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Our chefs, Wit & Wonder Gifts team and blog editor take the stress out of planning a full-course menu that’s memorable (in a good way) and won’t keep you stuck in the kitchen all night. In a special What’s Cooking series, we’re serving up six perfectly paired, delicious recipes and inspiration for holiday entertaining—from drinks and dessert to décor and gifts.

Nordstrom recipe for easy Peppercorn-Crusted Lamb Chops with Sriracha & Fig Jam; photo by Jeff Powell.

The beauty of this recipe is in its serious simplicity. From start to finish, you’ll be done in well under an hour—with minimal effort—and have two gorgeous racks of lamb to show for it. To complement the lamb chops, an unexpected combo of Sriracha & fig jam create a one-step sauce that’s a little sweet, a little spicy and a lot easy. Plated up and accompanied by those Gratinéed Brussels Sprouts, these peppercorn rib chops make for a main course that leave you with a table full of happy guests and compliments to the chef.

Nordstrom recipe for easy Peppercorn-Crusted Lamb Chops with Sriracha & Fig Jam; photo by Jeff Powell.

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Since The Velvet Underground quietly disintegrated in the early ’70s there have been numerous reissues and special collections of their body of work—from their now-groundbreaking first album featuring Nico (with a Warhol-designed cover) to their last studio album, Loaded, a disc chock-full of grooving pop hits. Their parent label, Universal, has made good use of whatever demo tracks, behind-the-scenes photos and anecdotal tidbits they can wrangle to create sets that are a collector’s dream. And there are some pretty rabid VU collectors out there.

Next week, the third Velvets release (commonly referred to as The Grey Album) gets the deluxe reissue treatment. It’s a lovely record, and the first where the band shifted from a dark, dirty NY-art-scene feel to tunes that were more melodic and melancholic. The band also shifted members: Welsh music prodigy and viola player John Cale departed and a young bass player from Long Island named Doug Yule signed on.

Historically, Yule hasn’t really been one to do tons of interviews, but since he happens to be this writer’s father he kind of had to grant us one (thanks, Dad).

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Our latest Pop-In Shop—GIFT & GOhouses sleigh-loads of gifts as unique as the loved ones on your list.

How unique, you ask? Think leather harnesses favored by Lady Gaga, blacked-out Rolexes customized exclusively for us, and 14-karat emoticons worth 1,000 words.

Keep reading for insights from Olivia Kim (Nordstrom’s Director of Creative Projects, Pop-In curator and resident wrap artist) on the treasures she hopes to find nestled under her Christmas cactus this holiday season.

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Seattle, it seems, loves a good jersey dress. Or a great American designer. Or an exceptional life storylike The Woman I Wanted to Be by Diane von Furstenberg.

Or all of the above. The standing-room-only crowd at Elliott Bay Books on Friday, November 14 was likely compelled by a number of reasons, and when a patterned-shirt-dress clad DVF came through the back hallway door and strode up the left aisle all of them coalesced in the form of whoops, yelps and lots of applause.

(left) @lovemooyoung via Instagram | (right) @jamilghores via Instagram

Seattle Art Museum’s Chiyo Ishikawa introduced von Furstenberg and our own Laura Cassidy, editor of the Thread, and the two began a 15-minute open dialog concerning literary aspirations (hers were simple: to tell her mother’s story, but she realized that to do so required telling her own), character studies (the memoir is studded with stars playing really interesting parts) and civic duties (she gave us a few tips on how to get a Seattle version of New York’s Highline: in short, demand beautiful public space and don’t give up).

The mic then went to the room and the most Tweeted and Instagrammed moment emerged: a fan asked the designer what her favorite part of being a woman was and DVF answered, “That I’m not a man,” and bent in half in laughter at her own joke.

We’re a biased bunch of writers, sure, but for our money, we loved it when she called herself a femmmmmmminist—that’s a feminist with lots of M’s, as she explained. And we really loved the time she compared a writer’s breakthrough moment to an orgasm. What a gal.

We spent a little time with DVF offstage and behind the scenes before all of that went down, and took the opportunity to shoot the first in what we hope will be your favorite new video series. Check it out here.

SHOP: DVF

Eliza J Metallic Tulip Dress

Eliza J Metallic Tulip Dress

Office functions, galas, family gatherings, friendly get-togethers—between now and the new year there are a lot of parties coming. Bring ‘em on. We love a good party; it’s an excellent excuse to buy a new dress. Win, win! If you’re of the same mind, head over to our dress trend guide. It’s full of metallic minis, lacy LBDs and all manner of other beautiful frocks.

