shoe love // espadrilles from naguisa

I think by now we all know espadrilles are the shoe of the summer, but have you seen these beauties from Naguisa?? Designed in Barcelona, these sandals are incredibly unique with details like metallic leathers, brightly colored knits, and hand stitching. I love how founders Pablo Izquierdo and Claudia Perez Polo have totally taken a traditional, iconic shoe and made it exciting and new again. shoe love // espadrilles from naguisa The level of detail is just so exquisite. I especially love the use of mixed materials for all of the styles. Plus, the color palettes are really great. My absolute favorites, the ribboned espadrilles, are actually available now from Anthropologie (and 20% off right now) which has me dreaming up spring-time outfits already… shoe love // espadrilles from naguisa images via Naguisa

portrait of a cocktail // bombay government punch

This is not your grandmother’s punch. Bombay Government Punch is a deliciously fierce elixir concocted by the English Governor of Bombay, Sir John Gayer, back in 1694. Throw out your notions of dowdy pink punch, and usher in a rich and complex cocktail, that just happens to be served in a huge bowl.

I know, I know. This might not be the prettiest punch to look at. (I happen to enjoy its beautiful amber glow.) But I promise everyone who sips this for the first time says the exact same thing, with the exact same wide-eyed expression. Whoa! This is delicious! And then they guzzle it. There are so many layers of flavor to this punch, it’s impossible to not go back for more.

Did you know that making punch is a bit of a science experiment? A true punch follows the proper proportions. For example, our punch here is based on the oldest and most classic ratio: 1 sour (lime juice), 2 sweet (mandarin orange syrup), 3 strong (the booze), and 4 weak (black tea). Once you have this ratio down, you can make any quantity of punch, like maybe just cocktails for two, or you can start to sub out the different elements. Instead of lime juice you could use lemon, instead of black tea, try green. The possibilities are endless!

portrait of a cocktail // bombay government punch

There are a lot of steps to this punch, but in the end it’s so worth it. Instead of having to mix drinks on the spot for guests, everyone can just help themselves. The ice block is beautiful and, as it melts, the mandarin slices begin to garnish the drink.

Ingredients for punch:

  • 13 oz lime juice (about 13 limes)
  • 3 cups mandarin orange syrup (directions below)
  • 1 bottle dark rum (750 ml bottle)
  • 1/2 bottle VSOP cognac (750 ml bottle)
  • 6 1/2 cups water
  • 3 black tea bags
  • 20 dashes of orange bitters
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 ice block (directions below)

Boil 6 1/5 cups of water. Once boiling, turn off heat and steep 3 tea bags for 5 minutes. After the 5 minutes, remove tea bags and let tea cool to room temperature. Combine cooled tea and syrup in punch bowl with lime juice, rum and cognac. Add bitters and sprinkle in cinnamon. Give it a strong stir to make sure the cinnamon doesn’t clump. Place in the refrigerator for at least an hour, but no longer than a day if you’ve prepped ahead of time. About 30 minutes before serving remove punch from your fridge and add the ice block. This last step is important. The punch is much better once the ice has melted a little bit.

portrait of a cocktail // bombay government punch

Ingredients for mandarin orange syrup:

  • 3 cups demerara or turbinada sugar (This is real brown sugar and can be found at just about any grocery store.)
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 5 mandarins, thinly sliced

Combine all ingredients in a sauce pan over low heat. Watch the pot closely, once it reaches a simmer remove from heat. Stir occasionally to make sure all the sugar is dissolved and to help release juice and oils from the mandarins. Let syrup cool completely.

Ingredients for ice block:

  • water
  • 7 mandarins, thinly sliced
  • loaf pan

Place 1 layer of mandarin slices at the bottom of the loaf pan and enough water to just cover the slices. Place in the freezer about 2 hours, then add another layer of slices and water. Let this layer freeze for 2 hours. Repeat these steps until the loaf pan is full. I recommend doing this the day before so that it has all night to set and freeze. To remove the ice block from the pan turn it upside in your sink and run hot water over the pan until you hear the block fall out.

portrait of a cocktail // bombay government punch

Cin cin!

P.S. More cocktail recipes!

pastel fashion favorites

Yesterday on Pinterest I miiight have gotten a little carried away. I was shopping for the perfect pair of espadrilles and suddenly found myself pinning loads and loads of pastel fashion picks. Plus, who doesn’t love scrolling through their pinterest boards and seeing everything look cohesive and lovely? From accessories to t-shirt dresses to strappy sandals, all I could think about was putting together some of my favorite pastel looks. The color palette (if you can even call it that), varies from peachy pales to fresh, but not optic whites, with touches of all metallics and maybe, just maybe a blushy shell pink.  After my crazy pinning spree (it’s almost like I blacked out or something), I decided to round up some of my top picks for this spring-time trend. My absolute favorite? This embellished eyelet cover-up dress from Rhode Resort, but of course!

