Tuesday, 16 September 2014

A Cut Above the Rest: Lasercut Maptastic Masterpieces

Every now and then we develop a full blown obsession with some random category of objects. 

These obsessions come on without warning, cause crazy levels of pinning, mad levels of late night trawling of eBay and Etsy, followed by some serious flexing of our credit cards. Previous obsessions we've admitted to on the blog include pineapplesflamingos and neon signs

Our latest obsession? Papercut city maps. 

Yes, even for us, we'll admit we've maybe hit a new high of weirdness

On the off chance that you're also desperate for little laser cut mappery in your life, here's our round-up of the maptastic masterpieces currently topping our lust list...

Famille Summerbelle London Paper Cut Map 


Metropolitan Cityscapes Tokyo Map

Karen M O'Leary Paris Map


And last but not least a whole host of paper cuts snipped out of a maps - pure cartographic incredibleness!




Monday, 15 September 2014

Cute Kicks...

We heart Converse...it's official everyone needs a pair in their life. 

They're easy, comfy, stylish and oh so versatile! One of the few trends that can be worn year after year and with absolutely anything...mix smart with casual and pair with a pleated midi skirt, rough them up with ripped jeans or your fav denim shorts or take comfort to the max and pop them under your wedding dress...ok the last one isn't your every day look but it's pretty popular right now! 

Finally, the reason they've become wardrobe essentials for both men and women everywhere...the more battered they get the better they look! So what's holding you up...get lacing and break those bad boys in!!

Between the 3BM wardrobes you'll uncover red, navy, white, high tops, wedged versions, lows and even a studded pair! I believe we have most bases covered except for one MAJOR one...Missoni Converse of course!! 

Yes, I know, we need them...there are 6 different styles to pick from in both highs and lows and all of them fabulously zig zagged with Missoni's signature print. AND the best news yet...they won't break the bank, priced from £69.99 to £74.99 - we'd be fools not to invest! They're exclusive to Office, so get down there quick smart before you miss out!!

Take a little peak...

Friday, 12 September 2014

This Week The Mice Have Mostly Been...

OMG it's only the....

And we're freaking EXCITED!! In a mere matter of hours you can click 'shut down', exhale, grab a cocktail and bask in the blissful feeling of 48 hours of pure relaxation and FUN!! 

This weekend we're heading home to Daddy Mouse's for a couple of days filled with delicious food, an endless supply of wine (parents never seem to run out?!) and a few peaceful nights sleep in our childhood bedrooms...there seriously is nothing like it!

When we haven't been counting down the days, hours and minutes until the weekend...The Mice Have Mostly Been...

Battling on with our clean eating approach...the getting lean is still to be seen...I'm such a poet! Believe it or not our daily green juices are flowing, gym sessions and morning runs are being squeezed in and our brains are continually whirring coming up with healthy yet tasty dinners! 

It's no easy feat but we seem to be hating the early morning alarms a little less, resisting the slabs of banana loaf in Whole Foods and are teaching our tummies to love a juice breakfast and not rumble from 10am onwards! These days the hardest part is constantly trying to think of new and inventive dinner options...ones we can still look forward to all day but aren't so calorific that they negate all your other good work! 

So I think it's only fair to share those good ones we do find to give you all some inspiration! This one is very easy, open to lots of adaption of whatever is left in the fridge and bursting full of delicious flavour. It's not the most photogenic one for a post but I enjoyed it so much I thought what the hell!! 

Brown Rice Noodle Soup with Spicy Pork and Greens
Below makes 2 large servings - if you're going to eat soup for dinner I believe it should be a large serving!!

You need...

250g pork mince
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes / fresh chili
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon sesame oil
950ml chicken stock
1-2 handfuls of kale, center ribs removed and leaves roughly chopped
4 spring onions, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon fish sauce
Sea saly
Fresh ground pepper
120g noodles (wholemeal if you're being healthy!)

How to...

1. Place the pork, garlic, ginger, crushed chilies and cumin in a bowl. Use your hands to mix the ingredients.

2. Heat the sesame oil in a saucepan over a medium heat, when hot add the pork mixture. Cook for 8-10 minutes until lightly browned, stir gently so not to break up too much.

