Archive for February, 2013

The Cat Came Back

  • 28th February 2013

….It just wouldn’t stay away!


Since the Givenchy ‘cat ear cap,’ crawled down the runway the trend has literally had 9 lives with ears re-imagined on headbands, leather caps and knitted skull caps popping up everywhere from fashion week in Milan to the street scene in New York.


We’ll spotlight the trend—Pinpoint the best looks to buy—Show how to pair  




Givenchy Cat Cap

Givenchy Runway




Fashion Week in Milan Cat Cap

Fashion Week in Milan—Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Australia

Beyonce Cat Ears


Cat Ears outside Chanel

Outside Chanel Show—Photo Courtesy of Eclectic






Great Finds Ear-Marked

Felix Eugenia Kim

Felix,, $145.00



Maison Michel Paris

Maison Michel Paris,, £200.00


Cat Ears Black Hat

Cat Ears Black Hat,, $25.50



 Our Favorite Pairing:


Banana Republic Monogram High Waisted Skirt


Mixing the cat-ears with a bold pattern and not a mono-chromatic top make a chic vs. costumey statement.  


Felix,, $145.00

Honoring Houndstooth Coat,, $72.00

Monogram High Waisted Skirt,, $98.00





Flush with Florals

  • 27th February 2013

Spring flowers might be just on the precipice of peeking out of the ground, but there are bouquets a-plenty on the minds of designers who’ve placed petals on everything from jeans to  pot holders to baby shoes.  Even as winter persists in many parts of the world there are sure to be abundant blooms.


Chanel Floral Bodice

Chanel Floral Bodice

Photo Courtesy of Vogue Italie

Photo Courtesy of Vogue Italie



Use these fresh florals below as inspiration to plan a spring-time garden party!!!



Dolce & Gabbana Floral Purse



1.) Cut Flowers Amaryllis,, $260.00

2.) Alice + Olivia Floral Skinny Jeans,, $198.00

3.) Dolce & Gabbana Miss Sicily Embroidered Straw Handbag,, € 2,250.00


Hybrid Insalatiera Salad Bowl,


4.) Hybrid Insalatiera Salad Bowl,

5.) Toms Daisy Print Slip-On, Youth,, $38.00

6.) Moncler Giasone,, $875.00


Set of Five Bella Spring Candle Rings,


7.) Miu Miu Necklace with Flower Clasp,, $695.00

8.) Pantalon Valandro,, € 345.00

9.) Set of Five Bella Spring Candle Rings,, $69.00



Girls Bermuda Short in Tea Rose



10.) Wedgwood Floral Majolica bowl with Strawberries,, price upon request

11.) Slippers Candy Pink, Agnes B. Kids,, €52.68

12.) Girls Bermuda Short in Tea Rose,, $49.50


 Wallpaper Floral Print Dress,


13.) Wallpaper Floral Print Dress,, $375.00

14.) Boy’s Liberty Tie in June’s Meadow Floral,, $58.00

15.) Dolce & Gabbana Flower Dress,, £415.00


Florigraphie, pot mat,


Florigraphie, pot mat,



Embellished Leather Thong Sandal,


16.) Embellished Leather Thong Sandal,, $39.50

17.)  Blossom Hook Rack,, $19.95



Alberto Pinto Belles Saison & Compagnie Des Indes Dinner Plate
Alberto Pinto Belles Saison & Compagnie Des Indes Dinner Plate



Alberto Pinto Belles Saison & Compagnie Des Indes Dinner Plate,, $360.00




Cadeaux Parfait—Prix Parfait

  • 26th February 2013

Great gifts under $50 are hard to find.

We are as fond of scented candles, aromatic soaps and good wine as anyone, but with just a tad more effort you can come up with something that will by-pass the random kitchen/hallway storage drawer and actually get used and loved.  And we have not gone above $50 (minus tax and shipping)

Cobalt Woven Paper Bowl Serena & Lilly


Cobalt Woven Paper Bowl,, $38.99



These are a few of our favorite ideas that work for anyone:  your friend’s birthday you suddenly remembered; end-of-year teacher ‘thank Us'; sudden invite to a colleague’s for brunch; secretary house-warming….whatever the occasion, stock up on a few of these now and you will be ready and thankful later.



GrandinRoad Lavendar Stack and RSH Hurricane


Lavendar Stack,, $29.00

Small Hurricane,, $15.00



Handmade Jaipur Coasters Wisteria, Harvest Nut Tray DeanDeluca


Handmade Jaipur Coasters,, $16.80

Harvest Nut Tray,, $24.00



Seventh Heaven Ring Sundance Catalog



Seventh Heaven Ring,, $48.00


All Hours Winking Georgie Kate Spade




All Hours Winking Georgie,, $49.00

(We suggest putting a few international coins from one of your favorite last trips inside just as a fun surprise!)


Gorjana Parker Leather Wrap Bracelet



Gorjana Parker Leather Wrap Bracelet,, $49.00



Embroidered Suzani Table Runner GrandinRoad

Embroidered Suzani Table Runner,, $39.00


Bone Inlay Jewelry Box Serena & Lilly, Filigree Collar Necklace Forever21


Filigree Collar Necklace,, $8.80

Bone Inlay Jewelry Box,, $24.99



Iris Placemat The Southern Home
Dutch Tulip Placemat The Southern Home



Iris Placemat (set of 4) or Dutch Tulip Placemat (set of 4),, $42.00


Threshold Flour Sack Towels Target



Threshold Flour Sack Cake Towel Set of 6,, $20.00


Indian Ragamala Plate Met Museum Store


Favorite decoratively wrapped chocolates in…

Indian Ragamala Plate,, $20.00



Mystic Tie-Back Bib Necklace



Mystic Tie-back Bib Necklace,, $48.00



Renaissance Glassware Horchow



Renaissance Glassware,, $26.90


English Toffee Crate Olive and Cocoa


English Toffee Crate,, $48.00


Gold Bangle Set Jcrew


Gold Bangle Set,, $39.50

Yellow Ceramic Muffin Pan Cost Plus


Yellow Ceramic Muffin Pan,, $14.99

Hodgson Mill Whole Wheat Wild Blueberry Muffin Mix,, $15.51



Ethnic Lace Applique Necklace Zara


Ethnic Lace Appliqué,, $29.90



Menagerie Juice Glasses Anthropologie



Menagerie Juice Glass,, $12.00

Norpro Orange Juicer,, $9.07


Coil Rope Bowl Ylang Home


A few beautiful green apples in…

Coil Rope Bowl,, $48.00



Parisien Shoppers Tote Forever 21, Eiffel Tower Round Tray Target


Eiffel Tower Round Tray,, $9.99

Champagne Cork Cookies by Fossier,, $9.99

Parisien Shopper’s Tote,, $1.80



Brown Silhouette Pencil Holder Robin King Designs


Brown Silhouette Pencil Holder,, $30.00

Elegant Pencils with Red French Lettering Set of 4,, $3.00


Vintage Hobnail Candydish One Kings Lane



Lindor Truffles (always a favorite) in…

Vintage Hobnail Candydish,, $45.00


Modern Metallics

  • 25th February 2013

In homage to two of the most lovely dresses to glide down the red carpet at the 2013 Oscars…



Naomi Watts Oscar 2013

Halle Berry Oscar 2013




We visit some of this season’s most inspired modern metallics.  From shoes to clutches to planters, the sparklers below are winners in every category.


