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Last Dip of the Summer September 10 2018, 0 Comments

Blue Pools

Summer is almost over, even though the temperature is so high it does not feel like the summer is leaving us anytime soon.  However, it's the concept of summer and that vacation time is over.  The feeling that summer has come to an end, has made me longing for a dip in one of these beautiful pools. 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pinterest) 


ecru's Soundtrack, Velvet Underground + Nico's Femme Fatale August 13 2018, 0 Comments

The music of the Sixties is very inspiring to us.  One of the bands we absolutely love is the Andy Warhol managed Velvet Underground + Nico.  Here's Femme Fatale to set the mood... 


Mermaid Baths July 04 2018, 0 Comments

Mermaid Bath

Mermaid Bath 1

Mermaid Bath 2

I recently stumbled on these images of these fantastic bathrooms.  They belong in a magical world, under the sea.  

Hussah 

(Images courtesy of Pinterest) 

 


Summer Wishlist June 13 2018, 0 Comments

Summer Wishlist
The dream of a beach vacation, preferably on a Mediterranean island, is still ongoing.  Here are a few items I would pack with me on this lovely holiday...
 
Hussah

Ongoing Love of Palms May 31 2018, 0 Comments

Palms

There is an ongoing love relationship of palms and palm leaves here at ecru.  They are always a point of inspiration.  A personal favorite product inspired by the topical palm is the latest embroidered Palm Place Mat.    

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pinterest) 


Barragán Pop March 05 2018, 0 Comments

Luis Barragan

I recently stumbled on Luis Barragán's house on the internet and was quite mesmerized by it.  The Mexican architect and engineer was influenced by Le Corbusier and European Modernism.  His buildings are an ode to the modernist movement.  Clearly, his beautiful house is also an ode to the simple lines of modernism.  

Luis Barragan

Louis Barragan

Luis Barragan

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Google Images) 


Bewitched October 10 2017, 0 Comments

Bewitched

Halloween is around the corner!  The excitement of finding or creating a costume is already upon us.  As an avid fan of old movies and old Hollywood, I went on a search for vintage costumes and stumbled on these retro witches. What's better than a glamorous witch? 

Hussah  

(Images courtesy of Pinterest) 


Noor & Nur Share Their Hosting Tips May 30 2017, 0 Comments

At our latest launch of our "La Lune" Collection, Nouriah Al Shatti passed by to ask both Noor and Nur about their go to hosting tips for Vogue Arabia.  They set up a couple of table layouts for the magazine to get a feel of the mood they usually have when they host.  The full article and photoshoot can be found here.   

(Images courtesy of ecru)


The Down Under Guide March 15 2017, 1 Comment

Traveling to somewhere new is always exciting.  Last month I got to go to Australia for the first time and it was absolutely amazing.  I went to Melbourne, Tasmania, Sydney, and some places in between.  Here's a little guide of what you should check out and eat while you're there.  Make sure you pack a P. Le Moult Smoking Jacket perfect for breezy summer nights.   

Melbourne

Sight Seeing: 

The National Gallary of Victoria 

The Royal Botanical Gardens

Shopping:

Fitzroy is an inner city of Melbourne which is a great place to grab a meal and shop for local brands or vintage shops.  Walking there and back is a great way to see everything that this alternative neighborhood has to offer. 

Food: 

Kappo - Amazing five or eight-course Japanese meal

Tipo 00 - Fresh pasta bar

South Melbourne Night Market

Drive To:

Make sure you take the 2 hour Great Ocean Road drive and stop for a picnic at Wye River and pick up delicious snacks from their General Store.  

Tasmania

Sight Seeing:

Freycinet National Park

Mona: Museum of Old and New Art is a very impressive museum in Hobart.  It also has amazing pavilions you can stay at with fantastic service.  

Food: 

Franklin 

Sydney

Sights:

Sydney Opera House 

Royal Botanical Garden - It's next to the Sydney Harbour which is great to walk around and have a meal by the sea.  

Food: 

Gilders KS - Perfect spot for breakfast

Mr. Wong - Best pecking duck

Nomad - Quintessential Australian farm to table restaurant

Drive to: 

Bondi beach and make sure to walk all the way to Bronte beach to swim in the natural rock pool.  On your way back to Bondi, stop by Bondi Icebergs Club for the best beach lunch.    

Hussah 

(Images courtesy of Hussah Al Tamimi)

 


Jet Setting With Henry Clarke January 31 2017, 0 Comments

Specific images when seen immediately take you away to somewhere exotic.  Henry Clarke's images he took for Vogue during the 1950's in different locations evoke these feelings.  Clarke started his career as a window dresser in San Fransisco, then he moved to New York to become an accessories assistant at Vogue.  He witnessed the changing face of fashion during the postwar era.  During Diana Vreeland's reign at vogue, Henry became one of the main photographers of the magazine.  As she made more exotic locations accessible, he started photographing features for the magazine that at times were 20 pages.  He continued his career in British, American, and French Vogue until the late 70's.