Shop: Our Party Dress Guide

Vince Camuto Sequin Scuba Shift Dress
BB Dakota Lace Fit & Flare Dress | Vince Camuto Scuba Shift Dress

Our Zella PRO expert instructors are ready to get you going with inspiration, info and tips on staying fit and healthy. Here Lisa Kristin—a group fitness instructor at the Seattle Gym—talks about cold-weather workouts.

Lisa-Zella-Pro-1

Fall leaves, crisp air, changing seasons. The darker mornings and evenings are here, but don’t let that stop your outdoor workouts. You can still enjoy biking, running and more, you just have to be prepared—and you have to be layered. Here’s our quick guide to getting comfortable, equipped and active.

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The gifting season is in full swing, and this month’s Book Club is all about fresh-off-the-press tomes that are well-suited to sartorially inclined bookworms.

Hair: Guido by Guido Palau, Andrew Bolton, Tim Blanks, David Sims

Dubbed the “world’s most in-demand hair stylist” by British Vogue, Guido Palau is an artist and hair is his medium. For his second book, Guido skirts the retrospective route in lieu of a fresh approach: his perspective of hair in the new millennium. Teaming up with long-time cohort and fashion photography luminary David Sims, Guido presents seventy unique looks created just for this compendium. As a pioneer of the unstructured shag popularized during the ’90s grunge era, Guido shows off how his influence has shaped the modern era of hair as well as how he is striving for a wild and radical future.

Miles of M·A·C by James Gager and Miles Aldridge

Makeup junkies rejoice! The kings of color released an anthology of over 200 photos, featuring 100 looks that exemplify M·A·C Cosmetics’ 30-year reign as the vanguard of high-concept, high-fashion beauty. Penned by James Gager, M·A·C’s senior vice president and group creative director, the book gets its name from photographer Miles Aldrige, whose LTR with M·A·C shaped the visionary aesthetic fans have come to expect from the brand.

Study of Pose: 1,000 Poses by Coco Rocha and Steven Sebring

A beautiful (and thick!) collection of black-and-white photos from “the Queen of Pose”, Coca Rocha, doing what she does best: masterfully contorting her body with elegance and grace. Shot in just three days with photographer Steven Sebring, this portfolio of body phraseology can be used as a handy reference for working photographers and models. Or to simply marvel at the beloved model’s uncanny ability to pull off a zillion different looks tout de suite.

Our chefs, Wit & Wonder Gifts team and blog editor take the stress out of planning a full-course menu that’s memorable (in a good way) and won’t keep you stuck in the kitchen all night. In a special What’s Cooking series, we’re serving up six perfectly paired, delicious recipes and inspiration for holiday entertaining—from drinks and dessert to décor and gifts.

Nordstrom recipe for Gratinéed Brussels Sprouts with prosciutto and Gruyère cheese; photo by Jeff Powell.

Have picky eaters at your table? Not to worry. The layers of salty, complex prosciutto and melted Gruyère in this gratin recipe are far too tempting for even the biggest Brussels sprout-ophobe. Plus, cream added to a super-reduced chicken stock creates an incredible sauce that coats the caramelized Brussels sprouts in yum. Since that Bistro Crab Salad first course was so light and refreshing, we’re okay with this gratin side dish falling on the more indulgent end of things.

Nordstrom recipe for Gratinéed Brussels Sprouts with prosciutto and Gruyère cheese; photo by Jeff Powell.

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Congratulations to our forever-fabulous guest editor Sarah Jessica Parker, winner of InStyle’s 2014 Social Media Rookie of the Year Award! Over the past 12 months, posts about her fly-off-the-shelves SJP Collection, charity events and generally dreamy life in NYC have earned her over 625,000 followers on Twitter and 531,000 on Instagram. #OMGSJP.

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Virtual acceptance speech: The ‘rookie’ graciously thanks her peeps.

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November 14, 2014

Listen Up! TV On The Radio

As mega fans of TV On The Radio (their debut album, Desperate Youth, Blood Thirsty Babes, is one of those “desert island” picks), we were pretty psyched to see that next week marks the release of their newest record, Seeds, after a several-year hiatus.

And then our inner geek freaked when we saw who was in the Speed Racer–inspired video for “Happy Idiot”: Paul Reubens (yes, Pee-wee Herman) and Amy Pond from Doctor Who (who apparently does not ride around in the TARDIS all day and is, in fact, an actress named Karen Gillan).

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