Style – Prints Charming

for clothing, swimwear or any wear!

Sao Paulo fashion week
Sao Paulo fashion week with Movimento label –

 Yes, every woman can be fashionable! This is getting to be the easiest part of my blogging week.  The reason being is that simply put, pretty much anything and everything is in Style.  You can hardly make a wrong move.  There are *updated versions of last years styles but I love the fact that you can incorporate almost any print, hemline, sleeve + pant length, color and fabric into your wardrobe for a varied and interesting mix.

Palm springs to wardrobe

Pity the poor designer that must continuously re-invent a previous look.  Have a peek:

Fergie, Katy Perry, Jessica Alba & Victoria Justice.
Fergie, Katy Perry, Jessica Alba & Victoria Justice.
Water Color Prints
Dive right in to Water Color Prints
Floral jacket & jeans - check!
Floral jacket & jeans – check!

*Brazilian beachwear label Movimento kicked off their very first summer fashion show with romantic florals, tropical camouflage and a unique variety of cuts, prints and silhouettes.

Their Inspiration: the counterpoint between the military aesthetic and tropical flowers, birds and landscapes.  With a collection infused with feminine prints, just enough  masculine elements were introduced (army-like buttons and stars, olive green & grey in the  palette) to keep the line fresh with a touch of edginess.

What appeals to you most?


Simply Satisfying – Vegetarian Ceviche

Why shouldn’t vegetarians get to enjoy ceviche too? 

That’s exactly what I was thinking after sampling a delicious veggie ceviche on an appy menu at the Trio restaurant in Palm Springs.  I almost phoned them for the recipe but then it dawned on me – why don’t I just make it my usual way but substitute using tofu instead of white fish?  Here’s how:

Cut a block of extra firm tofu (in the package) into half lengthwise and then into 1 cm. cubes. Place in a pyrex dish and add enough fresh lime juice to cover the entire thing – about 6 regular size limes in total.  Cover with plastic wrap & leave sit in fridge for about 4 hours, then discard juice and add the following items to same dish:

Getting it together
Getting it together

*Cut up the following into roughly the same size pieces except for the jalapeño which should be seeded & finely chopped :

1 cup of grape or cherry tomatoes

1 small red onion

1 small jalapeño

handful of fresh Cilantro

Kalamata black olives

1 not overly ripe Avocado

1 not overly ripe Mango

2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, course salt and black pepper to taste.

Serve with sliced lime for extra tartness & tortilla chips.

*I also had a side of tomatillo/avocada salsa.  Rave Reviews!

Link to my white fish ceviche post below:

last time I suggested the scallop bowls for serving - this time I used them.
Scallop shells for serving adds a nice touch

View/Follow my Food board on Pinterest:

City Scene – it takes more than two to Tangoo

Like the dance,Tangoo is a metaphor for moving in a meaningful way across ones city. It embodies effortless and meaningful movement while always knowing the next step.

Tangoo’s mission is to make Vancouver a more fun and connected city.

Tangoo is the brainchild of Sauder School of Business alumni Henry Heeney and Paul Davidescu with one purpose in mind; to help Vancouverites get the most out of their evenings. The goal was to design a perfect evening out with a blend of distinct people & places, authentic food, stiff cocktails, and ultimately, great memories. Henry and Paul dreamed up the concept of Tangoo after visiting beautiful Barcelona and realizing that Vancouver’s social scene needed a boost. They had to find a way to ease the pain of disastrous last-minute group planning and the difficulty with meeting new people around the city. They succeeded!

Tangoo made the Globe and Mail’s TOP TEN Vancouver Attractions.

Cheers everyone!
Cheers everyone!

