Out with the old, IN with the old recreatedvalentine3I often wonder how fashion designers get it together to keep coming up with new ideas for something original and inspiring for every season (including “resort wear” which is considered another season in fashiondom which makes five) and all those nerve wracking make-or-break shows.  Something that will make people excited to want to go out and buy that new shirt right away.  To be “that girl.” Because you know the easiest way to transform yourself is through clothes – if you dress for your mood (not necessarily the occasion).  Sometimes you see something totally wild.  You can admire it (on someone else) but never consider it for yourself and sometimes it’s like….I like it but it’s been done before…again and again (maybe they’ve just added some more buttons, zippers or pockets but otherwise it’s the same).  In any event you must be very creative to keep plugging away at it and try to outdo your last performance.  Just as much pressure as a musician has to come up with a new hit, but not wanting to be totally typecast…….as a

The New World Order - Vintage Alaia Shearling Bomber Jacket
The New World Order – Vintage Alaia Shearling Bomber Jacket (website below)

Designer, Musician, Artist (one who paints + draws), Actor, Photographer, Chef, Writer……(blogger?) and even Politicians (The best reality TV drama going is Trump vs Cruz vs Clinton vs Sanders). I’ve been watching the U.S. debates like any other interested Canadian.

By being typecast I mean restricted to one style (a recognizable signature style such as a Picasso painting), that are the kinds of things that people  “expect” of you .  But even with Picasso, the style may be recognizable but it’s not “always” the same.  You know what I mean.  Maybe you eat the same cereal all the time but one day you put blueberries over top and another day strawberries.  There must be an element of surprise.

In the mad crazy world of invention,  everything seems to be intermixed lately.  Fashion and Art, Art and Food, Beauty and Culture. A designer visits an art gallery and gets ideas for his next collection.  Actors are models, models are actors and regular people are starring in their own version-of-reality TV series.  It’s interesting.

For myself in general, I draw inspiration from everywhere.  People, the media (like everyone else, is a big contributor) through TV, magazines, newspapers, online with other peoples blogs, music, books, stores, movies (amazing ones this season), art, travel, restaurants, nature and on the street. I’m usually more inspired when I’m travelling and things look different and fresh and I’m living more in the moment (which we say we should do but mostly do not).  It’s not only for trying to come up with new ideas for the blog so it doesn’t get stale (I hope) but also in day to day life, in areas like cooking and finding a new recipe for fish or maybe trying out a new running route to keep from getting bored.

As for restaurants, why do you think Cauliflower is having a moment of fame right now trying to outshine Kale in many restaurants? The chefs have come up with some pretty incredible ways of serving it. It’s still the same vegetable but now it tastes so much better.  We never thought of baking it with chilli and lemon before? Hell; I was just taken out to a popular restaurant and they had a delicacy of chocolate covered crispy chicken skin on the menu. When I asked the waiter what happened (like did the chicken fall into the pot of melted chocolate by mistake) I can’t remember but I think it actually did.  In any event, it was a mistake.  But one most people like because it’s new (if you didn’t know that it was chicken, it could be walnuts). And if it wasn’t served cold, it would be more greasy.  Yuck! Not like the intentional chocolate covered bacon many chefs are now serving.  At a party someone brought orange chocolate covered bacon.  Really??  I went off again…but really…

I’m wondering how important any of this is to any of you?  I believe inspiration is a big deal.  At least something else to keep us going, a curiosity towards finding a different way, idea, recipe, whatever…

Isn’t that what life is about?

Some Inspiration when it comes to STYLE:

Portraits by Willy Vanderperre
YOKO ONO – Portrait by Willy Vanderperre

An online magazine featuring interesting women:

The passage of time has been miraculously beneficial for Yoko Ono. While previous generations held grudges and questioned her motives, in the 21st century Ono is cherished for her provocations and wisdom. As a musician and multimedia artist since before the term was coined, Ono holds the rare position of courting a global audience without ever having to compromise her work, which is often wilfully impenetrable.

