“I love the dialogue between design and people” – A Chatathon with Designer Titir Dey.
Welcome to our #HathiGirls series - Conversations with girls next door, living the creative life, being their wonderfully unique selves, everyday! We'll talk about life, design, art, movies, stars and all the things we can think about! We hope you like these stories from our #tribe.
There are people who feel like "sunshine" and then there are people who make you feel like sunshine. That's a difference I realised after meeting Titir! While Titir holds a senior position as Head of Design at one of the World's leading Workplace Interior Design firms - it is her charm and vibrant energy that can win over anyone she meets. She is unabashedly and unapologetically herself, making her the quintessential #HathiGirl.
We chatted with her to discover various facets that make "Titir" who she is and also discussed what design means to her. She also curated a list of her favourite Hathi products as a bonus - Check out Titir's curation here .
Here we go...
Imagine we’ve met as strangers at a party, how would you introduce yourself?
My name is Titir. I’m a Bong from Kolkata and yes, I’m every bit as crazy as what you’ve heard about us ! :D
Tell us something about yourself that, over the years, you’ve realised isn’t the most normal :)
Its’s a long list! I’ve been told talking in my sleep and talking to plants isn’t the most normal thing to do. But I’ve come to realise, my plants love my songs and my pep talks! And that the day isn’t enough for all that I have to say, so who says you can’t use the night :D
We believe you’re more than just your job title. So tell us, what are you passionate about?
I’m lucky that my job is my passion! Design in one of my biggest passions and I am lucky to be able to design for a living.
Apart from that…
I love to travel. Cliche as it may be. But for me its a booster dose for my brain…its like nourishment for my soul.
I love my plants. I travel a lot for work so my plant babies suffered a lot, but ever since the lockdown, I’ve been able to spend time with them. I think they were a bit shocked in the beginning but they seem to be enjoying my company!
I’m a Bong, so food is definitely one of my biggest passions!
I love stargazing…unfortunately I can’t see many in Mumbai but I make sure my holiday destinations always have clear skies!
What do you do to stay YOU in this world of homogeneity?
I follow my heart. I listen to everyone, but eventually I do what my heart tells me to :)
Looking back, what would you say were the moments or breakthroughs that have defined your life journey so far?
I think for me there weren’t any big moments or revelations as such. Art, music, literature etc. were a big part of my life at home as I was growing up and another big influence was my school. Studying Architecture, I felt helped me define my passion and give it a direction.
What’s the one thing about Design that you feel is most important to you?
With the environment at home, growing up in Kolkata as well as the philosophy of our school, I think there has been a very strong emphasis on being human-centric. The fact that design has such a huge impact on people and their lives and the relationship is so dynamic, I think that is something that I love the most. The dialogue between design and people.
Who or what inspires your personal style?
I think anything that I connect with, that makes me feel is a reflection of who I am. I must say though that two of my closest friends have had a huge impact on my personal style! I suppose that’s what friends are!
When and where are you most productive and creative? How do you get into the flow?
Definitely in the studio with my team around! I’m big on co-creation. Ideating and brainstorming together is what gets me going!
What’s your cosiest place/thing?
My corner with my plants, right now I have a little bit of a view of the hills, but that’s going to go away soon with a building that’s coming up! So I make the most of it while I can :)
What have you done to make home-office comfortable?
I keep changing things up as much as possible with playing with the corners and the set up of the room. Apart from setting things up for being comfortable ergonomically since so much of the day goes sitting in a space, I use softer elements like cushions, flowers, plants, task lights to make things more dynamic and I keep changing colour schemes as per the mood & weather. So it's never mundane or monotonous!
What is on your current work playlist and why?
Anne's song! I feel like I am in a faraway dreamy place vs the reality of being stuck at home!
What does home mean to you?
Tell us about the city where you live. What makes it feel like home?
I live in Mumbai. I love the energy and the vibe. Its chaos and yet there’s a warmth in its people and in the city. I love how it embraces you for who you are and lets you be. I think that’s why it feels like home.
Where would you take us if we come visiting to your home city?
I don’t think you’d be able to go back if we went exploring Kolkata together! I love the streets of Kolkata, there’s a surprise at every corner whether its eatery or a little book shop!
What do you think is a “new normal” for you?
I think this lockdown has been an opportunity to have a more future forward ethos, to see things with a new perspective. Possibilities and opportunities that were non-existent or barely conceived prior to the pandemic now offer an intriguing potential to shape the future. I think hope is the new normal, strangely!
What’s the 1st thing you notice when you go to someone’s house
What the 1st things you noticewhen you meet a new person
What are your pet peeves? In design or otherwise
Lack of thoughtfulness! I absolutely hate that! Particularly in design.
Rapid fire -
Prints or plains?
Favourit colour combo or colour palette for wearing?
Black / white / red OR light pink / white
Favourit colour combo or colour palette for home?
White / beige + fresh yellow sprinkled
Are you a butterfly, fish, flower or Bull?
Would like to be a butterfly, but end up being a bull
Click here for Titir's curation of her favourite Hathi products.
Illustrations by the brilliant Aishwarya Agarwal AKA @whyartthou