Hussah

(Images courtesy Pintrest and Henry Clarke)


ecru Eats Pantry Bee January 16 2017, 0 Comments

I love to cook, but I get too busy to actually do it.  Pantry Bee solves this problem for you by sending you a box filled with delicious ingredients and an easy recipe to follow.  I've tested 4 of the recipes and loved them all.  It takes less than an hour to make any of their recipes.  Here is one of their latest recipes, Lemon Caper Tilapia, made and served on our tableware.  

(Images courtesy of Pantry Bee) 

Hussah


Accessorizing Your Home November 23 2016, 0 Comments

Putting art and photos up in your space is just like accessorizing your outfit.  It can be bold, eclectic, or modern depending on your personality.  My favorite walls are the ones that have different sizes, colors, textures, and objects. However, sleek and uniform walls can also add an elegance to a space.  Whether you like to pile on necklaces or just emphasize your statement earrings, the same can be done to your walls.  

(Images courtesy of Pintrest)

Hussah


Globe Trotting Doris November 14 2016, 0 Comments

Doris Duke

I recently watched a movie about the tobacco heiress Doris Duke.  What fascinated me about Doris' life, is her passion for Islamic and Oriental artifacts.  Her house in Hawaii which was dedicated to the arts, which will be the subject of another post.  Besides her obsession with collectibles, she had a unique and quite forward sense of style.  From her days as a debutante to her later years in philanthropy, she always looked impeccable. Her interesting life is definitely worth reading about.   

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest) 


Take Me to the Grove, The Coconut Grove November 05 2014, 0 Comments

Glitz, glamour, and a club filled with palms! That was the Coconut Grove Club of the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angles.  In it’s heyday, from the 1920s to the 1960s, it was frequented by Hollywood’s who’s who of the time. 

The Coconut Grove club opened in 1921.  At the beginning it was too small to fit the country club crowd and the wilder Hollywood crowd, so it converted to a thousand seat club.  The LA hot spot was born with many fabulous parties.  

What's not to love about a dinner club with papier mache palm trees, high ceilings lit with stars, and the biggest and best jazz bands playing music.

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Google Images)

 


Bananas! October 13 2014, 0 Comments

One of the most exciting things about ecru is seeing how the inspiration turns into a product.  It usually starts with coming up with a concept of the collection, in this case, Take Me to the Tropics.  Inspiration for the Banana print came from vintage encyclopedia prints and images of tropical fruit stands.  These images shaped the design of the Banana print that  turned into our bright table linens.

Hussah

Banana Napkins can be found here

(Images courtesy of Pintrest and ecru)


In the Navy September 15 2014, 0 Comments

Different shades of blue have been applied before in ecru, but not the chicest of the bunch.  Navy has an elegant feel when used, and we chose to use it in our pomegranate print.  Unlike it's fun pink counterpart, the pomegranate in this shade sets a more grown up feel on the dinner table.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of ecru and Pintrest)


Robert Capa's Colorful Exotic September 03 2014, 0 Comments

Sometimes finding an image can completely uplift your mood.  That's what happened to me when I recently discovered Robert Capa's unpublished colored photography.  Robert is known as the "quintessential photojournalist".  He would photograph both in black and white and color to set different moods. His colored images sold for more at magazines than his black and white photos because they were more exotic.   The shots might depict simple past times, but they strike do a chord. 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest and Time) 


Fresh and Crisp August 25 2014, 0 Comments

The best thing about a salad is the mixture of textures and tastes in a bowl.  You will get a mix of crisp vegetables with a little, a little tang from some lemon dressing, and sometimes a little sweet surprise.  This Avocado Cup Salad with Black Bean Confetti is a fresh and easy way to have a delicious snack.

Makes 8 mini-salad cups; estimate 2 halves or 1 full avocado per person/meal

1 cup black beans, cooked, drained (about 2/3 of a 15-ounce can)
1 large bell pepper, finely diced 
1/4 cup finely diced white or red onion
1 small jalapeno, seeded and minced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 1 lime)
1/4 teaspoon coarse salt, plus more to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Dashes of hot sauce or pinches of cayenne, to taste
Chopped cilantro for garnish
4 ripe avocados

Mix black beans, pepper, onion and jalapeno in a medium bowl. In a small dish, whisk olive oil, lime juice, salt, cumin and hot sauce or cayenne. Adjust dressing seasonings to taste. Halve avocados and remove pits. Score avocado halves with a knife, cutting lines in both directions to form a grid, but being careful not to through the skin.

