Archive for January, 2012
As the end of January is upon us, some of us many starting contemplating those New Year’s resolutions made at a moment of euphoria (many times champagne induced!) I know a lot of my friends do so with an impending dread, a sense of failure and use it as a moment to become depressed, sinking further into a hole of despair.
Personally I like to take the entire month of December and make a list of all the wonderful things that I have accomplished that year, enjoying each accomplishment and how it has changed my life in expected and sometimes unexpected ways. When I do this, I have found that in retrospect there were so many hidden surprises, so many things that I had envisioned but hadn’t stayed mentally alert to their completion or so many things that blossomed in front of me that I didn’t properly acknowledge.
So I normally don’t take the 31 of January as an opportunity to beat myself up for not accomplishing anything – but as a moment to revel in the promises of the New Year – in this case the year of the Dragon. I try to take some time out of my day and envision the wonders of all my New Year Dreaming – looking for all the great signs that confirm I am going in the right direction (even the littlest indication is a point to celebrate and appreciate). I think resolutions should be fun, should be exciting, anticipated with joy and enthusiasm…so no need to make a list of what’s not done but enjoy the thrill of what will be done!
With this in mind I want to share a video that a follow blogger put on line that truly filled me with enthusiasm and inspiration. http://wp.me/p1PcAk-2dn
Share your New Year Inspirations with me:
When my Italian friends hear that I am from Miami, they always ask – well what are you doing here? As if to them it were a no brain-er – Florida equals sun and fun equals beach and relax. But we all know that when you “live” somewhere – and that somewhere is also where you work – then you have a tendency to skip over all the fun, sun, beaches and relax. I love Florida with its unique environment between the ocean, the gulf, the swamp, hammocks and everglades. I do miss getting up in the morning and not having to reach for a bathrobe because you will freeze your bum off with the first step out of bed and I miss eating all that good fresh fish. I happened to catch a glace of this video and it just brought it all back.
It’s the same thing with all the Italians that live here in Florence Italy – they have these wonderful landscapes, beautiful artwork, great food and even better wine. So when I tell some one that I live and work in Florence, Tuscany and they say lucky you, (as an expat transplanted here) I just agree with them. I feel very lucky to be living here. In fact every time I go over the Arno river and get a quick glimpse of the Palazzo Signoria and Ponte Vecchio, I am reminded of how god it feels to be living here.
Just updated our New 2012 Collection from Campomaggi with two new pieces – a credit card holder and a cell phone (or iPhone or Smartphone or iPod) holder. Both come in the two classic Campomaggi washed leather colors of dark brown and cognac. Now all the new gadgets are available in two colors including the iPad case.
These leather fashion accessories are the per compliment to your Campomaggi collection – they fit into any of the bags and match up with the rustic look that is so characteristic with this line. Coming in February we will be highlight a new bag with an enticing external pocket in lattice leather … opps I have said too much!
Hear is a sneak preview of the two new pieces, click on the photos for more details and prices:
This afternoon at approximately 4 pm local time I felt the office building crick and crack. If it weren’t for the fact that we just had seismic activity already this week in the region Reggio Emilia, I probably would have just shrugged it off as a truck passing or someone moving something on the floor above. But since my office overlooks the road – and I can attest there were no trucks and since there is no one at home on the floor above there were no obvious excuses. So a bit dazed and a little amazed, I thought “WOW, I just experience a real live earthquake!” It never occurred to me to run outside or that it was a scary thing (though my younger colleague was definitely on the nervous side when I asked her “did you just feel what I felt?” and confirmed her worse suspicions.)
News puts it at a magnitude of 5.4 – and it was felt all over the place. Some even wrote that pictures fell came tumbling down, things fell of the shelves, stucco decorations on buildings cracked and fell…I am glad all I heard was crick and crack!
