ode boutique

Artist Interview

Shana Gulati

May 13, 2016


The name Shana has many meanings and stories of origin. In Hindi, it means intelligent. In Yiddish, it means beautiful. In Hebrew, the word is akin to "rose". Enchanted and refined are among other definitions. Somehow, all possibilities seem perfectly fitting to describe both Shana Gulati and her eponymous collection of fine jewelry. Lawyer-turned-designer who splits time between New York and India, Shana is the embodiment of a self-made adventurer, something we always aspire to. We are so lucky and excited to have Shana and her hand-crafted collection here at Ode on Friday, May 13th, from 6-8pm. Join us for cocktails and some seriously drool-worthy jewelry...or, as we call it: "drool"ery. 

What inspires you?
Everything and anything inspires me. My ideas come usually from both my daily life living in NYC and my travels, from the trinkets I’ve picked up to the day to day things I’ve seen. Having the luxury of living in one of the most amazing, diverse, fashion forward, creative, free spirited, individualistic cities in the world paired with having been born into one of the most colorful and beautiful cultures that physically thrives in a visually stimulating manner (INDIA!!!), it’s hard not to be inspired all the time. So it’s a blend of my everyday and my gift of being handed a culture that is nothing less than amazing and a creative force.


How do you name your collections?
That’s the million dollar question… So far they have been named after my niece; the word for love in Hindi; where I was for my 40th … it’s really just about where I am physically and mentally with how the collections came to be. The latest collection is going to be called Zazvata, which derives its root from Urdu to mean continuity. The reason I chose this word is that this particular collection is taking what I have already created and adding to it, to continue the creativity behind each piece to create something new and unique in its own right.

What are your favorite places to go in India?
To this day I have been very quick in my trips, as they really have to be focused around work so it would have to be Jaipur. One of my favorite things to do is to make sure to go to the garden to take in the scent of jasmine in the early morning before the day becomes insane and chaotic. I have made myself a promise that I will visit Sikkim (the city I was born in while my Dad was an officer in the Indian Army) and Ladakh in the Himachal region.

Photo credit: Steve McCurry

If you were one accessory, what would you be and what would you look like?
A big glorious ring for sure!!!  My thinking is that what can’t an accessory do for a woman! It can change her mood; it can give
 the outfit a whole new look; it can be the centerpiece of what she’s wearing; it
 can be that one piece that catches your eye! Accessories, especially jewelry (because by nature it is feminine) can just make a girl feel that extra whatever she wants to feel. Be it sexy, be it bold and different, be it subtle and understated, be it chic, or be it casual, or just unique without having to say a word. Accessories tend to be conversation starters too! They are a way to connect, a way to 
stand out, a way to make one feel just a little extra special.

What does your Spring in New York look like?
My spring in New York seems to be different year to year, it’s a lot of travel, it’s a lot of work to be honest as the Fall collection is underway so it usually involves a trip to India. It’s a time to be creative and super assertive to get out a new collection!

How did your life change going from a lawyer to a jewelry designer? How did your wardrobe change?
How hasn’t it changed for me… I used to think so many doors not opening for me in law was a sign that it was a reflection on me. Turns out it was for a bigger reason than I could have imagined at that point in time. It forced me to find a passion and a path that I never knew existed within me and one that would bring me so much happiness and love for both India and the team of people I have pulled together to make it all happen. It’s actually a little family I have built, which would have never happened had I not embarked on a road I didn’t even know existed.  My life is not only richer and fuller, but it’s got purpose and meaning in what I do because it’s not just jewelry that we are creating, it’s livelihoods that are being supported, it’s giving back in a way to a country that gave me so much.

What compels you to design jewelry?
Designing jewelry because it involves so many things in life I love. It allows me to be creative, free spirited, colorful (figuratively and literally), it allows me to have a lasting connection with the two places in the world that have help mold me into who I am (New York and my Indian heritage), it allows me to help make a woman, no matter from what walk of life, to feel feminine, like a princess or like a rock star or like an elegant lady or like a young fun girly girl or whomever or whatever she wants to channel by wearing one of my pieces. Jewelry design is my outlet but it allows my connectivity to other women in helping them just love something that’s only theirs.

When the sun is out, what song do you play?
It’s not going to be a particular song, but it will be something that will be energetic and get me going!

What is your spirit stone?

Is there any advice you can offer to an artist starting a business?
Yes, do not focus on the doors that have closed, focus on the ones that are slightly ajar and that you can push your way through, because you can and you will.  It’s daunting to think about the whole picture in the near future, so don’t. Just focus on that moment.