If you’re serving all four avocados right away, go ahead and mix the dressing and salad ingredients together, then heap each avocado half with salad and dressing and garnish with cilantro. If you’d like to stretch this over several days of lunches or the like, keep the mixed salad ingredients and dressing in separate dishes. When you’re ready to eat, cut and score your avocado, dot a little dressing directly on each half, heap with salad filling and drizzle with more dressing. Garnish with cilantro. 

Hussah

(Recipe courtesy of Smitten Kitchen)

Fish Plate and Crab Napkin available online


Capri Sun August 04 2014, 0 Comments

I’ve visited many places that have enchanted me, and it’s a great feeling falling in love with a location.  Last week it happened to me all over again when I visited Capri.  Everything about this tiny Italian island was wonderful: the food, the people, the weather, the cliffs, and the sea.  Especially the sea…

Sophia 203 for ecru Moon Palm Pouch resting on the cliffs of Capri.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of ecru)

 

 

 

 


ecru's Soundtrack, Marilyn Monroe's Heat Wave July 16 2014, 0 Comments

It's sweltering outside and we are definitely experiencing a heat wave, an extended one.  If that's the case, we don't mind Marilyn's tropical "Heat Wave".   

Hussah


Put the Lime in the Coconut July 14 2014, 0 Comments

With these long summer days I just want to drink something cold, refreshing, and sweet.  A coconut and lime slushy sounds like the right fix to have.  This Coconut Frozen Limeade recipe does the trick, and it’s the perfect mix of sweet coconut and sour limes.  

Makes 4 Servings 

Ingredients 

2 1/2 cups crushed or small ice cubes

1 cup coconut milk, well-shaken if from a can

1/3 cup lime juice (from about 3 limes)

3 tablespoons granulated or superfine sugar (more or less to taste)

Lime slices for garnish

Directions

Blend every thing until it reaches your desired consistency — almost smooth, for a crunchier effect, or fully smooth, for a milkshake/creamier effect. Pour into glasses, garnish with lime.

 

Hussah

(Recipe courtesy of Smitten Kitchen

 Trumpet Glass and Barracuda Placemat available online.    

 

 


Bohemian Rhapsody July 09 2014, 0 Comments

As Ramadan has come in the midst of summer this year, it makes it easy to wear caftans on these warm nights.  There's something both easy and glamorous about a caftan.  Slipping on one immediately makes you feel luxurious as you channel your favorite bohemian chic muse in a second. 

Images from Vogue and Harper's Bazaar in the late 1960's and early 1970's  embody this mood.  Beautiful models photographed in exotic locations, wearing wonderful caftans and accessorized to the max.   And when I head out to my next ghabaga in my favorite caftan, I will make sure to emulate one of these fabulous ladies.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Harper's Bazaar and Vogue)


ecru's Soundtrack, Tamba Trio's Mas Que Nada June 24 2014, 0 Comments

Everyone's eyes are on Brazil at the moment, but we've been dreaming of Rio for a while now.  So a little samba has been playing in the background lately, especially Tamaba Trio's "Mas Que Nada".  

Hussah 

P.S. Don't forget about our Table Setting Competition, more information in the link here.  


Ocean Blues June 04 2014, 0 Comments

It’s no surprise that we are so moved by the ocean and it’s creatures at ecru.  This season our ode to the sea is our barracuda print.  With three different shades of blue stripes, it is reminiscent of the different colors of the ocean as it reflects the sky.  There is nothing more calming than losing yourself in the endless ocean horizon. 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of ecru and Pintrest) 


Fly Me Down To Rio May 14 2014, 0 Comments

Sometimes not only do we want to escape to a far away exotic destination, but we want to time travel to a specific time in that particular place. That’s how we feel about Rio. Don’t get us wrong we’d love to get the chance to catch the next plane to Rio, yet we would have loved to go there in the 1950's and 1960's. Whether it be travel posters or images of Impanema beach, we cannot stop dreaming of vintage Rio.

\

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest, Frank Horvat, Milan Alram, andRio+Vintage)


A Bright Home April 02 2014, 0 Comments

Every once in a while you come across a house that you fantasize about living in.  A bright colorful home in the middle of a tropical paradise.  All these qualities are in Adam McCulloch and Emma Sloley’s Yucatan retreat.  The design of the house utilizes the space with glass curtains as walls, to mix the beautiful outdoor garden indoors.  With bright walls and the use of space, we cannot help dreaming of moving to the Caribbean and having a home in the tropics.

