Rangoli virtuosos Nila Vora and Rekha Doshi share their passion for creating unique floral works of art
1/23/2019 10:25:09 PM
|written By : Parul Trivedi-Shah|
Corporate and wedding rangolis have not only breezed their way into the design and décor world but have gone beyond the rice powder, acrylic moulds, and coloured rice rangoli route. When a lush carpet of flower rangoli in colours as vivid as shades of blue and purple, pink and brown stuns you at the next wedding do, it is likely to be a creation of the duo Nila Vora and Rekha Doshi under the label NR Flower Rangoli.
Friends for more than three decades, Nila, 60, and Rekha, 63, turned professionals after creating exquisite flower rangolis for the weddings of their friends’ children four years ago following the masterpiece created by Nila for Rekha’s daughter’s wedding in 2007.
Experience paves the way for unique creative expressions, likewise NR Flower Rangoli has upped the artistic quotient by incorporating logos or messages in the rangolis.
Says Nila, “We create bespoke designs which require us to think out of the box and to keep pushing the norms. For example, Twitter and Pratt & Whitney wanted to embody the traditional art form and celebrate their brand at the same time. We ended up creating their logos (the bird for Twitter and the eagle for Pratt & Whitney) while incorporating traditional Indian designs around them. They were amazed.”
Retaining fresh flower petals to create rangoli gives it a 3D-like effect. Inspiration comes from nature’s bounty of plants and birds.
“Though there is no monetary investment, we spend considerable time on marketing, planning, designing and operation work such as flower selections to suit the designs and keep innovating so that we can maintain our relationship with our regular clients,” says the duo. The event-service-oriented business took off by word of mouth and advanced into marketing via Facebook and direct marketing, helping the duo to expand their client base.
The constant sourcing for good quality flowers has led them to form deep bonds with florists in Little India. To accommodate certain requests by clients, they use dyed rice or dyed flowers if they do not find flowers of the exact colour because these artists “do not like to compromise on delivering a quality piece of art”.
So what is their dream rangoli after 50-plus rangolis to their credit professionally? Rekha shares, “We have done rangolis the size of a queen-size bed and in some instances up to nine feet big. While being the biggest is not the goal, what would definitely be interesting would be to have a large open street or space and convert it into a floral carpet like the ones they do annually in Belgium and Italy. So if India Se can make it happen, we are ready. We would love to try a cultural fusion by designing a rangoli for non-Indian weddings or incorporating abstract art designs.”
So what’s next in store for the duo? They reveal, “Our passion will always remain. We will continue to maintain relations with our regular clients (especially during Diwali) and work towards expanding our client base. As our business is seasonal based on festivals, weddings and events, we plan to use our spare time to conduct classes so that we can help the young learn and preserve the tradition of rangoli.”