2.27.2012

Oscar Fashion

Last nights award ceremony red carpet was nothing short of glamorous, {the rest...we can concur was a bit dull}.  There were so many spring styles, it was a bit hard to choose our favorites.  From brights and pastels, peplum, metallics, blush nudes, and the purest of them all, white; the stars out-shined each other.  
Here's a brief recap of the best looks:


Pure Whites:
Milla Jovovich: Elie Saab// Rooney Mara: Givenchy // Gwenyth Paltrow: Tom Ford // Giuliana Rancic: Tony Ward 
Blush Nudes:
Louise Roe: BlackHalo // JLo: Zuhair Murad // Cameron Diaz: Gucci // Kristen Wiig: J. Mendel
Spring Brights:
Maria Menounos:  Maria Lucia Hohan  // Michelle Williams: Louis Vuitton // Emma Stone: Giambattista Valli  // Stacy Kiebler: Marchesa

But our best dressed pick has to go to Michelle Williams in her stunning peplum and coral/tangerine dress by Louis Vuitton.

Who were your best dressed picks?



2.24.2012

Mante: the Armenian Wonton


One of my all time favorite Armenian foods is Mante. It reminds me of my childhood, specifically because my sister and I would always help my mom with creating the "little boats." Typically, this traditional meal is prepared in a tomato broth and perfect for a cold winter night but we love it so much that we eat it by itself without the broth, or even with some garlic greek yogurt on top. The ingredients are simple but don't let that fool you, it is quite time consuming and a bit messy. 

Ingredients: 
  1. Won Ton wrappers; found in the refrigerated section at any market {Armenian mothers and grandmas will usually make the dough from scratch, but this is a nice shortcut}
  2. Ground turkey, although it can be made with ground beef as well. 
  3. Half a large onion 
  4. 4-5 cloves of garlic 
  5. Salt and pepper 
Directions; remember this is a family recipe so shushhhh:
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Finely chop your onion and mash the garlic and place in a bowl. Add the raw meat and add just enough salt/pepper for taste; roughly a heaping teaspoon of salt, and half a teaspoon of pepper. Remember, you can always add salt at the end but you can never take it out! 
  3. Cut your won ton wrappers into quarters, roughly 2 by 2.
  4. Place the won ton wrappers in a large non-stick area and roll a bit of meat into a tiny ball and place them in the middle of the won tons.
  5. Slightly wet your fingers so the dough doesn't stick, and diagonally dab across the dough from one corner to the next. Too much water will cause the won ton to tear. 
  6. Fold the ends of the won ton up and gently press together and slightly push down so the base becomes flat and VOILA, you have your little boat!
  7. Continue this until all the meat is gone and place on a cookie sheet. Add some non-stick spray so they don't stick to the foil.  
  8. Place the Mante in the oven for 20-30 minutes, until golden brown.
  9. Let cool, but enjoy them warm.  The recipe for the tomato broth or greek yogurt can be found simply by Googleing it.  
Try it out and let us know what you think!
Finished product


2.22.2012

{ Wine Wednesday }
Great Wine Made Simple


In my fantasy life, I seriously contemplate becoming a Sommelier {a trained and knowledgeable wine professional}.  After reading this book, our vino vocabulary was truly kicked up a notch.  It's not only a great read, it's easy to understand, and its readers are guaranteed a first-hand informational session from a certified Sommelier.  One of our favorite "bang-for-your-buck" wines has to be the Kim Crawford Marlbourough Savignon Blanc from New Zealand.  It has a crisp and powerful punch of gooseberry, citrus and passion fruit flavors; and it is easily paired with salads, seafood, and vegetarian dishes. Last night, it went perfectly with some garlic seasoned green beans, wild Atlantic salmon, and some quinoa tabbouleh.

You can read more about this wine here.
What are some of your favorite go-to wines?

2.21.2012

{ Favorites } of the week

Thank goodness Monday was a holiday!  Here are some treasures and trinkets on our minds this short week:
{ Studded collar @ Zara //  Hermes bracelet }
{ Valentine's night lips with YSL brights // Leopard Bebe booties } 
{ Coveted rings seen @  The Glamourai // Adorable house-warming gifted wine bottle vase }
{ Valentine's Day gift // Ombre Hair, House of Harlow necklace }



