9.30.2014

Grilled Pork with Rosemary & Onion Compote

Something sweet and savory at the end of a long day is kind of glorious. Especially with a nice glass of wine. I absolutely love this recipe and how you only need a few ingredients to make it happen. It is nice to be able to still break out the grill before the cold comes, but this recipe is much more Fall like than its Summer counterparts. 


Grilled Pork Chops with Rosemary & Fig Compote


serves 4


3 large onions, sliced

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 cup fig preserves, like Bonne Maman (you could use orange or 

apricot as well)

2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons freshly chopped rosemary, plus some for garnish

crushed red pepper to taste

salt and pepper

4 tablespoons Dijon mustard

4 pork chops (I prefer the bone in loin chops, so much flavor)


Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the oil, once hot

add in the onions. Toss with the oil to coat and cook, stirring 

frequently, until just starting to brown, about 10 minutes. Add in 

the preserves, balsamic, rosemary, crushed red pepper, and salt and 

pepper to taste. Combine well and bring to a boil. Turn heat down 

to medium-low and cook, stirring and scraping bottom 

occasionally, until onions are very tender and caramelized, about 

30 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a grill or grill pan over high heat. Brush pork

chops with the mustard and season generously with salt and 

pepper. Grill chops on both sides until thermometer registers 150 

degrees, about 8-10 minutes per side depending on thickness of 

chops. Let meat rest for 5 minutes.

Serve each chop with a generously helping of the onion compote 

on top. Serve immediately.

Enjoy! 
xo
Erin 

9.29.2014

Sweater Dress Weather

Happy Monday loves. Monday is the worst, so I hope yours is going ok. I was doing some shopping around for a client and thought I would share the sweater dresses I found for her. Honestly, a sweater dress is the easiest things to throw on in the Fall. Add tights and boots, possibly a belt and you are so set for a day when leggings just will not do. 

1.  A classic knit dress from Asos $22
2. Not really knit, but I can vouch that I wear this dress all Fall. Asos $15
3. This is such a pretty pink and the lace underlay is very girlie. Free People $128
4. White is so classic and flattering. Free People $105
5. A cable knit that fits close to the body would be great. Nordstrom $78
6. The leather seaming on this knit dress gives is little edge, but the silhouette keeps it sweet. Nordstrom $135

Hope this makes your Monday a little better. 
xo
Erin 

9.26.2014

Sleep Pretty & Tight

I am such a huge fan of sleep. Probably too much since I am always thinking about how to get more even when I am getting a good nights worth. And though I have a couple of t-shirts of Matt's that I wear once in awhile, I mostly like to wear pretty little things when it is time to go to bed. 

I found the sweetest little store that has gorgeous sleepwear in pretty prints and soft satin with great price points. Which is hard to find for quality pieces you actually want to curl up in. 

It is called Plum Pretty Sugar, and there is a so much to love. Here are a few pieces that caught my eye, but there is much more on the site. 

Clockwise from Top Left: A satin two piece $45 / A Cami and shorts set $48 / A sweet little night gown $44 / Floral shortie set $44 / Pretty eye masks $12 / Rosey printed cami set $48

The bottom three are actually done in collaboration with BHLDN, probably one of the sweetest bridal stores ever. 

I hope you have a sweet and restful weekend. 

xo
Erin 

9.25.2014

Reading Nook for Tommy

I so wish I had a before picture of his room. Not that there was huge changes in this corner, but there certainly a big impact with just a few added pieces. Tommy has built-ins in his closet, but there is only one shelf he can reach and a toddler has a hard time picking a book based solely on the spines. I should know, since he loves playing the "let me take my sweet time picking a book so I can stay up later" game. Plus, there was always a giant pile of books next to the chair that was a complete mess. So I searched for a few solutions and came up with these photo ledges from Ikea. 


They come in white and black and are super easy to install. We hung them low for little people and now he has his own "library" we can switch books in and out of easily. 




Tommy also needed a new lamp since his last one broke. There is no overhead lighting in his room currently, so it needs something that will illuminate most of the room (there is a table lamp in the opposite corner). So when I came across this industrial style floor lamp when I went to get the photo ledges, I was psyched. 




