Wednesday, February 29, 2012

spotty judgement.

Pins and Needles collared button down with tie; realitee crop; Merona cardigan; vintage skinny belt
In an attempt at upper-body Vivienne Westwood mimicry a la the last little montage of this rant (and, I'm gonna be totally transparent with you here, this outfit really only happened because I wanted to wear all of the polka dots at once, and I am doing my best to make it seem like a conscious fashion-forward decision by blaming citing inspiration from Ms. W), voila.  Lots o' dots, ya feel me?  Big time layering, a tie at the neck, and dusty purple.  Check, check, check.

Such a goob.

Also double-pattern cuffed sleeves because I love that.  I almost cuffed my pants as well, but then I thought, "Is that too much cuffing?"  And then I thought, "Is there such a thing as too much cuffing?"  And then I thought,"...Yes there is."

Cool story, Hansel.

Anyway.  Yesterday was National Pancake Day, which technically meant you could get a free short stack at IHOP but that is just so not my jam right now.  I whipped up a batch of lemon ricotta bad boys with raspberry puree instead.  I'm sure you will be able to feast your eyes (and with a small amount of prep on your part, your stomach) on them very very soon.

Monday, February 27, 2012

piled high on bread.

A riff on the veggie burger as orchestrated by Cara of Big Girls Small Kitchen?
One thousand times yes.

Yes because I developed a meatless burger obsession during the one year that I ate in college dining halls and was a vegetarian simultaneously.  Both periods of my life have ended (I see you, bacon and my own oven), but the love affair with veggie burgers has not waned.

Yes because they are so easy and so SO good tasting, I had to reason with myself out loud in order to actually MAKE the "dough" into patties and cook them because I was content going at the whole damn bowl of it with a spoon.

Yes because no meat on Fridays of Lent, duh (a hipper version of me would say: #catholicschool #sorryi'mnotsorry #hashtag). 

Yes because you probably have all of this sitting around in your kitchen right now anyway!  I had to buy a can of beans and that was it.  Easy breezy beautiful, Covergirl I don't know, just make yourself a white bean burger, okkkrr?

White Bean Burgers
makes four patties

1 can white beans, strained and rinsed 
1/4 cup olive oil
1 medium white onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon thyme
2 tablespoons grated parmesan
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Caramelize onions over low heat with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste.  Cook down for 10 - 15 minutes.  Remove from heat.

In a medium bowl, mash white beans, thyme, parmesan, lemon juice, breadcrumbs and egg together.  Add onions and additional salt and pepper if necessary.  Whole beans should not be visible, but don't be afraid of chunks.  Embrace the chunks.   This is not Cream of White Bean Burger Soup.

With slightly wet hands, form the "dough" into four round patties.  With the remaining olive oil at the bottom of an oven-safe pan over medium heat, brown the patties on each side, about four minutes per side.  Then slide the pan into the oven, and cook for an additional 10 - 15 minutes, or until cooked through.

Serve on a bun with the best topping combination you can think of / whatever you have in your kitchen / whatever you can find in your fridge now that the lightbulb in there has burnt out.  True story.  Its real sad.  I think its my fridge's way of telling me to stop getting milk for my 2 AM.  REGARDLESS: I did mine up with a sprouted 7-grain bun (oh you fancy, huh?), hummus, spinach and tomato and was a happy ladyclam indeed.

For another Friday-acceptable burger, see my under the sea love explosion here.

Friday, February 24, 2012

weeks on weeks on weeks.

Topshop Unique.  Left is what I imagine my ideal college wardrobe to be.  Ugh that coat!  Yes.  Right includes some mixed media sleeves (see Muppet arms, featured below), and some dominatrixtastic boots.

So New York Fashion Week happened.  And London's Fashion Week.

Now it's in Milan?  Then it goes to Paris?  It just keeps moving.  No stopping ever.  Or eating.  Its like a traveling circus of beautiful aliens and SLRs.

I don't know.  I was talking to someone the other day about how this blog got its name, and I told her (because its true...I could have skipped this whole introduction and started the sentence here:) I really loved the idea of map and traveling imagery for the site.  I didn't want it to come across as didactic in any way.  I wanted the world (or at least my mom, dutiful follower that she is) to know that in no way do I consider myself an expert at anything.  I'm not even very well versed in most things.  I am lost, often.  This is a blog on which I traipse through my closet and my kitchen and make big time messes in both places.  Life, amirite?

So I feel like I'm either not allowed to talk about Fashion Week, or supposed to know everything about what's going on.

And instead of either of those things, I'm going to just smash together a lot of pictures and write sassy comments underneath them.  How do we feel about that course of action, do we feel good about that course of action?

Alright, then.  Away we go.

House of Holland, I love you so much.  Ever since I fell in love with your legwear.  THIS though.  Full embrace of houndstooth, primary colors, and the leather bellbottom, which really should never have left our lives.  Was it ever in our lives?  No?  That was an error on our part.  On the right we've got a Sesame Street character that made me remember the Michael Kors New York show, which was a lot of black and red.  My favorite being:

This skirt.  There were also a number of wonderfully fringy buffalo checked poncho/robe hybrids that sort of looked like picnic blankets with arms?  Clutch.

