Photo by Arthur Shwab.
When my best friend Whitney invited Gabe and I to join a group of friends at Belle Clementine
, little did I know that it would soon become one of my all-time favorite restaurants. Not only is the food local, organic and absolutely delicious but the ambiance is what makes this restaurant stand out. Dave Sanford, owner and head chef, has turned Belle Clementine
into a place of community - a family-style restaurant that brings together the best of friendship and food. I'm so pleased to bring my readers an interview with Dave.
JVP: First, congratulations on great success so far! I've been twice to Belle Clementine
and know I'll be back again and again to see what you're cooking! Tell us the inspiration behind the name?DS: Thank you! Belle Clementine is named for my paternal grandmother - Belle Clementine Sanford. She was an artist professionally, and I grew up surrounded by her artwork in my parents' home. Nana Belle, as we called her, always inspired me creatively, and I know that she would have appreciated the creative process that I pursued to bring this place into being. I thought it would only be fitting to name it for her. She also was a bit of a social butterfly, and would have totally loved the 'dinner party' experience that we create each night. Of course, it didn't hurt that she had a very beautiful name.
JVP: Many people know your name from the Corson Building. When and how did you make the transition over? What inspired you to open Belle Clementine
?DS: I'm really proud of the work that I did to help get Corson up and running. I feel fortunate to have worked with and learned a ton from Matt, Wylie, and my co-workers - the restaurant and the people will always have a special place in my heart. I started working in earnest on Belle Clementine late Summer of 2010, but I'd say that it's really the culmination of thoughts and ideas that I'd been generating over the last 7 years or so. Inspiration for Belle Clementine comes from many places, including my travels abroad. In the País Vasco of Northern Spain in particular, there is an incredibly rich culinary tradition of eating together. During a number of trips to the region, I was fortunate enough to experience the unique "sociedades gastronomicas" (gastronomic societies) - essentially dining halls where people gather to eat and socialize, oftentimes sharing in the sourcing of ingredients and the cooking too. In addition, both personally and professionally I've often found myself bridging diverse social worlds, and seeking ways to bring people from each of those worlds together. Over the years, I came to the realization that a shared meal is one of the best ways to do just that. Culinarily speaking, I find inspiration in the incredible diversity of ingredients available here in the Pacific Northwest.
JVP: Tell us about the family style portions and why you feel it helps create community?DS: Almost everything that we serve at Belle Clementine arrives on platters for guests at each table to share. We also create a single menu for each night and have specific meal times, because they are conducive to everyone eating together - a shared experience. Whether at home or abroad, we probably all have stories of a meal experiences that seem to transcend language, cultural, or geographical differences. At the end of the day, we are all human and we all have to eat. Even if we have nothing else in common, we all share that need, so satisfying it together taps into a universal human experience on a very core level. Beyond that, who doesn't love a dinner party?
JVP: We know you only use local organic ingredients. A partciular favorite farm or ingredient you can't live without?DS: Almost all of our ingredients come from close to home, yes. It's a challenge to pick just one ingredient, as the beauty of eating with the seasons is that you're always enjoying each ingredient at its respective peak AND always in a state of eager anticipation for that first bite of the next crop to come to harvest. Personally, I find myself craving the chicories that Jason and Siri grow at Local Roots Farm in Duvall. Chicories are a whole family of bitter lettuces, like radicchio, escarole, and endive. Local Root's radicchio di Treviso variety is a personal favorite. Belle Clementine is open Thursday-Sunday for dinner & Sunday brunch. Click HERE for reservations.
Mini pendants and bracelets can be stacked or worn alone.
Color, Color, Color!
SVP of Merchandising, Sue Bell and the buying team are front and center when it comes to predicting trends. They design, discuss with vendors and are constantly gallivanting the world to find the best product for our customers - which means the HIGHEST quality at unbeatable prices. I sat down with Sue to talk about what we can expect to trend this spring and summer. I also threw in a fall question as well, because if you're like me, I'm starting my birthday gift list already. (I'm an October baby).