Never ever really thought of Italy as being an area subjected to earthquakes when I started imagining my European travels, but my 14 years in Casentino (a lovely valley located about 75 km southeast of Florence) proved me wrong. I am a bit of a history addict – love to learn the story about any place, and it became quite clear to me that something was a bit fishy when church after church included tidbits of how it had been rebuilt after this earthquake or that earthquake. Thinking I would surprise my Italian friends with a little know fact I myself was surprised when then said, yup this is a seismic area!
Will I be ready? Normally I wait until the last minute then scour the net trying to find the perfect gift that matches my “stato d’anima” to give my special someone. Every once and a while I will have a list of possible things in my head … and my heart … and even though I will search and search I usually always fall back on that very first idea that sprung up.
Here is my Valentine gift board for this year:
$100 - runningwarehouse.com
€50 - pierotucci.com
€538 - pierotucci.com
€360 - pierotucci.com
£130 - vanmildert.com
€70 - pierotucci.com
$50 - lordandtaylor.com
but always with the elegant style of the Fiorentine man. Casual yet precise, colorful yet not loud, mixing and matching textures and fashions, conscious of trends but always making a personal statement and always very, very sexy.
$145 - nordstrom.com
$463 - coggles.com
£160 - numbersixlondon.com
$149 - coggles.com
$129 - orvis.com
$600 - target.com
€600 - pierotucci.com
Saturday was a lovely day with a crisp blue sky, temps were incredibly mild for mid January and only a few cotton ball clouds floating along. All in all, it was just right for slipping on all my holiday wardrobe (a new handbag, a beautiful jacket and some boots with a heel to die for) climbing on the back of my handsome Hubby’s motorbike and going into town.
There doesn’t need to be a “reason” to go into town – especially in Italy. Going out is sometimes just all about getting dressed to go out and then strolling the streets in your finery…which I happened to do extremely well this Saturday. (My Hubby was looking quite charming as well.) Of course there was the added plus that everyone has a sale going on (even if after the hoildays who has money to spend on more stuff!!), but in any case the window shopping was well worth the effort AND since Uomo Pitti just finished up here in Florence there were lots of trendy “vetrine” showing off Spring 2012 New collections. Of course all of this ohhing and ahhing in the windows will work up an appetite, and I am not one to shrink at the thought of a plate piled high with pasta! Around 1 PM we could resist no longer it was either go home and cook (and who wants to do that when you are all dressed up and looking good) or find ourselves a little hole in the wall.
We opted for exploring some new culinary delights in Florence and it was well worth the effort. Hubby started walking with a purpose when we agreed that we were eating in town. We found this place via word of mouth, apparently when the “guys” are playing soccer on Thursday night they talk about more than just the game and girls. The menu on the outside looked rather typical, with all the traditional dishes: crostini, pasta, bistecca Fiorentina, cantucci – but there were a few chef specials of the day that caught our eye. Prices appeared to be within the norm and it was just far away enough from the “city center” not to be horribly touristy.
As we walked in we were immediately struck by the cosy environment, the walls were in gray stone giving a hint of history and the tables were close – but not too close. We choose a table for two and began to serious look over the menu. The waiter and waitress were attentive, friendly but not pressing – water, wine and then they left us to devour the menu. My attention had be caught by the chef special of burrata with trufles and Hubby had his eye on the wild boar cold cuts. We opted for a special platter of mixed antipasti for two (24.-Euro) and I for one was pleasantly surprised. The cold cuts were fresh and quality – the crostini were good (even if I would have preferred they used Tuscan bread instead of the frusta … but that’s a personal gripe and by no means indicates the quality was disappointing) and the burrata …. well, in a word perfect!
The wine was also a pleasant surprise, though it is hard to get bad wine in Tuscany. We were told it was a a Chianti red with 2 years of aging (1 liter 12.-Euro). In fact, I always suggest that people choose the house wine for this reason – but as in every case there are grades of good. This wine was an excellent house wine – and we drank it easily …. OK and willingly (Ha Ha) Nothing like window shopping to get you in the mood for a glass of wine. As for the pasta dish the portions were abundant – though not exaggeratedly so. I had a little more luck than Hubby, I ordered pici with capriolo (11.-Euro). The waiter assured me that they make the flour and water pici (like a super think spaghetti) there in the restaurant – and the plate was truly worth exploring. No need to add cheese because the flavour of the meat (capriolo is venison) with the pasta was a perfect match. Hubby choose paperdelle with cinghiale (10.-Euro) – a wide noodle with wild boar sauce. It was good but perhaps the pasta needed to be drained a bit more because the plate had a bit of a diluted taste to it – not so much that it stopped us from licking everything clean but enough to note.
