Food to Fragrance: Paco Rabanne’s 1 Million meets a good ole Indian Curry

paco rabannne one mil v indian curry

Men’s fragrance is a funny old thing – I’ve long felt that it doesn’t get the love it deserves from the male populace and am always frustrated by the lack of adventure most males have when it comes to trying a new fragrance. There are a lot of great men’s fragrances out there and sticking to old habits only deprives males from smelling fantastic across a broad genre of womankind.

Ask any girl and she will tell you, there are certain men’s fragrances that make her weak at the knees, { I very rarely reveal which ones have such an effect on me }, and rightly so. The right fragrance on the right male can make him literally look more attractive. But, there is more to fine fragrance than just making us look/smell good with a view to attraction – smelling nice is socially good, uplifts the wearers mood and gives an impression of cleanliness. Lads, you have been informed!

The Fragrance:
I can honestly say, this is not a fragrance I would usually pay any attention to. The packaging is very eye catching, a bit flashy and the brand one I associate with the 90’s when I wore waay to much XS. But One Million by Paco Rabanne features notes of Frosted Grapefruit, Peppermint, Rose Absolute, Musk, Cinnamon Bark, Blond Leather, Patchouli, White Wood and Amber Ketal. The overall feel is actually a lot spicier and warmer than you would suspect. The cinnamon bark, blond leather and white wood give a warmth while the patchouli and amber work together to add a spicy hint without dominating the scent. The scent starts off with a refreshing sharpness from the grapefruit and quickly settles into the musky spiciness that lingers on the skin and attracts..oh it attracts.

The Food:
An Indian curry. I specifically chose an Indian curry due to the way it’s spices are warmly incorporated into the dish. I often find that Thai red, green and yellow curries are a little simpler in their spiciness. But there is a complexity to the spice of an Indian curry, maybe because it is a mix of several spice ingredients: turmeric, coriander and more, that gives it it’s character. The spice is then typically tempered by either coconut milk or yogurt creating a warmth.

Why it works:
The warmth and spice that is evident in 1 Million are defining characters of an Indian curry. Both literally and in flavour the spice adds a surprising zing which is subdued by the creamy warmth { from the yogurt } paralleling the musk, patchouli and white woods. The yogurt can also add a bit of a citrusy tinge to the dish one that is reflected in the ‘Frosted Grapefruit’ top note in the fragrance.

Fragrance Tip:
Fragrances contain ingredients that can change character incredibly when exposed to warm or overly sunlit environments. Keep your fragrances in the fridge! Somewhere on the top shelf or door is about right, the cool dark conditions will help your fragrance last much longer than if they sit in your bedroom, or heaven forbid your bathroom, exposed to fluctuating temps and direct sun. Also, it just feels good to get spritzed with a chilled substance in the morning!

images via sephora and indian foods co

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Kitchen Envy: Pops of juicy orange

orange accents in house and home

If you haven’t looked through house to home‘s kitchen section now is a good time to start if any. For me, it’s like an overdose of my favourite food, leaving me giddy, sightly overstuffed and dizzy. But that’s a good thing. I spied the above kitchen on house to home a few weeks ago and was instantly caught up in the orange accents, they are subtle yet juicy to the eye. But that’s not the only reason I love this space, read on:

High gloss white floors:
Excuse me while I drool. I have a thing for high gloss white floors, the shine is like a jeweled accent to a well put together outfit. It is not dissimilar to the type of floor you would expect to see in a New York art gallery – and being white, it hides the dust and bits quite well. It elevates this space from being just a functional one to being something more.

Open-ness: Proximity to chill out on the couch and the informal dining give this space a nice open communal feeling. I hate kitchens that are boxed in and separate from the rest of the crowd, no banishment to domesticity here! It helps as well that the seating is all in the same shade – as though defining their function through colour and at the same time adding some refreshing colour to the space.

Sleek floating wood cabinetry: It took me a while to notice that the cabinets to the left are floating off the ground. Call it silly, but I love floating cabinets because they look magical to me. Oh, and because it’s a darn sight easier to sweep under them.

Rangehood: The long sleek rangehood mirrors nicely the breakfast bar. It looks as though it operates a dual function as a range hood and spotlight for the informal eating space. It brings an element of continuity, mirroring the rafters in the ceiling and the overall ‘oblong’ shapes that are peppered around: the cabinets, the couch and the windows.

Check out more great spaces at the house to home website.

image via house to home

What’s cooking my *blogships?

week ending feb 20th

I tell you what, if you’ll pretend it’s Monday so will I, and we will make it our little secret. Ok? Cos Monday’s mean one thing and one thing only over here at Camp Craven. It’s time to look back at the past week and see what gastronomic shenanigans some of my favourite blogs were up to.

Behold!

1. Elevenses, by the photographically talented Brian. If you don’t know what elevenses are you need to head to Brian’s blog post stat, where you will also find a recipe for seed cake. I’m going to try this one out soon..