Maison Margiela Metallic Jacket, Michael Kors Soutache Lace Dress



1.) Maison Martin Margiela Metallic Front Jacket,, $1590.00

2.) Phalaenopsis Orchid,, $8.95

3.) Michael Kors Soutache Lace Dress,, £2,499.00


Elizabeth and James Cree Silver Metallic Sandals

4.) Pamela Love Turquoise and Bronze Spike Earrings,, $345.00

5.) Pleated Metallic Maxi Skirt,, $22.80

6.) Elizabeth and James Cree Silver Metallic Sandals,, $250.00

7.) Clare Vivier Textured Metallic Flat Clutch,, $143.00


R13 Skinny in Silver, Jimmy Choo Pure Gold Leather Peep Toe Wedges



8.) Jimmy Choo Pure Gold Mirror Leather Peep Toe Wedges,, $650.00

9.) Fazilet Leather Bracelet,, $100.00

10.) Metallic Gold Drip Dish,, $175.00

11.) R13 Skinny in Silver,, $345.00

12.) Premium Metallic Origami Skirt,, $80.00


Diane Von Furstenberg Juliette Metallic Leather Platform Sandals


13.) Faith Connexion Strapless Metallic Brocade Dress,, $360.00

14.) Haute Hippie Sequined Jacket,, $747.50

15.) Metallic Crackle Herb Pot,, $14.00

16.) Diane Von Furstenberg Juliette Metallic Leather Platform Sandals,, (pre-order) $298.00

17.) Saint Laurent Paloma Flat Sandal,, $935.00


Joseph Clare Metallic Stretch Leather Pencil Skirt


18.) Joseph Clare Metallic Stretch Leather Pencil Skirt,, $270.00

19.)  Square Toe Ballerina,, $90.00

20.) High Heel Sandal with Ankle Strap,, $79.90

21.) Stella McCartney Metallic Linen Fold-Over Clutch,, $1120.00 (Pre-order)


Lola Cruz Mesh Sandal



22.) Reed Krakoff Metallic Oxford Pumps,, $604.00

23.) Haute Hippie Metallic Detail Leather Mini,, $304.00

24.) Lola Cruz Mesh Sandal,, $225.00

25.) Naveena Hand-Pleated Maxi Skirt,, $239.00


Urchin Vase Apartment 48


26.) Stella McCartney Jacquard Woven Trousers,, $504.00

27.) Sheri Bodell Metal Mesh Maxi Dress,, $228.20

28.) Ted Muehling Candle Holder available at select locations (photo courtesy of Elle Décor)

29.) Urchin Vase,, $62.00



Willow Metal Spine Trim Skirt

30.) Willow Metal Spine Trim Skirt,, $348.00

31.) Tods available at select Tods locations

32.) Love Suede Pillow,, $185.00


Pre-Order Please

  • 24th February 2013

Debuting this March, Aerin Lauder introduces her new footwear collection which is exactly as expected—delicate, feminine and classically elegant.  Here are our three top picks:


Corsica Aerin Lauder
Coco Bay Aerin Lauder
Pedros Aerin Lauder


Corsica,, $298.00

Cocobay,, $278.00

Pedros,, $198.00


Aerin Lauder

Aerin Lauder, Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Australia


Pâques Preview…

  • 24th February 2013

If the Easter Hare hops into your home every spring—have her bypass the garish cartoon chick decorations and bring you some garden-themed, bucolic, simpler décor to display.  Here are a few favorites, #1 being the felt baskets below which have been beloved by kids the past 3 years.  (Every year Cost Plus World Market offers a slight variation on these baskets).



Felt Easter Basket Cost Plus World Market
Felt Watering Can Cost Plus World Market




Large Felt Rabbit Picket Fence Container,, $7.99

Felt Watering Can, set of three,, $20.97


Easter Baskets Ready for Children to Fill

Easter Baskets Ready for Children to Fill

Kids Counting Their Eggs

Kids Counting Their Eggs



Bunny Garland Oriental Trading Company




Plush Chocolate Easter Bunny Garland,, $10.00


Villeroy & Boch Egg
Villeroy & Boch Egg






Spring Eggs,, $9.95



Pottery Barn Chair Backing Bunnies


Easter Chairbacker,, $19.00


Pink Bunny Napkin Rings
White Bunny Napkin Rings



Pink & White Bunny Ear Napkin Rings,, 6 for $17.99



Botanical Egg Runner William Sonoma




Egg Botanical Print Runner,, $59.95


Bunny Pillow



Easter Decoration Pillow,, $66.65

A Small (but Beautiful) World

  • 23rd February 2013

As glamorous adults from Hollywood to Bollywood don their Sunday best to attend Oscar-viewing parties, we take a moment to survey the high-drama clothing that is also available for even the littlest ones in the family.  These are just a few of our many many favorites which we will unfurl over the coming weeks…..


Cute Kids Clothes

Royal Blue Gingham Print Party Dress,, $275.00

Animal Print Sandal,, $35.90

Girls Selima Optique for Crewcuts Heart Sunglasses,, $55.00


Cutest Kids Clothes


Little Lilly Shift Dress by Lilly Pulitzer,, $48.00

Studded Leather Cowboy Ankle Boots,, $65.90


Cutest Kids Clothes



Landscape Dress Beige, Agnes B. Kids,, €48.08

Girls Minnetoka Tramper Boots,, $39.50



Oscar De La Renta Sophie Party Dress


Girls Sophie Party Dress,, $295.00

Il Gufo,


Bicycle Print Skirt Jcrew




Girls Colorblock Striped Sequin Tee,, $49.50

Girls Bicycle Print Chambray Skirt,, $55.00

Toms Resse Madras Plaid Slip-On,, $55.00


Pink Panther Playsuit Harrods



Mona Lisa Pink Panther Playsuit,, £125.00

Girls Classic Metallic Leather Ballet Flats,, $88.00


Oscar de la Renta Ikat Dress



Navy Ikat Cotton A-Line Dress,, $155.00

Leather Sandal with Stud Detailing,, $49.90



Loudest Bark T-Shirt Jcrew Girls



Girls Loudest Bark Tee,, $32.50

Christian Dior Square Print Skirt,, £159.00

Baggu for crewcuts heart and stripe bag,, $9.00

Girls G.H. Bass & Company Saddle Shoes,, $49.00


Milly Mini Jaquard Dress


Milly Minis Toddler and Little Girl’s Cece Combo Dress,, $225.00

Milly Minis Toddler’s & Little Girl’s Poppy Jacquard Shift Dress,, $175.00

Combinated Shoe with Ankle Strap,, $39.90



Zara Girls Crochet Dress



Crochet Dress,, $45.90

Braided Ankle Boot,, $49.94

Il Gufo,


Oscar de la Renta Mini Coats

Oscar de la Renta

Oscar de la Renta

Oscar de la Renta

In ‘Cuffs

  • 22nd February 2013

It’s not always the worst thing to be in ‘cuffs…..Hand-crafted, elaborately adorned cuffs have been worn by women and men throughout history across the globe from Incan to Egyptian civilizations.  Today the choices are limitless from smooth wood to studded leather and everything in between.



Best Cuffs


1.) Ann Taylor Spotted Calf Hair Cuff, available in stores only

2.) Wide “Shirt Cuff” Bracelet with Zebra wood, 18K Gold and Blue Topaz,

3.) Georg Jensen Lace Up Cuff with Cotton String,, $995.00

4.) Isharya Jaisel 18-karat gold-plated cuff,, $465.00



Best Cuffs

5.) Alexander McQueen Dragonfly Cuff,, $602.09

6.) Braided Beaded Cuff,, $6.80



Best Cuffs


7.) Discus Enamel Cuff,, $128.00

8.) Carved Rose Wide Stretch Cuff,, $23.00

9.) Stella & Dot Secret Garden Cuff,, $98.00


Best Cuffs

10.) Jennifer Fisher Brass Large Snake Cuff,, $315.00

11.) Isabel Marant Americana Wide Beaded Cuff,, $305.00



Best Cuffs



12.) Oscar de la Renta Lace Cuff Bracelet,, $395.00

13.) Mod Gold Clear Winding Cuff,, $245.00

14.) Geometric Rose Garden,





15.) Anna G, Brass Cuff,, $150.00

16.) Chanel Camélia Cuff in 18K Yellow Gold,

17.) Jungle Green Copacabana Cuff,, 425 €




Best Cuffs


18.) Givenchy Leather Cuff with Star Studs,, € 450.00

19.) Noir Jewelry Pastel Hacienda Cuff,, $88.00

20.) Yves Saint Laurent Black Mamba Cuff Bangle,, $1565.00




  • 22nd February 2013

It’s the perfect gift….For you and your daughter! For your sister (sister-in-law) and your niece! For your mom and her granddaughter! The possibilities are endless and endlessly adorably fun!  We love the bright pink and gold combo for the little ones.  They’re not outrageously expensive and if the girl’s chain breaks or gets lost it’s definitely not tragic.


