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The Perfect P Blog

Meet the Stylemakers -- Janel Alexander

Meet the Stylemakers -- Janel Alexander

Welcome to our Meet the Stylemakers blog series where we will introduce you to the designers, creators & rainmakers in our industry.  You will learn how they work, what makes them tick and where they find inspiration.  I hope you enjoy, feedback is welcome!  Have a perfect day! 
lisa lori 

 

Meet Janel Alexander -- Fashion Stylist, BuildbyJanel

-- Greenwich, CT -- 

 BUILDbyjanel is a personal fashion stylist working with clients

to organize, create and shop.

On any given day in Greenwich you can see fashion stylist Janel on the hunt for great fashion pieces, stylish and on trend, she exudes coolness. Janel has a particular eye for matching great statement pieces with her clients personal tastes.  She reviews a client's entire wardrobe and works to help the client edit & select the most important pieces to complement with new ones. 

With 15+ years in the industry specializing in fit with top retailers and designers, Janel works with both men and women who are looking for distinctive looks for both their personal and professional lives.  Based in Greenwich CT, Janel works with clients in the tri state area and virtually beyond.

"I believe there is a more modern way to manage a wardrobe. Especially in a world of too much, less truly is more and it is a cathartic experience to free oneself of excess and focus in on simply what works. I am a personal stylist who specializes in managing a closet from the inside out and seamlessly integrating your wardrobe with your life.  City life to suburbs, age, wisdom and humor taught me how to work with others on simply what I love doing!" - Janel

Where do you find your inspiration?

"Harder in the time of Covid-but i love myself some good old fashioned people watching-give me a bench a coffee and some music and i could be entertained for hours. I get this through NYC, travel, my clients, interior spaces. "
How can clients get started with you -- is there a minimum amount or opening fee? Should client plan for hourly or monthly payment plans?

"I charge hourly to allow clients to use me where I can be most effective. I like to start with a good closet edit. I can be so much more effective if I know what your lifestyle is and how you actually wear your clothing, what mistakes you have made and why (we’ve all been there and it usually reveals the most info) and just generally what you have that you need so we can work with it. Most importantly i take it away so you can thank it and get rid of it to better see between the weeds. Closets often truly are mini windows to our past and need to refectory more our present and future selves."
What type of work can client's book with you: Closet clean out, personal shopping, styling, etc.
"Closet edit, shopping brought to you to try in the comfort of your home, look books and  packing (when we get there again!) and we digitize your closet.
We help clients edit their closets, donate, upcycle or sell unwanted items and begin to BUILD anew."

 

How did you get your start as a stylist?  

I spent 15+ years in the fashion industry with top retailers and designers (such as J Crew, Calvin Klein, Banana Republic). I specialized in fit and pattern making which gave me a deeper understanding of how clothing is meant to fit on different body types and styles. City life to suburbs, age, wisdom and humor taught me how to work with others on simply what I love doing!!

 

Janel's Top Three Must Haves:

  • A great coat-A good investment piece-but once you find the right one-you can throw it over even a pair of PJ’s and no one will be the wiser!!
  • A great pair of boots or shoes-heels are great, but a go to pair of everyday boots or shoes can make or break an otherwise average look. 
  • Something that makes me feel uniquely me-my favorite (old) Celine sunglasses, a (non skinny) denim pant or a perfectly askew hemline. It’s about putting less effort into looking effortlessly put together!


What is the best way for clients to work with you and contact you?

My website and contact me page www.buildbyjanel.com. I try to get back you you within 24hrs to schedule a quick call so we can discuss how I can best be of help to you.What to learn more, visit Janel online! Website: www.buildbyjanel.comInstagram: @bulidbyjanel 

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Perfect News -- Meet the Stylemakers -- Veronique Gabai Launches at The Perfect Provenance

Perfect News -- Meet the Stylemakers -- Veronique Gabai Launches at The Perfect Provenance

Verognique Gabai Launches at The Perfect Provenance


Inspired by the South of France
 Veronique Gabai is a gorgeous new beauty line including: fine fragrance, lotion, bronzer and home fragrance that we are thrilled to introduce to our clients who love fragrance.  Veronique grew up in the South of France, has a home in Westport & New York City, and has been creating some of the world's best selling fragrances throughout her career in the beauty business.   We met many years ago working together and I am so happy to unveil this beautiful new collection.  It will transport you to the divine scents of the South of France in an instant.

