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Kitsch Kitsch Hota Hai: The Bright and Beautiful World of Poppadum Art

Bright colours, bold ideas

Design ideas with personality and a bit of humour from the house of Poppadum Art

Poppadum Art by Saanwari

What does design mean to you?

A splash of colour?

A dash of eccentricity?

A pinch of personality?

A modicum of kitsch put together with a smidgen of sophistication?

We all have a different design aesthetic, with some doing “cute” while others prefer “sleek” and yet others “monochrome”.

And that’s why we are a little bit in love with the designs of Saanwari from Poppadum Art. With their bold colours, abundant pop-culture influences, and a slight sense of humour; her designs are perfect for us (spending time at her online store has become a bit of an addiction!). What’s more, Saanwari’s designs lend themselves beautifully to customisation and personalisation, making them the perfect gift for your decor happy friend!

Here are some of our favourite Poppadum Art pieces, and a little bit about the person behind them.

Thanks for talking to us Saanwari. How do you start a typical day- with a cup of coffee, a newspaper, a run on the treadmill? What are some of the things you look forward to every morning?

Coffee, newspaper and some social media and news apps..though I’m really trying to cut down on the social media bit!

Could you tell us a little bit about some of your design inspirations from your childhood? What are some of your current design obsessions?

I think I’m hugely influenced by the whole ‘jugaad’ phenomena that we see around us in India. I’ve seen it in my house growing up, I’ve seen it outside in shops and at street vendors, in ultra urban set-ups and at grass root levels – it’s just about everywhere. That, I think, is what has shaped my design sensibility to quite an extent. That is also why I don’t see products as what they’re meant to be, I’m always looking at the alternate purpose they can serve.

Quill Pens


Could you tell us a little bit about Popaddum Art? What inspired you to start a design-oriented business?

Ever since I can remember, I always wanted to be in a creative career. Before I started PoppadumArt, I was an account director in advertising. But after a few years, work started stagnating (though I sorely miss the excitement of that industry!) and I started dabbling in glass painting – something I had picked up in school. What started as a hobby started shaping up into a career option so I eventually quit my job and decided to do this wholeheartedly. That is where it all started!

Do you see yourself as a designer or as an entrepreneur with an eye for design? What aspect of your business do you think makes it so distinct?

I see myself more as a designer with an entrepreneurial bent of mind, in the sense that I find the design bit more compelling than the entrepreneurial piece. The aspect that, in my mind, makes my business distinct is context. Almost everything we make has context to it. Or is taken out of context. For example: there’s great context in painting a traffic scene on a jam bottle. But then we took ordinary kitchen bartans out of context and turned them into cute planters.

Kadhai Planters

Who are some of the Indian designers- be it fashion, jewellery, interiors or others – whose works you are particularly fond of?

The only name that comes to mind instantly is Pavitra Rajaram’s- I’m currently tripping on her work – absolutely beautiful and elegant. If I can go non-Indian, I’d say Ashley Thomas.A Pot Of Bling

What would you say are your favourite material possessions- the things you’d run out of your house with in case of a fire?

Well, I’ve just done up my house after our move to Delhi, so no fire for a while please!!  I’d probably be trying to drag absolutely everything out of the house…and possibly getting my neighbours to help as well!!!

What is your favuorite book from those you read last year? Favourite movie??

Unfortunately, I did not get bitten by the reading bug (bookworm?), though I do follow some blogs – Design Taxi, Fast Company, Houzz being some favorites.

My favourite movie from last year has to be ‘Rush’. Absolutely brilliant direction and acting.

Jam Jar Lamp

Lastly, here is a question we like to ask everyone at My Big Red Bag. If you could have dinner with any one person from history, who would it be, and why?

Wow..can’t think of anyone from history but would’ve certainly loved to chat up Steve Jobs and in current times, Larry Page.  Both have so successfully built two of the greatest start-up success stories of our times with businesses that have, and continue to, chart out very interesting paths. They’ll certainly have some very very inspiring stories to share!

 The lovely artefacts you see in this post include Kadhai Planters,  Technicolor JamLampsA Pot Of Bling and Quill Pensall available online at 

My Big Red Bag brings original content inspired by life’s joys and passions. Find more inspiration in our Decor Happy Issue, and stay tuned to our latest content by following us on Twitter and FB!

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