Here's the rest of my Topshop Unique favorites.  Just so good.  I would wear that dress AND that velvet overall situation!  Probably not together!  But I might be able to be talked into it!  This whole show was beautiful and everyday classy.

Marc Jacobs.  I have a question for you.  At what point were you like YES I've GOT IT we'll make hats that the model could fit her entire BODY inside of and we'll also make them FURRY oh and ALSO what about LEPRECHAUN PILGRIM SHOES?!?  Bedazzled of course.  What?  What?!  But even looking past the show-cessories, these dresses are shaped like bowling pins.  I feel too many feelings.

If we're gonna talk about weird show decisions, I am going to lead us on a very small stroll down memory lane.  For weirdness' sake.  So we can collectively tilt our heads and say, "Ok?  It was a choice."

First stop, Givenchy ss2012.  And the septum piercing decision.  Yum.  By which I mean why.  Why.

Exactly a year ago, London Fashion Week for Fall 2011 meant Topshop Unique turned everyone into a mouse.  Including my fav.  I am not against this.  I like this, even.  Unobtrusive.  Maybe a little severe for 9 AM class.  But I tend to think brushed hair is too severe for 9 AM, so.  Grain of salt.

End of memory lane tour.

Back to House of Holland.  SO MUCH YES ON THE LEFT dear GOD.  The tights.  Yes.  Yes.  I want you on my body right now.  Peaks of green are everything that matter to me.  And on the right, as promised, more Muppet arms.  This is apparently a thing.  See below:

Theyskens' Theory.  Double duty animal life upper body warm-keeping.  Hmm, Kendra?  What was that sentence?  No one knows.  I can't write properly when faced with the appendages of a strawberry blonde gorilla.

And finally, closing us out is the Vivienne Westwood Red Label.  Cool leg situations (sometimes funky drawings of symbols, a la top left), kickass layering, classy accessories (long live the neck scarf) (also ribboned fedora = so sassy), and totally doable pattern mixing.  Its not called Ready to Wear for nothing.

if you live where i live, this will mean more.

My culinary tour of Evanston, Illinois is now live on Small Kitchen College.  Take a look, disagree, email me angrily about the fact that I omitted Rollin' to Go, etc.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

metal detection.

Living Doll shawl; Gilligan & O'Malley slip; Hue tights; Frye boots; too many bracelets and pins (left) / the same, but all the while robotically shaking hair from face (right)
All the things that I should be doing are way less appealing to me than wearing seventeen hundred thousand bracelets, striped socks, and a slip and eating tofu all day long so...I did the latter instead.

When it was finally time to emerge into the world, I added tights, a lace-lined silk shawl thing, black boots, and some serious flair.  My mom's old pins / prayer hands my second grade teacher gave us when my class got our First Communion (Catholic school, whattup) definitely outweighed the buttons (the Mount Vernon souvenir one is my fav), so I didn't look tooooo much like an overzealous restaurant employee.  I hope.

Here are some other (fancier) (cooler) (prettier) (yeah, just better) people doing the sleepwear for outerwear thing:  Rumi Neely in a pajama top / Leandra Medine doing a mismatched top and bottom thing / Stella McCartney's kickass silk duo / and this.  Unclear.

Also?  The roll-out-of-bed-and-just-go-about-your-day-in-what-you're-already-wearing trend works best if you don't sleep naked.  I don't know.  Thought I should mention it.  Just in case.

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Cooperative shirt; gifted earrings; BDG high-waisted pants; Steve Madden booties
I told you I have a Valentine's Day shirt.  It's an extra large that I bought at Crossroads...fits like a tent but there are BRIGHT PINK SHOULDER EPAULETTE WANNABES and it buttons up the BACK.  You feel me?  It had to happen.

What did you do on Valentine's Day?  Besides shouting excitedly about my first Big Girls Small Kitchen: College post, I did some Chicago traversing, mid-day Lady Gregory patronizing (by which I mean we gave the establishment patronage, not that we behaved condescendingly toward it; my love for their chicken club is true and vast), and serious painting.  Large scale Valentine's Day art projects.  Really everything there is.

PS: The above is a photograph in which my left hand and right foot are doing strange, non-human alien things.  Thank you for your time.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

a new thing i do!!!!!

Speaking of pesto.
I promise this is the end of it.


I contribute to this really cool blog called Big Girls Small Kitchen under their College tab.
Its a site about being twenty-something and having a kitchen only big enough for your body, a few mismatched forks and ONE pot, and still trying to have culinary adventures.

Its awesome.

My first post, on gluten-free pizza, went live today!

Czech it out, humanoids.


A boy I like was under the weather the other day, so I hightailed it to his apartment in Andersonville with a rolling suitcase full of cheese.

I just...I mean, this is the kind of life I lead.  The kind where cheese suitcases are entirely acceptable.
Encouraged, even.
He was sick.  And my first response was to pack my panini grill.
Maybe I should be embarrassed.

