Du Jour: Rainy Day Style

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0574

I officially have seasonal depression. And an unfortunate consequence of that is my entire loss of creativity in dressing myself. So I’m sorry for that. Yes, I did wear the gingham button-down and pleather leggings again, oops! I think the only {potentially dangerous} solution might have to be a little bit of retail therapy. Well, I’ll admit, I already started with these colorblocked beauties from ShoeMint in the red and pink… is it spring yet?

IMG_0571

IMG_0577

Buttondown – J.Crew Factory – Sweater – Ann Taylor Loft – Jacket – Eddie Bauer – Pleather Leggings – Hearts & Bows, from ASOS – Kicks – Vans – Headband – Anthropologie (Similar) – Bag – ALDO – Lips – Benefit On the Sly

Advertisements

Vogue, Foodies, and House of Cards

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

I’ve spent a good amount of my time over the past few days drooling at the thought of crunchy, texture-y, crispy foods. It’s funny how the second you tell me I have to subsist on soup, even though I sometimes go whole weeks of eating just that, it suddenly seems like the worst thing in the world. To divert my attention, I’ve been catching up on recent magazines, ogling food blogs, and watching numerous episodes of Netflix’s new series, House of Cards. As a DC gal with a journalism background, I just can’t get enough — deception, corruption, sex, politics, it’s all there!

A few of my favorite ad campaigns and trends from the {gigantic} recent issue of Vogue and a few of the most texture-laden recipes I’ve been eyeing…

IMG_0512{Woven Bag & Floral Embroidery}

IMG_0542{Floral Everywhere}

Magazines Lately 1{Vegetarian Lentil and Sweet Potato Empanadas, from Love & Olive Oil}

IMG_0525{Raffia from Vince Camuto}

Magazines Lately 2{Chickpea, Barley, and Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Mint and Feta, from The Kitchn}

IMG_0556{Give Me All of the Blue}

IMG_0537{A Delicate Waft of Silk from Hermes}

Magazines Lately 3{Warm Farro Salad with Roasted Vegetables and Fontina, from The Kitchn}

IMG_0546{A Touch of Mod in Monochrome}

IMG_0533{The Matching Suit in The Spring Print}

Magazines Lately 4{Homemade Samoas Girl Scout Cookies, from Just a Taste}

Have you guys seen House of Cards yet? What do you think?

Any soup recipe suggestions to sustain my liquid diet for a few more days?

Du Jour: Plain White Tee

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0500

I hate to say it, but this outfit was about as much as I could muster when I woke up Monday morning with the disheartening task of actually going to work. At least there’s nothing comfier than a good pair of ripped-up boyfriend jeans. I recently nabbed this pair from South Moon Under, but I’m obsessing over some of the slimmer-fitting versions and over-the-top baggy styles, too, perfect for early spring transitions.

IMG_0507

IMG_0504

Brooklyn Blonde

{Brooklyn Blonde}

Hat and Pumps

Neon

IMG_0498

Tee – Forever21 – Sweater – Splendid – Denim – Free People – Coat – Miss Sixty – Booties – Levity – Scarf – Knitted by Me – Sunglasses – Urban Outfitters

Du Jour: A Case of the Blues

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0478

Maybe it’s the dreary weather… or perhaps fashion forecasts like this one from the spring runways, but I’ve been gravitating toward various shades of cobalt and navy lately. And we know I’m not one to pass up the go-to of monochromatic dressing.

Royal Blue
From Style Bistro – Left to Right: Alice + Olivia, Milly, Herve Leger, Rebecca Taylor, J. Crew

IMG_0488

IMG_0492

IMG_0486

Graphic Top – Last Year’s Crafty Bastards – Sweater – J.Crew – Velvet Jacket – Anthropologie – Scarf – Forever21 – Skirt – Nordstrom (Similar) – Boots – Vince Camuto (Similar) – Bag – ALDO – Sunglasses – Vintage – Lips – Milani Rose Hip

What do you think of monochromatic dressing? What spring trend are you most looking forward to?

In Season: Salmon with Plum Glaze and Maple Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0268

I’ll be the first to say I become a bit of a hermit this time of year. Particularly at the beginning of the week, the biggest dates I have are with the treadmill or the grocery store. And yet, there’s nothing more therapeutic for my nerdy self than taking the time to make a fancy meal.

When I discuss said fancy meal with coworkers the next day, they say, ‘Oh, that sounds delicious, where’d you go?’ When I respond that I made it myself, they respond, ‘Oh that sounds delicious, did you have friends over for dinner?’ When I say no, they look at me blankly, confused as to why I would spend that much time on a meal for one… What can I say? I find it soothing, and this dinner round wasn’t even all that hard.

