Tuesday, 31 December 2013

At the movies

Since last spring (April or March) Le Boyfriend and I have been “members” of the movie theatre. The membership has changed our life; from going to the movies once in two months we enjoy movies on big screen now on a weekly basis. The last day of the Old Year (today) always is a good time to look back at the past twelve months and to learn something one way or another, right? This year's  lesson: my top 9 movies, one for each month that Le Boyfriend and I have been “movie members”.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty - Blue Jasmine - The Great Gatsby
Gravity - Dead Man Down - Prisoners
Malavita - The Iceman - Disconnect
Why they're the best? Let’s put it this way, there are a few things all the movies have in common: great acting. Other things that make them my favourites: great stories, realism (sometimes in spite of surrealistic features) and lovely, dreamy, nice, cool ... settings that make the movies true pieces of art.

P.S. Happy New Year!

 source pic. 2: cinenews.be & allocine.fr

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Back Beauty


Christmas miracles do happen; I was there when it did earlier this week. The Delvaux Pin bag (this one) was not even involved. What happened instead? It was late at night on Christmas Day when another present (earlier that day and also the night before (Christmas Eve) I’d received a few gifts already) presented itself. Nothing miraculous so far, I know, but the tide is about to turn: when the wrapping paper got off a vintage Louis Vuitton Soho backpack came out. 
If you know that I’ve wished for this bag to be mine ever since I was fourteen years old I suppose you see why this happening felt like a Christmas miracle to me. What makes the bag even more special nowadays: this legendary Louis Vuitton design is out of production and the only way to get such a brown back(pack) beauty is second hand shopping. In other words: the bag is a true vintage item. Anyway, I can’t but try to give my "lifelong-dream" bag the best second life it could get.

P.S. Did you have a miraculous Christmas too?

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Puzzle love


I L.O.V.E. and enjoy solving crosswords (i.e. trying to). Last weekend I discovered that instead of using a whole phrase to talk about this passion, it can be done in one word too: cruciverbalist. (Oxford definition: “someone who enjoys or is skilled at solving crosswords”.)
So let’s start over: I’m a cruciverbalist. In practice this means that every magazine, every newspaper and all other printed media items that go through my hands are screened for the famous word games. No matter how difficult they are, I give every puzzle a try. Please note that I say TRY because, you see, the thing is, even after all my practicing I’m still unable to complete most of the word puzzles correctly. (It’s like Oxford says: “... enjoys OR is skilled at solving ...”)

Anyway, you’re wondering why I’m telling you all this? First of all I made a Christmas-wall-word-puzzle, as a means of combining two passions of mine (Christmas and crosswords) in one “creation”. (It’s what you see in the picture above.) Second of all: in last weekend’s newspaper I read about the centenary of published crosswords. (The first is said to have appeared in The New York Times on 21.12.1913.) After some research on the internet I said to myself “why not bore my readers with funny facts like this?” In the end the blog has been all about Christmas lately so any other topic must look more appealing to you ... right?

P.S. Now I’m done with Christmas decorations blogging. I’ll get back to you about that later ... next year, somewhere mid October or begin November I guess.

sources general informationhttp://www.theguardian.com/crosswords/2013/dec/20/100-years-crosswords-first-new-york

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Collector's items

I’m a collector. Not of one thing in particular but of all beautiful, useful things. Le Boyfriend likes to make jokes about it and doesn’t get how treasures like shells from the beach or coloured autumn leaves from the park can ever come in handy at home. No need to say that he didn’t believe a word of what I said about the functionality of the gigantic pine cones that I found in France last summer.  
Being a collector of beautiful things I just knew these natural beauties would get a second life one day in the near future (i.e. when winter would be here, basically meaning now). How many jokes I’ve heard about it ever since, you don’t want to know. However, looking at the mantelpiece in the dining room at this very moment my roomie can’t but admit that I was right about reusing the pine cones. Thanks to pinterest for some handy tips I managed to make the garland that you see in the picture above. 
Rudolph and winter stars + brown paper bag
Stocking nice wrapping paper is something I do too, you know because it is very deco-recyclable too. Look at this (picture above): a paper-bag-wrapping-paper garland that I rigged up last week ... just to get Christmas in the air for real.

