Monday, July 21, 2014

New Home Wish List

New Home Wish List
01. Anthropologie, 02. Society6, 03. Anthropologie, 04. Target, 05. Jonathan Adler, 06. IKEA, 07. Terrain, 08. Anthropologie, 09. Urban Outfitters, 10. eBay

As we settle into our new home, I'm striving to decorate in an invested and enduring way, choosing pieces and making decisions that feel sophisticated and timeless.

As with fashion, I'm often drawn to masculine things with whimsical touches. I want our home to feel industrial and luxe but with plenty of softness, humor, and warmth.

As for colors, I'm really excited about slate-y grays, woody browns, and milky whites, with pops of metallics.

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Friday, July 18, 2014

New Things to Come

Mirror selfie in our new house

We closed on our new home last month and we've been renovating and moving in all this month. It's an exciting, busy time. Beyond that, I'm also focusing a lot lately on shifting my writing career up a notch: writing more, submitting more, and hopefully publishing more.

All of this means new and exciting things for this blog. Very soon, I plan to launch a website where I can collect all my projects together: writing, blogging, photography, comedy, podcasting. At the same time, this blog is going to get a facelift and a new brand identity.

In the four years that I've been writing it, Fashion is Evolution has evolved far beyond its humble fashion-focussed beginning. From recipes to DIY projects to travelogues, I've enjoyed posting about a variety of lifestyle topics, and I expect the evolution to continue, especially with a new home to decorate.

So, in the very near future, Fashion is Evolution will become Bookish & Belle, a larger, greater project full of everything you've come to expect and even more.

Your support and continued readership during this exciting transition means so much to me. I can't wait for you to see what I've got in store.

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Friday, July 11, 2014

June Ins and Outs: What I Bought and Read Last Month

June Ins and Outs

June reading was full of both triumphs and disappointments.

Dark Places was extremely engrossing; I liked it even better than Gone Girl, which so many people raved about, and I'm eager to read Gillian Flynn's other novel, Sharp Objects.

Nick Hornby's A Long Way Down was every bit as good as About a Boy and High Fidelty (which is to say awesome) with the bonus that I hadn't already seen the movie so I didn't know where the plot was going.

I tore through Astonish Me faster than I've torn through anything in a while. I'd definitely recommend it to anyone with even a passing interest in ballet and anyone who loves a good multi-generational, multi-narrator story.

I listened to Meryl Streep read The Testament of Mary. It might be the world's perfect audiobook. Her performance is incredible and the language of the book is so poetic and arresting. Plus, the whole thing is only three and a half hours. I listened to it one morning at work while prepping for inventory, and I've been re-listening to it as I fall asleep most nights since then. I keep picturing Streep performing it was a one-woman show. Now that would bring down the house!

Shine Shine Shine, a very strange and strangely beautiful book made me realize that one of my favorite "cross-genres" is "science-fiction-romance". Her and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind are two of my favorite movies, and Shine Shine Shine shares their strange loveliness and sense of futuristic intimacy.

Attachments is a sweet and breezy love story. I really liked how, just as in Rainbow Rowell's Eleanor and Park, the main characters aren't typical romantic-comedy-leading-man-and-woman types. The woman is described several times as having "very wide hips" which the man finds attractive, and his social life is mainly comprised of playing Dungeons and Dragons.

Since Catherine Called Birdy is still one of my favorite books of all time (and another that I like to listen to, tuning in and out, as I fall asleep), I've made an effort lately to check out Karen Cushman's other work. Unfortunately, I found The Midwife's Apprentice to be so boring that I didn't even finish it. Figuring that it might be because that book was aimed at an even younger audience than Catherine Called Birdy, I decided to give Matilda Bone a try. It was better, but it just didn't hit me the way Catherine Called Birdy did. Maybe it's simply because I'm an adult now. But, since I still get a kick out of Catherine Called Birdy, I think it's more likely because Matilda Bone isn't as funny and because the main character struggles to overcome piousness and narrow-mindedness, which isn't as interested as watching Catherine strive to find her place in the world, tempering her wildness without losing herself.

I knew Dead Until Dark would be trashy, but I thought it would be more fun. The camp wasn't tempered with anything more substantial like it is in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and, while I liked the setting, I didn't find any of the characters to be very interesting.

Them was good but didn't blow me away like Ronson's The Psychopath Test did. I'm really looking forward to the book he's working on now about public shaming. I think that topic is right in the zone of what he does really well, and the specificity of it will keep it tighter that Them, a book about extremists (defined as anyone who has been called an "extremist").

While I enjoyed the photos and doodles in Alexa Chung's It, I didn't enjoy the meandering substancelessness. I did, however, enjoy the opportunity to use the word "substancelessness" just now.

We closed on our house on June 25th, so I bought a few decorating books and I've reaquested about 20 more from the library. More to come soon on what our new house and this new stage of life will mean for the blog. I'm excited!

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Monday, June 23, 2014

Our Wedding Film

I'm very excited to finally share our wedding video with you. Studio Z did a lovely job capturing so many beautiful moments and editing them together to fit perfectly with music. I've watched this a few times in the last couple days, and I still tear up each time as I remember so vividly the emotions I felt on that day. Marrying my best friend was the best thing I've ever done, and I'm grateful to have this film to help us remember all those special moments for the rest of our lives. 

I hope you enjoy this gimps at our wedding day.

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Yummy Recipe: Peanut Butter and Jelly Pie with Saltine Crust

Peanut butter and jelly pie with Saltine Crust

I recently got this book, and I've been really inspired by all her ideas for creative pie flavors. Last week, I made this peanut butter and jelly pie for a family birthday dinner, and it was a big hit.

I only strayed from Allison Kaye's recipe in a couple places: using strawberry jam over her preferred grape and decorating the top of the pie with a drizzle of melted peanut butter instead of chopped peanuts. I think the drizzle looks really cute.

about 30 saltine crackers
8 tablespoons butter, melted
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
6 oz. cream cheese
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (plus another 1/4 cup for garnishing)
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 cup strawberry jelly (or your preferred flavor)

Step 01. Preaheat the over to 350ºF. Grind the crackers to smooth crumbs in the food processor and mix with melted butter. Pat into the bottom of a pie pan. Chill for 10 minutes and then back for 10 minutes.
Step 02. Whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Set aside. Mix together cream cheese, peanut butter, and powdered sugar. Combine with whipped cream until fully blended.
Step 03. Spread peanut butter mixture over crust and chill.
Step 04. Melt jelly in a saucepan over medium-high heat until it is a consistent, liquidy texture throughout. Pour melted jelly over peanut butter mixture and continue to chill pie.
Step 05. Melt remaining 1/4 cup peanut butter until it is a consistent, liquidy texture throughout. Pour into a measuring cup on any vessel with a spout. Drizzle slowly over jelly-covered pie. Continue to chill pie until set. Serve chilled.

Peanut butter and jelly pie with Saltine Crust
Peanut butter and jelly pie with Saltine Crust
Peanut butter and jelly pie with Saltine Crust

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