This is the bronze color, but it also comes in a very dark gray. Now he has an even better place for night time stories with us and he loves that the lamp has a floor button to turn it on and off. It is basically a club in there during the day. 

He is still in a crib, but when it is time to move to the big bed, I cannot wait to paint and get some more toys/organization in his room. Then he should be good for many years to come. 

xo
Erin 

PS: The rug is from Dwell Studio (discontinued), Ottoman from Burke Decor, Chair from Ikea

9.24.2014

Back to the Future

I know I am not the only one with a high school reunion this month and it is kind of fun. Not the part that it has been fifteen (15!) years since I graduated from the Home of the Broncos, but the part about how people you once spent four years of your life with still want to get together after all these years. My father still gets together with his grammar school buddies and he is in his seventies. Bonds like that make me so happy and I can only hope that mine will be just as strong. 

There are plenty of things that I miss from high school. Hanging out at our lockers, after school drives through the Hills, Friday night football games (and the parties following), dance class with all my favorites, and eighth hour open. The fashion though, not so much. 

The funny thing is though that a lot of my favorite Fall pieces are straight out of the nineties. A more refined and chic version thank goodness, but certainly a nod to the glory days. 

Clueless has to be on my top ten favorite movies. Cher was so cool. When you look at her outfits now, they had this whole school girl vibe, albeit one straight from Contempo Casuals. 


I wish I could still pull off knee socks, but instead here are some ways to channel Cher this season. 

1. The Olson twins must be Clueless fans too. This screams Cher. Elizabeth & James $325
2. These Mary Janes are way better than Cher's and would last forever. Manolo Blahnik $745
3. Trade Cher's beret for a slouchy beanie. Plush $48
4. Buffalo check was huge on the Fall runways. I am obsessed with the cut of this jacket too. BB Dakota $105
5. A tweed mini with black tights is pretty timeless. Topshop $68

Beyonce really used to show some swagger in her Hilfiger wear. It is a far cry from her current couture closet, but it is so great to remember where it all began. Tommy Hilfiger was the label in the nineties. Everyone wanted that little red white and blue flag on their shirt. Or jeans, Or jacket. 


Red, white, and blue is not just for July and there are some great ways to pull it off for day or night. 

For Night: 
1. How pretty is this pleated midi skirt in cobalt? Asos $66
2. What could be more nineties than a bodysuit? and I kind of want one for outfits just like this. Indah $52
3. Red is such a statement in a shoe and I worship the shape of these Joie booties. $315
For Day: 
4. This crisp white duffel coat is gorgeous. Asos $114
5. Love a good gingham. Wear this over legging or skinnies, the length is perfect. Madewell $74
6. A classic sneak in red is fun. Superga $65

This throwback made me laugh so hard. Do you remember how everyone was either wearing a North Face tee shirt or one of these Banana ones? Why or why? 


There are some cuter animal options these days...

1. This Wildfox sweater shirt is insanely soft. The writing says "I want one." lol $108
2. You do some good with this elephant tee from J. Crew. Proceeds go to a Wildlife Trust. $47
3. This deer jumper is adorable. French Connection $150

I watch Empire Records every freaking time it is on. Cannot resist it and the fashion is amazing. It was a mix of that grunge and school girl thing that we all copied so much.  


While grunge/school girl is far from my comfort zone now, mixing in some updated, more refined pieces is perfect. 

1. Throw a belt over this shirt dress and you have the perfect update on the grunge fanned trend. Madewell $74
2. A much classier version of the pleated mini.  Parker $209
3. Polished, but with a edge. These skinnies are so great and flattering. Madewell $128
4. Cropped sweaters that come with a sweater underneath is perfect for over thirty year olds. Or really anyone. Elizabeth & James $365

Hope you liked that trip down memory lane. What trend are you going to try and sport? 

xo
Erin 


9.23.2014

Easy Savory Tarts

This is a great quick app that you can put together easily with just a few ingredients. Plus, you can switch it up to flavors that you enjoy. Any cheese and topping would be delicious and I often just keep the dough in the freezer and bake this up with what I have on hand. I made this for a shower last weekend (excuse the awful iPhone pictures) and it was a huge hit. It works well for parties as it is good warm or at room temperature. Puff pastry dough can be found in the dessert sec ion of the frozen foods aisle at the market. It is an incredibly diverse ingredient, so keep one in your freezer for apps like this and quick desserts.


