And we’re here! Hello weekend! It’s been a busy ol’ week here at FBrides, and we’ve found ourselves looking inwards a little more over the past couple of weeks: allowing ourselves the comforts we desire, and focusing on creating that sense of Hygge in our homes as the colder weather sets in.
In the spirit of feeling seasonal, we’re gonna delve into the world of baked chocolatey comforts, Sunday sanctuaries, warm winter salad bowls, some mind-blowing halloween makeup tutorials, an award-nominated read and some super luxe loungewear (because in our house, dark nights = snuggly nights in!)
Go treat yourself a cosy mug of something yummy and let’s get into some serious loveliness!
One: Malted Comforts
I mean, I need to figure out a way of making this recipe vegan, because these little delights are calling. my. name.
Who doesn’t love a good cake, right? (Still mourning the loss of Bake Off, don’t talk to me)
If the cake happens to be made of chocolate, I may be arguably more inclined to eat six of them. And what’s that? They’re topped with chocolate too? Well, it’d be rude to say no… Add in a pinch of that warming malty flavour that feels oh-so-Autumnal and now you’re really speaking my love language.
Do yourself a solid, check out Design Love Fest’s recipe and get your bake on!
Two: Sunday Sanctuary
The day of rest. There’s just something about a Sunday that feels different, slower.
We’ve been allowing ourselves the time and space to acknowlege our desire for a slower pace on Sundays, to indulge in rituals we love, putting the to-do list and the rest of the world on pause while we take time to turn inwards.
Takyour time brewing your morning coffee, just how you like it. Bake (or reheat, let’s be real!) your favourite pastries, to eat snuggled in bed with your loved ones. Wile away an hour or two on that book you’ve been meaning to read. Allow yourself to linger in the moment, not rushing to the next task, but creating this sense of Sanctuary just for one day.
Three: Now Reading
…And on that note, this little number had been my Sunday fix of late: Deborah Levy’s ‘Hot Milk’.
Shortlisted for the Man Booker prize this year, Levy’s fictional work is a hypnotic tale of female sexuality and power, and I cannot get enough! In fact, I’ve had to pace myself, a chapter per sitting, to savour and really absorb Levy’s beautiful writing. Here’s a little more of what you can expect courtesy of Penguin Books:
Two women arrive in a village on the Spanish coast. Rose is suffering from a strange illness andher doctors are mystified. Her daughter Sofia has brought her here to find a cure with the infamous and controversial Dr Gomez – a man of questionable methods and motives. Intoxicated by thick heat and the seductive people who move through it, both women begin to see their lives clearly for the first time in years.
Through the opposing figures of mother and daughter, Deborah Levy explores the strange and monstrous nature of womanhood. Dreamlike and utterly compulsive, Hot Milk is a delirious fairy tale of feminine potency, a story both modern and timeless.
Now, I’ve mentioned this incredible ethical Australian brand before, but YCL Jewels have just released their stunning new collection, Inara, and I’d be lying if I didn’t acknowledge the loveliness I feel from it!
Sophisticated, minimalistic jewellery for the modern & mystic woman. Our mission: to create jewellery that is not just worn for aesthetic purpose, but rather to create jewellery that holds meaning to the beholder.
…And the Inara collection does exactly that. Taking ancient principles of sacred geometry, YCL have created yet another amazing line, inspired by the beam of light that was designer, Fabienne’s, recently passed canine companion, Inara.
The story behind this collection is so moving, and as a dedicated dog mama myself, it spoke volumes to me that Fabienne honoured her companion in such a beautiful way.
Five: Buddha Bowls
I make no secret of it: I LOVE a Buddha Bowl / Bliss Bowl / Grain Bowl [insert any other hipster names you can find for them!]
Give them to me in the summer, the spring, and heck, even into autumn and winter, I will always chow down on a bowl of wholesome greens, grains and salad, especially if it’s drizzled with lashings of yummy dressing! Hell. Yeah.
‘But salad, in the autumn and winter, Clare? Really?!’
Yes mate. Really.
Although I love nothing more than a bowl of raw food and all the goodness it means for my body, in this colder weather a little warmth goes a long way, right? And adding a corner of roasted butternut squash, or piling my salad alongside a mound of rice, or spicy refried beans is just heavenly. The mix of temperatures, the mix of textures… Every bite is different and you still get your hot food fix while getting all that plant-based goodness!
Big fan – right here!
The great thing about Buddha Bowls is that anything goes: you want Asian flavours? Steam up some pak choi, bake some marinaded tofu and drizzle with a sweet soy dressing! Fancy some Mexican spice? Add your favourite herbs and spices to a can of black beans to heat, throw in some avocado and and sprinkle fresh coriander and you’re there. These bowls of goodness are so flexible!
Six: Gettin’ Freaky
Because while you’re getting stuck into that Buddha Bowl of delights, you’re gonna need some light entertainment, and my personal favourite fix these past few weeks has been some of Youtube’s finest beauty bloggers absolutely nailing their Halloween looks.
