Love using scallions in your recipes? Before you throw those scallion ends away, see how easy it is to regrow 🌱 them over and over again by checking out my DIY tutorial over at Inhabitat.com.
I recently did a DIY tutorial on Ecouterre about how to turn your regular gloves into touchscreen compatible texting gloves and it’s been really popular so I thought I would share it here too. Read on for the super simple How To.
Here’s a little DIY I came up with after running into a bit of a conundrum when trying to pack for a few upcoming bachelorette parties. Without making myself sound like too much of a fogie, I’m well past my clubbing phase, and I realized I no longer owned any Vegas or Cancun-appropriate tiny purses or pochettes. But I didn’t want to go out and purchase an entirely new bag that I knew would likely just get shoved in the back of my closet (at least until some of my other friends got engaged). After scouring Pinterest for an hour or so, I saw that the young whippersnappers were favoring teeny, colorful crossbody wallet-on-chain bags and then it hit me! A wallet-on-chain is not much more than what the moniker implies – a wallet on a chain. So I basically just took my Chanel wallet and popped a chain on it to turn it into a mini purse. The neat thing about this DIY is that when you’re done using your wallet-on-chain, you can simply convert it back to a regular wallet. Don’t you just love convertible accessories? Read on to see the full how-to tutorial.
Is it just me, or does anyone else remember a time when ponchos were right up there on the fashion-suicide list with socks + sandals and hammer pants? And now you see all of those things all over Vogue and Glamour! Such is the fashion machine, right? Well, the reason I mention ponchos is that for a long time, I had a bit of an aversion to these half-blanket, half-coat hybrids until I was tidying up my closet and came upon this cream-colored throw I received from Cindy Crawford (fine, I actually got it as a favor at a party she threw from one of her PR people who took one look at me and seemed reluctant to give it to me, but doesn’t it sound much better when I say she gave it to me herself?). It’s such a lovely and cozy throw, but I’m not really a throw person – is anyone, really? Anyways, not wanting it to sit around in my closet, I wondered what could be done with it and then it came to me – it’d make an excellent poncho! Read on to see how I transformed it into one with just a few easy steps and if you have a blanket that you think could serve you a lot better as a poncho, definitely give it a try.
As a sustainable design writer, one question I get asked a lot is do I actually practice what I preach? The answer for the most part is yes: I recycle, I rarely buy stuff (and when I do, it’s usually secondhand), I sit in the sweltering heat instead of turning on my AC and I probably only drive five times a year. But there is one thing I do that probably negates a big chunk of all of my other eco efforts – I waste food like a mofo.
I don’t know when these horrible habits of mine began but I have identified some of the causes. First off, for some reason I can’t go to the grocery store without stocking up like Armageddon is near. I don’t feel that it’s acceptable to leave the store with just one type of cheese (you need the sliced kind for sammiches and the block kind for snacking), and anything that looks tasty in any way is going to end up in my cart whether it’s going to be physically possible for me to eat it all before it rots or not. And it’s not like I’m cooking for a large family. There are usually only two people eating and sometimes just one. So yeah, at the end of the week, there’s a lot of expired food that just gets tossed. For shame! If you read Inhabitat, you probably know that food waste is a huge problem, contributing to climate change and filling up our landfills, but it’s also just bad form and a huge waste of money. Cheese isn’t cheap, you know.
So after I spent a few days guilt-tripping myself worse than my own mother would about this situation, I decided to do something about it. But what? Well, certainly I could control myself a bit more at the market, but I also felt that the design of my fridge was part of the problem (blaming others is fun). Yes, the fridge is roomy and even has configurable shelves and nicely labeled compartments, but if you think about it, it actually has too many levels and food storage areas. So I’d have cheese in the cheese drawer, milk on the righthand middle shelf, veggies in their drawers and other perishable items scattered all over the place. Now I know that this is the way we’ve been taught that it should be – a place for everything and everything in its place – but that was before our lives got so crazy that we needed to hire virtual assistants in Asia to tweet things for us from our personal Twitter accounts. When I’m busy writing a story and it’s lunch time, I sprint over to the fridge and just grab whatever’s right in the middle. I don’t have time to look in multiple compartments for items that are sometimes hidden behind or under other items and I’m sure you don’t either.
Anyways, sorry for this extremely long-winded intro, but the point I’m getting at is that I decided to modify my behavior by essentially forcing myself to consume the things in my fridge that were in danger of going bad by gathering them in a central location that visually tells me to eat them – a fridge triage box. I’m (for the most part) not dumb, but I know that without this behavior-modifying “system” – it’s really just a shoe box with a sign on it – I wouldn’t be able to cut down my food waste as much as I have.
明けましておめでとう! Happy New Year everyone! 2015 held many blessings for me including the chance to return to the enchanted city of Kyoto with my love. If you’ve ever visited Kyoto, you will understand why it grips my heart so. There is truly no other place in the world like it. So to be able to stroll through its historic side streets with my kimono-clad beau was an experience that I will never forget…regardless of the fact that we were bickering the whole time over misplaced directions. :/
Yes, it’s ultra touristy and some might even say inauthentic, but the Hello Kitty Saryo cafe was one of my favorite parts of our Kyoto trip. Tucked amidst a busy pedestrian path near some of the area’s most famous temples, the highly secular, super cutesy eatery might seem out of place to some, but to me, it was a perfect representation of what Japan is so very good at – taking our culture and making it desirable and accessible to all.
Living in modern times, it’s pretty rare to be able to tap into our primitive instincts and catch our own food – doubly so if you’re a vegetarian like I am. That’s why I’ve been so fascinated by somen-nagashi, a Japanese dining concept that takes bundles of somen (a type of thin white wheat flour noodle) and flushes them down tubes that look like mini waterslides to eager diners waiting to scoop them up with their chopsticks. Last week, I finally had the chance to give somen-nagashi, which translates roughly to “flushing somen” a try in the mountain town of Kibune, outside of Kyoto. Read on for the deets!
