Wine and love on Valentine’s day

Different traditions for Valentine’s day that are more attractive than just candies and flowers

Valentine’s day is usually described as a curse nowadays. The gestures of love are never enough, the attention to detail is never satisfying, the singles have never been so lonely. The sad thing is that this day should inspire love and happiness, not become a competition of whose boyfriend bought the biggest bouquet. That’s why I’ll present you another holiday that is celebrated on the 14th of February.

In Bulgaria, we’re celebrating a lot of American or Catholic holidays that we often watch in the movies and then imitate. Lucky for us, we’re not going crazy about St. Valentine’s because we have a much better alternative. We’re celebrating the day of all wine-grower and winemakers. The 14th of February is the day when the first cutting off the wine branches. This tradition is performed only by men because it is said that the vines should “give birth” to a new vintage. In the meantime, the women of the village are preparing bread with the shape of a wine leaf. After this, the men make crowns from the branches and dance traditional Bulgarian dances around the vineyard.

With a group of friends, we visited a city in the South of Bulgaria that is famous for its viticulture. The small city is called Melnik and has preserved his spirit throughout the centuries. You can sense it while walking the main (and only) street in the smallest city in Bulgaria. The architecture is the same as it was during the Bulgarian Renaissance (18th century). The good thing is that it’s forbidden to build something that will ruin that little piece of history.

We were invited by one of the biggest wineries and got to celebrate the holiday with them. We started the day with a coffee, unlike most of the visitors who had already full glass of wine at 11. We walked into the vineyard and participated in the cutting of the vines. To respect the old traditions, the men were cutting and the women were filming. We even received small branches that we could plant so that we could make our own little vineyard someday.

We then participated in the wine tour. As I had worked in France in a château, I knew a little bit about the technique and could compare the differences. This winery had a small production, but it was more of a boutique winery only designated for connoisseurs. We were invited to the tunnels under the winery, where the wine was aging in barrels. It was like entering the crypt of a haunted castle with a much better smell in the air. The best part was, of course, the wine tasting. After the stories about the process, we could taste the different sorts of wine that they were making. It goes without saying, that we bought a whole box.

One of the wines is called “Hailstorm”. I was fascinated with the story that is surrounding this wine. One year there was a big hailstorm in Melnik and most of the grapes were destroyed. The production was very small this year, but the wine was better than ever. The secret is that the grapes that survived the natural disaster were stronger and richer in flavors and that made the wine different than the others.

We also had a walk in the town center. We went to one of the three monasteries overlooking the city. We climbed some 300 steps, but don’t be fooled by the number – these steps were so uneven that even the iWatch considered it as good training. The view was incredible. On the one side there was the city, on the other side there were the Earth Pyramids. They are a geological phenomenon made of sand and with different shapes.

Eye Catching Accessory Trend for 2019

Hats are an accessory that is hardly used in everyday outfits. Every time you decide to put a hat on, people immediately start to notice you more. That’s why I’m very surprised that fashion savvy people do not have a hat collection in their closet. I personally have only a few, but I get a really special feeling when I wear them.


One thing that never gets out of style is the beret. If you ask a French girl if she has a collection of berets, she’ll definitely say “No”. This is such a cliché. I lived a couple of months in Nice and then moved to Bordeaux, but for the whole time I never ever saw a girl with a beret. That’s not stopping me from wearing one myself. The one that I chose for these pictures is a classic plaid cap that is usually used when describing Sherlock Holmes.

Berets are romantic and chic and sometimes are bringing a regular outfit to the next level. It’s a tricky piece of accessory because it could easily be the “too much” element. One can dress down the hat with an oversized sweater or boyfriend jeans. At first look, the beret is a very girly hat, but at the same time, every tomboy could style it in a more casual way.

My whole outfit is a combination of different plaid pattern. Plaid is used a lot during the fall season, but since it’s still not snowing in my home town, I took the opportunity to go for a walk with my plaid dress. High boots and no high heels is a cheap trick to be comfortable and still look like you made an effort in the morning while choosing your outfit.


