12.23.2012

Merry Christmas


Merry Christmas!

I will be taking a short winter break from the blog but look forward to discussing my favorite topics with you when I get back.

Thank you for all of your messages and requests. I read and appreciate them all even though I am not always able to respond...

Wishing you and your family peace, good health and prosperity going into the new year. See you soon!

PS- Gatsby sends his love ♥


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12.20.2012

How Not to Overindulge Over the Holidays



Before this post begins I have a few very special announcements:

♥ I am going to be a regular contributing writer for Huffington Post Style! It's a major honor for me to be aligned with such a prestigious publication. Here is my first article, sharing my DIY, cost-effective fruit decorations for the holidays.

♥ Huffington Post Canada has picked Lessons from Madame Chic as one of the best fashion books of the year! To read the article, click here.

OK I had to get those out of the way because they were too exciting not to mention first :)

I've received a lot of requests recently to discuss overindulging with food over the holidays (how not to, specifically). So that is what I am discussing in today's YouTube video.

You know me, I don't like to deprive myself of anything... but this comes with a few caveats. Watch my video to see how I make this philosophy work for me. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

I would love to know... what are your tips for not overindulging over the holiday season?


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12.17.2012

Chic Gift Wrap for the Holidays



This past weekend I went to see the Los Angeles Ballet perform the Nutcracker at UCLA's Royce Hall. It was a magical production. I've seen the Nutcracker several times but this year's performance was particularly special. I appreciated the artistic choreography and the familiar, beautiful music. The dancing was mesmerizing and I especially loved seeing the children dance in the ballet... joy emanating from their precious movements.

I like to slow down during the holiday season, cut out all of the hype and unnecessary spending and take pleasure from the simple things: lots of baking, decorations from nature (as you've seen in the last few posts), spending time with family, enjoying the arts and (as you will see this week) getting creative with wrapping presents.

Chic Gift Wrap

Brown paper packages tied up with string... the secret behind my budget-friendly, yet very chic, gift wrap. The key to dressing up your special brown package is in the accessories: beautiful ribbon, unique gift tags or natural materials like raffia, dried fruit and lavender.

If you are unable to see my embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Book News

♥ Check out my interview with Kimberlee from I Have A Degree In This about blogging, publishing and Lessons from Madame Chic. (This same article was also posted on Lucky Magazine's website!) Thank you Kimberlee!

♥ Phyrra is hosting a giveaway of Lessons from Madame Chic on her lovely beauty blog. Enter here.

A final word
I would like to extend my condolences to the families affected by the tragic events in Connecticut this past week. My heart goes out to everyone affected. I pray that we as a society can come together to fix the problems that lie behind these senseless tragedies.

To donate to the Sandy Hook Elementary Victims, you can do so here via United Way.

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12.13.2012

Chic, Budget-friendly Christmas Ornaments



It can be very tempting to go overboard and spend a fortune on holiday decorations... but really there is no need. You can create your own natural, chic decorations at home.

Each year I like to create my own homemade ornaments from dried citrus fruit. These ornaments are budget-friendly (not to mention kid-friendly!) but also look so elegant.

You will need:

Citrus fruit (you can use oranges, grapefruit, lemons, limes, satsumas, etc.)
parchment paper
baking sheet
raffia (or some other natural string)

Thinly slice the citrus fruit and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in a low oven (220° F) for 6 hours. While the fruit is drying, they fill your home with the most amazing scent! Once dry, string with raffia and hang them on your tree.

I also like to use bows as ornaments, which is another cost-effective decorating idea.

To learn more about dried citrus fruit ornaments and to see our Christmas tree, check out my video. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Book News

Matchbook Magazine has picked Lessons from Madame Chic for their holiday gift guide this year as the perfect gift to give your très chic best friend.

♥ Lessons from Madame Chic also received a great review on The Gilmore Guide to Books this week.

♥ Check out this adorable Tumblr page from Simon & Schuster featuring the perfect gifts for the Francophiles in your life.

♥ Congratulations to the three winners of the big Simon & Schuster Giveaway: Jacqueline Jones, Neva Sarenana and Felicia Loveys! Simon & Schuster will contact you to arrange shipment of your prize packets.

See you next week when we'll discuss chic, budget-friendly gift wrap!



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12.10.2012

Sugared Fruit Centerpiece



Every holiday season I love to create this elegant centerpiece of sugared fruit. When displayed in a footed bowl or on a tiered cake stand, this inexpensive centerpiece looks grand and opulent.

You will need:

seasonal fruit
greenery (in the video I use rosemary, but you can use any foliage from your garden or even greens from your Christmas tree)
egg whites (I use two)
a brush
superfine sugar
aluminum foil (to help dry the fruit)
a pretty bowl or tiered cake stand

Watch my video to see how to create this Victorian inspired centerpiece. If you are unable to see my embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Music in the video: Tchaikovsky's Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy from the Nutcracker Suite (naturally!)

This week I would love to know... what is your favorite holiday centerpiece?

Book News

I'm so pleased Lessons from Madame Chic is featured in Matchbook Magazine's holiday gift guide! Check out the coverage here.

This week I will be a guest on the WKRQ radio show, Amy's Table: A Girl's Guide to Living. I'll be sure to post links as soon as they are available.


Have a great week. Wishing a Happy Hanukkah to all who celebrate. See you soon! x



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12.06.2012

Special Guest Post: Biz Etiquette by Cassie Piasecki

Fellow blogger and etiquette aficionado Cassie Piasecki has recently released her handy etiquette guide for small business owners and freelancers called BizEtiquette. I asked Cassie to write a guest post for the Daily Connoisseur on her top five business etiquette tips. Her lovely picture and article are below. Thank you Cassie!


5 BizEtiquette Tips by Cassie Piasecki

When Jennifer asked me to give some BizEtiquette tips for small biz owners, I was thrilled. Having great etiquette is not only smart as a proprietor, it is classy and chic. With the current unemployment rate, entrepreneurship has become increasingly popular in our country. Competition is stiff and first impressions count!

Here are my Top 5 BizEtiquette Tips:

1. My Office aka Working From Starbucks
You’ve got to start somewhere. Not everyone can afford the rent on a brilliant space right out of the gate. That being said, if you are making a call from your “office”, make sure your barking dog is out of earshot. And, if we can hear the barista call out, “triple red eye for Steve”, it’s best to take the V.I.P. call in your quieter office…the car.

