Outfit: Lots of Dots

lots-of-dots-feature

Lots of Dots Outfit via @poorandpretty

I have long been a fan of polka dots, but I think this outfit really captures my polka fever. We’ve also been a little bit polka dot crazy at work, but I can’t tell you why just yet; it’s a secret! ;)

Timex Weekender Slip Thru multicolored white watch via @poorandpretty

Speaking of work, I think my multicolored Timex Weekender SLip-Thru with a white strap goes pretty well with this outfit, yeah? Especially when I throw on my Yellow-So-Cute Coat from ModCloth. They don’t have it for sale anymore, but here’s a similar peacoat that’s a bit more suited to the season.

yellow bow belt via @poorandpretty

How perfect is this yellow bow belt? Hand’s down my favorite belt.

paparazzi photo via @poorandpretty

Oh and here’s me walking away from the super nice yellow car in our parking lot (no idea what kind), Dave chasing me with his iPhone and pretending to be the paparazzi. (We have fun!)

Lots of Dots Outfit closeup via @poorandpretty

Outfit details: Polka Dot CardiganForever 21, $23 (similar). Yellow bow belt: Forever 21, $5 (similar, similar). Vintage Purple Pencil Skirt: Maison St. Germain, $20 (similar). Watch: Timex Weekender Slip-Thru, courtesy of Timex.  Polka dot tights: H&M, 2 for $10 (similar). Flats: Rampage, Peonies Couture, $15.

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Recipe: Scandinavian Bulla Bread

Bulla Bread feature

Scandinavian Bulla Bread Recipe via @poorandpretty

A few weeks ago, my Dad mentioned these slightly sweet rolls his paternal grandmother used to bake when he was younger. “Bulla bread!” He said. He had never mentioned them before, but I’m always up for a baking challenge! His 50th birthday party this past Sunday was the perfect time to try my hand at them.

Bulla Bread 2 via @poorandpretty

Bulla’s origins look to be Finnish, but are made across Scandinavia. My great-grandmother was Swedish and Danish so this recipe was most likely engrained in her brain. (Kind of like Red Velvet cupcakes are for me). Take a dinner roll, add sugar and cardamom and that’s basically it. You can add raisins or cinnamon too, but having never made them before, I went for a basic recipe. I loved making them for my Dad, and watching he and his siblings reminisce while eating them. They made yummy breakfast treats the next day too!

Bulla Bread — makes 32 rolls. Recipe adapted from Snovej.

  • 2 cups + 2 tbs milk
  • 2 packages of dry yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar + 1 tsp, divided
  • 2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 5½ – 6 cups flour
  • 14 tbs (1 ¾ sticks) butter, room temperature or melted

1. Microwave the milk for about a minute and pour it into a big bowl. Dissolve the yeast in it, then stir in one egg and 1 cup sugar, and the salt and cardamom. Mix well.

2. Add flour 1 cup at a time, mixing thoroughly between each addition. After 4 cups, mix in the butter, then more flour until you have a nice dough that no longer sticks to your fingers. (This was about 5½ cups for me).

bulla bread dough pre-risen via @poorandpretty

3. When you’re satisfied with the consistency of your dough, cover it with a towel and let it rise in a warm place.

bulla bread dough risen via @poorandpretty

4. After 1-2 hours, it should have doubled in size. If not, let it rise for longer.

bulla bread dough kneaded via @poorandpretty

5. When it’s risen, pour the dough onto a floured surface and knead it, adding more flour if necessary.

bulla bread dough via @poorandpretty

6. Divide the dough into four equal-sized balls.

bulla bread dough roll via @poorandpretty

7. Roll each ball into a log about 8″-10″ long.

bulla bread dough cut via @poorandpretty

8. Slice each long into 8 equal pieces. I slice it in half first, then quarters, then eighths.

bulla bread ready to bake via @poorandpretty

9. Lay out your sliced dough on a cookie sheet covered with parchment paper. Let rise for another 30 minutes or so.

baked bulla bread via @poorandpretty

10. Make an egg wash with your other egg and 1 tbs of sugar, and lightly baste your dough, then cook at 450º for 8-10 minutes.