Lulu Frost Alphabet Necklace
J Crew Girls Letter Necklace


 They match!  They’re stylish! They’re worth thinking about…..



Lulu Frost Letter Necklace
J Crew Girls Letter Necklace


Letter Necklace,, $385.00

Girls Letter Necklace,, $12.50


Lulu Frost Letter Necklace
Girls Letter Necklace J Crew


All letters are available!

Mark Your Calendar

  • 21st February 2013

While fossils are our key to past life, the namesake watch company since inception has been anything but!  Once again Fossil reigns as cutting-edge through their thoroughly modern, sleek collaboration with irreverent style-icon Karl Lagerfeld.  The distinctive time-piece line debuts in just a few days.


The Karl Seven

Photo Courtesy of:

The Karl Seven

Photo Courtesy of:





Seven runway ready watch platforms in a variety of sizes and colors were conceived completely from the visions of Lagerfeld… and set to motion with the exquisite touches of Fossil.


Below:  The “Karl Zip” Lagerfeld’s favorite silhouette.



Karl Zip

Photo Courtesy of:









Karl Zip

Photo Courtesy of: Fossil






Karl Lagerfeld and Fossil

Photo Courtesy of: Karl Lagerfeld


Luxe metallic leathers, pyramid studs and bold chains will set this collection apart.  Prices range from $150-$595 USD.  Each watch comes highlighted with a tiny image of the designer’s famed profile.



Karl Lagerfeld & Fossil

Photo Courtesy of: Fossil



The choice collection launches in select locations and online on February 28.



“You cannot buy time but you can get a beautiful watch to measure time, without spending a fortune.” Karl Lagerfeld




Prada’s Pretty Petals

  • 21st February 2013
Prada Tortoise Shell  Bloom Collection Earrings

Prada Tortoise Shell  Bloom Collection Earrings

Prada Tortoise Shell  Bloom Collection Earrings


Your eyes might have lingered over Prada’s recent ad campaign for the Bloom Collection featuring enamel, tortoise shell, chain link and the most delicate florals.


Prada Bloom Collection Earrings
The collection is definitely worth investigating at


Prada Bloom Collection Jewelry



Prices for earrings start at $695.00, necklaces start at $1,695.00




Prada Bloom Collection Ad



Tread Softly

  • 21st February 2013

Bold shoes with a gentle footprint, handmade in Portugal


Atlanta Mocassin

Atlanta Mocassins. Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Bambini


Atlanta Mocassin
Atlanta Mocassin

Atlanta Mocassin


Atlanta Mocassins are available in specialty stores in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Florida as well as worldwide. Find your local store, or online shop at


Atlanta Mocassin

Atlanta Mocassin



Atlanta Mocassin




Atlanta Mocassin




Atlanta Mocassin

Atlanta Mocassin


Purple Met Elastic,, $46.00

Violet hi Mocassin,, $51.00



More Atlanta Mocassins available at 14th Ave. Shoes,

If You’re Heading to…Maui

  • 21st February 2013

This revitalizing and truly delicious lemonade is one of the many things we long to take home from Maui.  Luckily the Four Seasons resort at Wailea was more than happy to share the coveted recipe.  If you are in Maui, stop in to sip it while overlooking the stunning views from the resort.  If you are at home, create, partake and prepare to be transported.


View from the Four Seasons Resort Wailea, Maui

View from the Four Seasons Resort Wailea, Maui


‘Awapuhi Pake

Recipe courtesy of the Four Seasons Wailea


4 cups Lemon Juice

3 cups Simple Syrup

1/2 gallon Water

2 Tbsp. of Mint

1/2 cup of Ginger, peeled and grated.

Add ice


Awapuhi Pake Lemonade

Awapuhi Pake Lemonade at the Four Seasons Wailea



The Four Seasons Resort Maui:  3900 Wailea Alanui Dr., HI 96753



Tropical Flowers

Florals on display at the Four Seasons Resort Maui



Recreate the tropical Hawaiian florals easily courtesy of Samara by Olive & Cocoa.  Serve ginger-infused lemonade alongside luscious pincushion protea, citrus hued mokara and dendrobium orhcids for a true island-effect.



Samara Olive & Cocoa

Samara,, $124

Parting Words…

  • 21st February 2013

“Physiologically, we are informed by mystery, and therein lies our potency.  Our sensitivity to forces outside the self is a gift.”


Antonella Gambotto-Burke on ‘The Gift of Feminity,’ Vogue Australia

Jazz Age Jewelry Strikes a High Note

  • 20th February 2013
Carey Mulligan as Daisy

Carey Mulligan as Daisy Buchanan. Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Australia


As the release date for Baz Luhrmann’s the Great Gatsby creeps ever nearer, May 10, so to does the hotly anticipated Tiffany & Co., Gatsby-esque collection, Ziegfeld.  The line, for which only a few pieces and images have been released debuts in April in store and online.  The Art Deco jewels worn by Carey Mulligan who portrays the sumptuous Daisy Buchanan were meticulously researched and conceived by costume designer Catherine Martin and the Tiffany & Co. team.

Extensive Tiffany & Co. archival photos were poured over to create the exquisite jewels worn by Mulligan and Debicki, the flatware and home décor used in the film as well as the cuff links and hip flask for Jay Gatsby.  Cultured pearls, diamonds, onyx and platinum reign in the Tiffany & Co. collection, which will take even us regular folks back to the roaring 20’s.




Cultured Pearl and Silver Sautoir from the Tiffany Ziegfeld Collection

Cultured Pearl and Silver Sautoir from the Tiffany Ziegfeld Collection: Photo Courtesy of Vogue Paris

The Great Gatsby Movie Still

Photo Courtesy of: Allociné

Savoy Diamond and Cultured Pearls Headpiece

Savoy Diamond and Cultured Pearls Headpiece. Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Paris







“Tiffany & Co seemed the perfect fit for the jewelry of The Great Gatsby not only because F. Scott Fitzgerald himself was a customer but also because Louis Comfort Tiffany, the brand’s first Design Director, mixed in the actual Long Island circles described in the novel,” said costume and production designer Catherine Martin. “The Tiffany & Co Archives have proven to be an invaluable resource in looking back at this Golden Era of affluence and fine jewelry and the continuing tradition of excellence and exquisite craftsmanship has allowed us to both create and recreate pieces that we hope will do justice to this extraordinary novel.”


Onyx Silver Cufflinks for the Tiffany & Co. Ziegfeld Collection

Onyx Silver Cufflinks for the Tiffany & Co. Ziegfeld Collection. Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Paris

Card Case Great Gatsby

Card Case: Photo Courtesy of Vogue Australia

Cultured Pearl and Silver Earrings

Cultured Pearl and Silver Earrings. Photo Courtesy of Vogue Paris




The Great Gatsby Movie Still

Photo Courtesy of: Allociné

Gatsby Movie Still

Photo Courtesy of: Allociné


The Ziegfeld Collection debuts in April, for more information visit:

Tiffany and Company Ziegfeld Collection as reported by Vogue Paris



Cultured Pearl, Onyx and Silver Ring, Ziegfeld Collection

Cultured Pearl, Onyx and Silver Ring. Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Paris

Romping Around

  • 18th February 2013

Often glamorous and always comfortable and effortlessly cool, the romper by day and the jumpsuit by night are flawless new pieces for any wardrobe.  Here are two beautiful examples for a touch of inspiration…


Emma Stone Jumpsuit

Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Magazine

Solange Knowles Romper

Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Magazine




Valentino Strapless Bow-Back Silk Jumpsuit
Valentino Strapless Bow-Back Silk Jumpsuit


Valentino Strapless Bow-Back Silk Jumpsuit,, $2980.00

Sorrento Romper


Sorrento,, $495.00

Antik Batik Barry Jumpsuit

Antik Batik Barry Jumpsuit,, $363.00


Sonia Rykiel Asymmetrical Jumpsuit

Sonia Rykiel Asymmetrical Jumpsuit,, $1,610.00

Bond Street Jumper


Bond Street Jumper,, $238.00

Étoile Etoile Isabel Marant Seth Jumpsuit

Étoile Isabel Marant Seth Jumpsuit,, $290.00



Splendid Parisian Tulip Romper


Parisian Tulip Romper,, $118.00


10 Crosby Derek Lam Diamond Open Back Romper

10 Crosby Derek Lam Diamond Open Back Romper,, $495.00

Accordance Lace Romper

Accordance Lace Romper,, $168.00


Sacai Embroidered Combo

Sacai Embroidered Combo,, $1,780 (pre-order)


Pour les Enfants:

Gucci Girls Floral Infinity Jumpsuit

Gucci Girls Floral Infinity Jumpsuit,, $345.00 (pre-order)

Spotty Playsuit


Spotty Playsuit,, $34.20

De Bon Goût—In Good Taste

  • 18th February 2013

It is sweet velvety comfort busting with nutritional value.   Sweet potatoes definitely should not be relegated to fried strips alongside burgers or within a casserole dish only at Thanksgiving.  This delicious soup brings the flavor of sweet potatoes center-stage.  The sweetness and color will vary based upon the variety you choose to use.


