Tag Archives: Book Club

  • Saturday, April 26, 2014

    When it comes to preparing a crowd-pleasing dessert or simply satisfying our sweet tooth on a Saturday afternoon, Miette: Recipes from San Francisco’s Most Charming Pastry Shop by Meg Ray and Leslie Jonath is one of our go-to sources for finding the perfect baked treat. Filled with the classic delights that the award-winning bakery offers, this darling book will teach you how to make everything from their Strawberry Tomboy Cake to their Brown Butter Shortbread Cookies. And with its scalloped pages and rich, colored photographs, this book lends a Parisian touch to any coffee table or shelf.

    If you haven’t yet found a thoughtful token for a friend or family member, this lovely book would make a wonderful present for Mother’s Day, or a great birthday gift for a gal who loves all things sweet. You can also make one of the recipes yourself to bring to a spring party or drop off for a friend in need of cheering up!

    Have you tried any Miette recipes or visited the bakery? We’re so glad we can recreate Meg Ray’s recipes in our own kitchen (and add as much frosting as we’d like)!

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Friday, April 11, 2014

    While there's a certain beauty found in pushing oneself through heady classic literature, there's also nothing like unwinding with a clever graphic novel. If you're on the hunt for a relaxing read that you can revisit time and time again, here are some of our current favorites in the graphic novel department.

    French Milk by Lucy Knisley: The perfect read for Francophiles, this illustrated journal documents Knisley's six-week trip to Paris with her mom. Filled with thoughts of her boyfriend back home, her relationship with her mother, and her milestone birthday, Knisley weaves in these deeper topics with commentary on delicious food and tourist spots.

    Ghost World by Daniel Clowes: This 90s graphic novel features the oddly dark and humorous adventures of two best friends who are worried about growing apart. Adapted to the screen in 2001, this curious graphic novel explores those daunting social changes that haunt the reality of adulthood.

    Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh: A collection of blog posts and new comics from Brosh's blog of the same name, this graphic novel explores everything from grammatical errors to heavier topics like depression and adulthood. Hyperbole and a Half is a hilarious read that you'll fly through whether or not you've kept up with Brosh's blog.

    Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi: Now an animated film, this novel is a memoir of a young girl's daily life in Iran during the Iranian Revolution. A lesson on history and politics in addition to a coming-of-age tale, this graphic novel is a must-read for those exploring the genre.

    Obsessive Consumption by Kate Bingaman-Burt: Perfect for a gal on a budget, this book is the result of the author's personal project to pay off her debt after university by drawing each item she purchased, as well as her credit card bills, until the debt was paid off. While this book is more of a collection of cute doodles than a graphic novel, the pictures included tell a story in their own right, as they follow Bingaman-Burt through her wedding planning, as well as everyday experiences.

    Fun Home by Alison Bechdel: Capturing the combination of humor, depth, and sadness that laces our everyday experiences, this memoir focuses on Bechdel's relationship with her now-deceased father. The name of the book itself, which is derived from the family's nickname for the funeral home where the father once worked, illustrates the tragicomedy nature of this impactful read.

    Have you read any of these graphic novels? Which one is next on your list?

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, March 22, 2014

    There are few things that bring us as much joy as a good book! We’re always on the hunt for new books to bring into our homes for a touch of inspiration, delicious recipes, or helpful, crafty tips. With the influx of new books on our site, we thought we’d share some of our favorite inspirational style books with you! Gift one to a friend or spruce up your bookshelf or coffee table with one of these fashionable titles.

    Audrey Hepburn: International Cover Girl by Scott Britzel: Perfect for lovers of old-Hollywood actresses, this book details the life of legendary Audrey Hepburn. This gorgeous coffee table book features hundreds of her international magazine covers, making it a fun book to flip through on relaxing weekend afternoons.

    Paris in Color by Nicole Roberston: Bursting with all the colors of the rainbow, this book is a must-have for Francophiles and those with an eye for photography or design. From outdoor cafes and signs to flowers and scrumptious pastries, this book reignites our wanderlust each time we open it.

    100 Years in Fashion by Cally Blackman:  If you loved our Vintage Clothing Guide, this book will be a great addition to your collection! 100 Years in Fashion takes a deeper look into the history of 20th century fashion, accented with hundreds of beautiful photos and illustrations.

    We hope you’ll find something you love in our book collection! What books have you been eyeing lately?

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, October 12, 2013

    Whether ferns bend towards you like a ray of sunlight or you’ve never been able to keep a cactus alive, Bring the Outdoors In is for you. In this charming design book, Brooklyn stylist and designer Shane Powers (who has worked for the likes of Bloom, Vogue, Martha Stewart Living, and West Elm) shows you how to bring a touch of natural beauty into your home. But there are enough design ideas with dried flowers and succulents for even the brown thumbs among us to take heart!

    Bring the Outdoors In includes twenty-two simple DIY garden projects in a wide variety in terms of plants used and visual aesthetic, but every design lends a natural tranquility to any space. There are step-by-step instructions, information about light and temperature needs for different kinds of plants, styling ideas, and helpful resources, so transforming a room with outdoor elements doesn’t have to be just for master gardeners and crafters.