3. Add the chicken stock, bring it to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer for 10 mins.

4. Add the kale, spring onions, soy sauce and fish sauce, and cook for 6-8 mins until the greens are wilted. Season with salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.

5. Meanwhile cook the noodles...

6. Serve the noodles directly into your bowls and ladle the warm soup over them...ENJOY!!

Flying like billyo over to Selfridges to get our mitts on some much desired cinema tickets! Yup you heard it right...Selfridges have opened the first ever department store cinema and they've only gone and paired up with the fabulous Everyman group! 

We're loving that the opening bill of films have been picked by iconic fashion designers...what could be better after a stressful day in the office than settling down in chic surroundings to Marc Jacob's and Oscar De La Renta's favourite movies?!

As it's not just a pop up, the listing will be updated with a mix of all time favourites, new releases and even a preview screening of the new woody Allen film later this month!

Rumour has it you can also order nibbles and a sneaky tipple...PERFECTION!!!


Chilling to the amazing new album from Banks, Goddess. Now I know we've sung her praises numerous times before, but she really is something pretty special. With her hauntingly beautiful vocals, raw emotion and distinctive edge, she's the perfect mix of cool.

Listen to a couple of our new obsessions...

Right I think it's about time that you...

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Trade-Made for Life...

Last weekend I celebrated my birthday - no divulging my magic number fellow mice!!! To mark the occasion myself, Mini and four other pals headed to Trade-Made on Commercial Street in Shoreditch for a slap up brekkie! We had spied this hidden gem on Emerald Street a while back and had kept it earmarked to taste test and report back to you all. 

Dressed up in my laid back birthday outfit, I trotted off ready to eat for England - why not, calorie's don't count on your birthday...

Passing through Brick Lane as we went, I took a snap of some astronaut, knife, butterfly graffiti / craft work of art - random but beaut...

10 minutes later, with rumbling tummies, we arrived...

First impressions ... surprisingly spacious - from the outside Trade-Made doesn't look much but when you step inside, the space magically expands spilling out onto an pretty little outdoor terrace. A table of weekend papers entices and warehouse inspired lighting hangs from the ceiling...

The contrast between the sparse white walls and wooden panelling works beautifully...

With charming details everywhere drawing you further into the nook...

But onto the star attraction - the food is kind of a big deal! A killer menu which will leave you undecided as to where to lay your hat - yes everything just sounds so darn tasty! The meats come from an artisan supplier in Devon, the eggs are flown in from Italy, the bread from a range of local bakers and the fruit and veg is delivered every morning from New Spitalfields Market. They even have a small smokery in the back yard where they produce their Trade-Made Pastrami and a variety of other deli meats - nice touch! 

I opted for a piggy portion of scrambled eggs (oh-so-yellow-and-yummy yolks) piled on sourdough with a side of smoked salmon and smashed avo, which was a concoction of avocado, feta, mint, chilli and lemon - DELISH...

Post-brekkie we were all smiles and suitably stuffed...

But we couldn't stop there! We pushed ourselves over the edge by indulging in orgasmic chocolate and salted caramel brownies - one word - heavenly...

Trade-Made please accept a BIG thumbs up - we heart you and we'll be back in a flash!

47 Commercial Street
E1 6BD

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

A Wedding Under the Tuscan Sun

After the London Mice filled you in on their French adventures last week, I thought it was probably about time that I got myself into gear and reported back on my European summer hols - ten days eating my way around Tuscany and the Cinque Terre in Italy. AKA heaven!

First up, part I - a long weekend in Radda in Chianti, Tuscany for mountains of pasta, lots of swooning over rolling vine-studded hills and the wedding of two of our very favourite people in Hong Kong - Miles & Emma.  

On the last Friday in June, we hopped aboard an orange-tailed easyJet in London, and a couple of hours later found ourselves staring up at this wonky wonder of the world...

After watching a never ending stream of tourists staging comedy holding up the leaning tower photos, we hopped in our hire car and headed off towards the Tuscan hills and our home for the next couple of nights - Villa Vistarenni.

