Infusing grandeur into otherwise drab Mondays with five things/ideas/events for the week:

I.  When I embarked on my pursuit of all things culinary six years ago, I was infatuated with homemade ice cream. I spent an embarrassing number of hours daydreaming new flavor combinations and eagerly watching liquid custard churn to ice cream in my Kitchenaid Mixer. When I moved into my current apartment, my freezer wasn’t cold enough to freeze the bowl (required to make high-quality ice cream) so I gave up on my favorite dessert. This all changed upon delivery of my new fridge this weekend! I can’t wait to make new flavors and old favorites for my dinner parties this month. First up: Burnt Orange - a delicious mixture of fresh citrus and caramel.

II.  Speaking of dinner parties, I’m always looking for innovative ways to display placecards at the table. Bored with what’s become my signature look (cloth napkins wrapped in twine with hand-stamped tags) I turned to Pinterest for inspiration. Within seconds, I found these darling Sofia Blanc de Blancs Champagne Cans (devised by Francis Ford Coppola for his daughter), with nametags affixed to paper straws. The instructions are incredibly easy to follow, and the result will add a pretty splash of metallic pink to your table. 

III. Wedding season is decidedly upon us. With my first coming up this weekend, I’ve realized that I am in dire need of a range of dresses for each type of nuptial over the next few months. One is in Carmel, another on the East Coast, one is black tie, the other morning casual. With little overlap in attire requirements, I decided to peruse spring sales (rather than investing in one or two dresses) to round up my new collection of frocks. Here are some of the beautiful options I found. Evening: Sachin & Babi Laurel Dress Daytime: Iris & Ink Eliza Satin-Twill Dress Casual: Milly Coco Dress Destination: Alice and Olivia Lexa Maxi Dress Black Tie: J. Mendel Ottoman and Lace Gown Rehearsal Dinner: Theory Azarinya Crisscross Back Dress. To finish my looks, these Gold Muse D’or Vine Clip Earrings and Gold Liquid Interlock Hinge Bracelet from Alexis Bittar, will go with everything I’ve picked out.

IV.  We all know that I’m addicted to gold everything… If there is something that can be gold in my home, it will be. Including the new drawer pulls I’m making for my dresser. After reading a brilliant Apartment Therapy article on how to create gilded animal pulls, I’ve realized that you can turn just about anything into drawer pulls with an electric drill, gorilla glue, spraypaint, and hanger bolts/washers/nuts. Search your local flea market for interesting pieces to convert!

V.  There aren’t many recipes that scare me at this point in my career, but for some reason homemade pasta is terrifying. I know that my fear is largely unfounded - you can make noodles with nothing but your hands and a floured surface - so I’m signing up for my first cooking class ever: The Perfect Pasta Workshop. Beyond learning how to make everything from standard spaghetti to sweet pea ravioli, we will also be cooking buttermilk pana cotta and grilled brocollini with picked shallots. Added bonus - pupils may bring wine with no corkage fee.

Have a wonderful week!  xx tt