2. Schedule Wisely
A lunch meeting can easily suck up your entire day, cost you extra money and widen your waistline. Schedule your meetings first thing in the morning with a set time that you need to get back to your office or make it a late afternoon chat, after you have completed a good chunk of your to do list.

3. But Your Website Says…
Stuff happens, things change and code gets screwed up. Once a month do a thorough check of your website. Nothing says “unprofessional” like images that don’t upload, links that don’t work or contact information that has changed.

4. Heated Phone Conversations
Are you the gal behind the counter? When the print shop calls to tell you that your project will be delayed (again) and you are in the company of clients or employees, don’t lose it. You set the tone of the shop, office, café, etc.

5. The 5 Second Clean Up
Having a client over to your office? Jeez! I hope it doesn’t take more than 5 seconds to tidy up. You are organized, right? Besides making sure your workplace is neat, take a look in the restroom and kitchen area (if you have it).

Cassie Piasecki is Pro-Brainstormer. She is obsessed with entrepreneurs, a fitness freak, tech geekette, a stickler for good manners and author of BizEtiquette. You can read more about her on her blog and follow her on Twitter.

This week we would love to know... what are some of your favorite business etiquette tips?

Book News
Thank you to all of the amazing publications that have mentioned Lessons from Madame Chic recently. I am overwhelmed by your support!

Thank you to:

The Smoky Mountain News
The Elizabeth Letter
Chic On The Street
No-Nonsense Beauty Blog
Isabelle Lafleche at Pink Lemonade
Kathryn Bechen INK
FABZILLA
Reginah's Runway

Thanks again to Cassie... see you all next week!

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12.03.2012

Look Presentable Always



Looking presentable always. A concept that may seem obvious to many people, but is something I think we as a society desperately need to discuss.

Looking presentable on a daily basis may initially seem like a shallow and superficial concept, but really it is about so much more than appearances. It's about respect. It's about tradition. It's about honoring formalities that seem to be going by the wayside.

We've all seen people at the airport walking around in their pajamas. Or worse yet we've seen people wearing jeans and tennis shoes (or worse) to dressy events. When I see these things I am always reminded of my favorite film stars from the 30s and 40s like Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn. What on earth would they think? They lived in a time when people used to dress beautifully for everything from airplane travel to running an errand at the corner store.

To hear more of my thoughts on the subject, check out this week's video. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

This week I would love to know... what are your thoughts on looking presentable always?

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11.26.2012

My Ten-Item Wardrobe: Extras



Wow! Thank you all for your great response to the last two Ten-Item Wardrobe posts and videos. This clearly is a topic that resonates with a lot of people. It is one of the biggest lifestyle changes I made after living in Paris. It takes a while to pare down to a capsule wardrobe, but once you do, you really can't go back. It makes your life so much simpler and it propels you to use your 'best' on a daily basis.

I received many questions from viewers wondering how on earth do I get by with so few clothes? And do I really only have ten items?? Well don't forget about the extras as written about in Lessons from Madame Chic. Extras are things like tee shirts, camisoles, blazers, jackets, coats, cocktail or special occasion dresses, cardigans, scarves, shoes, etc. These things help round out your wardrobe. They are not considered your core items. And while I wear my core items in heavy rotation, you will also find me wearing a tee shirt and jeans many days of the week as well. It is just what works with my lifestyle, having two small children.

Please watch my video to see a few examples of the extras I have in my wardrobe. If you are unable to see the video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Items featured in this video:
(Please note: many of the clothing items in this video I've had for years and are not available in stores. I am providing links to the websites below where I can.)

White tee by Michael Stars
Grey sweater blazer by Banana Republic
Black jersey tee by Velvet
Black velvet blazer by J Crew
Pirouette red croc ballet flats by London Sole (I received many questions about my London Sole ballet flat collection from last week's video. They do not run true to size. For example, I wear a size 7 and in these Pirouettes I wear a 38. If you have any confusion when ordering size, check out the size chart on their website, or give the shop a call. The sales assistants are very helpful).
Red scarf by Love Quotes
Black wool trench coat by J Crew
Fuschia dress by Adrianna Papell
Tan suede heels by Jimmy Choo



Chat With Women Radio Show
This Tuesday, November 27th at 12:45 PST, I will be a guest on the Chat With Women radio show, hosted by Pam Gray and Rochelle Alhadeff for Seattle Talk Radio KKNW-AM. We will be discussing Lessons from Madame Chic and my tips for holiday style! Be sure to tune in!

Writers Tribe Book Club
This Sunday, December 2nd, at 5pm PST, I will be doing a live teleconference interview for the LA Writers Lab on Lessons from Madame Chic! During the call I will read an excerpt from the book, have a discussion about the writing process and answer reader questions. Interviewing me will be the lovely mystery author and Daily Connoisseur reader Kristi Belcamino. To learn more, visit the Writers Tribe Book Club home page. To join the call dial: 1-218-936-4700 and enter the access code 38574.

Australia and New Zealand
Lessons from Madame Chic comes out this Tuesday, November 27th! I am so happy to have my book represented down under. I would love to one day visit both of your beautiful countries to meet readers. One can hope!

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11.19.2012

My Ten-Item Wardrobe for Fall/ Winter 2012



Last week we discussed how to get started with your ten-item wardrobe, as described in Lessons from Madame Chic. Today I am going to show you my own ten-item wardrobe.

Items shown in the video:
Black wrap dress by DVF
Leopard print tunic by Parker
Blackberry silk top by American Vintage
Plum print dress by Tory Burch (Spring)
Beige tank dress by Club Monaco (Spring)
Bone silk top by Rebecca Taylor
White tie front blouse by Elizabeth & James
Tan peplum sweater by Tory Burch
Black skinny jeans by J Brand
Black crop linen trousers by MNG

In the video I am wearing:
Graphite silk top by Rebecca Taylor (I love this top and as you probably have noticed in my videos, have worn it for years).

J Brand dark wash skinny jeans

Also shown in the video are my London Sole ballet flats (which add daytime polish to all of my outfits).

As you can see, my wardrobe is not exactly ten-items. The concept of the ten-item wardrobe is not meant to be a strict, rigid regime, but rather an exercise in liberating yourself from an overly cluttered wardrobe. The goal here is to get your clothing down to a capsule collection of high quality clothes. (The less you shop, the more high quality clothes you can afford over time).

