Wednesday, 30 May 2012

notes à la mode 01

Welcome to my first NOTES À LA MODE, a new series that will be replacing the Fashion Fridays on LatteLisa. With the arrival of summer and higher temperatures it is time to keep the computer mostly off at weekends, enjoy the garden and explore my new adopted country, and the neighbouring ones. I will not be posting anything during the weekends so I would like to use Fridays to post something different.

To start the new series I have chosen a few summery photos from a black and white editorial called 'Argentique' that appears in the June/July issue of L’Officiel Paris. It has that sporty Olympic element, which I think we will be seeing a lot of before all the fun starts in London later this year. Are you getting excited for the Olympics?

Brazilian model Barbara Fialho was photographed beautifully by Alexander Neumann and styled by Vanessa Bellugeon. In the editorial she is wearing pieces from the spring/summer collections of Calvin Klein, Hakaan and Jil Sander, just to name a few. You can view the rest of the photos by following the link at the bottom.


  Have you ever viewed the L'Officiel archives? You can see its covers from the year 1921 and some of its content as well. The latest covers only contain a little preview into the magazine but much of the older ones have plenty of pages to view
  Vogue US is also getting into the Olympics mood. They teamed up model Karlie Kloss with America's top male athletes in an editorial photographed by Annie Leibovitz for their June 2012 issue
  By now most of you who read LatteLisa should be familiar with the Icelandic slow fashion label ELLA by Elinros Lindal. Their look book has been updated with the summer 2012 collection and the colours are beautiful. Their muse for the collection was Sophia Loren and as can be expected the design is feminine and elegant. The new items look so pretty in their shop in Reykjavik (do the bottles in the photo look familiar?)
  Helen of The Style Schedule went to the Grace Kelly: Style Icon exhibition in the Bendigo Art Gallery and shared her experience with us (this Australian gallery has a wonderful website)
  Sarah of Haute Design was in a shopping mood and shared beautiful items from Les Composantes
  Inspired by putting together my last week's Fashion Friday post, and the last, as it turns out, I created a board on Pinterest called style. gentlemen. I think men's fashion deserves more attention on LatteLisa

photo credit:
Alexander Neumann for L'Officiel Paris,  June/July 2012 via Photoshoot

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

creating a garden

I hope you enjoyed a wonderful weekend. Yesterday was an official holiday in Luxembourg so for us it was a long weekend, mostly spent in the garden and dining al fresco. The weather was perfect for gardening. On Saturday we bought a lawn mower and some gardening tools and we put them to good use. I cut the grass while hubby removed old and tired branches and weed. The children helped too but mostly they played, spraying water on each other. We were tired when we went to bed, but in a good way; the muscles ached a bit but the mind was calm and clear. All the gardening made me think of a Chinese proverb that goes something like this: if you want to be happy for a lifetime then create a garden.

Currently we are deciding on which plants to put in the flower beds that we have cleared. We have already planted carrots in one and for another one I was even thinking sweet potatoes. But we need to buy some nice flowers too. I would love to plant my own peonies, but peonies can be tricky. For the balcony we are buying pink geraniums - I love how they smell.

If I owned this house I would redesign some parts of the garden, borrowing ideas from the Japanese. Think zen style. Under the balcony there is a nice space (it has a trellis and grapevines) that could be made even nicer. It is fairly big so I would add wood frames and glass to create a conservatory, a space I could enjoy in all kinds of weather. I'm thinking something like the glass wall in this Monte Carlo home above, with sliding doors. Dreams like that are so much fun.

Do you have a garden that you enjoy working in or a spacious balcony where you can keep plants?

photo credit:
Simon Watson for Architectural Digest

Saturday, 26 May 2012


Let me give you some advice for this weekend: Keep your TV and your mobile off. Read the book you have been wanting to read. Write a personal note to a friend. Work in your garden if you have one. Buy everything you need for that recipe you have been meaning to try for months, make it and enjoy every bite. Embrace stillness.


photo credit:

Friday, 25 May 2012

men with ties & ella fragrance giveaway #4 winner

It is Fashion Friday and for the first time I'm dedicating it to men's fashion, focusing on men with ties. I'm also announcing the fourth and last winner of the ELLA fragrance giveaway.

