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Miss Sophisticate Luxury Living At Its Simplest.

Mother’s Day Brunch

The Darling Hostess: tabletop decor, easy recipes & more for entertaining

Wine tasting in Santa Barbara

Plan a visit to the beautiful Sunstone Winery

MAY 2014


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Miss Sophisticate MAY 2014

BONJOUR pg. 8 Editor’s Note pg. 10 InstaMoments Lookback pg. 11 Film & Print pg. 12 Blogger Spotlight: Maria Jose Abad

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Miss Sophisticate fashion pg. 14 Inspired By: Kate Middleton

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pg. 18 Get the Look: The White Shirt Dress

Food pg. 20 Local Spot: Watermarc pg. 22 Mother’s Day Brunch + Recipe 5

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Miss Sophisticate Design pg. 28 Home Tour: Monika Hibbs from The Doctor’s Closet pg. 32 House Hunting: Malibu Beach House

Travel pg. 34 Wine Tasting in Santa Barbara 6

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Editor’s Note

Editor’s Note

This May is an exciting month because it marks the launch of Miss

Sophisticate magazine, a monthly online publication for women interested in fashion, food, design, and travel. Ever since I joined the online blogging community, I knew I wanted to make an interactive magazine that would become a resource for all things chic and sophisticated. While luxury living is no new concept, sucessfully applying it to our daily lives is still something many of us are trying to accomplish as we grow into the women we aspire to be. Each month, I’ll be sharing ideas and stories on ways that will hopefully inspire you to incorporate luxury living into your everyday life. To start, in this issue you’ll find out how to design a beautiful Mother’s Day brunch, including table setting ideas and a delicious recipe you can use to impress Mom. Mother’s Day is very special to me because my mother is someone that I not only love dearly, but she is also someone that I look up to on a daily basis. Therefore, creating the perfect Mother’s Day for her is really important to me. I also wanted to make sure that you hear about the Sunstone Winery in Santa Barbara’s stunning wine country. The place makes for a beautiful day trip to enjoy with family and friends. Maybe you can even give your mother a wine-tasting session there as a Mother’s Day gift. In any case, you must plan a visit. I hope you guys enjoy this new publication and stick around for next month!

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Photo credit: habituallychic.blogspot.com


APRIL InstaMoments A lookback at last month’s Instagram snapshots.

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Film & Print

Miss Sophisticate is

reading... “The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry” by Kathleen Flinn. In this novel, Flinn shares her love story

of food and Paris. As a corporate executive, Flinn had always dreamed about going to culinary school in Paris. It wasn’t until she was laid off that she decided to follow her dreams, pick up her bags and attend Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France. Her daily accounts of culinary classes, along with the discoveries she makes in her new hometown, make for a charming, funny, and fantasy-inducing account of life in Paris.

Miss Sophisticate is

watching... The Other Woman Starring Cameron Diaz, Leslie Mann,

and Kate Upton, this wickedly funny comedy tells the tale some women know all too well: the cheating husband. In this case, he’s also a cheating boyfriend. In an odd series of circumstances, the three women that are all involved with the same man become friends and devise a plan of revenge no man could see coming. It’s the perfect “chick flick” to take your girlfriends to and get a good laugh. 11

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Blogger Spotlight

Blogger spotlight A quick glimpse of the fashionista behind

MARIA ON POINT

Name Maria Jose Abad blog Maria On Point Age 29

t i s i V g o l B r e H ! e r e H

Current city Washington, D.C. Job Qorvis MSLGROUP position Account Supervisor personal style Sophisticated, preppy, clean & feminine fashion icon Audrey Hepburn one item every woman Must have The perfect pumps a favorite quote to live by: “It’s not the clothes that you wear

but how you wear them.” 12

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Blogger Spotlight

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Inspired By

Kate Middleton The Princess has been a fashion icon since Day 1 of enterting the spotlight. Her effortlessly preppy wardrobe will inspire you to don your own navy blazers and oxfords for an equally sophisticated style. 3

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(1) J.Crew Navy Blazer; (2) J.Crew Button Up; (3) Gucci Wayfarer Sunglasses (4) Kate Spade Flats; (5) Everlane Petra Bag


Inspired By 6

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(6) Burberry Check Scarf; (7) The Dressing Room Belt; (8) Burberry Trench; (9) Henri Bendel iPad Carry All


Visit the Etsy Shop


Photo via: Emerson Fry

Photo of: Leandra Medine Photo by: Diego Zuko Photo via: Harper’s Bazaar

Spring Trend: The White Shirt Dress Why it’s a Trend: This spring, celebrities and fashion bloggers are donning the white shirt dress for an easy-to-wear, stylish look. A shirt dress is an attractive buy because it makes for a no-brainer outfit. It’s also a very comfortable piece that can go from a casual day look to a more put-together evening look.