Mozzarella & Sun Dried Tomato Tart
Imperfect Polish 2014
serves 6-8

1 sleeve of one package of thawed frozen puff pastry dough 
8 oz package of fresh mozzarella, sliced thin
1 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes (if you use the marinated ones, drain and towel off excess oil)
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

Unwrap the pastry dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roll out the dough a bit to thin it out with a rolling pin. About 10 x 13.  Pierce the dough all over with a fork, covering with lots of holes. Bake for 20 minutes

Let the dough cool a bit and if it puffed up (it is ok if it does), gently push it down. Line the tart with the cheese, leaving a 1/2 inch border. Sprinkle with the sun dried tomatoes. 

Bake an additional 20 minutes, until cheese it melted and dough is golden brown. Sprinkle with the basil and cut into squares. 

Serve warm or at room temperature. 



Herbed Cheese, Artichoke, & Prosciutto Tart 
Imperfect Polish 2014
serves 6-8

1 sleeve of one package of thawed frozen puff pastry dough 
1/4 cup of soft herbed cheese, like Borsin
1 cup chopped artichokes (if you use the marinated ones, drain and towel off excess oil)
1/4 cup thinly sliced onion 
1/4 cup prosciutto sliced into ribbons

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

Unwrap the pastry dough onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Roll out the dough a bit to thin it out with a rolling pin. About 10 x 13.  Pierce the dough all over with a fork, covering with lots of holes. Bake for 20 minutes

Let the dough cool a bit and if it puffed up (it is ok if it does), gently push it down. Spread the tart with the cheese, leaving a 1/2 inch border. Sprinkle with the artichokes, then the onion and prosciutto. 

Bake an additional 20 minutes, until cheese it melted and dough is golden brown. Sprinkle with the basil and cut into squares. 

Serve warm or at room temperature. 

Enjoy! 
xo
Erin 

9.22.2014

Secret Lives of Moms: What You Miss


I am glad that you all are loving this new series. It is so fun to collect the answers and see what everyone has to say. 

This week I asked, 

Besides sleep, what do you miss most about life before kids? 

Here is what some Moms had to say…

"Going to movies, reading the paper on weekend mornings, and not having to share my plate of food...no matter what is on her plate, she always wants mine."


"I miss completing a task the same day I start one. Before kids, I knew myself to be extremely task oriented. I'd work on something all day and all night if I had to in order to get it done right away. Now I feel like I have a hundred projects around my house/life incomplete and it drives me nuts! I also miss my communicative freedom. I don't know what it is but having to spell out the f word when it is the expletive most necessary just doesn't have the same impact point-wise. And having to tip toe around a story and use fake names and codes for certain people and behaviors so that two certain somebodies won't repeat the story at an inopportune time just takes the wind out of my storytelling sails… "

"Evening walks with my husband,  going a full day without having to check on anyone, and I miss the days when I didn't have to plan what I was going to do the next day."

"Sleeping in.  My son doesn't care if it's a Monday or a Saturday we are up at 6:30am. Also coming and going freely.  Even now when I have a sitter for a few hours or get to go away for the weekend there's a ton of prep that goes into it- prepping meals, writing out a schedule, making sure the sitter knows the house alarm code or remembers to turn on my son's sound machine during nap time so he gets a good nap.  Tons of little things to remember."

"I miss going to the store without a dependent entourage. Without a diaper bag, without thinking of who I'll pull out of the car first based on who's more liable to run while I'm busy pulling out the other kid, without the inevitable battle that comes with clicking independent little ones into their car seats. I miss just getting up and going!"