Oscar Glam (Part II)

Gowns and Outfit predictions for Oscars 2019

In my second post about the Oscars, I will talk a little bit about the red carpet. This by itself is a big event for which the whole fashion world is waiting. The night of the Oscars is always Sunday. My sister and I have a tradition to watch it together even when we’re in different countries. We have conference calls and discuss everything that happens from the red carpet up until the end. Our only problem is that we live in Europe and that means that the Oscars begin in the middle of the night. Usually, they finish around 7 AM and we sleep only a couple of hours before going to work/uni. After all, it’s Monday.

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The day starts with a big coffee and for me – with the “Best dressed” articles of Vogue and Elle. My sister is more into movies than me, so she’s analyzing the movies that received the statues. At one point when I got into Pinterest, I created a pin wall with all the gowns that I thought are red carpet worthy. For this year, I selected outfits from the Haute Couture Fashion Week (21-24.01) that you can check out here:

I went through every fashion show and selected the best outfits. My personal favorites are Dior and Zuhair Murad who I discovered a while ago and immediately fell in love with his feminine designs. In my opinion, his gowns are just made for the red carpet and they leave a long-lasting impression on everyone. That’s probably the reason why more and more actresses and singers choose his designs for special occasions.
Overall the nude tones prevail. Every outfit from the Dior fashion show that I would wear on the red carpet is in the rose-gold palette. The theme of the show was “circus” and as usual, there were some elements of dancing/performing. I’m a big fan of Dior, but that was not one of the best collections.

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Alexis Mabille is a French designer, who previously worked with Hedi Slimane, chose more vivid colors – dark blue, red, yellow.  Stephane Rolland took a page from Beauty and the Beast’s notebook while creating the beautiful yellow gown. I hope we’ll see it on the red carpet, even though Rihanna already had her Bell at the ball moment a couple of years ago on the steps of the Met Gala. Another remarkable outfit resembles Cleopatra’s gown, that’s why I thought that it deserves an honorary place in this list.

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Alexandre Vauthier shows outfits for the badass women that we all are. My personal favorite is the one with the black scarf. Even though I’m a big fan of Chanel, I didn’t see any outfits that potentially would end on the Oscar Red Carpet. I still chose two outfits; just to show the high heel mules and you know… Kaia Gerber is awesome.

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Givenchy is one of the brands that inspire me the most. At the moment their artistic director is Clare Waight Keller who did a tremendous job. A lot of latex, interesting shapes and giant blazers – the whole collection is designed for the strong, modern, businesswoman. I would love to see at least of the pieces on the red carpet this year.




All pictures are from Getty Images.

Oscar Glam (Part I)

We all dream in gold – getting ready for Oscars 2019

Exactly 2 weeks ago, 2 great things happened – the Haute Couture Fashion Week and the Oscar nominations were announced. At first glance, these two events have nothing to do with each other, but they are both considered as art and often complement each other. There is even an Oscar dedicated to the art of Fashion and Costume design. I would also put Hairstyle and Makeup in the same basket and it makes two different Oscar categories. To check all Oscar nomination, I recommend you this site:

Even though I’m very interested in movies, in the last couple of years I’m more dedicated to TV shows. Nevertheless, when the time comes, I try to watch at least the movies that will win more than one Oscar for sure. Last years it was “Shape of Water”. I won’t break into details and I’ll simply say that I hated the movie. It was poorly written and did not bring any value to the art of movie making. I guess my opinion doesn’t matter, since the Academy decided, it was worthy for the Best Picture statue. When you think about it, that’s the same price movies like “Lord of the rings”, “The King’s Speech”, “Gone with the Wind” and so many more of our favorite movies had won.

The Favorite Official Poster

This year, I’m excited about “The Favorite”, mostly because I love the 18th century and its atmosphere. The cast is great and since it’s leading with 10 nominations for an Oscar, chances are pretty high that somebody will be going home with an Oscar. Some movies in the list have surprisingly been left out of the competition. Many people wonder why “Black Panther” got 7 nominations and “Avengers” – only 1 since they are from the same universe. The student became the master I guess… The irony is pretty high with “A Quiet Place” being nominated for “Best Sound Editing”. The Academy has a sense of humor after all. Nothing against the movie or the crew.

