Best of Basics | MNZ White Mules


Last week I rounded up the best of White Mules to wear this season. After all of my research, I finally gave in and bought the Maryam Nassir Zadeh White Mules. I wore them last weekend with the DE SMET Button Up Convertible Dress in Starch. They worked well for a cocktail party but I am equally excited to wear them with my favorite uniform: jeans and a t-shirt. With such a neutral wardrobe, white mules brighten up any look.


Muji Stainless Steel Flatware


I’ve always been an advocate for well designed home goods and even more of an advocate for home goods that are reasonably priced. Muji does this best. They are constantly rolling out products that are thoughtfully designed and made to last.

Muji-Stainless-Steel-Flatware-2 desmitten

Last week, I stopped in at Muji for a few travel supplies and I left with a set of stainless steel flatware. We’ve been looking for flatware for over two years now. Our criteria, as always, was simple:
-minimal, sleek design
-not too large


Before fully committing to a forever flatware set, I like to buy 1 set (salad fork, dinner fork, butter knife, teaspoon, tablespoon) and use it for a few weeks. This is when we assess everything: Does it fit nicely in your hand? Does it wash well? Does it function for everyday needs? At some point, usually within the first few uses, I’ll know if it’s right or not. Many flatware sets have fallen short. Until now. The Muji stainless steel flatware meets all of our criteria and they offer many different sizes. I’m always in need of a tiny fork to pull olives out of a jar or an extra long spoon to reach the bottom of a tall glass.

I’ve always found Kenya Hara’s design philosophy inspiring, so It’s no surprise we found our everyday flatware at Muji. It was well worth the wait.

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Postcard From Manitoga

A perfect day trip to escape New York City: Manitoga, the 75-acre eco-sensitive Modernist home and studio of American industrial designer Russel Wright. Located 50 miles north of New York City, it was an abandoned quarry that Wright spent his entire life designing into an extensive woodland.
After the death of his wife, Mary Small Einstein (who was the business mind behind Wright) he created an oasis for him to raise their only daughter. By moving large boulders on his property, Wright was able to reroute a natural spring to fill the quarry to create a swimming hole in front of the house. He spent years curating the grounds and composing what he called “outdoor rooms” where he would host parties. Throughout his design process at Manitoga, he wanted to hide the hand of man. So even though he spent countless years designing the 75-acre woodland estate, he wanted it to feel naturally formed.
Wright Is best known for his American modern dinnerware which he sold over 250,000 pieces of during his lifetime. His design philosophy was about simple living, which him and his wife wrote about in their 1950 book Guide to Easier Living. The book described how to reduce housework and increase leisure time through efficient design and management. I resonate with his design philosophy of living simply, designing to appeal to all five senses and I will continue to draw inspiration from my visit to Manitoga.

Introducing the DE SMET Button Up Convertible Dress

button-up-convertible-dress-poppyseed-black-dress-wear-three-ways-de-smet-made-in-new-york-18At DE SMET, we focus on designing clothes that work hard for our customers. This month’s Button Up Convertible Dress offers multiple styling options. Wear it as a swing dress with bell sleeves, or as a more streamlined silhouette with buttons fastened to the front or back. Shop this style and view more styling possibilities here.button-up-convertible-dress-de-smet-made-in-new-york-2



Minestrone Soup Recipe


As the trees begin to change color and the weather starts to cool down, we look for constants that feel familiar. In our house, making minestrone soup is a way we welcome in the new, cooler season each year. Since yesterday was the first day that felt like Fall, I made my favorite minestrone soup recipe with garlic croutons. This recipe makes enough food for a few meals, so it is well worth it. It is also a great way to use the abundance of summer vegetables left in the garden.

This meal takes around 30 minutes to make, but the flavors are hearty and deep as if you let it simmer for hours. Continue reading