Home Tour: A Traditional Home Filled with Antique Treasures

good earth home
You know you are in for a visual treat looking at this picture, right?
This is entrance of a Good Home earth. So, just let your imagination run wild for what to expect inside. Real wild..you will not be disappointed.
For the past three weeks, we have been going around town looking for wooden pillars for the pooja room for our home. The pooja area is not a separate room, but stands in the center of the house. So to make it a separate entity, we designed it as a central unit supported by four pillars with rafters running on the top. One challenging aspect was no support for pillars (double ceiling area) and no adjacent walls. And, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to secure them with screws to the ground.
Thoons, thinnai, verandah, uthram(rafters), oonjal, the big wooden kadhavu (door), niche for lighting lamps, mitham, ammi, kalloral, and vengalam for cooking  are all close to my heart. A few elements remain in both grandparents’ homes now, and I’m trying to incorportae whatever little I can in our new home.

I discovered Jyothika Baleri’s awesome work when looking for pillars, and loved how she has incorporated these traditional elements in each of her projects. Needless to say, I’ve spent hours just drooling over her work in the past fortnight. Just can’t get enough, and I bet you are going to feel the same way if you like traditional South Indian homes. In this post, I take you through the tour of a Good Earth home in Bangalore whose interiors are done by Jyothika.
solid wood furniture in living
1. Please describe the project and its owners in brief.
The owner is an avid collector of antique furniture. He had a large collection of antique furniture and other old pieces like pillars/pelmets/capitals etc from his various trips all over India. His only brief was to accommodate his entire collection in this house. We had to build the woodwork such as the wardrobes and kitchen to go with his collection of antiques.
wooden treasure chest
A custom made bed for the master bed room. The presence of solid wood is strongly felt in every room. No element in the house seems out of place.
ethnic room
2. What are the unique features of the interiors of the home: rubble masonry, pillars?
The home is a typical good earth home. As the name suggests,very earthy,extensive use of exposed masonry such as wirecut brick and stone masonry. The wooden pillars used outside the home in the porch area was to recreate the Tinnai – Sitout effect. The interiors are a reflection of the exterior.Random rubble masonry/ skylight. /brick walls /Jaisalmer marble floor. All these factors keep with the earthy feel of the entire good earth community.
rubble masonry
3. The pillars at the entrance of the pooja room are exquisite. What are they made from and where are they sourced from?
 The niche seen was provided as a place for a refrigerator by the builder. On going through the many antique pieces the Owner ,Mr.Jaikumar had in his collection,the pillars and carved pelmets caught my attention.The pillars are from Karaikudi, made of teak wood.The base was stone and capitals again in jackwood. In keeping with old traditional colours we painted it  blue and salmon pink.The carved pieces were door frames of 2 different doors that i pieced together to connect the 2 pillars.A total of 6 different pieces were used to form the top connector doorway for the pooja.
pillars at the entrance of pooja room
4. A few words about the furniture – the interesting bench cum trunk in the dining table, the colonial styled furniture in the living room. Are these all made? 
These pieces were all bought at various locations by Mr.Jaikumar. The bench idea has been around for a while. But this trunk worked beautifully with the cane and glass tile inlaid table.So we put them together.The living area has a mixed seating from an antique cane and teak recliner to the more modern teak chaise. A rajasthani leather chest was added to break the monotony of all the teak furniture.The chest was a part of his collection.
dining trunk table
dining table
5. The thought behind the distress finish for the kitchen.
The Jaikumars are very fond of anything rustic and distressed. The yellow Jaisalmer floor was already in place so the color we chose had to complement the floor. After making a few colored samples,the Green distress matched the floor beautifully.So we went with this color. To keep the kitchen looking airy and open no overhead cabinets were made.Only a teak wood shelf to keep bottles was made. The chimney outlet pipe was covered with a teak finish pelmet with tile inlay. An old hutch Sheesham cabinet  was reworked with cane doors and distressed to match the kitchen cabinets.
distress kitchen
Notice the vengalam on the top? Isn’t that brilliant to display instead of stashing away in the loft.
6. Exposed brick in the study area renders a rustic finish. Any words of advice?
The study in this home was a very interesting corner. In keeping with the rustic look two old window panels were erected on either sides to create a demarcation between the stairs and the study. The two panels were tied together with a slice of teakwood log. The remaining log was used as is with its unfinished edges to create the study table and book shelves.
Exposed wire-cut brick masonry adds  character and charm to any room. The shade variation in the brick make it very rustic and easily lift any space with no effort. Always paint exposed brick surfaces with a clear acrylic coat or a varnish to preserve the brick and prevent small insects from burrowing into the small pores of the brick.
brick study
7. What is the flooring?
Flooring used here was Jaisalmer marble in the living /dining and kitchen areas. All the bedrooms had Tanjore blue kudappa stone. The study has a wooden floor to keep with the wooden stair case as it is an extension of the stair area.
8. Your words of advice for anyone who wants to give a ethnic look like this to their home?  How do they get in touch with you?
Ethnic look for a home is fairly easy to achieve.
earthy colors
  1. Considering most apartments come with a pre-existing vitrified floor,ethnic tile inserts lift the plain floor instantly at a very reasonable cost.
  2. Antique / refurbished /reconstructed chests work very well to create an ethnic look.
  3. Avoid using solid colored laminate furniture in an ethnic setting.If budget permits stick to solid wood or veneered wardrobes and other furniture.If tight on budget use dark colored wood grain laminates to mimic teak or rosewood furniture.
  4. If the space allows for use of pillars, 2 pillars are a must do for an ethnic set up.If not then cut pillars or half pillars can be mounted on any wall to form an accent wall.
  5. A swing is always welcome and completes an ethnic set up.
  6. Earthy colors like mustards, beiges, and rust can be painted on accent walls to add to the oomph factor of any room.
rich wooden cabinets
Thanks Jyothika for taking us through this home and your words of wisdom. The Kanakapura project is one of my favorites and couldn’t take my eyes off for it for weeks. The before-after transformation is breathtaking. Stay tuned for another breathtaking tour on Monday.
You can reach Jyothika at
Destination Designs,
A 109,Kasturi Dhama Apartments,9th cross,8th main,Malleswaram,Bangalore-55
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