2.17.2012

{ Inspiration } Menswear

I have always been inspired by menswear. Vests, fedoras, a tailored suit... I'd probably even sport a pair of suspenders! I recently stumbled upon a fun new trend to add to my menswear collection: bow tie pins. I was on a recent photo shoot where the stylist's assistant was using them in some of the looks and I had to have them.  To my surprise, she told me that she had made the bow ties.  The best part is, they are a fun, inexpensive and easy way to spruce up a boring button down shirt.  You can even use the bows in your hair or on the lapel of a blazer for some extra edge. The thing to remember about menswear is you want to make sure you balance it with feminine touches. When I wore this white suit on Christmas Eve, I paired it with sexy shoes and a patent YSL clutch. I paired the striped bow tie with a sequined Free People blazer and some hot pink lipstick { like YSL's Rouge Pur in Fuschia Innocent}. This look should be styled by either tucking in the shirt to a pair of wide leg trousers, high waisted shorts or untucked over a pair of skinny jeans.  Make sure you check out the bow ties and all they have to offer, here.
How would you wear the menswear look?



2.14.2012

{ Visions of pink and red }

I'm a firm believer that calories don't count on Valentine's Day...or on your birthday, or on any special occasion for that matter. And, we probably shouldn't even be celebrating this Hallmark holiday since were already married, but I decided to be a bit cheesy and bake up a storm for him anyway!

Happy Valentine's day everyone, I hope its blissfully romantic.







2.10.2012

NY Fashion Week

The 2012 Mercedes-Benz Fashion week kicked off yesterday with a stylish soiree on the runway.  Herve Leger, Rebecca Taylor, Tibi, BCBG, Z Spoke by Zac Posen, BLK DNM, Michael Kors and Ports 1961 are just a tiny few of our very long list of favorites that will keep us captivated with the must-see, {study and purchase!} pre-fall trends.  Yesterday marked day one of  the week long event with happy, wide-eyed, well-dressed attendees eager for more and more trends.  So stay tuned for our favorite looks on the catwalk in some upcoming posts; here were some of the best from day one:

@ BCBG - Fur, colorblocking, burnt oranges with turquoise mixed with calf length chic dresses
Individual Images via thecut.com
@ BLK DNM - Olive Green, leather pants and touches of sheer and lace
Individual Images via thecut.com

@ 10 Crosby Derek Lam - Layers, fur, peplum cardigans, and lots of colors
Individual Images via thecut.com

@ Z Spoke by Zac Posen - Sophisticated silhouettes, menswear inspired blouses, and exquisite tailoring.
Individual Images via thecut.com

Who are some of your favorite designers that will be featured at NYFW?

    2.08.2012

    { Wine Wednesday }
    Wine & Food: A New Look at Flavor


    A few weeks ago, while strolling through our favorite Sunday store, I stumbled upon this book; Williams-Sonoma Wine & Food: a new look at flavor by Joshua Wesson.  I thought it would be a good investment considering it provides recipes and wine pairings all in one handy-dandy book.  It also explores wine history and regions, includes a concise encyclopedia on wine terminology, and gives insightful information on wine labels, coloring, sweetness and acidity.  I decided to try the Bacon & Caramelized-Onion Tart. I improvised a little and added some Gorgonzola cheese and Prosciutto instead.  For wine pairings, the recipe called for a soft white wine and gave various options for New/Old World wines such as South African Chenin Blanc, or an Alsatian Riesling.  It also provided alternative pairings with a sparkling wine such as a Vouvray. I decided to pair my tartine with a Riesling.  The softness of the wine complemented the tarts salty tastes and textures.  Oh, and..yes, it tasted as good as it looked!
    Ingredients:  Puff pastry; Prosciutto di parma; white onion and Gorgonzola cheese
    Place sliced cheese,  prosciutto and caramelized onions on egg-washed pastry, set oven to 400 degrees and bake for 20 minutes until edges are golden brown.
    A look at the insides along with my wine pairing, Two-Vines Riesling

     What are some of your favorite food and wine pairings?  What is your go-to book or website?


    2.07.2012

    < Beauty How to >
    Smokey Eyes

    From left to right clock wise: NARS creme shadow in Mykonos, Trucco by
    Sebastian powder shadow in Brun, NARS duo shadow in Cordura, NARS
    shadow in Night Clubbing
    Clea de Peu concealer in Beige, UltraFlesh mascara in The Gold Standard //
    We also recommend Lancome Definicils Pro & Hypnose Drama mascaras
    We love a smokey eye.  Who doesn't? The result gives a sultry but striking look to the eyes, especially if paired with a nude lip (as last discussed here).  Many people have asked us how to achieve the smokey eye look, so we decided to share our secrets with you!  There are many ways to get the same look with various dark shades, it's not always necessary to use black or dark grey shadows which most people mistakenly believe. I personally like browns as opposed to grays and black because they are not as harsh as black and yet still compliment my skin tone because they are warmer colors.  