Also it is important to note that my wardrobe this season contains more new items than it normally does. This is due to feeling like I've been in maternity clothes for the last two years! I know many of you moms can relate... After having my second baby and finally getting back down to my regular size, I had a major clear out (again) of my wardrobe and started over. And while there are newish items featured here, many are old standbys that I've had for years.

Reader questions:

I have received many emails from readers asking how one is able to function with so few clothes. Madeleine in Australia asked about living in a hot climate. She said she is required to change her clothes often because of the heat where she lives. You must tailor your ten-item wardrobe to your given circumstances. If you need to change a few times throughout the day due to climate, then keep more items in your wardrobe. Also, don't forget the extras (tee shirts, camisoles, blazers, extra dresses, etc.). These things will also help to make your closet feel substantial.

YouTube viewer, Landra27, wrote that she lives in Germany where the climate is very cold in the wintertime. In her case, she would have much warmer items: sweaters, sweater dresses, etc. Her extras will also come into play here as she will need a lot of layering pieces to keep warm (cardigans, jackets, coats, long sleeve tee shirts, etc.)

A few more things to keep in mind:

I shot this video about three weeks ago. Since then the weather has gotten chillier in Southern California so I have switched out the two spring dresses for sweaters (a lavender cashmere sweater and a navy wool sweater, both from J Crew). I also traded in the crop linen pants for the pair of black velvet trousers you saw on the KCAL 9 segment. This is a perfect example of how to edit your wardrobe when the seasons change. If you live in a temperate climate like I do, you will most likely need a few transitional pieces to get you through the change in seasons. I tend to store my seasonal clothes in storage bags, in the guest closet or (if I think I might need to use them again soon) in the 'extras' section of my closet (more on extras next week).

If you are unable to see my video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Announcements

If you have not already signed up for my author newsletter, please do so. Newsletters will be periodical and will share book news, seasonal anecdotes and inside scoops that I will not be sharing on the blog. My very first newsletter will go out this week and will discuss Lessons from Madame Chic in Australia and New Zealand, holiday decluttering and a behind the scenes look at my KCAL9 interview. To sign up for the newsletter click here.

There is only one day left to enter the Lessons from Madame Chic sweepstakes from Simon & Schuster. 3 people will win a prize packet including London Sole ballet flats, Benedetta skincare products, Arbordoun calendula cream and Skindinavia makeup finishing spray. Enter here.

And, lastly, for all who celebrate, I am wishing you and your families a very happy Thanksgiving...

Next week I will show you some items that comprise my 'extras' wardrobe.

See you then!

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11.15.2012

My KCAL9 Interview (video) and The Vivant

KCAL9
Yesterday I appeared on the KCAL 9 news at noon to discuss the Ten-Item Wardrobe from Lessons from Madame Chic. I had a great time shooting the segment and hope to go back one day (as I told the producers, I have a lot to talk about!). In the segment I show you many items from my own wardrobe, which you will get a better look at in next week's video on the Daily Connoisseur.

For those of you unable to view the piece live, click here to see my interview in its entirety.

The Vivant

I am featured in an article for online luxury magazine, The Vivant, discussing that je ne sais quoi of Parisian style. Click here to read the article.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend. Check in next week to see my own ten-item wardrobe up close and in detail. See you soon!

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11.12.2012

Ten-Item Wardrobe: Getting Started



One of the topics I get asked the most about from Lessons from Madame Chic is the Ten-Item Wardrobe. So many of us are used to having dozens, if not hundreds, of garments hanging in our wardrobe. The thought of having only ten core items per season seems daunting, if not impossible.

I know, because I was one of those people. My wardrobe was filled (and I mean filled) with clothes but for some reason I was never satisfied with my style and never seemed to have anything I wanted to wear. Learning about the ten-item wardrobe in Paris changed all that and my goodness has it been a revelation!

The next few weeks will be devoted to the ten-item wardrobe. So let's get started!

Watch this week's video to hear my tips for getting your own ten-item wardrobe underway. Even if you only do this as an experiment, the benefits are tremendous.

If you are unable to see the video in this post, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

And for Southern California residents, tune in to KCAL 9 news at noon this Wednesday, November 14th to see me discuss the ten-item wardrobe live!

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11.08.2012

Major Giveaway & My KCAL News Interview

Thank you all for your warm reception of Lessons from Madame Chic! It's been a wonderful week for me. Tuesday morning after I voted, I walked over to the Santa Monica Barnes & Noble and bought a copy of my book.


This was a surreal and proud moment for me. I worked at Barnes & Noble as a bookseller when I first graduated college. To have one of my books on their shelves now is a great reminder to never give up on your dreams.

KCAL News
Next Wednesday, November 14th, I will be appearing on the KCAL news at Noon PST to discuss the Ten-Item Wardrobe from Lessons from Madame Chic! If you are local to the Los Angeles area, set your DVRs and please wish me luck!

For those of you unable to see the segment I will post a video of it at a later date.

Major Giveaway


Simon & Schuster and I have orchestrated a major giveaway to celebrate the release of Lessons from Madame Chic (the biggest giveaway I've ever done!)

We are giving away three prize packets (which means three winners!) that contain the following:

A copy of Lessons from Madame Chic (bien sûr!)

A gift voucher for a pair of London Sole ballet flats (amazing!)

Benedetta skincare products including: The Seaweed Bath, Lavender Hydrosol and Lavender Body Lotion

Skindinavia makeup finishing spray

Arbordoun Abundantly Herbal Calendula Cream


Due to restrictions, this giveaway is open to US residents only. The giveaway will go from now until November 27th with the winners being announced by Simon & Schuster on November 30th.

You do not enter the giveaway on this blog, but rather, on Simon & Schuster's site. To enter the giveaway click here

Best of luck!

In other giveaway news, the lovely Andi from Misadventures With Andi is hosting a Lessons from Madame Chic giveaway. You can enter for a chance to win here.

See you soon!


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11.06.2012

Lessons from Madame Chic is Out Today



I am so happy to announce that Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris is finally out today in North America and the UK! As many of you know this book has had quite a journey. I self published the book last year and after a great reception from readers (thanks to you!) and great reviews, including one from The New York Times, my book was picked up by Simon & Schuster.


