June 17, 2022

weekend round up

How is it possible that it’s the weekend again? Here we are almost halfway through the year, so I thought it was about time that I share a weekend round up feature. It’s been a while, so here goes with a few of my favorite things.


Let’s start with this pretty bunch of flowers that I collected from the garden. I was working on a fall project for Cottages and Bungalows and needed some kind of autumn floral statement.

This big handful of blooms from the garden may not be wildflowers, but they sure give off that vibe. This is just a bunch of sage, pink grasses, nandina and yellow aquilegia and are so perfect for this big ironstone pitcher that I love so much.


After photographing my fall project, I moved the flowers out of the way and set them on these books in front of the window. The sunlight coming in from the garden was so pretty, I had to capture this moment.

Sometimes, it's those unexpected things that are so pretty. I was putting off going to the store to buy sunflowers, and then just went out and gathered what I thought would be a sentimental autumn look.

And speaking of this fall photo shoot, I wanted to share with you how I simply styled this little wooden shadow box. I used it to add some texture to the background of my pictures.

I found it recently at my neighbor’s estate sale. She said she stripped the finish off and never finished the project, but I love it just the way it is. 

A few of my favorite little vintage stoneware crocks fill out the cubbies. I'm not sure if I have room for this piece as a permanent display, but I think it'll be fun to style it seasonally. This little gem is one of my most favorite finds ever!


Summer essentials for sure! These two Vagabond House items are my most recent additions to my coastal collection from them.


First up is the Sailboat Decanter made with beautiful and heavy Italian glass and topped with the cutest pewter sailing sloop finial.


This decanter style actually comes in three different shapes and sizes, and I’m kind of obsessed with collecting all three to display on our bar cart.


The cocktail glasses you see here are a pair of Nautilus Double Old-Fashioned Glasses. Check out the base of these beauties. That’s a solid pewter base with nautilus shell motifs circling around the whole glass.


I think these would make beautiful votive candle holders as well! I’ll share more on the decanter and the glassware soon.


This red, white and blue table I set recently features a tablecloth and napkins by Solino Home. This Navy-Blue Capri Stripe Tablecloth is so versatile, I styled it three different ways, using three different Solino Home linen napkins.


I’ll be sharing all three of these looks very soon, but today I wanted to highlight these adorable napkin rings.


I just got a set of 12 of these Rattan Napkin Rings on Amazon, after searching high and love for something that was chic and that have wonderful texture.


Some of the ones on the market look so cheap, but these are exactly what I was looking for. I love how they look with my favorite Serena & Lily raffia placemats and my Serena & Lily light fixture.

Lastly, I want to share a couple of pages from Country Living UK magazine that I recently spotted. This red, white and blue little baking scene has all the hallmarks of my style and the things I love. 

The gingham, the china and the little stoneware crock are some of the things I love most. This was styled by Alaina Binks.

Also from Country Living UK, this home and bike epitomizes the perfect summer day. I hope to take a leisurely ride on my bike this weekend. It’s been too long!


Happy weekend to you all!


ciao! fabiana



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June 14, 2022

3 desserts and housewives hosting tips

Today it’s all about three desserts and a couple of my favorite go-to items that I spotted in unusual places. First let’s talk desserts…

I have a small apple tree in the backyard that I planted years ago, and it produces a massive amount of fruit.

The variety is called “Anna” and it’s a low-chill type of apple, perfect for our southern California climate.


We start getting apples at the beginning of June, and what’s great about this tree is that we’ll get two or three more crops later in the year, so we have apples all the way through fall.


In addition to just being a great eating apple, it’s also a wonderful baking apple. One of my favorite recipes is one I found from Martha Stewart, an Apple Galette.


The crust, aka in French as Pate Brisee, is so easy to make in the food processor and has the most delicious, fresh, flaky flavor. You can make this ahead of time and store it in the freezer for when your ready to use it.


This recipe yields two galettes, and you can substitute all kinds of fruits with this technique. In fact, my neighbor just gave me a huge bag of plums from her tree, so a Plum Galette is next on the agenda.


I experimented a little with this recipe and added a glaze of Bonne Maman raspberry jam on top when the apple galette was almost finished baking.


I just heated up a little jam in the microwave and brushed it over the apples to keep everything juicy.   

Here's just a quick snapshot taken with my phone...

Apple Galette by Martha Stewart

Serves 10 to 12


·   1 recipe Test Kitchen's Favorite Pate Brisee

·   4 teaspoons unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting

·   2 pounds apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch wedges (6 cups total)

·   1/2 cup granulated sugar

·   1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

·   3/4 teaspoon kosher salt (we use Diamond crystal)

·   1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

·   1 large egg, lightly beaten

·   Coarse or fine sanding sugar, for sprinkling


Preheat oven to 375°F. Remove chilled dough from refrigerator, unwrap, and place on a lightly floured work surface. Let stand about 10 minutes (to soften slightly). Bang on dough with a rolling pin (to begin flattening and soften a bit more). 


Dust top and pin with flour, position pin on center of disk, and begin rolling dough away from you. Give disk a quarter-turn and roll again. Continue turning and rolling in this manner until you have a 13-inch round with an even 1/8-inch thickness. Transfer to a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Refrigerate while making filling.


In a large bowl, combine apples, granulated sugar, flour, lemon juice, salt, and cinnamon. Spread filling evenly over dough, leaving a 1 1/2-inch border. Fold edges of dough up and over apples, leaving most of fruit exposed and overlapping dough as needed. Brush dough with beaten egg; sprinkle with sanding sugar. Refrigerate 15 minutes.