At the age of 77, Ono continues to think of the long-term, with two forthcoming exhibitions and a recent album, as well as progressing her ongoing project around the world, asking the masses to imagine peace. It is a message from which she will never waver.

Text by Liz Hoggard, Styling by Olivier Rizzo

Shopping Online:

The New World Order NYC

Vestiaire Collective Website:

Shop the closets of fashion lovers from Paris, Berlin, Milan, New York City, and more.  Mix ‘n match high street, luxury vintage and new pieces with Vestiaire Collective.

 St. Laurent Leather Biker Jacket
Vestiaire Collective – St. Laurent Leather Biker Jacket 



Food: CHEFS’ Table – CURRY CUP challenge

FOR CURRY LOVERS ONLY.  Here’s something that may pique your interest if you live in Vancouver.  currycup1For those not able to attend,  I’ve posted one of my Indian curry recipes below.

CHEFS Confirmed for 3rd Annual Curry Cup

[Vancouver, BC] On March 7, 2016, the *Chefs’ Table Society of BC’s third annual Curry Cup returns to Heritage Hall, 3102 Main St., Vancouver from 6:30 pm to 9:30 pm.

Each ticket includes samples of curry from all the teams (listed below); wine from Evolve Cellars, beer from R&B Brewing, alcoholic & non-alcoholic drink samples created by Lauren Mote, and an entertaining evening.

For many chefs and their brigades, curry is the ultimate family-style meal, the proud product of a cook’s cultural heritage.

Photo: d. king
Photo: d. king (my recipe below)

This year’s COMPETING CHEFS will present their version of a Curry dish:

Last year’s winner, Rob Ratcliffe, Hawksworth Restaurant, will be back this year but this time as a judge, along with Sonia Beeksma, Global BC, Meeru Dhalwala, Vij’sMy ShantiRangoli, Barbara- Jo McIntosh, Barbara -Jo’s Books to Cooks, and Mijune Pak, Follow Me Foodie.

Emcee for the evening is once again Vancouver’s “Man About Town” Fred Lee.

Proceeds from the event go to support Growing Chefs, an organization that teaches children how to grow and cook their own food.

Tickets, $60 (+ taxes & fees), are now on sale and moving quickly. Get yours here.  The first 80 tickets purchased will also receive a Chefs’ Table Society of BC organic cotton tote bag (to be picked up at the Curry Cup).

About the Chefs’ Table Society:

*The Chefs’ Table Society of British Columbia is a non-profit society comprised of BC’s leading chefs and culinary professionals. It is a chef-administered, province-wide collaborative dedicated to creating a foundation for the exchange of information between culinary professionals. The Society supports innovative and sustainable programs that will inspire, educate and nurture BC chefs, producers and the local food industry. The Chefs’ Table Society secures apprenticeships for and bestows bursaries to emerging local chefs and also finances culinary education programs in BC schools. For more information or to become a member visit

Not to worry, we all love curry especially those on the jury.
Not to worry, we all love curry especially those on the jury who are in no hurry (because they want to keep sampling….just to make sure).

Oh; I’m also a poet, but I bet you already know it (or a rapper – ha, ha goofing around)

What I’m not is an official judge of this CC, however my consolation prize is to be a judge of an upcoming new annual Barn Burner BBQ (yeah; bring it on!) event.  I’ll tell you about that later.  In the meantime….

My “crazy for curry” Indian recipe

Travel: On the Road  – The Glamping Life in Style

There is a certain style to GLAMPING and it means No Tent Required.

Photo: Mikael Jansson, Vogue
Photo: Mikael Jansson, Vogue    (OF COURSE, YOU MUST DRESS THE PART)

Nothing wrong with those adventurous, real outdoorsy, down to earth types who lug around a backpack and set up their tent and make a fire to cook their food.  It’s just not for me at this stage (and it never was).  But I love the outdoors, breathing in fresh air and sleeping partially outside.

I forgot my gown for this trip but at least I brought my heels - taken 3 years ago.
I forgot my gown for this trip but at least I brought my heels!

