Have a lovely weekend

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Hope you have something lovely planned for the weekend! I’m hoping to do a fair bit of reading and chilling as I head away on a girly break to Donegal. Here are some links I’ve been bookmarking this week:

 “The stumbler doesn’t build her life by being better than others, but by being better than she used to be.” Really lovely piece about creating a ‘moral bucket list’.

This Medium feature on being a “full stack employee” makes me want to upskill in every direction.

Kazuo Ishiguro, who wrote the amazing Never Let Me Go, talks about his favourite books.

10 handy household items that can improve your food photography.

 Where has this been all my life? No more having too much/too little spaghetti. 

“I’m far too young to sit on the sidelines and kvetch about kids today and their shiny new gadgets.” Saying yes to exciting new tech (aka – I want an Apple Watch!) .

Ever wondered how many people are in space right now? Now you know. [via Ellie]

[top pic]

Blue skies and blossoms

Blue skies + blossoms | nathalie.ie

Blue skies + blossoms | nathalie.ie

If I’m still taking pictures at 90 (and I hope that I am), no doubt I’ll still be as excited at a shot of pink blossoms against a blue sky.  

Blue skies + blossoms | nathalie.ie

Blue skies + blossoms | nathalie.ie

Egg and avocado breakfast tacos recipe

Egg and avocado breakfast tacos | nathalie.ie

This is my new favourite breakfast. I’d been craving something Mexican and eggy and concocted these breakfast tacos based on what we had around the house, but I loved them so much I thought I’d share the recipe. 

When the warm earthiness of the beans mixes with the gooey yum of the egg, and the creaminess of the avocado and the zingy freshness of the tomatoes and coriander… heaven.  

Egg and avocado breakfast tacos | nathalie.ie

First, a few things make this truly yum: proper tacos, and proper refried beans. You could give it a go with supermarket tortillas; thing is, they’re made with flour, and tacos are made from corn, so – not to sound like a taco snob (which I totally am btw) – the flavour is just completely different. We get ours from lovely Lily Ramirez who runs My Mexican Shop. She also does amazing giant bags of the most delicious corn tortilla chips.

The second thing that make this dish great is refried beans. I have a lovely recipe my mum gave me, but, when I went to grab a tin of kidney beans from the cupboard on Sunday morning I spotted a tin of La Sierra beans first and well, I just got a bit lazy, so I’ll share that recipe some other time.

If making these breakfast tacos for a gang, have bowls with chopped coriander, tomatoes, and sliced avocado on the table before serving up. A splash of hot salsa is a great addition too (I love the home-made Tapatío sauce that Mero Mero sell in their market in Temple Bar on Saturdays and always have a jar of La Valentina around too).

Meat lovers could add in some finely chopped fried chorizo, and you could easily leave out the cheese too if you want to make it that little bit healthier. I’d love to hear if you decide to give it a go!

Egg and avocado breakfast tacos
Serves 2
Tasty egg and avocado breakfast tacos topped with tomato, coriander, and cheese, served with refried beans.
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Ingredients
  1. 2 corn tacos
  2. 2 eggs
  3. 1/2 avocado, sliced
  4. 1 tomato, roughly chopped
  5. Handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
  6. 1 tablespoon of refried beans
  7. Handful of mild cheddar, grated
Instructions
  1. Get two pans on the go. In one, crack in your eggs and get them going.
  2. Plop a few tablespoons of the refried beans into a bowl and warm them in the microwave.
  3. Warm the tacos on both sides in a hot, dry pan.
  4. While they're still in the pan, spoon a little of the warmed refried beans onto each taco.
  5. Slide the fried eggs out of their pan and place one on top of each taco.
  6. Top with the chopped tomato, avocado and sprinkle in some cheese.
  7. Let the cheese melt a little before sliding the tacos onto a plate.
  8. Add some chopped coriander and serve with a wedge of lime and some hot sauce.
nathalie.ie | photos and finds for the creative and curious http://nathalie.ie/blog/

Credenza update

Mid century sideboard, Dublin | nathalie.ie

Quick update to happily say… we got a credenza! You may recall me going on about my search for one in my post on where to find good mid century furniture in Dublin

Well, last week, Geoff from Kirk Modern got in touch to tell me about a gorgeous Danish sideboard that had come his way. Featuring lovely clean, simple lines and unfussy finishes, it was exactly what we were after. It was super exciting I must admit, as it’s the first proper piece of furniture Ben and I have bought together.

iPhone pic above of it just after it got delivered (out of shot: me giddily jumping up and down). I’ll post a few proper pics once I’m done styling it up (aka figuring out how to hide a ton of cables.)

