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Archive for the ‘Local!’ Category

oct12Watch out St Cupcake, there’s a new cupcake shop in town and she is fierce. Crave Bakeshop, the leading gal and bake shop pro, Kyra, met me for a cupcake tasting. Kyra is a Le Cordon Bleu trained pastry chef. Um, hello! However, at the age of 20, she was diagnosed with an auto-immune disorder. Thus, requiring her to alter her diet and remove all processed and wheat containing products. She went through pastry school and decided that her daily temptation was enough. She was determined to offer pastries that were outstanding in taste and quality. No more tasteless, heavy cake and overpriced gluten-free and vegan desserts (cough, Piece of Cake, cough). To support her endeavour, Kyra delivered a set of “shooters”, mini cupcake bites for me to evaluate.

crave bakeshopSitting pretty and ready for trip to my mouth.

crave bakeshop2The makings of a great tasting or crime scene, all those pretty cuppies were destroyed.

crave bakeshop3

Spicy Hot Chocolate: A subtle heat from the chipotle and cinnamon combination in the cake tingled my tongue with happiness. It was topped with a creamy and chocolately butter cream and mini marshmallows. This was one of my favorite flavors! ♥

Chocolate Dipped Strawberry: Classic chocolate cake was topped with mouth-watering triple cream strawberry mascarpone frosting. The strawberry fields forever mascarpone topping drips off the cupcake and into my mouth. ♥

Chocolate Carmel Ecstasy: The ganache topping was exactly how I like my chocolate. Dense and thick. A hidden treasure of caramel peek-a-booed at my while I bit into the rich chocolate cake. ♥

Chocolate Classic: Velvety smooth chocolate butter cream frosting cloaked a moist chocolate base. A classic recipe, perfect for everyday (ha). ♥

crave bakeshop4

Lemon Bar: Hints of almond give arise to this feather-light lemon cake. The airy cream cheese frosting was infused with lemon makes this combination a top contender in our favorite flavors. ♥

Strawberry Cheesecake: The strawberry flavor explodes in your mouth, the frosting has such an intense strawberry infusion. I could dollop spoonful by spoonful into my mouth if allowed access to Kyra’s bakeshop kitchen. ♥

The Princess: Make way for the pretty in pink chocolate version of the princess (usually make of vanilla bean cake). A moist and decadent chocolate cake sits pretty underneath a mini mound of a cream cheese frosting (that actually tastes like cream cheese!).

Cinnamon Roll: Spicy and fragrant, this heavier ambrosial cake dominated my palate. A cupcake classic topped with cream cheese frosting makes a match made in heaven. ♥

crave bakeshop4

Skinny Vanilla Latte: Brûléed meringue whipped topping adds a sugary crisp to the frosting. Hints of coffee seeps through the vanilla cake. Note: Made with fat free milk and fat free marshmallow topping.

Hot Chocolate: Similar to the Spicy Hot Chocolate, this heavenly version was veiled in a toasted meringue frosting on classic chocolate cake.

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If cupcakes are not your thing, she does cheesecake, tarts, pastries and the occasional wedding cake. Where else can you find local farmer’s market strawberries infused with mascarpone cheese frosting or scrumptious flavors that will lift you off your feet? Two words. Crave Bakeshop. It’s what you’re craving today.

♥ designates my favorite flavor!

 

Direct yourself to http://prosttothehost.com/2009/10/12/local-crave-bakeshop/ for the prettier version

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Local :: Kim + Phil Photography

sept21Kim + Phil Photography are the new kids on the block. This energetic duo traded their hectic LA life for the grass is always greener* PDX (*no harsh toxic chemicals are used in our grass and we receive a bajillon months of rain, thus, our grass will literally always be greener). Their lens captures the spirit of the moment and spills out a thousand descriptive words. Packages start at $1500 and that is no exaggeration. Check out a few image captures of their recent work.

An engagement sesh taken in the SE Portland

A bridal shoot on the Portland Waterfront that uses the rickshaws as a smart seat.

Portrait of a Lady

Henna inspired colors at an Indian Wedding in California

Even if you are shutter shy, this inspiring pair will bring out your personality on print!