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stay at home club

Oof, Friday, what took you so long? This tee from the Stay At Home Club sums up my plans for the weekend perfectly. The truth is that I’ve been burning the candle at both ends. Between balancing a full-time job, this blog, and an ever-full social calendar, I’ve just not been taking care of myself. And, boy, am I feelin’ the repercussions this week. I’m exhausted. This weekend, I have one thing on my mind: hibernation domination. But what about the following week? It always feels like I can’t keep up, that I am eternally one step behind. The dishes pile up, the floor doesn’t get swept, and my laundry becomes a mountain. Something I’ve thought about doing lately is setting days that are to be treated as “date nights,” but for myself. These are sacred days, days when I will not make plans, but rather focus on the quiet time that I clearly need. I’m a person who requires frequent battery charging, so to speak. Because of this, my goal is to take Sunday and Wednesday for myself. I want these days to sit on the couch with my tiny zoo, clean the kitchen, change my sheets… things like that. I admit, I am one who finds peace in domesticity, so these ‘chores’ are vital to helping me feel more grounded.

So, I’d love to know… what helps you stay balanced and grounded?

image via Stay At Home Club

party provisions from Food52

Whether you’re setting your table for Easter, brunch, or just cocktails with the girls, serve it up in style with these adorable and handsome party provisions from Food52. With the goal of “better kitchens for everyone” in mind, Food52 has carefully curated an assortment of serveware, barware, and even party decorations that make for great gifts (or a treat for yourself…). I love the amount of detail on these pieces: from a gentle swoosh of glaze on a platter, to pony-topped drink stirrers, these pieces are like modern heirlooms.

party provisions from Food52
I love the idea of setting a table and using such a wide range of materials, like copper, clear and colored glass, brass, even dipped enamel. Plus, it’s always nice to throw in a punch of color to perk up a neutral and sophisticated table.

party provisions from Food52

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casual bohemian style

I sort of feel like I’m at a crossroads in my wardrobe. I just turned 29, so I am more aware of my age than ever before. I live in a city with micro-climates, meaning the temperature can swing drastically depending on time of day and location. And of course, I’m in a new city and new job with a totally new vibe. For all these reasons, I’ve decided to start redefining my personal style. As expected, I started a pinterest board titled Jojotastic Style, mostly so I can get an overview of the looks I gravitate towards. Based on these visuals and a quick chat with my friend Jess, I’d define my style as “casual bohemian” with a focus on really unique and special details, great fabrics, and sophisticated color palette. Sounds great, right?

casual boho stylecasual boho style
I am eternally drawn to flowy, hyper-detailed white top, but now it’s more about what they are paired with: destroyed boyfriend jeans, cropped leather skirts, and the like. Plus, a leather jacket never hurts in a pinch, amiright?

casual boho style
I have to say though, this new personal style revolves heavily around denim… and good denim at that. It’s all about silhouette, wash, and texture.

casual boho style
In terms of color, you can see it’s a pretty muted palette, but there are a few punches. I really want to keep color in the really special pieces: a vintage, embroidered kimono, great shibori dyed scarves, piles of jewelry. This sort of makes me want to purge my closet of print and pattern so I can focus on sophisticated neutrals in great fabrics.

casual boho style
Lastly, the accessories: architectural heels, classic and crisp sneakers, massive totes. Keep it clean and simple, but still very striking.

links: 1 / 2 / 3 /4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 (see more on my pinterest board, too!)

from the sketchbook of Rebecca Atwood

As a longtime fan of textile designer and artist Rebecca Atwood, today I am more than pleased to share this glimpse into her working process and sketchbooks. During one of her afternoon sketchbook sessions, Rebecca snapped these photos to give us a peek. Rather than muddling up her intent, I’d rather let Rebecca speak for her own work:

“I like to work on several sketchbooks at once as I work with watercolor and gouache and don’t like to wait for pages to dry.  I find this keeps me moving quickly and just getting down loose ideas.  I try not to think too much about what I do in my sketchbook – it’s a place to play and not worry if it doesn’t turn into something I actually love.  It’s a good place for me to test out ideas, colors, motifs, etc. ”

from the sketchbook of Rebecca Atwood
“A lot of the time I paint similar motifs or versions of the same idea as I warm up.  Then I always try to do something that’s a little different, too, of course.  For me keeping sketchbooks is a really important part of my process.  I often return to them well after I did the work to remember ideas and concepts I had. Sometimes something I put in there doesn’t really resonate with me, but months later there’s a connection.”

from the sketchbook of Rebecca Atwood
As a designer myself, I can totally identify with Rebecca’s process. I think that often times creatives like us tend to hoard because you just never know what can become inspiration. And, now that I have seen how this method works for Rebecca, I am extra keen on turning to my sketchbook every day, just to see what happens. Thanks for all the of inspiration, Rebecca!

from the sketchbook of Rebecca Atwood
photos by Rebecca Atwood

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