtains to divide the dining area from the living area. In spite of being separated into two areas, the living room looks large with ample amount of light. With a beaded curtain partition, the residents get a feeling of a private dining area within the confines of a larger area, without getting alienated from the rest of the living room.
Metal Bead Curtains
There are bead curtains with small metal bells or tinkling metal for the beads, that will double up as wind chimes. Use these curtains at entrances to your front porch or backyard garden.
Bead Curtains On Wall Closets
Hang cute bead curtains on wall closets, like the ones used for storage higher up the walls, which are not opened very often.
You get these lovely hand painted beaded curtains with beautiful paintings on white beaded backgrounds. These can be used to adorn plain walls.
Types Of Beaded Curtains
There is absolutely no restriction on using beaded strings for a curtain. You can experiment with a myriad of colors, materials and designs. You can sew on beads to the end of a transparent white fabric curtain for a calm and serene look.
For instance, use carved, wooden beads for a traditional look. Use a curtain made of colorful yet transparent plastic beads alternating with mirror pieces in a room that has less light coming in. Use fabric beads with embroidered motifs sewn on. Small Rajasthani puppets beaded together in strings can add a touch of old world charm to your home.
Let your imagination go haywire. Get beaded curtains made of pretty seashells and rocks. For Kids Rooms, use brightly colored cartoon characters or balls or alphabet shapes beaded together to form curtains.
Photo Credits: mattmurf
Then there are glass and crystal beaded curtains which allow more light to come in. They look beautiful, swinging away in the morning and evening sunlight. Curtains made from bone beads, amber beads, wooden beads and even metal beads look stunning.
Advantages Of Beaded Curtains
They make a room appear airy and brighter. They can be used to add to the natural light in a room. Use mirrored curtains or fluorescent beaded curtains that shine at night. They make your interior decor look charming to guests. This is a cost efficient way of partitioning your rooms.
DIY bead curtain ideas include making thin braids of reused colorful plastic or pieces of colorful cloth. Sew on a few beads of your choice. Stitch these braids on to a main hanger-strip of cloth and voila you have a recycled beaded curtain!
They create privacy in an area without disconnecting you from the rest of the house.
Beaded curtains can be a unique lifestyle statement that reflects your status.
Care For Beaded Curtains
Non-Fabric Beaded curtains can be easily cleaned by dipping them in mild soapy solution first and immediately rinsing them in plain water. Test for color fastness. If you feel they are losing color, just wipe them with a moist cotton cloth.
For fabric beads, wiping with a moist cloth will be sufficient enough.
When To Avoid Having Door Length Beaded Curtains
Avoid door length beaded curtains if you have babies or toddlers at home. They may get entangled or swallow the beads accidentally. Same goes for people with pets. Aged people with limited visibility may not notice beaded curtains at night. Make sure you move them to one side of the doorway and tie them with a string or bunch them together with a clip.
Or better still, use half door length beaded curtains when you have small kids or pets around.
Trundle beds for kids are an absolute must if you have more than one kid sharing a single bedroom. It means investing in space saving features and furniture that can be used by more than one kid at the same time. People opt for kids bunk beds. But I personally feel trundle beds are a better option. Of course, they need horizontal floor space when expanded. However, a bed with trundle can work wonders and find favor with your kids when used in correct places.
Buy this beautiful, multifunctional kids trundle bed from www.vividha.in
All About Trundle Beds For Kids
What are Trundle Beds?
Trundle beds have multiple platforms or trundles, one below the other. Each platform has a mattress. The lower platforms open by sliding out under the top platform. You can have two or even three platforms in a trundle bed. The lower platforms have retractable legs that can be positioned properly when it has been pulled out. Trundle beds are usually box beds with a wooden frame. These beds do not have box springs. You also get these beds in lightweight and durable metal frames that are easy to clean. Some beds come equipped with wheels, rollers or casters. Always go in for trundle beds that can be assembled and moved easily.
Types of Kids Trundle Beds
Simple Trundle Beds
The simplest form of a trundle bed is a basic bed frame on wheels that slides under the main bed. The occupant may feel very close to the floor.
Drawer Trundle Beds
In this type, the main bed will have a drawer underneath. This can be pulled out, serving as a trundle bed.
Pop Up Trundle Beds
This type of trundle bed is ideal for those who wish to sleep at the same height. The lower trundle bed is first pulled out from under the main bed and then propped up to the same height as the main bed. This is done with springs or metal stands.
Advantages Of Trundle Beds For Kids
They require lesser space than conventional beds. You can have two or even three trundle beds in a single box, in your room for two to three kids. During the day, all the beds are locked inside, ensuring maximum play area in the kids bedroom.
Safe For Kids
The kids are safe, closer to the floor as against kids bunk beds. This makes it easier to get down at night, to go to the bathroom or to drink water.