 

About Veronique Gabai

 Veronique Gabai has a passionate attachment to the culture, the refinement, the sense of aesthetics and the pure beauty of France. Her creations are all inspired by the gorgeous places, the precious flowers and plants growing right there in the magical backyards of her childhood. Her brand is like a home, a home in the Côte d'Azur, that echoes the blue hues of the sky and the sea, the shimmer of the sun, the clarity of the light…
Veronique Gabai uses natural ingredients with the best quality one can find. Quality is never compromised so you can enjoy the most beautiful sensations nature can give with:
• Ethically sourced ingredients with respect to their communities and workers around the world.
•  98% of the perfume sourcing can be traced.
• Green chemistry is used and the perfume formulation is green between 75% and 89%. This is quite an achievement in the industry!
• The perfume oils are biodegradable up to 90%.

 

To shop this collection on our website click here or visit us in store. Learn more about the collection - View Video

- The Goldie Highlighter $70

- Moisturizing Body Cream $95

- Eau Du Jour & Eau Du Nuit Candle Set $150

- Mimosa in the Air 85ml Fine Fragrance $260

- Jasmine de Minuit 85ml Fine Fragrance $260

- Eau De La Nuit 85ml Fine Fragrance $260

- Eau Du Jour 85ml Fine Fragrance $260

- Sur la Plage 85ml Fine Fragrance $260

- Nour De Mai 85ml FIne Fragrance $260

For more information, please contact us at 203-900-1131.  Have a great day!

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Cocktails with Alisyn Camerota & Chef Silvia Baldini December 12

Cocktails with Alisyn Camerota & Chef Silvia Baldini December 12

Join us tonight at 5 PM EST for a fun Instagram & Facebook live @alisyncamerota and Chef Silvia Baldini for a fun night of cocktails, conversation and great recipes!!  Chef Silvia developed our special line of Italian olive oils & vinegars, is a Chopped champion and makes the most incredible Italian dishes!!
Join in the fun by getting all the ingredients below!!  See you tonight! Use our delicious olive oils & vinegars for an extra special taste! Click here for our varietals .  Mangia Bene!
The Kir Royale.
By Chef Silvia Baldini 
It turns any glass of bubbly into a special occasion.

Ingredients
• 1/2 ounce crème de cassis or any raspberry Liquor
• dry Champagne or other sparkling wine, to top
• Suggested Garnish: lemon twist, crushed freeze dried raspberries, crushed candy canes, 
Tonno and Cannellini Beans Salad
By Chef Silvia Baldini
This has always been one of my favorite Italian antipasto. 
Tonno and Cannellini beans salad. It’s Tuscany on a plate.

It makes 12 chicchetti (appetizers) or 4 full size appetizers
15 minutes
Ingredients:
• ½ red onion (finely chopped)
• 4  tablespoons fresh lemon juice
• 2 x 14 ounces cans borlotti beans
• 2 x 8 ounces can of tuna in olive oil
• 3 tablespoons Perfect Provenance extra virgin olive oil
• salt (to taste)
• black pepper (to taste)
• 2  tablespoons chopped fresh flatleaf parsley
•crostini or sliced baguette
Method:
• Put the chopped onion into a bowl with the lemon juice and let it steep while you get on with the salad.
• Drain the beans and rinse to get rid of any gloop, then place in a bowl.
• Drain the tuna and flake it into the beans.
• Add the olive oil and some salt to the onion and lemon juice mixture, whisking to make a dressing, then pour it over the tuna and beans and transfer to a serving dish.
• Fork the tuna and bean salad through, seasoning with salt and ground pepper, and scatter the parsley over.
Serve on crostini, sliced fresh baguette drizzled with good olive oil or in small individual ramekins

Perfect Holiday App -- Citrus Marinated Olives
By Silvia Baldini
2 cups, serving 12
5 minutes, plus at least 2 hours' refrigeration
It is best to use olives that have not been pitted and such a favorite at aperitivo time.