Can someone please tell me when all of this wedding mania became such “thing”? I’ve no doubt that TLC and Pinterest had a lot to do with it, but I was really surprised to see how many parties now need to be thrown (an engagement party, a bridal shower, bachelorette/bachelor parties, a rehearsal dinner AND the wedding reception itself!), and how many gifts need to exchange hands before two people can be joined in marriage. Of course, I’m using the word “need” very loosely here, and none of these things are at all necessary to tie the knot. A truly alternative bride might be able to shut out all of the noise and omit all of these superfluous bits and baubles (a path I did consider), but after having been given memorable “Will you be my bridesmaid?” gifts from many of my best girlfriends, I decided it was only fitting to reciprocate.
But what exactly is the best way to ask your closest girls to join you at the alter on your big day? In the past, I’ve had the honor of receiving a lovely personalized bottle of wine (very eco-friendly when bestowed upon a lush like myself) and was also delighted to open up an adorable ring pop bridesmaids proposal box (a Pinterest favorite). But when it came time for me to pop the question myself, I was baffled.
After much introspection, I decided that I wanted to ask my bridesmaids for their hands in a way that was both punny and practical. The following is what I finally came up with. Warning: extreme corniness ahead.
My friend Mary’s little one is already a toddler (where did the time go?), but I recently unearthed these photos of the winter-themed baby shower we threw for her back when she was still expecting. Since the celebration took place around the holidays, the “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” motif made perfect sense! Read on for all of the sparkly, snowy DIY ideas we incorporated into this fun alternative to a typical pink or blue baby shower.
This past spring, my BFF Amy’s beau Dave let us in on a little secret: he was ready to propose! Dave was envisioning a proposal surrounded by Amy and his loved ones, but other than that, he wanted to keep it simple. I had other ideas. Thinking back on all of the fond memories Amy and I have shared together, and knowing her eye for thoughtful details, I really wanted fill this special moment in her life up to the top with lots of bells and whistles. I know that Dave’s surprise alone would have been plenty to take Amy’s breath away but I think she appreciated the little DIY touches we prepared for her. Read on to see all of the engagement party ideas we employed and get some inspiration for your own pre-nuptial event.
NOTE: Apologies in advance for the smartphone pics. We were so excited about setting up the party that we forgot to bring a proper camera!
I love pickles and can finish a jar off in one sitting, but then I’m always left with a bottle of brine that I end up pouring down the drain. While it’s not the end of the world to let that leftover pickle juice go to waste, I often wondered if it could be reused in some way and finally came up with a solution – use it to make pickled daikon! If you’re not familiar with it, pickled daikon is a popular Asian side dish/condiment (here is a recipe if you want to put some elbow grease into it and make it without the lazy man’s cheat I’m about to show you) that pairs particularly well with Bonchon chicken or other hearty dishes that could use a crisp, acidic bite.
Okay, so you probably guessed it by now, but all this DIY really entails is chopping up some daikon (to clarify, I used regular radish for this tutorial since that’s what I already had), tossing it in your leftover pickle juice and letting it brine for a few days. How easy is that? You don’t have to go through the trouble of mixing up a new batch of vinegar, salt, etc. and if you’re using a brand of pickles you already know you enjoy, you don’t have to worry about testing out the right proportions to get the taste you like just right. Plus this DIY would work with lots of other veggies like pickled peppers, pickled pearl onions or just pickles (sliced up cucumbers). They make great gifts too!
Can you believe summer is nearly over? The transition to fall is always bittersweet – it’s sad to see the balmy weather go, but updating our wardrobes for cooler climes is always a fun challenge! You can put a fresh spin on your autumn look by recycling pieces you already own, but if you want to purchase new items, why not opt for ones that not only make a visual statement, but also support fair trade and provide a living wage for artisans around the globe? Faire Collection, one of our favorite ethical fashion companies, is about to launch their new “Midnight” line of handmade jewelry, and offered Clossette a sneak peek. Read on to get a glimpse of what they have in store for tomorrow’s launch!
Pillowcases, like earrings, shoes, and even some people, just don’t seem to function as well when they aren’t in a pair. So what do you do when you’re left with just one pillowcase after losing one to the laundry monster? Well, there’s no reason why you can’t just keep using it, but if you’re one of those people who is nitpicky about things matching, you can also turn your lone pillowcase into a cute summery top. Read on for the instructions.
Refreshing, adorable and packed with booze, these cute ‘lil watermelon line Jello shots are the perfect thing to bring to a summer BBQ or potluck. I made them last week for Jeanne and Serena, who weren’t ashamed to let me know that next time, they need “a lot more liquor.” Point taken! Click on Page 2 below to read the DIY recipe so you can make your own.
Cinderella is one of the most beloved fairy tales of all time, but did you ever think about what it teaches little girls about shoes? First of all, instead of comfortable flats that could be worn every day, the protagonist is given a pair of totally impractical glass slippers that she would probably never don again – except perhaps on her wedding day (although from the looks of this pic, she wore white heels). Furthermore, the lost slipper is what allowed Prince Charming to finally find her, placing even more emphasis on the importance of footwear in a young woman’s life. And if you need yet more evidence of the central role of the shoe in the story, how about the fact that it’s also known as The Little Glass Slipper?
So where am I going with all of this? I’m not quite sure. But I do know that I have way too many shoes. Luckily, I recently found a smart, easy and cheap way to store some of them that’s a bit more elegant than simply piling them in a heap. Read on for the 30-second DIY.