Where to Remodel a Fur Coat

In the late 80’s, when I was a young, working gal in Chicago, I purchased a fur (with the help of my father) to keep me warm from the cold of the windy city.  It did its job for a few years, but sadly, instead of keeping me warm, it has been hanging, neglected, in a closet for over twenty years.

For a long time I have wanted to remodel my floor-length, male mink.  The wide sleeves made it look huge, the style is outdated, and I just don’t have a need for it.  I longed to convert the big, heavy coat into a useful, updated style that I could wear casual, as well as, dressy

The dated style with massive sleeves and bracelet cuffs.

At a holiday event, I picked up the business card of Peter Duffy Furs.  I’ve held on to it hoping I would make the fur project a reality.  I did some research pricing out various places and getting input on design and spoke to Marge Duffy at Peter Duffy Furs who intrigued me with the fairness of their cost to remodel.  We set up a consultation to check the condition of the fur (thankfully mine was still in good condition) and discuss the style I was hoping for.  I left the coat and returned less than 2 weeks later to a remodeled fur jacket!   We made minor tweaks, I selected a monogram for the lining and learned that there was enough fur remaining to make a fur stole!!  One week later I returned to pick up my new fur jacket and stole!

Remade into to a 25″ length jacket.

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Raised the arm holes and opened the cuff to make the jacket more current and appear less bulky.

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Made a stylish stole with the left over fur!

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Do you have a fur that you are not wearing?  If so, thing about turning it into something new.

Peter Duffy Furs is located in New York City at 231 W. 29th Street (bet. 7th and 8th Ave).

Phone: 212-695-6161

Ask for Marge and tell her Cynthia sent you…

 

Thanks for stopping by…Cynthia

Thanksgiving Table

Whether rustic, elegant, traditional, modern, colorful, current, glam, monochromatic, natural, dramatic, festive or bright, there are countless ways to dress a Thanksgiving Table.  Like one’s personal style, table dressing should be a reflection of you.  If you are hosting Thanksgiving and haven’t quite decided on table decor or, haven’t thought about it at all, perhaps one of the following settings will set your heart a flutter, get your creative juices flowing and inspire you to get Thanksgiving Table dressing!

White candles with mini pumpkins and gourds

modern hurricanes with acorns

mixed candle with greens, gourds and fruit

glam in gold

Natural simplicity

Modern mix of white and natural

Rustic chic

Elegant and fruity

Colorful and ornate

Farmhouse chic

 

Will your Thanksgiving Table decor reflect your personal style?

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy your Friends and Family this Thanksgiving…Cynthia

Images: Various Pinterest

Rainy Day Chicken Stew

If I am not checking out stores on a rainy day I enjoy cooking – especially a dish like my Rainy Day Chicken Stew.  Taking the time to cut up the vegetables, saute the onions and garlic, brown the chicken and then slowly cook everything together to get great flavor is a labor I love and is a family favorite!

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YOU WILL NEED: (serves 6-8)

2-3 lbs of skinless, boneless chicken thighs (cut into 1″ pieces)

1 box of (32 fl oz.) organic chicken stock (or home-made stock)

1 Cup of Chardonnay (or white wine of your choice)

Olive oil

1 box (26 oz.) San Marzano Fire Roasted Crushed Tomatoes

1 medium yellow onion (peeled and diced)

3 cloves of garlic (peeled and diced)

1 russet potato (peeled and cut into 1″ pieces)

1 sweet potato (peeled and cut into 1″ pieces)

1 turnip (peeled and cut into 1″ pieces)

2 yellow bell peppers (cleaned, seeded and cut into 1 ” pieces)

3 carrots (peeled and cut into 1″ pieces)

Fresh sage and thyme sprigs (tie-together with cooking twine)

salt and pepper

Dutch oven or large pot

STEPS:

Add about 2 TBSP of olive oil to bottom of pot.  Over medium heat slowly saute garlic and onion until translucent. Remove onions and garlic and set aside.  Add chicken pieces to pot, season with salt and pepper and saute until lightly browned (about 8 minutes).  Remove chicken and set aside.  Add wine and deglaze the pot getting up any brown bits.

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After deglazing add cooked chicken, onions and garlic back into the pot. Add in the crushed tomatoes and stir.  Add all of the vegetables and pour in all of the chicken stock.  Turn the heat to high and bring quickly to a boil.

