Happy New Year everyone! I hope you all had a fruitful 2016 and a festive end to the year! For me, 2016 had many challenges but also many wonderful joys and new memories 🙂 My New Year’s Eve was spent at my friend’s Bollywood-themed party: think copious amounts of curry, papadams, henna, saris and Bride and Prejudice #culturalappreciation
I myself have always been a big fan of Bollywood (although I am by no means an expert and haven’t watched that many films) which shouldn’t be a big surprise. By now you should have realised that I love vibrant colours, dancing, fun songs and foreign media (my interest in Kpop, Jpop and Eurovision comes to mind…)
I wore a red sari combo I bought at my local Salvos (my Sri Lankan neighbour had unfortunately already packed away all her saris in boxes!)
The fairylight circlet? Literally a 30 second job! With my hair tied in a side-plait, I wove a copper LED fairylight chain (from Kmart for less than $10) up through the braid and then around my head as a circlet. The battery pack/switch was carefully hidden underneath the sari draped over my shoulder (… at this point I will just say that being small-busted and having poor-fitting bras worked to my advantage lol) Unfortunately I was enjoying the party too much to get some good full shots to share with you here, but I will assure you that I received many compliments for both the sparkling sari and the dazzling lights adorning my head.
Last night was also my first time trying henna! Henna is a paste that comes in tubes; the technique for applying it to the skin is much like using a piping bag.
… this will gradually darken over the next few hours. The following picture is my own hand (previous the red background, wet-paste photo), taken the next morning when the orange henna stain had become more brown.
I had a lot of fun doing this, and took to it surprisingly well considering I am quite inept with a piping bag! When doing your own body (e.g. I drew on my left hand using my right), make sure to use a fresh tube of henna, as it can be quite tough to maintain constant pressure with one hand. The longevity and colour of henna depends on the quality of the henna used. Some tips to preserve it? Pat dry when washing hands (instead of rubbing with a towel) and avoid exfoliating.
Anyway, that’s that! Apologies for the poverty of headdress photos; I hadn’t originally intended to blog about the night until I saw that my lovely hosts had provided henna! Next time I will be more prepared, promise!
One last thought I had as a blogger with public posts was the issue of cultural appropriation. Sometimes it can be hard to interpret what is appropriate or not, so I thought of it as analogous to a more relatable topic; my wearing a sari is like when non-Chinese people wear cheongsams because they are beautiful garments (definitely not something I am offended at. If anything, it’s nice to see people embracing the fashions and styles of my heritage!) I refused to wear a bindi though; that DEFINITELY crosses the line 😛
Best wishes for 2017! Bises xx