Wednesday, November 30, 2011


via Martha Stewart

I don't fancy myself a great chef. My preferred diet consists of mainly cheese and bread with a little lettuce thrown in and topped off with ice cream. No cooking required. However, apparently our bodies need fruits, vegetables and proteins so I try to sneak those in where I can. In an effort to break up the monotony of mine and my beau's past few dinners (pasta, pizza, frozen lasagna, Thanksgiving leftovers, pasta, pizza), I staged a no holds barred indoor cook-out...from hereon known as the winter cook-in.

Of course, there were potatoes- helloooo starch- but I snuck in the asparagus for its promise to de-bloat and to add a little green. I roasted the potatoes for 30 minutes at 415 degrees and then added the asparagus to cook them and the potatoes for 10 more minutes.

While they were cooking, black-eyed peas and kidney beans simmered on the stovetop. Once they had softened, I mashed them up and mixed them in with grated carrots and bread crumbs. The mash can be easily rounded into bean patties, which I then cooked in oil on the stove. Three to four minutes on each side does the trick. (There must be a healthier option but this is a COOK-IN for goodness sake!)

And would you believe me if I told you that I made barbecue sauce from scratch? It's actually really easy. Real chefs probably already knew that. But it is taaaaasty on those burgers!

Voila! The finished product! It's a good little meal to remind of summer's sunshine and warmth.

Of course, no cook-in would be complete without dessert. Double fudge brownies offer deliciousness. I could tell you I made those from scratch too but I'd be lying...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011


via Washington Post

George Harrison
Feb. 25, 1943-Nov. 29, 2001

Solid Style

Marlene Dietrich via

LeeLee Sobieski via

After writing yesterday's post on Her Serene Highness (of style!), I've had my eye out for more classic, clean and tailored pieces. There are some truly gorgeous options this season from some expected and unexpected sources. I must say that Rachel Zoe's Fall 2011 line has some great Parisian chic pieces that really hit the mark. Day Birger et Mikkelsen also surprised me with its selection not to mention good old ZARA!

Check out a few of my finds below...

Rachel Zoe tuxedo jacket via

L'Agence velvet pants via Net-A-Porter

Bird by Juicy Couture blazer via Net-A-Porter

Equipment blouse via Net-A-Porter (my personal favorite!)

Lela Rose via Net-A-Porter

Zara leather jacket via
Day Birger et Mikkelsen top via Net-A-Porter (my other favorite!)

By Malene Birger via Net-A-Porter

Rachel Zoe suit and top from her Fall 2011 lookbook

T by Alexander Wang via Net-A-Porter

Nanette Lepore tweed jacket- personal photo

Obviously, you can funk up these pieces with a leopard print heel or day glo clutch, but I think keeping the entire look classic and playing up your hair and make-up sounds much more fun. You could always go for a classic red lip a la Leelee (top) but lately the gunmetal grays have really been making their way onto runways and red carpets.

via In Style Australia

Chanel runway make-up via Rutheb

Today, I'm trying to practice what I preach- I'm wearing a J. Crew black and white button down, black skinny James Jeans and black gel eyeliner. Of course, my button down is patterned but we have to ease into these things, don't we? Perhaps a trip for some Alexander Wang is in order later today...

Monday, November 28, 2011

Style Sophisticate

via Hello Magazine

Lately, I have really had a craving for subtle, sophisticated style. I'm feeling sort of done right now with all of the busy patterns and trying-to-hard clashing colors. You must be wondering if I fell and bumped my noggin over the holiday as I am the QUEEN of way-too-many-colors-at-once, but I seem to have finally joined with the rest of the mature, stylish world when I realized solids and neutrals just have this classic staying power that looks chic no matter one's age, the season or even the year.

via Independent

I knew just who to turn to for a little sophisticate inspiration. Her Serene Highness (don't you just love that?!) The Princess of Monaco, aka Charlene Wittstock.