Hussah
(Images courtesy of the New York Times

Witty Naturalism: Louise Dahl-Wolfe March 05 2014, 0 Comments

Louise Dahl-Wolfe introduced a kind of naturalism to fashion photography that was not popular at her time.   Joining Harper's Bazaar in  1936 she characterized the magazine for two decades by contributing 86 covers.  Working as a freelance photography under Diana Vreeland, Dahl-Wolfe enjoyed a great amount of artistic freedom.  Taken over fifty years ago, Louise's witty images have a timelessness that feels fresh and modern today.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Louise Dahl-Wolfe for Harper's Bazaar) 

 

 

 

 

 


Bananas for Bananas! February 17 2014, 0 Comments

You rarely meet someone who doesn't like a banana.  They are one of these fruits that everyone loves, and especially if they are in a sweet treat.  We've been working on several banana prints for spring and couldn't help craving this delicious Roasted Banana, Chocolate, and Coconut bread.

 

INGREDIENTS

4 bananas

2 tablespoons honey

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 1/4 cups white whole wheat flour or whole wheat pastry flour

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 eggs

1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar

1/2 cup canned coconut milk (may swap butter milk or greek yogurt)

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted (or swap canola oil)

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 ounces dark chocolate, chopped (use more or less to your liking)

1/2 cup toasted coconut flakes (optional)

2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut flakes (optional)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silpat. Peel the bananas and lay them flat on the baking sheet. Drizzle each banana with a drizzle of honey and then sprinkle with cinnamon. Roast them for 20-25 minutes or until the tops of the bananas are very golden brown and caramelized. Remove from the oven and let cool 5 minutes. Once cool enough to handle, mash the bananas and set aside. Reduce the oven temp to 350 degrees F.

Spray a 9x5 loaf pan thoroughly with nonstick spray. In a small bowl, combine the white whole wheat flour (or whole wheat pastry flour), all-purpose flour, baking soda and salt, whisking thoroughly. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs and brown sugar until smooth. Add in coconut milk and canola oil, whisking until combined. Stir in mashed bananas and vanilla until mixed. Slowly stir in dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Fold in the chopped chocolate and toasted coconut. Pour batter into the greased loaf pan and sprinkle with the remaining unsweetened coconut flakes.

Place loaf pan on a baking sheet and set in the oven. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until center is set. If the top begins to brown (mine did after about 45 minutes), tent the bread with aluminum foil.

Remove and let cool for at least 30 minutes before cutting. Bread will keep (covered) for 3-5 days.

 

Hussah

(Image and recipe of Banana Loaf courtesy of Half Baked Harvest)

 


Hot For Pink February 12 2014, 0 Comments

Valentine's day is so close, we can't help being in a romantic mood...Red might be color of passion, but hot pink can be just as sensual.   Bolder than the other shades of pink, hot pink is playful and we love using it whenever we can in our products.  And it is quite hard to avoid pink during production, as it is "the navy blue  of India". 

Sophia 203 for ecru Charms and Pouches available at our boutique at AlOthman.

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest)

 

 

 


Joie De Vivre by Malick Sidibe February 05 2014, 0 Comments

"It's a world, someone's face. When I capture it, I see the future of the world. I believe with my heart and soul in the power of the image."  Malick Sidibe, the Malian photographer, is able to capture the cheerful emotions of his subjects in an image.  There is always a sense the people he is photographing are having a good time.   

Sidibe started his photography career in 1955 when he took an apprenticeship at Gerard Guillat-Gugnards Photo Service Boutique, but in 1962 he left and opened his own studio.  He took photographs of local weddings, Christenings, and dances.  His studio had a relaxed atmosphere, and his subjects were always proud of posing in their latest "Paris style".  

Malick's black and white images, he still refuses to use color film or digital cameras, express the ultimate joie de vivre.  

 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of New York Times and Malick Sidibe) 

 

 


Shakshooka and ecru January 13 2014, 0 Comments

Last Thursday night we were happy to collaborate with Shakshooka market and host them at AlOthman.  Shakshooka is a nomadic farmers market in Kuwait that moves to a different location every Thursday.  Food enthusiasts from around the country sell products that include organic produce, artisanal baked goods, salsas and dips, caramels, and a variety of healthy products to fit anyone's diet. 

Since we have a huge appreciation for fresh and delicious food at ecru, we felt a collaboration with Shakshooka would a be a suitable fit.  We can’t wait for what this Pop-Up market has to offer the rest of the year.  

ecru team

(Images courtesy of ecru)


The Perfect Bath December 16 2013, 0 Comments

Taking a bath can be quite indulgent, especially after a long tiresome day.  To draw the perfect bath, you have to make sure the water is the right lukewarm temperature and it has the right amount of bubbles.   Once you are done and completely relaxed, and made sure you haven’t dissolved in the water “like a lump of sugar” you can wrap yourself in a soft towel or a cosy bathrobe.  

Hussah 

(Images courtesy of Pintrest)

 

 

 



Roaring Fireplace December 11 2013, 0 Comments

The temperature has dropped and the weather has become dramatically colder.   Which means it’s time to cozy up indoors with hot coco or some chai in front of the fire. 