P.S. A true source of inspiration when getting your place Christmas proof is The inspired room. Plenty of DIY tips and tricks there.

Friday, 13 December 2013

Hibernation

From the verb hibernate, defined in the Oxford Dictionary as "spend the winter in a dormant state". Anyway, Elle B. is dreaming about it right now, hence the lack of real blogstuff.
The perfect sleepy winter would look like this:
funny cards @ www.twobadmice.com
P.S. Have a nice weekend!

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Tree talk


What about a recycled Christmas tree? I thought, and I decided to give it a try. Apart from reusing last year’s golden decorations (ribbons and small Christmas bulbs) gift bags that I’ve assembled over the years are “on duty” too. Their second life consists of, well ... hanging in the X-mas tree.
the specials: angel & sheep
Let me explain to you the “gift bags”. Basically it comes down to this: I’m a huge fan of the French statement jewellery brand Reminiscence and over the years that I’ve been together with Le Boyfriend I’ve built a Reminiscence arsenal of my own (all gifts from him). The Rem-branded jewellery always comes in Tiffany Blue gift bags; having received like ... I lost count to be honest so let’s say countless Rem items I was stuck with a whole bunch of blue bags in a box somewhere in a cupboard. To make the blue beauties useful and to justify my “collecting” (I’m a keeper) to my roomie I decided to hang the bags in this year’s Christmas tree. So um ... not only will we have a golden New Year a blue Christmas is now assured too.

P.S. What do you think about the blue tree?

all pics by Elle basi

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Time machine


This Christmas I will be travelling back in time, to the sixties. How this is possible? A simple dress will be my time machine, a Twiggy inspired one that is,  the one that I’ve been working on for the past few months.
At the moment the party outfit to be is at my parents’ because Super Mother is going to do the tricky parts (i.e. sewing the collar to the body and fixing the buttonholes). However, I will finish the dress once her job’s done (my task then: the bottom and side seam). 
What the work in progress looked like before I handed it over to the specialist:

P.S. Any idea what you will be wearing on Christmas? 

source pic. 1: sbeulah.onsugar.com

Friday, 29 November 2013

Sisters vintage

People selling and buying clothes from each other, I’ve read and heard a lot about it lately. This phenomenon (aka closet sale) runs in my family too: a few sisters of mine recently emptied their closet to get rid of garments they don’t like and wear anymore. Afterwards they asked me to come have a look at their well, let’s say garbage clothes and I could take the things I like(d) ... without paying. So there is one difference with the other sales: the act of selling was left out. Anyway, you’re wondering why I’m telling you all this? The outfit in the pictures here consists of such garbage clothes (skirt & pull).
 


(bag - Delvaux, shoes - Timberland - skirt & sweater - sisters vintage)
P.S. Are you a keeper (you have difficulties getting rid of things) or a pitcher (you don’t mind throwing things away)? 

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

- 30


In one month it will be Christmas. Sorry, let me correct myself: by then Christmas will be over already. No need to say that I will be blogging about Christmas A LOT the weeks to come and also, that it’s time to get myself, my place and the atmosphere ready for the festivities. To Christmas lovers like me that is of course no problem AT ALL.
 
What all the prepping is about? A present budget has been made as well as an inventory of what presents to buy for whom (some of the items there have even been ticked off already). I’ve been working on the party outfit, that’s right: I’m literally MAKING it this year (like last year actually). Anyway, you'll read more about that project later on the blog.

What else? Um ... wishes to spread amongst friends and family have been prepared and the cards that will carry them (i.e. the wishes) around have been taken care of too. Then there’s the Christmas tree. What decorations I need, already have and still will have to buy to complete the tree ... I’ve listed them all up. And last but not least: the countdown tool, aka Advent calendar. My board (blogged about it here) is ready to be decorated again with jingles and jangles of all kinds. (It’s the 4th year in a row that I’ll be using this calendar so I’m thinking about something new for next year. I'd say Pinterest to the rescue!).

flying angels in the living room 
a sweet winter home to the golden bird

Well ... that's it for the prepping & plans. Now it’s time to put them in motion. 