"Not having to pay a babysitter when I want to go out on a date."

"I miss the relaxing evenings, making dinner at a slow pace with no specific dietary requests or specific time to eat by. Making dinner together listening to music. Ah the good old days... Now it's more like me sweating in the kitchen and yelling at everyone to come sit when it's ready usually with wine in hand to make it through without crying."

"I miss being able to leave the house without packing...snacks, drinks, diapers, extra clothes, wipes, toys, band aids and on and on."

"​POWER LUNCHES…I took them for granted.  Now that we have a wee one, I can't remember the last time I had an hour for lunch to myself!​"  

"Being able to sleep in! Even when my hubby offers to get up .... I still wake up! It is so frustrating. And Friday happy hours that last till midnight."

"I miss having absolutely nothing to do on the weekends. Would love to enjoy a cup of coffee and read magazines on a Saturday morning, go shopping with no distractions, or spend a Sunday afternoon watching lifetime movies on the couch."

"Spontaneity. Being able to do anything (travel, workout, date night) without having to pump, plan around naps and bedtime, or persuading my parents to babysit. Also, the ability to start and finish a project without any interruptions.  And mostly, my mind."

"Running mindless, unnecessary "errands" - like going to Anthropologie 3 times in one week. I also miss binge watching a TV show for an entire day. And having no plans on a Saturday, which turns into a neighborhood bar crawl. Just because."

I could not agree more about all of these answers. Clearly, everyone really misses their freedom and ability to live their life on their own terms. We gave that up in the delivery room, ladies. But it was nice while it lasted. 

What about you? What do you miss most?

See the first post on nap time if you missed it. 

xo
Erin 

9.19.2014

Current Favorites

This week was busy, but it wasn't. Do you know what I mean? Not a lot of things on the calendar, but the days were filled with to do lists, errands, cleaning up after the kids, and after bedtime chores. And because my mind is on lame things like how to get rid of the fruit flies in my house, my creativity for writing was shot. But I at least wanted to leave you with some things that are making me happy. 

1. I have been craving this sausage and kale soup so much. Cannot wait to make a big pot of it this weekend. 
2. My mother in law dropped off some of this wine, Imprimata, for us and it is AMAZING. If you see it or looking to order some red, it is delicious. 
 3. So loving my new Splendid jumpsuit. Think I might sport it to my high school reunion next weekend (15 years ack!). But I love that I can also wear it with flats to run errands and feel chic. 
4. Our current Netflix binge watching obsession is Damages. Have you watched it? If you like Scandal or Law & Order, it is kind of a mix of the two of them. And the clothes are impeccable. 
5. If you need a laugh this weekend, start following The Fat Jewish on Instagram. So so inappropriate, but so hilarious. Here is a recent NYT story on him. 
6. Fashion week(s) are ending soon and I usually just watch snippets on Instagram (follow Miraduma, anna_dello_russo, and ninagarcia) to see the shows. I thought Fendi was so lovely. Especially this leather pleated dress.  
7. I literally have like ten of these Clinque Chubby Sticks in my bag and I love them. Part balm, part lip color, and so easy to put on. 
8. Got to break out my favorite loafers this week. These Minnetonkas are basically like wearing slippers in public. 

I hope you have the best weekend and get to enjoy all your favorites too. 
xo
Erin 



9.16.2014

Moto Boots


There were four requests last week for moto boot options. So clearly you ladies are into them. I love mine so much and they really stand the test of time. Because of the easy on/easy off and comfort, they make a great alternative to those furry Uggs you cannot let go of (guilty!). 

They can be an investment piece, which can be hard to pull the trigger on. Below are some designer options that have higher price tags and some much more budget friendly ones. Either way, there is the perfect pair for you.  

1. This pair by Chloe are elegant and edgy. Hard to find. $1175
2. These Fendi  have a chunky base for the snow $990
3. A refined version with great studs Tod's $995 
4. Jimmy Choo Own them, love them $995

And some much more down to earth pairs...