Sweet Potato & Parsnip Soup

Sweet Potato and Parsnip Soup with White Sweet Potatoes

Sweet Potato & Parsnip Soup

Sweet Potato and Parsnip Soup made with orange sweet potatoes


My Mother-in-Law’s Recipe!

1lb parsnips (parsnips are winter vegetables only, that require frost to turn their starch to a sweet sugar)
1 1/4lb of sweet potato
2Tbs of olive oil and 2Tbs of butter
2 large leeks
2 cloves of crushed garlic
1tsp of ground cumin
5 cups of chicken stock
2/3cup of milk or cream (optional)
Salt and pepper
Chives or parsley and or croutons to garnish


Sautée leeks and garlic in olive oil and butter.  Add peeled, cubed sweet potato and parsnips and sauté for 5-10 minutes stirring constantly.  Add stock, cumin, salt and pepper and cook until everything is soft.

Blend, and serve with a touch of cream, parsley and homemade croutons




  • 16th February 2013

Affecting, selfless, noble, the qualities of true heroes are always inspiring.  Let them shine with these cool, yet galvanizing tees that highlight courageous personas in the most fashionable way.


(These great shirts are shown on men, but they would look equally smashing on ladies)

Mahatma t-shirt

Mother Theresa tshirt

Martin Luther King

EAN 13 Collection short-sleeve t-shirt, manica/corta,  € 74,90


Mahatma Gandhi Change t-shirt



Mahatma Gandhi Change t-shirt,, $21.35


Freedom Fighters Lady Baby Doll Tee

Freedom Fighters Ladies Baby-doll Tee,, $19.99






Wear these shirts baggy and proudly with a fun, flouncy, colorful skirt such as…


Lanvin Woven Skirt


Lanvin Woven Skirt,, $1,665.00


Shemar Skirt


Shemar Skirt,, $74.40



Black & Gold

  • 15th February 2013
Elle Italy

Photo Courtesy of Elle Italia

Elle Italy

Photo Courtesy of Elle Italia

Elle Italy

Photo Courtesy of Elle Italia




It’s not revolutionary, just timeless, elegant and at the moment everywhere! Black and gold couple and create a stir.  Here are a few pictures from around the world as well as a few pieces to make you think…


Vogue Australia Cover

Photo Courtesy of Vogue Australia

Vogue Australia

Photo Courtesy of Vogue Australia



Dolce & Gabbana Vogue AU

Photo Courtesy of Vogue Australia


Hugo Boss Black Wedgest

Photo Courtest of Vogue Australia

Boss Black Vogue Australia

Photo Courtesy of Vogue Australia


Lanvin & Gucci

Photo Courtesy of L’Officiel

Paris Vogue

Photo Courtesy of Paris Vogue




Calvin Klein Bag

Photo Courtesy of Marie Claire



Giulietta,, $1720.00


Michael Kors

Michael Kors Embroidered Tunic Dress,, $2975.00


Rachel Zoe

Rachel Zoe Tassel Necklace,, $650.00


Aida Kibur Collar Necklace

Adia Kibur Crystal Encrusted Collar,, $135.00



Aquazzura, Martini Goldtone Chain Leather & Suede Sandals,, $995.00 (available on pre-order)


Namrata Top,, $186.00


Burberry Prossum Studded Leather Clutch

Burberry Prorsum Studded Leather Clutch,, $3,295.00



If You’re Heading to…Hong Kong

  • 15th February 2013

Spotlight:  Shanghai Tang

Founded in Hong Kong with the intention of reviving Chinese fashion of the 1920’s, Shanghai Tang has never been more fresh.  From home décor to children’s clothing it perfectly combines a classical Chinese flair with a modern touch.  If you are visiting Hong Kong, the flagship mansion is worth the trip, if not, you can access their online boutique.


 For the Home: 

Dragon Photo Frame Shanghai Tang
Porcelain Photo Frame Shanghai Tang


8R Dragon & Phoenix Wedding Photo Frame,, $189.00

4R Porcelain Collection Photo Frame,, $125.00


Lotus Square Jar with Lid Shanghai Tang
Empress Colour Decorative Tray Shanghai Tang



Lotus Square Jar with Lid,, $189.00

Empress Colour Decorative Tray,, $86.00


Lattice Candle Holder Shanghai Tang
Lattice Box in Lacquer Wood Shanghai Tang




Lattice Candle Holder,, $100.00

Lattice Box in Lacquer Wood,, $425.00



Double-Happiness Embroidered Cushion Cover
Double Happiness Embroidered Cushion Cover


Double Happiness Embroidered Cushion Cover,, $292.00


For You:



Shangri La Python Satchel



Shangri-La Python Satchel,, $2182.00



For the Girls:


Fancy Button Sweater Shanghai Tang
Save China's Tiger's Dress


Fancy Button Cardigan,, $122.00 (on sale! Hurry!)

Limited Edition Save China’s Tigers Sleeveless Dress,, $100.00



The flagship store, The Shanghai Tang Mansion, is located at:

1 Duddell Street in Central Hong Kong


Shanghai Tang Mansion


Their Manhattan address is:

600 Madison Avenue


Online Boutique:

De Bon Goût—In Good Taste

  • 15th February 2013


Five times in the past week alone I have been stopped and questioned about brussel sprout preparation.  Three times in the Farmer’s Market and twice in Whole Foods.  Thus it seems like a natural post.


Brussel Sprouts


If, like me, you’re attracted to their amazing hue—a splendidly royal purple during these winter months—feel confident and purchase them knowing that preparation is a cinch.



1.) Try to find baby sprouts as they are quicker to cut and cook.

2.) Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees

3.) Rinse thoroughly.  Select a few randomly and pull back the leaves for a bug check.  Like broccoli they can sometimes be absolutely infested with aphids.

4.) Slice in half, arrange in a baking tray.  Drizzle with olive oil, coarsely chopped garlic, generous salt and pepper

5.) Cook covered with foil for 10 minutes.  Uncover and cook for an additional 3-5 minutes until most have a ‘broiled’ brownish appearance


Prepared Brussels

Chaussures Brillantes

  • 14th February 2013

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Kids Fuschia,, $63.99


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Toddler/Youth Silver,, $77.99


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Navy,, $63.99

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Purple,, $100.99

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Brown,, $60.00

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada White,, $59.99


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada

Agatha Ruiz De La Prada Sandals Fuschia,, $26.99


Agatha Ruiz De La Prada

Vase Mercure

  • 14th February 2013

Mercury glass is uber-popular, very affordable and a great way to display colorful florals.

Because the glass is not completely transparent you can sneak in a few faux stems as well, one of our favorite tricks!  If the faux stem is extra long just bend it in a “U” shape.  The extra bit of branch which loops upward provides excellent support for more fragile flower stems like tulips to lean against.


Mercury glass, White faux orchids, Fresh flowers

Mercury glass, white faux orchids, fresh flowers


Mercury glass looks especially elegant with white faux orchids.  They blend in beautifully, add much needed dimension and of course, they are an investment to be re-used again and again.


Some of our favorite Mercury glass finds:


Mercury Glass Chalice Vase


Mercury Glass Chalice Vase,, $13.99


Mercury City Vase Extra Skinny


Mercury City Vase Extra Skinny,, $9.00—$34.00


Etched Mini Mercury Vase Pottery Barn


Etched Mini Mercury Glass Vases, set of 3,, $38.99 (on sale now!)