By being a part of a Tangoo evening you’re treated like a VIP where everything is taken care of beforehand so you get to enjoy a hassle-free night out.   I’ve enjoyed two Tangoo evenings so far and look forward to many more.  It’s a great way to meet new people, experience the best of Vancouver venues with drinks, appies, dinner, transportation (if required by limo, taxi or ferry boat depending on your location) and ending up at a popular nightclub.  Most places are within walking distance of each other which makes for easy access.  They offer Gastown evenings, or places in Yaletown for example and are expanding to more and more locations like the recent West End & Granville Island. They seek out the drinking and dining gems of Vancouver with groups of 30 or more seated within the same location for easy conversation.

The view at Ten Ten Tapas - our location.
The view at our location – Ten Ten Tapas.
Friends Georgina, Rosa, handsome Paul & me.
Georgina, Rosa,  Paul & me at Ten Ten Tapas

HOW TO Tangoo: It’s easy & for everyone – just select a night and venue from their calendar & book online which takes care of your 3-course meal and two drinks with tax & tip already included in the final price.  How nice is that?

Plan your next weekend out at:

B well – B fearless

WITH your FASHION choices and life in general.  If the shoe fits it will make you feel better.  Follow:

Designer Michael Kors’s Fashion Principles

Kors with Project runway panel Heidi Klum, Jennifer Hudson & Nina Garcia.
Kors with Project Runway panel Heidi Klum, Jennifer Hudson & Nina Garcia.

“Now that everyone looks like she’s 30, it’s not easy to define rules for how women should dress at different ages,” says Kors.  Kors breaks down the elements of style:

Michael Kors
Michael Kors

Hemlines:  “Supershort skirts should be left to the young or the tennis court.  As you age, it’s more important to consider balance:  If you’re showing your legs, show less on top.”

Cleavage:  “It’s great to show off your best points, but still – leave a bit to the imagination.”

Prints:  “I don’t think you can tell a woman who feels like a million dollars when she puts on a bold, graphic print that she should stop wearing it just because she’s hit a certain age.  Wear what makes you feel beautiful.”

Color:  “The colors that suited you when you were 30 will still suit you when you’re 70.  Your skin tone and hair and eye color are the real question, not your age.”

Fit:  “Your clothes should look as if they were made just for you.  Forget the size tags and get to a tailor.  If you wear skinny jeans and you’re fit, stay true to your style.  And no matter your age, skip the pieces that make you fidget, whether it’s a shoe you can’t walk in or a hemline you have to keep pulling down.”

Jewelry:  “This is the best way to shake up your look at any age.  If you feel less comfortable showing skin, bold jewelry and strong accessories are great ways to play the fashion game.  Be fearless!

Trends:  “Avoid anything that doesn’t feel relevant to your style, but always evolve, or you’ll look stuck in the past.”

As told to Danielle Pergament for Allure Magazine.

Speaking of Etiquette: where are your MANNERS?

It’s a matter of Mind over Manners but if you’re rusty you can always brush up and order the book of Golden Rules from the world’s most glamorous zip code.

24 Karat Etiquette: Beverly Hills Manners. [Hardcover]

There is really a book for everything.  If you’re going to do it – do it right! Maybe you can find this in the “self-help” section of your local bookstore – if you still have a bookstore that is.  I think proper manners are getting to be almost obsolete – what a shame because even a simple please or thank you can make all the difference.  But a book on the subject? Which must mean that parents (shame especially on you 90210 parents!) are not taking the time to properly teach their kids.

Author Lisa Gaché (the modern Miss Manners) admits to not writing her very first thank-you note until she was married.  She is also the founder and C.E.O. of the book title’s Beverly Hills Manners, a decorum school she opened nearly seven years ago.  (Can this be the American version of the Swiss finishing school?) “That was the household I grew up in.  Manners, as I later learned, were not dusty rules but rather tools that help us feel more comfortable and help put each other at ease.”

Gaché started with a concierge service in Los Angeles; while doing that, she realized there was an etiquette vacuum that needed to be filled.  Also, as the mother of two daughters, she wanted to instill in her children the confidence that comes with having good manners.

She received official certification from the Protocol School of Washington, in D.C.  Her Beverly Hills Manners classes and private coaching include everything from children’s table manners to red-carpet protocol, and she has students as young as five years old. 

