Hello sweet decor8 readers! It’s Rincy with the first Simple Times post of 2014. I will be honest and say that January was one of ‘those’ months for me which is why I skipped writing here then and thought I’d get started in February instead. The first week of 2014 was spent overworking and then the following weeks were more work and then catching up with things that should have been done the first week. (Please dear friends, tell me I’m not the only one?) The internet however, seemed vibrant with ideas to suit everyone: plan, don’t plan, indulge, don’t overindulge. Listen. Speak. Inspire. Learn. Cleanse. Eat. It left me thinking and then even worse led me to over-thinking. And then well, it just left me plain old stuck in one place. Fast forward to meeting a new friend. The best thing about that is no pre-conceived notions of how things should be. It’s honest conversation without the guilt. That conversation you have with that person on a bus, plane or solo walk home with a friend of a friend. A clean slate. Easy, honest, free. Today, I watched for the second time as my friend prepared a gorgeous Turkish meal for rainy day conversations.
During it, I realized that resolution or no resolution, sometimes it’s about the ‘doing’ that matters. The women I am inspired by are all ‘do-ers’- they adore what they do and even more than that, truly care to keep on growing. A ‘do-er’ does not always achieve high accolades, money in the bank, go a dress size down with minimal effort- it just simply means they are out there in the world saying ‘hey, I’m here and I’m trying.’
(Click on any image above to enlarge.)
And that to me is a whole lot less pressure for the start of the year. So here’s to being a do-er this year. Even if it is one month later than most.
From two ladies who ate well, spoke freely and are finally ready to start 2014: Let’s do this thing. How are you feeling so far about 2014 everyone? -Rincy
(Food/Styling: Ajda Mehmet, Photos/Words: Rincy Koshy)
Hello everyone! While I wait for our little baby to make his grand appearance into the world (I was due yesterday!), I thought I’d blog a little before hitting the morning farmers’ market. How are you? I’m thinking a lot lately about flowers and how excited I am to see them this spring more than ever before because it’s been so cold and since Leslie and I have a book coming out all about flowers soon and we can’t WAIT to show it to you! Flowers are all the rage and have been trending for ages in fashion and interiors but now more than ever before, lots of people are taking a more natural approach to styling them and even going further to experiment with new ideas that include paper and real blooms to create imaginative displays that break tradition. I love seeing this trend! I spot lots of creatives planning floral workshops this year, flower series on their blogs, and Leslie and I are hoping to teach a color-filled floral arranging workshop in London this May so you can see some of our creative ideas with flowers from the book and hang out with us for the day. Flower power, baby!
With all of this flower talk, I want to show you some of the spring-y Liberty prints for S/S 2014 that I’ve paired up with some favorite photos I’ve found online that make me so happy. I’m particularly in love with this one and this one. I hope this mini flower post inspires you today and gets your mind focused on spring and off of the snow and gray clouds. I personally can’t wait until I can plant my balcony and decorate with flowers in my home – I’m dying for some cherry blossoms for my dining room table and to style up some pretty arrangements to share here on the blog for you when our book releases to celebrate its launch. Okay, ready for some pretty floral pairings?
Left: Liberty, Kaylie Sunshine C Tana Lawn Right: Cannelle et Vanille
I love writing a post that inspires me and this one totally did that for me today. I want to print all of these out and tape them into my little inspiration journal. Spring will come soon, I promise! Have a nice weekend everyone and thank you all for your well wishes for my husband and I and our baby-to-be! – Holly xo
(images linked to their sources above)
Hey everybody, it’s Gudy and I’m happy to be here with another trend show report, this time from the IMM Cologne in Germany. I have to say, it is a serious design show and very well visited… This time, I’d like to focus my report on color because there is not much going on that I haven’t reported on so far in my previous columns on decor8 when it comes to form, material, finishings, etc. (you don’t want me to write about copper or indoor gardening again, don’t you?), so let’s see what happens with color schemes in the interior design world. Interesting enough, there is not THE color anymore. Yes, you do have pastels, and yes, there is grey, and other colors considered trending right now. Interior trends once relied on a certain Pantone code, or Dulux (and others), but now brands are working within their very own hue interpretation exploring a single color. Let me show you what I mean and share the photos I snapped at IMM.