The South African swimmer turned Monaco maven has caught my eye- and others' as well, as she's seen above seated with Anna Wintour at Paris Fashion Week- with her sartorial selections. Whether sexy chic in Armani or properly tailored in Akris, Her Serene Highness always looks not only appropriate and polished but also chic and glamorous.

via TopDekk

via Sip With Socialites

via Royal Fashionistas

via Nick Verreos

via Nick Verreos

These looks clearly aren't about being trendy, per se, but are undoubtedly fashionable. There is a sharpness to her style that keeps her from looking frumpy. Dare I say, she reminds me of another royal woman...a Hollywood royal, that is.


So now that we have our inspirations- foreign and domestic- it's time to source these items in shops! I'll be doing a little shopping and will report back to let you know what I come up with. Until then, stay solid, my friends!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

La Table Thanksgiving

Martha Stewart Table Setting via Anne Sage

It's so hard to believe that Thanksgiving is ONE WEEK away! While I don't eat turkey, I do love some to eat some mashed potatoes and decorate a Thanksgiving tables cape.

This year, I'm particularly fond of Serena & Lily's new table linens. Traditional? No. Gorgeous? Yes. Plus, and don't hate me for saying this, I truly despise anything too literal or theme-y at the holidays. Sorry, not a Scrooge, just like to keep my options open!

Marabella Place Setting via Serena & Lily

Back to the decor- this year, I've decided to go with a turquoise and gold theme- turquoise in honor of my coastal dwellings (and in the top five of favorite colors) and gold in honor of the special holiday. The Marabella napkins, tablecloths and placemats all have either gilded edging or color blocking that make this casual cotton linen set a bit more glamorous and unique.

Marabella Placemat via Serena & Lily

Marabella Napkin via Serena & Lily

Marabella Tablecoth and Runner via Serena & Lily

Tablecloth Edge via Serena & Lily

I also happen to think these table linens would work nicely with my dinnerware...and, p.s., Vietri has started making this pattern in METALLIC. EEK!

Incanto in Aqua and White via Vietri

And since I'm in the process of painting and making some "adjustments" to my dining room, I think it's only appropriate that a few pieces from Society Social complete the space.

The Stanton Bar Cart in Gold

The Darlington Chair in Turquoise

So are you officially excited about the holidays yet?? If not, you have about six days to get ready!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Collars and Cuffs

Michael Kors via

via unknown

via Atlantic-Pacific

Any time I try to utter the word "choker," I want to throw up in my mouth a little bit. So let's call these cool, sleek metal neck pieces collars, mmmkay? And their wristed counterparts? We know they are cuffs. And this fall, I'm daydreaming of collars and cuffs in all of their sleek metallic splendor.

via Nordstrom

Dannijo for Vena Cava via Shopbop

Chokers invoke that "My So Called Life" grunge style from the early '90s. No, I'm not going there (again). This time COLLARS are sleek and minimalist...futuristic if you will. Designers from Louis Vuitton to Michael Kors paraded them down their fall runways paired with everything from suits to furs.

The key to rocking the collar is keeping the remainder of your look classic with clean lines and solid colors. For your everyday life, wear them with a modal long-sleeved T by Alexander Wang top or, for nighttime, spiff up a neutral toned dress with a shiny silver piece like Margherita Missoni. Either way, you'll look au current and decidedly dangereuse.

Margherita Missoni via Jewels by Juliet

ALC Brass Cuff via Shopbop

Dannijo for Vena Cava via Shopbop

Dannijo x Man Repeller Aram Necklace via Dannijo

As for the cuffs, the new way to rock them is in pairs. Clap them to the outside of your long-sleeved blouses and make sure you have one on each wrist a la Brooke Shields in the look below. Asymmetry just isn't what drives this trend home.

Getty via Life Goes Strong

Marni via Net-A-Porter

Philippe Audibert via Net-A-Porter

Dannijo via Net-A-Porter

My favorite piece also happens to be the most dramatic but still minimalist accessory I've found so far. This Anndra Neen choker looks elegant with a black tux jacket or edgy with a burgundy tee. But if the whole collar thing feels a little too intense, tone it down with a tubed necklace as seen at 3.1 Phillip Lim and below.

Anndra Neen Necklace via Shopbop

Hutton tubular necklace via Reiss

Don't worry that these accessories are a passing trend and you won't get much mileage out of them. Just last night, Donatella herself showed look after look with bold metallic, the Verace for H&M fashion show. So cuff (and collar?) 'em!