The 17th Century Villa Vistarenni nestles on the hillside above the village of Radda in Chianti about 40 km South of Florence. From Pisa, we zoomed down the Autostrade refuelling at the side of the road with the chicest and most delicious service station snacks we've ever had - San Pellegrino and a mozzarella and Parma ham stuffed ciabatta - Little Chef eat your heart out. 

When we rounded a windy country lane bend and spied Villa Vistarenni, its dazzling white facade sitting in stark contrast to the emerald fields bordering it, at last we felt like our holiday had started. We pulled up in front of the Villa in a squeal of hire car tyres and an arc of gravel before hauling our cases out of the boot and demanding a couple of travel-exhaustion erasing shots of Limoncello.  We had a sun-dappled room in Chiara, the 16th Century farmhouse set just next to the villa a stone's throw from the swimming pool and a hop skip and a tumble from the centre of all the wedding action.

By the time we arrived, we had just enough time for a flurry of hellos, a quick dip in the pool and a very speedy outfit change before heading up to the village to join the bride and groom for pizza and Prosecco at Ristorante La Loggia.

Although we did try to be on our very best behaviour and save ourselves for the big day on Saturday, that deadly combo of all your favourite people in one room and a river of Prosecco meant that it was midnight far too quickly and we'd all done a gun punch or two too many...

Luckily, as Saturday dawned bight and clear with cornflower blue skies and not a cloud in sight, the boys had a carb-heavy lunch to cure their hangovers while us girls zipped down to Emma's family home for Mimosas and a bounteous spread guaranteed to have even the most jaded of party girls back on their feet quicker than you can say brunch bunch.

Pastries inhaled and fuzzy head busting cocktails downed, it was time to shimmy into our wedding outfits and get ready for the main event. 

We then stumbled arm in arm along the gravel driveway, trying to stay upright on our spindly stilettos while dodging from patch of shade to patch of shade on our way back down to Emma's family house for the ceremony.

After the ceremony, we rehydrated with miniature bottle of Prosecco before heading back up the hill to Villa Vistarenni for canapés and Aperol spritzes. 

But not before stealing a few snaps of the brand new Mr & Mrs Dickinson. 

Emma looked jaw-droppingly beautiful in her Monique L'Hullier dress with vintage diamond necklace and a bouquet of peonies.

Back up at the Villa, the party was in full swing and as if by magic, two trestle tables overlooking the vineyards had appeared decorated with ropes of of olive leaves and roses.

The newlyweds arrived and there was just time for a couple more pre-dinner drinks before it was time to seek out our seats at the dinner table.

As the sun slunk below the horizon we tucked into pea and prawn risotto, heart-shaped ravioli (quite possibly the most delicious things I've ever eaten), melt in your mouth beef and little pots of tiramisu all washed down with copious amounts of Italian wine.

Each course was interspersed with speeches and toasts and everyone agreed it was one of the loveliest weddings they'd ever been to.

Just as we thought the evening couldn't get any better, a burst of silver illuminated the velvety calm of the inky black night and we all gazed up open-mouthed as a stunning firework display lit up the sky.

Dancing, a barrage of shots and a dessert buffet followed but as that's all still a little on the hazy side, we'll cut to the next day as I prised open my eyes to spy Emma's bouquet in the corner of the room sat atop a tangle of discarded Issa. As vague memories drifted back to me of elbowing every other girl on the dance floor out of the way to snatch the bouquet for myself, I decided it was time to drag my Limoncello-soaked self out of bed and go in search of strong coffee. 

We spent the day lazing by the pool, keeping hydrated with bottle after bottle of icy rosé and keeping entertained by retelling stories of high jinx from the night before.

Sun-baked and tipping over into tipsy, we retired to our rooms for afternoon naps before heading out for a final feast together in Radda at the beyond awesome Le Forchette del Chianti where we inhaled bowls of fresh black truffle tagliatelle and pappardelle with wild boar ragu. 

Waistband-bustingly full and incredibly happy after a beyond wonderful weekend, it was time to head off on the second part of our Italian adventure, which is another story, for another day...

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