Blue and White Porcelain

 

 

Blue and white has long been an elegant and coveted color combination, and it’s easy to see why! The serene tones of blue mixed with the bright and breezy white add instant style to everything from a striped cotton blouse to a printed pillow. If you pop on over to Pinterest, the mother of all inspiration, you’ll find countless boards dedicated this sophisticated duo, especially blue and white Chinese porcelain.

I’ll give you a bit of history for a moment – dating back to the Song Dynasty, pottery makers added a dose of cobalt to the white porcelain, creating the first pieces of what would someday be iconic blue and white, and during the Ming Dynasty, manganese was mixed with the cobalt to maintain the integrity of the artwork during the furnace heating. Then, in 1603 the Dutch captured a Portuguese ship teeming with gorgeous Ming blue and white porcelain, igniting Europe’s love – aka, “porcelain mania.” The blue and white became so adored and sold at such a high price, that it earned the moniker of “white gold.”

Fast forward to today, and original (if you’re lucky enough to find it!) and reproductions of blue and white alike are just as revered. We are moving into our new house this week and can you guess the color scheme we chose for the interior? Blue and white of course! I have some really special antique blue and white pieces that I can’t wait to display in our den, and I’ll be sure to share some pictures with you all.

And so, here are some swoon worthy blue and white porcelain if you wish to re-create this look for yourself. Enjoy!

Homemade Almond Flour Cupcakes

 

I’ve always had an affinity for sweets, especially the perfectly proportioned and delicious cupcake. There is something so adorable about this tiny treat, and ever since Sprinkles opened it’s Beverly Hill bakery in 2005 , it seems that the cupcake craze has been in full swing. Now, I love a Sprinkles cupcake – super sweet, rich flavor and it pops out of a pastel pink ATM – however sometimes a healthier homemade confection is in order. These almond flour cupcakes are sweetened with maple syrup and have a decadent frosting (disclaimer: the frosting does have a good dose of sugar, so you can skip it if need be) that can even be vegan. They are a breeze to make, and paired with a colorful liner and embellished with sprinkles or an edible flower or two, these cupcakes are sure to be a favorite at your house. I’ve included the recipe below, and hope you’ll give them a try!

 

Cupcakes

2 1/2 cups almond flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2 eggs

1/4 cup melted coconut oil (or butter)

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup maple syrup

 

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and fill a cupcake tin with 12 liners. Using a medium-sized bowl, mix the eggs, oil, maple syrup and vanilla extract until just combined. Add the dry ingredients – almond flour, salt, and baking soda – and mix the batter until everything is well incorporated. Pour the batter into the cupcake liners, and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Let the cupcakes cool completely, and then frost them.

 

Frosting

3 cups Powdered Sugar

3 tablespoons vegan butter (or butter)

4 tablespoons almond milk

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Using an electric mixer and a medium-sized bowl, combine the powdered sugar, butter, almond milk and vanilla extract. Mix the frosting (medium speed) until its smooth and velvety. If it is too thin, add more sugar and if it is too thick, add more milk.

Guest Room Goals

Happy Monday all! Moving day is around the corner, and I am so excited to finally be in our new home. We will dearly miss our current house – it’s a charming cottage we bought right before we were married. From our days as newlyweds to bringing both of our children home from the hospital to this house, we have loved every minute. The cottage will always have a special place in our hearts,  however, life is filled with change, and this change is one we are all ready for! We can’t wait for our next chapter and the fun adventures ahead.

So what am I most excited about? The pristine white kitchen of course! You know how I love to cook, and having a beautiful space to make all the meals will be a real treat. And the playroom – finally a place to store all of the boy’s toys!

We will now have a guest room for loved ones too (hooray!), and we will need to put the finishing touches on this cozy retreat so it’s ready for visitors. We’re doing a neutral palate – think white, tan and blue – including some special monogrammed pillows for the bed. I still need to find a headboard, mirror, and other furniture, and so I’ve been trying to find some inspiration. Here are a few of my favorite guest rooms, and cheers to a great week ahead!