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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Share something special this Thanksgiving!

Gratitude is the inward feeling of kindness. Thankfulness is the natural impulse to express that feeling. Thanksgiving is the following of that impulse. - Henry Van Dyke 
The 1621 Plymouth feast and thanksgiving was prompted by a good harvest. With the holidays approaching we thought what better time to share a couple of our favorite recipes with family and friends.
 We think these recipes are delicious and too good not to share. The people you share them with will be so grateful you took the time and effort to bring these to the holiday table. After all, gratitude is what Thanksgiving is all about. Sharing something simple with those we love is the most meaningful part of our lives. 

Apple Walnut Tart with Maple Custard

Photo Credit: Nancy of GottaGetBaked.com. http://bit.ly/1asA1WY
Can you believe this is gluten free?
Your guests will be wowed by this gorgeous apple tart of roses, with a toasty walnut crust and a silky sweet maple custard filling. Author: Allie, Baking A Moment. For a list of ingredients and detailed instructions go to: http://bit.ly/1asA1WY

Butter Flaky Pie Crust
My family has used this recipe for generations. The flaky texture makes for great decorating dough. Because it melts in your mouth, this is one your guests won't let you forget! For full recipe instructions and video go to http://bit.ly/I3RMTd.

Dark Chocolate Dipped Blood Oranges
 Brighten up the night with these delicate chocolate dipped oranges. A rich desert on a small budget. For recipe details please go to: http://bit.ly/1fFdqYY 

Add something extra to your table!
Inspired by the harvest season we thought we'd also show you a beautiful table centerpiece idea that will embellish your table with contrast and texture from what we have been provided with right outside.     
 The sound of crisp autumn leaves, the first winter freeze, the crystallized blades of grass left over from the morning frost, the seasons harmoniously changing; this is Thanksgiving to me.

What will you share this Thanksgiving?

Friday, July 05, 2013

Summer's Most Bizarre and Delicious Cocktails

Add a little flavor to your summer!
There's nothing like a refreshing beverage on a hot day. With days reaching 100 degrees and over we wanted to share some of our favorite and most bizarre drinks.
Adam Seger of Chicago's National 27 created the Ham and Cheese cocktail. He soaks high-quality Iberico ham in cognac for two weeks, then mixes it with honey, cinnamon and lime juice, topped by a Manchego cheese tuile. If that is too savory you could tempt your palette with a Grapefruit Mojito, Bazooka Bubblegum Cocktail or even a Smore's Pudding Shot!
Why not be adventurous? It's only the beginning...

Click on the links below the pictures for recipes on how to make these fantastic drinks. Post your favorite summer drinks and we'll post some of them on our facebook fan page. 
Happy Summer everyone!

- post by Stacey Larnerd

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Emerald Green - The It Color of the Year

Love is in the air! 
 June is the month best known for weddings, thanks 
to “Juno” a goddess of marriage.   

In ancient Rome, Juno was the goddess
 who watched over women and marriage. The month of June was named for her. It's a month for weddings and handfasting, so one could easily honor Juno at this time of the summer solstice.

photo by Easton 

The Pacific North West is the perfect backdrop to celebrate the union of two families no matter where you are from.  That is of course, if you don’t mind the weather changing from a mild rain storm with a slight breeze, to bright sunny skies in a matter of minutes.  No joke!  If you don’t believe me, ask the locals.  We are well trained to embrace the inconsistencies by “layering up” when it comes to our daily dress.  We are extremely fortunate to live in a place where we get to enjoy the four seasons.  Also, keep in mind that the rain is what keeps our surrounding area green.   
A popular trend today is getting married outdoors, especially at the beach. The romance and magic of it all can sweep you away. Oregon's coastline is one of the most beautiful in the world.

photo by wedinator.com on pinterest

Another popular trend we are currently seeing is the bridal party choosing their own wedding attire. This allows flexibility in style and budget while obtaining tradition by staying within the selected color pallet. These Bridesmaid dresses above are a perfect example of how to incorporate the multiple shades and variations the vibrant emerald color has to offer. 