Topping her list: dressing for the occasion and table manners.  “We live in an extremely casual society,etiquette where Lululemon and Havaianas are the uniform of choice.  So I am a big proponent of dressing.  When you take the time to put yourself together, it can color your world in a way that sets the tone for the day.”  And with respect to dining etiquette:  “There is a reason for tablecloths and utilizing real cloth napkins – not every night, but I think at least once a week – so that children can see what it’s like to sit still and how to properly cut their food and make pleasant conversation.”

One golden rule that costs no money and almost no effort that you can do right now – “Smile!”

Taken from Krista Smith’s article in the March issue of “Vanity Fair Magazine.”






Beauty Product Review – PRIMER Time

Artists prime their canvas before painting to prevent the oils from seeping through – that is exactly what a primer does for your face.  Makeup artists have been using primers for years on models and actors to help create a smooth surface before applying makeup.

I’ve been using a primer since before I even knew what a primer really was.  Before all the hype and before every single makeup company decided to jump on the bandwagon and create their own. My very first one was 1) Clarins Lisse Minute – Instant Smooth Perfecting Touch Makeup Base – approx. 35.00.

CLARINS cream like formula
CLARINS cream like formula

I was game to try anything from the luxurious French skincare company since my mom used the line.  I liked the oil free, silky smooth texture that glided on and seemed to hide pores and imperfections. Best of all it completely toned down shine in the T-zone which is what sold me on it in the first place.  Makeup applied very easily over top.  It became a skincare staple.

THEN the others came into play. I sampled a lot of them at different price points – many are capable but the ones below along with Clarins are my TOP “Hall of Fame” choices:

2) La Roche Posay Anthelios Daily Anti-Aging Primer with 50 SPF Sunscreen – approx. roche

I loved it – felt like cashmere.  The only problem is that if you already use their tinted mineral sunscreen for face with SPF 50 (which I do) they tend to cancel each other out.  For winter I might re-consider when switching to a lower SPF day cream.

Description:  For the 1st time, ANTHELIOS 50 combines broad spectrum UVA/UVB protection with Cell-OX Shield™ antioxidant technology in a primer that is clinically proven to instantly reduce fine lines, wrinkles, pore size, dark spots, and redness.  Suitable for all skin types.

Anthelios 50 Daily Anti-Aging Primer with Sunscreen & a transformative light-weight texture has won the following Awards:

  • 2012 Elle Beauty Genius Award
  • 2012 Redbook MVP Beauty Award: Best Primer

3)  Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Primer – approx. $10.00 at drug stores nationwide.Primer Time

For the price this stuff is excellent!  Reduces the appearance of lines, wrinkles, pores and imperfections, while enhancing skin’s radiance. A subtle pink tint adds a youthful glow. Apply all over face, after moisturizer and before foundation. Suitable for all skin tones and types.

Mica Beauty
Mica Beauty Gel Formula

4)  On the higher end I love Micabeauty Cosmetics 100% Mineral Makeup Perfecting Primer.

This gel formula is beautiful but pricey.  MicaBeauty’s light-weight Perfecting Makeup Primer with its gel like finish enhances skin texture and primes it for makeup application. The Perfecting Makeup Primer glides on easily creating a protective layer on your skin, allowing foundation to go on easily and last longer. Our velvety formula creates a perfect canvas for foundation and blush application, keeping makeup in place and looking fresh all day long.   Price – $129.95. Take 20% off with mention of this blog. Link:

Do you use a Primer – if so, which one?

Wet ‘n Wild – Surfer STYLE

I wish I was a California Surfer Girl

Ever so appealing, exciting and adventurous – to be able to catch a WAVE.  It conjures up free spirited with that hint of danger which some make look so easy.

Annette Funicello vintage photo - images.  Do you think she was actually surfing?  Love the SUIT!
Annette Funicello vintage photo – images. Do you think she was actually surfing? Love the SUIT!
From May issue of Harper's Bazaar Magazine
From May issue of Harper’s Bazaar Magazine – if it was me I’d definitely go for the Chanel surfboard even to lie on at the beach.

