Sunday, July 31, 2011

I Like Music, Music Sounds Good.

Collecting cook books has become something of a hobby for me. There are a lot of weird and wonderful ones out there, and even if I'll never cook from some of them I still enjoy reading the recipes (the older volumes I've gotten from thrift stores, especially--it's like having a secret cadre of grandmothers whispering in your ear about their church bake sale secrets).

I recently found a cook book for $2 at a local vintage shop. It's titled "I Like Food, Food Tastes Good" and is a compilation of recipes by indie bands like Les Savy Fav, My Morning Jacket, Interpol, Grizzly Bear, Battles, RJD2... basically the recipe index looks like a Pitchfork list of must-listen-to bands. In true rock star style (the recipes are printed verbatim as the bands have submitted them), the instructions for most of these dishes are vague and/or laced with profanities... and in the case of Devandra Banhart's recipe for something called Africanitas Ricas, the last five lines of "instructions" seem to be pure gibberish.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

These Jeffrey Campbell Fox Tick’s are so drool-worthy, even though everyone and their grandma already has a pair of Tick booties.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Art In Motion

I’m one of those cretinous people who will spend more time in the museum gift shop than the actual museum itself.

In my defense, the world’s best museums often have the world’s best gift shops. The Museum of Modern Art, I’ll even venture to say, has a gift shop that outshines the actual museum itself (I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t really “get” modern art—two years ago I saw a video exhibit at MoMA that included a clip of bare breasted woman walking in a shallow pool filled with trash… I’m still losing sleep at night trying to decipher its meaning).

The Metropolitan Museum of Art gift shop has hands-down one of the best jewelry selections of any retailer, period. Since most of their designs are either direct copies of historical artifacts or inspired by a specific period, you would think the jewelry would feel dated or costume-y. On the contrary! A surprising number of the pieces have a cool, classic-contemporary vibe and can easily be mixed into a modern wardrobe.

1. Egyptian Princess Turquoise Necklace - $75.00 $56.25
2. Golden Fringe Earrings - $75.00
3. Parisian Art Nouveau Pendant Necklace - $110.00
4. Precolumbian Ornament Earrings - $85.00
5. Two-Tone Egyptian Knot Bangle Bracelet - $185.00
6. Art Nouveau Peacock Feather Bracelet - $265.00
7. Russian Imperial Enamel Ring - $63.75

(Not) For The Servantless American Cook

While Julia Child’s opus, Mastering the Art of French Cooking, has seen a healthy revival in interest thanks to Julie & Julia, the original bible of French cuisine remains under the mainstream radar.

Auguste Escoffier (1846-1935) was called “the King of Chefs and the Chef of Kings”. He refined French haute cuisine and virtually created the modern professional kitchen through the development of the brigade de cuisine system. His book, Le Guide de Culinaire, is a veritable encyclopedia of French cuisine—an absolutely invaluable source of haute cuisine protocol, how-to’s and of course, recipes.

Since Escoffier’s intended audience was other professional chefs and chefs-to-be, some of the recipes in Le Guide de Culinaire are difficult to execute in the home kitchen. Nonetheless, Escoffier’s masterpiece deserves a place on the shelves of any home cook who appreciates culinary history and restaurant technique. The new translation (available on Amazon for $44) has gone through a cosmetic revision as well. The chic black and white cover makes the book all the more covetable.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Summer Lovin'

When it’s sweltering outside, even looking at long loose hair on other girls makes me feel hot. Braids, ponytails and cute little chignons are a great way to keep you (and observant neurotics like moi) feeling cool and refreshed.

Easy-to-follow instructions and hairdo inspiration from the S/S 2011 runways! HERE.

Closet Confession

I’m at an odd crossroads in my life. At 18 I thought that in college I’d start investing in proper grown up things. Stuff that would make me look polished and sharp. People will respect me for my tasteful sartorial decisions! I thought.

More business casual, less drunk party girl.
Things didn’t exactly go according to plan. Almost six years later my closet still holds steadfast to ruffled, sequined things, with plenty of studded denim and short hems. Not to say that ruffly, sequin-y, studded short things don’t have a place in my life, but there is an unhealthy amount of frivolous pieces in my wardrobe that need to be balanced out. To start, I think a careful re-evaluation of my closet is in order…

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Shorts Story

It seems like at the end of every summer I get suckered into buying “staples” I don’t really need, all under the misconception that I’m somehow saving money.

Yes, it is SUMMER CLEARANCE season and recessionistas all over are advising you stock up now on strappy sandals and printed sundresses for the next summer. In theory, it’s not a bad idea—every summer calls for sandals and sundresses—but the sad fact is that the cute stuff I buy during clearance sales never get any play by the time next summer rolls around… The things I thought were cute last year have morphed into Bad Ideas, or worse, there are much cuter offerings this year that I have to buy.

This time I’m sticking to shorts Only. They can be enjoyed now, in the last dregs of summer, and can easily pull double-duty in the upcoming months: a shorts + tights combo can get you a lot of mileage in the fall.