Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday Fancies::Fall Favorites

Friday Fancies-Fall Favorites...try saying THAT five time fast!  :)

Happy Friday Pumpkins!  Hope you all had great weeks!  I know I am ready for a relaxing weekend...oh and finishing our hutch so I can reveal it on Monday!  Woo hoo!

Fall Favorites


This post started off with boots...the very boots I am lusting after this fall and then evolved to what you see above.  I just can't help it!

The Tory Burch boots, of course, are just gorgeous.  I'm seeing them everywhere and would LOVE to own a pair.  I'm thinking it's more realistic that I'll be purchasing these babies instead this fall.  I have them in black, but clearly need the congac!

I've also decided that I will get a poncho this fall.  I've been talking about them since the start of this blog {post found here}...I think it's high time I follow through.

Of course, other fall staples for me are the leopard flats, fur vest, structured tote, and fabulous gold jewelry.  One surprise staple for me are these tortoise shell glasses!  My girl Liz wears them just perfectly!  Lovin' the preppy chic appeal.  :)

What are your staples this fall?  Let me know!!

xo natasha


PS...Thanks to Tiffany and Kara...I just learned that my beloved Zara plaited shopper is back online to buy!!  Just bought the tan {natch}...which one is your favorite?!  :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Fall 5::A Thoughtful Place

Hello Friends!

I can't believe we're almost through September and officially in the midst of fall!  I've had so much fun seeing all the fall inspiration around blog land lately, especially here on the Fall 5 Series!  :)


I've got a very special treat for my final Fall 5 post!  The beautiful and talented Courtney from A Thoughtful Place is here to showcase her 5 favorite tablescapes!


I was fortunate enough to meet Courtney in July and we have quickly become close friends...sisters really!  We're both from Southern CA and I know we have many years of friendship ahead {and I'm so excited for our dates when I'm down south!}.  If you haven't checked out Courtney's blog, you are definitely missing out!  I can only hope to have a gorgeous home and family like hers one day!  :)  Please welcome Courtney!

***

One of my favorite parts of fall is entertaining. I think the crisp air, the changing leaves, and the thought of warm cider all lend so nicely to having people gather in your home. I have put together five ideas for your fall tabletop. I adore the tall branches in this first shot. Might be unrealistic for seeing others at the table, but you could easily adapt it for a side table or mantel. 







IMG_7868


IMG_8163

The above two images are tables I put together. Why not let your guests have fun with a paper table runner. While great for children, it's also proves really fun for the adults. Put a coloring tool in someone's hand and suddenly you have a very relaxed dinner party. Once Halloween passes, the mini pumpkins take on a whole new life with some gold spray paint. Inexpensive and simple for hosting during Thanksgiving. 

So here's to inviting friends and family over for good food, conversation, and all around good times. Do you have any fun tablescapes planned for fall?

Thanks for having me, Natasha. Honored to be hanging out at Schue Love!

***

I am just SO in love with her last setting...those golden pumpkins are simply divine.  Can't wait to host my first autumn dinner party now!  Thanks again to Courtney for being here today!


NOW it's your turn!  I invite all of you to link up your latest fall posts...link up below and showcase all that you're loving this fall!  And Halloween inspiration is more than welcome as well!  Great way to kick start the holidays!  :)

xo natasha

P.S. I am showcasing my surprise closet staple over at A Mischmashed Life today!  Check it out here!



Wednesday, September 28, 2011

OOTD = Dream Kitchen

This post is probably a stretch, but if you squint your eyes and really focus, I think you can see where I'm coming from.  Plus, I LOVE Cassie's decor inspired outfits, thus this idea evolved.

This is my OOTD...kind of a casual Friday look!

Blouse | Collective Conecepts
Skirt | J. Crew
Jean Jacket | Gap
Wedges | Steve Madden
Watch |  Michael Kors

And this is my dream kitchen!
White marble counters...black cabinet island...farmhouse sink...cool blue tiles.  
*Swoon*

See any resemblance? 
We've had a little heat this past week, so I had to take advantage of wearing my wedges...and skirt.  That skirt will soon be paired with some tights and boots.

And back to kitchens...I love the monochromatic look with hints of black.

