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Top 5 Festival Looks for 2014

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Hey everyone! Sorry for taking such a long hiatus! I have been swamped with school work and other things at work and sort of neglected my blog 😦 But I’m back in action!

Coachella kicked off their first weekend last week and that sparked the idea to do a feature post on my top 5 festival looks for 2014!

Look #1 Boho.

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Look #2 Print on Print

Print on Print

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Look #3 Brights

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Look #4 Black and White

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Look #5

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Click the image to be taken to my Polyvore for more info on the products!

Short and sweet! I have family over for Easter weekend so I need to get back to the party! Have a great long weekend everyone!

 

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Looks for Less

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Last week a girlfriend and I spent the day downtown window shopping and whatnot in Kensington Market and along Queen Street. We made our way east and ended up at the bustling Eaton Centre. That’s where I got my inspiration for today’s post: find 3 high end looks and recreate them for less!

Our first stop was BCBG. I figured this would be a great spot to find a formal look. Funny enough, this is where I found the perfect casual look. I recreated this look at H&M for about 80% less!

Left: BCBG  Right: H&M

Left: BCBG
Right: H&M

Next stop was Club Monaco for business attire. I recreated this look at H&M for about 85% less! (Ps, I am LOVING Dalmatian print)

Left: Club Monaco Right: H&M

Left: Club Monaco
Right: H&M

And for the final look, I went with the ever trendy jumpsuit. Mendocino had a subtly sexy caged front, low back jumpsuit while H&M’s version – plunging v-neck – was a little more va-va-voom! And let’s not forget it’s about 76% less.

Left: Mendocino Right: H&M

Left: Mendocino
Right: H&M

I don’t know about you, but when I score a great find for less it gives me a bit of a rush! What’s your favourite look?

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Pantone Colour of the Year

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The Pantone colour of the year for 2014 is…Radiant Orchid! I have created 3 different ways to incorporate the hue into your life with the help of Polyvore!

Radiant Orchid’s rosy undertones literally radiate on the skin, giving off the appearance of a health glow when worn as a garment. This colour sure knows how to grab attention appearing on several spring 2014 runways from designers such as Max Mara, Marc Jacobs, and Salvatore Ferragamo. Here are a few examples of how you can incorporate Radiant Orchid into your wardrobe.

Click the photo for more information about the products above!

Click the photo for more information about the products above!

Not feeling bold enough to sport it in your wardrobe? Why not try one of these beauty products instead. This surprising versatile shade is flattering on all skin types and lends feelings of health and energy to all who wear it! It adds a great punch of colour to nails as well.

Click the photo for more information about the products above!

Click the photo for more information about the products above!

And last but certainly not least, why not spruce up your space by incorporating this stunning colour paint, furniture, appliances or textiles! This shade pairs well with olive and hunter greens, or if you’re feeling extra bold, try it with turquoise or light yellow!

Click the photo for more information about the products above!

Click the photo for more information about the products above!

My favourites are intimates, a pop of colour on the lips and of course that gorgeous Kitchenaid stand mixer! What’s your favourite?

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Happy Macaron Day!

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Yesterday, March 20th marked the first day of spring and that is definitely something we are all looking forward to. Yesterday was also World Macaron Day and – in my opinion – was equally as exciting.

IMG_1641Macaron Day was started in Paris by the famous bakery Pierre Hermé. The idea behind it was to get people into the bakery to try macarons and give to charity at the same time. The concept has now spread from New York to Tokyo to Toronto!

Here in Toronto, 18 bakeries are participating in the event. Each person who walks into a participating bakery simply has to say they’re here to celebrate Macaron Day and they are given a free macaron of their choice. 25% of each additional macaron purchased goes to the Red Door Family Shelter – an organization dedicated to helping families who are struggling get back to stable living.

I checked out Pâtisserie 27 in Bloor West Village and picked up one coffee and one raspberry macaron. They were delicious!

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I had picked up a copy of Martha Stewart Living last month and they had a whole spread of different macaron recipes. The front cover was so pretty that it persuaded me to try and make them at home. They are so smooth and delicate I had always figured they were difficult to make but I figured as Martha as my guide, why not?