Beppe Modenese, usually referred to as the founder of Milan Fashion Week, is one of the most elegant dressed men walking this planet. The above photos taken by Scott Schuman of The Sartorialist are a proof of that statement. I think style runs in the blood of most Italian men, they simply know how to dress. Scott has often featured Beppe on the streets of Milan on his blog and I think his followers have developed great fondness for the gentleman. In one of his posts Scott wrote: "I think if I ever did a men’s style guide, I would have to call it 'What Would Beppe Do?'" (Aug. 2010). One thing is for sure, that would be a very interesting style guide.

If we look at men wearing ties we now know what Beppe would do. Below we can see what some other men are doing, through the lens of Nam of Streetfsn.

Every Friday in May one lucky follower of LatteLisa has won a bottle of either the ELLA Day or Night scent. Now it is time to announce the fourth and the last ELLA fragrance giveaway winner.

A number has been drawn from a pink bowl and the winner receives a bottle of the ELLA Night scent. The lucky person who matched this number is

Victoria Nava, who I believe is a new follower of LatteLisa

Victoria wrote in her comment: "I would like to win ELLA NIGHT, it seems to be just perfect!" Congratulations Victoria, I hope the Night scent will be exactly that for you: perfect! Please email me your postal address so I can forward it to the ELLA team in Iceland.

I would like to thank everyone who entered the giveaway and I especially want to thank Elinros Lindal and the ELLA team in Iceland for sponsoring this generous giveaway on the blog. It was a pleasure to introduce this Icelandic label to my readers. Finally, I would like to congratulate all the winners again.

Have a fabulous Friday!

photo credit:
1-2: Scott Schuman / The Sartorialist

Thursday, 24 May 2012

crystal, glass jars & flowers

We are enjoying a gorgeous day in Luxembourg. The nature is bursting and the birds are competing with the music from the radio of some construction guys close by. I must say that birds and Adele are a fairly good mixture, birds and INXS too.

Today I decided to dig into my inspiration folder for beautiful flowers and glassware. I love that ranunculus, peony and cotton arrangement in the first photo and the white ranunculus in the second one took my breath away when I first saw it. And don't get me started on the crystal and glass jars.

I don't collect anything but I think I would consider collecting elegant glassware. I'm already picturing a cabinet with glass doors to store my imaginary collection. I think I should look into finding flea markets on the French side of the borders. The French have amazing flea markets and it only takes about 10-15 minutes to drive to France.

Do you collect anything?

photo credit:
via Elizabeth Anne Designs blog  01 / 02 / 03


Today is the last day to enter the ELLA fragrance giveaway. One bottle of the ELLA Night scent is left and tomorrow we will announce the lucky winner. This will be the fourth and last winner who receives a bottle of an ELLA fragrance from the ELLA team in Iceland. The giveaway is open to all followers of LatteLisa and if you haven't already entered then simply follow the link and leave a comment. 

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

paris links - merci & flowers

I find it interesting how things that are currently on one's mind tend to pop up everywhere; it is as if these things start seeking you instead of you seeking them. Know that feeling? Yesterday, hubby came home from work with a small stack of magazines destined for the recycling bin. He thought that maybe there was something in them that would interest me, and if not they would simply end up in our bin. I told you only yesterday that I lost almost all my Paris links when my hard drive crashed and when I opened the first magazine I reclaimed one and added more.

In the March/April issue of Departures there was a short shopping article called 'Only in Paris' with nice photos. Departures is a luxury magazine so most of these shops are beyond my budget but I found the link to Merci again, a concept store close to the Bastille. I had seen photos of it a long time ago and I was so interested in the design that I just wanted to take a quick look inside while I was in the neighbourhood. Merci is one of those shops that donates to good causes, their profits go to children in need in Madagascar.

Through this article I found the flower shop Le Jardin d'Antoine on 57 Rue de la Pompe that I'd like to take a look at. It's a ten minutes' walk from the Trocadéro square that has a stunning view of the Eiffel tower. (The Paris pros tell you to go there to view the tower for the first time.) The owner, Antoine Teixeira, is supposed to be a flower genius. On Saturdays you'll find him at the flower market on Avenue du President Wilson, so if I'm in Paris on a Saturday I would love to visit his booth instead.

