Monday, May 30, 2011

Cheese, Please

My idea of a great Saturday night is staying home with Jason, opening a bottle of nice red wine, and consuming a delicious array of imported cheeses, pates, crackers, bread, and cured meats. So it should come as no surprise that I have started collecting nice cheese platters to add ambiance to our special nights.

Acquisition #1: November 2010, Michael Aram Olive Branch Board

Acquisition #2: May 2011, Found at a vintage sale for $7

I was really excited when I found this glass domed display at a vintage sale this past weekend as I had been eyeing a similar version at Williams Sonoma. Since this domed display is so cute, I also plan to use it to show off cupcakes or other baked goods.

Friday, May 27, 2011

To Keep?

{Coach Shannon Calf Wedges in Espresso - $129.90 on sale}

 The Nordstrom Half-Yearly Sale started on Wednesday, and like a true shopaholic, I spent my lunch hour picking through the sale racks.  These Coach wedges were super cute, comfy, over 40% off and with limited shopping time, I made a snap decision to take them home with me.  After leaving the store, I started thinking that maybe these sandals don't add much to my shoe collection.  Below are a few pairs I already own that could be worn with the same outfits as my newest addition.  Do you think they fill a void in my closet? Or should they (sadly) be returned to Nordies for someone else to enjoy?

Thursday, May 26, 2011

The Selby Shoots: A.Spade + K.Spade's Home

she's quick & curious & playful & strong.

occasionally she dreams of italy.
she dreams of cheese shops, persnickety fiats,
& very fine leather goods.

she tucked her coral lipstick away
& floated back to the party.

kate spade
the selby

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Patriotic Backyard BBQ

How fun and festive would it be to lounge around all day on a summery outdoor sofa with bright colored pillows and patio-perfect decor?  I can't wait to indulge in some super savory appetizers, all-American hot dogs, and red, white, and blue desserts this weekend.  Let's all raise our patriotic themed cocktails in thanks and remembrance of those who have served this country!

CB2 red tray table
New York style hot dogs
Crate and Barrel charcoal grill
West Elm outdoor furniture and pillows
Bakerella's Patriotic Cake Pops
Crate and Barrel serveware
The Girl Who Ate Everything's Bloomin' Onion Bread

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

In Observance

I am always excited when Memorial Day weekend finally rolls around not only because the day promises beautiful weather, relaxing by the water and barbeques galore, but also because it happens to be the first paid holiday of the year for my office (whoo-hoo!).  In honor of this national day of memoriam, and a nod to the 'ole red, white and blue, I have put together what I think is the perfect outfit for the upcoming 3-day weekend.  

Monday, May 23, 2011

Salmon en Papillote

Salmon en Papillote is a fantastic weeknight dinner. It takes a maximum of 25 minutes, is healthy, and actually looks pretty fancy! En Papillote means 'in parchment' and cooks the food using steam.

1) A salmon fillet for each person you are feeding
2) A lemon or lime, sliced thinly
3) Olive Oil
4) Fresh dill (or dry dill or salmon seasoning)
5) Asparagus
6) Parchment Paper (foil may work too)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cut a piece of parchment paper about 1 foot long for each salmon fillet.
Fold parchment paper in half.
Place cut and washed asparagus on either half of the parchment.
Place salmon fillet on top of asparagus.

Drizzle salmon and asparagus with olive oil.
Sprinkle with dill (or choice of seasoning).
Place sliced lemon or lime over salmon fillet.

Fold the empty half of the parchment paper over the salmon.
Fold over edges of parchment paper to make a sealed package.
Place parchment packets on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven for about 20 to 22 minutes.

Voila! A gorgeous dinner that you didn't have to slave 3 hours in the kitchen to make!

Friday, May 20, 2011


I know she has a lot of haters out there, but I LOVE Olivia Palermo's sense of style. She is classy and elegant, yet knows how to incorporate just the right amount of trendiness and youth into her ensembles. I find that sometimes it's easier to be trendy than following your own sense of style. When I see pictures of her, it reminds me that it's okay to be a little plain and conservative sometimes!