Ingredients:
• ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
• 2 tablespoons vinegar
• 5 bay leaves
• 2 large garlic cloves, peeled, green shoots removed, thinly sliced
•  Strips of rind from 1 lemon and 1 orange
• 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, coarsely chopped
• 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
• ½ teaspoon fennel seeds
• 2 cups imported olives (black, green or a mix) (about 3/4 pound)
Method:
• Combine the olive oil, vinegar, bay leaves and garlic in a small saucepan and heat just until warm over low heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon rind, thyme, rosemary and fennel seeds.
• Place the olives in a wide mouthed jar and pour in the olive oil mixture. Shake the jar to coat the olives. Refrigerate for two hours or for up to two weeks. Shake the jar a few times a day to redistribute the seasonings.
Tip
• Advance preparation: These will keep for about two weeks in the refrigerator.
You can order our olive oils & vinegars online or visit us at either of our stores in Greenwich, CT or Tiburon, California.  Call us at 203-900-1131 for question! 
Cheers -- lisa lori 

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Fall Trends -- Fashion in the Time of a Pademic

Fall Trends -- Fashion in the Time of a Pademic

Fall 2020 -- who knew!  When we bought our Fall Fashion collections we could have never imagined we would be buying clothing to sell to clients living through a pandemic.  How do you dress during a time like this?  Every day in either of our stores, clients come in and look at our clothes and often wonder out loud, where am I going, do I really need any clothes?  And the answer I most often give may certainly surprise you.  I tell people " Of course not, nobody really needs anything." 

Why would I say this?  What I mean is, we don't really need any new things but shopping has never really been all that serious.  Shopping now is actually a hopeful, happy and even optimistic act.  Shopping can give us is a little bit of normalcy, shopping for a new outfit has always made people happy, I see both men and women put on a new jacket, dress or shoes and smile at themselves -- it is made to give you pleasure.  So what is different now?  Moods are heavy, the time is serious and so now, more than ever, shopping really feels like a treat.  A new top just might be that ray of sunshine at a time where we are not sure what is happening, a cozy sweater the perfect item to layer with for eating outside, a new set of boots will give you a little pep in your step or pretty earrings that will encourage you to put your make up on and smile at your reflection once again.  I get it, living in your athleisure sweats seems so comfortable, but if you do it for long enough it can also change your whole demeanor simply because it can make you feel like one day is the same as the other.  The whole reason we change our clothes, our style and looks is to show our personality for different days and occasions.  We dress up or down depending upon our activities -- all of this affects our moods.  Of course, I'm not a psychologist but here are a few things I have done to cheer myself up, support other local businesses and get that pep back in my step.  

Closet Clean Up

I have moved twice in the last year (ugh before and during the pandemic!) but the good news is it forced me to really go through my closet and purge myself of clothes for both myself and my children that we no longer wear or my kids have outgrown.  I couldn't believe how many items I have kept for years.  I donated a lot of items to local charities in Greenwich, friends who have small children or cherished fashion pieces to my staff but I also listed some items on Poshmark which is super easy to use and allows you to negotiate with buyers.  If you have shoes or bags you have barely worn, this is a great option.  It makes me happy that these items find a new home and great to get some money back.  Cleaning out your things always feels good.  For furniture and home goods, I highly recommend the Local Vault in Greenwich or the Home Consignment Center in San Rafael.  I also donated items to the Greenwich Hospital Thrift Shop.  Many families are in need of furniture and again, I am so happy that items I love are finding a new home -- it is the most sustainable, good thing you can do for the planet.  If you need help with the clean out -- there are several local stylists who can help you sort through all of your items for donating and even update some of your older items to keep wearing. 