I am so proud of this new edition. It is a beautiful hardcover (but is available in eBook as well), newly edited and filled with delightful illustrations from the artist Virginia Johnson.




Here is the description from Simon & Schuster:

When Jennifer Scott arrived at the doorstep of a grand Sixteenth Arrondissement apartment as a foreign exchange student, she was greeted by the woman who would become her mentor and the inspiration for the way she lived long after her time abroad was over. Madame Chic took the casual California teenager under her wing, revealing the secrets of how the French elevate the little things in life to the art of living.

Each chapter of Lessons from Madame Chic reveals a valuable secret Jennifer learned while under Madame Chic’s tutelage in Paris—tips you can incorporate into your own life, no matter where you live or the size of your budget. Embracing the classically French aesthetic of quality over quantity, aspiring Parisiennes will learn to master the art of eating (deprive yourself not), dressing (the ten-item wardrobe), grooming (le no-makeup look), and living à la française. From entertaining with easy flair and formality to cultivating allure while living an active, modern life, Lessons from Madame Chic is the essential handbook for anyone wanting to incorporate that Parisian je ne sais quoi into her daily life.


Lessons from Madame Chic can be purchased in all major bookstores as well as on the following sites:

Hardcover:

Amazon

B&N
Indie Bound
Books A Million
Amazon UK


E-Book:
Amazon Kindle
B&N Nook


I want to thank all of you wonderful readers for being so supportive over the years. Without you, this book would not exist. If you enjoy reading Lessons from Madame Chic, please help me spread the word by recommending it to your friends, reviewing it on Amazon and Barnes & Noble and mentioning it on your social networking sites.

To learn more about Lessons from Madame Chic, watch my video. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

And please stay tuned for this Thursday when I will announce a MAJOR giveaway. See you then!

**Lessons from Madame Chic will be available in many other counties as well. Please check in with my blog or author website for updates.


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11.02.2012

Neuma Blow Dry Lotion, Pinca Pendants, Red Cross & More

Going into the weekend I have several things to share with you... so here we go!

Neuma Blow Dry Lotion

Always on the lookout to achieve the perfect at home blow dry for my hair, I recently tried out Neuma Blow Dry Lotion, which is a sustainable heat protectant and styling cream. It adds hold and manageability to your hair, reduces frizz and makes great use of plant extracts and essential oils.

Neuma sent me this blow dry lotion to try out and I've used it several times over the last few months. I really like the smoothness this high quality cream gives my hair. It really does make a great companion to accomplishing a professional-looking at home blow out. I'm happy to add this to my list of favorite blow dry creams and serums which also include: Fekkai Ironless Straightening Balm, Kérastase Nectar Thermique, and CHI Silk Infusion.

What makes Neuma Blow Dry Lotion so different from my other blow out creams is that Neuma use only renewable, beneficial plant-based ingredients.

It contains (info from their website): ZERO synthetic fragrance, sulfates, sodium chloride, parabens, 1,4-dioxane, phthalates, glutens, neurotoxins, aluminum compounds, glycols, formaldehyde donors, ureas, carcinogens, environmental pollutants

More earth-friendly aspects of the Blow Out Cream include:
• Renewable, beneficial, plant-based, colour safe ingredients
• Certified Organic Extracts
• 85% post consumer recycled bottles
• 100% certified wind power
• 100% recycled fiber containers
• Vegan
• PETA approved
• No animal testing

Here are some of the blow dry lotion's key ingredients:

• Neuma’s Signature Phyto UV Shield™: A proprietary blend of certified organic plant extracts that enhance hue, reflectivity and vibrancy of color
• Sunflower Seed Oil: Provides UV protection while adding shine, as well as shields hair from heat damage
• Sage Extract: Soothes scalp and conditions hair
• Rose Hips Fruit Extract: Aids in making hair softer and more manageable
• Apricot Kern Oil: Conditions and helps to smooth the hair cuticle, controlling flyaways and frizz, while adding shine

As I start to become more conscious about the types of beauty products I use I am more drawn toward natural brands like this one... If you give it a try I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

Neuma Blow Dry Lotion sells for $24 and is available at select salons and beauty stores nationwide. For more information, please check out www.neumabeauty.com

Pinca Pendants



I hear from so many readers of the Daily Connoisseur who are artists and entrepreneurs. I applaud this greatly and especially love to hear about women entrepreneurs. Recently Daily Connoisseur reader Marie Thérèse of Pinca Pendants sent me one of her hand crafted necklaces. I thought it was so lovely I just had to share.

For more information on Pinca Pendants, check out their facebook page and Etsy store.

Red Cross Relief

Hurricane Sandy left so much devastation in its wake. My heart goes out to all of the families affected. A very easy way to donate to the emergency disaster relief is to text REDCROSS to 90999 to donate $10. This may not seem like a lot but if we all chip in, our contribution can really make a difference. The deduction is taken from your cell phone bill. For more information, or to donate another amount, visit www.redcross.org


Book News


I have two more exciting Lessons from Madame Chic giveaways to share with you. The first is with CobbleStay (a wonderful service that helps you reserve luxury apartments in Paris). Read my interview with CobbleStay to see everything from my thoughts on raising daughters to my favorite Paris pastry.

The next giveaway to share is on The Glamorous Housewife blog. Thank you to Bethany for your lovely review of the book.

I hope you all have a great weekend... see you on Tuesday for the book launch!

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10.29.2012

How to Deal with Intimidating Situations (and Other News)



Before we begin, I want to extend my prayers and love to everyone affected by Hurricane Sandy. May you and your loved ones stay safe...

How to Deal With Intimidating Situations

You are equal to any situation you encounter.

Oftentimes we think we might not be worthy or good enough for a situation. We might think people are judging us or that we are not qualified. That is why I love this quote from Marlene Dietrich so much. It reminds us that we are equal to any situation, that we are enough.

Glamour is assurance. It is a kind of knowing that you are all right in every way, mentally and physically and in appearance and that, whatever the occasion or the situation, you are equal to it. —Marlene Dietrich

At first glance, the quote seems to be about glamour, but really it's about so much more than that. It's about empowerment. And it's great advice to take for dealing with intimidating situations.

Watch my video to see why this is one of my favorite quotes, and how you can make it work for you. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

This week I would love to know... how do you deal (or not deal) with intimidating situations?

And in other news...