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Once boiled, stir , lower heat, add sage and thyme, and simmer for 1- 1 1/2 hours, with pot partially covered.

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The completed Rainy Day Chicken Stew should have reduced slightly, thickened a bit and root vegetables should be tender.

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Season to taste and Rainy Day Chicken Stew is ready to serve!

IMG_2655Serve and enjoy with a warmed, crispy baguette (to dunk in the delicious stew sauce) and a glass of your favorite wine or beer (in front of the fireplace even better).  If you like it spicy add your favorite hot sauce to taste.  Bon Appetit!

Do you prefer to shop or cook on rainy days?

Thanks for stopping by…Cynthia

 

 

Skillet Style Chocolate Chip Cookies

Normally, I am captured by fashion, beauty and accessory photos but I recently came across this photo of Skillet Style Chocolate Chip Cookies while looking through a blog I enjoy.  With Fall “sweater weather” I am thinking of cozy gatherings, fireside foods and cold-weather treats – this chocolate chip cookie seems to fit that bill!!

Anthroplogie recipe

Ashley’s most delicious looking Salted Skillet Chocolate Chip Cookie is from Anthropologie’s Blog which always has great visuals, fun ideas and inspiration.  You can visit the blog by clicking here. I have not made this recipe but it really looks too good not to share — and definitely do share if you make it!

Ashley’s Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies, Skillet Style

WHAT YOU’LL NEED…
½ cup (1 stick) butter
2 tablespoons white sugar
2 tablespoons turbinado sugar
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar, packed
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ¾ cup all purpose flour
¾ teaspoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
6 ounces chopped chocolate or chips (Use the best quality chocolate your budget will allow. With a serrated knife, cut chocolate into roughly ½ inch chunks)
½ teaspoon flaky sea salt

12″ cast iron skillet

HOW TO MAKE IT…
Preheat oven to 400°F. Cream the butter and sugars on medium-high speed until light, 5 minutes. Scrape down the side of the bowl a couple times in this process. Continue mixing while adding the egg. Add the vanilla. Scrape down the bowl with a spatula. Combine the flour, baking soda and kosher salt in another bowl. Whisk to combine. With the machine on low, slowly add the flour mixture. Mix until just combined, taking care not to over mix. With a spatula, fold in the chocolate.
Dump the dough into a 12″ cast iron skillet and pat down to flatten into an even layer. Then sprinkle the flake salt on top. Bake for 12 minutes. Edges will be golden while the center is still soft and gooey.
For regular cookies, scoop onto a lined cookie sheet then sprinkle each cookie with a bit of the flake salt. Bake in a preheated 360°F oven for 10-12 minutes, depending on size. Makes 18-24 cookies.

And, don’t forget spoons and scoops of ice cream dropped on the just baked cookie!!

Thanks for stopping by and enjoy…Cynthia

 

 

 

Carola Muis – photographer

Yesterday (October 23, 2015), a very complimentary article about me, my personal styling business and my fashion and beauty blog came out in the Life & Style section of “The Rye Record” (Rye, NY).  Some of the fabulous photos that were taken of me this summer to launch my blog were included.  My friend and talented photographer, Carola Muis deserves credit for all of the photos.  She is a fabulous, patient and creative photograher who is a pleasure to work with!

Here are some of her photos published in The Rye Record article, “Cynthia Hudson Takes Her Style Seriously, and Now Virtually”…

Carola Muis

Carola Muis

Photo by carola@carolamuis.com www.cynthiahudsonstyle.com/blog

Photo by carola@carolamuis.com
www.cynthiahudsonstyle.com/blog

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Here are a few more (not in article)…

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Thank you Carola for making me look good – as only a talented photographer could do!!

If you are interested in contacting Carola she can be reached at carolamuis.com

Halloween Makeup

Whether cute, scary, bewitching or ugly, effective halloween makeup can make or break the costume.  The creativity and talent of makeup artists when it comes to achieving a Halloween “look” is awesome!!   Be inspired by some fabulous Halloween faces and effects I found…perhaps one will inspire you this Halloween!!  Have a happy and safe one!

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What are you being for Halloween?  I’m still unsure but I think it will have to include some great Halloween makeup!