 

Marc Blazer by Vanessa Bruno $595

It's All About Layering

In California, we love to talk about layering because we enjoy warm days in the fall but as the sun goes down, there is a chill in the air and the sweaters and light coats come out.  Now that outdoor dining is so popular and eating outside with friends, layering is more popular than ever.  I hosted a few friends on my deck this week for a small get together and everyone was sure to bring a couple of layers of sweaters and coats as the temperature fell.  As fate would have it, we bought very little cocktail party pieces this year for our store and lots of beautiful sweaters and coats.  Beautiful, luxurious prints, cozy oversized coats and sweaters that are exactly right for the time.  Ponchos and shawls all perfect for chilly fall nights.  

 

 

Dark Green and Orange Silk Shawl by Barbieri $155

Now I've Cleaned Out My Closet, What or Why Should I Buy Anything New?

Shopping isn't deep so stop feeling guilty about it.  You can shop for any reason you want but shopping for fashion at it's essence should be fun.  Pick a new blouse that if you wear will lighten your mood, make you feel good and gives you pleasure.  I mean it.  It's that simple.  Accessorize -- scarves, earrings, bracelets -- wear your personality, we are outside more than ever, walking the neighborhood, strolling the Avenue or Main Street -- a little pop of color will make you smile more, I promise.  Outerwear & Shoes -- heels are out and comfort is in but you also can't ignore the amazing deals on shoes going on for heels -- if that's what you love go for it, you may never see these discounts again!  For comfort, sneakers, boots, flats -- so many options and so much fun.

Finally, we really appreciate everyone who shops to support small business of course every little bit helps.  We all want happy clients who enjoy our merchandise but please, please don't guilt shop.  I don't want you to buy things you won't use -- I want you to love each and every item.  Maybe I'm being silly but clothes really do make my mood and I think if you find yourself in a rut -- the Covid Blues I call it, change up your look and see if it helps you.  It won't solve the pandemic, but it may just make you forget it for a few minutes.

Take care, lisa lori 

ps.  we have a great outwear offer right now -- 15% OFF men's & women's until November 2nd -- use code CURATORS15 online or stop by either of our stores.  Cheers --

 

 

 

 

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Tiburon, California -- The Perfect Staycation

Tiburon, California -- The Perfect Staycation

Tiburon, California is home to our new store at 30 Main Street and it is also my new home.  I love it for so many reasons -- gorgeous views of the Bay and close proximity to San Francisco on one side, great places to hike and run, and 30-45  mins to Muir Beach & Muir Woods & my beloved Wine Country.  What's not to love?  If you live in Northern California, Tiburon is perfect for a day trip and if you live further away, we want to encourage you to visit when it is safe again for everyone.  Here is just a few of my favorite reasons why I love it!  

The Views 

Everyone who comes to Tiburon is usually awestruck by the gorgeous views.  From Mount Tam to the city of San Francisco, Tiburon is a peninsula and with water surrounding it from all side it just can't be beat.  You can hike up to see a complete 360 on one of the great trails or you can go to the downtown center and walk along the water and see how gorgeous everything it is.  The surrounding homes on Belvedere Island, Corinthian Island and Tiburon have a distinctly European style and feels like you are somewhere in Italy.  

Main Street -- Eating & Shopping

Of course I'm partial to Main Street because that is where our beautiful new store is but it is truly special along with accompanying Ark Row right around the corner.  With sweeping views on one side and great outdoor dining, this is no ordinary Main Street.  We are across from world famous Sam's Anchor Cafe which is always poppin but also on the street we love Salt & Pepper and Luna Blu (great view and delicious Italian seafood).  Down the street on Ark Row is a wonderful Mexican Taqueria -- Lola's.  On the weekend's this summer, Main Street is closed off and there is dining on the street which has been especially on Saturdays -- it is so fun with music playing and genuine joy.  

While some businesses did close due to the pandemic, others are open (like us!) -- here are a couple of my favorites -- McEvoy Ranch, organic extra virgin olive oils, culinary products and natural beauty products; Candy Store on Main Street; ice cream and delicious sweets including fun vintage treats.   There are also several boutiques, a knitting store and great wine tasting rooms and shops.  You can visit the Tiburon Chamber of Commerce here for an up to date list of which businesses are open or due to open.  