This past week I wrote an article for Tips on Life and Love called, 5 Essential Pieces for The Perfect Fall Wardrobe. I hope you enjoy my picks!

Book News

Lessons from Madame Chic comes out next Tuesday! To lead up to the celebration, there are giveaways taking place on the following blogs this week: The Simply Luxurious Life (thank you, Shannon, for the lovely article too!), Classic + Glam blog and Polly-Vous Français.

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10.22.2012

3 Essential Slips for Your Undergarment Wardrobe



Undergarments truly are the foundation of great style and slips are no exception. Up until recently, slips have taken a dive in popularity. I know I used to think of them as unnecessary and old-fashioned, but in reality slips can remedy a myriad of problems with our dresses— some problems which we might never have thought about before!

Nordstrom has a wonderful slip section, and that is where I generally find my slips. The slips featured in this week's video are:

Commando Mini Cami slip

Commando half slip

TC "Torsette" shaping slip

Watch this week's video to see my slip collection and hear my thoughts on how invaluable they can be for a modern wardrobe. If you are unable to see my embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

This week I would love to know... what kind of slips do you wear?

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10.15.2012

Losing the Baby Weight & Breast Cancer Awareness



This has been a heavily requested topic... losing the baby weight.

I have many thoughts on the subject that all fall in line with my general philosophy on life (quelle surprise!).

Of course I am not always good at taking my own advice. Right after having my second baby I felt frustrated almost instantly with the extra weight I had to lose. But these things take time. It's a gradual shift that occurs, that goes hand in hand with a healthy lifestyle and attitude.

Watch my video (which was recorded at the end of a rather long day!) to hear my thoughts and tips on losing the baby weight. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

This week I would love to know... what has been your experience with losing the baby weight?

Breast Cancer Awareness Month

October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. My mother-in-law, Jane, is a brave breast cancer survivor. Her inspiring story is a great reminder of the importance of getting regular mammograms as early detection is what saved her. Please don't delay. Schedule your regular mammogram today!

To donate to the American Cancer Society for breast cancer research click here.

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10.08.2012

Keep Classical Music Alive



I listen to it while making breakfast in the morning, and while cleaning the kitchen at night...

I listen to it when I drive...

I listen to it when I write...

And it's on in the background when I read...

Classical music is such an integral part of my day. It's my favorite genre of music. I grew up listening to it in my parents' home and it has remained with me ever since.

Classical KUSC is such an amazing resource. It is a listener supported classical music station— one of the last of its kind.

They are 91.5 fm for those of us in Los Angeles. Or you can listen to them anytime, from anywhere in the world, on their website: www.kusc.org

I am told that they are on iHeart radio as well (Thank you reader Janu Tornell for this information!)

You can listen to KUSC anytime for free, but if you feel as passionate about keeping classical music on the radio as much as I do, please consider donating to them and becoming a member. No donation is too small!

Watch my embedded video to learn more about Classical KUSC, their special broadcasts, and their lovely newsletters. If you are unable to watch the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur.

To learn more, visit www.kusc.org, or click here.

To donate to Classical KUSC click here.

P.S. My favorite composer is Chopin... who is yours?


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10.04.2012

The Evolution of the Daily Connoisseur (and How I Spend My Days)

The Daily Connoisseur is constantly evolving and many of you have noticed that the videos are playing a starring role in the content of the blog. This is completely intentional. I love doing the videos and I hope you love to watch them! It's a great creative outlet for me (I did start out my career in Theatre after all!) and it is a fun way to communicate with you.

Even though I only post once a week, I put a lot of effort and energy into this blog. It is not just finding the time to shoot the videos, I also edit them, and for the most part I compose the music in them (on my MacBookPro in Garage Band, for those wondering). A lot of thought goes into each and every detail.

With regard to writing, I write every day— when my children nap during the day or at night when they are asleep (it varies). What am I writing? My future books! Writing books has always been my dream and what an amazing thing that I am finally able to realize this dream. I never take a break from writing, it is done every single day, even if it is only for 10 minutes. My writing mentor, Al Watt, taught me to write every day, even Sunday, and that's what I've done ever since.

Does this mean I won't have essays on the Daily Connoisseur? Not at all. This blog will continue to evolve as I do. Who knows what's in store for us...

Right now is the most exciting time of my life. I am thoroughly enjoying being a mother. My children are my priority right now. I'm a stay at home mom, with them every day, doing the best job in the world I can do and loving every moment (even the hard ones). I can't even believe that my youngest will be 5 months old in a few days time. It is shocking me how fast time is flying.

Also with the release of Lessons from Madame Chic right around the corner a lot of other exciting things are happening. I'm looking forward to promoting my book and starting this new chapter in my career. Right now it's all about finding a delightful balance and rhythm to life and the way it's all evolving now feels magnificent.

I am planning many exciting companion videos for Lessons from Madame Chic that will air in about a month's time and will address many of your requests with them (can we say 10 Item Wardrobe??).

So I will continue to work on the blog, write my books and enjoy my family and I want to thank all of you for your support along the way.

A note on emails
I love to hear from readers and want to thank everyone who has reached out to me in the past. I used to be able to respond to each query but now due to the high volume of emails I'm receiving I'm not always able to respond. The best way to contact me (and get a response!) is via Twitter or Facebook.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend... Monday's post and video is about a subject very near to my heart. See you then!

P.S.
For all of you writers out there, my writing mentor, Alan Watt, has published books from his 90-Day Novel series. His teachings have been instrumental in writing my own books.

The 90-Day Novel: Unlock the Story Within

and

The 90-Day Rewrite: The Process of Revision

Both are amazing books that help you get the words on the page. Enjoy!

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9.24.2012

Presentable Sleepwear



A favorite concept in my forthcoming book, Lessons from Madame Chic, is to look presentable always... this includes sleepwear!

In this week's video I share with you a sleepwear set I have by French brand, Teccia, purchased at my local Santa Monica shop, Lisa Norman Lingerie.

If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

This week I would love to know... what's your favorite type of sleepwear?

For more information on Teccia, visit: www.teccia.fr

Lisa Norman Lingerie, etc. 310-451-2026

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9.17.2012

My No. 1 Skincare Tip



Skincare Tip

This week's video shares with you my number one skincare tip. Once I discovered it, it changed my skin for the better in so many ways.

