Creative Spaces : Toino Abel

Creative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Creative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda VuckovicCreative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Creative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Creative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Creative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Creative Spaces : Toino Abel | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic

Last week I traveled to a small village of Castanheira to learn more about production and people behind Toino Abel. I visited weavers, husband and wife, and was privileged to see them working. Process is slow, handmade, with attention to every single detail.

“…Every step of the process is done by hand: The women cut the reed sticks into bunches of equal size, clean and dry them and clear their colour in a process of burning sulphur. Afterwards they colour the remaining darker pieces with colour pigments and weave them on a hand loom in a variety of patterns. The finished parts are being stitched together in the form of a bag. The handles of the baskets are made of willow branches that are bound and fastened onto the baskets…”

It was a morning well spent with Nuno , whose great grandfather started a production of reed baskets which he delivering all over Portugal with a cow and cart. Nuno overtook tradition and created Toino Abel, whose products are selling all over the world.
It’s a craft that is slowly dying , and Nuno is trying to maintain it with his project.

Links:
Toino Abel site
Toino Abel FB
Toino Abel etsy

Barcelona

Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic

Those who know me are (were) aware of one curious thing, I don’t (didn’t) have a good relation with Barcelona.
I am not sure if it was a result of various coincidences, but my one and only visit to Barcelona some 10 years ago, didn’t go the best way and I never wished to go there again … until my friend Monica moved to Barcelona a year ago.

Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic

Well, after she moved there I start thinking about option of visiting her, and giving that city a new chance, since deep down I knew last visit was bad experience because of all kind of bed lack and coincidences …
And I did it, I traveled to Barcelona a month ago, to visit Monica, spend some time with her, had weekend escape from all responsibilities and enjoy good food and great company.

Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic

We ate at Betlem and Granja Petitbo (oh that gluten free orange cake …), learned how to make magic with flowers at Gang and the Wool, visited a beautiful Pols ceramic studio and spent hours at Festivalet ..and I can’t wait to go there again!!!

Barcelona | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic

Food and Lifestyle Photography and Styling Workshop Alentejo

Food and Lifestyle Photography and Styling Workshop Alentejo

I met Marta a year ago. Marta in person was exactly as I imagined she would be, while reading her blog. We had a click. Since then we kept contact, share our lows and highs, ask advices from each other…
I kind of always knew I wanted to do a project with her… I love her work and the idea of the workshop came… and, come on, we are the two bloggers with the longest blog names out there. It just had to be!
So, I am really excited to announce our May workshop at the beautiful Cabeça da Cabra!!!

Food and Lifestyle Photography and Styling Workshop Alentejo

Each picture you take should be an unique experience, should tell a story. You have everything you need to achieve it – your camera, magical natural light and props you like. Sometimes all you need is to understand how to look, so you see what’s so special and extraordinary in each meal you want to shot.
We will help you to play with shadows, use colours and choose angles.
We will style food together, talk about photography, share our tricks, meet local makers, experience and eat delicious Portuguese delicacies.

Food and Lifestyle Photography and Styling Workshop Alentejo

Join Marta (WSIEFBT) and me for 5 days of the food photography workshop (4-8th of May ) on the beautiful coast of Portugal. We will share our knowledge, experience and help you to discover your own style. You’ll learn how to style and shoot indoors, how and when to find the best light. You will also experience shooting in the most unpredictable conditions like on a beach during a specially prepared and styled picnic, while talking to local fishermen and makers. Most importantly, you will learn to tell a story with your pictures… and spend all this time surrounded by food and gorgeous Portuguese architecture and culture.

Details:
– dates: 4th – 8th of May
– price: 1100-1500€ varies on accommodation options
– 8-12 participants
– 3 whole days of food and lifestyle photography
– accommodation at Cabeça da Cabra
– 4 breakfasts
– 3 lunches
– 4 dinners
– drinks and snacks during the workshop

Price does not include transfer from and to the airport.
Rooms are double and triple.

Deposit of 50% is needed for registration and a final payment will be due March 31, 2016.

There will be no refunds on cancellation.

For reservation please contact us on: wsiefbt@gmail.com or little.upside.down.cake@gmail.com and we will send you more details.

Mini by Luna

Mini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Mini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicMini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Mini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Mini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicMini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Mini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Mini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicMini by Luna | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Mini by Luna

Back in November I worked with Mini by Luna , my favourite shop in Lisbon (so you can understand my excitement about it). They launched online shop and I photographed products for house.
It was such a fun doing this session inside the shop with people coming and going, stopping at the window looking in .. quite an experience.

P.S. if you didn’t have time doing shopping for holidays I suggest you to look here

Spelt Cinnamon Rolls

I can imagine a perfect world where everybody get along and creatives collaborate with each other.
Results of this could be stunning and so surprising. We can learn about ourselves and get inspired from others.
I want to believe that world is possible.

