Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 4, Issue 39, Tuesday October 2, 2007




Check It Outk

Whirlpool spa pedicures @ Ban Thai

With the Eid season on full blast, and everyone on fire to get not just their shopping and iftar parties through with, but also their hair and nails and other beauty needs, beauty salons, like shopping malls, are coming up with unbelievable deals to take your breath away. Ban Thai has also come up with a few of its own offers. Quazi Quamrul Islam and his Ban Thai have been much celebrated over the last couple of years for their unique hairstyles and cuts and many have preferred this salon to the flashier, crowded ones. This Eid, Ban Thai is offering 15% discounts on haircuts to students of universities in Mohakhali, Gulshan and Banani. And why not the rest of the city? Ban Thai is in the Mohakhali area and worked out this special deal for these students in particular as most of its young clientele are already from these universities. 'Besides,' quips Mr. Quamrul, 'I'm sure that the beauty salons in Dhanmondi and other areas have plenty of things to offer to the students of those areas'.

The salon is also offering a very special and completely new service this season- the whirlpool spa pedicure system. It has brought in a special ceramic chair for the process and has thrown a manicure into the deal to make it an even more attractive package. The chair is an electronically operated one but being completely made of ceramic, ensures that nobody ever gets electrocuted while getting their nails done. The chair massages you during the pedicure and the small tub attached to it near the bottom is where you dip your feet into a rush of warm water. And if you are thinking to yourselves, all this for just getting your nails cleaned, filed and polished? This pedicure- manicure deal does a bit more than just the cleaning.

You go in, have your hands and feet massaged, herbal packs, sea salt scrub and paraffin wax treatments applied to your nails, and fingers and toes and come out rejuvenated and content. While you lay back and enjoy the deal, you are offered a glass of fresh juice in any flavor you desire. Now the deal may seem overpriced at Tk-1200 but the one and a half hours of pampering will seem worth it once you're through getting the treatment. To promote it, Quamrul Islam has invited some of the top designers in town to get the treatment done completely free any day this month after iftar when the salon is relatively less busy. Ban Thai has plans of eventually opening up a salon devoted completely to nail care where no haircuts, make-up, etc would be offered. This treatment was to observe the response of customers to judge how successful such a venture might be. So far, they say, the response has been very good and the initial complaints of how expensive the deal is have been all forgotten in the end. Mr. Islam thinks that feet are one of the most important parts of our bodies, holding up our entire body weight, so pampering them once a month should be good enough even if it comes with a heavy price tag. So, anyone willing to give it a shot can make appointments everyday between 10am and 8pm, except on Sundays when the salon is closed.

Ban Thai is also offering their services in Sylhet and Chittagang now, rendered only by trained professionals just like in Dhaka, so do check it out if you are there.

By Diya

Across The Border

Revving up for Eid in India

The festival season in India is once more dawning: Puja, Diwali and Eid. With millions of Muslims in India it is no wonder that Eid has come to stay. We investigated the Eid scene in India, and came back with some interesting findings.

Slice of life
For Fakeha Tarannum, an artist and devout Muslim, Eid is celebrated with fervour: “The world begins with Allah and will end with Allah,” she points out. Eid for her is a joyous festival spent with family and friends, and involving flamboyant, meals the donning of new clothes, and exchange of Eidi.

Laila Tyabji, freelance designer, writer and founder member and chairperson of Dastakar, a society for crafts and craftspeople, hails from an illustrious family. Her father, Eid has always been 'a moveable feast'. These days she usually holds an open house for both Muslims and non-Muslims, including craftspeople , friends and family, with Eid delicacies, and there are gifts distributed. “This day helps us in renewing our culture and emotional identity,” she asserts.

Faizal Alkazi, a noted theatre personality and educational consultant, hailing from a multi-faith background, he points out that his 'westernised' family is not particularly religious. The family celebrates many festivals such as Diwali, Eid and Christmas, and each event sees a lot of socialising with friends and family. His open-minded family, he concludes, leaves each generation free to follow the religion of their choice.

The Fashion Scene
Laila Tyabji of Dastkar, describes the festival season as an “exciting time”. In her view, people have taken to fusion attire contemporised saris and kurtas melded with western cuts, and embellished with traditional embroideries, tie -dye, sequins, zardosi and mirror work. Vibrant colours are in demand, she says, adding “psychedelic colours” such as shocking pink, acid yellow and lime green have taken the place of the muted beige earth colours so much in vogue a few years ago.

Saveen Sharma, of Fabindia Overseas Pvt. Ltd., speaks about Fabindia's plans for the festival season. On the anvil are a whole new range of embroidered and embellished garments such as kurtas, printed saris and dupattas, while Maheshwar and Chanderi fabrics are also on display. Saveen says that the outlet believes in “straight and timeless lines” in its garments. There is also the Fab @ Large, offering plus sizes. For the teens, there is a section heavy on fusion,” says Saveen, “ While the embellishments and fabrics may be ethnic, the concepts are modern to cater to the teens.”

Fusion is the key word. “The silhouettes are not 100 percent Indian nor 100 percent western. The finished product is an adaptation of both western and Indian influences,” says Neeru, adding that while traditional skills and materials go into the creations, the end product is contemporary and new. 'Warm colours', she points out, are the rage today. In this category are rust, deep red and charcoal. She uses a lot of chocolate brown because it “lends itself well to combine with other colours”.

At the top end of the design spectrum is the renowned Ritu Kumar, certainly not a name unknown to us. A visitor to her eponymous outlet at the Crescent Mall, New Delhi is greeted with a dazzling array of hand embroidered zardosi, ari and kashida embroidery. While ari incorporates silver thread, zardosi flaunts heavy gold embroidery and kashida is thread work, the colours of the kurtas, saris and lehangas are vibrant. Among the popular hues are turquoise, fuchsia, blacks and reds.

Another innovation this season is pastel colours. She has a unique ability to evolve each collection into creative styling, translating textures and embellishments into refreshing new and unexpectedly contemporary silhouettes making her work particularly relevant from India 's fashion point of world view. Ritu's is also known for dressing all the Miss Indias for their International contests as well.

So for those of you Bangladeshis planning to go to India for a quick trip before eid check these outlets out and add a touch of variety to your eid wardrobe.

By Kavita Charanji


On The Cover

Teen age is the best time to find your look. Skip to our centre story for the 411 on the season's trends.
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed
Wardrobe: Anokhi
Makeup: Farzana Shakil


Waste not…

We all love spending money during Eid. We might already have two hundred pairs of shoes yet Eid-mentality calls for yet another new pair. Let's face it- the consumerism that was once only associated with Christmas has now crossed borders to taint Eid as well. New clothes, new shoes, new furnishings- “new” seems to affect everything come Eid time. Is this wasteful thinking necessary. Absolutely not. Can this money be handled better? Of course. But how?

Saving never hurts
Instead of spending all that money on things that we really don't need, why not save it? Put it in one of those accounts that keeps your hand out of the cookie jar and pays big in interest. And come the rainy days or when you want to go on holiday or when you need a new set of tyres, it'll come in handy.

Something you really need
If you must buy something, why not get something you really need. Whether it's a new washer or a work desk or new light fixtures, spending your money wisely is the way to go. After all, you'll keep on procrastinating under the pretence that you're broke. Instead, just get it now.

If you can't help it
In the end if you really can't help it then do get yourself that new outfit and those new earings. But try to control how much you spend and buy something that looks worth the waste.
It's your money and how you spend it totally depends on you. But spending with prudence never hurt anyone, so give it a try.

By Tahiat-e-Mahboob



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