June 29, 2012

LSL {The Lovely List} - Sweetness

I talk about my state of Francophile quite often. Well, probably enough for you to almost get sick of hearing about my love for all things French. Almost being the operative word. 

But before you tell me to shut it, I have another sweet video for you. If you ever find yourself in a French Bakery, not knowing what to do, you'll have me (okay Olive Us) to thank for a successful visit.


How to Visit a French Bakery from Olive Us on Vimeo.


Thank you Olive Us for continuing to reaffirm my French love. Now even more I want to go and eat some pastries and, say it with me now...go to France!

Bon Weekend
xo,
L

PS. For my girl Ella, this totally made me think of you.

LSL {Foodie Friday} - 4th of July Fun

Happy Friday! And Happy almost 4th of July! What are your plans this coming weekend/week? Going away to Tahoe to gallivant on a boat? Camping on the coast? BBQs all week? Or are you one of the few of us that have to work most of next week? Well, at least we still have our weekends. #silverlining

This Foodie Friday, I thought I would do things a little different around here and post links to all the things I would rather be doing, eating, wearing, etc. 






These links will be all you need to get your red, white and blue on, where ever you may be celebrating it...

Ideas for party decorations and table settings.

Fun 4th cupcake toppers.

Outfit selection.

BBQ skewers with a twist.

You know I like my dessert options, so try this, this, or this
.

And for the kidlits
.

Some glamping adventure ideas.

Cocktail hour can't go wrong with this and that


Bon Appetit and wishing you a safe and sparking weekend and week!

xo,
L

*Credit - 1/2/3/4/5/6

June 27, 2012

Laughternoon Break - Call Me Maybe

Stumbled upon this video courtesy of those lovely Glitter Girls and had to share...

You all know that song by Carly Rae Jepson, Call Me Maybe, and how great damn catchy it is. Well, here's a jam sesh that Rebecca Minkoff, The Man Repeller (my all-time fav), and Miss Hilary Rhoda made while getting ready for the 2012 CFDA Awards. Man, I would love for them to Call Me Maybe! ;)



Hit play, then repeat and enjoy! 

xo,
L

June 25, 2012

Lovely Collaboration

I wanted to share a sneak peek of something my lovely friend, Liz, and I have been working on. Liz came to me one day with the idea of getting us together to showcase our interests, hers photography, and for me, trying my hand at styling a photoshoot. After some very detailed planning emails, many ideas thrown back and forth, a few phone calls, more texts, and one Pinterest board later, our collaboration was born.



Thank you to Lizzie for your incredible talent and for this amazing photograph, I cannot wait to see more from our day. And another thank you to D and M, our oh-so patient (and smokin' hot!) models. 

To see another snapshot from this shoot, be sure to check out Liz's blog and facebook page. (While your there, why don't you go ahead and 'like' it too!) 

xo,
L

June 22, 2012

LSL {Foodie Friday} - Zucchini "Pasta"

Just to be clear, I'm a sucker for pasta. You all know it. You can see it here. I admit to it, almost at every pasta related Foodie Friday. I may need to enter some rehabilitation facility for people with pasta and caprese salad addictions. "Hi my name is Lauren and I'm a pasta and caprese-aholic"  

Now that I have gotten that off my chest, this week's Foodie Friday is a different kind of pasta. It's a veggie-sta. (Haha get it? I just combined veggie and pasta) Summer vegetables like zucchini and tomatoes are so easy to find right now at any farmers' market, that when I saw this Whole Living's recipe, I instantly wanted to try it. It looks easy and combines one of my favorite ingredients, basil. (And yes, just in case you were keeping track, I have a lot of foodie favorites!)




Zucchini Pasta

Serves 2

Ingredients
8 ounces cherry tomatoes, sliced
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped raw walnuts
2 tablespoons torn fresh basil, plus leaves for garnish
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Sea salt
1 zucchini, thinly sliced lengthwise, slices cut into 1/4-inch-long strips

Directions
In a bowl, combine tomatoes, garlic, walnuts, basil, and oil. Season with salt. Let stand 20 minutes. Toss with zucchini and garnish with basil.