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sept10Kari is hosting an intimate baby shower for her beloved friend Jami. Jami’s first born was a boy, so the fanciful frills and pink bows were not included in her first baby fete. Since the shower is limited to Jami’s nearest and dearest, Kari wants to give her the most girlish and pinkest shower possible. Hopefully, the weather holds out, as the shower will be held in downtown Portland in an urban outdoor patio. How chic is that?!

Pinkalicious baby shower

Bundles of Joy: Buying bottles of pink juices (Trader Joe’s, World Market or your local grocer) will help keep with the monochromatic scheme. Wrapping the bottles in fun colorful print and sealing with oversized pink diaper pins will bring bring out the baby themed without being tacky.

Tree of Life: A simple DIY project will make a boring gift table come to life. Once the tree is painted and set in the foam, it is ready for decorations. If dried Manzanita branches are out of your price range, use Mitsumata branches instead, they are more affordable. Embellish with pink baby pacifiers ($1.99), pink safety pins ($1.99) and pink ribbon bows. All can be found at your local Joann Fabric.

Waterlogged: To keep things simple in this overloaded pink party, submerse your flowers in large glass vases. Scatter them through the party space to keep the table clear for your guests’ food plates and drinks.

Pillow Talk: Tossing a few throw pillows around the seating area, will really make it cozy with color. Lovely ruffles that accent the hot pink and baby pink pillows are a great way to incorporate color and feminine frills to the party. (Hettle; $17)

Banner: Etsy can be a non-stop stop for most events. This is the ultimate way to welcome your guests and Jami, your guest of honor. Frills, ribbons and pink colors are all featured in this customized banner. Send a personal request via Etsy convo, as her shop is currently away due to an influx in orders. (Burley Girl; $30)

Tabled: Using linens that are aligned with the party’s colors will really make the party over-the-top. Layering a hot pink table runner atop of a light pink or white table cloth is more dramatic than just a table cloth. If you really want to push the pink limit, only use linens in shades of pink (ie napkins, runners, table cloths etc). (Table Cloths Factory; $2.99)

Cuppy Cake: Cupcakes are delicious alone. But add a cupcake wrap to add more color to the delicious dessert. Cupcake wraps come in a variety of colors and designs. You will definitely find one that will fit your needs. (Paper Orchid; $13)

Shades of Pink: While you’re at Ikea, pick up some very affordable pink vases. The chubby round vase ($3.99) can be used to run down the table runner on the table, while the tall skinny vase ($1.99) can be used to flank the food table. Both come in your party’s colors. (Ikea)

Ring of Love: These lovely sparkalicous napkin rings can be found at an Etsy shop (surprise!). Tie your napkins in these rings to really add some drama to your tablescape. Wait, did I just use tablescape. Oh, Sandra Lee. (Divine Design; $12)

Floats Your Boat: Kari lives in Portland (love) and our local Ikea is having a 50% off on all Grodby candles. With a set of 10 floating candles (in various shades of pink), float the candles in vases of water. The party will be during the afternoon, there may be no need to light the candles. However, if it is a normal Portland afternoon, it could be cloudy and candles bring instant warmth and comfort to a space. (Ikea; $1.99)

Feather Your Nest: Feathers maybe over the top, but they do add a bit of fun to the setting. If feathers are not your thing, giant wooden letters (also found at Joann Fabric) can be used to welcome Jami’s newest addition. Using the baby’s last name or baby’s initials are a great way to personalize the event.

Pinkalicious baby shower menu

Menu
To keep things simple, I would suggest ordering from a local deli. My favorite is Elephants Delicatessen and there is a location close to you as well. Their menu includes party platters that make hosting a snap. It also helps that their food is made with local ingredients and kills your hunger immediately with their fresh and simple.
If you are want to cook and prepare the food. Here are a few ideas:

Antipasto platter
Cheese plate (3 types: goat, Gouda and blue)
Seasonal fruit tray
Quesadillas de Camarones
Bacon Wrapped Jalapeños
Puff Pastry Paneer Wheels (Sub paneer with cheddar or Swiss for the mama-to-be)
Olive Cheese Bread

Dessert
Cupcakes from St Cupcake
Lemon bars (or something not too sweet)

Pinkalicious baby shower drinks

Drinks
Frozen Grapes for a splash of color (use raspberries as well)
Melon Cooler (sub watermelon for the cantaloupe)
Various pink drinks


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Don’t forget to enter to win cupcake note cards, cupcake toppers and tissue poms for your next party. Cheers!