Sacha London Tasha $169

Emerald just happens to be this years “it” color of choice for weddings. Funny enough, in the Medieval and Renaissance era the bride wore a green dress to represent her youth, fertility and harmony. Queen Victoria was married in a white dress in 1840, which started the trend that we have been familiar with in the past century.  In reccent years however, all colors have been used in weddings from everything from the d├ęcor, to the bridesmaid dresses and groomsmen ties.  The modern brides dress has traditionally been white or ivory but this year we are seeing her in a very modern emerald color.

- post by Jessica C. Hernandez

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Naya Shoes - Leaving a Softer Footprint

We're introducing you to a new eco-friendly brand we just started carrying called Naya. They take a thoughtful approach by making choices that matter. They select environmentally preferred materials, whenever possible, in designing every Naya shoe. Naya brings together relaxed, sophisticated design and exceptional comfort in shoes that leave a softer footprint on the Earth.

Naya Fausta Wedge only $139!

Their philosophy: "Naya is the expression of our commitment to beauty, comfort and the well-being of our natural environment. This commitment starts with all of us – and it starts now.
Together, we can help soften our global footprint without compromising style. Each Naya shoe starts with a distinctly feminine design enhanced with rich, vibrant colors and unique, creative details. We infuse each style with pure comfort using soft leathers, breathable leather linings and layers of premium cushioning. And because preserving our planet is important to all of us, whenever possible we choose materials that reduce environmental impact."

When you purchase certain styles from Naya, a tree will be planted!  They've partnered with Plant-It 2020, an organization committed to the reforestation, maintenance and protection of our forests. Buy the Zephyr Sandal and Naya will plant a tree in the recent fire-damaged areas of Colorado. Now that's a purchase you can feel good about! Shop Now!


Plant-It 2020 is a 501 ©(3) nonprofit foundation that performs worldwide tree-planting at $1 per tree, donates fuel-efficient cooking stoves to needy families, and provides forestry, soil, and biochar education. Their services not only help reforest the world's cities and forests - they provide direct humanitarian aid by reducing hunger, thirst, malnutrition, poverty and indoor pollution while increasing the sustainability of not only the world's forests but also its people.

Post by Stacey
Photo by Serra Angel

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Saddle Soap: Leather's Secret Weapon

Let’s shed the winter grime!
What should I use to clean and protect my leather products?

Especially in winter, it’s easy to find yourself making your favorite boots your daily wear to protect from the cold and precipitation. There are plenty of harsh things about winter that can destroy leather. Snow, cold, and salt are all leather boots’ worst enemies.

I think at times it is easy for us to forget that leather is both figuratively and literally skin. To make sure your boot stands the test of time, it’s important that you protect it.
Penguin Saddle Soap is the best product you can use to clean and protect your leather for the long haul. Saddle soap removes excess dirt, grime and salt stains. It also buffs out scratches and makes your leather soft and supple to the touch. 
 You can see here from our demonstration how the process actually works...

Remove excess dirt and dried mud with a stiff bush or damp cloth. Work up a lather with a clean, damp cloth and rub well into leather. Repeat if necessary. 

 Work the Saddle soap into the leather in a circular motion. When dry, buff with a clean, soft, dry cloth to develop lustre. Do not use on suede or nubuck.

If you feel like some areas are more heavily soiled after your first application, you can repeat in those specific areas.  

 Viola, just like new!
(Demonstration done on left boot only)

- post  and photos by Kacie Clark

Tuesday, May 07, 2013

Mother's Day Gift Ideas

Mother's Day is coming up, as always, it's the perfect opportunity to make our moms feel as special as they truly are. If you happen to be short on ideas for a great gift for mom, look no further! I found cool items from Anthropologie, Target, Uncommon Goods, and other online stores that are totally mom (and budget) friendly. Check it out:

Plan a picnic for your mom and surprise her with this nifty Picnic Beverage Stake! No more worrying about setting your glass down on uneven ground. (Pottery Barn $19)

 What mom wouldn't love these Kiran Luster Loungers? Perfect for enjoying tea on the patio. (Anthropologie $68)
Look! It's a giant outdoor bowl stand thingie! It's for chips! Okay, okay, it's a Canterbury Stake Planter. Get mom a couple of sets and some flowers, and line a walkway with them! (Target 2 for $37.19)