Serve outside with some nice company, a white or sparkling wine and just enjoy!

Bon Appetit and Happy Weekend!

xo,
L

June 19, 2012

LSL {Housetour} - Amanda Peet's Place

I was over at the parent's house this weekend to celebrate Father's Day and in addition to always loving going there (ahem...laundry) my Mom has a great collection of magazines that get refreshed every month: Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Vanity Fair, and so on. But what really caught my eye this visit was the latest issue of Vogue that features the lovely Miss Amanda Peet's abode. She shares her home with Screenwriter David Benioff (Game of Thrones, anyone?!) and their two girls. While Miss Peet is a NY girl through and through, her Hollywood Hills home is all CA, with it's Spanish style elements and open airy rooms. 

I can see why this NYC native can easily call LA home.









Time for "what's my favorite part" game. So, besides how adorable Amanda Peet and her children are, I think it would be that entry way. Wowza! Wait, or is it the pool? Too effortlessly chic for me. To read the interview and see even more snapshots, go here.

xo,
L

*Credit - Vogue, Interview by Eve MacSweeney | photographed by Fran├žois Halard

June 15, 2012

LSL {Foodie Friday} - Prosciutto & Fresh Mozzarella on Grilled Garlic Toasts

So you know that I have been dairy-free for a couple of weeks. I mean, I've probably mentioned it to anyone standing next to me long enough, and my friends, my poor friends who have to hear me complain about. And then they're patience in dealing with me ordering at restaurants. Good luck trying to split dishes with me, that's out of the question. And that was only for two weeks! (haha) I bet I made it seem like an eternity. Sorry guys, you know I love ya! Well, I am officially off the wagon...or back on the wagon, I can't remember what the wagon means anymore. But the dairy is back in. And, as I stated in this post, I did it for health reasons but I don't think dairy was the problem, so back to square one. However, being at square one means that I can have glorious mozzarella and frozen yogurt back in my life. 

Last weekend I went to an Italian restaurant with friends, and it was delicious, even my modified meal. Well we ordered this appetizer that looked (and sounded by my friend's reactions) amazing. So this Foodie Friday I have dedicated it to recreating that delicious starter I was so desperately drooling after. 


Prosciutto & Fresh Mozzarella on Grilled Garlic Toasts
Makes 24 toasts

1 baguette
2 cloves of garlic, peeled
3 tablespoons of olive oil
8 ounces of fresh mozzarella, sliced
6 slices of prosciutto, thinly sliced
sea salt & cracked pepper
fresh basil, chopped

Prepare the bread by slicing it into thin slices.  Grill bread just before serving.  You can do it under the broiler in your oven, or on the grill.  Brush the bread with olive oil on one side.  If broiling, place them on a sheet-oiled side up and place them under the broiler for 1-2 minutes.  Be careful not to burn!  If grilling, also grill the bread for 1-2 minutes.  When you remove them from the grill or oven, let them cool slightly, then rub the raw clove of garlic on each piece.

If grilling, brush the other side of the bread with oil, the put that side down on the baking sheet or tray.  If you are broiling in the oven, just keep the toasts on the sheet with their toasted side up. Top each piece of bread with small, thin slices of prosciutto.  Then, top each with a slice of fresh mozzarella.  Grill or broil the toasts for 2 minutes, or just until the mozzarella begins to melt.  Remove from the grill or broiler and top with salt, pepper and fresh basil.


And as you can see in this picture Jenny, of Everyday Occasions, paired it with another one of her scrumptious starters, Artichokes with Lemon Garlic Caper Aioli. These can be easy treats to tempt Dad with on Father's Day.  

Bon Appetit and Happy Weekend!

xo,
L

June 13, 2012

Bits & Baubles

I have a thing for jewelry. It's simple and true. And judging how full and tangled the current state of my jewelry box is, it's a collection that is getting a good amount of use. And since jewelry is usually so small, and jewelry boxes come in all sorts of sizes, a girl can always add more to her collection. My motto is why wear one bracelet when you can wear six?!