Photo of: Olivia Palermo Photo credit: Getty Images Photo via: Glamour

How to wear it: Put your stamp on the dress by pairing it with statement jewelry or eye-catching accessories, such as bright wedges or a printed handbag.


get the look

Top Picks for the White Shirt Dress:

Accessorize; $52.50

Acne Studios; $310.00

Splendid; $160.00

Rebecca Taylor; $295.00

Derek Lam; $395.00

Rick Owens; $529.88

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Local Restaurant

Watermarc in Laguna Beach, California There’s good food and then there’s to indulge in fried goat cheese with honey great food. At the Watermarc, you get the latter and more. In Southern California, it’s easy to find fantastic tacos or delicious fish ‘n’ chips. This holds especially true in the coastal town of Laguna Beach. What can be rare to find are restaurants that serve true “gourmet” cuisine. Gourmet food isn’t just delicious food; it’s food that provides you with an experience. Gourmet food is made with passion and creativity. And that’s exactly what Chef and Owner Marc Cohen does at the Watermarc. Perhaps one of the best features of the Watermarc menu are the grazing plates. You won’t find your typical cheese platter of brie and cured sausage. Instead, you can choose

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and apples, or homemade ricotta with organic honeycomb and warm bread. A favorite is the flatbread, made with caramelized onions, melted goat cheese, spinach, and figs. It’s positively scrumptious. Equally wonderful are the cocktails. Drinks like the Strawberry-Basil Hard Lemonade are made with the perfect balance of juice and alcohol so that drinks go down smoothly. Make sure you reserve your seats ahead of time, or beat the dinner crowds and pop in early for their 4-6 p.m. Happy Hour, which offers 1/2 off burgers and discounted drinks. www.watermarcrestaurant.com 448 S. Coast Hwy, Laguna Beach, CA 92651 (949) 376-6272


Mother’s Day Brunch Ideas for Creating a beautiful spread

Mothers are very special people in our lives. From the moment we’re born,

they love us, nurture us, care for us, and help shape us into the adults we become. It’s no wonder then that a special holiday was made devoted solely to them. Some people choose to take their mothers out to a nice restaurant for breakfast, but this can require a brave (and patient) soul since restaurants are packed with guests on the celebratory day. Instead, others choose to host their own mother’s day breakfast or brunch at home. But just because you’re celebrating at home doesn’t mean your mother shouldn’t be pampered like the queen she ought to be that day. Hosting a brunch at home can especially be a wonderful option if you have more than one mother (or mother figure) you’re celebrating, such as dear grandmothers or close aunts. Creating a gorgeous brunch spread only requires some tasteful touches and delicious recipes. For your brunch theme, you could go with a white and gold color

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scheme, as displayed. White creates a clean and airy aesthetic, which can be a rarity for most moms with kids. A white table cover in this case is a perfect backdrop for making the colorful food items and flower arrangements really pop and make a statement. Use gold china plates and flatware to elevate the elegance and sophistication of the table setting. If you don’t own gold chinaware, many party stores carry goldbrimmed plastic plates that look just like the real deal. Like any mother’s day spread, beautiful flowers are necessary. Choose different types and shades of flowers that vary in 24

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size and shape (i.e. volumunous hydrangeas + tall snapdragons).To go with the bright flowers, prepare equally vivid food items, like berry parfaits, mimosas, frittatas, and an assorted array of pastries. Some of the items, like the O.J. and pastries, can be store-bought, but make sure to make the staple items, like the frittatas and cinnamon crumble french toast (recipe on the following page) yourself to ensure quality taste and authenticity. The final touch can be a beautiful D.I.Y. menu card, created with the easy-to-use Makr app. It’s restaurantstyle dining, right at home!


Don’t Forget the Music!

Play classics like Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin to go along with your elegant and sophisticated brunch spread. Both styles of music create feel-good vibes while maintaining relaxation and restraint to match the atmosphere. Listen to “Dancing Cheek to Cheek” by Frank Sinatra


Cinnamon Crumble French Toast adapted by The Pioneer Woman

INGREDIENTS (makes 4): • 1/2 a loaf of crusty bread • 4 eggs • 1 cup milk • 1/4 cup heavy cream • 1/4 cup sugar

• 1/4 cup brown sugar • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract for topping: • 1/4 cup flour

• 1/4 cup brown sugar • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon • dash of salt • dash of nutmeg • 1/2 stick cold butter, cubed

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Cut bread into cubes, or tear apart into small pieces. Place bread chunks in a large casserole-type dish. In a large bowl, whisk your eggs, milk, heavy cream, white and brown sugar, and vanilla extract together until smooth. Evenly pour batter over bread. Cover with plastic wrap tightly and place in fridge overnight. 2. Create your topping for your french toast by whisking the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and nutmeg together in a large bowl. Drop in your cubed butter and use your hands (or pastry cutter) to create a crumbled dough. Refrigerate in an airtight container. 3. The next morning, pour the bread chunks into individual ramekins (or a greased muffin tin). Place a spoonful of cinnamon crumbs on top, then bake at 350°F for 45 minutes. 27

