Wednesday
Jun252014

Lani Loves: In God We Trust Fuck Off

 

Let's keep this simple folks. I'm gonna get something up on the regular quick and dirty like, simply titled, Lani Loves.

It's what I am loving this week.

Or what I just bought.

Or sometimes both, as is the case with this sweet nothing by In God We Trust, on sale from Covet and Lou. I can't wait to wear it to a PTA meeting and really stir the pot.

 

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Monday
Jun232014

Everyday Maxi in Black Silk

Above: J Crew silk maxi, Erotokritos sandals, Jerome Dreyfuss Carlos, Acne sunglasses

 

This black maxi from J Crew is as simple as they come. Generous cut, easily belted, beautiful silk, and flowy in all the spaces a new mom needs. I can tell it will be an everyday kind of fixture in my summer wardrobe. 

My new mom edit seems to be made up of these pieces. Lack of time to shop, dress or iron dictates lots of black, white, and simple cuts. I did splurge on some decidedly un-mom shoes over the weekend. Killer Tom Ford heels that are nonsensical and just too damn pretty not to buy. Now I just need a date night and a sitter.

This dress was perfect for an outing to the new Tom Ford counter at Saks Boston, followed by a quick drink out and pizza! pizza! at Mistral's bar. I have been channeling my inner bitter bitch with this gorgeous polish from Mr. Ford. Man knows his lacquers.

We were in for more hosting this weekend, taking in some world cup action and bbq'ing up these delicious Moroccan spiced lamb burgers. The beet and orange salsa is a revelation. I added some manchego and a cool lemony mint yogurt sauce to finish it up. If you need more bbq inspiration, check out this board devoted to all things grill and summer dining. 

 

 

 

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Friday
Jun202014

Who's That Girl? Women You Need to Know: Marla Malcolm Beck, CEO of Blue Mercury

 

Welcome to 'Who's That Girl? Women You Need to Know'. A semi regular series profiling women doing fantastically cool things, sharing cool ideas, inspiration, and looking pretty damn cool, doing it all. 

You know these women. They are not mythical creatures, they are real people, running life like a boss. The pal who has a retail site, a day job, travels to exotic locales, writes a blog, and plans parties on the side. Or the lawyer, who is designing a house, attending fashion shows, and launching a second career as a stylist......with twins riding shotgun. I swear, they exist. Here. In this very city, no less.

Maybe we just glean a few pearls of wisdom on how they manage the juggling act....career, family, and day to day life. Perhaps one of them will be the catalyst, inspiring you to try that {insert your lifelong goal, new passion, or latest obsession here} you've always wanted to do. Or maybe you come away with a new trend to try for spring, simple as that. 

Saying Marla Malcolm Beck, CEO of Blue Mercury, is a busy woman would be an understatement. At the helm of one of the fastest growing luxury beauty retailers in the country (along with husband Barry), mother of three (ages 11, 9, and 7), beauty maven who eats, drinks and sleeps product (but not meat!), it was an honor to chat, pick her brain on all things glamour, and get the scoop on their latest opening here, at Chestnut Hill's The Street. 

If you're counting, that's their fifth Massachusetts location, the fiftieth in the country, and all in fifteen years since opening the first location in their hometown of Washington DC.  Carrying over 90 brands, the idea was born out of the hunt for her favorite lipstick.....driving to the Chestnut Hill Bendel's in search of MAC (then an emerging and hard to find brand- think pre-internet my friends, though, on an aside, a relative unknown did come to explain the 'internet' during her final year of grad school, ahem Mr. Jeff Bezos).  With her latest store it seems she has come full circle, from Harvard Business School where she studied locally, back to Chestnut Hill, providing a go-to destination for women like her, on the hunt for great skin care, spa services, cosmetics and gifts.

As if running a beauty empire were not enough, the self professed product junkie took to the lab, and founded her own line, M-61, launching in 2011 after 5 years of research and refining. The line takes a holistic approach, using natural products that deliver technical results. The proof is in the pudding if demand for the Power Glow Peel is an indicator. Their top seller, it's a one minute power peel for busy moms like us (pictured above, and likewise, MPCC tested and approved, a little glycolic cures a host of ills in my experience!).

What does one discuss in a Blue Mercury? Summer beauty routine of course. My burning question....to wear or not to wear foundation in the summer? Beck's routine changes through out the year. Her bread and butter is the NARS tinted moisturizer, which she swaps out for Trish McEvoy BB cream with SPF 35 in the summer months, reserving Skinceuticals SPF 50 Fusion Sun block (with a hint of color) for the hottest days, when you don't want to be weighed down. 

The retailer tests new products, relies on its faithful firsts (NARS and Bumble and Bumble have been there for 15 years- Blue Mercury being the first non-salon to carry the line), and carries what the customer wants. When beauty titan Sephora took a strong stance on Fekkai haircare (banning the line because they opted to allow drugstores to carry the products), Blue Mercury stayed the course, deciding to keep things easy for the customer who needs one stop shopping. They carry what they consider the best in each category, period.

When you've dished all you can on beauty, naturally one turns to food and fashion. Where does the DC native dine while in Boston? Answer, La Voile on Newbury. Authentic French fare. She recommends the branzino, btw. We were kindred camouflage spirits that day, her wearing a wonderfully understated camo blazer (with leather leggings and studded heels), and me toting the Prada camo purse (AKA luggage that doubles as a work/baby bag). Beck is a fan of vintage and consignment retailers and promised to hunt the bag down online, though had time permitted she might stop into Second Time Around on Newbury! Another must stop in town, the MFA, where she catches up with some of her favorite early American artists. Impossible to find fault here.....or with the camouflage blazer and Valentino heels she was wearing for the interview!