{photo credit: The Vogue Diaries}

{photo credit: The Vogue Diaries}

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{photo credit: The Vogue Diaries}

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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty

I could not think of a better title. It is already a perfect fit.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art exhibit by the Costume Institute, Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, is all that you would expect of a celebration & tribute to the beloved Alexander McQueen. Andrew Bolton (curator), Harold Koda (supporting curator), Sam Gainsbury (creative director), & Joseph Bennett (production designer) put on an impeccable exhibition. The music, lighting, & set of each gallery builds upon one another to showcase each of McQueen’s pieces in just the way that you can imagine he would have wanted. A highlight of the exhibit is the renown hologram of Kate Moss dancing in an ethereal organza gown from McQueen’s 2006 Fall/Winter show. Walking through the rooms, you will find, I am sure, the period from which you first fell in love with this British fashion designer. For me, it was the Victorian Gothic show of 2002 Fall/Winter, with its billowing layers of black silk & lace.

For further information & a well-written walkthrough of the exhibit, go here.

“You’ve got to know the rules to break them. That’s what I’m here for, to demolish the rules but to keep the tradition.”

“I want to be the purveyor of a certain silhouette or a way of cutting, so that when I’m dead & gone people will know that the twenty-first century was starred by Alexander McQueen.”

the metropolitan museum of art
habitually chic
the empress of dress

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Inspiring Interiors

While I attempt to decorate my own house, why not look to the interior design geniuses of television and movies for guidance?  Some of the photos below are a result of my recent obsession with HGTV, and some of these photos are ones I've kept for literally years as an example of how I imagine my dream home would look like.  These amazingly stylish interiors are inspiring in so many ways, I hope I can take my favorite bits and pieces from each room to create my own dreamy, cozy, beautiful home one day.

{Calm, clean, and sophisticated bedroom}
episode 1 of Candice Tells All

{Oh-Joy! wallpaper, unique frame gallery, and metallic accents}

{modern and down-to-earth brown & blue palette}
Room & Board's Fall 2007 Catalog

{a chic and stylish bright and white open space}
Nate Berkus' sister's studio in Manhattan

{warm lighting, geometric patterns, and a soft muted color scheme
create a cozy, modern home}
Mia's apartment in Cashmere Mafia

{sophisticated classic and modern... and who doesn't love the his & hers closet?!}
Carrie & Big's home in Sex and the City 2

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tasty Thai

 {Tom Yum Gai - hot and sour chicken soup}

I love Thai food.  It is always at the top of my list of suggestions when ordering takeout, but until this weekend I have never attempted to cook it myself.  I was in the mood to try some new recipes, so after a quick Google search, I decided on these recipes for Tom Yum Gai and Pad See Ew, my two favorite Thai dishes.  All the ingredients were easily found at my local 99 Ranch, and I only made a few substitutions (soup: fresh oyster mushrooms in place of button and canned straw mushrooms, noodles: Chinese broccoli in place of normal broccoli and omitted carrots).  The soup turned out amazing and tasted just like the versions I've tried at Thai restaurants, except with an added kick from the serrano chilies.  The noodles were also yummy but the sauce was a tad light (as you can see) for my liking.  Next time, I'll try using dark soy sauce as directed in this recipe.  Overall it was quite a success, these dishes will definitely be added into my regular rotation.

 {Beef Pad See Ew - Thai rice noodles}

 {enjoy with Thai iced tea}

Monday, May 16, 2011

Spice It Up

{Zara silk leopard top, Gap cardigan, Rebecca Taylor pearl necklace, 3.1 Philip Lim bag, Manolo Blahnik black patent pumps}

This leopard print Zara top is one of my favorites because it's so versatile. I can wear it to work, out to dinner, tucked in or out. Since I work in an office, I am constantly looking for ways to spice up otherwise-potentially-boring outfits. In this instance, the bright pink cardigan and statement pearl necklace did the trick just perfectly!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Currently Lovin'

{Chloe perfume and body cream}

{Essie and Deborah Lippmann nail polish}
current faves: Essie's Chubby Cheeks and DL's Kiss From a Rose

{silk blouses}
all from Ann Taylor

{soft, wispy scarves}

{David Yurman watch}
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