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt
Roberto Frankenberg took the photos in the article

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

k&a: oven braised artichokes with garlic & thyme

Earlier in May, in a post called vogue, soap & artichokes, I told you that I was doing experiments with artichokes in the kitchen and it seemed like many of you were interested. I have now posted the recipe for oven braised artichokes with garlic & thyme on my English food blog kitchen & aroma. The recipe is from Sylvie Shirazi, the author of the Gourmande in the Kitchen food blog. The artichokes were delicious.

It's a rainy day in Luxembourg so the weather is perfect for organising papers and things. I was saying to myself that I need to go furniture shopping to get my home office together. I need bookshelves and drawers because there is no need unpacking this stuff unless I have a place for it. I think my friend Ikea is the solution to my problem.

Did you see my Paris post yesterday? I was asking for some tips as I'm going there in the autumn so please leave a comment if you have any, or email them to me. When my hard drive crashed earlier this spring I lost almost all my Paris links so I'm eager to add some to my Paris folder. I had already made a rough plan with wonderful clichés (Eiffel tower, Musée d'Orsay, Café de Flore, Shakespeare bookshop), but my friend and I are open to other suggestions. It's not our intention to run around Paris with a crazy schedule but maybe some of your tips fit well into our plan as it looks now.

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Monday, 21 May 2012

paris & peonies

This weekend a friend of mine, who recently spent a few days in Paris with her fiancé, sent me a long email with a wonderful and detailed description of their trip, and she included links to all the places they visited. Before that she had sent me a bunch of photos. I was in heaven. This morning I received an email from her with photos of her first peonies this season. Again, I was in heaven. Let's just say that this friend of mine knows me pretty well; it doesn't really take much to make me happy.

All I need is Paris and peonies.

Some of you already know that I'm planning a trip with a close friend to Paris in the autumn. We meant to go this spring but we had to postpone it. We don't have the exact dates yet but I'm hoping to be there for a few days in September. I know that many of the bloggers out there regularly travel to Paris and share links and photos, but I'm also a bit curious to know if some of the silent followers of my blog have something Paris related to share. Do you have a favourite hotel, a café or a restaurant in Paris? Do you have a favourite Paris district? Is there some shop that you always go to when you are there? You can comment anonymously if you are shy to leave a comment and Icelandic readers can leave a comment in Icelandic. I would really like to know what it is that attracts you to the City of Lights.

photo credit:
1: illustrator Alice Tait
2: artist Jillian Phillips via Lilla Rogers
3: illustrator Caroline Wang | CocoDraws on Etsy
4-5: Trish of Trouvais

Sunday, 20 May 2012

happy sunday

have a wonderful Sunday dear readers and blog friends

photo credit:

Saturday, 19 May 2012

black + white

It was my intention to take a blog break this weekend but then I sat down with my latte, opened Pinterest for inspiration and repinned a close-up photo from Carolina Herrera's spring/summer 2011 collection, a timeless black and white outfit that looks both classy and comfortable. Carolina Herrera is all about the white blouse/shirt, and so much more, of course. I read somewhere that she looks at them as her security blanket.

I hope you enjoy a wonderful weekend!

photo credit:
Marcia Madeira for Vogue US

Friday, 18 May 2012

coats & ella fragrance giveaway #3 winner

Welcome to another Fashion Friday. It seldom happens that I see almost all my favourite pieces from the runway featured in one editorial, even one that I really like. I think it has never happened, until I came across the April 2012 issue of Glamour UK. The editorial is called 'Coat? Check!' and was captured on camera by Chris Craymer and styled beautifully by Sophie Cooper. Model Anna Speckhart is wearing gorgeous collarless 3/4 sleeve (or shorter) coats from the spring/summer 2012 collections of various designers. There are of course shoes and bags to be seen, and some gorgeous Louis Vuitton suitcases.

The Prada coat in the top photo above is my dream coat of the moment; I cannot get enough of it. I still remember seeing it on the runway for the first time and being instantly smitten. It has been appearing in various magazines and editorials this spring and it makes me happy every time. It is available in different colours and variations and I love it in red as well.

The second coat is by Giambattista Valli, who showed some beautiful coats at the Paris Fashion Week last autumn. The third one is Dior and I find it so elegant. I also remember a soft lambskin trench coat that I really liked from the same collection designed by Bill Gaytten. The fourth one I'm sharing is by Christopher Kane and here are a few close-ups of that one from the runway.

The other coats featured in the editorial can be seen below (I didn't want to overdo it with all these photos in large sizes).