P.S. If you want to see how that goes: stay tuned!

Friday, 22 November 2013

Toys for boys

... and for girls who like airplanes in their interior (and who don't know what to blog about).


(both planes @ Flamant)

P.S. What boyish decorations do you like?

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Mmm


For those who have a sweet tooth: the one and only La Durée macarons.
In Paris I didn’t make pictures at the legendary biscuit store. This weekend, however, I tried to make up for that by acting like a tourist in my hometown (basically meaning that I stood in front of the La Durée store in Antwerp while looking at it through my camera lens).
It just dawned on me: a macaron pyramid would be the perfect Christmas tree. Some green pistachio-flavoured and dark rose coloured meringue cookies could do the tree trick, don't you think? 
But then again: how long will the tree live? Leaving the delicious sweets alone would be, well ... very hard which would make having an "uneaten" tree still standing  at Christmas a true Christmas miracle.
P.S. Which flavour is your favourite? I prefer the brownies (chocolate flavour, of course) but the rose and purple ones in the pictures above definitely look better. 

Friday, 15 November 2013

Material girl


About six weeks before Christmas the time is right to make this year’s wish list public, don’t you think? 
I hope Santa reads this post, just so he's in the loop about where to shop you know.

Pin (by Delvaux)
I have to admit: 
finding this beauty in my stocking by the chimney 
would be a true Christmas miracle.
La Durée key ring, pen and notebook
The stuff that could cheer me up 
if I don’t get Pin.
A rather short list in my opinion... The truth is that being all egocentric and materialistic (= me blogging) while natural disasters are affecting millions of people in the Philippines makes me feel guilty. So let me be clear: apart from the trivial things described above I do wish for worldwide love, peace and happiness too (sooo cliché, but soooo true).

P.S. What do you wish for this holiday season?
sources: 
www.delvaux.com

La Durée Paris

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Mon Amour



Paris je t’aime, Paris mon amour: I L.O.V.E. Paris. I’ve been in love with the city since, well ... actually since before I’d ever been there. One way or another the city of love & light has always had some fatal attraction on me. At the age of twelve (I repeat: I’d never been there) I decided Paris would be the place for me to live, love, work, etc. Ten years ago (16 years old) I visited the French capital for the first time; the three day school trip made me love the city even more. I planned to revisit the town quite often, until the time was right to move there you know.

Golden globe

Then this happened: time flied by, I finished high school, went to college, met Le Boyfriend and before I knew it had been 10 years since I’d “last” (and first) paid the city a visit. Shame on me! 
An Englishman in Paris

Anyway, since moving there is not going to happen any time soon (unless I trick Mon Amour into doing so) a Paris trip was definitely required. And so it happened (a lot of happenings in this post, don't you think?): about a week ago Le Boyfriend and I went there to say hello to my “lover city”. An active sunny Sunday it was: we climbed the Eiffel Tower (that’s right, we took the stairway to a magnificent Parisian panorama) and afterwards we made a 100% Paris city walk (with the help of the 100% Paris city guide). One could say we made “le Tour Eiffel” because the famous monument seemed to follow us throughout the day. You see: the top of the tower appeared in the skyline everywhere and at (almost) every street corner tourist shops offered versions in different sizes and colours.


P.S. Do you recognize the monuments in the pictures?

Friday, 8 November 2013

Cities of light


Last week Brussels was the city of lights when Brussels Light Festival took place along the canal at Sainctelette. No need to explain that it was all about light effects. They were to be found everywhere: in the air, on the ground, on walls ... Yet no miraculous things were there to see. At some point I felt like addressing the elephant in the room and asking when the true magic was about to happen. Then an elephant actually entered the room: I changed my mind and decided to just look at the giant animated animal and leave it at that.
ideas for garden/terrace party decoration 


P.S. On Sunday Paris "regained" the city-of-light-title: le Boyfriend and I paid the France capital a blitz visit (more about that later).