Pale pink is still the pastel color! It used to be almost the only one for the past few years. Now we see a bolder pink, we have peach, there is blush, bubble gum, and a long way of other shades. When it comes to pale pink, it is often combined with grey looking for a cooler approach now (see the last report from the M&O).
(click collage to enlarge)
There is no show where you won’t find some red pieces. Seriously. It is probably the color you’ll find literally as a ‘red thread’ through all the interior design events but never considered a true trend. This time, I have seen red allover, probably linked to the burgundy trend we have been observing in fashion this FW 13/14 season. As a statement piece, it will bright any space, you decide if you like it on your side table, armchair or if you’d even go for a bolder sofa. So, are you open to bright red, burgundy, coral, dark orange, oxblood (brownish red)?
Hello everyone — are you ready to make a Chocolate Tart? Perfect for Valentine’s Day, right? It’s Liz here with another episode of Food In Motion, where each month Jewels and I present a quick video showing what we made recently, along with the recipe, so you can try it yourself. We alternate months, and it being my turn this month I challenged myself this time with a delicious Chocolate Tart.
I made this desert recently and I had a picture of it in my head — what the crust was supposed to look like, how the chocolate filling should taste. I started making the tart around noon, but somehow the crust didn’t turn out exactly the way I thought it would and it was a bit crooked. I was frustrated and annoyed, wanting to start from scratch, but time was running out. Since the chocolate filling has to cool for several hours, I knew I had to get the tart in the fridge, otherwise our guests wouldn’t have a desert at all that evening. It was a special party and I wanted the desert to be special. I cried on my husband’s shoulder, who looked at the crust, smiled and dried my tears. He said, for him it looked just perfect. I decided not to re-do the tart, thankful for my husband’s advice. Instead I carried on making the filling. In the evening I presented the tart with sparklers on it and was greeted with lots of Ah’s and Oh’s! Our friends tasted the tart and silence filled the room — they were so stunned by the taste. I received endless compliments!
Here is a video that I shot – I hope that you enjoy it – it’s only a little over a minute long so it won’t take much of your time but hopefully you will feel the love that I put into it.
I tend to be a perfectionist, also because I had filmed making the tart for this episode of Food in Motion, but I realized afterwards that it’s not worth getting flustered about certain things. Our friends were so happy with this delicious desert they didn’t even notice the slightly crooked crust! They admired my homemade baking skills and loved the tart.
1 1/2 cups (200 g) flour, plus more for dusting
pinch of salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla sugar
1 1/2 sticks (175 g) butter
3 tablespoons icewater
1 2/3 cups (400 ml) of heavy cream
1 stick (115 g) butter
16 ounces (450 g) semi-sweet chocolate
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla sugar
pinch of salt
cocoa powder for dusting
Making The Crust:
Place all ingredients in a bowl and mix together quickly with your hands, until the dough holds together. Butter a tart pan and evenly press the dough in the pan. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line the tart with baking paper and add dried beans on top. Bake for approx. 25–30 minutes, until the crust is golden in color. Remove from oven and cool.
In a pot heat the heavy cream until it simmers slightly. Remove from heat and add the butter and the chocolate. Stir until melted. Add the sugars and the salt and stir well. Pour the chocolate mixture into the tart shell and let it cool to room temperature. Then place the tart in the refrigerator for 3–4 hours. Dust with cocoa powder before serving.
So if you too are a little perfectionist – here’s my advice: why not take the pressure off? Cooking and baking is supposed to be fun! What really matters is seeing thoroughly happy faces when somebody tastes your food. Wishing you lots of fun in the kitchen! – Liz
(images/text/recipe/video: liz and jewels)