October 31, 2012

cloud 9

If I were a car, I'd be solar powered because I'm afraid of the dark. 

 Anything that falls into the horror genre including the spooky, scary, haunted, occult, voodoo & paranormal get an immediate rejection from me. 

So, this year, I'm facing the dark holiday head on...white on light on bright. 

Photos © Brian Sorg

With one furry exception of course...happy halloween!

blouse x theory, watch x michele

October 30, 2012

jurassic (jackson) park

I love Jurassic Park so much that I decided to visit it in person. Just kidding! About visiting of course...not about the movie which I would never joke about because it's my favorite. 

We stumbled upon the lost wooded island in Jackson Park while trying to find the Osaka Garden, located at the end of the lagoon. I've since learned that this historic, isolated prairie-land is full of trees that are almost 300 years old, dead & alive and it felt like we were the only ones left in the (lost) world. 

Photos © Brian Sorg

Eventually we made it back to civilization & found the Osaka Garden, which was lovely & serene, but didn't compare to the path we took to get there. I call that a life lesson (prehistoric or present).

skirt x theyskens theory, sweater x textile by elizabeth and james, leg warmers x american apparel, boots x rag & bone

October 29, 2012

that magnificent mile

Downtown chicago was just a train ride away so I grew up spending a lot of time here. I have fond memories of shopping at bloomingdales with my mom, feeling cool at north avenue beach with my friends or watching the baby chicks hatch at the museum of science & industry with my family. Actually, I still do all of these things, come to think of it. 

Despite having spent many summers downtown & ultimately choosing this great city to reside in after graduating from college, it wasn't until recent years that I came to realize how little I knew about its rich & interesting history. 

For example, Streeterville, which is now a luxurious neighborhood of high rises, shopping, fine dining & tourist destinations came about through a classic chicago tale. In the 1880's George 'Cap' Streeter, a talented scam artist & less talented captain put down claim to the lakefront land around his shipwrecked schooner. Multiple gunfights with local law & court battles eventually led to his eviction & ultimately the urbanization of one of Chicago's most famous & wealthy neighborhoods.

While I could certainly get used to this lifestyle & of course the view, I prefer it best as a place to visit (frequently, as my parents are here). Chicago has so much to offer & the sky is the limit. 

Photos © Brian Sorg

Besides, if an eccentric man was able to inspire a neighborhood, there's no telling what's in store for me. 

wedges x jimmy choo, jeans x citizens of humanity, sweater x minnie rose via fuschia boutique

October 26, 2012

weekend words

"beginnings are usually scary, and endings are usually sad, but it's everything in between that makes it all worth living" - bob marley

Photos © Brian Sorg

October 25, 2012


I didn't get my act together in time for a dedicated post, so instead, a photo journal in black & white.

fall sun

Check Please! audition (wttw I'm looking at you...)


a windy night above the city

Photos © Brian Sorg

October 24, 2012

a tale of oxford smarts

Last weekend I had every intention of replacing my phone with something that, at the very least has a working 'A' key, is able to answer a call & can access the internet. My blackberry has been 2 steps from the grave for at least a year & whenever someone asks how I live without a smart phone, I remark that I'd rather spend my money on shoes. 

Hilarity always ensues but little do they know that I'm not kidding. Phones are lovely and all, but they're a dime a dozen; my feet however, are a different story. Somehow they found themselves stepping on over to p45 for their 15th birthday bash. 

Photos © Brian Sorg

The tale they're telling here is that I am one smart cookie who chose wisely to partake in the celebrations. In the meantime, if you need to reach me, I can be found on the roof (the reception is much better up here).

oxfords x mm6 via p45, sunglasses x karen walker, blazer x splendid, tee x zara, shorts x jcrew

October 23, 2012

(brian) sorg mcmuffin

There was a time when I ate egg mcmuffins more times a month than I'd like to admit...I was helpless; they're the perfect size & I love every component. I eventually became aware of factory farming, over-crowded chickens, food inc, etc & swore off mcdonalds (and meat) for life. I haven't hit the golden arches since & just assumed I was destined to live an egg mcmuffin deprived existence. 