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Home Decor

The Doctor’s Closet A look inside the blogger’s beautiful Canadian home. All photography taken by and courtesy of Tracey Ayton www.TraceyAytonPhotography.com

Designing a home shouldn’t look so easy, but that’s exactly what Monika Hibbs,

the creator of the online blog, The Doctor’s Closet, and online store, Shopbymonika, does. Hibbs does what every woman dreams of doing, creating a sanctuary that is every bit relaxing as it is gorgeous and magazine-worthy. In fact, Hibbs’s home has actually been featured in national magazines and design blogs for its effortless blend of polished, contemporary pieces with traditional, family-friendly design. Hibbs is not only an example of someone who has created a beautiful home for herself and her family, but she is also someone who has done it without any interior design schooling or professional design experience of her own. The reality is that before Hibbs got into blogging or curating a fabulous collection of items for her shop, she was practicing medicine at the time, hence the inspired blog name. Therefore, to help bring her vision and creativity to life, she enlisted the help of Stephanie Jean Design. Hibbs’s design taste is a mix of Carrie and Charlotte from Sex and the City, which is incidentally her favorite movie interior. Items like her sleek, lucite counter stool stools

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propped up against traditional white, marble counters are a perfect example. Hibbs also doesn’t shy away from bold design. Take her decision to do floral wallpaper in one of her bathrooms. Wallpaper is something most people fear and few are brave enough (or talented enough) to pull off, just as Hibbs so wonderfully does. Her feminine style extends to the bedroom, a room so pretty you’d think you were at a five-star hotel. The tufted headboard plus bed frame is a gem she found at Restoration Hardware, one of her favorite interior decor stores for finding

quality furnishings that appeal to both her feminine style and her husband’s masculine one. In fact, Hibbs balances out most of the girly items in her home by using natural or weathered elements. For example, Hibbs makes sure to decorate her mirrored nighstand with a wood lamp base and mercury-glass flower vase. Hibbs has great taste and knows how to emulate it throughout her home. She’s just as talented with her blog and online shop, so if you’re interested in learning more about her or seeing more of her work, make sure you visit both. visit www.TheDoctorsCloset.com or www.shopbymonika.com 31

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MALIBU BEACH HOUSE Malibu, California, United States (Images courtesy of Sotheby’s)

If you’re like most Pinterest users, then you

probably have your dream house all planned out on your own elaborate board. Looking through people’s “home” boards, you’ll find what’s been coined, “Real Estate Heaven.” It’s basically a term used to represent magnificent, out-of-this-world, only-in-our-fantasy style homes that most of us dream about living in one day. This gorgeous Malibu beach house definitely fits that bill with its stunning ocean views and perfect blend of European chic meets California contemporary. This house has got everything you could want in a house: a gourmet chef’s kitchen, cozy living spaces, sweeping views from almost every room, outdoor entertaining areas, and a giant pool to take a dip in should you need a refresher. So, it’s really no surprise that this home is said to be reminiscent of a European villa because, after all, wouldn’t it just be an absolute vacation to live here? But this dream house will definitely cost you more than a Euro trip; it’s priced at $23,750,000. But hey, that’s why they call it a “dream” house, right? For more information about this property, please visit: www.SothebysHomes.com, or call the listing agent James Whalen at (310) 435-6775.


SunStone Winery

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any people enjoy traveling to Europe because of the beautiful architecture and old-world feel of European cities. It doesn’t come as a shocker then that most people who visit the Sunstone Winery fall in love with the gorgeous establishment. Driving through the entrance gates, you’re greeted with rows and rows of grapes, making it clear that you’re indeed at a winery. Then, just like something out of a movie, you’ll drive up to an estate that looks like it belongs in the fields of Provence. With the lavendar flowers blowing in the breeze straight ahead of you, you’ll be wondering if you really are, by some chance, in the 34

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A European Dream in Santa Barbara Wine Country

French countryside. There are also many picnic tables with umbrellas for you to wine and dine at. After you grab a glass of wine or complete a round of wine-tasting, enjoy your premium grape juice with whatever basket of goodies you decide to bring with you. Staples like cheese, crackers, and olives are always yummy to munch on with wine. There is also a large grass area that you can picnic on if you want be a little more relaxed. The setting and views are breathtaking, so there’s plenty to take in once you sit down. Make sure you try out the winery’s wine jelly samples, along with their vinegar and oils - they’re delicious! 125 N Refugio Rd, Santa Ynez, CA 93460 (805) 688-9463


Au Revoir, mes Amis

Miss Sophisticate | May 2014  
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