Exotic Collections: African Masks

Happy Monday Fancy Lacy Community!!!

I hope your week-end was relaxing. Let’s continue with our series. The fourth collection I want to share with you today is African masks. Personally,  I have a love and hate obsession with African masks. Some masks,  I love. Others,  I love to hate. African masks are conversation pieces in a room. I love masks with no or little facial expressions. Get Inspired.

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African masks are authentic. The traditional African ornaments add a touch of Africa in a home. Find a beautiful vintage piece that speaks to you and add it in your space. From Chic Posh.

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You can balance a space with two long mask. This neutral room is very simple but beautiful. It is harmonious to have a pattern or color palette repetition. Here we can see black/white pattern repetition. From Habitually Chic.

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A style  is the ability to mix rare or unusual pieces to make them work in the space. Unusual masks’ collection can be stylish as seen in the above picture. From Mechant Design.

You missed previous Exotic Collections? You can read about each section here : mud cloth, African baskets, and African stools.

Stay Fancy and come back again.

 

XOXO

Judith

 

 

 

Exotic Collections: 3 Unique African Stool for Any Stylish Space

I don’t know about you. Sometimes, I have the impression that when the word “exotic” is mentioned – The mind think of the brightest colors out there like red, bright yellow, “jungle green” unsure even if this color exists but you get the point I’m trying to make. The mind will not stop there, it will travel to identify animals like zebra, leopard, lion, and monkies. I realized that the mind fails to bring to my attentation African stools. These items captivate me. It is only when I see pictures of these items that I’m reminded that they are unique creations of the tropics. Be inspired with these beautiful African hand crafted stools.

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Each African tribes have their own way of carving their stools. The three stools, in the center, are known under the name of Tonga, Igbo or Dogan. You can notice that they are slightly different in details depending on the tribe that make them. I couldn’t help myself to mention the framed picture in the background, so unique and artistic! From Pinterest.

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Ashanti stools from Ghana are known as royalty stools. Most times, Ashanti stools have the same shape but come with different details or symbols. I think they make beautiful accent pieces for any room. From John Jacob Interiors.

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Senufo stools from Ivory Coast, they are simple and sculptural in shape. I love the textures of the bed sheets, the neutral palette, the  great wood headboard, the curtains, and the Senufo stools, every piece is working so well with one another in this space. From Better Homes & Gardens.

Have a great week-end!!

 

XOXO

– Judith

 

Exotic Collections: 3 Ways to Use African Baskets

I hope you enjoyed Mud Cloth’s inpiration. The second Exotic Collections in my list is – African baskets. African baskets is not just basketry, it is an Art. In North America/Europe, It came around as interiors’ trend. In Africa, It has been around the continent for centuries. Most African baskets are carefully  hand made with beautiful colorful patterns. It requires high level of craftsmanship to bring in some stunning patterns. Africans consider their baskets as commodities and not a trend. For this reason, it is mostly used to carry food from the open market/crops from the field and people like to store some of their valuable items in these baskets. In the west, we see these baskets more in home Decor. Be inspired with these pictures.

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How beautiful is this basket? I love everything about this Zulu basket. I can see this basket being used to store throws, extra pillows, and even kids’ toys. From Zanzibar.

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The beautiful yellow Senegalese basket has its place in this home office. It appears as if it is used as a trash basket. I am ashamed that I’m unable to remember the source of this picture.

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Don’t neglect the plants in your space. Style them with an African Basket, it is stylish. I beleive this picture is from West Elm. Feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.

XOXO

– Judith

Exotic Collections: Awake Your Style With African Mud Cloth

I have a soft spot for many things. Most times, I keep this as my little secret. This secret gets me in “lala land”. Seriously, I know this may sound a bit cliche but when I see exotic things, I go  “oh la la!” I Love exotic things, not just because of my origins (side eyes). But really, I admire handmade things because of the labour of love that is put into them, their uniqueness, the hard work, and every little details that come out of it.  I want to present you a series of “My Exotic Collections” for interiors as inspiration posts. First in my list is Mud Cloth. Be inspired.