Trundle Beds can act as daybeds. Ideal for smaller homes and apartments. In case your kids’ friends come visiting during the day to play or for a kiddo party, you could pull out one of the extra lower beds, cover it with an attractive top sheet and throw in some cushions. This gives extra seating space for kids during the day. In case you have unexpected guests or if any kids come for sleepovers, you can put these to good use. Kids trundle beds with drawers also provide extra storage for cushions, toys etc.
Easy To Clean
Mattresses that come with trundle beds are usually light weight and easy to clean. The lower bed mattresses can be easily covered with simple plastic sheets for dust protection, when you slide or roll them back in, when not in use. Kids trundle beds need cleaning just like any other conventional bed. You can vaccum and dust the mattresses and wipe the bed frames. This is much easier as compared to a bunk bed. Are bunk beds safe?I don’t think so.
You can easily move a trundle bed from one area to another. This is very useful when cleaning your kids bedroom.
Where to buy Trundle Beds for Kids online in India
Vividha – Everything Kidshas some cool trundle beds for kids bedrooms. You can buy these online at their website – www.vividha.in,www.firstcry.com or www.hoopos.com.
Take a look at this cute kiddo trundle bed from Vividha – Everything Kids.
You can also buy cool, mutipurpose trundle beds from Kids Kouch, Bangalore. Check out their website www.kidskouch.com for some stunning trundle beds for kids. This drawer trundle bed is from Kids Kouch.
Before buying trundle beds, carefully note the room dimensions and other furniture present there. Thereafter, you can decide whether to buy them online or to get them custom built by a local furniture shop nearby.
Are bunk beds safe – for kids? Now everyone knows that bunk beds are excellent for maximum utilization of space in kids bedrooms. This is particularly true in case of apartments and urban spaces where you have to buy furniture keeping in mind space constraints. Kids bunk beds are available in a myriad of colors, designs and patterns. Parents of two or more kids are often attracted towards bunk beds. However, there are many disadvantages of kids bunk beds which you must be aware of. Take a look at these top negative points you come across while managing bunk beds for kids.
Are bunk beds safe for kids?
Disadvantages of bunk beds – Accident prone for kids
Bunk beds are inconvenient for kids occupying the upper bunks. Going to the bathroom or getting a drink is difficult as kids have to get down before doing so. In case they are sleepy, they may even miss a step while getting down. Bunks closer to the ceiling are dangerous. Kids may stand up and hit their heads on ceiling lights or any electrical equipment on the ceiling. It is particularly dangerous if kids frequently fight with each other, climbing up and down these bunks.
Bunk Beds Gobble Up Vertical Space
Kids bunk beds may save floor space but they look like giant pieces of furniture taking up vertical space or wall space. They make bedrooms look compact and small. The top bunks may prevent ceiling light from reaching the lower bunks. Even if bunk beds are well illuminated with artificial lights, they reduce the amount of natural light in a room.
Maintenance Of Bunk Beds Is Difficult
Kids bunk beds are particularly disadvantageous when it comes to maintenance. For one, it is not an easy task to make the beds of upper bunks, everyday. Certainly not for kids. You have to do it yourself. Mattresses from the upper bunks have to be moved down. Else you end up kneeling on the same bed that you are going to make. Procrastination will lead to dusty beds with dust mites triggering skin allergies. Dust is also a problem with the lower bunks. Dust accumulating underneath a bunk can spell disaster for the occupant under that bunk. Dusting and wiping under the bunks with occasional vaccumming must be done on a daily basis. That is a lot of time wasted every day, don’t you think?
Relocation Of Bunk Beds Is Difficult
You can’t relocate kids bunk beds easily. This is difficult to do within the same room as well. You need to consider the placement of lights, air conditioners and any furniture that is wall mounted. Relocation is possible only by disassembling and reassembling kids bunk beds. People buy kids bunk beds to save up on space and the combined cost of two separate beds. However, you must be aware of the disadvantages before planning to buy them. I would suggest you buy trundle beds for kids. These save up on wall space, floor space and keep your kids closer to the floor. Accidents in the dark can be avoided.
Use area rugs to highlight and accentuate different locations in every room. Use colorful rugs and carpets in your living room, bed rooms and study to add a dash of color and creativity. These are available in a wide range of colors, textures and materials in the market. However, if you have a creative bend of mind and love Do it yourself crafts, then opt for these super frugal area rugs made at home. Listed below are some funky ideas for cheap rugs made of recycled material.
Towel Area Rugs
Buy two cheap thick towels from an economy store. Stitch them together at all the four ends. Make yarn flowers of another complementing color. Stitch these yarn flowers in the center of the towel in different designs. Also make a border of these yarn flowers to hide the stitches.