Silver Mercury Glass Vase Luna Bazaar


Silver Mercury Glass Vase,, $15.95


Mercury Glass Vases Pier 1


Mercury Glass Vases,, $5.48


Delicate Floral Vase Ones King Lane


Delicate Floral Vase,, $39.00


For good faux orchid stems please try:


Trending Tribal

  • 13th February 2013

Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Italia,


Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Italia,



Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Italia,


Photo Courtesy of: Vogue Italia,







These gorgeous photos from Italian Vogue gave us just the nudge we needed to complete a post that has been brewing for some time.  We’re calling it tribal, because it’s a fun word.

The below finds we’re calling modern/ethnic.  Don’t shy away from them, they are incredible and super easy to pull off!


Tribal 1


Tribal 2


Tribal 3


Tribal 4

Tribal 5





1.) Beaded Mini Skirt,, $129.00

2.) Toms Reina Tribal Wedge,, $69.00

3.) Tribal Oversized Necklace,, $44.00

4.) Tribal Print Halter,, $29.80

5.) Tribal Turquoise Seed Bead Shower Necklace,, £18.00

6.) Deepa Gurnani Tribal Stacked Cuff,, $99.00

7.) Amanda Uprichard Tribal Print Tie-Waist Dress,, $198.00

8.) Orinthia Ikat Dress,, $285.00

9.) Chloe Tribal Crochet T-Strap Sandal,, $422.00

10.) The Maasai Collections, Beaded Zip Cuff,, $145.00

11.) Panacea Bright Tribal Earrings,, $6.50

12.) Altzurra Tiger Ikat-print silk pencil skirt,, $1,835.00

13.) Alice by Temperley Santos Fitted Knit Dress,, $395.00

14.) Kabuto Tasseled Cuff,, $298.00

15.) Sass Lucy Polyester Tribal Playsuit,, $59.96 (Australian Dollars)

16.) Cara Couture Tribal Multi Strand Necklace,, $45.98

17.) BCBG Tiered Tribal Skirt,, $248.00

18.) Rebecca Minkoff M.A.C. clutch,, $395.00

19.) Current Elliott Tribal Ankle Skinny,, $218.00


Snapshots of a Vanishing World

  • 13th February 2013

Anyone who is interested in anything related to humankind will find this book fascinating.


Tribes of the Great Rift Valley

Photo Courtesy of:
Tribes of the Great Rift Valley

Tribes of the Great Rift Valley

Photo Courtesy of: Tribes of the Great Rift Valley



Excerpt from the dust jacket:

Tribes of the Great Rift Valley, likely to be the last ethnographic tome of its genre, is the epic photographic record of African heritage in the remote environs of the Great Rift Valley, a region recognized by scientists as the birthplace of humankind.  All people share an ancestral link to this unique geography where the fossil remains of four million years of human history lay scattered across 3,500 miles of territory stretching from Eritrea to Mozambique, revealing the story of our evolution on earth.


Tribes of the Great Rift Valley

Tribes of the Great Rift Valley, Elizabeth L. Gilbert



Tribes of the Great Rift Valley,, $75.00

Parting Words

  • 13th February 2013

…recent DNA evidence suggests that all human beings are related to a single African tribe that lived 60,000 years ago.


From the Introduction to: Tribes of the Great Rift Valley, Elizabeth L. Gilbert

Right on Top

  • 12th February 2013

If you’re looking for just one new top this spring, this may be it.  It promises to be flattering for any figure with both an ultra  forgiving fit and the opportunity to cinch the waist.  The color works for the office, a ladies lunch, or an evening event and the shimmer adds a dose of extra interest.

Rosalee Shimmer Sweater Tunic
Rosalee Shimmer Sweater Tunic
Rosalee Shimmer Sweater Tunic

Rosalee Shimmer Sweater Tunic, Calypso St. Barth, $295.00


These sandals perfectly pick-up the shimmer and complement the texture of the top.  The added bonus, Donald Pliner shoes are very comfortable and durable.


Delite Sandals Donald Pliner
Delite Sandals Donald Pliner


Delite Sandals, Donald Pliner,, $228.00


Cap them off with a bold red lipstick such as Givenchy  Le Rouge.


Givenchy Le Rouge in Warm Poppy Red


Givenchy Le Rouge 306 Carmin Escarpin in warm poppy red,, $36.00

A Little Bit of Luck

  • 12th February 2013

Four leaf clovers have symbolized accidental luck since the ancient times.  There’s nothing accidental about how they are popping up adorning jewelry and clothing this season.  With a little bit of luck and planning any of these pieces could be yours if you hurry before they’re gone!

Topping the list of clover-inspired wear this fabulous Milly dress:

Milly Dress


Milly Carlin Clover-Print Silk-Georgette Dress,, $425.00


Clover Silk Skirt Jcrew
Clover Silk Skirt Jcrew







Silk pleated skirt in mini medallion,, $128.00


Some Lucky Charms

Mini Clover Jennifer Zeuner Bracelet

Mini Clover Bracelet, Jennifer Zeuner Jewelry,, $143.00


Roberto Coin Primavera Smoky Quartz Clover Bangle


Roberto Coin Primavera Smoky Quartz Clover Bangle,, $1660.00


Shawn Clover Stud Earrings Tory Burch


Shawn Clover Stud Earrings, Tory Burch,, $78.00


Jennifer Meyer Gold Four Leaf Clover Pendant Necklace


Jennifer Meyer Gold Four-Leaf Clover Pendant Necklace,, $1,325.00

Lucky Ring Spinning Jewelry

Lucky,, $31.95


For the littlest leprechauns:


Vintage Inspired Jewelry for kids Garnet Hill
Vintage Inspired Jewelry for kids Garnet Hill




Vintage-Inspired Jewelry for Kids,, $36.50

The Little Black (and White) Dress

  • 11th February 2013

The visual appeal of black and white cannot be understated.  It’s always clean, striking, fresh and modern. From leather to ruffled, A-line to shift, there’s a dress to fit every personality and body type.



Black & White Dresses


Black & White Dresses


1.) Alice + Olivia Paige Striped Leather Shift Dress,, $997.00 (Pre-Order)

2.) Bow Tie Cora Dress,, $398.00

3.) Colorblocked Zippered Dress,, $24.80

4.) Sheri Bodell Namibia Tank Dress,, $194.00

5.) Michael, Michael Kors, Stretch-cotton poplin dress,, $175.00

6.) Lela Rose Square Neck Dress,, $1,195.00

7.) Michael Kors Belted cotton-crepe dress,, $1,995.00

8. Thakoon Addition Sleeveless Leopard Dress,, $490.00

9.) RED Valentino Lace-Hem Striped Knit Dress,, $495.00

10.) Combined Dress,, $59.90

11.) Theory Nikay B Dress,, $235.00

12.) Tibi Drop Waist Checker Dress,, $445.00


If You’re Heading to…Montenegro

  • 11th February 2013

You absolutely must eat a meal at Villa Miločer!  While we may not all be royalty, we can enjoy the ambiance and view from   what was once the summer residence of Queen Marija Karađorđević.


Villa Milocer Queens Beach


Wisteria hangs overhead, more than 800 olive trees stand in the surrounding woods, ancient pine and cedar forests sweeten the air  and the views of the island of Sveti Stefan, pink sand and the gentle Adriatic absolutely amaze!


Villa Milocer Aman

Photo Courtesy of: Aman Sveti Stefan



The menu changes often, but locally caught seafood is a specialty and the homemade pasta with fresh tomato sauce is the best we have ever tastedtrumping anything we even had in Italy!  Ask if they can prepare it for you off-menu and you will not be disappointed!