What about surfer style?  I don’t see why we can’t do “avant de” or après surf? For those less willing types not wanting to take a chance that a humongous wave will suck us up or at least our bathing suit:

 I’m much better suited to surfing the internet – but that can be dangerous too.

I found this Tommy Hilfiger shirt. dress while surfing
Go Hilfiger!  I found this Tommy Hilfiger shirt dress while surfing.
Love these vans-surf casual shoe.
Love these vans-surf casual shoe.
That's me on the cover.  You didn't really think that did you?
That’s me on the cover. You didn’t really think so did you?

My style INspiration board on Pinterest at:

surfer - north shore, Hawaii
Surfer – North Shore, Hawaii.  Looks like he’s not even wearing shoes



THAI Red Curry Paste from scratch

in food processor
in food processor

Love Thai Curry?  Red, Green & Yellow curry pastes are the base for most of the dishes in Thai cooking and the Red version makes for excellent chicken, beef, vegetarian, fish and other seafood curry.

You’ll never buy packaged curry pastes again once you try this recipe. Homemade curry paste makes for tastier curries, and they’re much healthier too!fish

This paste is courtesy of Chef Sarnsern Gajaseni at the Oriental Hotel in Bangkok.  It’s enough for at least two dishes, each serving about four people.  I’ve made double this amount and divided it up to freeze it, well labelled in separate containers.  It freezes very well and you’ll be able to easily use it with a few extra added ingredients (see recipe) to create a delicious curry.  If you like this one I’ll be posting the Green & Yellow versions which are slightly different but equally delicious.

using shrimp
using shrimp

Makes about 10 Tablespoons

10 to 12 hot dried chillies (of the long cayenne variety).  I use Thai red bird chillies.

5 garlic cloves, chopped

1 cup chopped shallots

1 Tbsp. fresh lemongrass that has been thinly sliced, crosswise.  Fresh lemongrass stalks have a knot at the very bottom.  Remove that before finely slicing, crosswise, and at a slight angle, starting at the bottom end and going up about 6 inches.  It will not blend unless it has been sliced first.

3 thin slices peeled, fresh or frozen galangal (or ginger). Galangal is fairly tough and needs first to be cut, crosswise, into thin slices, and then chopped before being put into the blender.

1 thin slice of fresh kaffir lime rind or dried rind, first soaked in water for 30 minutes.

6-8 cilantro roots (usually bought from Indian grocers), washed well and coarsely chopped.  If you cannot get them, use a small handful of the leaves for the required aroma.

Fresh ground white pepper

¼ tsp. shrimp paste or use either 2 anchovies from a can, chopped or a bit of anchovy paste.

½ tsp. ground cumin

½ tsp. ground coriander

2 Tbsp. bright red paprika

*most of these ingredients I buy from “South China Seas trading company” at Granville Island Market including the shrimp paste and palm sugar (for recipe).

How to:

Soak the chillies in 5 Tbsp. of hot water for 1-2 hours (or put them in microwave for 2 minutes and then let them sit for about 30 minutes).  Put the chillies together with their soaking liquid, into the blender, along with all the remaining ingredients in the order listed.  Blend, pushing down with a rubber spatula as many times as necessary, until you have a smooth paste.  What you do not use immediately should be refrigerated or frozen.

Fish in Red Curry Sauce

I used fillet of halibut for this one but you can use a variety of firm white fish or even shrimp.  The fillets should be cut into roughly 3-inch pieces.  Serve with plain aromatic jasmine rice which will be really nice to soak up the sauce.

14-ounce can of coconut milk, left undisturbed for 3 hours of more

3 Tbsp. peanut oil (if not use corn)

5 Tbsp. Red Curry Paste (which I hope you made but if not you can always buy it).

1 Tbsp. Fish sauce (there is no substitute but vegetarians will need to omit this ingredient).

1 tsp. thick tamarind paste (if not substitute with lemon juice).  Tamarind paste can be found usually at an Indian market.