…Like seriously, I think I have an addiction, I can’t get enough of these tutorials!
Whether it’s Chloe Morello‘s great last minute cat look, using all standard makeup products you probably have in your collection already (namely a LOT of black eye shadow!)…
Or Jaclyn Hill‘s SUPER glam interpretation of Disney’s Cruella de Ville…
Or something truly terrifyingly demonic from the astoundingly talented Nikkie Tutorials…
Or a beautiful Lady in the Moon look for my celestial loving luna girls by It’s Likely Makeup…
Their transformations are just fascinating to watch and have been getting me totally fired up to celebrate Halloween! (Ps. I’m totally going for Chloe’s cat look!)
Seven: Embroidered Art
Continuing the idea of creating a sense of Hygge at home for ourselves and looking inward for a moment to find what really makes us tick, a friend of mine recently shared an image of these embroidered works of art on her instagram account, and the moment I saw them I fell in love.
We’ve been a loving the trend for quirky, modern embroidery for a few years now, but when I saw the work of Sarah K Benning something just clicked. The use of negative space, the muted tonal colours, the intriguing female portraits and her use of plants is just on my wavelength.
Find the perfect nook in your home and hang a little something that sings to your soul; I certainly intend to.
Eight: Holding Space
I’ve came across this phrase for the first time just recently, and it seems to have been cropping up ever since, which I’ve been loving! Anything that educates us on how to better love our fellow beings is worth the read, I think!
What does it mean to hold space for someone?
To ‘hold space’ for someone means we are willing to walk alongside them in whatever journey they’re on completely free of judgement. When we hold space for other people, we open our hearts, offer unconditional support, and let go of judgement and control.
How do you translate that into real life?
It is very Taoist in its essence—that in doing nothing we do everything, that in being empty we allow space to be filled by something beyond us—yet many of the yogic teachings of the Yamas can also provide guidance on how to hold space. When we hold space we are bringing the loving kindness and compassion of ahimsa to a situation. That’s far beyond sympathy. As Buddhist teacher Pema Chödrön reminds us: “Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals.” In that moment of non-judgment, the person we are with can have their experience without feeling ashamed or inferior.
Holding space is, therefore, not just a beautiful gift to another, it is an opportunity for self-exploration.
You can read more about Holding Space, and how it can enrich our relationships with our partner, friends, colleagues and children via this article on the Wanderlust blog. It really challenged my approach to helping others in a moment of need, so do let us know what you think in the comments below. We’d love to hear your positive experiences of others Holding Space for you, or you for them!
It’s that amazing sense of support you get just from a person being ‘there’, they maybe seemingly doing ‘nothing’, but something beautiful happens – we find ourselves gaining peace or clarity and we feel loved and supported. Them ‘holding space’ for us allows us to move through the experience we are having securely, instead of pushing it away in fear; it’s healing.
Nine: Now Listening
You know how it is. You sit down at your desk to start work, you open up Spotify and you hit a wall.
All the tunes you’ve been loving lately just won’t cut it today. That album you once danced round your living room to just isn’t quite the right vibe… And then your buddy swoops in and saves the day with two AMAZING suggestions that blow your mind.
Well Festival Brides founder, Laura, did just that for me earlier this week! Always on the hunt for new and exciting music, Laura had recently discovered two new artists, both with totally different vibes, but both equally brilliant.
First up, Berlin artist, Tom Adams, with his debut album, Voyages By Starlight. This review by Banquet Records describes his movingly minimal soundscapes perfectly:
Tom Adams conveys immense emotion utilizing just a few elements. Masterfully balancing tactile acoustic and electronic instruments, Adams’ music is as expansive as it is elegantly peculiar – evoking cinematic odes to nature’s majesty and the divergent depths of the human condition. Receiving accolades for his wide-ranging output of synth-guided exploits, chamber pop, melancholic piano-ambient works, and moody film scores, Tom Adams veers into the cerebral and introspective on his debut EP for London’s Kowloon Records.
And secondly, on a TOTALLY different scene, is an 80’s inspired two-piece from Peterborough, LeBrock. Their album, Action & Romance, is a huge dose of nostalgic synth pop; futuristic in the most retro of ways.
Basically if you enjoyed Netflix’s Stranger Things for it’s seriously Eighties vibe and soudntrack, you’ll LOVE LeBrock!
Ten: Luxe Loungin’
Now I don’t know about you, but for me dark nights and cold weather basically result in many a cosy evening indoors with my beau… Yeah, I kinda go into hibernation for the winter, I guess!
Which, of course, inevitably means I live in lounging clothes from 5pm onwards from September through to about March (#noshame #sorrynotsorry). So, in the interest of not stealing all my husband’s comfortable oversized clothes, I’ve been looking to up my lounge clothing game to something a little more luxe… And oh my, did Urban Outfitters deliver.
Sassy-while-cosy over the knee socks, one-pieces in chic knitted neutrals and an elegantly modern grey knitted hoody that is just screaming my name…
Have an amazing weekend all to yourselves and we’ll see you on the flip side, friends!
Peace + Love