Vila Millocer Aman

Dusk View, Photo: Aman Sveti Stefan

Villa Milocer Aman

Pine forest surrounding Villa Milocer




More information available at:






Xin Nian Kuai Le

  • 10th February 2013

Today marks the beginning of the Chinese New Year and we pay homage to the great snake, as it is her year!  In honor of this Spring Festival, today is the perfect day to invest in a little serpent-inspired treat.  Here are our favorite picks



Snake String Bracelet Kismet

Snake String Bracelet—Kismet by Milka,, $1,240.00


Chloe Studded Python Ankle Boots


Chloé Studded Python Ankle Boots,, $1,750.00


Kara Ross Glitter Embellished Water Snake Skin Ring




Kara by Kara Ross Glitter Embellished Water Snake Skin Resin Ring,, $108.00


Aurelie Bidermann Snake Mamba Bracelet


Aurelie Bidermann Snake Mamba Bracelet,, $630.00


Rachel Zoe Laura Snake Ballet Flats
Rachel Zoe Laura Snake Ballet Flats
Rachel Zoe Laura Snake Ballet Flats




Rachel Zoe Laura Snake Ballet Flats,, $235.00


Ileana Makri Lucky Snake 18-karat rose gold, diamond and ruby earrings

Ileana Makri Lucky Snake 18-karat rose gold, diamond and ruby earrings,, $2,850


Robert Clergerie Quimis
Robert Clergerie Quimis


Robert Clergerie Quimis,, $850.00


Chloé Marcie Perforated Snake Embossed Leather Shoulder Bag

Chloé Marcie Perforated Snake Embossed Leather Shoulder Bag,, $3505.00

Thayer Bralette Bikini
Thayer Bralette Bikini



Thayer Bralette Bikini,, $101.00


Snake Embossed Print Sandals Stella McCartney



Snake Embossed Print Sandals Stella McCartney,, € 275.00


Le Ciné File

  • 9th February 2013

Whatever your views on the movie itself, Kristen Stewart’s sunglasses in ‘On the Road,’ are a certain talking point.


 Sunglasses On the Road


Sunglasses On the Road


Here are three that come awfully close to recreating the casual cool…


Retrosun vintage Gucci glasses
Ray Ban Original Way Farer
Max Mara Sunglasses

Photo Courtesy of Elle Italia

Retrosun Vintage Gucci glasses,, $325.00

Ray-Ban RB2140 Original Wayfarer Sunglasses,, $155.00

MaxMara by Safilo, Photo Courtesy of:  Elle Italia



Five more styles worth investigating:


Victoria Beckham Aviator Sunglasses


Victoria Beckham Aviator-style acetate sunglasses,, $535.00

Ray Ban Retro Cat Eyes

Ray-Ban Retro Cay Eye,, $140.00


Stella McCartney Round Sunglasses in Soft Pink
Stella McCartney Round Sunglasses in Soft Pink



Stella McCartney Round Sunglasses in soft pink,, $225.00


Lanvin Round Sunglasses
Lanvin Round Sunglasses



Lanvin Round Sunglasses in shiny opaline ivory/brown,, $450.00


Missoni by Allison

Photo Courtesy of Elle Italia

Missoni by Allison



Reine des Roses

  • 9th February 2013

The queen of the roses it is!  A David Austin rose, the quintessential English Garden rose, is typically large, resplendently adorned with petals carrying a heady scent—besides being tremendously in vogue with florists right now.  

Garden roses are being used in all of the most elegant arrangements.  So, why not go straight to the source and order your next arrangement from David Austin itself.  This great tip came from my father, a passionate gardener, rose aficionado, creative thinker and true romantic (luckily for mum!).


A few pictures to entice….


Vintage Bouquet David Austen
Floral Tapestry Bouquet David Austen


Now imagine the scent from these luscious blooms!!  Totally different from your average florist arrangement.  


The above two are:

Vintage Bouquet,, $90.00

Evoke days gone by with this lavish bouquet. The rich colors and old-world romantic style of Darcey, Miranda and Phoebe give this arrangement an air of nostalgic charm and elegance. Phoebe also has a lovely fruity scent.


Floral Tapestry Bouquet,, $90.00

Bring the spirit of the garden into the home with this vibrant bouquet. Darcey, Phoebe and Juliet create an explosion of color with their spectacularly bold blooms. Phoebe also has a lovely fruity scent.



If you are looking for more mono-chromatic tones you can try:

Juliet Rose Garden Bouquet

Tranquility Bouquet David Austen


Juliet Rose Garden Bouquet,, $90.00

Juliet’s soft peachy shades intermingle with ruscus and hypericum creating an arrangement that radiates warmth and romance. Juliet has large, elegant flower heads with spectacularly beautiful rosette forms. Its unusual coloring and sophisticated form explains why Juliet has become such a highly desirable rose. There is a delicate Tea Rose fragrance.


 Tranquility Bouquet,,$90.00

The pastel tones of Juliet and Patience harmonize perfectly in this ultra-pretty bouquet. Patience has a captivating fresh old rose fragrance.


(All descriptions courtesy of the David Austin site,

Short Order

  • 8th February 2013

A look at some of the best shorts to kick-start the season!  A few are almost sold-out already…

Calypso St. Barth Silk Short
Calypso St. Barth Silk Short


Silk Short,, $145.00


Gucci Floral Linen Short
Gucci Floral Print Linen Short

Gucci Flora Infinity Print White Linen Short,, $795.00


Giambattista Valli, Leopard-Print silk-shantung shorts
Giambattista Valli, Leopard-Print silk-shantung shorts


Giambattista Valli, Leopard-Print silk-shantung shorts,, $795.00


ALC Cash Leather Shorts
ALC Cash Leather Shorts

A.L.C Cash Leather Shorts,, $751.00


Carven Paisley Printed Shorts
Carven Paisley Printed Shorts


Carven Paisley Print Shorts,, $220.00


Band of Outsiders Travel Printed Shorts
Band of Outsiders Travel Printed Shorts


BOY. By Band of Outsiders, Travel Printed Shorts,, $205.00


Anna Sui Embroidered Chiffon Shorts
Yigal Azrouel Tech Crepe Shorts


Anna Sui Embroidered Chiffon Shorts,, $280.00

Yigal Azrouel Tech Crepe Shorts,, $370.00


Rag and Bone Yvette Shorts


Rag & Bone Ivette Shorts,, $255.00



Collection Gilded Brocade Jcrew
Collection Gilded Brocade Jcrew


Collection Gilded Brocade Shorts,, $138.00


Butterfly Shorts Jcrew
Butterfly Shorts Jcrew


Butterfly Short,, $65.00


Pre-Order Please

  • 8th February 2013


Coming to us by way of Australia, and already very popular internationally, Sue Di Chio has exploded onto the American fashion scene.  Typically more difficult to find in the U.S., her dresses are available now by pre-order at Neiman Marcus online.  Here’s a sneak peek at two pieces we love, which you can purchase in advance.


Suboo Nostalgic Asymmetric Dress
Suboo Nostalgic Asymmetric Dress






Suboo Nostalgic Asymmetric Dress,, $375.00


Suboo Printed Jagged Hem Dress
Suboo Printed Jagged Hem Dress









Suboo Printed Jagged-Hem Dress,, $270.00


Suboo is also available at (Westfield, Australia)



Married in Mustique Suboo



Married in Mustique Maxi Dress,, $349.00 (Australian Dollars)



Nostalgic Light Pleated Dress Suboo



Nostalgic Light Pleated Maxi Dress,, $399.00 (AUD)


Ipanema Bandeau Bikini


Ipanema Bandeau Bikini,, $101.40 (AUD)


For more Suboo creations go to:

Mark Your Calendar

  • 7th February 2013

If you have not heard of London-based Duro Olowu that’s OK.  But, now, go visit his site:

Once all of the brilliant patterns in the most vivid colors have soaked in, let this soak in to…The Nigerian-born designer has collaborated with JC Penney and the collection comes out in March (just a few weeks away!).  Unlike other fashion collaborations where a lot gets lost in translation, this collection does not disappoint.  It looks much like his runway Spring/Summer show and he pushes the aesthetic through to his home collection as well which includes everything from dinner plates to splashy umbrellas.


Photo Courtesy of: Doru Olowu

Photo Courtesy of: Doru Olowu



So, if you have a JC Penney retailer close-by it’s worth a trip come March, if not is just a click away. Make sure to make a note!


Plate Doro Olowu

Photo Courtesy of: Elle Décor

Umbrella Doro Olowu

Photo Courtesy of: Elle Décor



Les Souliers d’Amour

  • 7th February 2013

If only the little shoe-maker looking for love had taken cues from Hogan and called on the likes of Katie Grand!  This talented style chameleon is responsible for these spirited loafers spotlighted in L’Officiel Paris.