Oven-Roasted Salmon with Plum Glaze

Salmon Marinade
3/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon chopped rosemary
1 teaspoon chopped thyme
1/2 cup white wine
4 8-ounce salmon fillets

Combine first four ingredients in a medium bowl and whisk to combine. Put salmon fillets in a plastic bag and pour marinade over the salmon. Seal bags and marinade in the refrigerator for at least an hour. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 10 minutes or until it can be flecked with a fork.

Plum Glaze
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
2 ripe plums

In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine ingredients. Simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until plums have softened. Remove the mixture from heat, allow to cool slightly, and purée in a food processor. Pour glaze over salmon and serve immediately.

I prepared this meal for one — to break down the servings, I would suggest cooking the salmon fillets you’ll be ready to eat immediately. The rest of the salmon can remain in the marinade overnight if you’d like leftovers the next day — just pop out of the bag and cook a fresh serving.

IMG_0206

IMG_0216

IMG_0225

This was my first encounter with preparing Brussels sprouts myself, and I can safely say I’ve been converted. I’ve been shopping at Trader Joe’s more often, and I’m gradually adjusting to making my produce purchases according to what looks good, rather than coming into the store with recipes in mind — when it comes to Trader Joe’s, that approach almost always ends in heartbreak. What doesn’t end in heartbreak? Anything involving balsamic reduction. I could drink this stuff from the pan.

Maple Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts
2 pounds uncooked Brussels sprouts
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons maple syrup

Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Coat a large nonstick baking sheet with cooking spray. Slice Brussels sprouts in half. Toss with oil, salt, and pepper until evenly coated. Roast, stirring and rotating pan halfway through cooking, until cooked through and crisped up at the edges, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, combine vinegar, maple syrup and a dash of extra salt in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Boil, stirring frequently, until thick and syrupy, about 3 to 5 minutes. Spoon Brussels sprouts into a serving dish and drizzle with syrup just before serving.

IMG_0186

IMG_0194

IMG_0241

IMG_0251

IMG_0265

Have you tried preparing Brussels sprouts before? Do you go in to Trader Joe’s looking for some sort of vegetable and come out with Brie and fancy crackers? Gets me every time…

A Dose of Reflection

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

mary anne rodmacher(From iiinspired)

Today, I’m getting my wisdom teeth out. Why I’m having this surgery at age 24 rather than age 18 I couldn’t really tell you, but these unfortunate circumstances had me thinking… I’ve always been one to just sort of barrel through life and figure it out as I go along. My dentist told me I should get my wisdom teeth out eventually and I basically ignored him, going about my business, until an infection added a sense of urgency. In the same way, I’ve kind of been approaching this blog with a devil-may-care attitude, changing things as I go along, not really doing my homework on best practices, trying things out that I hate, trying things out that I love but then don’t have the energy to maintain.

In reflecting on this experience thus far (it’s only been about six months, after all), I can definitely say I’ve experienced some of the frustrations that come with not consulting with someone on how this blogging works.

Exhibit A — I had no idea how drastic the distinction between WordPress.com and WordPress.org was. This might sound like gibberish to non-bloggers, but I’m basically having a life crisis over how many freedoms I do or do not have with this site, and I should probably have just payed someone to tell me in the first place to save myself time and energy.

If nothing else, this is just me saying I’m going to take a little step back and figure out what I want out of this experience. I’ve drawn wonderful inspiration from fellow bloggers who are much farther along in their journeys than I — namely Joy the Baker on this occasion and this one and The Now Stylebook here.

I started this blog as a creative outlet and a way to chronicle the things that make me tick. But life gets in the way, and a full-time job gets in the way, and I’ve neglected my corner of the Internet a bit. So in addition to aspirations for dressing up my design and making navigation more clear, I’m hoping to work through what I want this blog to reflect. And how. I’m really not an exclusively clothes person… or an exclusively food person. And I really love interior design. And art. Stay tuned to see where we’ll go next…

dreams

(From the black hole that is Pinterest)

To make good on one of my first goals to make this a more inclusive atmosphere, I’d love to hear what you all have to say.

Comment away, tell me what you do or don’t like, tell me what you’d like to see, post tips or suggestions, I’m all ears!

Valentine’s Day Cookies!

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

If you forgot to get your honey something special for Valentine’s Day… or you hate your former special someone and want to eat your feelings… or you just really want to enjoy something sweet for goodness sake, these are the cookies for you.

