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Sourcing Secrets With Interior Stylist Riddhika Jesrani

Irreverent doodlebug, elevated interior stylist for contemporary spaces and a jewellery designer on the rise, Riddhika Jesrani encompasses a myriad of talents.

  • 10 Jul '24
  • 10:31 am by Virender Singh

Sourcing Secrets – a series in which Design Pataki brings you the hottest insider tips on shopping for décor and art while uncovering fascinating finds from across the globe. 

Whether it’s crafting her offbeat, 3D-printed jewellery, or styling boutique apartments in a refreshingly maximalist vein, Riddhika Jesrani is a multidisciplinary artist who cannot keep still. Toting a major in communication design from Parsons, Jesrani shifted base from New York to Mumbai, drumming up a formidable portfolio of commercial and residential spaces in her wake — each adorned with a hallmark blend of vernacular and contemporary design elements. In conversation with Design Pataki, Jesrani’s abiding passion for local craftsmanship and the well-travelled cosmopolitanism she brings to spatial decorating, distinctly stand out.  

Interior stylist and decorator Riddhika Jesrani. The furniture here has been sourced from Magnolia Home while the elaborate, sumptuous looking rug is from Jaipur Rugs. (Image Credits: Lokesh Chikka)

With a penchant for large-scale murals and a layered approach to textures, Jesrani incorporates the memorabilia from her clients’ collections, reflecting a maturity beyond her years. After all a home– as the stylist concurs– is an auspicious sanctum of memories and must not fall prey to meaningless aestheticism. 

Bombay Sweet Shop is special to Jesrani because it was her first project in the interior styling and visual merchandising space. This repurposed warehouse turned sweet shop in Byculla was designed by Ar. Shonan Trehan Purie from interdisciplinary studio Labwerk (Image Credits: PHX India)

Design Pataki: Can you tell us how you style each space to feel unique?

Riddhika Jesrani: For me, mixing vintage and contemporary is where the magic happens. I tend to hunt for vintage design elements, which I can incorporate into the spaces that I curate and style. I also try to make custom pieces of furniture as much as possible to create a unique space each time.

Design Pataki: Can you share your top 5 places for uncovering hidden design gems in Mumbai?

Riddhika Jesrani: I always like going to vintage stores like Hesperus, Taherally’s, Phillips Antiques, Beg Borrow Steal, and Mahendra Joshi, to name a few. Unfortunately, Chor Bazaar isn’t what it used to be any more, however after a bit of scavenging and being nice to store owners you can still land some gems.

Also Read: Sourcing Secrets With Interior Stylist Samir Wadekar

This hideaway cottage was decorated, curated and styled by Jesrani and the team for a private client in Coonoor. Its furniture design and layout have been composed by Magnolia Home, artwork thoughtfully procured from The Gondwana Art Project, and the candle holders were handpicked from Studio Indigene. (Image Credits: Lokesh Chikka)

Design Pataki: Can you name some Mumbai-based product designers or local artisans that deserve more recognition?

Riddhika Jesrani: Studio Indigene is small but lovely. Their craftsmanship is great. I also get a lot of pieces made from Magnolia Home as well. For my murals, I like to collaborate with Raju, who is super talented and great to work with. Someone I am waiting to source from is Harshita Jhamtani whose products are lovely, and I look forward to incorporating them in my future projects. 

Design Pataki: What was a client purchase you wish you could’ve kept for yourself?

Riddhika Jesrani: It’s always mostly art! It’s been from galleries like Galleria Continua, Nature Morte, Geek Art Gallery, Tarq and even The Gondwana Art Project which works with local artisans. I’ve been very lucky with my recent projects where all my clients have bought stunning art, and I wish I could keep it all. It makes their homes and offices so special.

This dining nook bedecked with a tone-on-tone line mural is an example of layering for visual continuity. The artwork titled ‘Forest of Mushroom’ was sourced from AIRdrome. (Image Credits: Riddhika Jesrani)

Design Pataki: Could you tell us more about how you integrate an art mural within a curated space in a house?

