Monday, 30 December 2013

Tipped for the Top 2014

As hotly tipped acts such as Haim, Jake Bugg and CHVRCHES dominated our radio stations and Spotify playlists, you could say 2013 has been quite the year for emerging talent. Well, you’ll be pleased to know, it’s that time again. Where we pick out our eclectic mix of the top 5 bands we’ll be watching out for in 2014. 


Jungle
Secrecy is definitely this bands forte, where their unknown identity has enthralled and fascinated listeners since their track Platoon first went viral overnight. With their absorbing urban disco feel and anticipated 2014 tour, we expect to hear a lot more from the West London hailing vigilantes. 
 Listen to: Platoon, Heat


Chloe Howl 
 Spunky enough for the indie crowds and polished enough to appeal to the masses, Chloe Howl certainly seems like she’s got it sussed. With a similar sound and quirky appeal as Kate Nash and Lilly Allen, it’s definitely expected that Howl will be packing a feisty punch to make sure she appears in the 2014 charts. 
 Listen to: No Strings, Paper Heart


Wolf Alice 
 Who said Grunge is dead? Well underground alternative four-piece Wolf Alice don’t seem to think so. Imploding resonances of indie-folk-grunge, pieced together with Ellie Rowsell’s haunting vocals, the band have made way for an enthusing new sound. 
 Listen to: She, Blush


Moko
 In 2014 we expect pigtails to have another fashion moment, and why may you ask? Well that’s because there’s a new superstar on the block called Moko. So far her trendy South-London vibe hasn’t gone unnoticed, however we expect much bigger things from the urban/garage/soul singer next year. 
Listen to: Hand on Heart, Honey Cocaine 



 Wet 
 Stunningly simple, yet oh so charming, Wet deserve every accolade they obtain. Not since Daughter have we heard such motivationally pleasant sounds. Where the Brooklyn based three-piece have so far received rave reviews from across the pond. Let’s hope in 2014 they cross international waters and cast the UK under their graceful spell. 
 Listen to: Don’t Wanna Be Your Girl, Dreams

By Amy Gravelle

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Last Minute Gift Guide


Christmas is just around the corner, waiting excitedly in all its sparkly glory on the other side of the weekend. It’s going to be a packed weekend of last minute Christmas shopping, catch-ups and travelling for most. With this taken into consideration, it seemed more appropriate to share some gift ideas, in this week’s edit, for those of you who are also doing the last minute thing or are stuck on what to buy for that last tricky person…


For the kookier nineties child in your life why not get them these attention grabbing Home Alone earrings from Kushtea. Merry Christmas you filthy animals... 


Kinfolk is a Montreal based magazine that emphasises the relationships that are strengthened through the process of eating together. Their new Kinfolk Table book tells the story of different creative across the globe through the sharing of food and recipes. Who doesn’t want to eat well and in good company.  




The crazy cat person in your life will definitely appreciate this trippier than Zappa sweatshirt. There are some absolute gems on this awesome site so have a peruse.


The Fujifilm 90 is a step up instax that’s fun but also takes pretty decent pics. Great for outfit checks, memory preserving at parties and the impatient amongst us.

Marc Jacobs gorgeous pooch has its own Instagram account. Now you or your gift recipient can wear the world’s most fashionable hound in the form of this super cute brooch.


Sufjan Stevens does Christmas music like no other and this is one of the best Christmas albums. Listening to Sister Winter makes the heart melt.



Finally it just wouldn’t be Christmas without watching this cinematic gem. It’s a Wonderful life is the quintessential Christmas movie so why not share it this Christmas. 

By Kerry Flint

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Christmas Nibbles

Tis the season for entertaining, but time can be a little hard to come by at this time of year. If you’re expecting guests, or throwing a Christmas party we’ve got some simple but stylish recipes to really impress your guests. All of these nibbles can be made in under an hour from things you’ve got in the store cupboard so get baking and be prepared for your guests to be impressed!



Goat’s Cheese and Red Onion Palmiers 
These look really impressive but are so easy to make – we won’t tell if you don’t!

 Ingredients
250g puff pastry 
100g goats cheese 
3-4tbsp red onion chutney
Makes 20 

Method
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Roll your pastry out into a large rectangle about ½ cm thick. Sprinkle over the goats cheese and then the red onion chutney. Starting at one side, tightly roll into the middle, then brush the rolled edge with a little milk. Do the same with the opposite side, rolling into the middle then pressing the two sides together – the milk will help them stick. Cut into 20 even slices, place on a lined baking tray and bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the palmiers are fully risen and a lovely golden colour. Leave to cool on the tray, then serve. 

 Sausage and Stuffing Rolls 
Everyone’s favourite party food has been given a new twist for the festive season 

Ingredients
250g shortcrust pastry 
200g pork sausagemeat 
 1 box stuffing mix, made to the instructions – we went for sage and onion, but choose whichever flavour you prefer 
1 egg, beaten

Method
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Roll you pastry out into a large rectangle, about ½ cm thick. Place a line of sausagemeat down the middle of the pastry, then top with a layer of stuffing. Tightly roll the pastry around the sauagemeat and stuffing and brush the ends with beaten egg to secure. Cut into 10 equal slices and place fold down on a lined baking tray. Brush the top of each sausage roll with a little more beaten egg and cook for 20-15 minutes, until the pastry is golden and sauagemeat cooked through. Serve whilst still warm. 