Many of us tend to overcleanse our skin. We do a major routine morning and night. I still do my thorough skincare routine at night, which can involve any of the following: cleanser with the Clarisonic, the occasional mask, toner, exfoliant, serum, moisturizer and eye cream (phew!).

In the morning, however, all I do is splash lukewarm water on my face and then apply moisturizer and sunscreen. That's it! Doing so preserves my skin's natural oils and avoids the pitfalls that can come with overcleansing (breakouts, fine lines, dryness).

Check out my video to learn more about how this marvelous tip will change your skincare routine. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Lessons from Madame Chic Down Under

I wanted to share this gorgeous Christmas card HarperCollins Australia is using to promote Lessons from Madame Chic for the holidays. Isn't it divine?

Until next time...

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9.10.2012

The Etiquette of Modern Correspondence and Looking Perfectly Polished



In this new age of instant communication, where you can send off a note to someone with the click of a button, sometimes proper etiquette gets a bit lost in the shuffle, as you will see in this week's video.

I recently emailed the mother of a good friend of mine and addressed her by her first name, which I had never used until this point. Of course I realized my faux pas only after pressing send. As I say in the video, this isn't the end of the world, but it brings up a great point about how thoughtful (or thoughtless) we are being with the new ways we communicate.

If you are unable to see the embedded video sharing my cautionary tale about the etiquette of modern correspondence, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

I would love to know your thoughts on the subject... has this ever happened to you?

Redbook Magazine

I was once again interviewed for Redbook Magazine, this time for a piece called 7 Ways to Look Perfectly Polished. Looking polished does not require you to buy new things, but to work with what you already have. It's all about attention to detail. I hope you enjoy my tips! To read the Redbook article, click here.

Until next time...

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9.03.2012

The Neutral Lip



You all know how much I love le no makeup look. I have an entire chapter devoted to it in my book, Lessons from Madame Chic. The key element of le no makeup look is to look naturally beautiful in an effortless way.

My book describes three versions of le no makeup look, one of them being defined eye. If you are going to define your eyes with shadow or eyeliner (or both!) it is recommended that you wear a neutral lip, to keep your look as natural as possible (not flashy).

And while I love the neutral lip, I will admit that I have always had a bit of a hard time finding just the right shade for me. Andrea Pomerantz Lustig's book, How to Look Expensive: A Beauty Editor's Secrets to Getting Gorgeous without Breaking the Bank , recommends NARS Dolce Vita lipstick (a sheer, dusty rose), which I have tried and loved. I also found the NARS Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in Hopi (a honey beige color) to be a flattering neutral as well.

If you are unable to see my embedded video, that shows these two lipsticks and discusses a new beauty rule about lip liner, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur .

This week I would love to know... what's your favorite neutral lipstick?

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8.27.2012

New Haircut, How to Look Expensive (and Giveaway Winner!)



I recently visited Natasha Sunshine at Byu-ti Salon in Brentwood for a haircut. My hair had been feeling dull and lifeless to date and I was looking for a new direction to take my cut and style.

I always recommend bringing an image to your stylist to communicate your vision easily. This time I brought an image from the book, How to Look Expensive: A Beauty Editor's Secrets to Getting Gorgeous without Breaking the Bank by Andrea Pomerantz Lustig (which, by the way, I highly recommend!) to my hair appointment.

Watch my video above to see my new cut, hear the blow dry tip I learned from Natasha for sleek hair, and other hair related chat. If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

For more information about Byu-ti Salon, click here, or visit http://www.byu-ti.com

To check out How to Look Expensive: A Beauty Editor's Secrets to Getting Gorgeous without Breaking the Bank, click here.

Giveaway winner:

And now for the winner of the Benedetta Seaweed Bath Giveaway. The winner was chosen at random via the number generator at random.org ...

The winner is:

Laura J - Cupertino, CA aka Smilesformiles30

Congratulations! Please contact me to arrange shipment of your Seaweed Bath.

Thank you to Benedetta and thank you to all who entered this giveaway. I hope to do another great giveaway soon to give back to all of you wonderful readers. Thank you again! x


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8.20.2012

Benedetta Seaweed Bath Giveaway



Do you remember the video I did on Benedetta's Best Deodorant? I had discovered Benedetta in the Santa Monica Marketplace by my home and recorded the video after having fallen in love with their beautifully made, organic products. Since then I've gotten to know the owner of Benedetta, Julia Faller, who is a lovely woman, totally committed to her company and to producing high quality organic and biodynamic beauty products that are also earth friendly.

Recently Julia and her team sent me a pampering package to congratulate me on having my baby, which included Benedetta's amazing Seaweed Bath, Seaweed Mask and Blossom Hydrosol. These products are not only interesting and effective but innovative as well. And the great news is Benedetta has kindly offered to give away one Seaweed Bath to a reader of The Daily Connoisseur!


Benedetta has this to say about their Seaweed Bath:

This amazing bath combines three therapies for a truly indulgent, cleansing experience. Strengthening, calming and detoxifying, this Seaweed Bath is all that and so much more. Our Bath combines the effects of Balneotherapy (bathing in water hot enough as to be therapeutic), Thalassotherapy (therapy from the sea) and the power of Aromatherapy. Seaweeds are known thyroid tonics, aiding the natural processes of the body. This bath will leave your skin silky smooth. Our Bath oil is a blend of strengthening, immune enhancing and antiviral Essential Oils. Combined with the relaxing and purging effects of a hot bath, the union of these three therapies makes this Seaweed Bath a powerful, luxurious treatment.

Just this past weekend I used the Seaweed Bath again after one of those very loooong days where I felt completely exhausted and spent. After a 20 minute soak in the bath I felt rejuvenated and re-energized. I really love it and am very excited that one of you dear readers will get to try it too!

Be sure to watch my video to see the Seaweed Bath, Seaweed Mask and Blossom Hydrosol. If you are unable to see my embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

The giveaway is open to all readers who follow The Daily Connoisseur.

To enter the giveaway simply leave a comment below either on the blog or on the YouTube video telling us:

1. Where your favorite seaside retreat is (to keep with the seaweed theme, you see).

2. How you follow The Daily Connoisseur (Email subscriber, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google Reader, etc.)

3. Unless you have a very unique online handle, please leave your first name, last initial and location so as to avoid any confusion when announcing the winner.