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

English kisses

Natural colours for the lips, they fit my look perfectly.
Apart from the “nail dye manicure” that I talked about earlier the English brand Burberry also spoilt us, bloggers, with lip cover and foundation samples at the A Luxury Approach event. When it comes to quality and looks the Burberry branded lip cosmetics definitely match up to the B-nail polish: a nice texture, last quite some time and (as I just said) they come in a range of perfect colours (all kind of nudie yet chic and classy).

Even though I’m not a foundation kind of girl (I prefer “just powder” because  make-up cream always makes me feel like I’m wearing a mask) I gave the B-samples a try. It’s not that I’m going to switch to cream foundation now (compact powder on a daily moisturizer is still the foundation I build my looks upon) but the B-ones do their work properly. Applying the colouring sheer fluids results in a solid, lightened tint and disguised imperfections (a lot of those on my face).

P.S. Not only do I cherish Burberry trench coats; I’m now into their make-up too. One more thing left to test: their perfumes. Curious about whether or not I will fall for the English fragrances too.

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Thursday treat



Do you have a Halloween (dinner) party planned for tonight?
Celebrating the eve of All Saints’ Day is a tradition that has found its way to Belgium over the years. Some people say it’s all about money and commerciality, some like it and seize the opportunity to have another party. I’m one of those and so last week I had family over to eat pumpkin soup and home-made pancake-mix pancakes.

Sunday, 27 October 2013

Luxury blogging

I’ve a lot of stuff to blog about, so the lack of inspiration I had to deal with over the past few weeks is gone now (luckily). The cure: 
an A Luxury Approach evening and the goodies that were on display.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Pretty Happy


“I believe that happy girls are the prettiest”, Audrey Hepburn once said. A girl finding “her” pair of Pretty Ballerinas experiences a moment of ultimate happiness. At least that's what happened to me when I first saw these baroque-inspired flats:


Now back to the pretty - happy Audrey theory. I guess that basically it comes down to this: 
Pretty Ballerinas contribute to happiness & prettiness and that way 
make every girl wearing them ... “the prettiest”.

Which pair do you prefer?

P.S. I attended an A Luxury Approach evening earlier this week, so um ... be prepared for another session of pretty blogging.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

All the pretty roses

Do you suffer from Monday blues? One way to deal with it: 
wear an overdose of roses.
scarf - no brand
(super sale) belt - Pieces
cardigan - MANGO
P.S. A rose-coloured Monday-morning sky can perform miracles too (i.e. turn the blues into roses) and, that way, make your day.

source pic: http://anurbancottage.blogspot.be/2011/11/holiday-season-kicks-off-with-color.html

Friday, 18 October 2013

Home talk




The place I would like to call home must have:

  • a spacious open kitchen
  • ditto living room
  • a “hidden” storeroom (to hide so called “junk” - I quote Le Boyfriend when he’s complaining about my incapability to throw things away, things that have emotional value and I'd rather describe as childhood treasures)
  • two bedrooms (I like to think ahead: somewhere in the future we will have children ... I guess)
  • a bathroom (no dirty roomies for me)
  • last but not least (something our current apartment is missing): a patio or terrace to have, for example, morning cups of weekend coffee and breakfasts & dinners when the weather is nice

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Blogging block


Blog inspiration is running low these days. The fact that my “creativeness” is used for sewing projects might have something to do with it. Let's say the sewing machine is blocking my blog activities.

This nice material is involved in it too.

autumn coloured velour 
(for (near) future sweater and dress)

cotton cutie pies 
(for winter pillowcase)

P.S. What's your remedy for lack of inspiration?

