Craft & Consumption

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Stephen Sprouse

I went to see the Stephen Sprouse retrospective exhibit at the Deitch gallery on Wooster St a few weeks ago. My father and I walked around the exhibit together, looked at the apparel on display that Sprouse had designed, checked out the polaroid wall full of Debbie Harry images, and generally soaked in the homage to 80's neon. I can't help but think of my parent's lives at that time, living in NY during the height of this 80's pop art flux. 

The Sprouse exhibit conjured up memories of an old red Sprouse bathing suit my mom used to wear. After some digging around in our basement I found an image of her wearing it (below). I need to do some investigating in her closet and find that sexy relic!


The Deitch exhibit coincided with a 2009 reincarnation of the original Sprouse/Louis Vuitton/Marc Jacobs collaboration that debuted back in 2000 (read more about it here). 

Sprouse and Marc Jacobs together in 2000. 

MJ rocking the new LV handbag line which debuted in January 09. 

The floral designs on this Louis Vuitton/MJ/Sprouse bag from the 2009 collection have a definite Warhol-esque quality to them.

in celebration of v-day

I bought some generic undies, sewed a bitty heart into the waistband, and gifted these to my BF this morning for Valentine's Day. 

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Fashion Show #1

Mark took this photo of me this evening after work. I had a long, long day at the office; this outfit was a small source of playfulness to counteract all the chaos. 
Gap Shirt ($24.99) + American Apparel Tank ($19) + UNIQLO cardi +
 Joe's jeans + Frye heels ($188)

I bought this shirt for $24.99 at my local Gap this weekend (under all the layers above).

Monday, February 9, 2009

Potato-Wrapped Halibut Dinner

This evening's dinner. Recipe here

I found the recipe in the most recent issue of Bon Appetit. Mark and I are magazine junkies and get a ridiculous amount of them. I was pretty psyched by the March issue, it had some great recipes and a write up about places to eat in Miami. I'm supposed to be heading down to Miami in early March for a business trip, so I plan to pack my BA and, like a good foodie, gorge myself on amazing meals for the weekend. My mom always said I was a "good eater". 

Isaac for Liz!

I have been waiting to see the Isaac Mizrahi infused Liz Claiborne line since I first heard about it a few months ago. Only a few pieces from the collection are available for purchase online currently (see them here), but I'm ready to buy the flouncy polka dot skirt and dress. It's only fair to buy them both, try them on, and decide which one to keep. No sense only ordering the skirt and then fantasizing about the dress, or vice versa. So practical... I know.  

I think I'm going to have to make a trip to my nearest Liz store. The cute styling and pixie cut model have me reeled in. And there are so many awesome looks on the website that aren't available for immediate online purchasing. WTF?! I hate when retailers don't allow you to buy the stuff right then and there from their site. I want instant gratification right here in my pajamas (or in this case sweaty gym gear). 

I'll settle for the polka dot ensembles for now. I can't wait to see how the pieces fit... eek I'm excited! 

Speaking of polka dots, does anyone know where to get some cute polka dot heels? I love the ones in the styled shot above.

Sorrelli's Valentine's Day Sparkle

I like the way the pavé hearts on the simple chain turned out. Boutique owners have seemed to love them. We sold quite a few for the upcoming romantic holiday. And the  (kind of matching) earrings below are my go-to everyday pair.

super easy and yummy MUSHROOM TURNOVERS

I found this great mushroom turnover recipe in Martha Stewart's Everyday Food magazine. It is a fabulous vegetarian main dish, and extremely easy & quick to make.

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 packages (5 ounces each) mixed mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 sheet frozen puff pastry (from a 17.3-ounce box), thawed OR 1 package refrigerated pie dough
  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream, for serving
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a large nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium-high. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Add mushrooms; cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms are tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper; set aside.
  2. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out dough (still folded in thirds) to a 20-by-10-inch rectangle. Using a pizza cutter or sharp knife, trim edges straight; cut dough into four 10-by-5-inch rectangles. Dividing evenly, mound mushroom mixture on one half of each rectangle, leaving a 1/2-inch border on three sides. Lightly brush border with water; fold other half of pastry over filling, and press edges firmly to seal. With a floured fork, crimp edges.
  3. Using a wide metal spatula, transfer turnovers to a large baking sheet. With a paring knife, cut 3 to 4 small slits in the top of each turnover. Bake until golden and puffed, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool 5 minutes; serve turnovers with sour cream.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


I was very excited to make my first soup this week. It was a celery vegetable rice soup that I have to admit was fairly fabulous (and SUPER quick & easy to make). Mark calls everything I make that he likes "edible", and this soup was no exception. 