2. 30-second chocolate cake. I kid you not..if you are ever in a bind and happen to have some eggs, sugar, flour and bittersweet choc hanging around you will have all the ingredients for a 30 second chocolate cake.The proof will be in the tasting..and I’ve never been one to turn down taste testing. Let me know if you give it a try.

3. The lovely Coquette & Dove announced that her Tumblr will be taking a new turn in the upcomings weeks and months. Gone is the archive of all things gorgeous and instead we will see the entrance of her iphone snappings of work, rest and whatnot. Read about it on { shutter bug } tumblr. I for one can’t wait to see what develops, { pun intended }, as Kate often whips up a tasty bounty!

4. Oh my! Flowery popsicles. I want. I really really want. { when it heats up around these parts of course.. }

5. Did you see it? Tuesday at 3p est Daniel and Valeria of Hindsvik saw the release of a love etsy video tour of their home followed by a chat session. Sadly I missed the live chat but I was very pleased to watch the video of Etsy Tv: There’s no place like here. You might recall me talking about Daniel and Valeria’s kitchen in the past after they did an impressive fix up of the space. Check out the motion video of the space, giving more dimension than the still picture ever could.

6. I love den of geek, in part because, I love geeky films. But this past week they had a post that merged my love for food and geekdom into one delicious little post titled, ‘12 dinner invitations you should probably decline‘. It’s a whose who of movie dinner hosts who have interesting personality traits.

7. More from Kitka’s honeymoon tour of Asahikawa Japan. These wooden scoops caught my eye. So simple, yet so beautiful and functional.

all images via respective blogs mentioned
*blogships is a rip on an email I got that opened with ‘ what’s cooking my friendships?’

The Geometry of Pasta

geometry of pasta

I have a thing for uniformity. Things lined up in sequence, shapes collected together, collections of colours gradiating from one to the next in subtle degree of change. Some might call this OCD, being ‘extra’ or being just downright ridiculous. But I think that looking at things a different way allows us to process the information differently and maybe, learn something new from it. So you can imagine how my heart leapt when I saw The Gemonetry of Pasta a book by Jacob Kenedy and Caz Hildebrand.

Did you know that there are allegedly over 300 shapes of pasta, each of which has a history, a story to tell, and an affinity with particular foods? I didn’t. But I would welcome the challege to taste each one!

The Geometry of Pasta pairs over 100 authentic recipes from critically acclaimed chef, Jacob Kenedy, with award-winning designer Caz Hildebrand’s stunning black-and-white designs to reveal the science, history and philosophy behind spectacular pasta dishes from all over Italy. Looking at the wonderful black and white illustrations instead of colourful pasta shades truly makes you view this as a science rather than an exercise in gastronomy, and thus takes the focus off the taste and helps you appreciate the beauty of these thoughtful shapes of pasta.

geometry of pasta

Adding this one to my wishlist..in case you are so inclined to spoil me!


all images via amazon

To have and BHLDN: Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo and Juliet

And the final board is…a classic Shakespeare tragedy with a twist. Baz Luhrmann’s rendition of Romeo and Juliet has to be one of my favourite interpretations of the bard’s work as it was the most risky attempt at presenting 16th century literature in a modern setting and making it work.

There is a very strong theatre motif in this version of Romeo and Juliet, in large part due to Luhrmann’s history in the theatre { did you know that R&J is part of Luhrmann’s “Red Curtain Trilogy“? }, as such there is a distinct extravagance. However, this is nicely balanced against the almost fairytale youthful innocence of a young couple in love, despite family rivalry. With a setting of California, the scene is hot, colourful and a little gaudy.

baz luhrmanns romeo and juliet


The bridal elements

a. cascading goddess gown – $1600
b. feathered corsage bird veil – $300
c. pave marvel earrings – $188
d. clipped corolla heels – $200

The table setting

1. flights and fancy dinnerware – $12 – $16
2. high neck vase – $38
3. filigree spheres – $373-$973
4. helianthus goblet – $8
5. bronze age flatware – $36

see also: large frog bowl – $38, rippled champagne flute – $14 and dhalia tea towel– $24

Why it works

I picture this wedding in a massive tent, with walls of layers upon layers of flowy white fabric, much like the skirt of the cascading goddess gown. While this category could be deemed as an opportunity to be bold, the fact of the participants being a young, modern couple prevents the look from being excessive or gaudy. Instead elements of clashing metals – the filigree spheres all over the ceiling – and bright bronze slender flatware provide a ‘subtle gaudiness’ so to speak.

Bold colours in the plates, the glassware and the high neck vases make this a bright colourful yet youthful setting with a measure of 20th century elegance. The additional elements such as the frog bowl I imagine as an interesting supporting layer to a multi-tier wedding cake. The leaves on the bowl has a nice curvature that is a nod to Baroque style – a style that is reflected in the clipped corolla heels. This is a look that can be easily accented with plain white tableware to make it even more subdued or with bright colourful accents to be a little bit more audacious.