1 tsp. palm sugar (if not use brown sugar).

1 pound firm white fish

4 fresh kaffir lime leaves (if not use 1 tsp. julienned lemon rind)

20 fresh sweet Thai basil leaves (if not use regular basil leaves)

Carefully open the can of coconut milk without disturbing it too much and remove 4 Tbsp. of the thick cream that will have accumulated at the top.  Stir the remaining contents of the can well and set aside.

Pour the oil and the coconut cream into a large, non-stick, lidded pan or well-seasoned wok and set over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot, put in the curry paste.  Stir and fry until the oil separates and the paste is lightly browned.  Reduce the heat to low and add the fish sauce, tamarind paste, sugar and ¾ cup of water.  Stir and taste for a balance of seasonings.  Cover and simmer on a very low heat for 5 minutes.  Stir in the reserved coconut milk.  Lightly dust the fish pieces with salt and then slid them into the sauce in a single layer.  Bring to a simmer, spoon the sauce over the fish pieces, cover, and simmer very gently until they just cook through.

Just before serving, either tear up the lime leaves or else remove the central vein and cut them into fine strips, and scatter these and the basil leaves over the top of the fish.

**I have a flavorful recipe for a vegetable curry

thai eggplants
thai eggplants

using 4 Thai eggplant, 1 medium chopped onion, 1 cup of bamboo shoots, 6 ounces French cut green beans + 1 red pepper cut into strips.  You make it much the same way: Heat 1 Tbsp. of oil in a large wok or fry pan and then cook 2 Tbsp. of red curry paste for 4 minutes over a medium heat, stirring.  Then add 2 ½ cups of coconut milk, bring to a boil and simmer, uncovered for 5 minutes.  Add the chopped eggplants, bamboo shoots, and 6 lime leaves and simmer for 5 minutes.  Add the green beans & red pepper and cook for additional 5 minutes or until all vegetables are tender.  Add ½ cup basil leaves, 2 Tbsp. fish sauce (if using), 1 Tbsp. lime juice and 2 tsp. palm or brown sugar.   Drizzle with coconut milk, garnish with thai basil and sliced red chilli.  Serve with rice.

but you can substitute using Japanese eggplant
but you can substitute using Japanese eggplant

from curries to kebabas – recipes from the Indian spice trail” – everything in this enticing cookbook is outstanding.  Madhur Jaffrey even traces the origins of curry, explaining how the ingredients & techniques were brought to new lands. It’s unusual for me to make so many recipes from one book but each one turned out better than expected – and it took some of the mystery out of these exotic dishes.

Folk Fest – on the other side of the fence

vender2SUN day  was the third and final day of the 36th annual Vancouver Folk Music Festival at Jericho Beach. 

The beach at Jericho
Jericho has to be my all time favorite Vancouver beach – it’s never too crowded and it goes on and on and on……

Always an amazing musical  lineup of world class performers which you can hear quite clearly from the other side of the fence while perusing the other lineup of various vendors under white tents set up all along the beach – haute hippie style.

Lexi - owner of "Daub + Design" ultra comfort panties
Lexi – owner of “Daub + Design” ultra comfort panties
Style is Individual
Style is Individual
These women are from  the Republic of Ghana, Africa.  Their booth was lovely.
These women are from the Republic of Ghana, Africa.
beauty products to
natural beauty products too
Jia Jia got a feather in his fur
Jia Jia got a feather in his fur
my purchase - a lovely cornelian/sterling ring from Fossil Grotto located Duncan, B.C.
Love at first sight: my purchase – a lovely *carnelian/sterling ring from Fossil Grotto located in Duncan, B.C.

*Energy of carnelian resembles a peaceful, warm afternoon filled with genuine happiness.  YES!

Bonus: Its joyful energy has a nourishing and protective quality to it. Carnelian has courage, confidence and creativity at its core; all these qualities being combined in a calm and grounded kind of way.