Artist Interview

SmuttLab Sour Beer Tasting at Ode!

April 8, 2016

Smuttlabs does with beer what we like to do with fashion: experiment with different pallettes and have fun mixing things up. Sometimes, it gets a little wild...but in a good way. Join us tonight (Friday, April 8th) for a poetry reading, featuring Dora Malech and Sadie Dupuis, and enjoy sour beer tasting by New England's very own Smuttlabs. We asked Smuttlabs' "Tech" Jessica Rice, to tell us what each beer would wear to an Ode party. Here's what she said:

This is our classic, year round saison sour, she would wear the classic little black dress.


Mysterious and romantic, she would wear a flowing maxi dress.

She's fun, tart, and bold. She would wear anything with a bold graphic print.

Artist Interview

Dora Malech

April 8, 2016

                                                                                                                     "Hover" by Dora Malech

Dora Malech doesn’t drive a black car. She doesn’t have a Labrador. She owns an aging Chihuahua named Angel and drives through Baltimore in a sedan the color of a clementine. She knows all the words to “Semi-Charmed Life” and half of Shakespeare. She can rock galaxy-printed spandex like no other and take a figure of speech and explode it. When have you heard a word multiply? When has a punchline made you cry? Meet Dora Malech: author (of Shore Ordered Ocean and Say So), poet, teacher, artist, blogger, activist, and winner of the “rhymes with” contest. 

What were your first words…as a poet?
I had a pink diary in which I wrote daily journal entries from front to back and poems from back to front when I was a kid, so my daily life and my imagination kind of met in the middle, as they should. I definitely remember using the word “lagoon” in one of those poems.

What does your Bitmoji wear when she’s writing?
I’ll let her answer that:


What would you rhyme with “rhymes with”?
In a poem—
               time’s myth.
         lime’s pith.

But also… Grimes GIF? 


Best scar story:
My knees don’t agree with hills and stairs. I’ve taken a tumble down hills in both hemispheres—once in San Francisco and once in Wellington, New Zealand. I also took a nice bloody fall down a flight of stairs after the first time I read at Ode, an act I’d rather not repeat this time.

Describe your perfect bachelorette party.
I think it would involve karaoke and crab dip. My idea of “fun” is basically shaped by the Rehoboth Beach boardwalk, regardless of the significance of the celebration.

What’s the best thing you’ve heard a child say?
The misunderstandings stick with me. Someone close to me refused to be a ring bearer in a wedding when he was a little kid, because he thought he was being asked to be some kind of circus animal—a “ring bear.” 

Is there a photo of something that inspires you? 


What’s on your bucket list?
Does dismantling institutional biases and systemic inequality count? That’s going to take more buckets than just mine though.

Where is the best place to eat in Baltimore, and what do you order?
I’d recommend an entire eating tour, but if you’re going to go to one place, stop in at Lexington Market for crab cakes and oysters. While you’re there, you can pick up some Berger cookies, which are basically big lumps of fudge with something cookie-like underneath.

What was the last revision you made on a poem?
An editor saved me from unintentionally but egregiously ripping off Dylan Thomas in the final line of a recent poem. Once it was pointed out, it was so obvious, but it felt like it had just come to me! It’s fixed now, so I won’t tell you where to look for it. Too embarrassing.

Favorite name of something found in nature:
I like the monosyllabic ones, like bract and rill. Though every poet loves petrichor. And you can’t go wrong with Chihuahua, though I don’t think they’re found in nature very often.


Artist Interview

Sadie Dupuis

April 7, 2016

                                                                Photo cred: Shawn Brackbill

Sadie Dupuis: eye-catching, ear-catching, soundsmith, and wordsmith. Musician, teacher, poet, with a little mathmetician thrown in there, she is one of those women you see and wonder: how does she do it?  Well, she does it with aplomb, and with purple lipstick. She does it by dismembering moons to get to bulls to get to the horn. She, in her words, “…wade(s) around in different wets” to get to a place both unrecognizable and familiar: oh, the heart. Sadie Dupuis will be reading, along with poet Dora Malech, at Ode on Friday, April 8th, from 6-8pm. Enjoy a reading and a SmuttLabs Brewery sour beer tasting. Happy Poetry Month!