Luckily the universe had other plans...while you may be thinking all egg mcmuffins are alike, this just isn't true. I would beg, borrow & steal for brian's version. Like all great things, it takes time & a lot more dishes to clean but I think I prefer it this way. It's special & therefore always appreciated.

Sorg McMuffin (serves 2)

3 eggs from Vital FarmsIrv & Shellys (or any other free-range, pastured hen eggs)
1/2 shallot, diced
1 heaping spoonful of sour cream
Slices of high-quality cheddar (+ extra for snacking)
2 cloves garlic, minced & mixed w/1 tbsp melted butter
salt & pepper (preferably the grinders from trader joes)
2 Bay's English Muffins 

Heat small skillet over low & whisk together eggs, shallot, sour cream, salt & pepper, pouring mixture into skillet. Treat these as if you were scrambling eggs, stirring, eventually separating into two formed patties & laying cheese on top of each, covering the pan so it begins to melt. Turn off heat while they are still loose (you don't want to overcook).

While this is happening...

Toast english muffins in toaster oven on low, pull out when lightly toasted and brush generously with melted garlic butter. Add egg 'patties' to make sandwich, then toast a couple more minutes, keeping a watchful eye out so they don't get burnt.

Pull out and devour.

Bacon is of course, optional, but either way I promise these to be 100 times better than that 'scottish fine dining breakfast establishment' as referred to by the comedian for which these sandwiches are named. 

Photos © Brian Sorg

October 22, 2012

je ne sais quoi

I picked up this this leather jacket before a trip to paris with my mom three years ago. She told me everyone wears black & no one wears jeans (& of course they're all effortlessly chic). This oozed parisan cool to me & it was one of the best investments I've made.

Some things aren't worth an investment, like these tights that allegedly got bleached w/my whites. I think this needs further investigation, because I am a very meticulous washer & those who know me would agree that it's highly suspicious. 

Kenna-T says it best, describing their pieces as 'body-skimming, shrunken jackets designed to fit more like a tiny cardigan than a bulky leather jacket'. Because while the late, great Michael Jackson could pull off a jacket with shoulders that stand on their own, it's a look best left for MTV. 

Photos © Brian Sorg

jacket x kenna t, via nordstrom, cutoffs x marc jacobs, lashes curled x shu uemura

October 20, 2012

a tee & a tease

When I don't have the energy to pull together an outfit (or smile apparently), I'll reach for jeans, a tee, & teased hair.

Sometimes a girl just needs that extra boost to stand up to the day!

Photos by Rex Waters

'Dre' jeans x rag and bone, sneakers x isabel marant, tee x sauce (via shopbop)

October 19, 2012

weekend words

"Draw a crazy picture. 
Write a nutty poem,
sing a mumble-gumble song,
whistle through your comb. 
Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
put something silly in the world
that ain't been there before"
-Shel Silverstein

Photo © Brian Sorg

October 18, 2012

robinette's in the rain

It's apple season and I was insanely excited to check out robinette's apple orchard in Michigan for homemade donuts, hot cider, hay rides & apple picking. Turns out, Pure Michigan should change its slogan to Monsoon Michigan...little known fact: it rains 90% of the time here (technically I don't have scientific proof of this but I'm 90% positive).

Photos © Brian Sorg

Obviously a little torrential downpour wasn't coming between me and my treats, so we braved the elements & loaded up. I'd post the photo of me & my donut, but it just isn't pretty. To quote brian "you literally have sugar all over yourself". And I wouldn't change a thing. Except I'd probably buy more donuts.

jeans x rag & bone, tee x zara, vest x elizabeth and james

October 17, 2012

secret garden

Two incredibly extraordinary souls committed their lives to one another this weekend in the most magical place. Impossible to understand if you don't know these two, but I am certain the skies opened up to shine their blessing. I am not being dramatic...it literally poured for days, letting up only for the few hours surrounding the ceremony. 