Bulla Bread top via @poorandpretty

11. Sprinkle with sugar and enjoy!

For more ways to make Bullas, check out this recipe from Snovej.

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Cozy Fall Favorites

cozy fall faves via @poorandpretty

Happy Fall! The weather has been getting a bit chillier up here in the northeast. I’m breaking out my scarves, sweaters, and chai tea for the season.

1. On The Plus Side Cardigan via ModCloth. How cozy does this cardi look? I need it!

2. Eden Scarf via FashionABLE. I love FashionABLE’s scarves and their mission to create sustainable businesses in Africa. For that, this fall accessory is a win-win.

3. Skinny Skinny Jeans via Madewell. I just bought a pair of these from Uptown Consignment — brand new! — for $18. They are the most comfortable jeans I have ever owned. They will be well worn this season.

4. Madden Girl Elsiee boots via Zappos. I love cognac-colored boots. If I didn’t just buy a pair earlier this year, these would be all mine.

5. Chai Tea via Simpson & Vail. As soon as it starts falling below 60 degrees in the morning, I make my own chai tea lattes before work with Simpson & Vale’s chai tea mix, soy milk, and a little bit of agave nectar. (I’ve also made an iced version.)

6. Super Chunky Merino Wool Blanket via Colorways Gallery on Etsy. I just want to burrito-wrap myself in this blanket and never come out.

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100% Pure Review + Mascara Giveaway!

100 Percent Pure natural cosmetics via @poorandpretty

I’m always on the lookout for natural cosmetics so when I stumbled across 100% Pure, I knew I had to give them a try. Unlike many “green-washing” companies out there, 100% Pure really means it when they say their products are entirely natural. They contain absolutely no synthetic chemicals, chemical preservatives, artificial colors or fragrances, harsh detergents, or other toxins. Nor do they test on animals or use any animal by-products, so they’re vegan as well. Their makeup is colored with fruit and vegetable pigments in lieu of minerals or synthetic dyes. Pretty awesome.

100 Percent Pure mascara giveaway via @poorandpretty

So let me introduce you to a few of my favorite 100% Pure products, then you can enter to win their black mascara!

100 Percent Pure scrub + mask via @poorandpretty

We’ll start with their Brightening Scrub + Mask. You know I’m a big fan of making my own facial scrubs and masks, but it’s good to have one on hand for those lazy days, or for traveling. 100% Pure’s Brightening Scrub + Mask is full of antioxidants and vitamins like pomegranate seed oil, strawberry, pineapple, papaya, and cranberry extracts, pink grapefruit essential oil… the list goes on and on. It gently exfoliates with tiny jojoba beads (those little colorful wax spheres I used to put on my cupcake soaps as sprinkles). It leaves my skin feeling refreshed, exfoliated, and moisturized.

100 Percent Pure primer + moisturizer via @poorandpretty

After I wash my face and dab on my homemade astringent, I follow up with 100% Pure’s Jasmine Green Tea Moisturizer. It absorbs quickly so I sometimes feel like I need to use a little more than is probably necessary, but I like that it doesn’t leave my skin oily. If I plan to wear anything more than tinted moisturizer, I’ll also dab on a tiny bit of their Luminous Primer. I don’t have much experience with primers, but this one seems to work pretty well. I’ll probably start wearing it more often because I really love how the light-reflective pigments in it give my skin a healthy glow.

100 Percent Pure foundation + tinted moisturizer via @poorandpretty

My first 100% Pure purchase was their sheer Fruit Pigmented Water Foundation in White Peach. While I love both their water foundation and tinted moisturizer, I wish they offered trial samples to help find the right color. It’s so hard buying foundation from the Internet unless you already know your shade. The foundation and tinted moisturizers are so smooth and hydrating, but the White Peach color is just a tad too orange for me. They do have a 30 day return policy though, so I’m sure if you run into the same issue, they’ll swap out the product for you. I think White Peach would look fine on me if I had a bit of a tan, but it’s definitely not my Fall/Winter color!