Hogan Heart Loafers

Photo Courtesy of:
L’Officiel Paris


For these playful shoes you need a good bronzer for your legs, a modern skirt and simple structured t-shirt.  Mirroring the bold color contrast in the loafers, we love these Kate Spade pearls.  They pair perfectly emphasizing the  girly with a sharp-angled, contrasting black bow.


Kate Spade Triple Strand



Kaelen, Neoprene Wrap Skirt,, $335.00

Unisex Tri-Blend, Short Sleeve, Deep V-Neck, in Tri-color Indigo,, $24.00

Kate Spade Black-Tie Optional Triple Strand,, $278.00


Parting Words…

  • 7th February 2013

On writing:

“The approach to structure in factual writing is like returning from a grocery store with materials you intend to cook for dinner.  You set them out on the kitchen counter, and what’s there is what you deal with, and all you deal with.”


The New Yorker, January 14, 2013, “Structure,” by John McPhee

des Animaux

  • 6th February 2013

Who says animal themes only work for young children’s birthdays?  Here are a few ways to create an evening soirée with a subtle, chic safari theme.


Start with the perfect cocktail dress:


Issa Zebra Print Silk Dress
Issa Zebra Print Silk Dress


Differing from the usual cat-spots, this fresh, swoopy, silky Issa dress sports a striped zebra/tiger motif.  It’s super flattering and comfortable.

Issa Zebra-Print Silk Dress,, $550



try a Safari inspired canvas skirt with great hard-ware, accented by bright orange booties


Leather Trimmed Skirt

Leather-trimmed Galston Skirt,, $298.00

Penelope Suede Oxford Bootie, in orange,, $695.00


Papier-mâché wall art is absolutely prize-winning

Papier Mache West Elm
Papier Mache West Elm






Papier-mâché Animal Sculptures,, $99.00-$199.00



Crested Crane Bust

Crested Crane Bust

Crested Crane Bust,, $198.00



A coffee table book featuring the most majestic creatures


On This Earth, A Shadow Falls


Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt


On this Earth, A Shadow Falls by Nick Brandt,, $96.38


Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, Nick Brandt


Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, by Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, by Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, by Nick Brandt

Photo Courtesy of: A Shadow Falls, by Nick Brandt

Themed dinnerware provides the perfect accent


Jurliska Bamboo Dinnerware


Juliska Bamboo Natural Dinnerware,, $22.00—$198.00

Le Tigre Dinnerplate Anthropologie


Le Tigre dinner plate,, $24.00


Elephant Dinner Plate

Elephant Dinner Plate,, $28.10


Mikasa Animal Print Plates

Mikasa Black/Platinum Animal Print Plates,, $39.99


De Bon Goût—In Good Taste

  • 6th February 2013

Today’s posts are calling for accompaniment from a rich-meaty North African tagine recipe.  We’ve tried this numerous times and because it can be cooked well in advance while you are prepping the house for your evening event, it is perfect.  Guests will be greeted by the most amazing aromas.  Enjoy!


Recipe taken from, “Around the World Cookbook,”  by Hermes House Press



Photo Courtesy of: Around the World Cookbook


Beef Tagine with Sweet Potatoes


This warming dish is eaten during the winter in Morocco, where, especially in the mountains, the weather can be surprisingly cold.  Tagines, by definition, are cooked on the stove (or, more often in Morocco, over coals).  However, this works well cooked in the oven.


Ingredients:  (serves 4)

1 ½ to 2 pounds stewing beef

2 tablespoons sunflower oil

Good pinch of ground turmeric

1 large onion chopped

1 fresh red or green chili, seeded and chopped

1 ½ teaspoons paprika

Generous pinch of cayenne pepper

½ teaspoons ground cumin

1 pound sweet potato

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon butter

salt and freshly ground black pepper


Trim the meat and cut into ¾ inch cubes.  Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole and fry the meat, together with the turmeric and seasoning, over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, until evenly brown, stirring frequently. Cover the pan tightly and cook for 15 minutes over fairly low heat, without lifting the lid.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.


Add the onion, chili paprika, cayenne pepper and cumin to the pan together with just enough water to cover the meat.  Cover tightly and cook for 1-1 ½ hours until the meat is very tender, checking occasionally and adding a little extra water to keep the stew fairly moist.


Meanwhile peel the sweet potatoes and slice them straight into a bowl of salted water (sweet potatoes discolor very quickly).  Transfer to a pan, bring to a boil and then simmer for 2-3 minutes, until just tender.  Drain.


Stir the herbs into the meat, adding a little extra water if the stew appears dry.  Arrange the potato slices over the meat and dot with the butter.  Cover and cook for another 10 minutes or until the potatoes feel very tender.  Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees or heat the broiler.


Remove the lid of the casserole and cook in the oven or under the broiler for another 5-10 minutes, until the potatoes are golden.

Tagine Around the World Cookbook

Photo Courtesy of: Around the World Cookbook


The Around the World Cookbook,, $31.91 new


Around the World Cookbook


des Animaux (pour les petits)

  • 6th February 2013

We can’t totally leave the kids out!  A few fun finds that even the little ones will enjoy.


Beba Bean animal friends are adorably elegant in all white and super cuddly.  A soft addition to the crib and never hard on the eyes when left all over the house.

Beba Bean Knit Sack Animals

Beba Bean Knit Sack Lion




Beba Bean knit sack animals,, $14.25—$22.00






Blue Elephant Plate,, $16.00

My Lion,, $28.00

Giraffe paper,, $4.50

Voleur: Steal This Look

  • 5th February 2013

If budget is no issue then we invite you try on any of the below fresh earring styles that caught our fancy.  If, however, your earring budget for the spring is under $10 per pair…explore for a few knock-offs of fabulous spring trends.

Oscar de la Renta Cabochon earrings





1.) Oscar de la Renta Cabochon Drop Clip Earrings, $450

2.) Fringed Drop Earrings in Red or Yellow,, $6.80


Rachel Zoe Geo Earrings

1.) Rachel Zoe Deco Drop Earrings, $260

2.) Fringed Geo Earrings,, $6.80


Isabel Marant Beaded Hoop earrings


1.) Isabel Marant Beaded Hoop Earrings, $155

2.) Embossed Circle Earrings,, $4.80


Mallarino Filigree Earring

1.) Mallarino, Rocio small 24-karat gold vermeil filigree earrings, $305

2.) Goddess Crescent Filigree Earrings,, $6.80


Oscar de la Renta Panther Earrings

1.)Oscar de la Renta Crystal Panther Clip Earrings $295

2.) Jaguar Stud Set,, $3.80





  • 5th February 2013

It’s been less than 2 weeks and we’re covering another chocolate company (I know!).  But Valentine’s Day is right around the corner providing the perfect excuse!?

Discovered by my sister who has an uber-discriminating palate, in the Amsterdam airport almost 15 years ago, we have been obsessed ever since.  For a while you could only buy Neuhaus chocolates in Europe or Neiman Marcus, but now, we are happy to report they are available to us all online (and at many fine retailers throughout the United States).

The 14th awaits, buy them for yourself…we often do!

Manon Sucre

Made from buttercream and sugar within their chocolate atelier

Neuhaus Manon Sucre

Truffle Tiramisu

Buttercream with tiramisu taste covered in Amaretti cookie

Neuhaus Truffle Tiramisu


Nougatine cookie filled with ganache from hazelnuts

Neuhaus Praline Cookie


Vanilla fresh cream on a gianduja base

Neuhaus Vanilla Fresh Cream


 And many more decadent flavors

This fine Belgian chocolate company claims to have invented the “praline” and we don’t doubt it.  All chocolates are still created and packaged near Brussels.






Cheap & Chic

  • 4th February 2013
Indian Silk Bangle Set

Indian Silk Bangle Set


It’s hard to take your eyes off of these brilliantly colorful bangles from Indian Bazaar.

Silk Bangle Set, Indian Bazaar,, $45.00 (and no plane ticket required!)