Help mom organize her favorite lipstick colors with the Vestige Lipstick Holder. Help yourself while you're at it! To take this gift to the next level, pick out 6 colors from her favorite make-up line that you know she'll love. (Anthropologie $28)

Make your mom feel extra pretty while getting ready in this Blushed Rosebed Robe. (Anthropologie $88)

This one of a kind pendant features hand an antique watch face with a mini painting of blooming purple flowers! (Village Shoes Apoidea Projects $129)

Your mom will love this stoneware Farmers Market Basket that's perfect for serving fruits and veggies when entertaining! (Anthropologie $20)

This merino wool/cashmere blend Sweater Cape will keep your mom warm on a cool summer night. (Garnet Hill $188)

This lightweight Gauzy Cotton Blanket by Eillen Fisher is a "fabulous lite weight blanket that will be perfect when the temps of summer finally arrive. Perfect for those of us that just like to have something over us on those warm summer nights." (Garnet Hill $98-$198)

Help turn your mom's yard into a Moroccan paradise with these fun Casablanca Lanterns! The design will make for a pretty shadow play as well! (Z Gallerie $7.95-$45.95)

How pretty is this Jellyfish Necklace? "Enchanting and unexpected, this elegant recycled sterling silver jellyfish is hand cast from a tiny sea urchin shell and accented by a cluster of 23 tranquil apatite stones. Handmade in Hawaii by artist Catherine Weitzman." (Uncommon Goods $85)

Help mom eat comfortably anywhere with this cool Ooma Bowl! (Uncommon Goods $25)

Wine Pairing Towels? Mom will love knowing what works with what in a flash! Two towels- one for red wine and the other for white. (Uncommon Goods $25)

Which item do you think your mom would like? You know your mom best, so pick something out that's her style, unique, and perhaps something fun she'd never think to buy for herself. If purchasing a gift isn't an option, a pretty card works too. Oh, and of course a Village Shoes gift certificate makes an awesome gift as well.

Happy Mother's Day!

post by Amanda

Monday, April 29, 2013

Styling 101: Color Combinations by Emma Klug

I stumbled upon Emma Klug’s blog, The Style Note, while researching for a post I was planning to write about color combinations for the Village Shoes blog. She wrote about the same subject, and since I found it impossible to explain it better, she was kind enough to allow me to share what she knows about color with the VS fans. 

Here’s what she had to say:

Styling 101: Color Combinations


Screen shot 2013-03-23 at 11.14.54 AM

Inspired by the warmer season that are approaching us (slower than I would like but whatever), I feel that now is an appropriate time to talk about one of the most basic principles of fashion design and styling: color. I’ll admit, I’m not a color person and my closet consists of mostly black and gray. However, whether you’re like me or you’re the type of person who has an abundance of color in their wardrobe, understanding color theory and combinations can prove useful for a variety of reasons.

A new color combination can add innovation to a seemingly dull wardrobe and can completely transform a look from winter to spring, spring to summer, and so on. Color theory is relevant to several aspects of style besides clothing as well.  For example, hair color, makeup choices, interior design, and more are all types of style and design that revolve around color choice.

The Basics:
While the color wheel may seem intimidating at first, I can assure you, it really is easy to use and super helpful for piecing together flattering and unlikely color combinations. Like any great skill, you have to know the rules first in order to test them and break them if you so choose to. The color wheel holds a lot of information and quite frankly, more than I’m willing to discuss within the limits of this blog post. However, these basic elements of color theory are more than enough to get you by and help you understand color relationships.

1. Hue, Tint, Tone, & Shade.
Hue is essentially the color in it’s purest form. Tint, tone, and shade are all derivatives of Hue. Tint = hue + white, tone = hue + grey, shade = hue+ black. These four elements are used to create the color your eyes see.

2. Saturation
Saturation, not to be confused with any of the previously mentioned elements, refers to the intensity/vividness of the color. Colors that are highly saturated are bold and rich, while those that are desaturated lack in vibrancy. For example, saturation could be the difference between wearing a hot pink sweater or a baby pink sweater. Both can actually be the same exact color of pink but are just at different levels of saturation.