Thanks for stopping by…Cynthia

All images:  Pinterest

 

Autumn Outdoor Inspiration

Terrain in Westport, CT is one of the great inspirational garden shops in the Westchester, NY/Fairfield, CT area.  They provide a fashionable feast for the eyes with amazing creative and colorful vignettes at every turn. They have outdoor offerings like landscape services, plantings, planters, garden accessories, garden tools, architectural items and outdoor furniture, as well as, indoor items like plants, specialty food items, unique serving pieces, interesting tabletop, scented candles galore, distinctive planters, books, exquisite gift items, etc.  They also have a delightful Garden Cafe with indoor and outdoor seating (seasonal).  The food is delicious and the breads are fresh baked all day long.

My girlfriend and I made our seasonal visit recently for Autumn Outdoor Inspiration.  I was looking specifically for ideas for the two urns on my front steps. After much contemplation I chose Millet as my “statement piece”. It is a grass-like plant with lime colored foliage and brown fluffy puffs. Wikipedia says, “Millets are a group of highly variable small-seeded grasses, widely grown around the world as cereal crops or grains for fodder and human food.”  (I was informed at Terrain that Millet will seed toward the end of Autumn and I should harvest those seed, store them in my garage and plant in the Spring – I may give it a go!)  Assorted small and miniature pumpkins and ghourds serve as my arrangements “accessories”.  Here is the result…

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The photos that follow are the Autumn Outdoor Inspiration we enjoyed.  Amazing how many ornamental squash varieties exist, size and colors of pumpkins (I only knew orange pumpkins growing up).  I am always in awe of the originality and creativity of the displays and arrangements!  Hope you are inspired in some way too…

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The Millet I chose (below)

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More Millet (below)

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Thought this plant was beautiful!  Celosia Intez (below) with pansies.

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Indoor decorative pumpkins.

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Have you found your Autumn Outdoor Inspiration?

Thanks for stopping by…Cynthia

NORDSTROM - Shop Cozy Sweaters for Fall.

 

 

Modern Mix

I was very fortunate to be a guest at the exquisite book signing event for the new inspirational, beautiful and useful design book Modern Mix by Eddie Ross with Jaithan Kochar.  The event was organized and hosted by Elizabeth of the Entertaining and Lifestyle Blog, Pretty Pink Tulips at The Apawamis Club in Rye, NY.  J.McLaughlin contributed to the stunning decor by providing the colorful reusable bags, gift certificates packaged beautifully and a local Rye home design store, Nest Inspired Home provided a generous raffle prize.  Outdoors Contained, a local Rye business, provided unique centerpiece arrangements and talented Rye photographer Stefan Radtke chronicled the event.

It was a fabulous “Modern Mix” of fashion as well!  I was pleased and proud to see the attendees in chic, classic and current ensembles with plenty of on trend touches like lace, fur, tassels, fringe, suede and so on.  Enjoy the fashion show that follows…

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Elizabeth of Pretty Pink Tulips with Jaithan (l) and Eddie (r).                            Photo by:  Stefan Radtke

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Elizabeth setting up event looking chic and beautiful in classic black and white with a fabulous tassle necklace.                                                                                               Photo by: Stefan Radtke

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Elegant, chic and on trend in a MSGM dress with lace and leather detail.      Photo by: Stefan Radtke

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Rocking the 70s trend in a great suede fringe skirt.                                                  Photo by: Stefan Radtke

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Updating a classic boucle dress with a trendy fur accessory.                        Photo by: Stefan Radtke

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Fur accessory with a classic winter white dress and a beautiful jewel tone dress with embellished fabric.

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Missoni skirt with a classic knee-high boot and exotic animal print with chic bootie.

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Celine Micro Luggage handbag and Hermes enamel printed bracelet.       Photo by: Stefan Radtke

 

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Table decor was colorful and thoughtful!

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Modern Mix for each attendee.                                                    Photo by: Stefan Radtke

 

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Table centerpieces were each unique and containers were sourced at a local vintage gift shop.

The lunch event was the perfect “Modern Mix” of style, inspiration, elegance, creativity, fashion, fun and friends!!

