Saturday, 22 December 2012

Reversed norms

The multitudes of checks and colours one see floating on native shoulders when traveling these parts, that's a sight which sticks to mind as an essential local couture

Upscaling the 100% cotton handloom fabric, traditionally used to drape women in sarees and sometimes men in mundu, we try to gently bridge the gap between traditional & modern and start something new. The reversible, reusable, conveniently foldable bag, is something fun you could carry to work or a weekend shopping. Start your day with bold checks or peppy colours, carry a bit of Kerala upon your shoulders. 

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

Visual Metaphors

Fort Cochin: Architecture

The start to understand the spice market left us standing at its doors with a camera.
Architecture spoke and we listened to the eased persuasions of the changing hands, from the star of David to Islamic arches, from Roman kuruss (cross) to Dutch siblings. 

Weathered textures revealed the layers of absorbed cultures.  And at heart the Spice market, which always remained the Malabar port, has welcomed the world which traveled to its shores.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

The jungle giants

The giants of Periyar, their life and ways is brought to life with more design in playful colours, few words and more talk. In a wall hung poster, which also could be pulled out into 6 separate posters, we talk about human idiosyncrasies paralleled in traits of a tiger and an elephant. 
Read out to know which is your favourite, the lazy wildcat or the intelligent ele.

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Whether weathered or simply local?

The weathered textures of hand painted walls are but humble submissions to the gods of this country, who run their democracy with rain. Drawing inspiration from local graffiti, fused with in-vogue design and cuts, is born a sturdy-canvas bag thats ready to travel any weather, any distance.

This limited edition canvas bag makes for a perfect 'namaskaram' to the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, starting tomorrow. 100% cotton canvas bag silk screened with authentic, rugged, picked-off the-street local malayalam lettering in sun bleached earthy colors. 

To make a purchase, call our Kochi studio outlet 0484 4012392, or drop in anytime between 9:30 am - 5: 30 pm. We're located at #102, canal road, girinagar, cochin-20.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

Fuchsia Avatar

Viakerala introduces a trendy fuchsia melange tshirt in the Flying Elephant series.
Designed for a feminine fit;this one makes for a cool classic.

Crested with the flying elephant, and made in 100% cotton, these second skins are available in all sizes exclusively for women.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

Loopy Letter Love

Read it, turn it, flip it, or even hang it upside down, a Malayalam letter is going to intrigue the reader. It does not matter if you can read Malayalam text or are lost in its curves and loops, it would still make sense with its asymmetrical balance. 

Dipped in colours that invariably catch the eye; the deep blue sky and the lush green, the tiled roof's red and the sun bathed ochre. 

The Malayalam letters are the simplest memoir of a complex Kerala. 

These letter forms are available in two different thicknesses. Check them out in person at the studio outlet; #102, Canal Road, Girinagar, Cochin. Or call us at 0484 4012392, any time between 10 am and 5 pm.

Friday, 2 November 2012

Happy Birthday Kerala!

Look what the flying elephant brought in on Kerala Day - here's a tribute to Keralam and the backwaters; a deep violet 100% cotton tshirt thats modern and funky. 'Local' just got a whole lot cooler!
Keralam Backwater Typography

The malayalam lettering (Keralam) is hand rendered in a verdant green against a hint of the Kerala backwater imagery. Available in all sizes for women.
The new studio outlet of Viakerala is now open for prelaunch at #102,  Canal Road, Girinagar, Cochin. Please call us between 10 am & 5:30 pm or drop in to see the latest collection.
Telephone: 0484 4012392.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

Omo + Kol share playtime pics

Baby Kol is half mallu and lives in New York, he met the viakerala elephants last month and they had quite a chat! Kol can't wait to visit this place called Kerala and hang out with his crew.

Baby Omo on the other hand, lives in India but again far away from kerala, and he's training his pet elephant 'Appu' to do some serious circus acts. 