4. To be entered into the giveaway twice, 'like' Benedetta's Facebook Page (and be sure to let me know you've done so).

The winner will be announced next week! Best of luck.

To learn more about Benedetta, click here, or visit www.benedetta.com

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8.13.2012

Le Palais des Thés Iced Tea



Le Palais des Thés, that marvelous French tea company, recently contacted me to review their all new iced tea range.


Exotic, fragrant and quite sophisticated, I am very impressed with their selection. The teas I review in my video are:

Thé du Hammam (green tea with rose, berries, orange flower, green dates—the scents that perfume the famed baths of Istanbul)

Thé des Sources (green tea with mint and bergamot)

The des Alizés (green tea with white peach, kiwi, watermelon)

Wu Long 7 Agrumes (Delicate Oolong tea, scented with Le Palais des Thés' seven citrus blend: natural extracts of lemon, lime, sweet orange, bitter orange, grapefruit, bergamot and mandarin)

If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

**Correction- Regarding the Fleur de Geisha cocktail I discuss in the video, it uses dry sparkling wine (not dry white wine and sparkling water). Here is the recipe for those interested:

Fleur de Geisha Sparkling Aperitif:
Infuse .2 oz (or three tea bags) of Fleur de Geisha tea in 10 oz. simmering water for three minutes. Be careful not to boil to avoid bitterness. Filter the leaves or remove the tea bags and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Vigorously shake the tea and .8 oz peach liqueur in a cocktail shaker. Pour into flute glasses to about half the height. Top off with chilled champagne or sparkling wine. Serves five.

And for a fun cocktail recipe using the Thé du Hammam, click here.

For more information on Le Palais des Thés click here, or visit http://us.palaisdesthes.com

FTC: The teas were sent to me by Le Palais des Thés to review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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8.10.2012

My Interview with Redbook Magazine, a Twitter Update & Chignon Thursdays

Redbook Magazine

I was recently interviewed for Redbook Magazine in a piece called Change Your Look, Change Your Life.

In the article, I discuss techniques to find your true style, present yourself beautifully to the world, and get inspired, stylistically speaking.

Twitter Update

I have changed my twitter handle to @JL_Scott . If you already follow me on twitter, there is no need to do anything as you automatically follow the new handle. For those of you who do not follow me on Twitter, check out my page! I discuss daily adventures and observations and share pictures. Which brings me to my next topic...

Chignon Thursdays
As a fun treat for those who follow me on Twitter and Facebook, I have started Chignon Thursdays (#chignonthursdays) where I tweet/ post a picture of my chignon every week (the latest look I've been experimenting with).

This week's chignon:
#chignonthursdays on Twitpic

If you have a chignon look you'd like to share, I'd love to see it! Simply use the hashtag #chignonthursdays on Twitter. Let's bring back this elegant and polished hairstyle together.


I hope you all have a marvelous weekend! I'll see you on Monday for a very special tea review... Until then!

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8.06.2012

Summer Makeup Look



Of all the seasons, summer is the most appropriate to wear le no makeup look. We want our skin to breathe and look radiant so minimal makeup is best. I've developed a very low maintenance five minute beauty routine for summer mornings.

If you are unable to see the embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Makeup used in the video:

Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer in ‘Bisque’

Laura Mercier Secret Camouflage in ‘SC-4’

Sephora Airbrush Concealer brush

Anastasia Eyebrow Powder in ‘Medium Ash’

NARS cream blush in ‘South Beach’ (they no longer make the one shown in my video, but NARS The Multiple is the same product).

Chanel Inimitable Intense mascara

Chanel Lip Gloss shade 46

Perfume: Stella Sheer (My Stella Sheer is limited edition from last season and no longer available. This summer's limited Stella is Stella Summer Rose).

Dress by Rebecca Taylor

FTC: All products used in this video were purchased by me.

This week I would love to know... What is your summer makeup look?



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7.30.2012

How to Deal With Rude People




Always forgive your enemies - nothing annoys them so much.
-Oscar Wilde

Not that we are trying to annoy anyone, but this quote from Oscar Wilde really sums up my philosophy on dealing with rude people.

This week's video was heavily requested. We live in a world now where rudeness is more prevalent than we would like and the only way to overcome it is to be extra courteous, polite and kind. To lead by example.

Of course this is not always easy... watch my video to hear a recent anecdote of mine where I failed to take my own advice (we all have off days!)

If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

So this week I would love to know... how do you deal with rude people?


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7.27.2012

Madame Chic in Australia, The Art of Packing and 10 Item Wardrobe Update


Madame Chic Down Under
One of the fun things about having Lessons from Madame Chic available in other countries are the different book covers. Here we have the cover for Australia and New Zealand, which will be published by HarperCollins Australia and released on November 6, 2012. I just love its vibrancy. Isn't it fun?

The Art of Packing
I've received a lot of requests over the last few months to address packing for summer trips. My one bit of advice to you is to pack light. You can always buy something you need while away (and that is more fun anyway!). But it is never chic to tote around an excess of luggage (trust me- that's what I did in France). Along with packing a capsule wardrobe scaled for your trip, it is important to mention the art of packing your suitcase. I came across the very subject on Louis Vuitton's website and thought this interactive tutorial was just the best.

10 Item Wardrobe Collages
On Monday's post I mentioned the 10 Item Wardrobe collages on Polyvore that are celebrating the upcoming release of Lessons from Madame Chic. Unfortunately the link to the collection of collages was not included. I am including it here. Aren't they fabulous? I am just loving the different interpretations of the 10 Item Wardrobe.

I hope you all have a marvelous weekend!

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7.23.2012

Author Website, Tinted Moisturizer and 10 Item Wardrobes



Author Website

Before this post begins I would like to share with you my newly designed author website: www.jenniferlscott.com
On the new site you will be able to easily access news and events related to the book and blog, check out my latest videos and leave guestbook comments. You can also sign up for a seasonal newsletter I will send out to readers. I do hope you enjoy the new design which was created by AuthorBytes.

Tinted Moisturizer
During the summer months I generally like to use a lightweight tinted moisturizer for sheer coverage. It seems to be the easiest solution for my warm weather le no makeup look. In the past I've enjoyed using the Hourglass brand (which I still love) but I've recently decided to look for another tinted moisturizer to add to my arsenal.

