how to

4 Ways to style a Bandana

How to Style a Bandana

Who doesn't love pieces that can do double (or triple..) duty? I'm all about it. Especially if you're traveling, those chameleon pieces can be life savers. Bandanas have been my favorite go-to for a while now! They're super lightweight and can be worn so many different ways!

My favorites? 

  • Hide a bad hair day - Throwing it up with a bandana is a cute and easy fix, especially when your hair is in desperate need of washing!
  • Choker - use a bandana as jewelry replacement, wrap it around twice and tie it off with a little knot!
  • Throw it back to a classic "Scout" look by twisting it and then tying it off in the front!
  • Use a bandana as just a basic scarf and tie it up in the back.

And of course...

Twin time! Dutch always wears her bandana to work too :)

4 Tips for living with Kitchens with no storage

Fine and Feathered - 4 Tips for living with kitchens with no storage

It's hard to believe that we've been in our house for over two years. It kind of feels like we just moved in, but memories of living elsewhere also feel so distant at this point. 

Both the house, and the apartment that we had lived in before we bought ours had one thing in common - big kitchens with tons of storage! It was a luxury that's easy to take advantage. Then we moved into our house which originally had the teeny tiniest kitchen. It was oddly set up, but thankfully we were able to knock out a few walls that completely opened it up! It was great, but since we have so many projects we're working on with the house, the actual remodeling of the kitchen has been on the back burner. So when it comes to storage our kitchen has a total of one cabinet. It's the lovely built-in that's original to the kitchen, but the top half has glass doors, which means that our storage space for all of those not so pretty things that we all have in our kitchen, is basically nothing. Over the last few years I've learned some tricks to making a kitchen with no storage (or counter space!) work, that have really helped me from going crazy over the lack of hiding places.

ROLLING CARTS ARE YOUR FRIEND 

Seriously, I love a cute little cart with wheels. Not only can you stick them in any little corner you might have, but I've really loved that I can roll them out of the way whenever we do any construction work in the kitchen and I don't have to worry about totally unloading everything to move it! 

I have both a large utility cart, and this one I thrifted a while back both in my kitchen housing appliances, dry foods, and cleaning products. I also am totally smitten with the cart in the picture above that I bought from Demi-Brooke, that I've turned into my coffee cart! Each cart has a specific purpose and I try to keep them super organized to keep things from getting messy. 

My favorite places to find carts are thrift stores (see this post for the before and after of mine) and garage sales. I also love places like Ikea and Target to find them cute, and at good prices (this one is a total steal, andthis one is totally stealing my heart).

MAKE YOUR STORAGE DECORATIVE

If your tight on hidden storage space make whatever you need to store out on your counters (or carts) cute! I am obsessed with pretty glass storage containers. I keep almost all of my dry food goods in them. These are super easy to find at almost any thrift store for cheap, but if you're looking for matching ones, places like The Container Store and Home Goods are great places to find them too. 

Fine and Feathered - 4 Tips for living with kitchens with no storage

KEEP THINGS ORGANIZED

This may seem like I'm stating the obvious, but I can't stress how important it is for everything to have it's "own space" especially in tiny kitchens. When every square inch of storage is packed, you don't want to have to pull everything apart just to try to find your favorite spatula. Part of keeping things organized for me, has been going through my kitchen once every couple months and seeing what I really need handy. Do I need that specialty baking pan ready to grab, when I've only used it once in the last five years? Probably not. I always walk away with a new bag to donate, as well as a little box to put into long term storage in my basement. 

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE REST OF YOUR HOME

When things are tight, expand! I was so happy once I brought my coffee cart into my dining room. Not only does it free up a lot of space in the kitchen for more important things, but it looks so cute! Even if we didn't have a dining room, I think a coffee cart would be cute in a living room or office. Think outside the box and take a look around to see if there's anything that's taking up space in that little kitchen of yours that could find a home in another part of your house. Use your imagination, and don't be afraid to experiment and see what works! 

Fine and Feathered - 4 Tips for living with kitchens with no storage

Simple Cold Brew Coffee

Fine and Feathered - Simple Cold Brew Coffee

This has been my summer of cold brew coffee. There seems to always be a jar brewing on our counter, paired with an almost empty jar, waiting to be finished off, in the fridge. It's been like a little miracle for me. I never have been able to make a decent cup of iced coffee for the hot months, so I've always been stuck spending a couple bucks for someone else to make it, and usually not liking it all that much anyways. 

I had actually never heard of the term Cold Brew until Starbucks introduced it this summer. I usually hate their coffee, but was able to stomach their cold brew, so I knew I had to look into this whole idea and figure out how to recreate it for myself. 

The truth is, it's insanely simple, and if you love iced coffee, you should definitely be making your own cold brew. From my experience with it so far, I've found that it's really all about focusing on the little things that might change it. I like to make my cold brew a really strong concentrate and then just dilute it with a little water when I'm adding my milk and sugar too. Since it's a concentrate, one jar can easily last an entire week for me. 

Making your own cold brew is actually incredibly easy. It takes time, but almost all of it is passive. 

THE BASICS

In a sealable jar, combine one cup of coffee grounds and three cups of cold water, gently stir and allow to sit at room temperature for eight hours, or in the fridge overnight. Strain mixture twice using a coffee filter, or cheesecloth. Refrigerate, and you're done! 

 

SOME TIPS

- Invest in good coffee. That's really the most important thing you can do. Go to an awesome local coffee roaster, and get some of the good stuff. I don't have a grinder myself, so I just have them grind it to percolator for me. I've been getting mine from Pour Richards in Devon, PA since it's on my way to work, and it's oh-so good. 

- Try to use a container that it will completely fill. I've read online that the less air in with your brewing coffee, the better. I use a large mason jar (I believe it's a quart size) and it's perfect for me. 

- For straining, I like to use my large mixer bowl to strain it into just because it's convenient, and it has a spout, which makes it easy to pour back into a jar when I'm done, but you can really use any bowl or strainer set up that you already have on hand.

- You should note that the first filtering will take some time. Usually a good 10-15 minutes. Try not to rush it, just do your thing while it's doing its thing. The second filtering will go a lot faster. 

- Depending on how strong my concentrate is, I usually cut it half and half with water when I drink it, but that's all about personal preference, so experiment with how strong you like it.

- Not cold brew specific, but just a tip, If you're like me, and like your coffee just a little sweet, try brown sugar instead of white! It dissolves easier into cold drinks, and tastes even better than white does. 

Fine and Feathered - Simple Cold Brew Coffee