A Travel & Lifestyle Blog

Inspiration: Greek designers

I caught myself reminiscing about my trips to Christos Costarellos's atelier in Athens last year, for my wedding dress fittings;

then I came to think about some of the new Greek designers that caught my eye during my trips.

Zeus+Dione is all about using traditional weaving methods to create light fabrics and clothes with a nod to ancient Greek mythology. My absolute favourite is the straw hat; it takes me back to holidaying in Spetses last year. 

Christina Fragista Sandals:
Karlonisi White & Gold Leather Sandal // Athos Brown Gladiator Sandal // Stavronisi with Turquoise & Silky Beige Italian Leather and Gold-plated Heart with Semi-precious stone // Revithoussa Gladiator Sandal Beige
Christina Fragista's sandals are hand cut and hand stitched,  also using traditional techniques but with the added sparkle of semi-precious stones. Great from morning to night! It's hard to pick a favourite but for now it will have to be the White & Gold Leather sandals; I can picture wearing them with a long white skirt, simple tank top  and a chunky gold necklace.

And last but not least, I have come to respect Christos Costarellos's work: elegant, flowing designs and a very helpful, hands on team to look after you.
What else does a girl want? x

Lavender Cupcakes

I got the nicest gift the other day: a set of blank cards from The Hummingbird Bakery in London. 
It's quite a handy gift, not only you have a stash of cute looking cards for birthdays and "thank you" notes but what's best, they have printed yummy cupcake recipes on the back of each card! So no more last minute rushing to the petrol station for dubious-looking birthday cards for a while! 
Here is one of the cupcake recipes I put into action, to thank a couple of friends for letting us stay over at their place. 

Lavender Cupcakes by The Hummingbird Bakery 

120gr plain Flour (1 cup)
120ml whole Milk (half a cup)
140gr caster Sugar (3/4 of a cup)
11/2 teaspoons Baking Power
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 Egg
3 tablespoons of dried Lavender Flowers 

Lavender Icing
5 spoonfuls of soften butter
2 spoonfuls of lavender infused milk
250gr Icing Sugar (2 cups) 
Purple food colouring 

Start a couple of hours in advance by soaking the lavender flowers in the milk you are going to use for the batter. Truth be told, I didn't look at the recipe beforehand so I only soaked the flowers in the milk for fifteen minutes. I resorted to warming the milk up a little - make sure it doesn't boil - in order for the lavender fragrance to infuse the milk faster. It worked perfectly fine.

Lay a 12-cupcake tray with paper cases and turn the oven on at 170C to warm up. Mix the flower, butter and baking powder together until well combined. Strain the infused milk and slowly add it to the flour mixture. Keep two-three spoonfuls of infused milk aside, for the icing. Finally add an egg and whisk well together, but don't overwork it. You need some air bubbles to lift the batter to fluffy little lavender sponges. Fill the paper cases half way up with the batter, it does double in size once cooked. Bake for 20-25 minutes at 170C. Once golden, take out of the oven and let the cupcakes cool down.

For the icing, whisk together the butter, icing sugar and milk until you have a smooth paste and no lumps of butter or sugar. Add food colouring, if you wish but go slowly, you only need a few drops! Smother your cupcakes with this light purple, sweet & fragrant icing and top with a few dried lavender flowers, if you feel like it! 

I spy with my...London Eye

I was looking through some pictures and I realised that over the years I have been to the London Eye numerous times...one for Mother's Day, one for a birthday "flight" along with a river cruise down the Thames and a couple of times just taking friends visiting London. I remembered how much fun it is to be a tourist in your own city, slow down and appreciate the surroundings! Day to night, summer to winter these pictures are a time capsule of the ever changing London skyline. Can you spot what's missing in the City landscapes? I thought I'd share the best views with you, especially for those of you who live far away and crave a little trip down good old London!

© Life Love London

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