You might also like: 3 (Rental-Friendly) Interiors Trends I’m Loving Right Now.

Weekend round up + celebrating Record Store Day

Record collections | nathalie.ie

Hope you had a lovely weekend! After a late, coffee-fuelled finish at work Friday evening, I took Saturday very, very easy. To celebrate Record Store Day, Ben and I popped into Tower Records, where I picked up a lovely 7″ limited edition vinyl of Palomino, Gemma Hayes’ new track and Ben nabbed a total classic, The Beatles’ Abbey Road.

Ever since B got me a gorgeous turntable for Christmas (the Philips OTT200 – it’s actually on sale in Tower Records, I just can’t find it on their site), I’ve been making a wish list of records I’d love to own. In the meantime, his parents have very kindly loaned us some of theirs, and it’s a seriously amazing collection, featuring tons of Cars, Joni Mitchell, Rolling Stones, Steve Miller band and Stevie Wonder among others. 

Record collections | nathalie.ie

So far, we’ve bought records by recent faves The XX and Alt J. But I’d love to bring some old favourites back into my life. I adored my Alanis Moristte Jagged Little Pill cassette, my Lauryn Hill The Miseducation of CD, and I’d really like to have a tangible version of them to enjoy, instead of just having tracks floating in the cloud of a streaming service. I think there’s also something about listening to music on a record player that turns the listening itself into an experience, and not just something to have on in the background – you have to get up to turn it and to pick the next record, it’s very conscious and deliberate, which I’ve grown to love.

I’ll have a quick update later today on another weekend highlight, and a recipe later in the week for my new favourite breakfast.

Have a great week!

 

3 (Rental-Friendly) Interiors Trends I’m Loving Right Now

As many of you know, renting in Dublin can be tough. As editor of Image Interiors & Living, I see the most beautiful, inspiring homes in the country on a regular basis. As someone who has been renting in Dublin for almost ten years, I’ve seen the most depressing, uninspiring spaces masquerading as homes on an all-too regular basis. It’s hard to find places that are nicely furnished, or, better yet, come unfurnished and give you the freedom to do your thing. 

All too many times when renting, I’ve made do with what was there, grumbling inwardly every time I returned home to a magnolia wall, a greying china ball light fixture, or a shiny black leather armchair. But places like Justina Blakeney’s ‘jungalow‘ give me hope, and remind me that you absolutely can put your own personality on a rental space, ugly tiles be dammed. So here are three spring/summer interiors trends that I’m loving right now, and that are easy to work into a rental space. I promise this post will not contain: beautiful white-washed wooden floors (because what rental has those?), gorgeous kitchen cabinets (ditto) or things that require you to paint extensively/drill holes (though some landlords are cool with that).

5 rental friendly interiors trends to update your space for spring.

Pops of yellow. The quickest, easiest and cheeriest way to brighten up a room. Cover that pine dining table in a simple, neutral tablecloth (Meadows & Byrne do some nice ones, and the Linen Casual range from Casamance is beautiful) and add in a bright light fixture, crockery, or even the odd tea towel. The spring/summer update from Helen James at Dunnes has some nice citrus hits.
[pic spotted on Intwine ]


5 rental friendly interiors trends to update your space for spring.

Plants, plants everywhere. Botanicals are big this season, but it’s my humble opinion that they should be big every year, especially in rental spaces. Houseplants add colour, texture, and freshness, while different vessels and containers let you play with shapes to add interest to dull mantles, window ledges and coffee tables. My recently-purchased burro’s tail succulent is still the star of my mantlepiece. Dublin has really upped its house plant game of late – Appassionata on Drury St is brilliant for super low-maintenance air plants and potted flowers, while The Garden, Powerscourt and Temple Bar, always stocks a brilliant collection of succulents and cacti. Both are almost impossible to kill (that doesn’t mean I haven’t offed a few.). Ikea usually a have decent selection (dangerously easy to impulse buy on your way out), including some nice hanging plants, and I’ve picked up the odd fern or pretty potted plant in Woodies. [pic]

5 rental friendly interiors trends to update your space for spring.