I love how a nice simple diamond necklace or earrings can dress up any outfit and make it seem more fancy, or you can dress down a LBD with some bangles and a funky, chunky necklace. And jewelry always makes a gal feel good even when she's having her fat days, you know a necklace and earrings will always fit.

Enter my newest obsession, online jewelry shopping website, Bauble Bar. I know it's been around for a bit, but since I just discovered it, it's only normal that I blog about it. (riiight) So, sit down, grab your coffee/lunch/cocktail and check out some of my favorites...










And some of my personal favorites are anything that can be personalized or monogrammed, like Reese Witherspoon says, "if it's not moving, monogram it." ;)



To add even more icing on the Bauble Bar cake, they have teamed up with my all-time favorite jewelry designer, Gorjana, and worked together on a few pieces but it's only on thru June 21st, people! This is my favorite...

*Psst...Side note, so waaaaay back in my boutique working days, I met Gorjana when she was just starting out and traveling to different boutiques in CA to sell her jewels. In addition to being such a sweet person, I thought her jewelry creations were the bees knees and she is who inspired me to start trying my hand at my own jewelry making. Now I just need to get back into it.

Okay, time to get to brass tacks, I was in no way paid or perked for writing this post. (Too bad though, cause a girl can always use that new personalized twitter nameplate, @looksolovely if you so desire, or that Gorjana and BB chevron bracelet ....cough, anyonelistening, cough). I just really like their classic, playful, mostly colorful, and sometimes edgy designs. And their price tags don't hurt either. You know me and my frugalista finds, just had to share.

What's your stance on jewelry? Are you a wear a lot of it, kinda girl or a just stick to the basics, one? And more importantly what are your favorite baubles from the bar? 

xo,

June 8, 2012

LSL {Foodie Friday} - Cinnamon Roll Almond Flour Donuts

I have one more (loooong) week of this non-dairy nonsense. So I figured if I'm going thru it, well so are you! (ha!) This Foodie Friday I thought I would do donuts, but you know, the gluten-free, non-dairy version. Yeah, I didn't think it existed either. But I have spent a lot of time over the last week trying to find dairy-free recipes that I would actually like. Don't get me wrong, but a girl can only eat so many Annie's frozen vegan burritos until she is over it. (FYI, it's three for this little lady).

You know when you're not supposed to eat or do something it's all you want to do. Just try getting your nails done and not needing to scratch your nose. I bet ya can't. So when I knew donuts would be off limits, I needed wanted one bad. And, funny enough I don't think I've eaten a donut in years, but I had to have one. 

Enter this week's Foodie Friday...


Cinnamon Roll Almond Flour Donuts
via {Roost}

Donuts (makes 6 regular sized donuts OR 18 mini donuts)
Ingredients
1 1/4 cup almond flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs
1/4 cup ghee/oil of your choice, melted
2 TBS honey
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped and pod discarded (OR 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract)

1.) Preheat oven to 350F.
2.) Whisk together all dry ingredients in a bowl. Transfer to a blender*
3.) Combine all wet ingredients (including the vanilla bean seeds) in a bowl. Add to the blender.
4.) Blend until batter is very smooth. Pour into greased donut molds (I used the regular and mini), filling them 2/3 the way.
5.) Bake for 12 minutes. DO NOT OVERBAKE or they will be dry. Air on the caution of under baking

* Blending the mixture results in a super smooth batter that can sometimes be difficult to achieve when working with nut flours.

Cinnamon Topping
1 cup of dates, pitted (about 8 medjool dates)
1 1/2 TBS cinnamon
2 TBS ghee/butter, melted
hazelnuts, chopped and toasted
unsweetened coconut 

1.) Place dates, cinnamon and ghee in a food processor and process until a thick, spreadable paste has formed. 
2.) Combine hazelnuts and coconut in a shallow bowl. Set aside.

Assembly
1.) Remove donuts from oven. While still warm spread a generous amount of cinnamon mixture atop the donut. 
2.) Roll in the hazelnut/coconut mixture.
3.) Enjoy!