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The Mud Cloth is used as a throw. It is very unique and crisp in this space. The white lines/patterns are in harmony with the neutral palette in this room. From Elle Decor.

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The African fabric is used to upholster this chair. This space looks eclectic with the mixture of beautful patterns. From The Lovely Lifestyle.

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And there was a Mud Cloth Pillow. Bright hue chair with this pillow works so well together. From Pinterst.

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Mud cloth on floors. It adds a character. From Design Files

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Prettify your tables. The last two picture here, black and white Mud Cloth are used as table runners. Basically, there is no limitation when it comes to using the Mud Cloth. From Ruffle Blog.

XOXO

– Judith

 

WAKE UP TO A BREAKFAST ALREADY MADE

Dear Fancy Lacy Community,

On Sunday night I was in my pre-bedtime web-surfing routine when a post from the Super Healthy Kids showed up on my Facebook newsfeed. FIY, I’ve been sourcing my most fabulous recipes from their website, so if you’re a foodie like myself, you have to subscribe to the SHK.

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Anyway, back to Sunday night. I’ve been meal planning for a while so I had a breakfast solution for the next few mornings yet somehow I felt uninspired. But, along came the new post from the Super Healthy Kids, and seconds later my kitchen light was on as I prepared to test yet another one of their brilliant meal ideas. This time, I was in for a whole new oatmeal experience.

Yes, I’ve been having oats for breakfast for years, so there’s nothing special or new in that. Recently though I’ve started using steel-cut oats which are less processed hence better for you than the old-fashioned or rolled oats. But even that is not the most spectacular part of this new oatmeal fix. I had always had to make breakfast in the morning – even if I did some prep work the night before. What blew me away in this recipe is that my breakfast was going to cook itself while I was sleeping. Literally! All I had to do was throw and mix the ingredients in the slow cooker, set it on low, head to bed, and wake up to a homey smell of baked apples and cinnamon. Not only did it smell great, it tasted even better. The porridge was creamy yet retained the distinct texture of steel-cut oats. As I sat down to savour my porridge, all I added to it was some nuts and a spoonful of honey. And, whereas, usually, when I cook porridge on the stovetop, 1 cup of oats yields 2 servings, this time I’ll be able to stretch it into 4 servings!

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Of course, I’m not going to have oats for every breakfast, but when I do, I will let the slow cooker do the work. I’m super-excited to share this new trick with you, and I suggest you, too, stock up on steel-cut oats and start waking up to a warm, delicious breakfast already made.

All you need to know about making apple cinnamon oatmeal is right here.

And if you’re wondering about alternative – non-oatmeal – slow cooker breakfast ideas, have a look here.

Thank you for reading,

Anna

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Ceiling Play up: Exposed Beams

Hello friends!

I could not resist writing a post on exposed beams. I am big fan of warm spaces. Speaking of warm spaces, you will think this only goes with homes with fireplaces. Exposed beams are simply pretty. This look can be versatile, charming, rusty, warm and cozy. A ceiling  could become a great focal point with this ceiling play up. For an industrial, modern or contemporary look, It makes a great statement. Take a look.

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Exposed beams give this space a rustic charm look, see how everything works so nicely together. The space feel airy, collected and charming. From Rilane image

For a light look, consider painting the beams all white. Beams are great architectural feature in this room. From flightofwhimsy

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Exposed beams and grey equate to sophistication in this room. From Decoist image

Warm your space up with exposed wooden ceilings. Oh gosh, this is pretty! From Dwell

Thank you for reading, stay Fancy and come back again.

XOXO

Judith

TGFQ: THANK GOD FOR QUINOA

Hello Fancy Lacy Community,

A few posts ago I bragged about my part-time teaching job that left me the time to do the things I enjoy, such as going to the gym and experimenting in the kitchen. Well, the first week of 2016 was a whole different story. I was called in to sub for a sick teacher; so not only did I continue teaching my evening classes, I was also subbing during the day – working two shifts, so to speak. I had very little time to exercise although I still managed to start my day with a brisk home workout in the mornings. And I had very little time to cook properly. However, I still ate well, all because the mother of all grains – quinoa – came to my rescue.