This all led me to Sephora to do some research. So far I am just loving the Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer (I wear the shade bisque) that so many of you recommended, but I also tried Smashbox BB Cream as well as Amore Pacific.

If you are unable to see the video above where I share my beauty tip for buying tinted moisturizer, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or check out my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

10 Item Wardrobe Collages

In anticipation of Lessons from Madame Chic's release this November, a group of ladies have started their own discussion about the 10 Item Wardrobe on Polyvore, led by BusyVP. I just love that people are getting excited about this concept. Check out BusyVP's 10 Item Wardrobe for fall and the creative collages on 10 Item Wardrobes and join in on the discussion...


This week I would love to know... what is your favorite tinted moisturizer?

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7.16.2012

Wear More Color (New Dress)



After watching the recent Diamond Jubilee celebration that took place in London and (as always) fawning over what the Duchess of Cambridge wore, I became newly inspired to introduce more color to my capsule wardrobe. She just knows how to pull off color beautifully and can wear anything from deep red, to subtle neutrals to bright green.

I recently purchased this bright green dress by Amanda Uprichard to inject some vibrant color into my wardrobe. It's a lovely, lightweight silk piece that has a bit of a forgiving silhouette as I am still losing the baby weight.

If you are unable to see the embedded video above where I show you my new dress, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

As a side note, for all of you Duchess fans, you must check out the blog What Kate Wore to always get a comprehensive post on her elegant style. (Thank you Cashmere Librarian for recommending WKW so long ago!)

So this week I would love to know... how are you with wearing color?


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7.09.2012

On Penmanship



I have a confession to make...

My handwriting is atrocious.

I used to have lovely handwriting when I was in high school. It must have been all of those handwritten papers. But when I went to college the computer became my main mode for writing and has remained so ever since. And yes, as a professional writer I write a lot. Every single day, as a matter of fact, my fingers adroitly cruise along my keyboard.

There seems to be little to no need to actually write longhand anymore. So when I find myself needing to do so- when I write letters, for example, I am absolutely horrified by what has become my handwriting.

This saddens me. Not only because I would expect a writer to have lovely handwriting, but because I am a daily connoisseur and like so many of you, I like beautiful things- that includes penmanship!

So I am on a course to better myself. I came across a really interesting article by Nick Rowlands called, 8 Easy Tips to Improve Your Handwriting, and thought he had a lot of very fascinating, connoisseur-like tips to share.

When writing about why you might want to improve your handwriting, Mr. Rowlands states:

“Perhaps (like me) you want to write more legibly, so your notes don’t look like a spider has been dipped in poisonous ink and then violently convulsed itself to death across your page.”


Apart from finding this hilarious, I sadly found it more than an accurate portrayal of how I write!

He continues:

You can’t produce elegant, free-flowing script if you are hunched up over the only corner of your desk not littered with empty coffee cups, half eaten sandwiches, and rogue power cables.

Now my desk isn’t that bad, but it’s not exactly a Mecca of orderliness either. As soon as I realized this I de-cluttered my desk immediately.

He also states that posture is key as is grip of the pen as well as what type of pen you use.

And most importantly, one must practice, practice practice!

So I am going on a quest to improve my dire penmanship. De-cluttering, good posture, a relaxed grip and practice. These are all things I can do. I’ll let you know how it goes.

In the meantime I would love to know… how is your penmanship?

If you are unable to see my embedded video above, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

To read Nick Rowland's article 8 Easy Tips to Improve Your Handwriting, click here.

Thank you to ItaliaGal for nominating The Daily Connoisseur for the very inspiring blog award.

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7.02.2012

Jolie Laide (and I'm on Facebook)



Happy Independence Day!

Before this week's post begins I'm happy to share with you that I (finally) have an author Facebook page. I do hope you will 'like' it to get the latest news and updates from my blog and books. Click here to visit my new page or visit: http://www.facebook.com/JenniferLScottAuthor

As this week is somewhat of a holiday I will go light on the blogging but wanted to share my follow up video with you that has further thoughts on the concept of jolie laide. I received a great response from last week's post on the subject and had a few requests to discuss it more.

Discovering the French concept of jolie laide (ugly pretty) was a really important aspect of stepping into my femininity. It was the moment where I decided to embrace all of my 'imperfections' and learn how to make the best of my features.

It's a wonderful concept to teach our daughters as well- that we do not need to fit into a certain glossy magazine mold in order to be beautiful...

If you are unable to see my above embedded video, click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur. I am whispering in the video as I did not want to wake up Baby Connoisseur no. 2. (watch to see how that goes...)

Also, thank you to blogger Vintage Bel for featuring me in her Glamorous Mum series this week. Click here to see her article.

I hope you all have a wonderful week with your families. See you soon!

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6.25.2012

Wallis Simpson and The Concept of Jolie Laide



I finally watched Madonna's film, WE (rented it On Demand) about the life of Wallis Simpson, Duchess of Windsor. I was really excited to see this film as I wanted to know more about how Wallis and the King of England first met. The parts about Wallis were beautifully done and Andrea Riseborough did a marvelous job portraying her, but I found the modern storyline woven into the script very distracting. In short, I didn't learn as much about Wallis Simpson as I would have liked.

Because the film left me with so many unanswered questions about her life I read the biography, That Woman: The Life of Wallis Simpson, Duchess of Windsor by Anne Sebba. This is a very well written, interesting biography that highlights the major plot points of Wallis' life.


The thing that intrigues me about Wallis is that she was what the French would call jolie laide, which literally translates to ugly pretty. She was not a classically beautiful woman, but made the best of what she had by dressing beautifully and grooming impeccably.

I love the idea of jolie laide because it suggests that we do not need to be cookie cutter beauties to be attractive. Suddenly features like tiny eyes, a jutting chin or a prominent nose could actually be deemed attractive. That these features need not be 'corrected' by plastic surgery in order to be considered beautiful. The motto of jolie laide is 'work with what you've got', and that is very refreshing indeed.

A great article called 'The Unfairest of Them All' that appeared in the New York Times back in 2005 gives a great perspective on jolie laide. To read the article click here.

If you are unable to see my video above where I discuss Wallis Simpson and the concept of jolie laide click here, look in the sidebar of this blog, or visit my channel: www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur



Check out That Woman: The Life of Wallis Simpson, Duchess of Windsor on Amazon.com by clicking here.

Image courtesy of nndb.com

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