    The importance of bringing plants into your home cannot be underestimated either! Plants not only comfort and welcome, creating a sense of serenity, they have been proven to reduce stress levels and clean the air we breathe. Finding the best botanicals for your interior can be tricky, but the photos and ideas in this book will inspire you towards unexpected uses of baby’s breath, ferns, succulents, vines, tillandsia, and so much more. A willow wreath might add the elegant natural touch to a gallery wall that had been missing, or a colorful dried floral garland may vibrantly enhance a window dressing.

    Green thumb or no, this DIY book will inspire you to bring the outdoors in. As a coffee table book, it’s sure to be a favorite with visitors for its gorgeous photography and unconventional ideas, while it also makes a thoughtful housewarming gift. We suggest you consider this your essential guide for creative greenery if you’re bored with the typical potted house plant!

    Be sure to add Bring the Outdoors In to your coffee table stack and take a look at the rest of our wonderful collection of good reads.

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, September 28, 2013

    The hand lettered, whimsically illustrated book is a charming guide to bringing sustainability into your life and home. A book of tutorials by DIY queen Raleigh Briggs. Conversational, helpful, inspiring. This book is never preachy, it emphasizes making the right choices for your health and body and home, while sharing tips and tutorials. It makes you realize that there are so many natural alternatives for market consumer items. The idea that reduced consumption is better than conscious consumption. Promotes living an intentional, sustainable existence. If you have been wanting to live more simply, value sustainability, and appreciate DIY, this book is the best place to start.

    Make Your Place is divided into three sections, each filled with fun, conversational writing and easy to follow tutorials. In the natural health and herbal remedies section, there are instructions on how to make salves, tinctures, and infusions for an alternative approach to healing many common ailments. While conventional medicine is important in many scenarios, there are times when you can solve a tummy ache with the right herbs as opposed to immediately reaching for a pill. If you have been wanting to make the switch to natural cleaning, the second section on natural housekeeping and body care has cheap and easy ideas. Learn the ingredients for natural cleaners, so your walls, windows and floors will be squeaky clean without the need for harmful chemicals in your home. The body care section may have you rethinking your shampoo and conditioners, and leaving the expensive face wash and scrubs at the department store for natural alternatives. After reading this section you may find yourself leaving the conventional cleaners at the supermarket and making your own. Home-made cleaners are less expensive, gentler for the earth, and not harmful to the nervous and respiratory system since they are made without neurotoxins.

    This is the perfect introduction as well as a quick reference you will definitely want to keep on hand. The simple skills we should all have for our homes, health, and families.

    Don't miss out on the rest of other wonderful books too!

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, September 21, 2013

    The Little Book of Lettering by Emily Gregory is a darling must-read for anyone with a budding interest in design or love of letters. Typography is powerful for the way it communicates through form and layout, not simply relaying a message but influencing how you understand a message. Letters can become more than a mode of communication but a work of art on their own. The art of typography has seen a creative renaissance in recent years! This renewed love for thoughtful lettering is a move away from impersonal, computerized fonts to a more personal, handmade aesthetic. The book profiles artists, designers, and typesetters around the world and their creative designs, surveying the diverse experiments and innovations taking place for an overview of contemporary lettering.

    The book is organized around the concise explanations of digitally drawn lettering, hand-drawn lettering, and three-dimensional lettering and the artist profiles. It is so fun to flip through the different lettering examples and see the ways they are pushing the boundaries of type. Each artist profile gives you a sense of what the artist is trying to achieve, their processes, and how they have balanced creating something new with the need for readability. We loved reading about the benefits and drawbacks of digital versus hand-drawn, and learning why one designer might choose to work with vectors and Adobe Illustrator while another would opt for tracing paper and pencil.

    The Little Book of Lettering makes a charming coffee table book for design lovers and anyone with a soft spot for lovely typography. It is adorably compact, brightly colored, and creatively inspiring, the sort of beautiful book to flip through that reminds us why we won’t be switching over to an e-reader anytime soon!

    Don't miss out on the rest of other wonderful books too!

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, September 14, 2013

    It’s impossible not to adore this little pink primer on finding and keeping love. We are romantics after all, so The Fortune Telling Book of Love, full of signs, fortunes, and spells for sparking love and keeping a relationship strong, appealed to our girly side. We are also smitten with the gold edged pages and the cute vintage-inspired illustrations which make it that much sweeter. Encountering this book is a little bit like playing Ouija board when you were twelve and away at summer camp: it will make you believe in magic again!

    From the Introduction: “There are time tested steps you can take to draw love in, determine if that love is true, and, once you have committed to love, keep the flame of connection and passion alive.” Doesn’t that sound like a book any girl would want to read?! Whether you think a cricket chirping from the east or a 4 leaf clover is a sign of love on its way, we adore the idea that there could be omens in the air. And if reading the symbols in your dreams doesn’t work, then head straight for the love spells. But remember, magic only works if you believe in it! If you are a fan of astrology, you will like the explanations of each sign, the best love matches based on the compatibility of each sign, and the inclusion of the Chinese Zodiac for love and the Native American astrology.

