Luxemi Founder Swathi Narra Shares Her Favorite Things

When strangers ask Narra where she got something stylish, the answer invariably goes back to India.

Photography: (headphones, bag) courtesy of vendors; (all others) Anna Knott

Swathi Narra can’t tell you how many times she’s been stopped by strangers wanting to know where she got this piece of jewelry or that article of clothing. Invariably, the source was a store or market in India.

So in 2011, Narra, 32, and her business partner, Swapna Chandamuri, decided to create a web retailer (Luxemi.com) to curate and sell modern Indian attire and accessories. The site’s selection, ranging from elegant bangles ($78 for a pair) to a zippy brocade calf-length dress ($398), might surprise shoppers. “A lot of people think that clothing from India is very Bollywood, very blingy,” she says. “But there’s a lot of subtlety and craftsmanship coming out of India, and many fashion-forward designers who don’t get a lot of play in the U.S.”

The Wicker Park condo that Narra shares with her fiancé, Jay Miller, a physician, is an eclectic mix of East meets West. She honed this style growing up in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, traveling frequently to India with her family. Look below to see how she brings it all together.

 

10 Things She Loves

 

HEBRU BRANTLEY PAINTING

HEBRU BRANTLEY PAINTING (Brantley’s work is available by contacting Pia@hebrubrantley.com)
“What he does is pure magic; I feel lucky to have his work in our home.”

 

 

HORN VASE

HORN VASE ($48, Jayson Home, 1885 N. Clybourn Ave.)
“It’s sculptural, interesting, and affordable.”

 

 

SILK CAFTAN

SILK CAFTAN
“I wear caftans all the time—they are so effortlessly glamorous.”

 

 

‘GITA FOR EVERYDAY LIVING’

GITA FOR EVERYDAY LIVING ($6, amazon.com)
“I wouldn’t call myself a religious person, but my grandmother got me this book when I told her I wanted to learn more about Hinduism.”

 

 

3.1 PHILLIP LIM BAG

3.1 PHILLIP LIM BAG ($895, Barneys New York, 15 E. Oak St.)
“The man knows exactly what I want all the time.”

 

 

INDIAN GOLD AND DIAMOND BRACELET

INDIAN GOLD AND DIAMOND BRACELET
“Its beauty speaks for itself, but what makes it special is that my dad gave it to me.”

 

 

FRENDS HEADPHONES

FRENDS HEADPHONES ($200, Nordstrom, 55 E. Grand Ave.)
“I adore anything gold and white.”

 

 

ARMANI LUMINOUS SILK FOUNDATION

ARMANI LUMINOUS SILK FOUNDATION ($60, Bloomingdale’s, 900 N. Michigan Ave.)
“Finding colors that work with my skin tone is difficult, so this is a favorite in my beauty arsenal.”

 

 

REVERSIBLE BLACK ONYX AND TURQUOISE EARRINGS

REVERSIBLE BLACK ONYX AND TURQUOISE EARRINGS ($258, luxemi.com)
“I love statement earrings.”

 

 

CUSTOM-MADE DAY BED

CUSTOM-MADE DAY BED
“You can find beds like this in rural India. I love the relaxed vibe it instantly gives a room.”

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