If you are at a point in your life where colours, fabrics, and tasteful decor have taken over your social media account, then the India Design ID 2020 is where you must be. As a person often found fawning over quirky decorations, I was excited to be introduced to some new masterpieces. But nothing could have prepared me for what was my first experience of the event. Lights blazing, music rolling over conversations, and a setup that requires you to tilt your head all the way back for a complete look, this event is seriously larger-than-life. Overwhelmed on the preview night, I went back the next morning to look at the pieces I had missed—so many beautiful exhibits were unveiled the night before that I couldn’t resist a thorough inspection.
There are seven tents, each labelled with a vibrant font made of reusable materials. The ‘Design’ tent showcased different products and decor, ranging from sleek and classy to quirky and eccentric. A massive area was designated to the ‘What’s Your Story?’ section, featuring objects curated by Sandeep Khosla and Tania Singh Khosla. Items were categorised on various aspects, speaking of sustainability, conscious consumption and local crafts. My favourites were undoubtedly the Whimsy and Joy, and the Nostalgia collection. I already had a smile stretched across my face by the time I read the description that mentioned “making you smile every time you glance at it”. As I stepped out, I noticed an exhibit under the name of Smita Singh that has mastered the chaos of elements. Loud and whimsical, it is a considerably small section that deserves a lot of eyeballs (I confess as I sit in my multi-coloured room decorated with strange-looking tidbits).
The ‘Decoration’ tents—there are two—feature freshly built, complete house decor ideas that put my cluttered room to shame. Living room setups, bedroom makeovers, and seating area designs covering spacious sections are carefully placed throughout the tents. The collaboration of Nicobar, and Nilaya by Asian Paints has resulted in a mystical maze. As I walked in, I was greeted by their new collection—Luna.
You’ll come across several such areas of whimsy. Marvelling at the wallpaper designs framed on the walls, I walked into a room completely clad in mirrors (even the floor and roof!), it even featured Silver Night—the wallpaper of the year as per Asian Paints.
I finally walked out into an area that seemed identical to the entry passage. Unique is the buzzword for the showcase by Odyssey, who displayed and explained various styles of complete stone architecture (the Indo-Islamic display is mesmerising). Jaipur rugs, spread over four sections, were hard to ignore, especially with their new collection in collaboration with Matteo Cibic. And the Bent Chair display by Shivan And Narresh brought tribal arts to contemporary furniture—a combination we completely approve of.
The ‘VIP Lounge’, for a quick second, seemed like a secret club I shouldn’t be infiltrating. However, the view of the rich teak wood furniture peeking out of the tent was enough for me to shed my nerves. The entire setup is luxury amped up to maximum. Theodore Alexander’s creations are enchanting, to say the least. Some things that caught my eye were the sleek fireplace, the removable three-piece stool, and the highlight—a desk with a miniature library, complete with faux books, staircases, chambers and hidden drawers. As a bookworm, I felt a tad low knowing I do not own it.
The displays by the collaboration of 20 designers—Iram Sultan, Ekta Parekh, Abin Chaudhari, Nina Puri, Shantanu Garg, and many more of the like—left me wanting more. One of their exhibits, a lit-up silhouette with wings made of corks marked by words, was an interesting look. However, I felt that most of the displays lack recall value.
I wouldn’t call it an anomaly if you keep getting drawn to the ColourNext Trends tent. The blast of blue it flaunts on the front is just a teaser of what lays inside. ColourNext by Asian Paints is a one-of-a-kind annual colour trend forecast in the country—the tent represents this brilliantly. Divided into four themes—Blend, Potent, Sonic, and Mystique, each has been moulded into an artistic display of colours. Potent and Sonic are undoubtedly a must-see. Pastels like Faded Salmon and Ivy Green in Potent give you a palette that somehow perfectly encapsulates style with quirk. It reflects the shift in the society’s preference to want less, but concentrated experiences. Sonic, on the other hand, celebrates our engagement with sound. Radiant Peony, Pink Clam, Indian Cotton, and Vitality scream on the walls. The experience is enhanced by the addition of thoughtful elements, such as record players and phones mounted on the walls playing podcasts and nature sounds. The sections also feature many items by designers at the event, and Curiosity, the colour of the year and Silver Night, the wallpaper of the year.
The ‘Symposium’ tent is hosting sessions by internationally-renowned experts in the field of design and architecture. The likes of Rahul Mehrotra, Sebastian Herkner, Marc Thorpe, Bijoy Ramachandran, Martand Khosla, Timothy Corrignan, Nani Marquina, and many more will be parting with their knowledge over the course of the three days. I had the opportunity to sit for Mehrotra and Herkner’s sessions, and left inspired, educated, and with a chuckle.
If you visit, make a memory at the photobooth—it’s bright and inviting. Also feast at the popular Flurys cafe or the adjoining CAARA cafe! The last tent—New Decoration—features a marvellous curation by Iram Sultan. It has style without compromising colours.
The India Design ID 2020 is being held at NSIC grounds, Okhla Phase III, New Delhi, from February 13 to 15, 2020. 120 renowned designers and brands will showcase their work.