We didn’t opt for a main course – however those that did all leaned towards the Bistecca Fiorentina, and if the smell and look were anything to go by it looked as if the restaurant could be proud of their offering.
If you are roaming the streets and need to rest your feet – I can enthusiastically suggest : Osteria del Cinghiale Bianco, Borgo S. Jacopo 43 r. (the r after the number means when you are looking for this address you need to look for the numbers written in RED).
January is normally one of those let down months, y’know after all the holidays, food feasting, present giving, days off and free smiles and laughter its a tough act to follow – but we can get pretty excited about January here in the office. We are getting ready to show our new leather jackets for the 2012 collection. It’s actually kind of fun – kind of like a shopping spree, where you can try everything on, there are no limits to how much you spend and everyone acts like it is already yours, suggesting nips and tucks to make it fit better. I love it!
All our seamstresses and craftsman come to the drawing board with various designers and put together lots of rough drafts for us to look at – tempting us with new colors, types of leathers, daring designs and re-makes of some classics. So we can spend day after day, swirling, preening and dancing in front of the mirror trying to decide what our shoppers are going to go wild over!
Last year, we narrowed down our selection and choose about 15 new pieces but we experimented with leather clothes, like vests and pants in leather. The vests were a hit – especially with the men. And the short leather skirt with the front slit, that went over very well (I imagine with the men as well as the women! at least it worked that way at my house, he couldn’t keep his
hands I mean eyes off of me) As far as the jackets were concerned – frills and peplum were in last year – but not for 2012. Our color selection was more towards trendy with lilacs and burgundies.
This year promises to be even more fun – we are cleaning out many style that we have had with us for at least 4 – 5 years and replacing them with updated versions in different types of leather and many new colors. We will be playing with extra soft leathers – almost like suede that have absorbed the coloring in various ways, sometimes giving the leather that washed vintage look. Below I have picket out three of my favorites for this year. The first color reminds me almost of a “marinaio” or sailors yellow slicker, but without being too loud. The style we have opted for this mens jacket highlights some decorative stitching on the front and simple lines in the waist. The leather is supple and the color has taken in a shade that shows more intense in certain lights.
Another favorite will be featured in one of our ladies jackets and it is what I would call a dusty brown. The soft brushed leather gives it that vintage look, as if it had been hidden in the closet just waiting to come back into style. It is extremely light which makes this ideal for spring and summer wearing.
I like strong colors, but I prefer them to have an earthy feel to them, and this green is right up my alley. Almost a lime green but not that “in your face” this leather is smooth and soft … like a babies bottom. The style we have picked for this jacket will be perfect for the spring and summer evenings, it is a little fitted but definitely lightweight and has a mandarin collar.
Our new jackets will be coming soon on line – so check the blog out in February when we give each designer their own space, highlighting details on each style.
An introduction to a the high resistant, very elegant leather. Commonly used in high leather producers for handbags such as Prada, Ferragamo, Pierotucci and many other important fashion designer. The distinctive markings on this leather is a series of diagonal lines, in fact indications are that the Saffiano leather was invented by Mario Prada himself. In any case this design creates a highly scratch resistant surface making this type of leather ideal for business bags, briefcases.
This is the creativeness of Kina Naee from Polyvore, where she inserted one of our brand new messenger bag – thanks a lot Kina Naee.
$550 - allsaints.com
$7.99 - tillys.com
£78 - vanmildert.com
$51 - endless.com
$1,595 - net-a-porter.com
€175 - pierotucci.com
$28 - zennioptical.com