Last week I had a chance to spend some time with my Berlin friend Marta and besides daily routine and a lot of coffee talk, we wanted to do something together. Since it’s a holidays season and my friend Chelsea promised she will teach me how to make wreath we gathered one morning, baked cinnamon rolls, made wreath and above all had a lot of fun styling and photographing [and eating those rolls after]. And yes .. I am already a wreath master!!

Spelt Cinnamon Rolls | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Spelt Cinnamon Rolls | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Spelt Cinnamon Rolls | Photography by Sanda VuckovicSpelt Cinnamon Rolls | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic
Spelt Cinnamon Rolls | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic

Spelt Cinnamon Rolls

(adapted from Kinfolk Table by Rebekah and Wille Yli-Luoma)

For the dough:
500g spelt flour
250 ml rice milk (room temperature)
1tsp dry yeast
80g coconut sugar
pinch of salt
80g soy margarine (room temperature)
1tsp ground cardamom

For the filling:
100 g coconut sugar
1tsp ground cinnamon
1tsp ground cardamom
100 g soy margarine (room temperature)

In a medium bowl stir the flour, sugar, cardamom, salt and yeast. Add soy margarine and work with your hands until you get fine crumbs. Pour the milk over the dry ingredients and start kneading it. Knead for about 10 minutes more. The dough should not be sticky.
Place the dough in a bowl and cover.
Allow it to rest for about 1 hour, or until it doubles in size.

Whisk together the butter with sugar and spices for the filling.

After the dough has doubled in size, place it on a lightly floured counter.
Use a rolling pin to roll the dough to a rectangle. Spoon the filling over the top, spreading evenly, leaving a clean 1 cm border around the edges.
Start by rolling the shortest side of the dough.
Using a sharp knife, cut the cylinder into 8 triangles. Pick up the top point of the triangle and press it tightly into the center.
Place the rolls into a lined baking tray.Cover them with a clean dish towel and allow to rise for about 1h.
In the meantime preheat the oven to 200C.
Bake for 10-12 min or until golden brown.

Credits:
Flowers: Chelsea Fuss
Styling: Marta Greber | Sanda Pagaimo
Photography : Sanda Pagaimo
Model: Marta Greber

Note: You can find few tutorials on wreath making on Frolic

Vegan Spelt Croissants

I love challenges. Those that somebody else define for me or the ones in which I challenge myself.
I am not speaking about huge challenges here… those ones would define for life… it’s more about small ones, like for example me challenging myself to come with a perfect recipe for vegan croissants.

It started with my mum’s recipe for croissants. The recipe called for butter, egg and wheat… which would mean I couldn’t eat it. For somebody who love croissants, that was simply unacceptable.
So it started… no eggs, no butter and spelt instead of wheat.

I will just tell you that my family ate croissants very often in this last month, until this Saturday, when I served them a new batch and my daughter turned to me and said: ‘Mum, these taste like normal croissants, flaky and light and even better!!!’.
Yes!!! I reached the goal and felt so proud!
So, today I share a perfect recipe for spelt vegan croissants and, if you make them, please let me know.

*****

Eu adoro desafios. Daqueles que alguém define para mim ou aqueles em que eu própria me desafio.
Não estou neste caso a falar sobre grandes desafios… daqueles que definem a vida… é mais sobre os pequenos, como por exemplo, desafiar-me a encontrar a receita perfeita para croissants vegan.

Tudo começou com a receita da minha mãe para croissants. A receita pedia manteiga, ovos e trigo… o que significa que eu não podia comer. Para alguém que adora croissants, isso era simplesmente inaceitável.
Então comecei… nada de ovos, manteiga e espelta em vez de trigo.

Vou apenas dizer-vos que a minha família comeu muitas vezes croissants neste último mês, até este sábado, quando eu lhes servi um novo lote e a minha filha se virou para mim e disse: ‘Mãe, estes sabem a croissants normais, folhados e leves e até melhores!!!’.
Sim!!! Eu alcancei o meu objetivo e senti-me tão orgulhosa!
Por isso hoje partilho uma receita perfeita para croissants vegan de espelta e, se se os fizerem, por favor avisem-me.

Vegan Spelt Croissants | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Vegan Spelt Croissants | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicVegan Spelt Croissants | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic

Vegan Spelt Croissants

(makes 32 small croissants)

800g spelt flour
7g dry yeast
200ml rice milk
200ml coconut yogurt
200ml olive oil
200g coconut oil (room temperature)

pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 200ºC.

Mix all the ingredients (except coconut oil), work well. Cover with a tea towel and let rise for two hours in a warm place. The dough should have double in size.
Make 16 balls, and roll each one with a rolling pin (to get a size of a dessert plate).
Spread coconut oil on 14 of the small disks and put 7 each on top of the other, repeat with the other 7, finish with the disks without oil.