Finally, Tiburon & California in general is all about the outdoors, biking and adventures -- right next door is gorgeous Angel Island State Park and easy to get to with a ferry, bike shops for renting bikes & plenty of grassy places to enjoy a picnic (check out Rustic Bakery or Woodlands Grocey for great sandwiches and drinks).  You can get to Tiburuon easily from San Francisco and vice versa -- here's the easy ferry schedule (which is a fun thing to do as well!).  Again check out times and locations as things may be abbreviated due to the pandemic.  All restaurants and store includings ours require masks inside but for outdoor dining you can eat at your table without -- some towns require masks while walking or biking but again, just check the local town's website for the most up to date information.  

Of course, we would love to see you -- we can arrange private bookings for groups of 4-6 or early hours if you prefer to shop alone.  Please visit us at 30 Main Street or call us at 415 -797-6054.  Cheers!  lisa lori 

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The Perfect Provenance Opens in Tiburon, California

The Perfect Provenance Opens in Tiburon, California

We are thrilled to announce the opening of The Perfect Provenance at 30 Main Street in Tiburon, California.  This is the second location for our company and we believe this is a perfect location to meet new clients & share our perfect products.  Here are all the details -- please let us know if you have any questions at info@theperfectprovenance.com & follow us on social media for new updates & news @theperfectprovenance. 

  • Our Tiburon store hours will be 10:00 a.m. - 6 p.m. Tuesday thru Saturday & on Sunday -- 11:00 a.m. - 5 p.m.  However, we will announce extended hours for some summer nights & we are happy to offer private appointments for those who would like to shop by themselves.  We also offer delivery within a 5 mile radius.  We have a 14 day return policy for full price merchandise & sale merchandise is final sale. 
  • We are offering you a special offer of 15% OFF for your first purchase in store when you mention Curators Club #winwin -- please note it cannot be used in conjunction with other discounts.
  • Join our Curators Club to receive 5% OFF year round on everything in store, receive exclusive invitations and offers -- if you are reading this email you are already in our Curator's Club -- if you don't want to belong we invite you opt out of the email.  
  • At The Perfect Provenance, new merchandise arrives weekly -- because of the pandemic many items were delayed as you can imagine but they will arrive -- check out our weekly emails or social media to see what is new and in store. 
  • Perfect Loyalty Program -- sign up for our loyalty program in store or online and earn points, special offers & rewards for every dollar you spend, what's not to like about that? 
  • This Week -- July 6th-July 12th Enjoy 25% Off all Fine Jewelry with code FINE25 .  Select from our signature 18K diamond collection (pictured above) or our beautiful fine jewelry designers.  Amazing savings and a great opportunity to buy beautiful pieces.

Stop by and & say hello to me in Tiburon, I am in and out of the store all the time -- can't wait to see you -- cheers!  lisa lori 

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Men's Fashion Summer Looks from Stylist Maria Turkel

Men's Fashion Summer Looks from Stylist Maria Turkel

This past week, The Perfect Provenance hosted our first Zoom fashion event with Stylist Maria Turkel that focused on Men's Fashion with perfect ideas for Father's Day and summer dressing. Maria put together a beautiful collection of outfits and shared great tips for putting together casual summer looks.  100% of ticket sales went to benefit Greenwich's Neighbor to Neighbor Food Pantry.  If you would like to donate to Neighbor To Neighbor and help our local community, please click here.

Stylist Maria Turkel spotlighted three great summer looks for men (and a bonus one for women) in our Greenwich store.

  • Colorful Men's Layering: Pair a fun graphic tee with a solid button down Maria uses her sleeve rolling trick to give the look a more relaxed feel.

Items in image above: Bob Marley Tee by Madeworn $160 - Hartford Linen Button Down $165 - Hartford Linen White Shorts on sale for $90 - Cognac Leather Shoes by Testosterone $140

 

  • Blue Tonal Dressing: Blue is a great colorway for the Summer and putting together an outfit in one color tone can make a great statement look. Maria styled this look with her signature French tuck and pinched rolled pants to show the ankle which makes the leg look longer.