Friday, 11 October 2013

Devilish Friday


The Belgian national football team (aka Red Devils) is playing an important match tonight (crucial to qualification for the FIFA World Cup next summer). Normally such events don’t thrill me at all but Le Boyfriend and his (over)enthusiasm for “our” team dragged me into the devilish hype. He got me so excited that I’m even willing to join him to the game (i.e. watch on big screen, probably standing in the rain).
Of course I’m not a freak (yet?) with a black-yellow-red-coloured flag face or  Red-Devilish horns on the head, but I will show some respect to our team too. I’ll do it my way, you know. For example by wearing a red cardigan, carrying a red backpack and assuming a devil woman’s attitude all day long.

P.S. Whoever is supposed to meet me today: be prepared because I'm gonna make it a Friday from hell!

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Day at the Museum




This weekend proved the previous post right. Knit cardigans can be worn everywhere. I did it all weekend long: Saturday morning at home, in the shopping streets during the day and later, at night, to the movies too.

Sunday I spent the day (at least the afternoon) at the museum (Red Star Line Museum that is) with my beloved sisters. It was an adventurous trip and comfortable and warm clothes were a must, you know. We travelled back in time and crossed the Atlantic Ocean, heading for America on one of the famous RSL-passenger ships. A hundred years ago they carried approximately two million people in pursuit of the American dream to the so-called great country.

Since the weather was super smooth this Sun(ny)day expedition called for a cardigan too. The nice late-summer sun kept us warm and made a piece of everywear the perfect coat.


cardigan - MANGO
bag - Delvaux
jeans - Nudie Jeans
shoes - Timberland








P.S. About the museum: watch me climb aboard the Red Star Line ship.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Everywear


Imagine something that you can wear on a lazy Sunday afternoon, another day at the office as well as to a (dinner) party and moreover something that’s perfect for walks in the park, woods & on the beach too.

A piece of clothing that functional ... can’t be but a piece of every(where)wear, right? One such thing is the knit cardigan. Let the pictures speak for themselves and get inspired.




P.S. What’s your favourite cardigan style? 

My sources of inspiration:
office (p1) - lookbook.nu
party (p3) - pinterest Kristyac  
beach walk (p4) - pinterest & speldesigns

Monday, 30 September 2013

Ultimate hippieness

jeans - MANGO, shoes - Timberland

No better way to get into a state of ultimate hippieness than by wearing this flared MANGO jeans.

P.S. Finally finding a nice pair of wide-legged jeans was like finding, well ... let’s say ultimate happiness.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Cable-ready


Somehow old-fashioned, definitely cosy, breathing relaxation and calling for the holidays: cable knitwear, I adore it.

With four cable-sweaters
I feel cable-ready for the years to come. 

(Petit Bateau + 3 x MANGO)
Over the past few years cables have been all around and they seem to stay. When having a look at my wardrobe I realize I’m chained to them too, and so is MANGO. The latest collections of the Spanish multiple all included some very nice pieces of cable knitwear. A few examples in the picture up here: old-rose jumper (AW11/12), red cardigan (AW12/13) and white sweater (AW2013/2014). They all look the same yet they’re totally different. You see: the pattern changes every year.

P.S. Are you into cables too?

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Summer is fall-ing


It’s official: fall is in town (has been since Saturday) and that you can tell, especially in the place that I call “home”. The Indian summer that the weather forecast is all about couldn’t stop me from welcoming fall into our apartment last weekend. 

Friday, 20 September 2013

And the winner is ...

Me! It’s kind of exciting for me to be able to say this as I’m used to participating in contests of all kinds “unsuccessfully” (meaning: I never win). Over the years I’ve accepted the fact that winning is not in it for me. After all: not lucky at cards = lucky at love (which seems to be true as I have the best Boyfriend ever). 
Now the tide seems to have changed (when it comes to the card thing that is, let’s hope the love-luck remains the same) with a lottery-mailing organized by Knack Weekend. What the winning ticket included? Together with 49 other Weekend-Knackers I had the chance to enjoy a lifestyle, fashion and finger food experience at Smets Premium Store in Brussels yesterday. I saw a lot of nice jewellery, clothes and shoes over there. These nicely decorated ones really blew my mind.

P.S. More eye-candy of this kind will be posted on Elle B.’s Facebook