Blog Posts by The Vivant

  • How to Open Wine Without a Corkscrew

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
    Open wine bottle.Open wine bottle.Nothing, and we mean nothing will ruin a party, picnic, or impromptu celebration, quite like when you go to open a bottle of wine and realize you don't have a corkscrew. Seriously, who hasn't this happened to?


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    Luckily, the folks over at Mirabeau Wine have a solution, and it involves using your shoe. We imagine this would make a great party trick, and it also means something that is music to ours ears-that now you can drink wine anytime, anywhere.

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    Here's how to do it:

    Remove the foil cap from the bottle, then put the bottle into the shoe. Take the bottom of the shoe and place it against a wall. Using the shoe as a barrier between the bottom of the bottle and the wall, carefully bang the bottle against the wall. After a few hits, the cork will start to release from the bottle. After the cork is halfway out, you can

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  • 25 Ideas for Organizing and Storing Books

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
    A color-coordinated bookshelf. One of the hardest organizational conundrums for those in smalls spaces is what to do with books! Seriously, you might be surprised by all of the creative solutions for what to do with them. Here are 25 ideas.


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    1. Stack overflow books neatly on tables and chairs, creating decorative stacks.

    2. Use bookcases to enhance your home's décor-display a collection of artwork on lower shelves, and books on higher shelves.

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    3.Instead of traditional bookcases go for cube bookshelves, and treat each cube like a canvas.

    4. Create a cozy corner library using a pair of freestanding bookcases to create an artful display of books, magazines, and collections behind your sofa.

    5. Group wall-mount ledges and storage cubes on your walls to create a modern take on a book display. Paint the storage cubes and shelves the same color as your wall to create a

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  • How to Make Whipped Cream from Scratch in Five Minutes

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
    Whipped cream. Whipped cream makes a great treat for everything from ice cream to fruit, and if you stay away from the store bought variety, it actually is pretty healthy. Here is how to make it yourself in between five to ten minutes.


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    Ingredients

    1 pint/2 cups/16 ounces of heavy whipping cream
    4 tablespoons/1/4 cup of organic powdered sugar or cane sugar

    Tools Needed

    Large metal mixing bowl, chilled
    Wire whisk, chilled

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    Directions

    Chill your bowl and whisk in the freezer for at least 20 minutes. Pour the cream into the cold bowl and immediately start whipping it briskly with the whisk. Do this continuously for several minutes. Once the cream has doubled in thickness, stop and stir in the sugar. Whip it for another minute and taste. If it's not sweet enough, add more sugar.

    Keep whipping at a fast pace, switching the whisk between hands so your

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  • Golden Globes: What’s on This Year’s Menu

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
    Table setting for the 2014 Golden Globes.What makes The Golden Globes so much more fun than other Hollywood awards shows is that an actual dinner is served during the ceremony, adding a fun party vibe to the overall event. With that in knowledge, we know exactly what you are wondering-what do the celebs in attendance get to eat?


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    The Beverly Hilton's Executive Sous Chef Chris O'Connell recently revealed the exact menu of this year's Golden Globe Awards, and one word comes to mind, yum! Here's what the celebs can expect on their plates on Sunday night.

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    Appetizer Trio: Grilled eggplant with sundried tomato and pine nut hummus on seared tomato mini sweet pepper with feta cheese pomegranate herbs California olive oil on grilled pita grilled artichoke on multigrain tabbouleh and tahini.

    Entree: Mediterranean spice crusted braised beef short rib and sauteed

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  • How to Organize Your Shoes like a Pro

    By Alexandra Pauly, The Vivant

    Shoe organization

    It isn't a small task for Beth Shak, professional poker player, and proud owner of 1,200 pairs of shoes, to keep her closet organized. Shak's shoe collection, reportedly worth around $1 million, fills four password-protected closets and includes 700 pairs of Christian Louboutins alone.


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    Shak and her shoes have been featured on Good Morning America, The Today Show, and in the documentary, God Save My Shoes, and, no surprise, this shoe fiend is currently developing her own line of high-end shoes. Needless to say, when it comes to organizing shoes, Shak has it down to a science. And while you probably don't have quite as many as Shak has to organize, her tips will come in handy for everyone from the average stiletto lover to the biggest collectors out there (you know who you are).