Many movies are talking about racism in different ways. This topic is becoming more and more present in modern art and modern culture. It is interesting to see how Hollywood is shaping after the new face of society. We are becoming more open to being different and this is slowly showing in movies. It’s unusual that European movies are being nominated for categories other than “Best Foreign-Language Movie”. I highly appreciate it, being an Eastern-European and I can only hope that this will continue in the future.
On the other hand, a genre that is living its Renaissance is the musicale. Everyone knows that the USA is famous for it, but for a couple of years (even decades) musicales were left in the shadows. Personally, I’m not a big fan of adult movies where everyone is breaking into a song every 10 minutes, but I was delighted with “Bohemian Rhapsody”. I loved the fact that the screenwriters kept the style very “early Hollywood” and left out all the nasty rumors about sex and drugs. We were admiring the magic of music and enjoyed the rise of 4 young men to fame. It was a beautiful movie that made everyone in the theater cry (I’m not exaggerating). If that doesn’t count as something, I don’t know what is good enough for an Oscar!

Bohemian Rhapsody Official Poster

Why ballet isn’t the best activity for young girls

Drawing a parallel between the merciless corporate world and the even more merciless world of prima ballerinas

They say “A leopard can’t change its spots” and in most cases they are right. I came to realize this when I watched a video of my Dance school from 10 years ago. It had nothing to do with the #10yearchallenge, but with pure luck. One of my friends, which I met in the Dance school, showed me the video as something cute and funny from our teenage years. Instead of making me laugh, the video made me extremely mad.

The video contained mostly pictures of different groups and different dance styles. The first thing I noticed was that 1/3 of the pictures was of only one girl – the favorite of our teacher. I started thinking about my experience and realized that my memories were mostly bittersweet. At one point I was dancing in two different groups, going twice as much to classes as the rest of the girls and studied twice as many routines. There was a routine made especially for us by an American choreographer and this was our best dance, the diamond in our crown. The routine needed only 4 girls and so we had to audition for it. After we all learned it, we had to perform it for a month, before any decision was made. They chose 4 girls that would perform it for competitions and festivals and 8 girls for our internal concert, organized for our parents. I didn’t make the cut.

Now I find it stupid that this little thing mattered so much to me and that I cried for months about it. But the thing is – the dance was purely ballet and the girls who auditioned were everything else from hip hop to contemporary. The 4 chosen ones were all girls that were in the Dance school 3-4 years longer than me and I had accepted it. But the other girls were in no way better than me. They were simply part of the “advanced” group and I was new to this group because I had danced ballet for the last 8 years.
10 years later, nothing has changed. At least not in the concept. I’m not going to dance class, but I’m going to work. Instead of a routine, I auditioned for a manager position. Again the guy who got the job was just a sleazebag, who was BFFs with one of the 3 people who were interviewing us. As an excuse, I got the feedback that I had never done something similar to the manager’s tasks. As a “bonus” I got the opportunity to help my manager with her tasks so that next time I’ll be more familiar with them. Joke’s on me because now I’m my manager’s assistant (don’t get me wrong, I like these tasks) and I’m doing my regular tasks like everyone else in my team. Basically, it’s twice as much work with the same salary. I’m pouring my heart and soul into both types of tasks because I’m a perfectionist and I simply like doing them.

I saw a pattern here and I need to change something. The fact that I like working hard and not slacking like most of my colleagues is usually the reason why people are taking advantage of me. Learn a lesson from my experience – don’t let your boss make a fool out of you, just because you’re a good person.


PS: I’ll keep you posted if I ever break the circle.


The reason why I like Mondays

Weekly motivation that everyone needs from time to time

It’s such a cliché to hate Mondays, but every week or so a new meme pops up about hating Mondays. I find it strange that we don’t celebrate new beginnings. Like most things in life, it depends from your mind set. Don’t focus on the negativity. If you hate your job, why don’t you look for a new one during the weekend? If you feel underestimated, you can always ask for new responsibilities. Most bosses love giving new tasks to overly motivated employees. And if you suffer from the opposite and feel too stressed, take an evening yoga class with a friend so that you can relax. There is always a way.

Continue reading “The reason why I like Mondays”