    There are so many cute sections, like finding out what the day of your first date foretells about your relationship and how to analyze the penmanship of your beau. Some of what you read will make you giggle, some parts will intrigue you, and the section on foods may have you sprinkling a little cinnamon on your morning cappuccino to attract love (because who knows, maybe it works!) This cute, quirky little volume quite simply belongs on every romantic gal’s bookshelves.

    Don't miss out on the rest of other wonderful books too!

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, September 7, 2013

    As you probably heard your mother say one early weekend morning while browsing the vintage dresses at a garage sale, “One person’s trash is another person’s treasure!” The interior design book Flea Market Style by Emily Chalmers beautifully illuminates that idea, promising to help you find and incorporate flea market gems into your home. With inspirational photos and fun text (it’s like going to coffee with a dear friend who just happens to have the best advice on what to do with a salvaged wooden bench, an old sofa with good bones, or a bit of vintage lace), this book is sure to delight anyone who appreciates a modern-vintage aesthetic.

    The first section, Flea Market Finds, covers the range of objects you might search for at flea markets for every part of your home, including furniture, lighting, glassware, kitchenware, fabrics and collectibles. This section will help you create a plan of what to look for and how to incorporate it into your home, whether you consider your home style to be retro, modern, minimalist, country rustic or eclectic. The second section, Putting It All Together, shows you how to transform your interior room by room. It offers helpful advice on how to spot gems even among the trash heap, how to create a color scheme, and how to re-purpose and re-invent your flea market finds (like adding chalkboard paint to transform a chest of drawers for the kid’s room.)

    We love Target as much as the next bargain hunting gal, but Flea Market Style inspires us to step away from modern mass production to “recycle and revive pieces with soul and style”. After reading this book, you will want to grab your coffee to go next Saturday morning and browse the nearest flea market for timeless, well-loved objects to beautify your home! And who knows, that original Eames chair you’ve been dreaming of might just be waiting for you beneath a heap of junk.

    Don't miss out on the rest of other wonderful books too!

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, August 31, 2013

    Motherhood brings with it sweet new joys and tough new challenges. It is a time when a sense of possibility arises, and with it an opportunity to follow a dream or creative passion that may have been on the backburner for years. Pursuing an alternative career can allow moms greater flexibility, more time at home with their children, as well as the creative satisfaction of entrepreneurship. Written by Meg Mateo and Cat Seto, two successful businesswomen and mothers who draw from their own life experiences, Mom Inc. is the definitive must-read for aspiring mom-preneurs. This practical guide to running a successful business from home will be your first and most important resource in turning your ideas into reality.

    Mom Inc. aims to help you define the right niche for your skills and teach you how to get your business up and running. The book is divided into eight chapters: the entrepreneurial mom, starting a blog, offering a service, creating a product, opening an online retail shop, business basics, getting the word out, and surviving the juggle. It is full of great advice on branding, creating a business plan, and marketing. There are inspiring case study examples, like fashion designer Cynthia Rowley and Style Me Pretty blogger Abby Larson. Unlike any other book in its genre, Mom Inc. tackles not only the nitty-gritty topics of starting a business, but also essential tips on the organization and planning it takes to balance work life with motherhood.

    We adore this insightful, honest book about what it takes to build a business as a mother and think that you will too. Whatever your dream may be, in order to strike out on your own path and join the mom-preneur movement, you are going to need a plan, determination, a strong belief in yourself…and this inspiring guide

    Don't miss out on the rest of other wonderful books too!

    xo,
    Ruche


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  • Saturday, August 24, 2013

    Little Oink is not your typical pig. Sure, he likes truffle mushrooms as much as the next baby hog, but he would rather dig them out of the ground with a dainty shovel than his snout! This neat little fellow loves to clean, but Mama and Papa Pig won't have it. They are trying to raise him to be a proper pig, which means he has to learn to make a proper mess. "Don't come out until your room is a pigsty," says Papa Pig. "I won't have any child of mine going out looking so neat and clean. It's just not acceptable," says Mama Pig.

    The one thing this little pig doesn’t like? Mess up time. The superbly creative and adorable ink and watercolor drawings by Jen Corace are paired with quirky-cute, clever writing by Amy Krouse Rosenthal to tell a story with a humorous twist on a universal dilemma. Your mini-Ruchettes will giggle as Little Oink is forced to unmake his bed, unfold his clothes, put on dirty stained clothes, and drag in some mud before he can go out to play. He’s jealous of his friends who get to clean their rooms, and he decides that when he has kids, he will let them clean their rooms as much as they want. And that’s part of what makes this book so darling and hilarious, because every adult can remember the feeling of being young and thinking, I’m not going to make my kids go to bed at a certain time, or do their homework, or clean their room before going out to play.

    Little Oink will become a quick family favorite, and with a sweet story that ends “hap-pig-ly ever after”, we’re sure you will want to read it over and over at bedtime as much as your little ones!

    Don’t miss the other cute bedtime reads for your mini-Ruchette in our children's books section!

    xo,
    Ruche


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