 The dark counters on over the white cabinets are quite stunning too.

Sigh...one day!

And one last inspiration photo...this blouse is actually more of a tunic...very versatile...much like the color palette.

Do your outfits ever mirror your design aesthetic?  Do tell!

xo natasha

PS...the kitchen photos are part of my "For the Home" board on Pinterest.  Follow along!  :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Pumpkin Bars with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting

Oh Happy Day!  I got to bust out the pumpkin puree and the house has been smelling like fall ever since!  Pumpkin bars are my very favorite fall treat.  They're great with a glass of milk as a dessert or a cup of coffee in the morning.  


I like to kick mine up a notch by making cinnamon cream cheese frosting...you'll NEVER want cream cheese frosting any other way after trying these.  And the pumpkin bar is really almost like a cake...light, moist and fluffy.  This just melts in your mouth.  MM MM MM!

Adapted from Paula Dean

Bars
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 2/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup canola oil
  • 15-ounce can pumpkin
  • 2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
 Frosting
  • 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar {or to taste}
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Using an electric mixer at medium speed, combine the eggs, sugar, oil and pumpkin until light and fluffy. Stir together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Add the dry ingredients to the pumpkin mixture and mix at low speed until thoroughly combined and the batter is smooth.

Spread the batter into a greased 13 by 10-inch baking pan. Bake for 30 minutes. Let cool completely before frosting. Cut into bars.

To make the icing: Combine the cream cheese and butter in a medium bowl with an electric mixer until smooth. Add the sugar and mix at low speed until combined. Stir in the vanilla & cinnamon and mix again. Spread on cooled pumpkin bars.

Here's one more looksie!


Now the real question is...what should I use the remaining pumpkin puree for?  Let me know your favorite pumpkin recipe!
Hope you enjoy!  Bon Appetit!

xo natasha

Linked to Tasty Tuesdays

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hutch Progress & a Winner!

Happy Monday Everyone!

I had such a relaxing and yet productive weekend...really feels like we started the fall season off right!

One of the reasons I felt so productive is that we started painting our kitchen hutch!  Yay!  A lot of you weighed in on what color we should paint it, which was a fun to hear your thoughts on which direction we should go.  My good friend helped me "paint" the hutch in Photoshop and I thought I'd give a little teaser and also show where you all stood on color:

22 of you said we should paint it black!

VERY close behind was 21 votes for white.

To my surprise, I lot of you {9 to be exact} were partial to gray!

4 of you thought blue might look nice.

And 2 of you thought red might be a good choice.

Several weighed in that we should go for a green, or darker brown...or heck, just keep it the same!  

I'll wait to reveal what color we decided to go for, but I will say that you definitely changed my mind on what my original choice was...so that is exciting!  :)

Here's some progress...note that this is only the primer, so I'm not giving anything away!





Can't wait to show you the finished product!!!

And last but not least, I am very excited to announce the winner of the BluHour Giveaway!

Congratulations to #60!


Sarah from Total Basset Case!




She chose the Triple Drop Necklace...gorgeous!


Congratulations to Sarah and thank you SO much to all of you who entered!
xo natasha

Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday Fancies::Cozy Chic

It's Friday!  Yay for the weekend!  And yay for fall officially starting today!  Thanks again for everyone that linked up yesterday!  All of your posts have definitely gotten me in the mood for the season!  :)

Cozy Chic



This week, {av} suggested we put together a cozy fall look.  Well while the sweater may be cozy, this is defintiely a far cry for the typical cozy {and comfy} look!  But I have to say, I am LOVING the idea of this outfit, aren't you?
 First up, is this "cozy" rabbit fur Joseph {$1,995} sweater.  Yes, I know...I'm not an advocate of real fur, but the look {and I'm sure feel} of this sweater looks simply divine.  No worries pups, I won't be purchasing this baby...but I can dream!

And if it weren't already bad enough with the fur sweater, how about I throw in these sleek D&G {$932.35} leather pants!  I have a small crush on these pants, with the zipper at the ankle and the trouser look & feel.  Definitely a wardrobe staple.

These Olivia Collings {$3,175} earrings are gorgeous!  Love the vintage feeling and how elegant they are.