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Here’s what you need:

  • 2/3 cup sliced blanched almonds (71 grams)
  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar (117 grams)
  • 2 large egg whites, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (53 grams)
  • 1/4 teaspoon rose water
  • 3 drops rose-pink gel-paste food coloring

Filling:

  • 1/2 cup raspberry jam (with seeds)

1. First thing you’re going to want to do is preheat your oven to 350°. Then put your almonds in a food processor or blender and pulse until as fine as possible, about 1 minute. Add the icing sugar and blend until combined, about 1 more minute.

2. Pour almond mixture through a fine-mesh sieve. If you still have bigger solid pieces left over toss those back in the blender and then press them through the sieve again. Repeat until you have less than 2 TBSP of solids remaining.

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3. Whisk the egg whites and table sugar to combine. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Increase speed to med-high and beat 2 minutes. Beat on high for 2 minutes more.

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4. The egg whites will hold stiff, glossy peaks when you lift the whisk out of the bowl. They shouldn’t droop or drip at all. Now add the rose water and food colouring and beat on highest speed for 30 seconds to combine.

5. Add the dry ingredients all at once. Fold with a spatula from the bottom of the bowl upwards, then press flat side of spatula through middle of mixture. Repeat until batter flows like lava, about 35-40 complete strokes.

6. Fill a pastry bag (or a Ziploc) with batter and secure the top by twisting it. Dab some batter from the bowl and use it to secure the corners of a sheet of parchment paper on a cookie sheet.

7. With tip of bag about a ½ inch above the sheet, pipe batter into ¾ rounds, then swirl tip off to one side. Repeat, spacing rounds 1” apart. Tap sheets firmly against counter 2-3 times to get rid of any air bubbles.

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8. Bake 1 sheet at a time, rotating halfway through, until risen and just set, about 13 minutes. Let cool.

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9. Pipe or spread filling on flat sides of half of cookies, then top with remaining half. Wrap in plastic or put them in a Ziploc and refrigerate. They taste best after an hour of refrigeration.

macarons

Enjoy! 🙂

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Click here for full recipe:

http://www.marthastewart.com/1054197/rose-raspberry-macarons

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Snow Day

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     So as I’m sure many of us would like to forget, we received quite the dumping of snow here in Toronto. A girlfriend of mine and I had the day off school so we figured we would make the most of a day off and head down to Queen West.

We got off the streetcar and Queen and Roncesvalles and decided to venture through the vintage shops. At first I thought, This is great! There’s no one out we have all the shops to ourselves! I quickly figured out why…

We walked MAYBE 3 blocks before we gave up. The snow and wind were quite violent so it was extremely cold and extremely unpleasant. Walking 3 blocks had really worked up our appetite, so we burst through the doors of the first open establishment. Sufficed to say, we were pleasantly surprised.

We ended up at Kitten & the Bear, a confiturier and café. The quaint storefront had an IMG_1489understated elegance. Chandeliers hung from the ceiling and rustic, knotty pine wainscoting crept up the whitewashed walls. There was a wall of tea and preserves that almost touched the ceiling, and the smell of freshly baked scones filled the air. We were in heaven.

Sophie, the petite, bubbly co-owner of the shop greeted us promptly. She declared we were brave to be out and about on a day like today and that a pot of tea would do us good. I wasn’t going to argue with that. We decided to try the “Jam Sampling” – 2 fluffy scone, a pot of Sloane Mint Chocolate black tea, Devonshire clotted cream and 3 jam samples of our choosing. We chose Meyer Lemon & Lavender, Red Cherry, Kumquat & Sloane’s Chai Tea, and Sweet Orange, Burnt Honey and Vanilla Bean for our samples. All for just $10. Amazing.

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IMG_1498We took a seat at the (only) tiny little table because two ladies had already claimed the comfy window seat. There was really only room for the 4 of us to be in there at one time. The scones were perfectly baked – flakey on the outside, soft on the inside. The jams were amazing as well. They make their preserves in small batches, only 6 flavours at a time. Using French confiture style, they are made in traditional hand-hammered copper preserving pans. The ingredients are inspired by what is seasonal and local. They also offer pour-over coffee by local brewers, Pig Iron Coffee Roasters.

 This would be the perfect place to take your mom for a special occasion or to catch up with a girlfriend. I will definitely be back soon and I have recommended them to everyone I see!

Check out their Facebook page below for more information!

https://www.facebook.com/KittenAndTheBearIMG_1501