Great food fails to exclude an awesome look

#travel Interior of the Pump House restaurant a historic place in Fairbanks, Alaska
Chef Louis Martinez, associate professor of Culinary Arts with students explaining the purple potato ice cream dessert they had prepared for the festival

Potato Festival – a Fairbanks affair

An unique Fairbanks formal event I am looking forward to each year is the Annual Potato Festival. Festival Fairbanks hosts this seven course dinner with wine service. The Midnight Sun Chef’s Association prepares this potato dinner that features local potatoes in every of its seven courses. The Pump House, a local historic must-see place, restaurant with saloon provides a great Alaska ambiente, perfect for a potato dinner. The potatoes are donated by the local growers who also attend the dinner in addition to the paying guests.

#travel Fairbanksan chefs posing at the Pump House
Group photo of the chefs

It’s not all about eating potatoes

Yes, I love eating potatoes and hence grow various Alaska types of potatoes in our  yard. But for me it is not all about munching on my favorite starch. It’s more about fashion and style. The Potato Festival is one of the few opportunities for Fairbanks women to dress up as the dress code is Fairbanks Formal. So to speak, it is also a fashion event. The restaurant and walk to the cocktail bar in the Senator Saloon is runway. There is also live music, a silent auction, and door prizes. This fundraiser’s proceeds benefit the programs of Festival Fairbanks. One of their programs is the beautification of Fairbanks’ downtown.

#travel musisc at the Pump House restaurant a histroric place in Fairbanks, Alaska
Musicians and the cocktail wine table with waitress

The seven course dinner

Potato crepes with creamy potato slaw pulled pork
Potato leek pear soup garnished with crisp bacon
Beet root potato salad served in butter leaf
Seared halibut, roasted fingerling potato, pea shoot cucumber spaghetti, wasabi dressing
Grapefruit and mint sorbet with grapefruit confit
Sous-vide lamb served with butterball chipotle potato
Purple potato ice cream

Here are photos of some of the courses. Even tough I love purple potatoes – I use them for our traditional Christmas Eve potato salad dinner with Wieners – I never had thought one could make ice cream from them.😉

#food great dinning setting with potato decoration Stylish table setting with red potato and German butterling potato
#food potato root salad on butter lettuce leaves Potato root salad on butter lettuce leaves
#food halibut plate with potato cabbage salad Halibut with cabbage potato salad and pulled pork pocket
#food purple potato ice cream with cookies Purple potato ice cream with round coconut cookie and oblong butter vanilla cookie

The Fairbanks Formal outfits

Continue reading “Great food fails to exclude an awesome look”

You want Nick’s great tips to improve a great look

Introduction of Nick Verreos’ book A Passion for Fashion

Fans of Project Runway know Nick Verreos. He was one of the contestants in the second run of this reality TV show. He is also an instructor for fashion sketching at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM). He recently wrote a book with David Paul entitled A Passion for Fashion – Achieving your Fashion Dreams One Thread at a Time to help (young) fashion interested people to prepare for admission into fashion school.

For this audience, the book will be an excellent reality check, whether or not fashion is a career path that is right for them. Reading his book may save them many dollars in student loans as the book will help them to avoid studying something of which they had a wrong perception. A fashion career is not always red carpet, glam and jet set, and a pathway for becoming famous (and rich). Any career in fashion is about hard work with long work hours, ambition, willingness to life-long learning, and being a multi-talent in all branches of fashion industry from designing sketching, sewing, over marketing and running a business, just to mention a few essential aspects for survival, i.e. making a living.

Nick discusses various fashion career paths and provides excellent career advice. A must-read for anyone dreaming and/or about or tempted by a fashion career.

Review of Nick’s book

In his book, Nick Verreos teaches making fashion sketches, inspiration boards, preparing application material, among other things. Like many great modern educators, he uses his own experience and mistakes to teach how things have to be done right. He provides step-by-step explanations with reasons why to do it this way. He promotes activity-based learning using how-to tips. These tips help (potential) fashion students to prepare themselves for admission and success in fashion school by applying and practicing needed skills.

Nick Verreos also points out how mistakes look like, which helps the students to identify that they are doing something wrong, and to improve fast.

Being an educator myself, I like that he also documents how his own skills have developed and improved over time. Doing so encourages students that continuous practice is a pre-requisite to success and everybody can achieve their goals when they commit to work on what it takes to achieve them. It also well illustrates that even when you are already good at something that there is always room for improvement and learning. Nobody is born as a know-it-all, and talent is never enough, nor sufficient.

Why every fashionista or stylish woman should read his book to improve her own style

His examples of mistakes are of great value for every fashionista and stylish woman even when they do not want to attend fashion school. The examples namely show how ill fitting clothes look like. Thus, when you learn how a good sketch of a jacket collar for instance has to look, you can use this knowledge when you shop for a new jacket. When your collar hits the right proportions on your body you will get the fit right, and you will automatically look awesome in that said jacket.

Other great fashion subjects covered by “A Passion for Fashion”

As pointed out above, Nick covers also how to make an inspiration board. When you are in search for your own signature style, an inspiration board is a great starting point to learn who you are, and what is so you.

Among other, he teaches on the power and pitfalls of the press, and the importance of knowing the business hierarchy and the job related skills, and necessity to have great mentors and to invest in networking. These ponits are of value in any job field and business, and hence read-worthy.

Price-to-performance ratio

Of course, whether a book is worth its price always depends on what the reader does with the material covered by the book. I think it has extreme value beyond its original intend. The reader can use the correct sketches and his tips as cheat sheets to look for the right fit when shopping. His discussion of the characteristics and behavior of various fabrics help to make educated decisions when shopping for your closet to achieve the effect you want (e.g. hiding bumps and lumps, highlighting the waist, etc.). For my own money, I definitively would buy the book.

A Passion for Fashion was published by Post Hill Press. It is available as hard copy and e-book. Read it!❤  You can connect with Nick Verreos on his website, YouTubeInstagram, Pinterest, Facebook, and/or Twitter accounts if you like.

Do you read fashion books or look up tips in them? Do you browse thru books where you do not belong to the audience that is mentioned in the “about” section? What was the last fashion and style related book you bought? Let me know, I am curious.

Now let’s party. Readers, do you know that you can link up your Instagram outfit posts at the party?

Top of the World Style linkup-party

Continue reading “You want Nick’s great tips to improve a great look”