August Tunes

Music is probably one of the most important things in life to me – I just can’t imagine living without it. When speaking fails and the right words just can’t be found, I will always be able to find a song that speaks my story. I’m sure I’m not the only one here, right? Music has this amazing ability to change my mood instantly. Sad songs can easily pull me down. On the bright side of life though, music can instantly brighten up my mood. The right tunes can get me into the partying mood, the snuggle-up-it’s-sunday mood, the fitness mood, can make me smile, relax or give me extra needed energy. I am constantly on the outlook for new music and fill my itunes constantly.

Today I want to share with you some of my current favorites – though that can change on a daily basis. I have no defined style I love listening to, as I listen to almost everything. So here are a few new ones I’ve added to my tunes list in August.

1) Ariane Grande – Best Mistake (feat. Big Sean)

She is only 21 years old, only 1.53m tall and I only really knew here from the song Problem (feat. Iggy Azalea) – but damn that girl has strong voice. I love the song Best Mistake from her My Everything album – and yes, I do love Big Sean, too.

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2) Anthony Hamilton – Back to Love

I absolutely love this song – it’s one of those songs that is great played in the background, great for sunday afternoons and has amazing lyrics. Generally, the whole album is great for those that love soul and jazz.

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3) Robert Glasper – Afro Blue

This is another one of those amazing songs, which is in my „background music“ folder. It’s just the perfect background and chill-out music. It’s soft and at the same time has enough beats to it to keep it interesting. It’s neither too fast nor too slow. Although I am now presenting you the song Afro Blue, I can really say that I love the whole album – I cannot get enough of it, especially on those lazy sundays.

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4) Tinie Tempah – Written in the Stars (feat. Eric Turner)

If you’re into thoughtful lyrics, into fast music, constantly changing genres, rap and are also into the british accent, this is surely something for you. Patrick Chukwuemeka Okogwu, better known as Tinie Tempah, can not only sing/rap super fast, but also has an amzing style. He is one of those artists, were you can gather inspiration not only from his songs but also his closet. Boys, listen up. Girls, get inspired.

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5) Labrinth – Beneath Your Beautiful (feat. Emeli Sandé)

Labrinth is one of those artists I did not know about before this August. Some of you might be fully shocked now, as I’m sure he is surely well-known already. If for any reason you do not know this song yet, please listen and give it a chance. It carries so much emotion, so much soul and so much truth. Emeli Sandé does an amazing job in this song, as well – together it’s surely a piece of art.

Amazing beats in combination with a great voice is also found in the song Let it Be.

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Although Labrinth has many amazing songs filled with great, emotional lyrics, many migh know him through the song Earthquake, which has hit quite amazingly, as well. I absolutely love and can fully get lost in the beats that are portrayed in this song. This song has managed to combine electro, vocals, soul and partly house, amazingly – big vows here!

 

Live. Love. Leopard.

It’s no secret I am in love with the color black, that I love pairing it with gold and it shouldn’t be a surprise to hear that I absolutely love leopard prints – especially on fur. I am usually not the person that is much into prints, especially not those majorly colored ones. However, animal prints have had me hooked since forever. Be it snake, tiger, crocodile or leopard – though leopard, in my opinion, beats it all.

Leopard prints have been in style (if one can say so!) since forever. Leopard coats have been seen on almost all influencing women known, from Madonna to Kate Moss. Since the blog hype started a few years ago, it is a must-have item in every closet. Now not only do I love the print on coats (I am still looking for the perfect one, which I can semi-afford), but on almost everything: from shoes, over bags, to iPad/iPhone cases, on bracelets, to my beloved and most-wanted coat. Today I want to show you some of my favorite pieces, most of which are on my not-so-secret wishlist.

I am a shoe-lover. Be it flats, loafers, heels, wedges or ankle boots. Since autumn is coming up and my beloved loafers will be getting too cold and some of my boots are still too warm, ankle boots are the way to go. Leopard ankle boots are surely on my wishlist this upcoming fall. Paired with a black jeans (ofcourse), a black cashmere sweater and some gold rings, these boots are the perfect round-up to a simple outfit.

chloe ankle bootsThese above beauties are found here. Similar ones are to be found here, here or here.

Another item on my top wishlist regarding leopard prints is the perfect fur coat. Perfect, of course, is different based on each individual definition. Personally, I would prefer the fur to be quite short – I’d rather not look like a teddy-bear on the streets. I do not mind it being faux, though also do not want it to look too fake, making it possible to tell from a 2 mile distance. Preferably, I would want a longer arm to it and I would rather have it going into a natural beige/brown color than a yellow tone. Complicated much? I think so!

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I have been looking online a lot lately and here is my find to some similar ones: here, herehere and a more affordable one here. Have you seen any great ones?

Handbags are one of those accessories that have the power of changing a whole outfit. They can make an outfit become more elegant, more edgy, wilder, younger or more mature. A leopard handbag gives that certain edge to an outfit. Combine it with red nails and a red lipstick and you become super woman leaving the apartment (just don’t over dot it!). Although one could probably wear leopard from head to toe – I’m the last one to say no to a complete leo-look -, personally I prefer playing with one outfit item. A leopard handbag is like that special spice that tops off any meal.

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Similar ones like the above Céline handbags can be found here, here, here and a little more affordable here and here.

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No-Wheat Pancakes

Breakfast might be my favorite meal and I might have told you this quite a few times before. Although during the week I don’t take as much time as I should for having breakfast (it normally consists of a home-made smoothie to-go), I take even more time than required on the weekends. If it weren’t for breakfast, I would probably get up even later. I barely ever sleep in for too long, but I can stay in bed for hours – especially on those rainy lazy sundays. In the end, that is what they are made for, no?