Roll it again with a rolling pin (until 1cm thick) and cut into 16 equal peaces.
Roll it into croissants and put on a baking sheet.
Brush with water and sprinkle with poppy or sesame seeds.
Bake for 20 min or until golden.

Vegan Plum Crumble Cake

Vegan Plum Crumble Cake | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Vegan Plum Crumble Cake | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicVegan Plum Crumble Cake | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
Vegan Plum Crumble Cake | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic

November is my favourite month. It’s time when nature slow down, colours change, colourful leaves cover sidewalks and I wake up into the foggy and chilly mornings. It ‘s a time I want to slow down, get cosy, bake like crazy and spend long nights knitting with a cup of tea by my side.
It’s breeze make me calm and I feel happy with all of the changes around me.

I was born one cold November night ,one more reason I feel connection with it. Every year I celebrate that day surrounded with my family and those I spent a year with.
This year I didn’t have just a “birth day” but a “birth week”. We did so many great things and had a nice gathering … and this cake was one of the things I made.

Vegan Plum Crumble Cake

(adapted from My New Roots by Sarah Britton)

Crumb:
175g spelt flakes
80ml agave syrup
70g chopped walnuts
1ts ground cinnamon
1ts ground cardamom
2tbs spelt flour
80g coconut oil, chilled
1/4 ts sea salt

In a bowl, combine spelt flakes, agave syrup, walnuts, cinnamon, cardamom, flour, oil and salt.

Cake:
300g spelt flour
2ts baking powder
1ts baking soda
1/2 tbs ground cardamom
1/4tbs cinnamon
1/4tbs ground ginger
1⁄2ts fine sea salt
90ml coconut oil
240ml agave syrup
300ml rice milk
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped out and reserved
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
6 medium plums

Preheat the oven to 180°C.
In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, spices and salt. Whisk to combine.
In a medium saucepan over low-medium heat, whisk together the oil, agave syrup, milk and vanilla seeds. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk to remove any lumps. Slowly add vinegar and mix to combine.

Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin. Place plum halves, cut side up. Sprinkle with crumble and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean, approximately 40min. Let the cake cool completely before removing it from the tin.

LUDC Shop :: Winter Atmosphere

LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicLUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicLUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicLUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic
LUDC Shop| Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic

Winter is slowly installing around here, shades are deeper and darker and gray tones are dominant.
Winter is bringing colorful leaves, cold air , foggy mornings and winter gathering around the table with friends and family.
Holiday season is in front and LUDC Shop changed it’s look and colors, and got prepared for all of this.

Handwriting : Eglė Bazaraitė

Labneh with Roasted Plums

Labneh with Roasted Plums | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicLabneh with Roasted Plums | Photography and Styling by Sanda VuckovicLabneh with Roasted Plums | Photography and Styling by Sanda Vuckovic

I started writing this post so many times today. I am sitting in front of my PC for more then hour ..
I can write about autumn, about juicy plums, about getting back to routine and the fact my 9 years old son is in love.
I can write about friends gatherings , plum tart I baked few days ago .
I can write about a fact a number of people in our small house is still 3 and about how much we all miss him …
…but today I chose not to … I chose to close my eyes and think it’s Friday ..

Labneh with Roasted Plums

(inspired by Seven Spoons, Tara O’Brady)
serves 6

1/4 ts fine salt
800ml full fat plain yogurt made from goat milk
4 tbs icing sugar
zest of two lemons

6 plums
3/4 tbs coconut sugar
1/4 ts ground cinnamon
1/4 ts ground cardamom
1/4 ts ground ginger
amaretti cookies (optional)

Set super fine strainer over a bowl and line with double layer of cheesecloth. Stir the salt into the yogurt and scrap it to prepared strainer. Cover and refrigerate for 24h or until the labneh reach has reached the desired consistency.

Preheat oven to 180C
Cut plums into half and place them into roasted tin, cut side up. Sprinkle plums with coconut sugar and spices. Roast for 30min

Add icing sugar and lemon zest to labneh and divide between 6 plates.
Place two halves of plums over sweet labneh and crumble some amaretti cookies over.

Autumn Retreat

Autumn Retreat | Photography by Sanda Vuckovic | Graphic design by Eglė Bazaraitė

Autumn in the south is green – rain comes instead of snow here and oranges ripen nurtured by the winter sun. The shadows get longer, and the little brooks become filled with water. It is green, humid and certainly inspiring!

It is a moment when nature becomes slower, and we want to invite you to slow down too. And celebrate the crafts that require time, but cherish the spirit.

The retreat will celebrate creativity in the serene landscape of Alentejo, Portugal: Casas Caiadas will welcome all of us for the designated days dedicated to baking, photographing, macramé and knitting; lots of tea, fabulous local olives and cheese as well as some delicious wine from Alentejo.