Ladders + lights. Ladders have been trending for a while now, and, living in a rental, it’s easy to see why – no drilling or screws are required, they offer storage for everything from towels to magazines and kind of just look cool propped up and draped with pretty fairy lights in that weird corner you don’t know what do with it. I’ve had my eye on this cute dip-dye number from Irish company Snug for a while now. Those little cotton ball lights are super handy too; I have two sets – one, Mexican themed (natch) from Cable and Cotton, and the other a beautiful combo of white and neutral shades (a present from lovely Rincy) that I have draped around a giant branch to greet me at the front door. [pic]

 So that’s it! Are you living in a rental? If so, I’d love to hear what you’re doing to put your stamp on it.

If you’re looking for more inspiration, I’m always adding ideas and lusting after other people’s cool spaces in this Pinterest board.

Weekend round up + The Year of Magical Thinking

Weekend roundup | nathalie.ie

Hola! How was your weekend? Mine was spent doing a bit of  work (we’re in production with the May-June issue) and getting completely lost in Joan Didion’s incredible book, The Year of Magical Thinking.

A candid, unblinking yet beautiful portrait of love, loss and marriage, it was recommended to me by Jess over cocktails and tacos in Taco Taco on Friday. By  the end of Saturday night (following an amazing pan-seared soy, ginger and lime tuna steak dinner made using this recipe), I was over half way through. I can’t recommend it enough. 

Pics above:, from top left: Beautiful spring blossoms, posted as part of #AprilLove2015; Saturday night reading; that delicious tuna dish (served with a spinach and chickpea salad, guac and mango salsa); Ben challenging me to a Hearthstone match over some Korean food; my Game of Thrones piece in the current issue of Cara; beautiful light on an evening stroll. 

 Have a great week!

Spring sunsets in Dublin

Spring sunsets in Dublin | nathalie.ie

Let me keep my distance, always, from those
who think they have the answers.

Let me keep company always with those who say
“Look!” and laugh in astonishment,
and bow their heads.

From Mysteries, Yes by Mary Oliver

Recent work: Inside the Belfast studio of ceramic artist Derek Wilson

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artists Derek Wilson

As part of our Northern Ireland special in the current issue of Image Interiors & Living, I got to spend a morning shooting the studio of Belfast-based artist Derek Wilson. He creates these gorgeous, clean, contemporary ceramic pieces. “My objects, in their colour, shape and materiality, reference the ideas of restraint, containment and minimalism,” he explains on his site

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artist Derek Wilson

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artist Derek Wilson

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artist Derek Wilson

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artist Derek Wilson

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artist Derek Wilson

Inside the studio of irish ceramic artist Derek Wilson

I love that he creates both beautiful, functional ceramic pieces designed to make you treasure very ordinary, everyday rituals, as well as stunning sculptural creations that you just want to pop on a shelf and admire. It was genuinely inspiring to be in his space and see how he works, so thank you Derek for letting us take a peek! You can read a lovely interview with him in the current issue, where he talks about his early work and influences.  

Purchase some of his pieces from Maven in Belfast,  Makers & Brothers and directly from his site.

Link Love

April daffs | nathalie.ie

 Remember when I was obsessed with ballet? Yeah, this video just made it a billion times worse (or better).

Still working my way through Cup of Jo’s 20 great career tips from female entrepreneurs. Love photographer Sharon Montrose’s words of wisdom: “Most of the time, I’m improvising. I just turned 41, yet I still feel like a kid playing office half the time. I can’t speak for others, but I’m pretty sure we’re all winging it.”

Above: It wouldn’t be spring without a picture of some daffs. These lovelies were a very sweet gift from Rincy.

Some cool things happening around Dublin: image.ie running club around Grand Canal Dock (with my awesome trainer Liz) | Hidden Heroes: The Genius of Everyday Things is an exhibition from the Vitra Design Museum and showing at Dublin castle as part of ID2015 | Lily’s tamales workshop has been on my hit list for a while.

Really want this Inga Sempé for Hay pin board in my life.

Loving this spring playlist from Miss Moss, featuring Father John Misty (ex Fleet Foxes).

Some favourite (and quick) mid-week recipes we’re loving right now: Thai prawn and ginger noodles | Lilly Higgins’ five-ingredient ibimbap (minus the egg for Ben) | crunchy salsa cod (minus the cheese).

For cat lovers: A pretty great way to hide a litter box.

Very cool gift for your art-loving friend who has just had a baby.

Below: She & Him collaborated with Brian Wilson and the result is just as chill, sweet and nostalgic as you would imagine. 

Have a great (long) weekend! 

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