Villa ArenA Storefront Inspiration

Next month I will be presenting a storefront at Villa ArenA woonmall in Amsterdam, one of the largest interior malls in the Netherlands.

The idea behind the window display at Villa ArenA is that I show the costumer how to combine products from the 50 stores that are based in Villa ArenA. The window display will be there to inspire costumers not to shop at just one store but mixing it up instead.

Last week I went on a scouting hunt and it wasn't easy as there is so much to choose from and I have such little space. But in the end I got there. I'm going for a vintage/bohemian look with pastels and all natural materials like leather and cotton.

Want to keep track of what I'm doing? Check out my Pinterest mood board.

Images by Pinterest and posted in collaboration with Villa ArenA - all views are my own

DIY Pegboard

Today I'm going to share the last DIY I did for Dille & Kamille. It was such a pleasure working for them. I hope you have enjoyed all of my previous "Dille DIYs".

How to get started

First measure the space you need for the pegboard. You can buy perforated hardboard in any hardware store. You'll have to saw the board to fit your space, often they'll do that for you at the hardware store if you ask them nicely. Make sure to finely sand the edges and the top of the pegboard before assembling it to the wall.

How to assemble the pegboard

Press with a pencil through the holes so that dots are left on the wall. The dots mark where you have to drill the holes. Left and right, top and bottom and one in the middle otherwise the pegboard will curl up a bit. Drill holes in the wall. Place tape (2) over the hole where the screw should be. Place small transparent doorstops (available at any hardware store) on the back of the pegboard and a screw with rivet on the front (1) of the pegboard. Screw all the screws and then remove the tape.

Finishing off the board

Sand the pegboard lightly and remove the dust with a cloth. Primer the pegboard well, sand again lightly and then paint the pegboard in any desired colour.

That's it!!

I've used S-hooks for hanging. There are so many fun things for sale at Dille & Kamille to hang on the pegboard. Such as flower pots, baskets for storing rope. But also, ladles, utensils and cute pans.

For instructions in Dutch, go to Dille & Kamille.

I'm not actually using the pegboard in my kitchen as there's no space. I would love it though as I'd be very Julia Child. I've set up a space in my basement studio for this photo and will use the pegboard for my crafting supplies instead. More on that soon.

Shrimp Risotto

Ingredients

  • 1 l chicken stock
  • 1 white onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 260 g risotto rice
  • 20 large shrimp
  • 8 sprigs fresh parsley
  • black pepper and salt to taste
  • fresh Parmesan

Preparation

Prepare a litre of chicken stock from a stock cube. I love to use the stock cubes from Kallo as they are organic and do not contain much salt. Cut the onion finely and crush the garlic. Pour 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan and fry the onion and garlic, about 5 minutes. Pour the risotto rice in the same pan and mix with the onion and garlic, about 1 minute. Now add 750 ml of the chicken stock, place the lid on the pan and leave the risotto on low heat until cooked, about 20 minutes. Remove the lid from the pan, stir the risotto and add the remaining 250 ml chicken stock and the shrimp. Stir again, about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat, put the lid on the pan and let the risotto stand for 5 minutes. Finely chop the parsley and mix it into the risotto with ground black pepper and salt to taste. Grate fresh Parmesan individually per plate.

For 4 people

Keecie

For the past two years I've been trying to find the perfect small over de shoulder bag. I'm extremely picky; the strap is too long, the strap is too short, the leather is too red, there's a button on that bag that shouldn't be there ... and so on. There's no denying that I'm very serious about my accessories shopping.

I was pleasantly surprised when I learned about Keecie. Keecie bags and accessories are really plain and simple on the outside but cheery and happy on the inside. So when I was asked to review some of their products, I said Yes! in a heartbeat.

I've used the Picking Flowers, medium over the shoulder bag last weekend to stroll around an amusement park with. It was the best testing ground ever as I had to carry it in and out several roller-coasters. And I'm smitten, the length of the strap is perfect, the size of the bag is just fine and I felt really save as the strap to close the bag with goes all the way round. And as a bonus, I've got a really beautiful inside to look at each time I opened the bag, and it didn't drop out of a roller-coaster when I hung upside down four times in a row.

My Picks

1. Picking Flowers, medium 2. Tree House 3. Mini Tweet Key

These are the products I choose. I really love the Tree House clutch as I can use it as a small party clutch or as an oversized pencil case for the use in a larger bag. I do really need a larger Keecie bag!! Love it!

Images by and posted in collaboration with Keecie - all views are my own

The Green Room

Remember this post about getting older? Well it's taking it's toll as yet my home office is changing bit by bit too.

We started with lowering the ceiling by adding an extra trim and painting it white. This way the 3.45 m high ceiling doesn't look that high. To create contrast Bo painted the walls in a beautiful soft green. As my office window is overlooking dense trees on the next door plot, the room lights up green anyway in summer. In winter it's a dull grey room. Now it will be green all year round.

The wall with the pink wallpaper and shelves looks really odd right now but things will change as soon as I made my mind up for patio doors out to the garden yay or nay! There will be either doors with a bookcase build around it or there will be a build-in bookcase covering the whole wall. I need time to make my mind up.

I've replaced the pink pendant for a small white Leitmotiv Ribble pendant I got from Bol.com so now all the attention goes to the ceiling instead.

I've placed a Zuiver Buckle Head floor lamp in the corner next to my desk for extra light. I also got that one from Bol.com. I also got the jug that holds peonies FROM MY OWN GARDEN! from Bol.com. I love the efficiency of shopping in one place without driving, parking and traffic-jams.

I've made a pastel style guide with my favourite products over on Bol.com

Posted in collaboration with Bol.com - all views are my own

Guilt-Free Ice Cream

Both my parents are and were suffering from type 2 diabetes. With me passing 40 this year (oh please shut up, it's crazy) I'm getting a wee bit scared. I'm overweight and I don't exercise enough. I have the good fortune that I do have a dislike for junk food as I love healthy food. I don't smoke, I don't drink alcohol and I've always preferred to drink water. But I do need to get my sugars and exercises under control.

I've started last week to do a 15 minutes exercise routine in the morning, 50 times up and down the stairs in the afternoon and another 15 minutes exercise routine before I go to bed. Every other day I go for a walk and listen to audio books on my iPhone. So far so good.

I love anything containing E supplements and for a month now I've been cutting them completely out of my life. I'm snacking on nakd bars and natural sugar ice cream pops I make myself. Another, so far so good.

The Recipe for the Chocolate Ice Creams

Mix 125 ml coconut milk with 2 tablespoons of raw cocoa-powder, 1 tablespoon maple-syrup and a pinch of salt in a blender and freeze overnight.

The Recipe for the Strawberry Ice Creams

Mix 125 ml coconut milk with 1 tablespoon maple-syrup and 20 strawberries (chopped in small pieces) with a mixer and freeze overnight.

Each batch makes approximate 4 pops.

I'll keep you posted on my path to cutting refined sugars from my life and how I get my kicks from exercising without pulling my hair out and crying like a little baby. Oh the things I would give to be a sumo-wrestler living on pasta in Italy ... sigh.