A couple of weeks ago I started reducing my wheat consumption and have basically drawn it down to zero now. Not that I don’t like it – I am the biggest bread and pasta lover – but I’ve it isn’t too good for me. Since I’ve stopped eating it, my mood has gotten brighter, my skin better and I feel all around healthier than before. I guess it’s true what they say: You are what you eat. Lucky for me, I can still eat my sugar (I love my macarons and sweet-bites) and have found great alternatives for flour.

This great pancake is one of my favorites and I make it almost every weekend once. The ingredients? Simple:

 – ½ cup of coconut flakes
– ¼ cup of almond flour
– 1 tablespoon of agave syrup
– 3 egg whites
– 1 teaspoon baking powder (no need, but it makes it fluffier)
– a hint of cinnamon 

I always start by beating the egg whites until they have a white, creamy texture and add the baking powder while beating. Add the coconut flakes, the almond flour, the syrup and the cinnamon. Voila – there goes the perfect pancake. I usually top it off with some fresh fruit but anything works really – be it jam, the famous Nutella or any other topping. Since I made the homemade almond butter (last post), I enjoy adding a hint on my pancake, as well.

 

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Homemade Almond Butter

Ever so often I read these amazing, supposedly healthy recipes, which have almond butter instead of normal butter added to it. Or even better, gras-fed butter. I’m sure there is a store somewhere out there in Zurich, where I can find almond butter – it might be even around the corner. To be fully honest though, I’m a) too lazy to look for it and b) it will probably cost a fortune because it is not a standard supermarket product. Then I thought, why not make almond butter myself? Easy said, easy done. Can you guess the main ingredient? Surely you can and yes, of course, it’s almonds. Really, all you need is almonds. If you want, you can add anything to it – be it cinnamon, sugar, honey, oil, chocolate or salt (the salt I really need to try next!).

All you need for this simple recipe is almonds (I used about 3 cups – around 550g), a food processor and most of all: patience. I had read the patience part before, when looking on how exactly to make this almond butter. Little did I know I have absolutely no patience when it comes to watching those almonds being stirred up. Again, all you need is the processor and the almonds – start with a good 2 handful of almonds to put in the processor. Depending on the size of it, you can add all I guess, though mine is not particularly large (from WMF – previously used to cut onions and herbs). The almonds will be shredded up within seconds, I can promise you that. Next you need to scrape down the almonds and start the processor again. Now do this again. And again. And again. And again. I bet now you understand were I’m getting at. It took me around 20-25 minutes. Be careful, if the food processor over-heats, you better give it some time to cool off.

After having to struggle with trying to be more patient, I finally got my almond butter after around a good 25 minutes. Done! Literally, not only was my butter done, but so was I. Done with my nerves for sure. The final outcome is, however, amazing. There is nothing to say about it. The texture becomes butter-like, quite creamy, almost liquid-y on top (from the oil that has been slashed out of the almonds). When almost done, I added one tablespoon of agave-syrup to sweeten it up a little. I suggest definitely trying it first though. I am happy with my result, though in the end think I would not have needed that spoon of agave.

I placed the almond-butter in this great jar and placed it in the fridge. I would guess you could keep it outside, though this way it stays good a few weeks. How long exactly, I cannot tell. I would suggest at least 6-8 weeks for sure. In the end, almonds do not get bad – such as eggs. In my kitchen, I can assure you it won’t last that long either way. Firstly, I will use it for baking as I have been looking into recipes and created my own ones and secondly, because you cannot imagine how great it tastes on pancakes! I’m sure you can guess how much I love pancakes. Well, now they are even better! Hope this recipe was some help to you – sorry for the major nonsense talking – and good luck with the patience!

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Sorry about the lightning – it was quite late when I decided to take pictures. One of those last-minute-but-I-must photos, before indulging in it. 

New Patent Leather Loafers

My love to black and gold in combination seems unstoppable. Now, how amazing are these new patent leather loafers I got myself from Zara? I’m a huge fan of loafers. Little do I own any ballerinas – I believe I do have 1 pair, actually. Ballerinas are too cute, too feminine – for my taste. I like adding a boy-ish look to my outfits, a boldfaced twist of some sort. This can be done with different materials, patterns, images, colors or what the piece represents in general (patent leather, leather in general, gold, or in my case feminine skulls such as my necklace out of gold).

I was actually in Zara to look at the last end of summer sales they had on stock. Guess what? I found nothing. As much as I love clothes and absorbing fashion in all possible ways, I am quite picky when it comes to actually buying the pieces. Instead, I was drawn to the new collection immediately – I found several pieces, I’m sure will land in my wardrobe with time. Not just at Zara’s, but several different stores. These loafers were actually quite well hidden somewhere on the bottom of a rack. Honestly, I barely look down – maybe I should more often! Only by chance did I see these beauties when I was about to leave the store. My luck, they had exactly one pair left in my size – or at least in store. Doesn’t that scream BUY ME, already? It surely seemed like it. To my favor, I really do not own that many shoes for that period of transition between seasons. That way it made perfectly sense to get a pair that would be easily combined with my wardrobe colors – as I mentioned before, almost all is black. At least that is the color I wear more often (yes, I know, it’s not a color officially).

Have you had a chance to look at the new collections in store, already? What’s your must-have from Zara (or any other store)? I’d love to hear all about it – maybe it’ll be something I would need with time, too. For now, happy Wednesday everyone!

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