1. Love the worn in look of these Frye $298
2. These H by Hudson would be great in the snow $275
3. Still pricey, but these Rag & Bone are so cool $698
4. Love this pair by Topshop $125
5. These Kate Spade even have a charming bow on the back $398
6. This Steve Madden pair is very similar to the Choos above. Great shape $169

xo
Erin 


9.15.2014

Gilted

How was your weekend? Our child-less one was unreal. So relaxed and fun, but it was great to see the kids last night. 

The temperatures are definitely on the way down and cozying up to the fireplace sounds so perfect. And though the actual fire is usually the star of the show, what is on top of it needs to make a statement too. My Pinterest has been filled with ornate and gilded mirrors on top of mantels and my gut says it is time for one at our house. 

Gold mirrors on mantels feels so Parisian to me. And while you usually think go ornate mirrors going in ornate rooms, the juxtaposition of a gold mirror in a more modern or traditional room can be awesome. Plus, there are options that are not so ornate, just gold and lovely. 

Love the height of this mirror and how it reflects the light fixture. 


 Blue grass cloth and gold is such a gorgeous statement


Eclectic yet modern 


Love the scale of this skinnier mirror in relation to the narrow fireplace. 


Plain and round is an easy option that would work in any room. 


And then there is what my apartment in Paris would look like. Swoon. 


These types of mirror are an investment, but could always be moved to another room or given new life in a hallway. But really, a gold statement piece over the mantel is so chic. Here are some options. 


1. I can't even handle this mirror, so in love with it. Chairish $455
2. A pretty scrolling shape by Uttermost Co. $199
3. Straight out of Paris apartment. Chairish $950
4. Love the lattice pattern of this Surya $459
5. This Uttermost Co. mirror has great line and great adornment on top. $509
6. A thick banded gilt mirror is so classic. Uttermost Co. $309
7. This is a gorgeous mirror by Howard Elliot, great for lower ceilings $545 
8. This bamboo mirror is such a gem and so fun. Zinc Door $530
9. The pretty line of this mirror gives it an ethnic feel, but simply Uttermost Co. $309

xo
Erin 

9.12.2014

Home Alone

(Me, this weekend. Minus the limo add an uber)

Matt and I are celebrating our sixth wedding anniversary this weekend. Kind of surreal. 

My parents just left after a long visit and even just a couple days from their departure, I am mourning the company and the round the clock assistance with the kids. They truly are present when they are here and the kids had a ball with them. 

And to prove that my kids have the best grandparents ever, my mother in law is taking care of the kids this weekend at her place. Which means we have an empty house for 48 hours. 

We have never been home for an extended time without both kids under our own roof. It is going to be glorious. No schedule, no wake up call, no nap time to work around, or nannies to hire. Just whatever we want to do and I do not have to vacate the house. 

To say I am psyched is an understatement. 

Hope you get some glory out of your weekend too. 
xo
Erin 

9.11.2014

Tomato Basil Soup

It is actually cold today. Not super cold, but just enough to put a 

sweater on. I love it. Although I will mourn the summer days 

(which might not actually be over), I look forward to cozy days

 inside and football season. I make this tomato soup all the time

 when it gets cooler. It is quick, requires few ingredients, and is the

 ultimate comfort food paired with a grilled cheese. I stick it in a

 sippy cup for the kids for easy eating and less mess. 



Tomato Basil Soup

Forks & Amusement 2011

serves 6-8


3 tablespoons olive oil


1 onion, chopped


3 carrots, chopped


salt and pepper


3 cloves of garlic, chopped


crushed red pepper to taste (optional if you like a bit of heat)


2-48oz cans diced tomatoes


2 1/2 cups chicken stock


1/2 cup half and half


5 large basil leaves, chopped




Place a large pot on the stove over medium heat. Add the oil and


once hot add the onion and carrot. Sprinkle with salt and pepper

 and sweat until onions are translucent and carrots soften, about 10

 minutes. Add the garlic and crushed red pepper, stir and cook for

 1 minute. Add in the tomatoes with their juices and the chicken 

stock. Season with salt and pepper generously and bring to a boil.