We will gather in Casas Caiadas – a space of traditional architecture fully restored from a core of old water mills, in the heart of Alentejo with waterways, luscious green landscapes and megalithic rocks – a place to relish the beauty of life while sitting by a stream of water flowing between stones, surrounded by centennial olive trees, menhirs and a spirit of Iberian history.

During this retreat we’ll cook, photograph, talk and knit, take walks, learn macramé and share inspiring stories of how to get ready for the winter season. Photography and visual storytelling will be in the hands of Sanda Vuckovic Pagaimo. Joana Teixeira will introduce you to the most beautiful macramé knots with a nautical feel (after all Portugal is a nautical country!), and Egle Bazaraite will tell stories about local Portuguese breeds of sheep, share tips on hand spinning and teach knitting. The days will be busy with slowness!

Dates: November 19-22, 2015

Location: Casas Caiadas (1 hour south of Lisbon, near the small village of Sabugueiro, Alentejo, and a short drive from the city of Évora, UNESCO world heritage site.)

Availability: The workshop is open for 8 people only.

Cost: €980 (based on sharing a double room; cost does not include airfare or transport to and from the airport) which includes:
*3 nights stay at Casas Caiadas, a beautifully refurbished farmhouse in the Portuguese countryside, which we will have all to ourselves.
*2 full days of hands-on cooking, knitting, macramé and photography workshop
*all meals during your stay
*home-made snacks and refreshments during the workshop hours

Payment: 980€ bank transfer to confirm registration (in case of PayPall payment add 50€ fee)

Cancellation Policy: We ask that you confirm your attendance before registering. Unfortunately we cannot offer refunds on cancellations.

Graphic design : Eglė Bazaraitė
Photography : Sanda Vuckovic Pagaimo

*****

O Outono no Sul é verde – aqui chove em vez de nevar e as laranjas amadurecem alimentadas pelo sol de inverno. As sombras ficam mais longas, e os pequenos riachos ficam cheios de água. É verde, húmido e certamente inspirador!

É um momento em que a natureza se torna mais lenta, e queremos convidá-los a desacelerar também. E celebrar os ofícios que requerem tempo, mas valorizam o espírito.

O retiro vai glorificar a criatividade na paisagem serena do Alentejo, Portugal: Casas Caiadas vai acolher-nos a todos nesses dias dedicados à cozinha, fotografia, macramé e tricô; muito chá, azeitonas e queijos locais maravilhosos, bem como alguns deliciosos vinhos do Alentejo.

Vamo-nos reunir nas Casas Caiadas – um espaço de arquitectura tradicional totalmente restaurado a partir de um núcleo de antigos moinhos de água, no coração do Alentejo, com cursos de água, deliciosas paisagens verdes e pedras megalíticas – um lugar para saborear a beleza da vida enquanto sentado perto de um curso de água que corre entre pedras, cercado por oliveiras centenárias, menires e um espírito de história Ibérica.

Durante este retiro vamos cozinhar, fotografia, conversar e tricotar, fazer caminhadas, aprender macramé e partilhar histórias inspiradoras de como nos prepararmos para a temporada de inverno. A fotografia e narrativa visual estará nas mãos de Sanda Vuckovic Pagaimo. Joana Teixeira irá apresentar os mais belos nós macramé com um toque náutico (afinal Portugal é um país náutico!), e Egle Bazaraite vai contar histórias sobre as raças locais de ovelhas Portuguesas, partilhar dicas sobre fiação à mão e ensinar tricô. Os dias serão ocupados com lentidão!

Datas: 19-22 de Novembro, 2015

Localização: Casas Caiadas (1 hora a sul de Lisboa, perto da pequena aldeia de Sabugueiro, Alentejo, e a curta distância da cidade de Évora, Património Mundial da UNESCO.)

Disponibilidade: O workshop é apenas para 8 pessoas.

Custo: 980€ (baseado na partilha de quarto duplo; o custo não inclui passagem aérea ou de transporte de e para o aeroporto) que inclui:
*3 noites de estadia nas Casas Caiadas, uma linda quinta remodelada na região rural Portuguesa, na qual teremos exclusividade.
*2 dias completos de experiência prática de culinária, tricô, macramé e workshop de fotografia
*todas as refeições durante a sua estadia
*lanches e bebidas caseiras durante as horas dos workshops

Pagamento: transferência bancária de 980€ para confirmar a inscrição (no caso de pagamento por PayPall, adicionar 50€ de taxa)

Condições de Cancelamento: Pedimos que confirme a sua presença antes do registo. Infelizmente não podemos oferecer restituições para cancelamentos.

Design gráfico: Eglė Bazaraitė
Fotografia: Sanda Vuckovic Pagaimo

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