Pair by day with:


White Ruffle Sassy Sarong
Pluie feather clip
Stila kitten lip gloss


Ruffle Sarong Long White,, $36.99

PLUIE, feather barrette,, $125.00

Stila Silk Shimmer Gloss in Kitten Shimmering Pale Pink,, $22.00


AND——A fabulous beach-side or pool-side restaurant



Pair by night with:

Bess Jumpsuit,, $228.00

Chloe Alice Small Satchel Bag Teal,, $1695.00

Diorshow Iconic Mascara in Deep Blue,, $28.50


AND——A lively gallery show


Black Jumpsuit Guess
Chloe Alice Bag in Teal
Diorshow mascara in navy


If You’re Heading to…Shanghai

  • 4th February 2013

Or, someone you know is, Chou Chou Chic is worth a stop! Any little girl in your life will thank you for their unique dresses and coats, but it is their playfully designed cheongsams that are a stand-out.  We only wish they made them in bigger sizes! 

Chou Chou Chic collage


Chou Chou Chic Collage


Shanghai Boutique Locations

CHOUCHOU CHIC Taikang road No.248 TaiKang Road,unit47(TianziFang) TEL:021-64150520

CHOUCHOU CHIC Changle Road No.162-8 Shanxi Nan Road(on Changle road) TEL:021-54035626

CHOUCHOU CHIC Ruijin Road No.77-4 Rui Jin Er Road,Shanghai TEL:021-53825328

CHOUCHOU CHIC Maoming Road No.131-1 Mao Ming Nan Road,Shanghai TEL:021-54652835

Chou Chou Chic Store
Chou Chou Chic Store
Chou Chou Chic Bag



Clothing is also available online if you are unable to get to Shanghai any time soon.  Pricing is all in Euros.


Chou Chou Chic cheongsam

Le Zig-Zag

  • 3rd February 2013

The inverted “V” chevron pattern is popular with everyone from the military to migrating birds.  Here are a few fresh takes on the design which is as old as Ancient Greece.

Chevron Clothes


1.) Chan Luu Chevron Sequin Mini Skirt,, $295.00

2.) Gorjana Chevron Tribal Earrings,, $65.00

3.) Current Elliott The Ankle Skinny Jeans,, $218.00

4. Sonia by Sonia Rykiel Chevron Sweater in Vita Multi,, $460.00

5.) Milly, Carina Chevron Sheath Dress,, $375.00

6.) Stella McCartney Chevron Mesh Sweater,, $880.00

7.) RHIÉ Chevron Stretch Pencil Skirt,, $350 (available on pre-order)

8.) Trina Turk Corinne Chevron Dress,, $268.00

9.) Wayuu Bracelet, Silvia Tcherassi,, $120.00

10.) High-waisted chevron shorts,, $19.80



Pour La Maison

 Chevron Decor Collage


1.) Chevron Banded Drum Shade,, $118.00-$128.00

2.) Blue ZigZar Tibor,, $185.00

3.) Chevron Picture Frames,, $28.00

4.) Mint Green Zig Zag Pillow,, $49.95

5.) Grey Chevron Pouf,, $116.00

6.)Chevron Patterned Knit Throw,, $195.00

7.) Chevron Mirror,, $379.00

8.) Threshold Chevron Shag Area Rug, 5’X7’,, $279.99


What I Love Today…

  • 3rd February 2013

My amazingly health conscious, Ashland-Oregon based friend has been turning up aces recently with a wide range of all-natural delicious treats.  Many of them are blog-worthy, but this 100% pure Maple Candy is in season right now and not for long.  A delicious dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, guilt-free gift for yourself or someone else.

Coombs Family Farms Maple Candy
Coombs Family Farms

De Bon Goût—In Good Taste

  • 2nd February 2013

On Robertson Blvd., in an area not even slightly reminiscent of Capri is the enchanting bakery for the Ivy, Dolce Isola.

The ambiance is classic shabby chic café/bistro, perfect for a lazy Saturday morning and the treats are far from ordinary.  While their gelato is suitably creamy and their croissants flaky and buttery what truly is worth the trip is the baguette and cheese crackers.

Serve the baguette at a dinner party and it will steal the show (trust us).  The inside is light as air, like cotton-candy and the outside crunchy, crisp and salty.  With the right cheese (Surfas is just minutes away), it’s heaven.  Tangy, sharp, a bit spicy and salty, their cheese biscuits are divinity.  They must be pre-ordered one day in advance so plan ahead suitably.

If you do not reside here in sunny Southern California, don’t fret.  We have a similar cheese biscuit recipe clipped from Bon Appetit (tried, tested, delicious and easy) and a tip on how to recreate the café ambiance at home.


Dolce Isola Los Angeles



Savory Parmesan Shortbread Rounds 

(recipe courtesy of Bon Appetit)—Serve with pre-dinner drinks and salumi platter—Makes 24


1 3/4 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese (about 2 1/2 ounces)

1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt

1/2 small garlic clove, properly minced

Pinch of cayenne pepper

1 cup (2 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes


Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.  Mix flour, 3/4 cup Parmesan cheese, salt, garlic, and cayenne pepper in processor.  Add butter and, using on/off turns, process until dough begins to come together.  Gather dough into ball.  Divide dough in half.  Roll each half into 12-inch log, and cut each log into 1-inch pieces.  Roll each piece into a ball.  Arrange dough balls on prepared baking sheet, spacing about 1 1/2 inches apart.  Press each ball into 2-inch diameter round.  Sprinkle remaining 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese over.

Bake shortbread rounds until tops are dry and bottoms are golden brown, about 20 minutes.  Transfer shortbread rounds to rack and cool completely.

Shortbread rounds can be made 1 week ahead.  Store rounds in airtight container at room temperature, or freeze up to 1 month.


Cheese crackers, Dolce Isola Los Angeles



Dolce Isola, 2869 S. Robertson Blvd., Los Angeles, 90034


8am – 4pm, Monday through Friday
8am – 3pm, Saturday
Closed Sunday


Voleur: Steal this Look

  • 2nd February 2013

Dolce Isola Bakery Los Angeles

Dolce Isola Bakery

Recreate the Euro-chic café look at Dolce Isola with simple unframed artwork, brightly-hued bistro chairs, generous bunches of multi-colored flowers and over-sized blue & white vases.




1.) Fermob Bistro Metal Chair,, $198.00

2.) Happiness Pots,, $239.00

3.) Chinese Lidded Jar Floral Garden,, $89.00

4.) Altered Ego Chair, Spindles,, $348.00

5.) Red Geraniums print,, $159.00

6.) Poupée Porcelaine,, $948.00


Lace it Up!

  • 1st February 2013

It’s the combination of dense embroidery and open space, coupled together, that makes the delicate pattern of lace so incredibly dynamic.  At the moment it is also ubiquitous, but there are still a few pieces that stand apart.


Lace collage

Lace Collage


1.) Sacai Luck Floral Lace Striped Dress,, $895.00

2.) Lace Print Pencil,, $118.00

3.) RED Valentino Skirt,, $850.00

4.) Pre-Order Collection Lace-Stripe Tuxedo Pant,, $445.00

5.) Milly Walker cotton-blend lace top,, $250.00

6.) Christian Louboutin Milady 100 Chantilly lace and satin peep toe pumps,,  $995.00

7.) Lanvin One-Shoulder Floral Lace Top,, $2095.00 (available on pre-order)

8.) Dress, H&M, Navy Lace, $29.95, available in-store

9.) Panther Lace Pants,, $170.00

10.) Daisy Lace Minaudiere,, $278.00

11.) Faux Leather Cut Work Skirt,, $79.90


For lace, vintage can be an exquisite option.  Many specialty vintage boutiques provide lovely lace waists (waist is a common term for a woman’s shirt from the early 19th century through the Edwardian period) that look amazing paired with your favorite broken-in boyfriend, or skinny black jeans.  The two below are from Paris 1900.  Enter this gem of a boutique in Santa Monica to find a curated collection of vintage and vintage-inspired lace blouses, dresses and boleros.



Paris 1900 Santa Monica
Paris 1900 Lace Shirt


Battenburg Tape Lace Top with hand-done brides, Circa 1900, $650.00, Paris 1900, Santa Monica

Edwardian Vintage Waist, Circa 1910, $325.00, Paris 1900, Santa Monica


Add an Edwardian touch to your home décor with this delicately modern table by moooi

Moooi Crochet Table


Lace crochet table,

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