 Turn down heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and 

allow to cool slightly.

If you have an emersion blender, blend soup in the pot. If not,


 place small amounts of the soup in a blender and puree to desired 

consistency (I like a little chunky, but go as smooth as you like it).

 **Be careful not to overfill blender and to let the soup cool a bit. 

Otherwise you will have tomato soup all over your kitchen, trust 

me I did it** Return soup back to pot once it has all been pureed.



Warm soup up if needed, add in the half and half and 3/4 of the 


basil. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve warm with a bit more basil

 sprinkled on top.


Enjoy!


xo


Erin

9.10.2014

The Secret Lives of Moms: Nap Time


Today I am kicking off a new series that highlights the Secret Lives of Moms. We all share a lot of information with our Mom friends, but there are some things we never talk about. I have asked some other Moms to help me out and will highlight one question a couple times a month. This is just a fun way to see what is on other Moms minds or what they are doing when they are home with the kids. 

This week I asked what everyone did at nap time. Nap time is sacred at our house. The day I lose it, I might cry. No, I will cry. Until then, this is how I and some other Moms use nap time and the results are amazing similar…

9.09.2014

Fall Essentials

Thank you so much to everyone for all the positive response to the new Styling Services. Helping all of you be happy shoppers and gorgeously dressed gives me more satisfaction than you know. Keep the emails coming (erin@imperfectpolish.com)! 

As I start to assess my own closet for the coming season, it is nice to see my old fav orites hanging in there ready to be worn. In Fall and Winter I tend to wear a bit of uniform, switched up by a few trendier pieces of the moment. Here is what I gravitate towards Fall after Fall. 

1. A long plaid shirt that can be worn tucked into super flared jeans or as a tunic over skinny jeans is such a mainstay for me. Madewell $74
2. Moto boots are an investment piece, but mine have lasted for three years and I still wear them every other day once the weather gets cool. Jimmy Choo $1150
3. A Burberry trench is such an investment piece that you can feel confident will last season after season. This is on sale $798
4. I have this Asos sweater dress in a few colors and will be ordering more this year. At $24 (on sale) you cannot go wrong. 
5. I raved about these leggings last year and they still are the best I have found. Spanx $68
6. Lightweight sweaters that can be layered over tees, under blazers, and are soft enough for snuggling on the couch with the kids from J. Crew. Other colors available. $79
7. I buy these J. Crew vintage cotton tees in bulk. They come in so many colors and are on sale right now. $24
8. Minnetonka moccasins feel like slippers and go with everything. $42
9. This is the updated version of the Alexander Wang crossbody bag I bought a few years ago. Fall always makes me go a little edgier. $795

What you your Fall essentials? 
xo
Erin 

9.08.2014

Exciting News

Over the years of writing this blog different opportunities have come up that I have been so fortunate to be a part. From hosting parties, to writing for other publications, to helping readers with anything they need fashion and home wise. All of this is because of the support I have from all of you, and for that I am so so grateful. 

I have been getting more and more requests to help with individual fashion needs and decided to add styling consultation to my online presence. The best part is all it takes is an email to me with a few details and you will have your own personal stylist (me!) to put together whatever you need. 

              

If you ever need help for a particular event, a trip, or maybe a certain area of your wardrobe (i.e: casual clothes for Fall, breezy summer dresses, pieces to spice up your work looks) simply contact me at 


Include in the email what your needs are, your size, your time frame, and your budget. Try to give me a bit of an idea of what your personal style is like and what you are most comfortable in. 

I will then send you back your own personal style board with options for what you are looking for and links to the items to purchase online. 

The best part is that there is no additional cost for my help. I am compensated through the retailers (much like a consultant in the store), so you have your personal shopper in me. Great, right? 

              

I truly love helping all of you and and so excited to hear form you when you need help. I have added a page to the header at the top of the homepage with all of this information, so you can access anytime. 


 None of this is ever possible without you and I hope you ask for help when you need it! Also your referrals are everything to me, so spreading the word is much appreciated. 

Here's to happier closets. 
xoxo
Erin 


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