Donuts can be stored in an air tight container at room temperature for 1 week.



YUM!


I hope you won't make fun of me when I eat three of these. They looks so very non-dairy delicious. What cravings do you get when you know they're off limits? Have any tips for me for keeping them in check? Really, I could use all the help I can get. 

Bon Appetit and Happy Weekend!

xo,

June 7, 2012

LSL {The Lovely List} - The Everygirl

The Everygirl website has been up and running for just over six months now. It first came across my radar somewhere over the blog-o-sphere (probably in a pinterest induced haze) and I have been hooked on their site ever since. It's a great resource for that "Everygirl" in any stage of her life.  If you don't believe me, well their manifesto speaks for itself:
The Everygirl, LLC, is the newest online resource helping shape the creative, career-driven woman to experience her life better lived. It is the inspiration to help you achieve your dreams, whatever they may be. Whether it’s how to incorporate a little creativity into your day or motivating you to seek out your dream job, The Everygirl is for you. It is our mission and hope for you to use The Everygirl site to be inspired, but also to take action to become the woman who believed you could, so you did!
And to toot this websites horn even more, today, Danielle and Alaina (the super talented co-founders) did a feature on one of my favorite bloggers, Erin Gates of Elements of Style and Erin Gates Design. I simply love her office decor and I have a feeling I'm going to be that girl that totally copies boldly emulates her style in to my own home. 

Consider this my "mood" board for my, hope-to-one-day-afford-all-this-fabulous-stuff, apartment. 







A great quote to live by!




  

It a clean, simple space with so much amazing details to catch your eye. To read Erin's interview and to see even more pretty pictures, go here


Okay, let's play my "what's your favorite part"?, game. Well, for my fellow francophiles, you might have guessed it was the large scale art (didn't I just have this conversation?). ;) But I think it's a tie between that beautiful grey hutch filled with fabulous fabric swatches and those amazing zebra, partly French-style chairs. Yes, please! Oh! And okay, maaaybe that "I Love You Blogs & Coffee" print. I really need to get me one of those.

What's your favorite part?

xo,
L

June 6, 2012

Gallery Walls

To have a gallery wall or not to? That is my question. I love the look of gallery walls and have always enjoyed seeing them in other people's homes; it's fun to check out the pictures and memorabilia all in one place. 

The reason I pose this gallery wall conundrum is...you guessed it, I have one big wall that is just screaming for a change. And since you know I live in a studio, I really only have four walls to play with, and seeing that three of my walls are either a closet, a large window, or the entry way to my kitchen. So the one wall it is. Could a gallery wall work? 

THE wall in question
Looks much smaller than it is, but in total it's over 13ft.
via my trusty iPhone

Here are my thoughts-

Do the traditional: same color frames throughout and it must go all the way to the ceiling...



Bookmark this!
This picture comes with a how-to.


Or do eclectic with a mixture of frames and art work...


Or there's shabby chic, with mirrors and empty frames...

Or paint part of the wall dark to frame it...

Or paint it all dark and move it to the bathroom... yeah probably not. But that chalkboard paint is fun none-the-less.

Or make it a little more modern and incorporate shelves...

OR scrap the gallery idea altogether and swap it for some extra large art...





What to do? What to do? Seeing all these great ideas makes me inspired to get something up in the walls asap. For me hanging pretty things is always the last thing on the list to do when I move. And, sadly more times than not, I never get to it, leaving my apartments and rooms feeling incomplete. 

However going through all these images, I do still love my gallery wall idea the best. I have so many random pictures, art pieces, and keepsakes that I would love to have out on display. And as much as I love the idea of very large scale art, I'm not sure if my teeny-tiny studio is ready for it. But, man once I get that mansion, large scale art better watch out. 

What are your thoughts about hanging up pictures in your home? Do you have any gallery wall advice of your own? Or frankly any picture hanging advice for keeping everything in line and not needing to put a thousand holes in your wall? (Is it just me?!)


xo,
L
*Credits - 1/2/3/4/5/6/7/8/9/10/11/12
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