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aug12A family run mill outside of Calcutta India produces luxurious silks. Free trade fabrics, hand-stitched designs and chic dresses are found in a little boutique on NW 23rd. The huge picture windows tease the eye with bold colors and raw, textured silk. Across the street is the bridal atelier. The owner of Lena Medoyeff and Lena Medoyeff Bridal, Lynn Medoff was in the Peace Corp in Guatemala and learned how to sew. This was the humble start of Lena Medoyeff. Her silks come from the free trade silk mill in Calcutta and every bit of their effort is recognized. Did you know it takes four people two weeks to make 12 yards? She was also a Duck (University of Oregon)! How could I not love her ingeniously ideal designs that look striking all body types?

Screen Captures1(Heather Hawksford Photography)

Diamond in the Rough: This absolutely stunning silk masterpiece accentuates the body with its smooth lines and structureless composition. A sweetheart neckline was added by the bride’s seamstress to add more to a small bust line.

lena(Remembrance Photography; Mosca Photo)

1) Silky Soul: This floor length silk dupioni gown has a nubby texture which is gives it refined roughness. Silk halter straps wrap around the neck and are tied into a knot, while the remaining straps cascade down the back. The bride raised the hem to make it a tea length dress.

2) See description (#3) below for this lovely dress

lena3(jenstire; personal; tapiak)

1) Pull the Reins: The waist line is empire and creates an illusion of length. Triangle straps tie neatly in a bow at the nap of neck. The hem stops at the floor and can be altered for any shorter length.

2) Short and Chic: This strapless silk column dress is a basic silhouette. The hem hits below the mid-calf and the bodice is made to fit. It comes in several sizes and can be altered to fit your body like a glove. Colorful silk sashes are also sold in the shop to wrap the waist in a colorful hug.

3) Social Butterfly: The silk under layer lays the foundation for this lovely fluttery frock. The top layer is layered with silk organza that catches with he slightest breeze. The bias cut gown is paired with a cream colored sash

The classic designs and natural fabrics are appealing and stately. The detail of the bead work and hand painted fabrics you are masterpeices all on their own. This is a dress shop for the bride with discriminating taste.

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may20This week’s collection is really a focus on one style or fabric, but more of a glimpse into the local Portland designer scene. I promise there is no hoity-toity here. So put down your guns and hold your breath, as I uncover surprisingly delicious designs. Feast your eyes on these lovely frocks as Portland designers bring sustainability and art together in a style savvy silhouettes.

Desktop2Unexpected Remix: Julia creates one of kind wedding dresses by deconstructing vintage and recycled materials, an up-cycling process if you will. Crinoline, silks, vintage lace, caged hoop skirts and non-conventional fabrics (ie canvas from a fishing box) are used in an artistic and feminine manner. Find your dress inspiration and be a part of a living art installation. (Frocky Jack Morgan; $99-$2000).

 

Desktop4Fearlessly Feminine: Elizabeth Dye is a talented designer that creates wedding dresses that seamlessly fit your body. Delicate detailing and handmade pieces makes the refined bride feel ethereal. Discover your inimitable show-stopper of a gown fit for a queen on any budget. (Elizabeth Dye; affordably priced)

 

Desktop3Modern Romance: In Holly’s designs, the glamour of the silver screen are interwined with vintage fabrics and antiqued fabric trims. The reconstructed gowns featured in her inspiring collection of one of a kind or limited run designs. Make a fashion statement as you walk down the aisle in one of her fanciful frocks. (Holly Stalder; $265+)

 

Would you wear a custom gown for any occasion (not just a wedding) if it was affordable? 

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