Monday, October 31, 2011

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Heavenly Coconut Cupcakes

I am a chocolate addict. Any sort of dessert that involves rich dark cocoa, I will gladly eat.  But recently I was craving a lighter and fluffier vanilla based dessert, so when I stumbled across this recipe for Coconut Cake, I just had to make it, but in cupcake form. 

(The butter and sugar creamed together)
(The egg whites being folded into the batter)
(Delicious batter prepared to be baked)

(Fresh from the oven)
(So beautiful, not to mention moist with an unbelievable frosting)

A few things: From my experience, the essential ingredient to making a cake moist is to incorporate buttermilk.  So instead of adding the half a cup of milk and half a cup of coconut milk, I added one cup of buttermilk.  The result? An amazingly light and fluffy cake.  Also, I  made Seven Minute Frosting, which I discovered that I prefer more than the traditional buttercream icing.  It consists of egg whites that have been whipped to perfection and definitely provide an airy compliment to the moist cake.  And the toasted coconut that is generously sprinkled on top, is well, the icing on the (cup)cake. 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Obsession: Chanel's Seashell Clutches

The Chanel Spring 2012 show was utterly feminine - gorgeous pastels paired with beautiful silhouettes. My favorite part of the show was the seashell handbags. Practical? No. Utterly exquisite? Yes.

All images from and

A Rustic Villa in Tuscany

 (A rustic villa in Tuscany)
  (Light green hallways allow complete focus on the beautifully patterned wood floors)
(Only in Tuscany would you find a decorative ceiling with an intricate floral motif detailed inside the molding)
(Buttery yellow walls)
(Detailed trompe-l'oeil blue molding)
(Carrera marble walls with light blue accents - just amazing)
(I dream to have a stone entryway like this)
(A grotto in the garden that is surrounded by an abundance of foliage)
(Olive trees lining the path leading up to the villa)

I have already written about my dream to own, or at least stay (for extended period of time) in an Italian villa in Tuscany.  The interiors above do nothing but entice me.  The details that are involved in this house include elements that you definitely cannot find Stateside: the old stone walls surounding the villa, the intricately painted parquet floors, the luxurious Carrera marble (that is just stunning), the decorative moldings and the olive trees that lead you down a long path to the entryway.  Until I do get that extended stay, I will loose myself in these photographs.

All images from

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Gold Star - Gold Plated

(Gold confetti appetizer plate)
(Gold rimmed small plate)
(Splashes of gold, salad plate)
(Golden rimmed pink plate)

There is something about gold plates that I just absolutely adore.  Perhaps, it's because it's that time of the year, when gold and silver are the perfect choice for adding festive touches to table settings.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Inspiration - BeautifulFabrics

Being in New York City, it is easy to take advantage of the fact that I am constantly surrounded by inspiration - case in point, all of the fabric stores that fill the garment district.  During my FIT years, I was in the heart of it all and I have been telling myself that I need to go back and explore some of the shops. I recently ventured into Mood Fabrics, of Project Runway fame, in order to get a few ideas for some DIY projects that I am working on.

It is almost intimidating to walk through the aisles that are stocked from floor to ceiling with rolls and rolls of amazingly beautiful fabrics of all sorts of textures and prints, but above all, it is incredibly inspiring. As I walked through each aisle touching the fabric, I began daydreaming about the curtains or pillows that I could make (very ambitious of me, but oh well!).  Regardless, being in this creative environment has definitely turned my mind into full-on creation mode.  Here are some of my favorites - lately I have been quite smitten with different variations on the ikat print.