IMG_0369

For as long as I can remember, I have coveted the Nestlé Toll House chocolate chip cookie recipe above all other cookie recipes. I know it’s nothing special, but I still have yet to beat it, no matter how many fancy extracts or flours or butter-to-applesauce ratios I try. Call me uninspired, but I actually have memories of making these cookies that mirror the ads Nestlé screens on TV — damn it advertising, got me again. The one thing that can make these suckers better, though: seasonally inspired M&M’s.

Nestlé Toll House Chocolate Chip Cookies with Valentine’s Day M&M’s

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 12-ounce bag M&M’s, roughly chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in M&M’s. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 9 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Give to the one(s) you love or eat all of them yourself.

IMG_0313

IMG_0322

IMG_0349

IMG_0356

IMG_0380

What sweet treats are you guys whipping up for Valentine’s Day?

Du Jour: Ruby Confetti

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0275

In the spirit of Valentine’s Day’s approach, I give you red sequins. Styling this top is definitely a challenge I don’t take up often, but I do love dressing down an otherwise glimmering night-out top. Really styling anything red and/or pink tends to throw me a little, but if only for a few days, I’ll give it a go. I also finally got around to a few long-awaited Christmas exchanges, earning me these perfectly distressed Free People jeans and these Keds-esque Vans sneaks, which are as comfortable as they look.

IMG_0296

IMG_0282

IMG_0289

IMG_0290

IMG_0294

IMG_0287

Top – Lucca Couture – Blazer – J.Crew – Jeans – Free People – Kicks – Vans – Stole – H&M – Sunglasses – Vintage – Earrings – Anthropologie – Bag – ALDO

Du Jour: 50 Shades of Pink

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0164

I’m usually not one for much pink — I think it’s the blonde hair and my aversion to appearing remotely Barbie-like — but this rose-hued silk top had me instantly besotted. It may just be the timeless class of all silk buttondowns, but this pale hue is the perfect foil for an otherwise dark ensemble. It must be the Valentine’s Day spirit…

In other news, I finally got a much-needed haircut and color touchup. My natural curls start to get really weighed down and scraggly as my unstoppable strands continue to grow, so this shorter-than-usual cut was a necessary change. I also recently ordered the Remington Pearl Ceramic Curling Wand, and I’m so looking forward to dressing up my curls a little more than I usually do. Shorter hair=quicker styling time!

IMG_0167

IMG_0176

IMG_0170

And Happy Mardi Gras!

image (2)

IMG_0172

Silk Buttondown – Madewell – Jeans – Cheap Monday – Boots – Simply Vera Vera Wang – Coat – Miss Sixty – Scarf – Gifted – Lips – Revlon Fire & Ice

In Season: Brown Butter Rosemary Orange Cornbread

Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

IMG_0115

I know, I know, copying recipes directly from fellow food bloggers does not a chef make. But the second I saw Joy the Baker‘s rendition of cornbread last week, I knew I had to recreate it as soon as physically possible. There is little difference between my and her versions, but I still felt the need to share the deliciousness. You’ll even see that I completely forgot to photograph any adorable little wedges of the cornbread draped in melty butter or drizzly honey, because the moment this cornbread was cut out of the dish, I just couldn’t seem to stop eating it long enough to photograph it. Sorry.

I’ll also mention that the reason I had rosemary and orange on hand in the first place was because of this recipe — Orange-Rosemary-Glazed Salmon. Simple, bright, and delicate, this easy preparation comes highly recommended by my taste buds.

Brown Butter Rosemary Orange Cornbread

1 stick plus 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 large eggs
1 cup milk
2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup ground cornmeal
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary

Place a rack in the upper third of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and 8×8-inch square baking pan. Line with parchment paper and grease and flour the baking pan. Set aside.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium-low heat. Melt and cook butter down completely, stirring carefully until it turns a golden brown. You’ll see brown bits start to form at the bottom of the pan. Remove immediately and cool in the fridge.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, orange juice, and browned butter. Set aside.

In a large bowl, blend together sugar, orange zest, and chopped rosemary. Blend with the back of a spoon working the orange and rosemary flavors into the sugar.

Add flour, cornmeal, salt, and baking soda to the large bowl with the flavored sugar. Whisk to combine.

Add the wet ingredients all at once to the dry ingredients. Stir until just incorporated. Pour batter into prepared pan and smooth to the edges. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.

IMG_0052

IMG_0068

IMG_0082

IMG_0091

IMG_0098

Enjoy!