You can shop Blue Mercury online, at their newest store in Chestnut Hill, and follow Marla's Beauty Blog for more.

 

Five Questions with MPCC. Rapid fire and irreverent.


What TV show do you need to watch every week?

Downtown Abbey when it's on!

Chocolate or vanilla?

Chocolate

Favourite scent?

Acqua de Parma 

Best Halloween costume?

Wonder Woman

Power Lipstick?

NARS Fast Ride

 

 

Check out more Who's That Girl? here:

Hannah Blount

Brittney Rothweiler

Elisha Daniels

 

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Wednesday
Jun182014

Jardin Soiree: Food, Decor, & Wine Bracket Details!

 

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We kicked off the summer in high style last weekend, finally hosting our Jardin Soiree. We couldn't have picked a better day really, perfect weather (eighty plus degrees), French inspired playlist at the ready, and of course pretty decor provided from my local Pier 1 Imports. 

After all this shopping and prep, I was happy to finally have the day arrive and very ready for a taste, or ten, of wine! We welcomed friends with a rose vs white wine bracket, a perfect way for our mom's group to get out with the kids and the husband's (who all met for the first time). Nothing like lots of wine and smack talk to bring a group together....much more effective than name tags!

I stuck with all the treasures and steals I found the week before (and posted about here). Decor was French garden party ready with eyelet and lace paper lanterns hanging from our umbrella, a vineyard wine jug as our tasting table centerpiece, wood and glass platters, cake stands and cloches were stacked with cheese, crackers and tasty sweets, and of course a Parisian accent or two.....all tres, tres, jolie! Everything worked together seamlessly, which made set up a snap and allowed me extra time to focus on the nibblies and wine bracket set up. From the rustic floral runners, to the Provencal inspired pillows, copper beverage tubs, tiled bar cart, and the pretty glass dish with the Eiffel tower (which served as our bottle opener stand), everything came together for the perfect outdoor look. 

Now, how does one host a wine bracket? Here are the rules and finer points outlined for guests:

 

  • Bring two of the same bottles per guest/couple, one for entry into the wine bracket and one for entry into the prize pool. If the wine should be chilled, bring one cool and ready to drink.
  • Bottles should be $15-20 each, white (any type or region) or rose, though clearly this would work with  any type of wine or specific region.
  • Bring wine disguised in a bag and deposit with host/ess, who will coordinate all entries (and be excluded from the voting, not the sipping). I opted to disguise all wines and then shuffle them up, allowing myself  to vote!
  • All bottles are numbered and disguised with a classy paper bag for multiple rounds of voting. Helpful to  have like types against each other, but not totally necessary.
  • Each wine goes head to head with another (at separate stations) until voting is finished by all guests.
  • Ballots are counted, the losing vino unmasked, while the winning bottle advances to the next round where it goes against another finalist. *Make sure to limit samples so there is enough for each round! You might want to provide a mini decanter or glass with a mark for suggested serving size per pour.
  • To the winner goes the spoils! The guest with the winning bottle will take home the entire prize pool of all bottles entered. 

 

 

Now for the menu! Since white and rose were the wines of the day, we stuck with light lunch fare- think fig, manchego & prosciutto; pesto, roasted pepper and mozzarella; and rosemary ham, garlic jam, and camembert sandwiches, which only required assembly just before serving. Be sure to set out plenty of water, which you can easily make look like a million by adding some berries and mint! We filled our other Pier 1 drink dispenser with a lavender honey lemonade (recipe for lavender simple syrup here). And don't forget to stock up on a few red bottles and some beers for those non-wine drinkers, who I suppose might exist;) As if there weren't enough adult beverages on the menu, we rounded things out with a cocktail as well, my personal favorite, champagne mixed with lavender honey syrup.

And finally, the winner! An entry from left field swept the contestants and won by overwhelming majority: the Edelzwicker from Navaroo Vineyards. Say what? It's a white blend traditionally out of Alsace, that contains Pinot Gris, Gewürztraminer, Riesling and Muscat. Delish is all you need to know. Sante!



 

Compensation was provided by Pier 1 via Mode Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Pier 1.
Monday
Jun162014

A Pink Kind of Affair

Photos: Jessica Delaney Photography

 

Above: Issa dress, Derek Lam heels via TJ Maxx (for reals, snakeskin under 70 bucks!), amethyst earrings and ring via Skinner Auctioneers and Appraisers

 

Who doesn't like an excuse to get dressed up? I don't need much of an excuse, but the annual Boston BCRF Hot Pink party was definitely a fun one. You remember the one, with oh, Mr. Jon Bon Jovi?!

Also a great excuse to pick up a pretty in pink kind of dress. The knit and cut of these Issa dresses is seriously the most forgiving. Perfect for a new-ish (I can still sort of claim that, right?) mom. If you need a summer party or wedding dress, look to get one of these on sale. Full-price, kind of a splurge, on sale....now we're talking!

We toasted our first Father's Day this weekend, by cooking up some indulgent food, drinking some delicious wine, and gifting hubs with those things you know he wants but would never buy himself (namely Lulu sweats, fancy socks with lighting bolts, and aged booze...which I may even cave and let him sip with a cigar). I'll avoid too much mush here but he is one hell of a daddy-o. Daphne is one lucky girl and I am one lucky wifey.

Hope you all toasted your special guy!

 

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