Book Review: Cupcakes and Cashmere

Cupcakes and Cashmere is a DIY guide for navigating through life—especially if you happen to be a woman in search of simple yet stylish solutions in the areas of home, food and entertaining, style and beauty.

 "Cupcakes and Cashmere" by Emily Schuman, published by Abrams Image, 2012;

“Cupcakes and Cashmere” by Emily Schuman, published by Abrams Image, 2012;

Author Emily Schuman expands on her blog Cupcakes and Cashmere, which contains advice in these lifestyle areas. Her book offers a wealth of tips on everything from organizing your closets and navigating flea markets to making buttercream frosting and using a curling iron safely (go through the curling motions with it turned off a few times until it feels comfortable in your hand).

And since you want to look stylish while going about your daily tasks, she provides tips on how to look your best while doing them. Her on-trend advice is accompanied by fun and informative photos—many of the author herself—on nearly every page, showing not only show the item being discussed but also how to wear, display or make it. Schuman takes her own advice by keeping the book’s contents organized for maximum efficiency. Information regarding the lifestyle categories is organized by season so you can easily find the section that pertains to your particular interest. some home-related tips and techniques found in the book:

Food and Entertaining — Think beyond elaborate (and expensive) floral displays when hosting a party. Instead, the author suggests buying several stems of one type of flower, like the mini roses shown on page 75, and bunching them together in a small vase for a sweet and chic look.

Baking Sugar Cookies — Schuman likes to divide the baking process into stages, since making the dough, baking the cookies and decorating them in one day is perhaps biting off more than you can chew. After she makes the dough, she wraps it in wax paper and puts it in the refrigerator until she has time to roll out the dough and bake it.

At Home — To make your bookshelves look more interesting, think beyond books, the author says. Display small pieces of art, framed photos, colorful vases and collectibles on the shelves as well.

Collectibles — Schuman says the best way to start a collection is to think about things you love—such as music, art, gardening, sports, films—and group together items that represent the category in an interesting manner.

by Meryl Schoenbaum

Photography courtesy of Abrams Books

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