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    1. Color Coordinate. "I organize my shoes by color, and I Read More »from How to Organize Your Shoes like a Pro
  • How to Cut the Security Line at the Airport

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
    Security line at JFK International Aiport in New York City. So you love to travel? Join the club. Love standing in those epically long security lines, taking off your shoes, and unpacking your suitcase for all to see? Not so much. You aren't alone. Here, some tips for cutting the security line.


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    1. Pay To Enroll in a PreCheck Program: Anyone can apply for the Global Entry, NEXUS, and SENTRI programs. Global Entry, the most popular of the programs, costs $100 to enroll in. If you're granted membership, you'll automatically be opted-in to PreCheck and can use it when flying participating airlines. So what exactly does that mean? You'll get expedited in the security line, and will only have to pass through a metal detector, so basically its like flying in 1982, in the best possible way.

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    2. Be Invited to Enroll as a Frequent Flyer: Another way to enroll in the PreCheck program is to be invited by an airline

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  • How to Update Your Home Without Renovating

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant
    Interior of a Jonathan Adler designed room. The new year is upon, which means you are probably thinking about ways to upgrade your life, your home included. Doing a full renovation is costly, time intensive, and just seriously out of the cards for most folks, but that doesn't mean you can't get that home upgrade you deserve without doing a total overhaul.

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    We consulted with interior design guru and furniture designer Jonathan Adler, and author of the book 100 Ways to Happy Chic Your Life for his top tips on giving your home a new look that doesn't require breaking down any walls. Adler shared with us, "A new look for your pad doesn't always require a team of contractors." One word-phew!

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    1. Paint. "Don't be afraid of color," Adler shares. "Life should be chic, glamorous, and colorful-and so should your home."

    2. Rearrange the Furniture.

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  • Top 10 Detox Superfoods

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant

    goji berriesAte one too many cookies, and had one too many cocktails during the holidays? You aren't alone. Instead of going on some crazy post-holiday diet, add a few of these superfoods, everything from goji berries to artichokes, into your diet to help cleanse your body!

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    Goji Berries: Goji berries will help to boost your vitamin C and beta-carotene intake. Vitamin C can help remove waste from your body, while beta-carotene improves liver performance.


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    Seaweed: Seaweed will help cleanse your body of lead, cadmium and the radioactive chemical strontium. It is also a metabolism-booster.

    Brazil Nuts: These nuts are packed with selenium, which help you cleanse your body of mercury.

    Beets: This root vegetable is chock full of magnesium, iron, zinc and calcium to help flush out toxins. It also has cancer

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  • 10 Great Sparkling Wines Under $20

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant

    champagneChampagne and celebrating the New Year are practically synonymous. And while inexpensive champagne is hard to come by (as in sparkling wine hailing from the specific region in France known as Champagne), plenty of great sparkling wine options produced everywhere from Spain to California abound. Here, our top 10 picks! Let's get this party started!

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    1. Mumm Brut Rose (Napa Valley). Strawberry aromas and lush, ripe flavors of cherry and vanilla, have made Domaine Mumm a classic to celebrate with. $16.99, available at bevmo.com.

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    2. Mionetto Prosecco (Italy). This fruity and dry prosecco is the ultimate crowd pleaser. You really can't go wrong with it, especially if you are planning a big soiree. $15.99, available at wine.com.

    3. Domaine Ste. Michelle Brut (Washington). Not too sweet, perfectly crisp, and surprisingly complex for a

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  • 10 Ideas for How to Recycle Your Christmas Tree After the Holidays

    By Leah Bourne, The Vivant

    christmas treeYou likely have spent a lot of time (and money) decorating your Christmas tree, and when the holidays are done you are probably going to be stuck wondering: "What should I do with this thing?" You aren't alone. With that very conundrum in mind, here are 10 creative ideas on what to do with your tree after the holidays are over.

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    1. Save it, and turn it into fuel for your fireplace. Yes, you need to store the wood until it dries, but this is still a great way to recycle your tree.


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    2. Use it to create saplings. Place a branch from the tree in a plastic cup with vermiculite and keep it moist. Once there is a strong root system, add in compost and soil.

    3. Extract pine sap from your tree and use it for its medicinal and antibacterial properties. You can even use pine sap to seal wounds!

    4. Use your tree to create

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