Best line from a song or poem about Spring:
Gonna defer to Audre Lorde on this one (as with most things): "We have no passions left to love the spring / Who had suffered autumn as we did, alone"   

Are you on Team Simile or Team Metaphor? Give us one that would win you a championship. 
I do have a poem about how icky metaphors are but any time I'm in a text message battle my greatest strength is whipping up an elaborate metaphorical scenario to win the argument. Mostly relating to Wes Craven movies. 

What inspires you?
Bagels. Seltzer, ft. bitters or espresso.

If you were a shade of lipstick, what color would you be, and what would its name be? 
Lately I've felt well represented by Thirteen, a teal liquid-to-matte made by Pretty Zombie (all vegan cosmetics, wacky colors). Not only because I like teal but because I generally align with adolescence and unluckiness.

Where do you go to get lost?
Online shopping. For wigs and nail stickers.

Who finds you?
My credit card company when I max out my account with online shopping. 

What would you want your last words to be?
"I can't believe I ate the whole thing."

The poem “Meditation at Lagunitas” (by Robert Hass) ends with the line, “saying blackberry, blackberry, blackberry.” On what one word would you meditate?
Hollandaise, hollandaise, hollandaise.

What was the last revision you made on a poem?
Turned "filthy" into "filthyyy," to great effect.

Artist Interview

Jocie Adams of ARC IRIS

December 9, 2015

Imagine you are deep in the thicket of an enchanted forest. You happen upon a clearing wherefrom a majestic, golden-winged goddess with the vocal equivalent of windchimes and sunlight appears. Meet Jocie Adams, the frontwoman for Arc Iris, a band that infuses sophisticated orchestral sounds with a raw grit and sweet whimsy. We spent an afternoon with Jocie, Ray, Zach and, yes, a polar bear (one very old, inherited heirloom that deserved a little glory). Experience the magic of Arc Iris tonight, Friday 11th, from 6-8pm, at Ode. Meet Jocie: bear queen and empress of sound.

How was Arc Iris—the name, the band, the sound—born?
Arc Iris means rainbow.  Rainbows are beautiful not only because they are pretty, but because they represent the wiping away of the old and step into the new.  Sometimes the rain needs to fall, the ground needs to get muddy and sticky, and the roads need to turn into swimming pools in order to see what floats. Arc Iris floats.

Where do you feel most at home?
I feel most at home in my house in Providence. I live in a small city, but my house feels more like a cabin.  I get the feeling of quiet and aloneness and the perk of having friends and family around to give me a hug when I need one.

If you owned a bar on mars, where would it be, who would be there, and what musical guest would be performing?
It would be along the Valles Marineris (a huge canyon on mars that is 3000 kilometers long -- http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/image_feature_83.html).  Who doesn't want a good view.  It's also more likely that water might resurface there, so that's a major plus.  The musical guest would probably have to be a David Bowie / Joni Mitchell duo show where their band would have to include Rick Wakeman on keys, Jon Anderson on background vocals, hand claps and bells, Sister Rosetta Tharpe on background vocals and guitar, a monkey on vibraphone, Steve Gadd on drums, and James Jamerson on bass.

What makes you laugh?
It's pretty easy to make me laugh... so I'd say it depends on the day but it could as simple as a silly face or an incongruity that is not at all funny to anyone else.

Favorite memory of snow?
I think excessive driving in snow has erased every positive memory of snow that I have ever had, though I am sure I loved it when I was little.  I like jumping in puddles when we have summer rains!  I highly suggest it.

Best thing to do in Providence in the morning? Best thing to do at night?
The best thing to do both in the morning and in the night is to EAT! Providence has excellent restaurants.  My old bandmates also spearheaded and nurtured the growth of one of my favorite venues, the Columbus Theatre. A morning walk in the spring around town is also highly recommended.  Providence is magical in the spring.

If you were a piece of clothing, what color/fabric/pattern would it be?
If I were a piece of clothing I would probably be somebodies old favorite t-shirt that they have worn a million times. The one that has holes everywhere but you still wear it even though you can't really justify it.

What's your favorite line from any song?
Whoa that is too difficult. I love lyrics. 
I defer to Zach who answers - Harry Nilsson, I'd Rather Be Dead: "I'd rather be dead than wet my bed".

If you could wake to any sound, what sound would that be?
Stereo cat purr - that's when there is a car on either side of your head and they are both purring.  There have been studies that the sound of a cat purring has many positive impacts on human health.

Pablo Neruda once wrote an ode to socks. To what surprising/unexpected thing would you compose an ode?
I guess I would write an ode to that polar bear rug! I would like imagine what he did in his past life. I would have to at least imagine that it was long, fulfilling and full of great meals.

[Chattman Photography]