I hope you have enjoyed the To have and BHLDN series. Previous boards can be found here, here and here. I cannot wait til the BHLDN line launches it’s tablewares in May…you can be sure there will be a round up and commentary about it all here at craven maven!

all images via anthropologie, terrain and bhldn

To have and BHLDN: My Chemical Romance..

The third in this weeks series of wedding table settings inspired by the launch of bridal haven BHLDN is something that really appeals to MY heart: science.

Often misconstrued as being cold, emotionless and unfeeling, Science often get’s the short end of the stick. But don’t let those beakers and thermometers fool you – for a fire burns in the science lab that is hotter than any bunsen burner. Many know the name Marie Curie, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, and the only woman to do so for two different fields – that of chemistry and physics. But what many might not realise is that Marie was married to Pierre Curie. The pair met when Marie moved from Poland to Paris to become a student of Science, Pierre, at that time director of the lab soon fell for the young Marie and a connection was formed that was only to be separated by death. As a couple, the Curies won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1903, and bore daughter who later went on to become a physicists herself.

my chemical romance


The bridal elements

a. origami pleated dress – $260
b. daguerreotype necklace – $520
c. simplicity flats – $120

The table setting

1. supper exhibit dinnerware – $68-$98
2. the new terrarium book – $25
3. bubble place card holder – $6
4. ribbon of light tumbler – $14
5. bendy flatware – $98

see also: weck juice jar set – $24 and printed jar set – $28

Why it works

There is a certain simplicity to the origami pleated dress that lends itself to function { a wedding dress } rather than the often more elaborate fashion adorned on such an occasion as do the simplicity flats. The only accessory? A Daguerreotype necklace, made with antique celluloid photographs in vintage brass. Daguerreotypes are a rarity nowadays – the first type of photo development they require a heady mix of alloy, silver and mercury to produce an image..truly an adventure in science.

The objects for the table setting all have one thing in common – creating curiosity. They feature spirals of colour in glass plates { which on closer inspection looks like a whirling solar system of sorts }, ribbons of light in drinking glasses, seemingly magically bent flatware and test tube glass reminiscent, bubble placeholders. The Terrarium Book is a point of reference for the couple to create home made terrariums {or mini-worlds } as centre pieces thus satisfying their interest to create. Overall the objects welcome further inspection and investigation – a quest for answers.

Honorable mentions of the weck jars and printed jar sets are for gifts for the guests made by the bride and groom themselves – pickled peppers? Jam cooked up in the lab using unique ingredients? The possibilities are unlimited.

Only one more BHLDN inspired moodboard left…what will it be? Tune in tomorrow to find out!

all images via anthropologie, terrain and bhldn

Kitchen Envy: A gem in Melbourne

ceciles kitchen

Wednesday just isn’t Wednesday without a little kitchen envy. This weeks space comes from one of my most favourite blogs: The Design Files. The space belongs to Cecile Boston, a Melbourne based retailer of beautiful French home wares { why didn’t I know this when I was holidaying in Melb??? }. The space has a somewhat European aesthetic, in large part due to Cecile’s French roots. So bright, yet cozy I found myself instantly endeared to this place, these are all the reasons why:

Multiple light sources – This might seem like a strange thing to be envious about but as a person who hates overhead lighting and who lacks enough wall sockets for sufficient ambient lamps – I envy anyone who accomplishes a balance of natural and tungsten light. Spotlights over the countertop provide extra illumination on dusky evenings making dinner. A small sole chandelier over the dining table creates atmosphere for intimate dinners where the conversation runs into the wee hours; and the large windows wash the space in natural light perfect for lazy Sunday breakfasts. Oh to have options when it comes to illumination!

Assorted wood tones – There are a lot of wood surfaces in this space and for the most part they each have different finishes. From the picture window frames painted white, to the rich dark kitchen cabinetry. The wood floors, rustic sideboard and more. However, the eclectic mix doesn’t make the space look fussy or messy – instead they compliment each other as they are not at opposite ends of the wood stain spectrum. It’s nice to see mixed wood spaces done right.

Space – I am really impressed by the use of space in this room. Open shelves as opposed to upper cabinetry allow the light to bounce around the space freely and stop it from feeling ‘dark’ or ‘boxed in’. In addition, the roominess of the dining room caters to either very comfortable sit down dinners or, when the table is pushed aside, a great space for intimate cocktails and chat with standing room for many.

kitchen details

Marble Counter tops – White marble counter tops are a long-standing favourite of mine. I especially love it when paired with dark wood cabinets. The contrast is so pleasant, emphasizing the aesthetics of the surface well.

I could go on and on about this space..but I don’t think you would like that. Why don’t you check out more pictures of this space as well as other rooms in Cecile’s house over at The Design Files!?

images by lucy at the design files