Items in image above: Striped Polo by Hartford $135 - Troy Pants by Hartford $190 - Blue Jean Shoe Rivieras $70

 

  • Grey, Tan, & Brown Styling: You can elevate a look by staying in the same color tones. Maria put together this great neutral tone outfit that is perfect for everyday or a casual occasion.

Items in image above: Grey Linen Button Down by Hartford $165 - Classic Charcoal Tee by Hartford $75 - Tuscon Cotton Chino by Hartford $215 - Cognac Leather Shoe by Testosterone $140 -- Club Sand Belt by Billybelt  $47

 

We had a great time hosting this special Zoom event with Maria and are looking forward to planning a women's event soon. If you have any questions about the above looks or about styling please email us at Tiffany Mezzone -- tmezzone@theperfectprovenance.com or call 203-900-1131.  We will be hosting a women's event in the coming weeks -- if you would like to join us for that, please let us know!  Have a great weekend.  Cheers -- lisa lori

About Maria Turkel -- Wardrobe Stylist

Maria Turkel is an entrepreneur with years of experience building connections and support between herself, her clients and local businesses. In 2007, she founded Maria Turkel Wardrobe Styling which has served clients from Fortune 500 companies to start-up CEOs to local philanthropists to teens who are just starting to define their personal style. Maria’s goal is to help her clients feel confident and authentic in their everyday lives through their wardrobe choices by editing and cleaning their closets, taking them shopping, building outfits head-to-toe and creating LookBooks that serve as tools to make getting dressed each day easy and efficient. Previously, Maria built a successful career in the film and television industry in Los Angeles. She is a former Wardrobe Supervisor on numerous shows including the iconic series, Friends. As a personal stylist, she has a vibrant email newsletter subscriber base and an engaged social media community. Her focus has always been to build deep, reciprocal relationships whether in Hollywood or Fairfield County.

To contact Maria and work with her, you can visit www.mariaturkel.com or follow her on Instagram @mariaturkel -- tell her we sent you!  

 

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Perfect News, Mother's Day Gifts & More!

Perfect News, Mother's Day Gifts & More!

Every week in our weekly emails, we offer new opportunities for shopping, menus for our Cafe 47 and exclusive news about our shop & community.  It's easy to sign up for exclusive news -- you can also enjoy 5% OFF year round with code CURATORS CLUB.  This week, we have two new great offers as well for Mother's Day gifts or Graduation.  

Enjoy 25% off our Circle of Life Collection Fine Jewelry Collection with code CIRCLE.  Enjoy 10% off all of our beautiful handbags with code #PERFECTBAGS.  

  • Wine & Spirits Delivery -- Our friends at, Deutsch Family Wine and Spirits, has entered into a partnership with the alcohol home delivery app Drizly. You can now easily find their leading wines and spirits brands such as: Josh Cellars, Yellowtail, Layer Cake, Redemption, Gray Whale, Baroni Fini and Fleurs De Prairie on the Drizly mobile app and website.  If you are interested in getting their wines and spirits through the Drizly app you can download the at the Apple App Store or on Google Play or on the web at Drizly.com
  • Looking for a fun, personalized way to send a birthday greeting or to spread some joy to someone you love?   Hi Note Greetings was recently created to help friends send customized songs, smiles, and joy to loved ones for all occasions -- birthdays, anniversaries, condolences, or just to brighten someone's day.  There are four different professional vocalists hailing from Broadway, opera & renowned singer & trumpeter Chris Norton  to choose from, and songs range in price from $5-$20.  To order a song, visit @hinotegreetings on Instagram, or email Sabrina Potterpin at hinotegreetings@gmail.com. Most videos are sent within 24-48 hours, and Sabrina would be delighted to help you choose the perfect artist and song for your greeting. 
  • New Personal Styling Service --  We are happy to announce we have launched a new personalized styling service.  To learn more, please take our  Perfect Personal Styling Survey
  • New Delivery Service for Greenwich, Westport & Darien, CT -- CCC Rapid Delivery can deliver from Perfect Provenance or a number of other local retailers and markets in Greenwich, Westport & Darien -- for more details write CCCdelivers4you@gmail.com.  
  • Enjoy free delivery within a 10 mile radius of 30 Main Street in Tiburon, California Monday - Friday on select merchandise.  Call us to see what is available locally as well through overnight delivery (overnight postage charges apply).

