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A Homely Celebration

Friday, September 25, 2015

There is something about household Ganpati celebrations that has its own, unique charm. It may be the cosy environment, or the level of creativity displayed by devotees, but these are truly a sight to see. The 48hrs Team brings you a pick of the best Ganpati idols from across the city

“This year was the 21st time we brought bappa into our home. It’s always a great experience — our house takes on a pure, positive and holy aura. We start preparing around a month before — from cleaning the house to making mithais and finalising the decorations, the entire experience is amazing till visarjan. It’s also the best week because our entire family comes over to visit; friends and relatives we don’t get to meet throughout the year also take time out to come and visit us during the festival.”
— Pratik Uppal, Navi Mumbai

“Every year, my family and I celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi with a lot of devotion and love. My mother and I started celebrating the festival five years ago and every year, we’ve had a different, flower-based theme for the décor. This time, we had a vedi set with blue, purple and white orchids, while the idol was adorned with jewels and also sported a pagri. The fragrant flowers, diyas and chants of aarti spread a spiritual and holy atmosphere through our house.”
— Tulsi Kumar, Andheri

“This year, our theme for the embellishments on the Ganesh murti was blue. So, we incorporated several blue hues into the decorations. We also used a lot of mix and match techniques with blue and gold dupattas. We also added in fresh hibiscus flowers to accentuate the festive mood. Our murti was adorned with pearl bracelets and earrings. My husband first visualises the overall look and then prepares everything himself from scratch. This adds a personal touch to our festivities.” 
— Roshni Rao, Andheri

“The experience of Ganesh Chaturthi has always been overwhelming for us. This is the 49th year that we are celebrating the festival at home, and it gets better every year! Sure, the five days of Ganesh Chaturthi are tiring, but more than that, they are blissful. All our family members and friends gather together to seek the blessings of Lord Ganesha. We also make modaks, that everyone loves! The decoration takes up most of our time, but it’s a rewarding spiritual experience.”
— Nagesh Shelar, Goregaon

“This year we kept our décor simple. We got a match made to the elegance of our Dagadusheth Ganapati. We also stitched blue shimmer curtains to complement the makar. We chose blue because it symbolises spirituality, faith, calmness and serenity.”
— Swati Sawant, Vasai

“We have been celebrating Ganesh Chaturthi for over 20 years now. Since we’re the only ones in our family who celebrate the festival, almost all our relatives, those living in Mumbai as well as a few from Goa, come to our home to celebrate together. This year, we decided to go eco-friendly and brought home a brass idol.”
— Shreeja Mahambre, Malad

“This is the 11th year of our Ganpati celebrations. Our friends and relatives take time out of their schedules to visit us every year. Our idol is custom-made — we give the artist a  conceptual idea about how we want the idol to look. It’s a great family affair with a number of homemade delicacies that everyone helps to make.”
— Pinakin Salvi, Goregaon

“If you look closely at our Ganesha idol in the centre, you can see that it’s sitting on a dragon! We usually see people using flowers, lights, diyas and thermocol temples as decorations. But, I wanted to create unique décor. No other theme would have been looked better than this one. It’s obvious that there is a more Indian touch, but in Chinese lore, the dragon was a benevolent creature with powers to bring rain, floods, and even hurricanes to a land. Along with this ability, the dragon signifies power, strength, and good luck. So, our theme this year can also be considered as a tribute to it.”
— Ajay Valecha, Chembur

“Our inspiration for the Ganpati decorations always comes from my mother-in-law, Susheela. She is the creative genius behind all our Ganpati celebrations. In fact, she has been doing this almost single-headedly for 36 years! This year, she wanted our theme to be golden — she even picked special jewellery for our idol and used a golden sequin-inspired background that showcases our wishes over the years stitched together. She creates handmade garlands and decorations (wherever possible) to add her special touch to our  Ganpati celebrations!”
— Aakanksha Gupta, Santacruz

“We have been getting Ganpati home for over 43 years, using a different theme every year. This year’s theme is the 10 avatars of Lord Vishnu. The bright yellow background behind Lord Ganesha is the sun that is symbolic of Lord Ganesha shining like a million suns, showering his blessings on everyone. All our family members, relatives, friends, neighbours and even my father’s office staff visit our home for the darshan.
— Kartik Negandhi, Mumbai

“Our entire family of 50 comes together for this festival. We bring bappa home for just a day and a half, but it’s a fun experience! The décor and even our idol is one of a kind, and is a happy result of our hard work and creativity. This is the most eagerly-awaited festival for our family.”
— Hiren and Hina Vaghani, Malad

“Every year, we welcome Lord Ganesha with utmost love and affection. This year, we thought we would do things differently, while keeping the basics the same. We created a floral facade with wild orchids in the shape of a lotus, to adorn the idol. Each petal was decorated with orchids in varying colours, including blue, white and purple. Lord Ganesha exudes a mystical charm of his own, so there's not much you need to do in terms of decorating the space around him. It is a festival for happiness, devotion and fervour, one that we really look forward to.
— Megha Iyer, Oshiwara

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