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‘Dev Pushan’- A Labour of Love

Sitting on a teak-wood swing overlooking a beautiful garden, sipping the lemon grass laced tea in ceramic ‘kulhar’ and enjoying the pitter-patter of the rains and the chitter-chatter is how a home is built piece by piece.
 
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History Professor, Ms. Kalpan Haridas takes us on a journey through ‘DevPushan’. It is built at multi-levels where the reading area and dining is two steps lower than the hall. The hall with its fengshui waterfall and mild lighting has a serene environment that sets the tone for the rest of her home. It is a home with warmth and ‘comfort zone’ feel to it all the way.
 
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Her father collected tea pots and watches and was a great fan of an auctioneer in M.G.Road and that is how she also got the bug of finding unusual things for her home. Childhood memories, she says play a role in how she makes changes to her house, adds new artefacts- be it her prized possession- the brass lamp from Belgaum, bought in 1995 dating back early 1900s or the traditional puppets that greet you at the door to her garden.
 
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Over the years, the streets of Malleshwaram and now Raintree is her source of home décor items, apart from little souvenirs that she brings back from every travel. She vehemently states that it is the objects that matters and not the shop. The eclectic representation of India in her home stands witness to that.

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Ms. Kalpan is also a keen gardener, following the footsteps of her spouse, Mr. Uday Haridas, who she says is ‘the keener gardener’. Her kitchen garden has a variety of fruits, vegetables, herbs and spices. Being smitten with the lemon grass tea, we also ventured into the garden to find fresh bay leaves, passion fruits, ‘dalle khorsani’ chillies (a Kashmiri red chilli variant-round whole chillies with a sweet skin and a hot interior) and ‘basmati yele’(a leaf that when put in the vessel in which you are cooking rice renders a fragrance similar to basmati rice). Everything grown is used and there is no concept of wastage. She also has a compost in the garden that provides the nutrients her plans require. She makes wine in ‘baranis’ (an earthern pot) and next on the agenda is to make champagne from the new peach tree.
 
 
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When asked to provide our readers tips to make a home comfy and artistic without a deep cut in the bank balance, their answer is simple, “The owners must have warmth in their approach, and then everything falls into place. But yes, small bric a brac that add interest. Plants/flowers. Light summery curtains, not heavy drapes. Cotton durries, not carpets that are not the most ideal thing for warm climates anyway”!
 
DevPushan epitomises what Benjamin Franklin says, “A house is not a home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as the body”.