Please find the recipe for walnut-basil pesto below and recreate it at your earliest convenience, by which I mean NOW.  Pesto has one negative side effect and it is that you will find yourself slathering it over everything in your kitchen including but not limited to baby carrots, radishes, rice cakes, and your own face.

Of course, it is also killer when paired with crusty French bread, fresh mozzarella, grated swiss and gruyere, thick-sliced tomatoes, and crispy pancetta.

Ugh.  Plus tomato soup and beer.  UGH.  It's a recipe for recovery if I've ever known one.

Walnut-Basil Pesto
Remember this?  I'm a creature of habit.

4 packed cups of basil, 
1/4 cup olive oil 
1/3 cup shredded parmesean
1/2 cup chopped walnuts 
2 cloves garlic, minced
the juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper

Blend all ingredients in a blender or food processor.  Eat entire contents of blender with a spoon.  Repeat.

Oh, there will be a Valentine's Day post.  I have a Valentine's Day shirt.  It will come out for the occasion.  I just needed to start this day of love featuring the green glop that makes my world go round because frankly, hide yo kids, hide yo wife, cuz I've been putting pesto on errythang out here.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

hot blacks.

American Apparel shirt; Kimchi Blue skirt; vintage necklace and belt; Frye boots
So a lot of fashion bloggers whom I admire have recently posted videos of themselves on their pages (mostly beautifully edited little things announcing their upcoming collaborations with various lines and brands / la dee dahhhh / the life of a fashion blogger is SER HERRD) and I've discovered that its really weird to.  Um.  Hear them speak.

Its like, here is a person whose face I look at every single day, whose writing style I know and understand, and whose fashion sense I find exciting and cool, and prior to this moment I had no idea what they SOUNDED LIKE.  And it THROWS ME OFF, man.  I don't know.  I don't know.  Maybe I was expecting everyone to be British.  There's just some sort of incongruence.  Its funky.  I almost want to make them stop moving and stop speaking and go back to being in the pictures where they're frozen and silent and I know what's going on.  Is this a strange response I'm having?  I'll stop.

Black on black on upholstery patterned black on a weeknight.  A vintage bauble, patterned tights, boots made for walking.  Or walkin'.  Whatevs.

Outside, everything but the wackohair fades into the night.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

i have something to say really quickly.

Almond milk +
Agave nectar +

Heated and frothed,

Tastes like you're drinking a friggin cookie.

That is all.

The picture is unrelated.
It's wood.
Milk isn't photogenic.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

hollaback youngin.

Sweater from the theatre department costume shop sale, so all I know about it is that it was previously worn in a production of Footloose; Hue tights; Frye boots; Revlon nail color in Cinna-snap


Remember in kindergarten when it was the 100th day of school and everyone had to bring in 100 of something?  Beads or pennies or pieces of macaroni?

Here is my offering on this very special day: 100 exclamation points.


You're welcome.  And here's to 100 100's more.

Inspired by a kickass old lady blog and its upcoming documentary, I broke out what can only have begun its life as a grandma sweater, and what I'm sure will continue to be a part of my rotation until I inevitably become one of the heavily-jeweled and supafly wrinkled wonders exhibited therein.

New boots.  So happy.  

Can't stop looking at 'em.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

a riddle.

Q. How do you make two pounds of carrots disappear?
A. Carrot fries.

Step 1: Make them.

Like an army of little orange stumps.


I know.  This looks like something from space.  But I actually really like it for occasions like this (and for my panini maker) when the alternative would be to toss the carrots in olive oil (or use a pat of butter to get a good crust on a sandwich).  It works wonders without being overbearingly fat-tastic, and you have careful control over portion.

Sprinkle with whatever seasonings you like (I am partial to garlic salt and pepper, but you do you knowwhati'msayin?).

BROIL.  15 minutes on high.

Step 2 (Did you forget we were doing the step thing?  Me too, for a second): After they cool, put the carrot fries into a tupperware container.

Step 3: Sit on your couch with a book and proceed to consume...all of them.

I should be turning orange any day now.  But real talk: a super addictive way to get your beta carotene, and a fun alternative to french fries as a side dish for sandwiches and burgers.  Dip them in hummus!  Or whatever dip you like!  Do whatever makes you happy!  I support you in all endeavors, carrot fry and not carrot fry related.

PS: eat dessert.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

any coupon works.


Endless possibilities await me between its metallic crimping jaws, so many grilled things, so much meat with lines.

The inaugural journey / maiden voyage / first try was last night, when I made a fresh mozzarella, spinach, tomato and olive tapenade panini.

I could have made the tapenade, but I didn't.
So.  There's that.
No matter.
It was so good.

Get in my BODY.

I will now continue reading Xaipe: seventy-one poems by e.e. cummings (You could tell a book like this was open on my lap, couldn't you.  My syntax be wack, yo.  Is that normal?  I don't know anything anymore) and researching melty sandwich combinations.  Any and all suggestions are appreciated.