3. Primary colors
Basically what you learned about colors in elementary school, the primary colors are red, green, and blue. These colors can not be formed by mixing other colors together, but can be combined in 100+ ways to make every color imaginable.

4. Secondary colors
Secondary colors are the colors that are formed after mixing each one of the primary colors together. Yellow + red = orange, red + blue = purple, blue + yellow = green.

5. Tertiary colors
Tertiary colors are the colors that are made from mixing secondary colors together along with primary colors. Some tertiary colors you may be familiar with would be orang-yellow, green-yellow (lime), orange-red (coral), blue-green (teal), etc.

5. Cool colors
Cool colors are all derived from shades of blue, also known as cool hues. The easiest way to remember what cool colors are, is to think of what colors would best illustrate a cool temperature such as greens, violets, light pinks, etc. Cool colors look wonderful on pale skin with pink  undertones and silver jewelry.

6. Warm colors
Warm colors, the opposite of cool colors, are based around hues of reds, oranges, yellows, etc. Warm colors look best on warmer skin tones and gold jewelry.

neutral colors
7. Neutrals
Neutrals are colors that do not pop out or attract a lot of attention to the eye such as black, beige, taupe, olive, and more. They literally go with everything and anything, and can be used  to slowly integrate color into your wardrobe by pairing bolder color combinations with them.

So…now what?
Once you have a general idea of what the color wheel encompasses, you can begin to combine the colors together. There are a million different color combinations out there. From prints and patterns, to color blocking, accessories and everything in between there are so, so many ways to utilize these combinations. Here are some of the basic ones:

Screen shot 2013-03-25 at 12.14.41 AM
(Michael Kors, Roksanda Ilincic, DKNY)

1. Monochromatic
The simplest color scheme to make, but often the hardest to pull off: monochromatic. Monochromatic is a color combination that is comprised of just one color. Wearing an outfit that is entirely blue, pink, green, etc, isn’t something that you seen often but if it’s done right it can look super cool. The best way to pull of monochromatic is to mix different elements of a specific color together such as saturation, tint, or shade and design elements such the texture and structure of the fabric.

Screen shot 2013-03-24 at 9.50.46 PM
(House of Holland, Victoria Beckham, Jonathan Saunders)

2. Complementary 
These are the colors that are directly across from each other on the color wheel. Because of their high contrast, as the name implies, they complement each other the most out of any color combination. Because of this not only are they the simplest color combinations to create but they’re also the most bold. An easy way to add a complementary color combination to your outfit is to start out with a primary color as the base for the look and then wear its complement in your accessory choices.

Screen shot 2013-03-24 at 10.15.47 PM
(Roskanda Ilincic, Gucci, Nanette Lepore)

3. Analogous 
A combination of any three colors that are directly next to each other on the color wheel are analogous. This color combination is the most harmonious out of all the color combinations. It’s important to note that when creating an analogous color combination that you choose colors that have enough contrast between them, whether that be through shade, tint, tone, etc, so they’re not overwhelming. Although this color combination does encompass three separate colors, only one of them should be the dominate color while the other two can support.

(Prabal Gurung)

4. Split complementary
This color combination is found by taking a base color then pairing it with colors directly next to it’s adjacent color. For example, in the picture above, a green-blue (teal) is  paired with red and red-orange to create a split complementary. This color combination has much of the same lasting impression that complementary color schemes produce but because of it is split, it’s generally more flattering.


5. Triadic 
Colors that form a triadic are groups of three colors that are all equidistant from each other on the color wheel. Because of their placement on the color wheel, when paired together, triadic color combinations tend to be very vibrant. Just like other color combinations, it helps to choose one color as the dominate color and the two others as supporting colors in accent pieces.

And remember have fun,
These are just the beginning of all the possibilities that the color wheel can hold for your style choices. Taking into account your personal style and when and how you decide to take color risks is why it’s worth knowing a thing or two about general color theory. However, when it comes down to it, don’t forget to just have fun with it and seriously take risks, make mistakes, and do whatever the hell you want.

post by Amanda