Monday, December 30, 2013

My festive table


The Holidays are over for many of you and I hope you had a great Christmas Day and looking forward to the New Year. I'm definitely ready. Today I want to show you the super simple and all white table we had at home on Christmas Day. I took out all my stemware from storage, the fun Dali inspired plates and linen tablecloth and napkins and got tot set a super simple table with silver elements. 
I wasn't planning on sharing here on the blog, so excuse the COMPLETE lack of any kind of styling and bare images. What is your ideal festive table set? Do you use the traditional colours or maybe you go for a more silver or gold theme? I would love to see your own Christmas set up, if you have a link please do share on the comments for me and everyone to see!



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Monday, December 23, 2013

Make it: Coconut Trees

Sugar coated coconut trees

Happy Christmas week all! I hope you are all bundled in and ready to celebrate (or not, whatever floats your boat!). I will be taking this week off not because I'm going to go all crazy celebrating but because I want to sit down and take a bit of down time. Happy holidays friends, it has been a pleasure having you as guests here in this little ol' blog.

But before I go I want to share this is a little perfect Christmas treat. If you like coconut, don't wait, grab your 4 ingredients and make it because these little sugar dusted coconut trees by the one and only Martha are pure pleasure. They don't require much time or effort and the ingredients are minimal and the end result is super cute. 

Printable recipe here

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Ingredients

2 1/2 cups shredded coconut
3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 large egg whites, slightly beaten
5 tsp pure vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Confectioner's sugar for dusting

Sugar coated coconut trees

Instructions

Preheat oven to 170ºC (350º F) and line your baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside. 
 Beat your egg whites lightly and add the vanilla extract. 
In a large bowl combine coconut, sugar, salt, eggs and vanilla and mix nicely using your hands or a wooden spoon (I think the easiest is to use your hands so that everything gets super nicely mixed). 
Form with your hand little pointed trees (about 2 tsps each) and place in your baking sheet , spacing them 1 inch apart. 

bake in the hot oven for 12-15 minutes until the edges are golden and the trees are firm enough to handle. Let them cool on a wire for at least 15 minutes.

Dust them with sugar just before serving them.

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Printable recipe here

Happy Holidays friends! Enjoy the festivities! 

Friday, December 20, 2013

A walk around Montmartre


A couple of weeks ago, back when I was in Paris, and when my friends had departed bright and early for work, I got ready, crossed the street and made my way to Sacre Coeur. 
I walked my way to these lovely stairs in Montmartre which where to take me straight to the feet of the incredible church that oversees Paris. And indeed it was a short way. The views are magnifique as french would say, and I was lucky to catch a beautiful day too which was an added bonus. I didn't go to Montmartre until my second trip to the City of Lights and now I see what a must it is, don't miss it if you can, I haven't been inside Sacre Coeur but the exterior is just as stunning and imposing as you can imagine.



All Photos by A Diary of Lovely

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Ideal Closet


Well this my friends is a proper Ideal Closet, why? Because that lovely skirt (that some of you might consider equal to a curtain but fear not, it isn't!) is way way above what most of us would ever pay for it, however I found it pretty and this is an "Ideal" closet so here it is. The heels are from Topshop, utterly cute and girly with a satin bow and chunky heel, I this could potentially be a great Christmas day outfit. What do you think? 


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What else? I watched the Apple Christmas ad and liked it, a lot, I'm one of those sentimental people who gets a tear with these kind of ads, I get the controversy and why people might not like it, but what do you think? Watch it here

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Heal's Challenge Video


This is the video Heal's put together of the making off of the living room I designed  for the #healschallenge. You might remember I shared it with you some time ago together with my inspiration, the sofa I picked amongst all the Heal's sofas was the Regal, I loved the English feel. My board looked like this:


Myself and 7 other bloggers put together our thinking caps and each of us created our dream living room. The winner would have their living room created in the Tottenham Court Road store in London and in some other stores across the UK (like the Guildford one). 

I was chuffed to be picked as the winner, I would have never ever thought I would win, all the other rooms were great! Here you can see all the living rooms created. 

Unfortunately I wasn't able to be there for the making of the set in the Tottenham Court Road Heal's store but I loved watching the video and seeing the photos, it felt like I was there!

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You can see my Pinterest  board here 


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Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Make it: Apples with caramel sauce


If you have apples at home and looking to make something for desert there are many options, apple pie, apple crumble, baked apples etc etc. Over the weekend my mom and I found this recipe to make apples with caramel sauce, sounded pretty easy and a bit different so off we went and made it. The ingredients of the original recipe were a bit off so I changed them a bit below. It's scrumptious, not overly complicated and if you want a non chocolate but still really rich desert then give this a go.