Video – Make pretty yarn flowers
Cheap area rugs made of T-shirts
Reuse old t-shirts. Cut 3” by 3” strips of different colored t-shirts. Fold and stitch each strip in half. Then stitch together all these folded strips in varying colors to make a larger cover. For the base, cut 2 or 3 pairs of old jeans, old thick bed sheets or any other thick material into short, broad pieces. Stitch these together. Place the other piece of stitched t-shirt pieces over the bottom thick base and stitch them together at all the ends, leaving one end open. Fill in scraps of cloth to make the rug thicker. Finally, stitch the last end securely. Your t-shirt floor rug is ready.
Pom Pom Floor Rugs
Make tiny pom poms with yarn in different colors. Stitch them together. Make a large round layer of tiny yarn balls. As in the t-shirt rug mentioned above, stitch this layer over another layer of thick material, leaving one end open. Fill this with cloth scraps to make the rug thick.
Area Rugs – Benefits
Colorful rugs add warmth and color to any dull looking room. Placing trendy accent rugs to define different areas, is a wonderful idea for people renovating their homes. This is a cheaper alternative to changing everything from furniture to accessories. A single area rug or a couple of floor rugs placed together can cut down unnecessary expenditure during home renovation especially if you are looking forward to change the flooring which is in good condition. An area rug can be an attractive focal point of a room. It is a soft, warm antidote for tired feet after a days hard work.
Area Rugs – Placement
Place area rugs in your dining area, living room seating area or under the center table. Use cute, colorful floor rugs in your kids bedroom to highlight activity area or play areas. A great home décor idea is to hang area rugs as wall hangings as seen in the picture above. I have seen this trend in a few in a few designer boutiques and home décor stores. This can be used for highlighting walls in passages leading from your living room to the inner areas of your home. Use beautiful wall hanging accent rugs or modern area rugs on your balcony walls or front porch.
Using Area Rugs – Top Tips
1. When using more than one area rug, make sure they are not of the same size. Same size area rugs make the room appear divided and smaller.
2. Use area rugs which complement each other. For example, use colors that complement each other, or patterns which match like a small navy blue dot pattern goes well with a medium light blue dot pattern. The trick is to avoid patterns and colors that are disgusting to the eyes.
3. Floor rugs must be in sync with walls. For wallpapered and textured walls with intricate designs, the area rugs must be in plain or subtle colors. If the walls are plain, the area can have intricate designs, oriental patterns and interesting colors.
4. Use easy to clean area rugs. They can cause problems for people with dust and mite allergies. The easy to clean aspect is a must for people with small kids and pets.
5. Rectangle is passe. Enhance your apartment therapy with different shapes of area rugs like oval, round, triangle or let your rug be shapeless with an amoeba like form.
6.Experiment with different materials found at home for making cheap rugs you can use on the floors. Use egg cartons, upcycled clothes or bedsheets, coir, ribbons,old plastic wires, plastic straws, colorful sponges etc. for making good looking floor rugs.
Painting your home interiors is quite an uphill task when it comes to selecting interior wall paints. Confused between emulsion paints, distemper and luster paints? When buying paint for your interior walls, check out the different types of wall paints besides estimating the average cost of a paint job. Asian Paints, Berger Paints, Kansai Nerolac and Dulux offer a wide range of interior wall paints in attractive colors.
Interior Wall Paints – Types
Distemper paints are water based paints, made up of chalk, lime, glue size vehicle and coloring agents. They may have natural or acrylic binders. Ideal for cost effective painting jobs that need to be finished fast enough. They give an elegant, matte finish to the walls. However, distemper paints come without the benefits of other expensive enamel and emulsion paints – Distempered walls cannot be washed or cleaned with water or liquid soap and cannot fight fungal growth.
Emulsion paints are water based paints. For Example, Asian Paints Royale. They impart a rich matte look to the walls. They are durable. Most of the stains on the wall can be wiped away with a mild liquid soap solution. Emulsion paints resist fungal growth and mildew.
These paints are solvent (usually oil or alkyd) based paints. Thinners are required to clean enamel paints whenever repainting is necessary. They dry very slowly and usually emit strong odors. Enamel paint is available in different finishes – eggshell, satin, semigloss and high gloss. Some enamels are also resistant to heat. They make the walls glossy and washable. Enamel paint is usually used in the kitchens, especially on counters and walls bordering the sink, and in bathrooms where humidity levels are high in addition to the constant washing / scrubbing.
Luster paints are solvent based paints. On drying, a tough and durable wall coating is formed that is washable, easy to maintain and stain resistant, as it repels water. Luster paint gives off a beautiful soft pearl like sheen. Most expensive of all the above wall paints, luster paint is extremely long lasting.