The next step up from tent camping is owning a VW Eurovan Camper that comes equipped with a fridge, a 2 burner stovetop, a furnace, 2 fold down beds (you can call it a two-bedroom but it’s a bit of a stretch), storage space, surround sound for music and a pop top so you can actually stand up and move around a bit.  And a shower…out the back (you have to open up the back so it’s better in warm temperatures and it’s not always the best idea to use it completely naked). Just ask me how I know this!

The best thing about a smaller camper is that you get to park it almost anywhere rather than having to stay in an RV park.  Almost…because many places don’t let you camp overnight just anywhere but there are countless beautiful state parks which means you can drive into a spot either right on, or much closer to lakes, rivers and the ocean.  It feels like camping…just much more comfortable.  That, and wearing my cashmere pajamas. Having a dog or two wagging along is a big bonus.  In fact, I wouldn’t want to do it without them.

The added advantage of a smaller camper is we’ve ended up in places and spaces that could not accommodate a large RV, like the middle of the Redwoods, Ca, the Badlands in S. Dakota and on top of Dead Horse Canyon, Utah (where Thelma & Louise drove off that same cliff, we decided to take the slow road down).  It’s an adventure in itself.

glamping with Debbie & a flask helps!
glamping with Debbie… a flask comes in handy!

Having a luxury RV like a Country Coach or Prevost is a way of life for many people and I can relate to the charm of life on the road and stopping here and there for a length of time.  But you should see some of these RV’s…I’m talking luxury homes away from homes.  Million dollar+ homes on wheels that are nicer than many people’s condos.  I have a few friends who live like that.  They have a home base but drive their luxe coaches from place to place and set up anywhere from a few weeks to several months. The true beauty of travelling this way is that you get to see so much more than if you were to hop on a flight to go straight from A to B.  You must also have the luxury of time.

Owning a vehicle/home like a large RV means that you must reside in RV parks that are setup for that size of home away from home.  There are only a few RV parks that I’ve encountered (one is “Outdoor Resorts” in Las Vegas where our friends stayed – it was beautiful with a  huge outdoor living space complete with tiki hut, living area and kitchen) that I can imagine myself staying in, except no VW’s allowed.  Anyway, it’s whatever works for you.  These people end up paying each night to park, more than some hotels charge.

So even though I love the roominess  of some RV’s I’ve come across, what I really want is…. drumroll… AIRSTREAM. Only people who really know me will understand this. Yes, since the first time I saw one I’ve wanted one.  There’s just something about the Airstream. It has a caché of its own.

Owning one for camping purposes is the equivalent to owning a Vespa for scooting purposes.

Allright allright allright… it’s the stylishness I confess.  I’ve been eyeing them for a while now.  One guy even caught me taking pictures of a vintage model in Palm Springs a perfect place for one wouldn’t you say?.. and there I was snapping away and it turned out to be his Vintage Airstream.  Then we had a whole conversation on them becoming more mainstream now (aw, I hate when that happens), more pricey and more exclusive and definitely a collectible.  He owns two but has homes elsewhere….blah, blah, blah…(airstream talk). His name was Matthew.

If you don’t believe me just refer to the paragraph below from a recent article in Vogue Magazine.  I mean….it’s Vogue, so let’s talk about style. 

The first Airstream was built in 1929, and almost 90 years later, the iconic aluminum trailer still has quite a following: Matthew McConaughey and Lenny Kravitz are proud owners, and many restaurants, shops, and hotels have invested in Airstreams as new forms of food trucks, showrooms, or guest room options. And let’s not forget the Airstream’s supporting role in Karlie Kloss and Taylor Swift’s BFF road trip for Vogue back in February.

See? I told you so!

I bought this one in the meantime but it's a bit tight
Mini “V” and  Airstream in Los Olivos, Ca. Adorable, and let’s just say – more affordable!
me driving away in my red pickup truck
driving away in my red pickup truck

Stay tuned for Part Two

Do you know what day it is today? It’s a very Happy Birthday Day!

