19 september 2014

{the plaza hotel, nyc} via chevrons & éclairs
{the plaza hotel, nyc} via chevrons & éclairs
{the plaza hotel, nyc} via chevrons & éclairs
{the plaza hotel, nyc} via chevrons & éclairs
{the plaza hotel, nyc} via chevrons & éclairs
{the plaza hotel, nyc} via chevrons & éclairs

I think you should be
serious about what you do
because this is it.

* * *

♫♪ Laura Mvula – Little Girl Blue

It’s crazy how this transition onto London has brought so many opportunities to my fingertips, those that I could never fathom. Sometimes the slightest challenges brings you pure happiness as everything just… simply connects. What started as a side project in my 600 square foot studio apartment in Washington, DC and then continued with me throughout the years as a reason to search for that marriage between creative discovery and analytical intellect has finally produced into something that I am utterly proud of. Helped me find peace. It’s like watching your baby grow from rolling over, to crawling, to walking.

I was that little girl that grew up getting bullied for being chubby and not blonde hair and blue-eyed like everyone else at school. I was that little girl that was the “new girl” and was introduced to a group of girls that made assimilating extremely difficult. I was that little girl that grew so much over the summer, which made it difficult to place me in dances and performances. Simply put, I felt as if I didn’t belong anywhere. I was thirsty for something artistic in my life and I was being limited by people. This continued through grade school and into college and then finally I created this blog as my safe haven. My virtual tree house where I painted my own strokes on an empty canvas.

This tree house that I would climb up into and cover up in a duvet and string together impossibly beautiful images and words together has transformed into a lifestyle. A place for the brightest and smartest men and women to converge and share exceptional experiences and adventures. A place for us to indulge in the beauty of life, and I brag that I have the greatest of followers because they have become friends, family.

As many of you know, and some of you I met, I was quite busy with London Fashion Week the last several days. The realization that set in after fashion week is what prompted me to share this bit about me. As I sat in my last show and watched the models walk down the runway one last time, I teared up. I did it. I faced what was years of torment and felt like a forced divorce from all things beauty and artistic. I am now sitting in fashion shows and visiting presentations and meeting with designers who know me by name. And the cherry on top was that moment when a style journalist told me, “you brought depth, through intelligence, to the fashion community. Thank you.”

…I think I found where I belong in the world and that was never on the sidelines, but in the forefront.

* * *

jamie’s five faves from Prabal Gurung

…and Tadashi Shoji

what would your fashion blogger name be?

15 must-see films

transitioning into fall

casual style for the weekend

homemade pumpkin spice latte

a tomato soup re-done

four year old reviews the French Laundry

a visit to my favorite piece of Paris in NYC

do-it-yourself gin bar

* * *

{photographs of The Plaza Hotel, NYC by chevrons & éclairs}

balthazar, nyc

{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs

Among the busy streets of NYC leading up to Little Italy and not too far off from Soho and after hours and hours of walking and window shopping, I came across this little bakery sitting alongside it’s mother that is the Balthazar restaurant. Perfectly quaint, and what feels like a little slice of France among the concrete catwalk. Windows adorned with the most delectable and moist cakes. And as you walk in, the little passing cafe is perfumed with warm, fresh bread. It’s the perfect oasis for one who wants to indulge or needs a quick cuppa coffee on the way through the rest of the neighborhood.

{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs
{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs
{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs
{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs
{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs
{Balthazar in NYC} via chevrons & éclairs

{balthazar}

80 spring street
new york, new york 10012
212 . 965 . 1414

red lentil-tomato soup with saffron-white truffle oil

{red lentil-tomato soup with saffron-white truffle oil}{red lentil-tomato soup with saffron-white truffle oil}

I was always one of those kids back in grade school with gourmet lunches. Sandwiches that were layers of fresh vegetables and herbs and homemade mayonnaise. The one that would have immaculate fresh fruit salads. Sometimes homemade bread or leftover pasta dinner. Silly me, I would sometimes want to trade lunches with others {and I actually did, sorry mummy!}. But there was one thing that I never gave up. Every Wednesday, my school offered grilled cheese and as an indulgence {because my parents never believed in buying school lunch} my mother would give me $1.10 to get a grilled cheese to accompany my thermos full of red lentil-tomato soup. I’m not sure why I loved the soup so much, considering it was as “gourmet” as my other meals. I guess it’s because it was the one time my parents did let me eat like the “normal” kids.

* * *
14157965522_f8d5261a85_oClick on the image to enlarge the recipe.
Print on a 3 x 5 index card setting and store with the rest of your recipes.
For more recipe, visit the recipe index here!

transitioning into fall

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It seems like not too long ago we were at summer weddings and in nautical inspired suits and knitted ties with anchor emblem. But with August behind us and as we are well into September, I couldn’t help but feel a bit of nostalgia. To remedy that, I decided to curate an autumn visual diary…

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fjallraven

Kanken Backpack – Fjallraven Canada Classic St. Andrews Watch – Daniel Wellington | Vegan Seude Wrapped Flask | Dress Belt – Cole Hann Sunglasses – Ray Ban | Blue Button-Down Shirt

make your own gin bar

{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs

I do find it a shame that many of my friends, who inspire me daily, don’t have blogs. Though I’m glad c&é is a place we can all come together. When my friend Sarah reached out to me not too long ago, she mentioned she was putting together a gin bar for her boyfriend. Obviously, with my love affair with gin, and is quite prominent here on c&é, I was intrigued. So today I have Sarah sharing her DIY gin bar for her ever-so-lovely boyfriend. And be sure to scroll all the down as you will be in for a treat as I share a few of my favorite gin cocktails.

{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs
{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs

{you will need}

antique medical cart
steel wool
painter’s tape
primer
spray paint

{and to decorate}

drinking glasses
fun, festive fabric
vase for flowers or straws
chessboard of choice, gold used here

{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs
{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs
{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs

{instructions}

1. clean brass surface with warm water and cloth. For any rust spots, lightly use steel wool to buff the marks.
2. let the brass dry over some hours, and then use a primer to prep the metal. The primer doesn’t have to be anti rust, but mine was. Primer usually gives it a funky color, but don’t worry. I gave mine two coats over the course of two weeks (letting completely dry each time).
3. cover areas you don’t want painted (the wheels for me), and thoroughly spray paint. I chose a high shine metallic spray paint to make it shiny looking. I put three coats of paint for the final spray.
Tip. Be sure to spray paint outdoors and wear gloves when working on the staining.

{DIY gin bar} via chevrons & éclairs

{c&é’s favorite gin cocktails}

citrus-rosemary gin cocktail
five twists on the gimlet
early grey infused
gin thyme lemonade
elderflower gin fizz