100 Percent Pure eyeliner + luminescent powder via @poorandpretty

At first, I thought the Luminescent Powder was just a fancy kind of blush, but it actually gives very sheer color and a whole lot of, well, luminescence! It really brightens up your skin, so I use it in conjunction with blush. The Creamy Long Last Eyeliner is true to its name and really does last all day! It’s normally such a pain to put on eyeliner — especially if you’re like me and don’t have a steady hand — so I appreciate the ease of putting this on.

100 Percent Pure lip stain and creme comparison via @poorandpretty

You might remember 100% Pure’s Lip Creme Stick and Lip & Cheek Stain from my roundup of natural lip sticks, balms, and glosses last month. I have the Lip Creme Stick in Perfect Naked Pink, which — also true to its name — gives my lips just a little color. The Lip Stain gives me much more color and I only have to use a tiny bit. It really does stain your lips, so it lasts throughout the day. It doesn’t have any shine to it, so I add my Coco Balm on top for a glossy finish. The above image gives you an idea of how my lips look when using my Coco Balm (top), the lip stain (left), and the creme stick (right).

makeup for Jordan's wedding

I used almost exclusively 100% Pure products at Jordan’s wedding, and it turned out beautiful and lasted all day, even in the sticky heat and rain.

100 Percent Pure mascara giveaway via @poorandpretty

Wanna win 100% Pure’s Mascara in Black Tea? Just leave a comment below about your favorite place to go for makeup inspiration or tell me some other natural cosmetics you love. The contest will be open until Friday, September 26th, and I will announce the winner on Monday. Open to US residents only. Good luck! This contest is now closed. Congrats to Joy-Marie!

Full disclosure: I was given 100% Pure products for this review, however, all opinions expressed are my own. Read my full affiliate disclosure here.

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DIY Homemade No-Cook Play Dough

DIY Play Dough feature

DIY Play Dough via @poorandpretty

Apparently, today is National Play-Doh Day. Really, who makes up these holidays? Oh, right, companies do – so they can squeeze more money out of us jamokes! Not this year, my fellow frugalistas! I’m going to teach you how to make your very own play dough.

DIY Play Dough trio via @poorandpretty

I haven’t made this since I was in elementary school. I have fond memories of mixing this up in the kitchen with my Nana, and playing with food coloring to make different shades. Even though she told me not to eat it, I would always sample a little bit. It was disgusting. Please don’t eat it. It’s not at all like licking the brownie batter bowl.

DIY Play Dough ingredients via @poorandpretty

This is a very simple recipe that requires no cooking, so you can easily make it with kiddos!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup flour
  • ½ cup water
  • less than ½ cup salt (⅓ cup is too little. I use a ½ cup measuring cup and don’t fill it all the way)
  • food coloring

DIY Play Dough kneaded via @poorandpretty

1. Mix the flour and salt together, then add the water and blend until you reach a doughy consistency. If it’s too sticky, add more flour. Too crumbly? Add more water.

DIY Play Dough rolled via @poorandpretty

2. Split the dough into three equal-sized balls and decide which colors you’d like each to be.

DIY Play Dough food coloring via @poorandpretty

3. Add food coloring to your first dough ball and knead, knead, knead.

DIY Play Dough lime green via @poorandpretty

4. Keep kneading! Getting the color to blend in well is the hardest part. When you’re happy with your color, wash your hands to remove the food coloring, and repeat step 3 for your other two dough balls.

DIY Play Dough marble blue via @poorandpretty

I made lime green, pink, and this cool marble-blue color. I could have kept kneading it, but I really like the marbled look!

DIY Play Dough in storage via @poorandpretty

That’s really it! You can fancy it up with a little veggie oil to make it a bit more glossy and moist. Or try it with Jell-O to make it scented (there’s a good recipe for that here). Store them in airtight containers and they’ll keep for a few days, possibly even weeks. As a kid, mine never lasted more than a day because I would build something with it and leave it out to dry. :)

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