There’s something endearing about a fireplace.   You get to enjoy the heat indoors with the family, cuddling under a quilt.   Here are some beautiful fireplaces, both modern and rustic, that capture the  perfect winter mood. 

Hussah

(Images via Pintrest and Elle Decor)

 


Horst P. Horst, the Regular Avant-Garde September 02 2013, 0 Comments

 

“I like taking photographs, because I like life.  And I love photographing people best of all, because most of all I love humanity.”  

During Horst P. Horst’s sixty year spanning career he was able to capture images of elegance, style, and glamour but always by filling them with life.  Horst’s career started in Paris with French Vogue in the 1930s and soon after he moved to American Vogue.

His famous images are from the magazine during the interwar period, when he was highly influenced by many of his friends in the art world.  He “tamed the avant-garde to serve fashion.”  Horst’s summer covers for American Vogue show this playful artistic aesthetic that took something regular, such as putting on lipstick, by making it fantastic.

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Vogue)

 

 

 

 


Under the Sea at the Festes de Gràcia August 21 2013, 0 Comments

Recently on my trip to Barcelona I had the chance to attend the Gràcia Festival.  Gràcia is a district in the city that celebrates the eight day “Festa major”, or more popularly known “Festes de Gràcia”, every August.  The neighborhood over goes a magical transformation during these eight days.  Residents of each street decorate their area in a particular theme to compete for the best decorated street prize.  

While visiting Gràcia, I was pleasantly overwhelmed by the Verdi Street decorations.  It was an under the sea theme decorated by beautiful paper-mache sculptures, luminescent fish, and paper garlands.  Here are some images of the amazing transformation Verdi went through for this year’s festival.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Hussah Al Tamimi) 


The Heart of the Home August 07 2013, 0 Comments

All the energy of the house is dictated by what is happening in the kitchen.  Sometimes people forgo the comfort of a couch when visiting friends to hover around the host while they are preparing a meal.  The best kitchens are the rustic ones that make you feel you are inside “the heart of the home”.  

 

We love kitchens here at ecru, because it’s where all our meals are being made.  Especially when  a cake is being baked in the oven and the whole house smells divine.

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest


Nina Leen Finding Beauty In The Ordinary July 31 2013, 1 Comment

Nina Leen enjoyed photographing everything, but she had a special way of making the mundane look interesting.  Her subjects included her dog, different species of animals, American women and adolescents, and abstract artists.  

The Russian photographer lived in Germany, Italy, and Switzerland before she moved to the United States in the 1940s to became one of the first female photographers for Life Magazine.  Leen ended up shooting 50 cover stories for the publication.

Her series of photographs for Life Magazine focused on her fascination with everyday pedestrian life in America.  Leen was known for making her subjects feel comfortable, and that’s why her images of “regular” women have a certain ease to them.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Life Magazine & Pintrest) 


Fresh Fish July 29 2013, 0 Comments

Light and refreshing food is all we can think of in the midst of summer.  Grilled fish is a favorite meal of ours, and it's a great way to fill up and still feel light.  The best way to satisfy our fish craving is by having these Grilled Fish Tacos.  We do love our fish.  

 

4 Servings

Ingredients 

4 halibut fillets (5 ounces each), skin removed

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Coarse salt and ground pepper

12 corn tortillas

2 cups finely shredded green cabbage

4 radishes, thinly sliced

1 cup fresh cilantro

3 scallions, thinly sliced

1/2 cup 2 percent Greek yogurt

1 lime, cut into wedges

Directions

Rub fillets with olive oil and season both sides with salt and pepper. Heat a grill pan over medium-high heat. Grill fish, flipping once, until cooked through, about 4 minutes per side. Flake fish into large pieces, discarding any bones.

Toast corn tortillas over a kitchen burner using tongs or wrap in parchment-lined foil and heat in oven, 5 minutes. Divide fish evenly among tortillas and top with cabbage, radishes, cilantro, and scallions. Season with salt. Serve with yogurt and lime wedges.

 

Hussah 

(Recipe and Image of Tacos courtesy of Whole Living)


Surreal Minimalism July 22 2013, 0 Comments

“A house like me” is the description Curzio Malaparte used to describe the house he built for himself, with the help of Adolfo Amitrano, on a remote cliff in Capri.  Cruzio decided to build Casa Malaparte in seclusion after his return from exile, because he wanted more privacy.   

The red masonry box of a house is on a cliff thirty two meters above the sea overlooking the beautiful Gulf of Salerno.  What makes this minimalist house so surreal, is how the house has become part of the nature that surrounds it.  

Casa Malaparte became famous in 1963 when Jean- Luc Godard shot his film “Contempt”.  Today the house can be accessed by sea or through the steep stairs.  Once reaching the house, many visitors are overwhelmed by the location and are mesmerized by its "dream-like" quality.  

