Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Déjà Vogue: Purrr...

--> Halloween is here and we are inspired by miss Julie Newmar as Catwoman. Why not get an outfit you can prowl through the night in after the costume party. Meow.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Celebrating Halloween - A way to join in the fun of the season!

It is great fun to carve some pumpkins and decorate your home to feel a part of the community and festivities on Halloween night.  Carving pumpkins invites trick or treaters to come to your home.  It is a magical holiday suited for the change of seasons.

I carve my pumpkins with traditional designs from my childhood.  I clean the pumpkins and reserve the seeds to be slow roasted in a pan drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and sea salt. (See recipe below.)  They are our favorite Halloween snack, along with a good glass of Italian red wine, lentil soup, and copious amounts of KitKats.

The tradition of carving pumpkins is an old American tradition but one that has its roots in ancient origins. It is widely believed that many Halloween traditions have evolved from an ancient Celtic festival. This festival is said to have been a celebration of the end of the harvest, and a time of preparation for the coming winter.

So on Halloween night, remember to always answer the door for trick or treaters, have plenty of candy, and keep the pumpkins lit until the last trick or treater arrives!

Raw pumpkin seeds, from a jack-o’-lantern

Extra-virgin olive oil

Fine sea salt

Put the pumpkin seeds in a colander and rinse and use your hands to remove all the orange pulp form the seeds. The seeds will be very slippery.

Lightly coat a baking sheet with oil.  Spread the pumpkin seeds out on the baking sheet and toss to coat them with oil.  The seeds should not be floating in oil, just covered lightly.

Season the seeds generously with salt.

Bake for 2 to 3 hours, until golden brown, turning them occasionally so that they brown evenly.  The seeds should roast very slowly. Remove from the oven and taste for salt. If needed, add another sprinkling of sea salt. Let cool completely, then store in an airtight container.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Tabletop Props: An impromptu dinner party

Sometimes all you need is a laid-back, fun night with your girlfriends. If time is short, there's no need to worry! One of our favorite ways to throw an impromptu dinner party is to make a quick stop at your local farmers market. They will almost always have everything you need to put together a customized, local, healthy meal. Plus, becoming a regular at the market is a great way to get involved with your community and support the local vendors. Here are some items that are repeatedly on our shopping list:

Fruit: You can't beat Fall's fruit selection. Markets offer a multitude of grapes, pears, apples, and more. They go well with most other finger foods and are great palette cleansers!

Cheese: Exploring the flavors of local cheese companies is a great way to learn about the varieties of different cheeses. Try a different kind every time!

Mixed nuts: Here in the Northwest, we are in a prime location for nuts (especially hazelnuts!). Most nut vendors will offer many varieties including roasted, smoky, and flavored kinds.

Beverages: Support your local brewers by purchasing a growler of craft beer or even hard cider! Most vendors at the market will have an option to purchase a refillable bottle or growler that you can then bring back for a refill at your convenience.

Seasonal decorations: No matter what the season, farmers markets offer wonderful ways to decorate your home with local foliage and hand-crafted artisan decor. For our fall table decorations we like mini white pumpkins and of course a gorgeous, bountiful bouquet!

Top it all off with some fabulous serving pieces and your girls night is ready to begin!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Table Wear: Luxe Moderne

Last month we paired our Luxe Modern collection with a stunning gold and white room, and this week we're going all out glitter/sequin fest. We paired this amazing sequined gown (!) with some simple yet sexy accessories and a vintage deco-style cigarette case - these cases are easy to find on Ebay, Etsy or your local antique stores and are great for stashing a few bills and your ID to tuck into your evening clutch. 

Be sure to tell Mr. Gatsby we said hello.

Dress | Shoes Scarf | Earrings | Clutch 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Déjà Vogue: These boots were made for walking...

We are channeling some style tips from miss Nancy Sinatra. Grab a pair of boots to prepare for the fall chill. Are ya ready boots? Start walking!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Tabletop Props: Farmhouse Pantry

Farmhouse Pantry is our inspiration for this week's Tabletop Props! Reminiscent of old-fashioned American milk glass, these pantry staples celebrate farm-to-table tradition in simple, beautiful shapes. We love how the smell of freshly baked goods can transform the ambiance of a room and here you'll find Rosanna's heavenly biscuit recipe along with our idea of a cozy space to enjoy them in! We hope you enjoy these perfectly fluffy delights in the space where you feel most comfy. Bon appétit!