Bake until crust is golden, apples are tender, and juices are bubbling in center, 1 hour to 1 hour and 5 minutes. Using a pastry brush, spread some of juices from center of galette over apples.


Transfer sheet to a wire rack; let cool 10 minutes. Using a large spatula, loosen galette from parchment and move away from any released juices (so it doesn’t stick to parchment as it cools). Slide galette (still on parchment) onto rack and let cool. Serve warm or room temperature.


Banana Pudding Pie

Just spotted in Southern Living magazine is this Banana Pudding Pie recipe. Once you’ve had Banana Cream Pie or Banana Pudding, you can’t stop thinking of it!


We occasionally get a really delicious Banana Cream Pie at The Apple Pan in West Los Angeles, which is out of this world.


I had to share this recipe with you all today, just in case you need to make a super scrumptious pie for your next gathering… or maybe we don’t’ need a gathering to make it. I certainly don’t.

Banana Pudding Pie


Brown Butter-Vanilla Wafer Crust

·   6 tablespoons unsalted butter

·   1½ cups finely ground vanilla wafer crumbs (from about 50 vanilla wafers)

·   ¼ cup granulated sugar

·   ½ teaspoon kosher salt

·   ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

Filling and Toppings

·   1½ cups whole milk

·   ½ cup heavy whipping cream

·   ½ cup granulated sugar

·   ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt

·   4 large egg yolks

·   ¼ cup cornstarch

·   2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for greasing pie plate

·   1½ teaspoons vanilla extract

·   4 medium bananas, divided

·   Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream

·   Crushed vanilla wafers


Preheat oven to 325°F. Melt unsalted butter in a small saucepan over medium. Cook, whisking constantly, until butter reaches a deep golden brown and smells nutty, about 3 to 5 minutes. Stir together brown butter, finely ground vanilla wafer crumbs, granulated sugar, kosher salt, and ground nutmeg in a bowl.

Lightly grease a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate with butter, and press crust mixture into bottom and up sides of prepared pie plate. Bake until golden brown and firm, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven; let cool on a wire rack while preparing filling.

Whisk together milk, cream, sugar, and salt in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium, whisking often, until steaming, about 5 minutes (do not let milk mixture boil). Remove from heat. Whisk together egg yolks and cornstarch in a medium heatproof bowl until smooth. Using a ladle, slowly drizzle ½ cup steaming milk mixture into egg mixture, whisking constantly until combined. Slowly drizzle egg mixture into remaining warmed milk mixture in saucepan, stirring constantly until combined. Cook milk mixture over medium, whisking constantly, until mixture thickens and begins to simmer (about 200°F), about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove saucepan from heat; whisk in butter and vanilla. Transfer pudding to a medium bowl, and cover with plastic wrap, pressing plastic wrap directly on pudding surface to prevent a skin from forming. Let pudding stand 15 minutes.

Cut 3 of the bananas into ½-inch-thick slices; arrange slices in bottom of cooled crust. Top with pudding; spread into an even layer using a small offset spatula. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing plastic wrap directly on pudding surface to prevent a skin from forming, and chill until set, at least 2 hours or up to 12 hours. 

Just before serving, remove pie from refrigerator. Cut remaining banana into ½-inch-thick slices. Pipe Vanilla Bean Whipped Cream on pie. Arrange banana slices as desired, sprinkle pie with crushed vanilla wafers, and serve.

Also in Southern Living is another banana recipe that’s a fun take on Banana Pudding. Nilla Wafers are the key to any yummy banana pudding. And aren’t these so cute too?


Spotted on Instagram this week… Our absolute favorite restaurant in Hilton Head is Lowcountry Produce.


We travel to Hilton Head once a year, and always have breakfast and lunch at Lowcountry Produce. I’m talking 4-5 times a week.


Not only is the food delicious, but it’s also has such a nice vibe inside, and it’s so close to our house, which makes it so amazing. We can even ride our bikes there.


What’s so fun to see on Instagram is that they’ve recently started carrying Pacific & Rose tablecloths and tea towels in their indoor market shop. 

You know what a great affinity I have for Pacific & Rose, so it’s such a match made in heaven for me.


I can’t wait to visit later this summer and check out all their amazing linens, home-baked goods, and beautiful paintings they carry. 

They also have an even more beautiful location in Beaufort that I’d love to visit too.

Now on to some real realness… Haha, if you know me, you know that I’m a Real Housewives fan, and have been for years, so while watching the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills last week, I spotted a real gem.

While entertaining Diana in her home, Kyle sets out a beautiful charcuterie tray and my eyes zeroed in on this beauty right away.

I recognized it as on of Vagabond House's gorgeous wooden trays with pewter olive branch handles! 


Known as Vagabond House Olive Handle Serving Tray, it’s one of the more beautiful items that Vagabond House makes. 

They even have a pretty rectangular version of this tray


I can’t get enough of this beautiful wooden serving tray and the way Kyle so effortlessly uses it with cheeses, crackers, grapes, and white ramekins filled with a variety of nuts.



This is such a versatile piece for anyone, and such a wonderful tray to have on hand for last minute entertaining occasions.   

I hope you enjoyed the recipes I shared today, in addition to the pretty table linens and wooden cheese tray I love so much. 

Baking is next on my agenda, and I’m off to get started on a yummy banana treat!


ciao! fabiana



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