Thank you Elizabeth and thanks for stopping by…Cynthia

 

 

Massage

Michelle Capp logo

I have been depriving myself for too long and had no idea how badly I needed to be pampered, relax and take some time for myself!  I have always regarded massage so special that I would save it to look forward to on vacations and weekends away.  However, that philosphy has changed now that I’ve experienced a massage by Michele Cappellano of Health Through Massage in Rye, NY.  Michele and her therapists combine the latest in techniques and methodologies to build a customized approach to your wellness and are dedicated to “improving the quality of life for you and your family through ‘Relief Therapy'”.  And, what a relief it was!  Through the combination of soft, soothing music and sounds of nature, a super comfortable bed with cushion supports, deep tissue massage and deep breathing with aromatherapy, my hope for relaxation and muscle tension relief was achieved!!  Michele used aromatherapy throughout the massage…Lemon eucalyptus (awakening), tangerine and clary sage (balancing) – truly heavenly!  The full body massage performed with the perfect amount of intense pressure relieved my neck and shoulder tension and loosened my leg muscles.  Of course, the head and foot massage were incredible too.

Michele Cappellano – founder

Michelle Cappellano

The website www.healththrumassage.com provides all of the information about her award winning services.  I need to remember to make massage an important part of my life.  In addition to it being relaxing and tension relieving it improves joint mobility, increases nutritional distribution and boosts immunity, improves posture and coordination, promotes restful sleep, reduces recovery time after exercise, enhances oxygen intake, alleviates anxiety and more.  And, I sincerely believe taking the time to do good for yourself does good for everyone in your life!

Michele kindly agreed to extend my readers the price of $110 (usually $125) for an hour massage.  Just mention that you read about Health through Massage on this blog.

Thanks for stopping by and treat yourself… Cynthia

Pasta for Dinner

With kids heading back to school next week and the return of hectic schedules I look to easy meals to feed my crew.  Pasta for dinner is a family weeknight meal that makes eating together easier to achieve!  As often as possible we try to eat dinner, sitting around our table, together.  As a mom of 4 growing kids  (teens and pre-teens), I am cooking more than ever – more often and larger amounts – and am busier than ever.   So, recipes need to deliver…appeal to everyone, be easy and quick to make, be nutritious, and of course, be delicious!

I’ve cut back on the amount of pasta I eat, however, I do LOVE it! (Almost as much as shoes!)  So, when I make it it has to be worth it!  I tend to wing it when I cook, so the recipe that follows is my version of:

Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe and Sweet Italian Sausage: (Makes 6 servings)

1 lb Orecchiette pasta

1 lb Sweet Italian Sausage (remove from casing)

2 bunches broccoli rabe (washed and cut into 1″ pieces)

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4-5 garlic cloves, chopped

fresh Italian parsley, chopped

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1.Bring large pot of water to a boil and salt generously.  Once boiling, add pasta and cook until al dente.  When you drain be sure to reserve some of the salted cooking water to add to pasta at end.

2. Put about 1″ of water at bottom of a large saute pan and place cleaned and chopped broccoli rabe. Cover and cook/steam on medium heat until very tender.

3. In another large saute pan, place sausage removed from casing.  Break it up into small pieces and cook until fat renders and is fully cooked.  Once cooked, remove sausage and set aside.  If there is a lot of fat from sausage pore excess out but do not completely clean pan.

4. In same skillet as sausage was cooked add about 3 TBSP of olive oil to remaining fat and slowly saute the garlic until soft (do not burn).  Once softened, add the cooked sausage back to pan.

5. Once broccoli rabe is tender, drain to remove most of the water. (I use a colander) Once drained put broccoli rabe into pan with sausage and mix together.

6. Add cooked pasta to sausage and broccoli rabe mixture.  Mix together adding a small amount of the reserved cooking water. (I use about 3 large ladles or to desired consistency).  Give a good stir to deglaze bottom of pan.  I add a bit more olive oil as well and I taste.  If needed, I will add some kosher salt.  Add the fresh parsley and mix together.

Suggest serving with fresh Pecorino-Romana cheese (prefer Locatelli brand) and crushed red pepper flakes on side (for those that like some spice and cheese),  a garden salad and sliced, fresh french baquette.
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Fresh parsley ready to join the party!

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Sweet Italian Sausage and Broccoli Rabe awaiting the pasta.

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Sliced fresh bread as centerpiece.

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The finished product plated with garden salad a few slices of bread.

The whole family enjoys Orrechiette with Broccoli Rabe and Sweet Italian Sausage….Bon Appetite!!

What is your favorite pasta dish?  Thanks for stopping by….Cynthia