Bright pink faces with doorknobs on their foreheads greet visitors at Bhupal Ramnathkar’s 13th-floor haven in Prabhadevi, Mumbai. Coupled with a neon green acrylic nameplate, the entrance to the apartment is as bold and offbeat as what lies within.
Ramnathkar, dressed in a blue floral shirt and white linen trousers, complemented by a pair of blue glasses, says he relied on his personal taste and professional expertise (he’s the managing director of graphic design firm Umbrella Design) to create a vibrant home, which cost him approximately Rs15 lakh.
The flooring company sent Ramnathkar the wrong sample: a grey wood print, with daisies scattered about (see inset). Luckily, he loved the quirkiness of the design and used it throughout the house.
“We didn’t have a big budget, but we have creativity,” says Ramnathkar. He and his wife mixed Victorian motifs, French Art Nouveau posters, and bright acrylic neons (dominated by his favourite neon green). With so many eye-catching elements, it could have been a disaster, but Ramnathkar left the decor minimalist and offset the bold accessories with white walls.
Also See Framed Art Nouveau posters hang on the entrance walls. Ramnathkar says he loves to collect such works.
Ramnathkar’s balcony overlooks the Bandra-Worli Sea Link.
The kitchen cabinets have been made in the same style as the wardrobe. Ramnathkar used bottles he bought in Morocco to decorate the swinging kitchen doors.
Ramnathkar found this jukebox, which doubles as a cassette player, in Paris.
In the bedroom, Ramnathkar laser-printed designs on the furniture and then covered them with coloured acrylic sheets.
The two-bedroom apartment is breezy in mid-summer, and has a view of the newly constructed Bandra-Worli Sea Link. Work on the interiors was completed three months ago but many of the things in the apartment have been collected over the years and most of the furniture has been designed by Ramnathkar himself. “Everything in the house is mismatched, yet they are parts of a whole.”
Photographs by Abhijit Bhatlekar / Mint