The wedding was held at a stunning old barn and the invitation requested one dress for a square dance, encouraging jeans & cowboy boots.

 I had every intention of following the rules, until I decided that it couldn't hurt to just pop in and see if p45 had anything interesting to pair with a denim shirt. If you've never been to p45, you should know that they carry a wide range from internationally recognized to relatively unknown designers, all unique with gorgeous cuts & lines. No surprise how this fairy tale ended...and now this skirt is forever tied to warm memories & stories of love. Win-win.

skirt x mason by michelle, boots x rag & bone

Photos © Brian Sorg

October 16, 2012

pure romance

It wasn't until the past year that I was made of aware of the wonderful lake front towns in michigan. Each one is sweeter than the next, and they're home to bed & breakfasts, breweries, and quaint downtowns. We had a wedding in St Joseph which is also known as the most romantic town in Pure Michigan, so as you can imagine, expectations were high. 

I decided to be a responsible spender and booked us at a budget friendly hotel...because nothing says romance like a sketchy hotel. Responsible spending & my wallet don't really go hand in hand, so two days before the wedding while scrolling through some interesting reviews, I got cold feet so to speak and switched to a very reasonable bed & breakfast on the lake.

The South Cliff Inn charmed me from the moment we pulled up to the lot; it's everything that makes b & b's such fun places to stay. The innkeepers are welcoming & friendly, the place is cozy & quiet, the views are insanely beautiful and the home-made breakfast was fabulous. My only regret is we couldn't partake in their wine & cheese happy hour...next time!

Photos © Brian Sorg

skirt x dvf via shopbop, sunglasses x karen walker, boots x vera wang lavender 

October 15, 2012

no soup for you...(not)

You know you're a lentil soup junkie when the taste of lebanon's owner jokes that he'll have to give you the recipe & your boyfriend remarks that you should be a lentil for halloween. I just can't help myself; soup season is here & I'd eat theirs everyday if I could. 

While I wouldn't dream of trying to recreate it, tomato soup seemed like fair game. I prefer thick & hearty over pureed & cream-based so worked w/Ina Garten's pappa al pomodoro, adding & eliminating per my taste (for example, I don't see the appeal of mushy bread chunks, so those were history).

I do love a good dipper however...the taste of lebanon provides a super thin pita, so I followed suit & featured some of life's (my) simple pleasures, bread & cheese. 

Cozy is a wooly hat & a mug of soup. Lentil or tomato, washed or unwashed locks...it's all good. 

Spicy Tomato 'Soup'
2 yellow onions, diced
3 carrots, diced (skin on is fine)
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 - 28oz cans San Marzano tomatos (diced if available)
4 cups stock (publican quality meats sells homemade stock, much to my delight)
3 tbsp olive oil
1/2 c red wine
1/4 tsp cayenne (or more, although I predictably got carried away...I'd start here)
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (opt)
1 tbsp salt + more to taste
1 tbsp pepper

Parmesan Dippers
Fresh loaf of french/sourdough/ciabatta sliced 1/4 - 1/2" thick
1/2 c freshly grated parmesan-reggiano
Olive oil

1. Heat 3 tbsp olive oil in pot over med-high. Add onions, garlic, carrots and sauté for 10 minutes.

2. Add tomatoes, stock, wine, cayenne, red pepper, salt, pepper & simmer for 45 minutes, partially covered. Season to taste. Seriously, it's that easy.

While this is happening...

3. Preheat oven to 250, lay bread slices on pan in single layer, drizzle w/olive oil, generously sprinkle w/parmesan and cook 10 min, or until cheese is melted (as melted as parm gets).

Serve with a glass of wine, sans spoon & get dippin'!

Photo © Brian Sorg

October 12, 2012

weekend words

"things are never quite as scary when you've got a best friend" - calvin, ref to hobbes
This little muppet has brought so much joy to my life, I truly don't have the words to express it. So I won't even try.

Photo © Brian Sorg