 Baked Pitta Chips 
The latest snack craze is so easy to make at home – you’ll never want to buy them again! Perfect when loaded with a scoop of your favourite dip 

Ingredients
4 pitta breads 
1tbsp olive oil 
Salt and pepper, to season 

Preheat oven to 180°C. Cut each pitta bread into 8 pieces, then hold horizontally and carefully slice each piece in half again, until you’ve got a pile of thin pitta pieces. Mix together the olive oil and salt and pepper to flavour the chips – you really can go nuts here and use whatever flavours you fancy, paprika and cayenne pepper would be good to give the chips a kick, or try using some oregano and thyme for a herby flavour. Brush the pitta pieces with the oil and seasoning mixture and place on a baking tray. Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the chips are light and crispy. Leave to cool and serve with a selection of hummus and dips.

By Millie Norton

Monday, 16 December 2013

Lily Kamper

Inspired by an array of items including LED lights and abandoned Miami swimming pools, Lily Kamper’s SS14 jewelry collection is anything but ordinary. We love her latest collection of hand crafted and dip dyed pieces, all with distinctive architectural quality.The latest collection include chunky pendants, statement rings and delicate bangles with a mix of precious stones and fine metals, which pay homage to her distinguishing signature combination of hard and soft materials - and the outcome is nothing short of visually stimulating. We know what we'll be pairing with our Spring wardrobes...








Friday, 13 December 2013

Weekly Round Up

Unless you’ve been stranded on an oil rig in the Pacific with no form of communication or trapped in outer space for the last six months you can’t have helped but be made more than aware that it’s Christmas time. It’s happening folks and even the most Grinch like amongst us cannot escape it, so let’s embrace it. Here’s how to this weekend… 



GET FESTIVE at more of the many humble Christmas markets happening across London this weekend because you can never have too many mince pies. Visit the £3 Christmas Bazaar in Nunhead London this Saturday (14th December). It promises to be ‘part art, part Christmas fete and there’s even going to be a choir and white elephant stall – proper old school Christmassy! Peckham appears to be London’s pinnacle of Christmas with The Crafty Fox market be taking place at the Bussey building and Pexmas market on Sunday (15th December) at the Liberal Club both offering a range of stall and festive food and beverages to make merry with. 

PREPARE for next year’s first big cinematic release by watching the trailer for Spike Jonze’s latest film ‘Her’. It stars the magnificent Joaquin Phoenix who plays a heartbroken man called Theodore, who falls in love with a computer system called “Samantha”. Quirky, touching, visually stunning, provocative and heartfelt, Jonze is back on form with this latest offering, due out on January 10th. What a great start to 2014! 




INTRODUCE some graphics and colourful into your wardrobe combat those dark night winter blues. Tinned Bananas do a range of items from easy to wear t-shirts to bold jump suits in some super eye-catching patterns that are guaranteed to not just put a smile on your face but everybody else’s to boot.

LISTEN to French duo Velour Modular, whose latest track Sudden Motion is a nice old dose of spacey ethereal electronica reminiscent of The Knife and the video’s wonderfully barking. Influenced by the likes of Kuedo, Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs and Mount Kimbie they’re bound to make waves in 2014 stay one step ahead and give this track a play (probably over and over). 


WATCH queen Bey, who’s blown everyone’s mind this morning by releasing an entire album over night. 17 bootylicious videos no less, and yes BeyoncĂ© we’re definitely ready. 



BUY a watch, but not just any watch. With so much happening you’ll need to keep track of the time and HyperGrand’s made its debut with a range that have a NATO straps, designed by the military. Yes we’re talking top quality but these watches are far from utilitarian with a range of 12 interchangeable patterned straps (we love the Garden Skirmish) to choose from they’ll guarantee you’ll be fashionably on time.

DOWNLOAD the app we’ve all been waiting for. We can finally put an end to our eighteen years of jealousy over Cher’s virtual closet because the lovely folks at FaceCake have finally made it. It being an app where you can put together items from your wardrobe, share outfits and even do a little turn on the catwalk. Yep, mind is blown. 

By Kerry Flint

Tuesday, 10 December 2013

Apricot and Cranberry Cinnamon Rolls

The smell of baked cinnamon rolls wafting through the house is the ultimate in festive comfort at this time of year. Added cranberries and apricots give these a seasonal twist – the perfect thing to enjoy on a cold winters morning. 



Ingredients
For the rolls
450g strong white flour
75g dried cranberries
1tsp fast acting dried yeast
1tsp salt
1 ½ tbsp caster sugar
150ml hot milk and 150ml hot water mixed together – hot but not boiling!
For the filling
25g butter, melted
50g light brown sugar
2tbsp ground cinnamon
75g dried apricots, cut into small pieces
Makes 8 rolls

Method
- Place the flour, cranberries, yeast, salt and caster sugar into a large bowl and stir together. Now add the hot milk and water and mix together using an electric mixer with a dough hook attachment for 5 minutes – if you don’t have an electric mixer that’s fine, you can just use your hands and mix and knead for about 10 minutes. Once the dough has been mixed and kneaded, cover the bowl with a tea towel and leave in a warm place for 1 ½ hours, or until the dough has doubled in size.

- Once the dough has risen, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for another 5 minutes. Roll the dough out into a large rectangle about 1 cm thick, spread the surface with the melted butter and scatter over the sugar, cinnamon and apricot pieces in an even layer, making sure you reach the edges. Now roll the dough into a tight sausage shape, slice into 8 even pieces and place these, swirl side up on a lightly oiled baking tray.

- Leave in a warm place for a further 30 minutes, or if you want to make these for breakfast next day you can leave them in the fridge overnight (although if you do this, you will need to take the rolls out of the fridge and leave for 30 minutes to come up to room temperature before baking).

- When you are ready to bake the rolls, preheat the oven to 180°C and bake for 13-15 minutes, or until the rolls are well risen and a lovely golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly. You can eat the rolls as they are, but for an extra delicious twist make up some icing using 3tbsp icing sugar, 1tbsp water and 1tsp vanilla extract and drizzle over the top of the hot rolls. Tear off and eat warm – heavenly!

By Millie Norton