JVP: Tell us about COLOR this spring! What are the most popular hues taking form for Spring 12?SB: The most popular colors this season are vibrant oranges and shades of tangerine; beautiful gradations of greens; ocean hues of blue and turquoise
This Blue Topaz cocktail ring is well under $200!
JVP: If you must choose one must-have jewelry accessory to rock, what would it be?SB: Hands down…a cocktail ring!
JVP: What’s the hype about minis? Tell us about Blue Nile’s mini collection and why it’s trending?SB: Minis are prevalent on the celebrity scene in a variety of metals and icons. It’s all about making it your look! Personalize! Super fun and accessibl
JVP: Are charms
still making a comeback? SB: Charms are a perennial favorite and a natural jewelry wardrobe staple. Collected over the years, they tell your personal story and remind you of all your life experiences and memories.
Customize your dream engagement ring. This 2 ctw round diamond is in a white gold halo setting.
JVP: We know wedding season is just around the corner….can you tell us about upcoming trends in engagement jewelry?SB: The vintage look continues to be hot in the engagement ring world. Halo settings continue to be a popular choice – single halo, double halo, micropave split shank, fancy shape diamonds… The halo setting is the perfect style to optimize the look of your center stone. In April, we will be introducing additional vintage looks; some inspired by Spring with hints of flowers and butterflies.
JVP: And what can we except for summer & fall in fashion fine jewelry?SB: Color will still be hot in fashion jewelry. As we go into Fall we will be featuring some richer tones of brown, orange, gold and green. Gold and rose gold, with their warm tones, will be popular moving through late summer and into Fall. Summer and transition introduce organic shapes, artisan handcrafted looks and colored enamels. Heirloom motifs and Art Deco will continue to be inspirational in statement fine jewelry.
Smokey Quartz & Citrine will remain popular colors for fall.
It all began with a Twitter statement.
"I have been looking for a new makeup bag for over a year. This should NOT be this difficult to find," stated Juli, or as the Twitter-verse knows her, @JKCEvents
. I jumped right into that conversation as I'm pretty passionate about my makeup case.
In the mid-90s my mother returned from New York City with two Henri Bende
l makeup cases for my sister and I. We've never used anything else since being introduced to them. They last forever and are fabulous. I then posed the question to other friends and here's what I found were also popular choices among the fun and fashionable of Seattle.
(Left) Price: $60.00
Price: Free with Purchase
Price: $6.99 and up.
Note: Be on the lookout as department stores will often include these as gifts with purchase.
Price: $45 and up.
Price: $22.00 and up.
JVP: Congratulations on your second collection with Banana Republic! (My favorite store). Tell us about the feedback that inspired another bout of work into the new line?
Thank you! It is quite exciting to launch my second collection with Banana Republic. I had wanted the Banana Republic + Mad Men collection to embody the vintage feel of Mad Men with a modern, luxurious twist, allowing the contemporary customer to find an accessible way to wear the Mad Men look. Based on the positive feedback from the first collection, it seems we have achieved this. The second collection is designed similarly in character but filled with gorgeous spring colors, florals, and prints.JVP: What can we expect in terms of fashion this coming season of Mad Men?
JB: People love to ask this question at the beginning of every season of Mad Men but you know it's always more fun to wait and see.JVP: Can you tell us a little bit about your personal brand and fashion inspiration. When did it become bigger than just being a costume designer and your own, personal brand?
JB: The idea of having my own brand began when I was costume designing Deadwood. I had been approached by a western wear company, Billy Martin's, to design a Deadwood Collection. Since then and with the popularity of the costume design for Mad Men, I've been working on growing my brand through my own website www.JanieBryant.com
, my book The Fashion File, and I've just launched a capsule collection with Maidenform for their 90th Anniversary as well as launching the second Banana Republic + Mad Men Collection last week!!!. I am also spokesperson for Downy Wrinkle Releaser and have developed a fabric care guide. http://www.downywrinklereleaser.com/janiebryant JVP: What’s your favorite item from the new Mad Men for BR collection?