These paints are used to impart beautiful patterns and special effects on interior walls, when used with texture tools meant for the purpose like rollers, brushes, spatulae or combs. Texture paint is used in combinations of two or three different paint colors. Ideal for highlighting a particular wall in every room.
For people who are allergic to paint odors and VOCs, go for an eco friendly interior paint with low VOC content. Nerolac ‘Eco Clean’, Berger’Breathe Easy’ and ‘Odour-less Premium all-in-1 interior paint’ from Nippon Paints are eco friendly wall paints that have almost zero levels of VOCs.
Finally it is necessary to get an approximate estimate of the total paint cost plus labor charges. This is even more simple when you use online paint calculator tools provided by Asian Paints, Berger and Dulux.
Note: Other factors like natural and artificial light in your rooms and humidity levels must be considered before finalizing the type of wall paints for your interiors. Glossy wall paint in a room with lot of natural light, will reflect more light and will be hard on the eyes. Also, walls in rooms with less natural light must not go in for matte finish with dark shades, as more light will be absorbed and not reflected.
Kerala home design is well known for its unique wooden construction with intricately carved designs, gabled roofs and extended open verandahs. Southern India is famous for its traditional homes and temple architecture, especially Kerala. However, all wood constructions are now impractical as wood is very expensive. Lifestyle changes have further encouraged modern architects to intelligently synchronize traditional wooden architecture with the present day construction techniques. This unique blend of styles has metamorphosed into some stunningly beautiful homes in Kerala.
A modern home incorporating old style Kerala architecture
Modern homes in Kerala are made from a mix of concrete, bricks and wood. The main building is made of concrete with some parts of the house showcasing intricate wooden designs and structures. These constructions have still not parted ways with the ancient principles of Vaastu.
Lawrence Baker, the late English architect was fascinated by Kerala architecture and settled down in Tiruvananthapuram, Kerala. These are his own words “The various styles of architecture are all the result of thousands of years of ordinary people trying to make buildings that keep out the rain, wind and sun by using locally available materials. So I see what principles have developed over centuries and then apply these principles to what I want to do for my client. Sometimes, the local architecture is so beautiful and so apt that I feel it would be foolish and an affront to try and design in any other way.” (Source: http://lauriebaker.net)
Kerala Home Design – Traditional features
Every traditional home in Kerala had a small door called ‘Padippura’ with a tiled roof, forming part of the compound wall surrounding the house. In modern homes, ‘Padippura’ has given way to a wider gate system facilitating the entry of cars. However, some gates still have an arch or padippura like framework in wood, towering above the gates.
Poomukham, Chuttu Verandah and Charupady
Poomukham is the main entrance to the house, characterized by an open area with a sloping roof supported by pillars, leading into the house. Old style poomukhams were wooden pillars with carved designs. The same effect is achieved now using concrete pillars and POP designs.
Chuttu Verandah is an open verandah joining the poomukham on both sides, supported by pillars, thru which you can walk around the house. Many modern homes still feature an open verandah surrounding the house. The wooden pillars and wooden floors have given way to round, concrete pillars and modern flooring like marble, granite etc.
Charupaddy – carved design on wood
Charupady is a resting area, adjoining the poomukham and the chuttu verandah, characterized by wooden seats with carved wooden back rests. This traditional feature is still preserved in modern homes. The seats are usually granite or marble with back rests made of carved wooden pieces.
Nadumuttom is a traditional open courtyard right in the middle of a traditional home. Being square shaped, this leads to the house interiors on all the four sides. This ‘open to the sky’ feature lets in ample amount of sunlight and fresh air into the house. These houses are called ‘Naalu kettu’ meaning a structure with four sided distribution. In modern Kerala homes, due to security reasons, this open courtyard is covered with a sloping roof higher than the roofs over the other parts of the house in such a way that proper ventilation is still achieved in spite of not being open to the sky. Pergola, Stained glass or safety grills may also be used for as roofing over the open courtyard. Wooden or concrete pillars made to look like wood, are used to border this courtyard.
Kerala Home Design – Wooden Staircase
Modern staircase with carved wooden railings and glass balusters.
‘All wood’ staircases have been replaced by marble, stone or granite stairs with wooden railings. Some stairs have veneer or laminate coverings on a concrete base. The intricately carved teak wood railings and balusters of old style Kerala architecture have been retained in modern homes.
Carved Wooden Doors and windows
Beautifully carved and polished teak or rosewood doors and windows are still a part of every Kerala home. Often, the designs have gold colored enameling, etching or beading work done. This is one feature that has not been done away with. The door handles and fixtures also have intricately carved designs in shades of gold.
In addition to the above, North east placed Pooja rooms with wooden paneling and mural paintings are still seen in modern houses of Kerala. The traditional pond or ‘Ambala Kulam’ is seen on large properties.
With a few design changes, features of traditional Kerala architecture can still be made a part of modern homes.