It’s Jia Jia’s Birthday today – how appropriate that it also happens to be Valentines Day

HAPPY 13th BIRTHDAY to Jia Jia

He's shoutiing "I'm a teenager now - I can drive soon"
He’s shouting “I’m a teenager now – I can drive soon”

I’m just wild about you. I can’t say it enough. I can’t imagine what I would do if I didn’t have you in my life. jiajia2

When you look me in the eyes you tell me I’m yours furever. That’s true love!jiajia1And we will continue to look out for each other as long as we’re both together in this world.valentine5feelgood3


Photos: d. king

What a guy!

Feel-good FUN: Carpool Karaoke

LAUGHING & SINGING is good for the SOUL

I wasn’t googling cars, pools or karaoke when these popup videos unexpectedly showed up on the side of my screen. 

Stevie Wonder & James Ca
Stevie Wonder & James Corden

But I’m so glad they did, because it was just what I needed to get out of a slump on a dismal day and I couldn’t stop clicking on the links to most of them. Have you heard of James Corden (The Late, Late Show with James Corden) before?  Have you seen any of his Carpool Karaoke videos?  OMG….you must! I laughed and laughed and sang along …because no one else could hear me.  Corden carpools to work by picking up a different singing superstar in each segment (some clips are longer than others) from Justin Bieber to Stevie Wonder –  It’s super funny and the songs are great.

with Adele - she's a riot!
with Adele – she’s a riot!

I started with Elton John because when I was living at home as a teenager one of the things I’d constantly hear from my father was “turn down the music, it’s way too loud” and “why do you think this guy is so great, you can’t even make out one word he’s saying” (I might have been playing Crocodile Rock or Benny & the Jets when he said it). But I remember playing a lot of Elton John.  I still love him as a musician and a person (he appears to be an amazing guy in all respects).  Next up was Chris Martin (hitch hiking on his way to appear in the half-time show at Superbowl) and Adele (how many times can you say hello?).  All have great senses of humour and the host of this crazy show is hilarious as he sings along too and sometimes stops for other escapades.

If you feel so inclined (like me, who was video binging – one right after another) you might want to check out:

Stevie Wonder (as he takes the drivers seat)

Justin Beiber, Mariah Carey, Jennifer Hudson (as she sings for a takeout order), Carrie Underwood and Rod Stewart.

I hope it makes you laugh too.  You can let me know if you want.  XO   *(for those following via e-mail please click on the blue title above to see clips).

Elton John and James Corden

Adele & James Corden:

Chris Martin & James Corden:


Feel-good Friday: the little things

Here’s a few fun gifty ideas for the person who has everything, is hard to buy for and/or appreciates something uniqueand none of these items will set you back a whole paycheck.

A tile for a person who loves the beach - how about me?
A tile for a person who loves the beach
For the Gourmand in him/her - Gourmet salts. This is Toasted Onion &
For the Connoisseur  in him/her – Gourmet salts.  This is from Laguna Salt Company but you can buy exotic salts in many specialty stores now.  You can cook together.  Steak and Risotto immediately come to mind here.


A delightful body lotion? Hmmm.....
A delightful body lotion? Hmmm…..
Again; someone who loves the beach and likes to clean up afterwards
Again; someone who loves the beach and likes to clean up afterwards.  Run a bath?
And what woman wouldn't love to get her clutches on a lipstick clutch bag - this is from Nordstrom (couldn't help myself)
And what woman wouldn’t love to get her clutch on a lipstick clutch bag? – this is from Nordstrom (couldn’t help myself) – it had to be included.  MAJOR HINT HERE (just kidding). Seriously, I’m kidding!

Body Lotion & Soap from Los Olivos General Store

Finish with something HOT?
Finish with something HOT!!

Photos: d. king

A few romantic quotes:

There’s a long life ahead of you and it’s going to be beautiful, as long as you keep loving and hugging each other – Yoko Ono

bloglogo4 - CopyLove will find a way through paths where wolves fear to prey – Lord Byron

“If my Valentine you won’t be,
I’ll hang myself on your Christmas tree.” – Ernest Hemingway, 88 Poems

Have a loving weekend folks!