Riddhika Jesrani: One of the first spaces I designed was a dining nook where this long table extended into the bar. The home was for a young family that hosted people often, so they wanted to incorporate elements that would allow a casual atmosphere that looked elegant. The idea of pattern-on pattern is something I continue to work with a lot to date. 

We designed the entire space without being tied to the mural because the wall I painted could handle the extra texture. Once the entire space was completed, with the art already acquired, it felt natural to do a floral outline mural which was tone-on-tone. It took 3 days to draw and paint the entire mural which brought the entire space together beautifully. 

The vase and art objects you can spot are pre-owned memorabilia of the homeowner, integrated eloquently by the decorator, elevating their look, and presence by juxtaposing them cleverly with printed fabrics. (Image Credits: Riddhika Jesrani)

Design Pataki: Could you share a tip on incorporating the knick-knacks of a homeowner collected over the years within your stylistic vocabulary?

Riddhika Jesrani: I love using knick knacks that a homeowner has been collecting over the years. It tells a story about them, gives the home the personality it deserves, makes the house unique, and gives it a personal touch. There are several ways of using the collectables. I’ve framed special pieces in box frames or under a cloche, sometimes mounted them on the walls to give them their due. As simpler solutions, I’ve used them on bookshelves to add as decor, on coffee tables or large ottomans — depending on the pieces. 

Also Read: Sourcing Secrets – The Chennai Edit With Gowri Adappa, Sruthi Reddy And Sunita Yogesh

Jesrani’s team styled and curated accessories for this Pali Hill residence designed by Mangesh Lungare. The vintage Devi bust and brass sculpture were procured from Phillips Antique while the marble modular candle stands are from Eeshan Kashyap. (Image Credits: Riddhika Jesrani)

Design Pataki: Which is your favourite art and design destination?

Riddhika Jesrani: I do a lot of mixing and matching which leads me to have a more maximalist approach to styling spaces and tend to curate from various places. Some favourites are Studio Klay, Wudapple, Eeshaan Kashyap, Made With Spin, Terrain Art, MoMA, Ikai Asai, Artisera, Gomaads, Cane Concept, and Dtale Modern.

Design Pataki: When styling a home, what’s your go-to splurge item that always elevates the space?

Riddhika Jesrani: Art is a joyful splurge! Sometimes you get lucky with affordable rugs, which instantly elevate a space. But I tend to customize more often than not, whether by creating a mural from scratch or sourcing the perfect furniture piece to bring a sense of uniqueness without breaking the bank. 

A lakeside holiday villa in Kamshet designed by Ar. Shonan Purie Trehan from Labwerk. SAR Studio’s Blue Loft sofa and lounge chairs envelop a central table crafted by GOMAADS under the design direction of LABmake. Riddhika Jesrani’s styling welds intuitively with the organic palette. (Image credits: Kuber Shah)

Design Pataki: What innovative design trend are you most excited about?

Riddhika Jesrani: I’m not big on trends, I believe a space needs to be personal, and unique and evoke an emotion each time you walk into it. So most spaces I work on aren’t trendy, but more timeless and current in their ways. I often use a mix of materials like acrylic, cork, metal etc. and textures to create something people will enjoy over the years, not just for a short period. 

However, I am working on one of my favourite commercial spaces right now, where we are incorporating biophilic design, but the space warrants it, so it wasn’t something we felt was forced or trendy. But if there were a couple of ways to get rid of loose dangly wires that come with decorative lamps, then I’m all for using that trend.

Design Pataki: What luxury purchase do you have your eye on next?

Riddhika Jesrani: Ken Kelleher’s ceramic sculpture pieces. They are fun, unique and beautiful. Especially the Bart Simpson sculpture, it’s hilarious!

Bimonthly audio episodes that promote thoughtful and incisive conversations with leading industry experts.


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