From acing the art of sawing and welding to sourcing wood for her designs, 25-year-old Saba Kapoor is a mean furniture designer behind her petite frame. The Parsons School of Design graduate is now recasting straight line furniture at her family-owned enterprise, Nivasa, to launch her own label, Nivasa Contemporary. When her projects don’t keep her busy, she is travelling the world for design inspiration. By Shikha Pushpan
T+L: What were your favourite hideouts in NYC?
Saba Kapoor: There is no place like New York City! It is definitely the food capital of the world. Jaiya Thai is not really a fancy restaurant but it serves the best Thai food. I am absolutely in love with their tom yum soup and chicken in Thai basil sauce. There is another restaurant called, Ippudo-this is what ramen dreams are made of. And to add to the ramen, their pork buns are just delicious!
T+L: Who or what do you look up to for inspiration?
Saba Kapoor: The works of Mark Rothko has had a great influence on my designs. He kept it simple but significant. The depth and beauty in his artwork transports one to another world altogether. I also looked up to Zaha Hadid since a very young age. I would have absolutely loved to collaborate with her or even just shadow her and get a peek into her absolutely genius creative mind.
T+L: What interests you, besides designing furniture?
Saba Kapoor: I absolutely love dancing, and have trained in ballet, jazz, salsa, and of course my favourite Bollywood. I actually used to teach Bollywood dance during my time in New York. In fact, it’s a passion shared by my entire family. We’ve tested the strength of our home furniture by busting a few moves on top of the tables. I am also a bigtime wildlife lover and have travelled to wildlife parks across the world—Bandavgarh National Park to Masai Mara National Reserve in Kenya.
T+L: One thing that no one knows about you.
Saba Kapoor: I love Sufi music and in my own head I am a great singer, my friends disagree though. Also, I have a thing for Fun Flips, Maggi, strawberries, and lime cider, and can never say no to them.
T+L: A delectable Sunday Brunch in Delhi be at?
Saba Kapoor: Some of my favourite restaurants are Olives, Big Chill, China Fare, TKs, Leo’s, Hong Kong Club, Spice Root, Dakshin, Artusi, Eest and Townhall. Nobody does Sunday brunch like Olive but if I’m looking for a lazy Sunday brunch then definitely Cafe Dori!
T+L: How far have you travelled? And what tops your travel bucket list right now?
Saba Kapoor: I have travelled to Iceland, France, Hungary, Italy, Spain, Scotland, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Sweden, Norway, Turkey, Kenya, South Africa, Thailand, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore to name a few and I have lived in London, Bath, Bristol, Rotterdam, New York and of course New Delhi. I so want to visit Antarctica, The Amazon Basin, Mexico, Brazil, Australia, and New Zealand. I also want to visit Japan during the peak cherry blossom season. Also, I can’t wait to visit the Sunderbans, Kerala and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
T+L: Where are you traveling to next and what do you look forward to do there?
Saba Kapoor: We’re planning to visit Italy over the summer. We land in Milan and will spend a couple of days there absorbing the architecture. We then drive down to Venice. I am very excited about visiting the glass factories there. From Venice we drive down to Tuscany, where I am looking forward to visit vineyards and spend time in countryside. We then head to Florence, and end our trip in Rome, with a visit to the Vatican City.