    Always stick to these basic color pairings:  Blacks/grays (See NARS colors above and MAC Knight Divine); browns/taupes (NARS above, or MAC Amber Lights, Woodwinked); purples/light purple shades (MAC Sable, Nocturnelle), dark blues/metallics (MAC Blue Edge),  dark green (MAC Humid)/metallics.  Just play around with the colors that you feel compliment your skin tone, and go from there.


    Creme base; Apply shadow; blend blend blend!!
    Continue blending; add highlighter; liner and mascara
    Here is how to apply: 
    1. Rub NARS Mykonos creme shadow on the entire bare lid.  If you want to start with a dark creme base, MAC's Dangerous Curve also works.    
    2. Go over the creme base with a matte brown. I like Trucco's Brun, but any brand will work. This will set the creme base. 
    3. Take a more vibrant brown {ie: MAC Woodwinked or Amber Lights} with some shimmer and start from the inner corner of your eye covering your entire lid and move towards the outer corner of your eye
    4. Take the darker brown shimmer in the NARS Cordura duo and using a more precise brush sweep the shadow along the crease of your eye.  Your brush is key here for precision. 
    5. Finally take a matte black shadow {actual shadow not pictured} and dab it only on the outer corner of your eye and BLEND BLEND BLEND. Blending is the key to achieving this look {with any color}.
    6. Take an eyeliner brush and dip it into NARS Night Clubbing and follow the natural curve of your eyelid and wing the ends out. {A tutorial on winged liner is coming soon}.  Use your brush to smudge the line so it doesn't look too perfect.
    7. Proceed to cleaning under the eye so no excess shadow changes the concealer color.  Using a brush or your finger, gently dab concealer under the eyes and blend. 
    8. Add liner under the bottom lashes and smudge.
    9. Don't forget your highlighter shadow {very subtly} on the top arch near the brows.
    10. Lastly, finish with applying lots of mascara {on top and bottom} to complete the look.

    Good luck and most importantly, have fun and experiment with other colors and add your own twist to it!  If you have your own tips, share them here with our readers!  What are your favorite colors to get this look?



    2.03.2012

    glimpses of spring

    Vince leather jacket // Forever 21 dress // Elizabeth & James booties // Hue tights // Vintage  sunglasses // Free people cuff // Anthropologie/ J.Crew necklaces
    Sometimes on Sundays, we'll drive around town looking at gorgeous estates, getting landscape ideas, and exploring unknown territory.  This time, we stopped at a beautiful park called Franceschi Park which sits atop the Riviera nestled in a neighborhood overlooking the water.  The views were immaculate and it was a true glimpse of Spring being just around the corner.  Since it's still Winter but the day had touches of Spring in the air, my outfit was a tribute to both; black leather with soft white lace.




    Franceschi Park

    2.01.2012

    { Wine Wednesday }
    Napa Style Part II


    Continuing on our journey through Napa, here are a few more wineries that must be tried:
    Frank Family, Rombauer, & St. Clement Wineries
    These three wineries were outstanding. Frank Family offers a private tasting if you call ahead and make a reservation. Must try the Blanc de Blanc Champagne, we loved it!! Be sure to pack some snacks though because they don’t provide any cheese or crackers during their tasting… drinking a  bit too much and stumbling out of the room is a definite possibility, and should be avoided at all costs (awkward/embarrassing). 

    San Clement is also a must see. It has a very quaint and old-world feel. They provide a delicious cheese plate with dried fruit and nuts, and it pairs with the wine like you wouldn't believe. And last but definitely not least, Rombauer. This winery looks as if it’s been taken straight out of a picture. Pack a lunch before you head over, go in for a tasting, buy a bottle of your favorite wine and make your way down their private garden. The trail through the picturesque backyard leads to different picnic tables hidden amidst weeping willows and an array of flowers. It is definitely a fairy tale hike.
    The Rombauer Gardens Trail
    The Culinary Institute of America Greystone
    This 19th century castle-like building is not only one of Napa Valley’s most historic properties, but it is also known to be one of the world’s most unique campuses for culinary education. Tour the facility, watch a demonstration, and taste the unique flavors created by the students.  You won't forget this trip!

    Overall the vacay was amazing and we can not wait to go back! If you visit these places, or have a few of your own, please leave a comment and let us know how your experience was.