Christmas is right here. The time when people decorate their places with stars and lights, and kids expectantly wait for the Santa to come with gifts. There will be carols and crackers adding beauty, colour and loudness to the season.
This is the Christmas we are familiar with. Every year, when December begins, we take the old decors kept in the store, clean them, and use them mechanically. But, not all. Some people believe in celebrating the season with a twist. Here are a few.
The students’ union members of St Teresa’s College decided to be traditional for the Christmas. Their friends were awestruck to see them clad in the traditional chattayum mundum with sunglasses, for Christmas celebration.
Toolika, chair person of St Teresa’s College, says, “It was a sudden thought. It was a big hit when we adopted the Premam style for Onam celebration. While thinking about Christmas programmes, chattayum mundum struck our minds. We had ample support from the management and we went ahead.”
Some girls rented the costumes while others borrowed them from their grandmothers. “However, kunuku (ear ring) had to be taken for rent by all. Some students who knew draping of chattayum mundum helped them wear it. “Throughout the day we had been hovering around in this costume. Everybody liked it. We even danced in this costume,” giggles Toolika.
The boys of St Joseph’s College, Devagiri, Kozhikode, thought of taking Christmas as an opportunity to show their love and care for their sisters. It came as a surprise for the girls when boys brought a sanitary napkin vending machine.
“Girls are usually reluctant to talk about this to boys although we face difficulty to get napkins many times. So, when they presented this machine under the campaign 'Snehapoorvam Sahodarikku’, understanding our situation, we were surprised. We felt extremely happy that union members collected money from all boys and installed the machine,” says Keerthana, a student.
Not just students, others too think unique. The Christmas tree made of books brought out by H&C Publishers, Kochi, Green X’mas at Casino Hotel, and rustic-chick-quirky Christmas created by designer Sreejith Jeevan and his wife Anoodha are some examples.
Sreejith, who adorned his home with handcrafted decors, says, “This year we decided to decorate the house a bit differently. The idea was to ask ourselves ‘what would be different about Christmas coming to our house?’ So the idea was to use objects from our own house or materials that we collected over time to create decor that would suit the rustic-chic-quirky decor that we otherwise have in our house.
So we made fabric and paper decorations for the Christmas tree, used many upcycled bottles with carved wooden details to create advent candles, and painted a large canvas and added paper trees to show that Christmas was in the neighbourhood.” Boards with handwritten quotes that spread the spirit of Christmas are also there.
“We have used handcarved wooden pieces as snowflakes, fabric motifs and prints to create quirky artworks of the Christmas trees, stockings. We went to local craftsmen hunting for baskets, mats, lamps that would bring in a very rustic look to the decor,” he adds.
The Casino Hotel in Willingdon Island, Kochi, has used the decors made by children of Raksha Special School, Mattanchery, to beautify the hotel. Spiral Christmas trees crafted from magazines, stars from old cartons, baubles from paper and Christmas wreaths with twisted newspaper and colored curls from plastic bottles are some of the special features.
“Through this effort we are able to provide an additional income to the children at the school and at the same time engage them in learning a new craft. Today, it has become a common feature to see most of the homes embellished with plastic and non-biodegradable materials. It is important that we realise that by doing so we are only adding to problems,” says George Joseph, General Manager, Casino Hotel, Kochi.
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