Hussah 

(Images courtesy of Architectural Digest, Google Images, Miss Moss, and Travel Modus) 


Ramadan Kareem July 10 2013, 0 Comments

Best wishes,

ecru Team


Claire McCardell's Form and Function July 03 2013, 0 Comments

Beautiful design always catches the eye, but when there is functionality to a dress you feel a stronger bond to the piece.  Claire McCardell was famous for her sophisticated and functionally designed clothes, which was a reflection of American women’s needs in the 1940s and 1950s.  

Considered to be the founder of American ready-to-wear fashion, McCardell felt it was necessary to make clothes both comfortable and feminine.  She felt that a woman when comfortable in what she wore can be quite elegant, and stated “clothes may make the woman, but the woman can also make the clothes.”  

Her design aesthetic of “casual elegance” is one of our mottos here at ecru, because life is all about the simple luxuries.  

 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest) 


ecru's Soundtrack, Frank Sinatra's Come Fly With Me June 26 2013, 0 Comments

Summer has arrived in full force, which means it’s time to escape the heat.  Franks Sinatra’s ‘Come Fly With Me’ is the perfect song to listen to as everyone is packing their bags and jetting off to different corners of the world.  

 

Enjoy your summer getaway,  

Hussah


Sweet and Tart June 03 2013, 0 Comments

 

What’s not to love about pineapples?  They have an interesting shape, they remind us of the tropics, and most importantly they are so sweet and tart.  Since pineapples are still in season, why not try a healthy and yummy Pineapple - Red Quinoa Parfait for breakfast.  It will add a sweet tropical twist to your day.  

 

Makes 1 Serving

Ingredients

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

6 ounces plain fat-free Greek or soy yogurt, preferably organic

1 cup fresh pineapple, cut into chunks

1/2 cup cooked red quinoa, chilled

2 tablespoons sliced almonds

Directions

Fold cinnamon into yogurt. 

In a dish, alternately layer pineapple, quinoa, and yogurt; garnish with almonds and serve.

 

Hussah

Pineapple Cocktail Napkins sold as a set of four. 

(Recipe and parfait image courtesy of Whole Living)


Take A Dip May 29 2013, 0 Comments

Swimming in the sea is exhilarating especially the feeling of salt all over your body after a dip.  However, sometimes you need to balance out the invigorating energy of the sea by dipping into a nice cool pool afterwards.  

Swimming pools create a certain serenity in the home and add the perfect element to a garden.  As the temperature is rising we have been inspired by beautifully designed pools and the spaces that surround them.

These pools not only make you want to take a nice relaxing swim, they also invite you to unwind with friends as you lounge by the pool...    

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest and Architectual Digest) 

 


John Rawlings' Beauty of Naturalness May 13 2013, 0 Comments

“I want to make beautiful pictures, pictures that tell a story, catch a mood”, and that is exactly what a John Rawlings’ photograph does.  

John Rawlings is a fashion photographer who became famous for his pictures published for Condé Nast from the 1930s to the 1960s.  The beauty of his images is that they sell the lifestyle that goes with the dress.  He started his career as a display artist and caught the eye of Condé Nast through his candid photographs of Saks Fifth Avenue Shoppers.  Rawlings took many glamorous images of beautiful people in beautiful clothing, however, he always created a certain ease in his images. 

It’s his photographs of resort wear for magazines such as Vogue and Glamour that we are particularly  interested in.  John made sure that the women he was shooting looked effortlessly stylish lounging around in their bathing suits. 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Vogue, Conde Nast, Glamour, and Pintrest) 


Season Of The Crab May 08 2013, 0 Comments

We like to keep it light during the summer, especially with our food.  With all the beautiful produce available at the markets all we want to do is eat fresh salads.  And since you know we love our crabs, we definitely want to add some fresh crab meat to the mix.  Here’s a delicious Crab, Mango, and Avocado Salad to snack  on while you spend your afternoon at the pool. Enjoy!

Makes 4 Servings 

Ingredients

3 tablespoons orange juice

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

1 tablespoon honey

1 teaspoon grated orange peel

3 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 red onion, sliced paper-thin

1 pound fresh lump crabmeat, picked over, separated into chunks

1 large mango, peeled, pitted, sliced

1 large avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, sliced

12 large Boston lettuce leaves

Preparation

Combine first 4 ingredients in small bowl; whisk in oil. Season dressing with salt and pepper. Mix in onion; let marinate 15 minutes.

Combine crabmeat, mango, and avocado in large bowl. Gently mix in dressing. Overlap ends of 3 lettuce leaves in center of each plate, forming bowl. Mound salad in lettuce bowls and serve.

(Recipe and salad image courtesy of Bon Appetit


Palm Trees, Ocean Breeze May 06 2013, 0 Comments

Growing up in the Middle East, especially in Kuwait, you cannot but help feeling a certain connection to palm trees.  They evoke a sense of hospitality, rest, and abundance.  