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

A girl called India

Last summer, India Menninghaus spent a few months doing research and typography design at Viakerala. Heres an excerpt from her writings about working with the malayalam alphabet:

'Listening to Malayalam is exactly the same as trying to decipher the signs around the city: strings of dips and swirls that all blend together. The language is beautiful, and looks as friendly as it sounds with geometric curves & elaborate letter forms that loop back onto themselves. The spoken tongue seems to be peppered with an occasional English word, but never quite enough for me to understand the context of the conversation. After finally getting my hands on a copy of ‘Learn Malayalam in 30 Days’ I worked to twist my tongue into the unfamiliar sounds. It is not a concise language by any means, which I learned as I practiced the translation of 
“what’s up?”= enthe okke unde visheshangal 

During my time here, I worked on a typeface design inspired by the malayalam letterform, which turned out modern with a slight ornamental flavor of the local script.' - India Menninghaus

Friday, 24 February 2012

Elephant posse

Check out these cool elephants hanging out at Viakerala, thekkady.
Once you get to know them, you're sure to be friends for life.
Did you know that an elephant's memory is ever lasting?

Thursday, 23 February 2012

hand woven + hand made = hand bag

Via Kerala is seeking to conserve creative traditions in a number of ways.  By experimenting with and re-working hand-crafted designs, by utilizing local craftsmen and women to produce our designs, and by using locally hand-made fabrics within our designs, where possible. Skills such as needlework, weaving and basket weaving are commonly found throughout the state. By exploring and improving designs, we are attempting to create more aesthetically appealing, unique products that also serve a practical function, help raise awareness of our local crafts, and keep these practices thriving. Our reversible bags made with locally woven fabrics are proving very popular.

Text by Leyla Temiz. Photographs by Deepthi.

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Twisting Type, Twisting Tongue

A beautifully curly script, Malayalam’s loopy curves co-incidentally symbolise the movements the tongue makes during pronunciation, and some characters are ever so hard for a non-native to pronounce. In some instances Malayalam takes your tongue to places it’s never been before! 
 At Viakerala, we have been researching on local hand-painted signs, and working on typographic designs that explore the Malayalam script and language, in a bid to bring fresh and exciting Malayalam-based typography and design to the attention of travelers and local young ‘mallus’ who may have moved to foreign tongues. 
Photographs & text by Leyla Temiz.
If you have some crazy cool malayalam typography that you dont mind sharing, drop us a note here, or email us.

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Wild 5 FIve - the heroes of Periyar

It goes without saying that the location inspired the ‘Wild 5 Five’ range of awareness accessories. Featuring 5 iconic endemic species, diverse in their appearance and behaviour, Wild 5 Five is designed to raise awareness of the Periyar forest and its precious inhabitants. If you are in Thekkady, take some time out to get familiar with the Asian Elephant, Bengal Tiger, Nilgiri Tahr, Lion tailed Macaque & the state bird of Kerala, the Great Indian Pied Hornbil.
Wild 5 Five - the champions of Periyar!

Photographs & text by Leyla Temiz

Monday, 20 February 2012

Namaskaram, this way in

The fact that the Viakerala store and the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary lie in the same corner of the world is also representative of the more obscure similarities between the two initiatives. In the same way conservationists in national parks seek to protect, research, sustain, and promote wildlife and the interest surrounding it, the Via Kerala team is working hard to document, conserve and rejuvenate the traditional crafts and language of Kerala, through exploration, design and promotion.

 Photographs & text by Leyla Temiz.

official, officially, finally

After so much planning and test runs, the Viakerala shop finally opens on Feb 5, 2012.  Yes the Kerala villaku made an appearance to honor the moment. (gave the designers some time to contemplate a new interpretation for the traditional lamp!)

Photography by Milo Inman

Deputy director Sanjayan Kumar, from Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary and Dr. Veeramani (who has been kind enough to be our research hotline for Wild5Five) joined us for a hot cuppa and some kappa! What started as an evening of dialogue has incredible possibility for knowledge exchange and a larger awareness model.