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, shopbop.com, $335.00

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

Kate Spade Black-Tie Optional Triple Strand, katespade.com, $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, net-a-porter.com, $550



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


Leather Trimmed Skirt

Leather-trimmed Galston Skirt, ralphlauren.com, $298.00

Penelope Suede Oxford Bootie, in orange, ralphlauren.com, $695.00


Papier-mâché wall art is absolutely prize-winning

Papier Mache West Elm
Papier Mache West Elm






Papier-mâché Animal Sculptures, west-elm.com, $99.00-$199.00



Crested Crane Bust

Crested Crane Bust

Crested Crane Bust, anthropologie.com, $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, barnesandnoble.com, $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, www.gearys.com, $22.00—$198.00

Le Tigre Dinnerplate Anthropologie


Le Tigre dinner plate, anthropologie.com, $24.00


Elephant Dinner Plate

Elephant Dinner Plate, www.zazzle.com, $28.10


Mikasa Animal Print Plates

Mikasa Black/Platinum Animal Print Plates, amazon.com, $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, amazon.com, $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, bebabean.com, $14.25—$22.00






Blue Elephant Plate, darlingclementinesshop.com, $16.00

My Lion, darlingclementinesshop.com, $28.00

Giraffe paper, darlingclementinesshop.com, $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 Forever21.com 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, Forever21.com, $6.80


Rachel Zoe Geo Earrings

1.) Rachel Zoe Deco Drop Earrings, $260

2.) Fringed Geo Earrings, Forever21.com, $6.80


Isabel Marant Beaded Hoop earrings


1.) Isabel Marant Beaded Hoop Earrings, $155

2.) Embossed Circle Earrings, Forever21.com, $4.80


Mallarino Filigree Earring

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

2.) Goddess Crescent Filigree Earrings, Forever21.com, $6.80


Oscar de la Renta Panther Earrings

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

2.) Jaguar Stud Set, Forever21.com, $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.