When summer comes along you eagerly await the date season when you can eat them ripe off of the tree.  It’s not only the date palm that has a special place in our heart, but also the coconut palm that awakens our desire to escape to a secluded beach.  

ecru created the palm print to bring you a welcoming sense of serenity.  So why not enjoy some fresh dates and coconut water this summer while relaxing on our palm cushions.  

 

Hussah 

(Images courtesy of Pintrest, Ruby Lane, & ecru)


The Big Reveal April 30 2013, 0 Comments

We finally got the chance to introduce you to our world, last week, at the launch of the ecru’s Pop-Up shop at Dar Al-Funoon.  It wouldn’t have been a success without all of your amazing support. Our aim is to make sure you are constantly enjoying the simple luxuries of your home.  

We hope you love it, just as much as we love creating it.

xx,

Noor & Nur

(Video courtesy of Saud Al-Khateib for ecru)


ecru's Pop Up Launch April 16 2013, 0 Comments

 

 

Please join us at the launch of ecru. We hope you love it, just as much as we love creating it. 

ecru 


A Little More Juice April 15 2013, 1 Comment

If our behind the scenes photos from last week didn't quench your thirst, here's a little teaser video of 'When Life Gives You Lemons'.  Stay tuned for the full noon collection at the ecru Pop-Up Shop launching next week. 

ecru 


Just A Squeeze Of Lemon April 10 2013, 0 Comments

Here’s a little sneak behind the scenes of the magical noon for ecru ‘When Life Gives You Lemons’ shoot. Stay tuned for the final juice.

ecru 


Havana Dreams April 08 2013, 1 Comment

Havana is a destination that is on top of our list for a fantasy trip.  Who wouldn’t want to visit a city suspended in mid-century design?  

We dream of walking through it’s narrow alleyways under its hanging balconies, then heading to the beach in a vintage car, and ending our nights dancing away to salsa beats.  You can see why we would want to jet away to Cuba, but in the meantime we can only immerse ourselves with beautiful imagery of this mesmerizing city.  

Hussah 

(Images courtesy of Pintrest and the Web) 

 


Holi Post Better Late Than Never April 03 2013, 0 Comments

I can safely say, for those who manufacture in India, Holi is that time of year when you constantly cringe, knowing all your deadlines are due, and that absolutely nothing will get done. 

Because the first thing that happens when Holi approaches is that although everyone can speak of nothing else, the actual date that Holi falls on can not be pin pointed. 

'Some time around the 20th till the 29th, it's definitely one of those days'.  

The pre warning begins around two weeks in advance, 'Don't forget, it's HOLI, every one is returning to their village, all work will stop!' Whether they are going 1 week before or staying a week later also depends on when the date falls.

Frustration builds and you find yourself detesting absolutely everyone. 

From the happy tourists who arrive wearing the predictable white kurta pyjama, flip flops and huge Canon cameras complete with the wide angle lens, which you know isn't going to make it through the colorful, chaotic and highly wet festival of Holi. 

To your friends who smugly inform you of their elaborate Holi holiday plans that they've pre organized as not to endure the stress of watching their production being abandoned.

I'm never that organized. 

This year, although Holi was bumpy, manufacturing wise, I must say I was quite excited. 

A friend explained the mythological history of Holi, and like most holidays that fall around this time of year, it has to do with harvesting and the reformation of crops. 

It has developed into the festival of color, where everyone is basically intoxicated from the morning's start. The protocol is to dress in white, leave the house armed with water guns or buckets, and pigments which you have purchased the night before. 

Grandmothers, children, milk vendors, everyone comes out and goes completely wild. By the time you reach where ever it is that you are going to play Holi, you have probably been completely sprayed by a rainbow of colors on the street and are soaking wet.

It's a completely surreal feeling, and what is even better is that you can physically feel all tension and stress left behind as everyone runs frantically, spraying each other with water so the fluorescent pigments stick. Strangers roar at each other and join forces to gang up on others. I have no other way to describe it but surreal. 

By the end of the day, nothing makes sense. Everyone is an intoxicated blur of color and is completely worn out, but extremely happy and relaxed.

Generally life resumes to normal the day after Holi, at least with those who have returned from their villages. And it's an amazing feeling to try to keep a straight face and actually talk work while everyone, including yourself, has remnants of faint Holi stains that refuse to scrub off or green hair that will need a few more washes to resume it's natural color. 

Life is some how put into perspective, seriousness and stress are replaced by absurdity and foolishness. And it feels so good.  

Nur

(Images courtesy of ecru & Juliette Dumerchat)


ecru Soundtrack, Carmen Miranda's I Like You Very Much April 01 2013, 0 Comments

We can never get enough of Carmen Miranda’s upbeat energy and music.  Her songs, especially ‘I Like You Very Much’, inspire us so much that she became the muse for our ‘Carmen’ range. 