JB: If I had to pick, probably the coral floral print Joan dress. It fits the body perfectly and has a floral print design that is so gorgeous, feminine and flattering.
JVP: Tell us your go-to accessories. Jewelry? Handbag? Shoes?
JB: Go-to accessories are always changing for me, but more often than not, you will see me in a leather jacket or blazer, stacks of gold bangles or a cuff, and always sunglasses. I have drawers full! I also love my high heeled boots and a big work bag. The more I can stuff stuff in there the better.JVP: If you could meet one style icon that is living or passed, who would it be?
JB: It changes from year to year but this year or right now it's Brigette Bardot.Mad Men Season 5 debuts with a special 2-hour premiere. Sun., Mar. 25 at 9/8c
I wanted to share with my readers the seminar presentation I led at yesterday's Seattle International Textile Exposition
. The audience was incredibly engaged while I spoke for 45 minutes or so and for that I am very thankful to all who attended. Also, a big thank you to my parents, my sister & boyfriend for being my cheerleaders. And of course to Steven Matsumoto & Daniel Done
for inviting me to share my tips.
The most highly anticipated Jewish event in the Pacific Northwest has arrived my friends!
And I'm here to tell you why you CANNOT miss out on the opportunity to welcome in this great week of film and fun.
On March 15th, 2012, Seattle Sephardic Spotlight Presenting Sponsors Lela & Harley Franco are featuring the renown film, Mabul (The Flood) at Cinerama
As a Sephardic Jew, I'm incredibly excited to watch this film. It centers around Yoni, as he prepares for his Bar Mitzvah, his autistic older brother Tomer unexpectedly returns home, forcing the entire family to cope with his presence.
Following the film at Cinerama, SJFF's premiere party hosted by Tom Douglas will kick off at Palace Ballroom. This night of dazzling performances, musical rhythms and global tastes, showcases flavor mosaics from North Africa, Turkey, Greee and the Middle East-all in celebration of SJFF's Spotlight on Sephardic Life.
But that doesn't mean you have to be Jewish to attend! You just need to love international film & a GREAT party!
There will be a bellydancer & henna artist to entertain the crowd that munches on great food & drink from Tom Douglas.
So what are you waiting for?
For only $50 a ticket, join me in celebrating the kick off to the festival at Cinerama & Palace Ballroom on March 15th, 2012
. I look forward to seeing you there!
Support the arts & buy your tickets HERE
Thank you to Pamela Lavitt, Barri Rind & the entire SJFF Committee for their hard work in making this festival happen!
The 84th Annual Academy Awards went off with out a hitch - for Billy Crystal, actors and actresses alike, and the staff and security of the Kodak Theater. But for the many stylists, publicists and myself - it was anything but that.
Thankfully, I had my mentor Aimee guiding me along every step of the way since January when award season officially kicked off.
When my boss John Baird told me I'd be heading to Miami for an Oscars look for less segment the same week, I called on television style expert Dawn Del Russo
to be the fabulous talent on NBC (and take the pressure off one of the biggest weeks of my life!).
As she always does, Dawn nailed the NBC Miami segment and propelled Blue Nile
for our entrance into Los Angeles for Oscar weekend where BN dressed our very first actress that also happened to be in the Acadamy Award winning film.
We bid adieu as Dawn headed back to New York and I to Los Angeles to dress Penelope Ann Miller.
Below is a slideshow of my week at the Oscars - 5000 airline miles later (Thanks Alaska Airlines
!). From Miami to Los Angeles to Palm Springs to Hollywood back to Seattle, it was an epic long journey that I'm proud to have taken on behalf of Blue Nile.
Thank you to Dawn Del Russo
, my security guards Kevin & Ernie, my boss John Baird and of course, the fabulous Aimee Carpenter for making the 84th Annual Academy Awards unforgettable.