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Basically, I cooked a whole bunch of plain quinoa (doubled the recipe) and used my creativity to serve it for breakfast, pack it for lunch, and have it again later for dinner. The recipe for making quinoa can be found here. And no, there’s no such thing as too much quinoa, especially if you know of all its health benefits.

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So here goes a day’s worth of quinoa-based meals!

Breakfast

In the morning, I put however much quinoa I needed into a bowl with a splash of almond milk (if you’re into warm spices, such as cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg – it’s the time to add them). I microwaved it until it was nice and hot, and added the desired toppings – my personal favourite are banana and walnuts sweetened with honey. You can also add berries, dates, dried fruit, nut butters, and coconut flakes. In other words, treat it like oatmeal!

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Lunch

Quinoa is a universal side that you can serve with pretty much anything. It goes perfectly with stir-fry, fish, chicken; I especially enjoy having mine with spicy tofu and oriental vegetables. For lunch I had tofu, quinoa and lightly cooked broccoli, dressed with my favourite Sriracha hot sauce. It was a very flavourful and filling meal. There’s no real recipe here, because you cook everything separately but serve together. For healthier tofu, consider baking it in the oven instead of frying – it’s on my to-try list! Here’s a simple way of doing it (I like my tofu spicy so would also season it with just a pinch of cayenne pepper).

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Dinner

I had quinoa for dinner, too. I don’t think I could do it every day for the rest of my life, but I’m certainly happy to have quinoa 2-3 times a week. My evening solution was a warm quinoa salad with broccoli, chickpeas and cranberries. Again, the recipe tells you to cook everything together from the start, but since your quinoa is ready to go, cook broccoli, chickpeas, cumin and salt, and then mix the two together, adding cranberries and lime juice. I like mine warm, so I would microwave it; alternatively, enjoy it as it is!

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Every time, the concept is different, and so is the taste. There are many other ways to use quinoa – for example, to make a cream of broccoli soup and black bean burgers. But all in good time!

If you haven’t yet tried quinoa, it’s time to give it a go. Be adventurous! And if you discover any other quick and easy quinoa recipes, give me a shout!

Thank you for reading,

Anna

Photo source: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5

2015 was exciting, now let’s try to make 2016 Fabulous

Hello lovelies,

What are you grateful for today?

Each year, I sit and set new life goals. Sometimes, I go even further to implement lifestyle’s changes. This year, I suggest for you to add or try something completely different to what you usually set as goals to appreciate your life. We are so busy trying to bring changes into our life that we forget to savour life. The way I look at it, sometimes, life can be unfair.  So, I make an effort to accept this when a situation arises that I can’t pin down an explainable concept for it.

First, start and end your day with a firm positive thought. You see, instead of just pouring all the 100% energy on trying to establish new things in life, I recommend you take also time to invest in gratitude. Gratitude has the power to change the views you have about life. It can be a little bit hard when you start. Trust me, after a couple of tries, the brain will get trained to accept this routine. Putting all the energy you have on future concerns, it will suck life out of you. Instead, focus on appreciating things that you are grateful for. It does not have to be huge, it can be as  small and simple as loving a beautiful weather.

Happily then, stop and learn. I know there are some unpredictable negative life events, however, try to find a positive thought to get you by despise the negative happenings. I truly beleive there is power in positive thoughts and energy. When you only concentrate on what you don’t have , what could of been and feed on your fears, then you will never have enough. Program the mind to let go things beyond your control.

It is never too late to try something new for your well being. As the says goes : ” the happiest people don’t have everything. They make the best of what they have.” Here are some other quotes to help you embrace this concept:

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Thank you for reading,

Judith

Massage fever 

Hello Fancy Lacy community,

There’s a first time for everything!