Chunky Celery Soup

1 large onion
1 large russet potato
3-4 small-medium carrots (I used 15-20 baby carrots because I had these in the fridge)
10 medium-length stalks of celery, washed well
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
5 cups of lightly-flavored, great tasting, vegetable broth (or water)

2 cups cooked wild rice, brown rice, barley, or wheat berries
1 can corn or peas (optional)
Parmesan cheese, freshly grated (optional)

Chop the onion, potato, carrots, and celery into pieces that are about 1/2-inch or smaller. Do your best to cut everything roughly the same size, this will keep cooking time across the ingredients somewhat uniform. You should end up with about 2 1/2 cups of chopped celery.
In a large thick-bottomed soup pot over medium high heat combine the olive oil, onion, potato, carrots, celery and a few big pinches of salt.

Saute for about ten minutes or until the onions and celery soften a touch and expel some water. Stir in the garlic and add the stock. Bring to a simmer and let cook for another 10 minutes or until the celery, carrot and potatoes are just cooked through - resist the urge to over cook them into mush. 

Stir in the rice, corn and/or peas a few minutes before the potatoes and carrot are cooked though. Remove the soup from the heat and ladle into soup bowls. 

Top each with some Parmesan cheese (opt).

Serves about 6.

Fun fact #1: I got to use my heavy bottomed copper pot that Mumsley found for me at the flea market this summer. It was like $10!
Fun fact #2: I recently purchased a fabulous NY Times Crossword book by Will Shortz that I highly recommend if you are a crossword-puzzle newbie like me (see above next to half eaten toast). Click here to check out crossword master Will Shortz's Sunday puzzle at NPR.

Tunic Finds

I've been searching for beach cover ups for the past few weeks. Today at Old Navy I finally found 2 great tunics for only $24.50. I was very excited. Here are some of my recent finds:

$180 at Macy's

$69 at Vix 

$24.50 at Old Navy. This image doesn't do the Old Navy tunic justice. It will be super cute with huge shades, a wide brimmed hat, gold flip flops and some clustered bangles. I'm super psyched for SUMMMER!!

home decor

At a friend's house today I was flipping through a coffee table book, the Domino Book of Decorating. Of course, Domino the magazine is going out of print, but I thought the hard cover guide to interior decorating was very inspiring. I need to grab one for myself!

I recently found a BEAUTIFUL room designed by Geoff de Sousa. I found it in a recent issue of Traditional Home magazine and am kind of in love.

The room has an overall contemporary feel, but I love the cozy, quirky touches. The amazing carmel leather wing back chair in the corner is my favorite. And something about the color combination of steel blue, bright yellow, and carmel brown is just perfect. 

v-day tea party

Ok I know this is my 3rd post for the day but I'm very excited about this blogging business and wanted to tell you all about a lovely little tea party I went to this afternoon. My good friend Andrea hosted a formal, completely girly tea party in an effort to celebrate Valentine's Day. It was very cute. She did a fantastic job as hostess. The party was complete with heart-shaped sandwiches, individual heart-shaped cherry filled chocolate cakes, a wide variety of teas, and chocolate covered strawberries (my fav!). I am currently just coming off of the sugar high.

And, of course it was the perfect excuse to dress up on a Sunday afternoon! I wore my floral Thakoon for Target dress. The pink batik scarf was a gift from my mother, she brought it back for me from Bali a few years ago. It is my favorite sarong in warm beachy climes, but doubles as a great thick scarf during days like today.

what's in a name

Part of the reason I didn't start blogging earlier was due to my inability to select an appropriate blog name. After tossing around some ideas with Mark, my novio, I finally decided on CRAFT and CONSUMPTION, which stems from my undergrad colloquim title (think thesis, but a bit less intense) that I just finished at NYU's Gallatin School. 

My colloquium delved into the history of consumption in America and the value of labor and craft. Liz Cohen's book, A Consumers' Republic, was a great starting point for my research. 

I expect this blog to reflect many facets of my life: from fashion, shopping, and CONSUMING, to cooking, sewing, and CREATING with a little bit of travel, personal history, and some humor thrown in.

first blog post EVER

I am so excited to be blogging for the first time! So excited, in fact, that I thought this recent photo from a trip to Shanghai would be an appropriate first post. I just returned from China last week; the photo was taken on the street right before 12:00AM on Chinese New Year!  I was lucky enough to get to experience the 焰火 (yan huo: fireworks) and festivities of the New Year while on a business trip. 

YAY for the year of the ox! And for a 2009 filled with blogging, creating, and hopefully not too TOO much consuming.