Collarless 3/4 sleeve coats are one of my weaknesses. I cannot really resist anything with 3/4 sleeves. I need a coat like that for my summer wardrobe, but it will have to cost less.

Do you see a coat that you like?

Now it is time to announce the third ELLA fragrance giveaway winner.

A number has been drawn from a pink bowl and this time the winner receives a bottle of the ELLA Night scent. The lucky winner who matched this number is

Anait, a fellow Francophile who writes the Cap Ou Pas Cap blog

Anait is getting married next summer in a chateau outside Paris. Let's hope the Night scent will keep her inspired while doing all the planning involved. Congratulations Anait! Please email me your postal address so I can forward it to the ELLA team in Iceland.

There is now one bottle of ELLA Night left and the fourth and final winner will be announced next Friday. The giveaway is open to all followers of LatteLisa and the last chance to enter is Thursday 24 May.

Before I finish. Did you see Diane Kruger on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival? She was wearing Giambattista Valli haute couture and looked sensational.

Have a fabulous Friday!

photo credit:
Chris Craymer for Glamour UK

Thursday, 17 May 2012

sensuous night

As promised, I would like to tell you just a little bit about the ELLA Night fragrance. The scent was developed by the founder of ELLA, Elinros Lindal, and perfumers in Grasse, France and it is mixed in the mountainous Iceland. I have been using it every evening since I received it from the ELLA team and I would describe it in two words: deep and sensuous. The scent has notes of sweet almond, vanilla and cinnamon, and the vanilla is dominant without being too heavy. When I wake up in the morning I can still feel traces of the scent on my wrists and I don't even use much. This perfume is definitely my new favourite evening scent. The classic design of the bottle and label is also pleasing to the eye.

Tomorrow I'm announcing the third winner of the ELLA fragrance giveaway. If you haven't already entered the giveaway you still have a chance to do so. Tomorrow one lucky follower of LatteLisa wins a bottle of ELLA Night.

Enjoy a beautiful day ... and night!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

say it with gold stripes

Have I ever told you how much I like stripes? I like gold stripes. A lot. Today I'm giving you a little peek into my inspiration folder. I wouldn't mind having these gorgeous plates on my table and those thank you cards speak to me. The photo of the living room may look familiar to you, it appeared in Domino Magazine and it is from the West Village flat of its former decoration editor Tori Mellott. That Fendi spring/summer 2012 look is priceless ... or maybe not as the label comes with a price! Striped guestbook anyone?

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

photo credit:
3: Domino Magazine via coco+kelley
4: Fendi SS12 via Vogue UK
5: Moonscape handmade on Etsy

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

lovely day

Yesterday someone rang the bell with a delivery for me. It was a beautiful package with ribbons and a personal note from the ELLA team in Iceland. The day turned into a lovely day with wonderful scents.

I simply had to grab my camera and dedicate a post to the ELLA Day fragrance, which I tried first. In my opinion it's a very sophisticated scent. About an hour or so after being applied, I like how the scent starts changing and it becomes more subtle, yet fresh. As I can be sensitive to patchouli I was pleased to find it not too dominant. The packaging is beautiful. The bottle looks so pretty on my chest of drawers and it reminds me to unpack my small vases and put some fresh flowers next to it, I'm thinking one to three pink peonies. The first thing I did this morning when I woke up was to apply just a little on my wrists ... I'm already in love with it.

I also got the Night fragrance which deserves a special post as well. I would like to remind those interested in a bottle that the ELLA fragrance giveaway is still open. Next Friday one lucky follower of LatteLisa wins a bottle of ELLA Night.

Today I believe summer has taken a break and gone into hiding. It makes me think if I celebrated too early in my yesterday's post. I guess I'll go back to unpacking and arranging stuff. There is also plenty to do in our garden. Did I already tell you that there is rhubarb in the garden? I believe a rhubarb crumble or pie is coming up!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Monday, 14 May 2012

hello summer

I feel the steady beat of summer. I'm ready for sorbets, eating al fresco, working in the garden, spending a day at the beach, and simply everything that the season of summer brings. It means my blog is ready for summer colours.

I stumbled upon these wedding photos online and felt so inspired by the beautiful styling. I'm dedicating this post to all the people I know who are getting married and are busy planning the big day.

Have a fine day!

photo credit:
design and styling: Salt Harbor Designs