Have a great week.  Cheers -- Lisa Lori 

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Weekending at Home


Treat yourself. Dance in the living room, bake the cake, laugh out loud.

LSA Serve Cake Stand $85
 
At The Perfect Provenance, our team has been working incredibly hard to stay afloat and find out what our place is in this new economy and environment is.  From the minute we opened, our goal was to connect to our community and be part of our client's lives no matter where you live.  I felt that retail had become sterile and impersonal and I wanted to combine all of the things that I loved -- food, fashion, and home -- to create one of a kind experiences -- similar to the feeling that you have on vacation when find a special gift or dress or shirt, a terrific meal and memories shared with family and friends.  Now that we are operating differently I believe our mission is more important than ever before because with so much stress in the world, we hope that we can take your mind off it for a moment and help create happiness in your homes.  It is not merely enough for our business to just barely survive, I want to give our employees and a clients a refuge where you can escape and laugh.   

More than 20 years ago, I was diagnosed with a life changing autoimmune disease that changed my career and life and then, subsequently I had three children that were born with a lot of medical challenges.  During those incredibly challenging years, I often found myself asking, why me, why us, why now? I tried to find meaning in how I could have such horrible luck and I learned through my journey to believe in the randomness of life, that we are not always in control of the universe and despite overwhelming challenges, I did still have control over my emotions and how I chose to raise my family.  It became my life's goal to create a 'normal' environment because children find joy in so many simple things -- eating ice cream, playing games, dance in the living room and family.  Instead of focusing on triggers that brought me sadness I began to focus on something I called #triggerhappiness.  I wrote about it for the Huffington Post in 2017 (click link here) and thought you might find it of interest and share if you feel it will help someone else struggling.  And so, I ask all of you now to take a deep breath, make a plan, create a structure, find things to celebrate, have a good cry if you need to but also, pick yourself up, reinvent yourself, ask for help when you need it --  but know that it will be possible to find joy again.  
To that end, we are working creatively to help you celebrate birthdays, romance (yes romance!), graduations, holidays and more at home and virtually. We don't need to feel guilty if we are not stressed 24/7, we owe it to ourselves, family and friends to take a break.  Take care, lisa lori 

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Bless the Cook -- Comfort Food

 

I hail from a large Italian American family -- seven brothers and sisters -- we grew up in a loud, busy family with two parents who both loved to cook.  After our dinner prayer my father would always kick off the meal with 'God Bless the Cook'  -- my sister Mary Williams owns a catering company in Orange County that is aptly named Bless the Cook -- below is her recipe for a delicious carrot cake and we are also offering it on our Take Out menu.  You can view here.  If you are in her geographic area of Southern Orange County (Mission Viejo) California, you can write her at blessthecookcatering@hotmail.com or follow her on instagram @blessthecookcatering.  Enjoy!

CARROT CAKE BREAD

 Ingredients

 2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons cinnamon

½ teaspoon salt

1 cup raisins

½ cup flaked or grated coconut

½ cup chopped walnuts

1 cup applesauce

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups grated raw carrots

3 eggs

 

Instructions

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

 

Spray with baking spray (or grease/flour) a 9” x 5” x 3” loaf pan.

 

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, cinnamon & salt.

 

Add raisins, coconut and walnuts, and stir to combine well.

 

Whisk eggs in separate, medium bowl.

 

Add grated carrots, applesauce & vanilla to eggs.

 

Incorporate dry ingredients with wet until well mixed.

 

Pour batter into prepared loaf pan.

 

Bake 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

 

 

 

Catering

Custom Invitations

Event Planning

949-300-9637 blessthecookcatering@hotmail.com

 

Mary William

 

 

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