If I had a flower for every time I thought of you I could walk in my garden forever….awwww!

beauty: in the buffing

It’s pretty common at this time of year to experience chapped lips.  It doesn’t feel good and it doesn’t look good when your lipstick flakes because your lips are too dry.

What RED suits you best?
What RED suits you best?

We’ve spoken about face scrubs  before and the importance of exfoliating to keep our complexions looking dewy and glowy and perfect (ha ha) as much as we can.  What about our lips? We shouldn’t forget about them….especially with Valentines Day around the corner.  Get them REDdy!

I’m not so sure if Benefit Cosmetics still sells their lip duo (a balm and exfoliant which I bought years ago and still have –  see photo) which is a natural more gentle exfoliant geared specifically for lips with little beads packed with AHA and jojoba to scrub away chapped lips and dry lines.

Benefit - Dr. Feelgood combo
Beauty with Benefit – tubes of Dr. Feelgood

If you can’t find this product then you can use any regular face exfoliant but don’t rub so hard over your mouth.  It should work almost as well.  It’s just that the little tube from Benefit is so convenient to carry around and for travelling.  I think the cute packaging is what drew me to the product in the first place.

 It really helps to smooth the lips, make them softer so lipstick applies easier and lasts longer and your lips...well they’re much more kissable this way.


That’s what we want!


Style: what to wear UNDER what you wear

I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again… it’s what’s underneath that counts”

jesus fernandez lingerie from Buenos Aires
jesus fernandez lingerie from Buenos Aires

It’s the slipperiness of the silk, the sauciness of satin, and the delicate lingering of lace that can make lingerie so arousing.

Lingerie (including corsets, camisoles and a few garters) has been a passion of mine for a very long time.  It still is,  but to a lesser degree because I already own so many pieces. It takes a special man to appreciate your lingerie…because when it comes right down to it we women know that most all men don’t care how nice your lingerie is.  They just want to see us naked.

JF lingerie - I LOVE this complete outfit
JF lingerie – I LOVE this complete outfit

On the other hand, as you begin to remove whatever you happen to be wearing overtop (remember it’s Valentines Day this Sunday) isn’t it much more seductive to be seen in a lacy, racy number than in granny underwear?  I’m just saying…..I think he’ll take notice even if he never says anything.  Men have it so much easier.  A nice pair of boxer shorts that aren’t torn to shreds (eww) – perfect!

JF lingerie lace triangle bra & panties
JF lingerie lace triangle bra & silk/lace panties

But honestly I’ve always been attracted to beautiful lingerie whether it be retro romantic, sexy, plain pretty or terribly trashy (reserved for special occasions).  Keep in mind that interpretations of what makes underwear sexy varies from woman to woman, and from man to man.  The sexiest part is the way it makes you feel…kind of like a signature perfume.  In fact, nothing except your perfume gets as close to your skin.

Having said that, I also really like some of the sporty combos I’ve been seeing (since it doesn’t make any sense to wear lace to the gym).  It gives you an underlying (ha, ha) confidence just knowing you have it on.  A little secret.

That’s why I added lingerie to my repertoire of things to sell in boutiques and online.  I found a special brand in Buenos Aires when I walked by a store that was closed – the  mannequin in the window was wearing a set I wanted.  It was very simple but extremely lovely and feminine (with no wiring, padding or anything of the like and I had never seen anything quite like it in North America) so I went back the next day and bought it then asked to speak to the owner.  We had a meeting and I ended up getting the exclusive rights for sales in Canada at the time.  The line sold very well to repeat customers who understood the workmanship, guys who wanted something special for their ladies and an actress who starred opposite Tom Cruise (filming a few scenes in Vancouver) who came into the shop directly from the airport specifically looking for lingerie. She mentioned seeing the ad I had put in the Vancouver Sun (for the first time) on the flight over from Los Angeles.  She took several pairs into the dressing room and left with five sets.