Printable recipe here


Ingredients

2 big red apples
3 tbsp sugar
50gr cold unsalted butter in cubes
300ml cream
1/2 tsp vanilla


Instructions

Peal your apples and cut them in 4 pieces (half and half again and remove all the seeds). 
In a large pan over medium heat cook the butter and vanilla, apples and cream. Cook each side of the apples for about 5 minutes until they soften and get a creamy colour. Stir the cream with a wooden spoon so the cream cooks too. Remove the apples out and place in a bowl/large platter to serve.

In a separate large pan distribute evenly the sugar and sprinkle with 1 tsp of water. Put the heat on medium-low and cook for about 5-6 minutes while stirring the pan for the caramel to cook nicely and for it to become golden. 

Stir in the caramel into your cream sauce and mix in well, the cream will change colour and become nicely caramelised. 

Serve your apples in individual bowls and serve with the warm sauce on top. 


Printable recipe here

Recipe adapted from an original recipe of Greek Chef Dimitris Skarmoutsos

Monday, December 16, 2013

My Christmas Dress is from Bastyan


A couple of weeks ago Bastyan kindly asked me if I wanted to wear one of their dresses and style it as I would for a Christmas party. While this is going to be a low key year in term of Christmas parties and full on festivities, and I envision it to be more of a jeans and comfy sweater type of outfit I couldn't miss the opportunity to get all dressed up and go for it. I wore my trusted high heeled sandals, bright Nars lipstick and fluffed up my hair and the dress did the rest. 

The Bella dress is truly impeccably made, the hand beaded body is heavy and this rather simple LBT becomes rather glam without the need of big or bold accessories. Bonus points: the sheer panels give the hotness needed in all party dress! And to make it even sweeter, it's now ON SALE!



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Dress: c/o Bastyan | Sandals: Pura Lopez  (similar and similar) | Clutch: Coast | Coat: Uterque


My Beauty Look

Friday, December 13, 2013

Ideal Closet


This is another exact outfit I would love to wear on a daily basis. I don't wear leggings much, because I think you need the greatest legs to be able to carry them nicely with dignity but I love toying with the idea of leather leggings or skinnies. A good pair can be a closet staple, with ankle wedge booties it would be an incredibly simple yet edgy outfit. I want!

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Thursday, December 12, 2013

Paris oh la la (1)


If you follow me on Instagram you probably saw that I was in Paris for a small holiday. I went to visit very good friends and had a lovely time. I got 5 days of glorious skies, beautiful chilly days and got to walk around one of the most gorgeous cities in the world. And while, yes I do appreciate beauty and I while I can definitely appreciate the beauty of the city, brace yourselves as I might upset some of you Paris lovers, I wouldn't want to live there ever. 

There I said it, and it's out there! Paris IS gorgeous but just not for me. Now let me show you all the beauty nonetheless because wherever you look you are stricken by true architectural beauty. Want to join me?

I have now been 3 times to Paris and what impresses me more is the grandeur of it. Paris was largely demolished in the late 1980's and Haussman was the brain behind the modernisation of the city and what we know know and recognise as the typical Paris. 


My friends live in a lovely apartment in Montmartre just a few stones away the Sacré Coeur. I walked the stairs and just like that around the corner I came across the most incredible mountain and church you can imagine. White and majestic like a Queen.

Montmartre
Sacre Coeur Paris

Besides spending quality time with loving friends this trip was also special because I got to visit 2 parisian landmarks I had neglected in my previous trips. I went to see the Tour Eiffel from really really close (we didn't go up but walk under this steal lady) and also walked around the super cute Marais. You must be wondering what I did the last 2 times I went to Paris! I know!

Tour Eiffel
Tour Eiffel
Tour Eiffel from the Pont d'Alma

At the Marais, besides getting lost in the incredible shops there are (hello Diptyque!), climbing the George Pompidou Center stairs to view the gorgeous view (it's free!) and wander around Plaçe des Vosges (hello Victor Hugo!) we also visited L'Eclair de Genie, where yes indeed as the name suggest is a little eclair shop with long long queues and little (yes quite literally!) choux pastries (they were TO DIE FOR!)

Plaçe des Vosges
Pompidou Center back
Repetto Marais
L'Eclair de genie
L'Eclair de genie
L'Eclair de genie

More Paris next week!
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