How HOT are these Sam Edelman {$250} booties?!  Love the stud and rhinestone detail on the back...so funky and fun.

Last...I am DYING to own this Zara {$149} tote.  Tiffany recently bought this gorgeous bag and I instantly went online to purchase it for myself...but alas, it appears to be sold out at the moment!  Le sigh...what I would DO to own this bag!!!

So there you have it...my take on cozy chic for the fall!  :)  

Any fun plans this weekend?  We're relaxing to the max.  Cannot wait!

xo natasha


{Click here for a chance to win a gorgeous piece of jewelry!}

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Fall 5::cornflake dreams

It's Thursday!!!  And of course I am excited to feature the 4th installment of...


Today, I am pleased to introduce all of you to Jillian from Cornflake Dreams.  Jillian is the talent behind my gorgeous blog design and I feel very fortunate to have connected with her early on in my blogging experience.  Her blog is full of inspiration...I'm especially loving her Wedding Wednesday posts...so be sure to stop by and say hi!
***

hello there! i am super excited to be included in natasha's fall feature. i used to be obsessed with summer.. i loved the clothesthe activities and being a june birthday baby didn't hurt. now that i am getting older i have started to appreciate fall. thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday and i could eat pumpkin pie year-round and fall fashion has me pretty excited for october and november. my fall five picks are four fashion essentials and one major baking flavor!




a huge thank you to miss. natasha for having me! please stop by cornflake dreams anytime for even more fashion, travel and design inspiration! {and don't miss my big 1yr blogging anniversary!! lots of giveaways, features, & guest posts all month}

xo, 
jillian

***
Leopard flats are the essence of fall in my opinion...of course so is pumpkin!  Yummmm!!

Now it's your turn!  What are you loving this fall?  Feel free to link up past, present or future fall inspired posts {the linky party will be up all weekend!}.  As always...I'm looking forward to see what you're all craving this season!  :)

xo natasha

psssst!  Don't forget to enter the BluHour jewelry giveaway here!  Only 4 more days until the winner is announced!



Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Falling...Falling...FALL!

Welp!  Fall is officially on Friday...can you hardly believe it?!  I know I can't!  I've made a couple little changes around the house in anticipation of the season...it's only the beginning!

 I'm a sucker for tiny pumpkins and gourds!

 Our fall mantel!

 White pumpkins and branches make a fall setting.

Still loving mercury glass...are you?

Ummm...I am also very excited that Glee came back into my life last night!  Of course, the Emmy's were scheduled perfectly!  It was fun seeing all my favorite Glee stars shine on the red carpet.







{even though she's not a regular...I will always cherish Gywn's performance on Glee!}

So tell me...are you ready for fall?  Did you watch Glee last night?!

xo natasha

P.S. Don't forget to get your fall links ready for my Fall 5 Series tomorrow!

P.P.S. If you haven't entered the BluHour jewelry giveaway, now's your chance!  Enter here!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Apricots with Basil Goat Cheese & Almonds

Thanks to everyone who entered the BluHour Giveaway yesterday!  You can enter to win all week long so head on over!  :)

Today, I am showcasing one of my very favorite fall treats::dried apricots!  These are not any normal apricots...they're home grown by our parent's neighbor and so so good!  Super dense and soft...and moist.  Store bought apricots simply cannot compete!


Kick it up a notch and add some goat cheese combined with basil, a marcona almond, and a drizzle of honey and voila!  This is one appetizer you will not soon forget!

Recipe from: My Recipes
  • 4 ounces fresh goat cheese such as Laura Chenel, at room temperature
  • About 2 tsp. milk
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh basil
  • 40 dried apricots, preferably Blenheim*
  • 40 almonds, preferably Marcona or Marchini*
  • 2 teaspoons honey
1. Mix together cheese, 2 tsp. milk, and basil with a wooden spoon until spreadable. Thin with more milk if necessary.
2. Spread a heaping 1/4 tsp. cheese on each apricot and top each with an almond. Drizzle with honey.


 Simple and easy...my kind of app!  What's your favorite fall appetizer?

Hope you enjoy!  Bon Appetit!

xo natasha

Linked to: Tasty Tuesday
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