Earlier this week I went for a deep tissue Swedish massage. It was a Christmas present from my husband, who knows how much I love massages. They are my poison, those massages. Every once in a while I like to treat myself to a hot stone massage, especially when I’ve been subjecting my body to a lot of work, like training for a half marathon and such.

I  really enjoyed my Swedish massage. I felt the pressure was just fine so whenever the therapist asked me if it hurt, I said ‘only a little bit but its fine!”

Well, after the session when the therapist left so I could put my clothes back on, I suddenly felt nauseous and light headed, like I was about to pass out. The last time I felt like that was in 2013 after my first ever Queen City half marathon when I thought I was going to die.

I’m used to feeling great after a massage, not nauseous and chilly and light headed. It was awful! The therapist offered me water and I felt a little bit better after drinking it but the awful feeling lasted into the day. It wasn’t until much later in the evening that I felt I could risk eating something without the possibility of hurling.

I’d read about how deep tissue massages can release toxins and damaged blood cells into the blood stream, which can poison the body but I knew this theory to be deeply flawed. I don’t think that’s what happened.

And everyone who runs has probably been warned by their doctors about rhapdbomyiolisis, a condition in which extreme exertion can cause severe muscle tissue breakdown enough to damage the kidneys and lead to symptoms way more severe than what I experienced after my massage. But this condition is so rare that its nearly impossible to happened to marathoners. From what I’ve read in an old kinesiology textbook, it’s more likely to be caused by traumatic accidents, extensive burns to the body and electrical shock.

So I still don’t know what happened to me during that massage. Right now I’m leaning toward the the idea that the nausea and malaise were brought on by the fact that I skimped out on breakfast to rush my daughter to school because we woke up late. I’d had a coffee at some point but when I had the massage at 1pm, I hadn’t had a chance have lunch either. My uneducated guess is that somehow my body hit the wall due to dwindling glucose levels.

Has anybody out there ever had the same thing happen to them after a massage? Care to share your experience?

’till next time!

Iryn

INSPIRATIONS FOR A HAPPIER 2016

Dear Fancy Lacy Community,

I would like to wish you a very Happy New Year.

For those of you who had a super-mega-fantastic 2015, I hope the coming year will still beat the record.

And for those who struggled more so than flourished, I pray that 2016 will compensate you generously.

We will shortly be embarking on a 366-day journey through seasons, birthdays and anniversaries, graduations and promotions, and many other exciting (and not) moments that make our lives unique and special. Remember – this year we have an extra day to make a difference! Appreciate it, and embrace it!

As I’m getting ready for the new start, here is what resolutions are shaping in my mind:

  1. Appreciate and maintain your health. It’s the one thing that physically enables you to go after your goals and dreams.30ee926f55d2f9b07c49b82bcd4fe8bd
  2. See your health as a combination of healthy diet and active lifestyle. Eat more whole, nourishing foods and exercise regularly. Both habits are so rewarding!
  3. Surround yourself with positive people. We become like the people we are around most, and I choose optimism and enthusiasm over negative thinking!
  4. Learn to feel good about the quiet time. Every now and then, it’s okay to not fill every minute of your time with chores. Take time off screens; learn to relax in silence and stillness.
  5. Aspire to growth. Learn ways to get better at what you do. There’s no limit to enlightenment and education.intellectual-growth-should-commence-at-birth-and-cease-only-at-death-quote-1
  6. Enjoy what you do. Love your work, and if you don’t – consider alternative options. Life’s too short to waste a third of it on something you find no satisfaction in doing.
  7. Learn to cope with stress. Stress is inevitable, so have coping strategies prepared.
  8. Try new things. Go into a “Yes-Man” mode from time to time, you never know what’s waiting to happen. It may end up being the best time of your life.Untitled
  9. Be kind and patient. Both make us human. Both have the potential to make a difference.
  10. Remember what’s important. Decide on your priorities and act accordingly.new-year-wallpaper-hd

Until next year!

Thank you for reading,

Anna

Photo source: 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6