It was a good run even with the complicated European sizing difference, but I decided to end the lingerie business to concentrate on other areas.

I like this quote from a Passion for Lingerie – “You know it’s a bad day when you put your bra on back to front and it fits better”

La Perla - Bra: $408 Thong: $128
La Perla –

Here are a few ideas of lingerie sets I think are simply sublime – although they won’t replace your can’t-live-without seamless t-shirt bras and commandos.  Still…….necessary!

Kiki de Montparnasse - sold at Bra: $225 Panties: $155 Garter: $150
Kiki de Montparnasse – sold at:


L'Agent buy Agent Provocateur. Sold at Bra: $110 Panties: $50 Garter: $65
L’Agent by Agent Provocateur. Sold at:



My Love of Lingerie Board on Pinterest at:

Food: Savoury Soufflé  

VALENTINES day is this coming Sunday so why not make something different and surprise him or her with a super tasting savoury spinach/cheese soufflé?

d. king
Photo: d. king

 You were probably thinking chocolate right?

A soufflé (I love the sound of the word – it rhymes with “to play”) is likely something you don’t make very often if at all, and most people love them.  A perfect soufflé is always crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside.  This recipe comes courtesy of my friend Ruth who recently made it to rave reviews including mine.  Now I’m making it too.  I might even double the decadence and make *chocolate soufflé (my recipe below) for dessert.  Chocolate is good for the soul especially for Valentines Day.  Enjoy!


(serves 4 -6 with a side salad)

Set your oven to 375F

3 Tbsp. butter

3 Tbsp. flour

1 cup milk

dash cayenne

1/2 tsp. dry mustard

1/2 tsp. salt

1  cup grated cheddar cheese

4-5 eggs separated

1 bunch spinach

Make a *roux with the butter & flour 

*To make a roux heat the butter in a pan or skillet over medium heat until just melted.  Then add the flour.  Use a whisk and begin stirring the mixture constantly.  Break up any lumps with whisk and distribute mixture evenly.  If  you’ve never made a roux you might want to click on the link below – it’s pretty easy.

 blend in milk, cayenne, dry mustard + salt to the roux

Cook, stirring until thick.  Add the cheese and stir until melted.

Add de-stemmed, cooked, chopped spinach.  I prefer to steam it first.

Remove from heat and beat in egg yolks

Beat whites until they peak

Using a spatula, fold in egg whites, half at a time.  Do not stir!

Pour into buttered 1 1/2 quart soufflé  dish.  Draw a circle with knife an inch or so from rim

Place in middle of oven – Bake at 375F for about 35 minutes (I add 5-10 extra minutes so it’s well done in the middle)

How to make a Roux:

Chocolate Soufflé Recipe:


Life&Style: on two wheels

Four wheels move the body; two wheels move the soul


Came across a cool find in Sonoma, California that had nothing to do with wine. I was on the lookout for a coffee shop.scooter3scooter6

 Something  reminded me of driving along for miles on a very long stretch of road with nothing in sight except for dirt in Marfa, Texas.  At the time, my husband who was driving the VW Camper casually said “I think there was a Prada store back there.”  Me, almost asleep in the back seat: “Whooah…go back, go back – just to make sure it’s not a mirage you’re seeing.”  It wasn’t.

So you can imagine my interest and surprise to discover just at the very moment I wanted a cup of coffee and some scooters (after some wine tasting in Sonoma) a café pitstop to end all pitstops.


And again; a drive-by which happened so fast that I had to say “whooaa…what was that back there?  It looked like a really cool vintage scooter shop and I caught signage for coffee…(I have a sharp eye for certain things if I’m not sleeping) go back, go back.”

And there it was…scooter heaven with a latte on the side.

It’s everything I was looking for in a bike shop/café and to top it all off they serve you breakfast right there while you wait for repairs.  You can buy vintage vespas…and I found the helmet I was looking for.  A nice rare find with excellent coffee.scooter2




*Next time I’ll bring my scooter to have them install two side cars – one for each dog.

Photos: d. kingvespa1


My Scooter board on Pinterest: