Thursday, July 31, 2008

Food For Thought Thursdays: Pear, Gorgonzola and Pecan Salad

I live in the south and anyone who lives here knows in July, particularly late July, it's just too hot to cook (unless you're outside, grilling). With that in mind, a light and fresh Pear Salad. Now, mangia!
Pear, Gorgonzola and Pecan salad
with Lemon Basil Vinaigrette

For salad:
Salad greens of your choice
Pears, washed, sliced in half and cored
Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

For dressing*:
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon honey
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt to taste
* This makes enough dressing for about 2-3 salads depending on personal taste and the size of the salads.
1. In a small bowl, mix together lemon and honey until honey is dissolved.

2. Stir in vinegar, then oil, and adjust for salt and other ingredients.

3. If making individual salad plates (recommended), assemble as shown in the photos with pear sliced in half lengthwise and cored placed in the middle of the plate–or any way you like really. It’s your salad!

4. Be sure to brush the pear slices/halves with lemon juice so they don’t brown before serving.

5. I would also recommend serving the dressing on the side at the table but that’s personal preference. If you’re adding it to the plates, serve immediately so things don’t get soggy.
*Recipe courtesy of Bleeding Espresso

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Sending Out An SOS

If anyone can identify this fabric and where it can be obtained, you will have an eternally grateful planner on your hands! I've seen it used to wrap bouquets as it does in the picture but also cover boxes and candleholders as well. It would be perfect for an upcoming project. You can either shoot me an email or leave a comment. Thanks!
Photo and florals courtesy of Enchanted Florist

Is Your Passport Ready?

I am an avid watcher of the Travel Channel, particularly Anthony Bourdain, but my absolute fav is Samantha Brown. I've been keeping up with Sam for a few years now and she always finds the best spots to check out in any given city. Ironically, yesterday's show was on Lisbon! Great minds, huh? If you haven't tuned in before, definitely check it out. Sam will not disappoint, I promise. Who knows, it may change your mind on where to spend your honeymoon, family vacay or that girls getaway you've been planning.

ps Thanks to Rebecca for the signature post!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Discovering The Z

It all started with my move to a new apartment. Since I was making a new start, I wanted a new environment as well. Keeping some of the old things but making room for the new and fabulous. With that in mind, I reached out to my cyber friend and fab interior designer Franki, who put me on to Z Gallerie. People...I am hooked on this store!
These safari lanterns are perfect for a wild night of partying (sorry, I couldn't resist)!
I love this stylish Gatsby storage cube. Great for hiding secrets.
I am so loving this Barcelona's bold and glam...exciting tabletop!
I still can't believe these pillar holders are made of wire.
This Leslie bed is so glamorous, I can barely contain myself.
These orange and brown vases are gorgeous. I believe only the brown and clear remain.
Is it just me or are the boxes even better than the candles?!
I want to make a table linen out of this curtain!
This Cassina silk bedding is incredible! I love these colors.
I MUST have these capiz bowls!
I love this bedding for a man's room. Very virile and strong looking.
See how perfectly these beaded placemats go with the lanterns?

Friday, July 25, 2008

Friday's Escape: Lisbon, City of the Seven Hills

Lisbon has been on my travel wish list for quite some time. A beautiful mix of old world charm and modernity, Lisbon has something for history buffs and those seeking a cosmopolitan European city. Read more about this rich city here. One of the city's finest hotels, Pestana Palace, is a national monument and has been beautifully restored. The perfect respite after a day spent exploring and fit for a queen! Happy weekend!
Torre De Belim
Sculptures and The Sea
Rua Garrett
Eduardo VII Park
Hotel Pestana Palace

Room For Everyone

I came across this World Bride Magazine today and I just had to share it with you. I think the tag line says it all: "Welcome to World Bride Magazine, the newest face in bridal magazines, serving brides of color and couples representing a fusion of different cultures, religions, races, and ethnicities." Can't wait for my next issue!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Food For Thought Thursday: Yucatecan Grilled Mahi-Mahi

I saw this picture of Lisa's finished recipe and was immediately drawn to the colors. The Mahi-Mahi is so vibrant! I bet it tastes as good as it looks. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Today Was A Good Day

Dear Readers, you know those days when everything just falls into place and you're clicking on every level possible? Well today was one of those days for yours truly! I mentioned yesterday that I was working on a design project and was totally psyched about it. We had a tabletop shoot for Grace Ormonde magazine and it turned out great! I am so excited and can't wait to show you the images captured by my fav shooter, the fabulous Jamie Parker! Jamie did such an awesome job! So could not have pulled today off without her. I'd also like to thank the vendors who contributed their time and efforts to make today a success as well. Shari and her team at Flowers Make Scents here in Richmond. The florals they created were unbelievable! If you're looking for a florist, definitely give those guys a call. The incredible linens courtesy of Mosaic really breathed life into my ideas. Thanks again, Susie. Also Laura at The Bankuet Place for allowing us to commandeer your space for the day.

I can't wait to hear what the editors at the magazine have to say. Wish us luck!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

A Little Sparkle & Shine

Inspiration can be found everywhere, any great designer will tell you as much. All you need to do is be open to it. And trust me when I say, it will strike when you least expect it. Just be sure to have a pen and paper or your camera at the ready. I spend quite a bit of time on my computer (in case you hadn't noticed) and when I come across a picture I like, I always save it. ALWAYS! You never know when it will come in handy. Case in point, today's post. I do love pretty things and nothing will catch my eye faster than something that sparkles and shines.
I really like this dress by Mon Cheri. It has movement and the glamour is a bit subdued for when you want to "wow" but not overpower.
Now you may see this Betsy Johnson dress and think, wait a minute Dawn...this is another black cocktail dress. You're absolutely right, but the difference is in the cut and the way in which the paillettes are used. Totally different effect; very young, hip and a bit of a rock and roll edge.
What I love about this Easton Pearson top is that it's totally wearable during the day. Pair it with slim cut white pants and strappy sandals and you're good to go!
I don't ask for much, my lovelies, but if you ever come across these Christian Louboutins in the flesh, you MUST purchase them, no questions asked. Deal? Do you see how tightly those sequins are sewn together? Craftsmanship, people.
This Burberry top is so fun!
Atil Kutoglu's cocktail dresses remind me of hot summer nights and Caribbean seas.

Now you may be asking yourself, how do the shoes and the dresses help with my wedding/cocktail party/etc. etc? What we're talking about is inspiration, my dear readers. You take something that sparks your imagination and you tweak it to fit the look and feel of your fete. Take for instance these chair covers from Mosaic. I adore them so much I'm using them for the design project I'm currently working on. See that? A little sparkle & shine.

And these little beauties I designed myself! I can't wait to use them on my next tablescape.


Monday, July 21, 2008

In Awe

Make no mistake about it, voluminous gowns are not my taste. I like them simply chic and short, but this Anjolique gown is beautiful. When I look at the detailing, I think of the seamstress who ensured each and every pleat and ruffle was perfect. Some may balk at the high price, but quality is worth every penny.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Friday's Escape: Villa D'Este

One of the bonuses of being on holiday is the ability to let the day carry you where it will. There are no schedules to adhere to, no emails or calls that demand your immediate attention, no clients and best of all, no bosses wondering if you're going to meet that looming deadline. In other words, sheer bliss. Though I've yet to visit, Villa D'Este in Lake Como, Italy strikes me as the perfect place for a relaxing time. Imagine spending your days watching the lake shimmer from your suite's balcony...well what are you waiting for? And if you're lucky you might bump into George Clooney at the market! Now that alone is worth the trip. Happy Weekend.
Simply gorgeous!
Suite's sitting room
Imagine taking your morning tea with this view. Heaven!
The sun deck

Dining alfresco overlooking the lake
Look at this breath-taking view...ready to go?
The hotel's famous gardens
You could even take a little jaunt before lunch.
Josephine Baker was a regular visitor.
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