Monday, May 6, 2013
To celebrate my husband's recent birthday, we headed up to Los Padres National Forest and set up camp in the Upper Oso Campground for a weekend of campfires, gourmet camp cooking and no cell phones. Upper Oso is about a two hour drive from LA but it feels like another world - we could have been anywhere. The weather was hot, so after our first breakfast we trekked to the Red Rock pools for a day of swimming, sunbathing and jumping off rocks into the cool pools. Bea made cocktails and we had lunch of chips, guacamole, sardines, and cherries.
At night, we stoked the fire and cooked foil packets of potatoes and asparagus with wild sage and apricots. We made quesadillas and drank tequila. We told stories and slept underneath the stars. Can't wait for the next adventure.
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
A few weeks ago, my girlfriends and I spent a magical weekend in San Luis Obispo, a sweet little town on the Central Coast of California. We stayed in a spacious house, Casita Las Brisas, complete with hot tub, native landscaping and drop dead gorgeous valley views. The environment was conducive to complete relaxation and inspiration.
Moments after we arrive. Bea, Joanna, Simone and I were giddy and instantly fell in love with the view.
We took a million pictures and tried to control our desire to instagram every single moment.
My sister drove down from San Francisco and arrived just in time for a perfect sunset.
Just really really happy to be there at that moment.
Morning fog, view from the house.
Sun Room - where we drank coffee and read magazines in the morning.
We drank a bit of champagne with raspberries. And spicy tequila cocktails made by Bea.
And chilled Lambrusco in the hot sun.
The sun felt amazing and I tried to soak it all in (for short intervals, while wearing sun screen)
We went to the farmers market and admired the impressive bounty of local produce and flowers.
SLO is wine country and we visited several wineries one afternoon. Our favorite was Edna Valley, where we stocked up on gourmet ingredients and bottles of wine to bring home. We also turned it into a photoshoot.
And played amongst the flowers.
And lastly....this happened. Perfect ending to an indulgent and cozy weekend with the girls!
Sunday, April 21, 2013
This past sunday turned into the day of the loquat, as my tree is overflowing with ripe fruit ready to be eaten. With fantasies of afternoon cocktails in mind, I decided to make loquat syrup.
Loquat Spritzer - two spoonfuls of syrup mixed with sparkling water and lemon. Served over ice.
Loquat Rose Cocktail - two spoonfuls of syrup mixed with a shot of vodka, the juice of a lime, a splash of rose water and ice. Topped with sparkling water and served in glass rimmed with rose sugar and finished with a lime wedge.
Click over to The Chalkboard to find the recipe for loquat syrup!
Monday, April 15, 2013
As part of my month guest editing The Chalkboard, I thought it would be fun to invite some ladies to the new gallery space for an afternoon of flower arranging with Hollyflora. Florists Holly and Becky brought buckets of the most gorgeous spring blooms and taught us how to create arrangements based on Dutch still lifes. Read more about our flower arranging workshop here.
Arranging lilacs and geranium leaves.
Joanna Williams and her gorgeous combination of poppies and ranunculus.
An antique rose.
Louise Bonnet putting finishing touches on her cheerful creation.
Monday, April 8, 2013
For the month of April I am guest editing Pressed Juicery's lifestyle and wellness blog The Chalkboard. I'll be posting once a week and my first story is all about breakfast. Muesli, to be exact. My friend and beloved LA chef Zoe Nathan agreed to share her recipe for traditional Muesli and I can't get enough of it. Click over to The Chalkboard to see the whole story and check out the recipe below.
courtesy of Zoe Nathan
3 cups whole milk
2 cups plain whole yogurt
1 cup apple, skin on, grated (2 apples)
3/4 cup yellow raisins
1 ripe banana, sliced
9 tbsp cracked wheat or bugler wheat
9 tbsp rolled oats, toasted
9 tbsp wheat germ, toasted
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup dates, chopped (6 dates)
2 tbsp flax seeds, ground
2 tbsp millet
1 tbsp chia seeds or poppy seeds
pinch of kosher salt
seasonal fresh fruit for topping
Stir everything together in a large mixing bowl. Cover tightly and refrigerate overnight.
In the morning, mound into bowls and top with sliced, chopped or whole seasonal fruit.
Keeps well refrigerated for 2 to 3 days.
Thursday, March 28, 2013
Over the past few weeks, I've had a couple of my favorite bloggers come visit me at the gallery and post really great features about our new office space. Check it out on Tomboy Style and Sacramento Street. Both such lovely blogs!
(photos 1 & 2 via Tomboy Style; photo 3 via Sacramento Street)
Monday, March 25, 2013
Just when I thought my devotion to craft had reached an all time high, I received and invitation to a dying workshop, led by Britt Browne and co-hosted by Beatrice Valenzuela at her home in Echo Park. The theme was Cochineal, a tiny insect that lives on cacti and, when ground, becomes a gorgeous powder that is used for dying. Depending on the insect's region of origin, the color varies from deep magenta to the brightest red.
Once Britt gave us the rundown on the process, we spent hours dying pieces of linen, eggs, paper and more in four different dye baths. We experimented with painting stripes, overdying and lots of other techniques. The whole experience felt like an exciting adventure, like you never knew exactly what you were going to get.