Hussah


Take Me Away March 27 2013, 0 Comments

 

It’s that time of year again, when you start fantasizing about which beach destination will be the location of your great escape for the summer.  It’s quite easy these days to plan a vacation on the internet, as the whole world is at our fingertips.  Yet I dream of a time when I could walk into the travel agent’s office, and my vacation would be solely inspired by the bright graphic travel posters hung on the walls. 

What makes these vintage posters so special, is that they evoke the feeling and sensation of a particular place.  Looking at these images makes me want to pack my ecru pareo sarong and jet away to an exotic tropical destination.  

 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Pintrest)


Artichoke, Baby March 11 2013, 0 Comments

When spring blooms, it means fresh possibilities are around every corner.  Other than the excitement of warmer weather that is affiliated with the season, there is the endless range of delicious produce.  

A favorite spring vegetable of ours is the artichoke, and what’s not to love about an artichoke.  It’s hard exterior when peeled leaf by leaf exposes a soft and scrumptious heart.  One of our signature prints at ecru is baby artichokes. So while you wait for our launch, why don’t you eat up some to satisfy your craving. 

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Basquiat, Laurie Frankel, Slate, Snippet & Ink, and ecru) 


Dressing Up A Room March 06 2013, 0 Comments

Decorating a space is similar to dressing up.  You either start from an individual piece and work around it, or choose a color palette and decorate according to the colors you have in mind.  

We are constantly fed images of extremely stylish people doing regular, or extra-regular, activities. Photographers behind street style blogs are a major part of ecru’s mood boards. The way people dress today is eclectic and stimulating.  You either see someone clashing prints or going monochrome from head to toe.  It's the same way with decorating, you either you clash pieces and fabrics or choose to stick to a certain color scheme.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Garance Dore, The Sartorialist, Jak & Jil, and All The Pretty Birds) 


Dhurrie Weaving March 04 2013, 1 Comment

I hadn't been in India a very long time before I was sent on a dhurrie mission. My charismatic boss Munnu Kasliwal, who was a firm believer in perfecting tradition, sent me to create a series of dhurries for the floors of his new store. 

For those of you unfamiliar with it's traditional name, a dhurrie is a hand woven carpet, traditional to India and can be made of cotton, wool, jute or silk. It is however; more commonly made in cotton and is known to cool your house in the summer, and warm it in the winter. 

I had no idea what to expect as I was on my way to the factory. I drove miles outside of Jaipur, listening to my iPod for about an hour, happy to be out of the office and into the country.  The driver off roaded for a while before we arrived at what looked like a farm dotted in what appeared to be multicolored bridges. 

It was an incredible site. 

I was in front of a field of pit looms where weavers sit in seats made into the earth, with their feet dangling in pits under oversized looms, using both their hands and feet to weave. 

I felt that I had entered into a world that time had forgotten. There wasn't a machine in sight. The weavers somehow appeared to be part of the Earth. I'm not one to use phrases such as 'organic', but in  a way, it seemed as though the two complemented each other. 

One of the weavers told me that this specific village was known to have the best dhurries in Rajhastan, but he was from this village and was bound to think so. I was mesmerized and spent the entire day watching how they separated the yarn, how they mounted the looms, how they sat and wove using both their hands and feet while singing away to Bollywood hits from the 50s. 

 

 

Thought I'd share.

NK


Technicolor Dreams With Slim Aarons February 20 2013, 0 Comments

Our love for Slim Aarons photographs should not come as a surprise, since we are already quite consumed 'By the Sea'.  Aarons, a society photographer, immortalized pastimes such as lazing by the pool or strolling by the beach in a vibrant way.  He became famous for "photographing attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places".  

Aarons bright photographs evoke the golden age of technicolor cinema where everything is carefree and upbeat.  His collection of images from the late 1950's and early 1960's of women glamorously lounging by the pool are highly inspirational.  That pop of color in Aarons photos is highly uplifting, and makes us want to brighten up your day with our upcoming ecru products.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Slim Aarons) 


A Collaboration Made In Heaven February 18 2013, 0 Comments

Collaborations are exciting! Especially when you are combining forces with someone so colorful and bright.  

ecru has joined forces with the talented Sophia Edstrand of the whimsical Sophia 203 to create an array of products that will add a little bit of fantasy into your life.  Sophia 203's line of accessories involves an exquisite embroidery technique that was traditionally used to adorn miniature Hindu God figurines.  Today Sophia uses this intricate handicraft to create contemporary accessories.

It is quite thrilling to embroider ecru's unique prints in such a beautiful way, and we can't wait to share this collaboration with you.  

Hussah

(Images courtesy of Sophia 203 and ecru)


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