L'Wren Scott: Holiday Classics

The Muse-Turned-Designer Talks New Creations and Old Traditions, From Claridges to the Caribbean

Descending on a favored cocktail spot, The Fumoir bar in London's Claridges Hotel, L’Wren Scott looks suitably glam adorned in a richly colored mix of satin and brocade. “It’s such a cozy, intimate place,” the designer explains of the venue, where she was launching her new design collaboration with German eyewear brand Menrad. “Great for an after-party chat.” Standing six-foot-three in her bare feet, the raven-haired beauty stuck out in her home state of Utah­, but upon moving to Paris in 1985 she quickly captivated the fashion world with her 42-inch legs. A long-standing collaboration with fabled photographer Herb Ritts followed in the 1990s as she moved towards Hollywood, consulting on movies like Eyes Wide Shut and Diabolique as well as styling the Oscars. Scott met her current love Mick Jagger in 2001 and five years later launched her first collection, aimed at women looking for a classic womanly silhouette. Eyewear represents Scott's newest creative frontier. “Much like doing a dress when you have to think about body proportions,” she says, “with eyewear you have to think about everyone’s face shape. A great lover of the British capital's sumptuous holiday destinations, Scott talked seasonal traditions as photographer Liz Collins snapped her portrait.

What’s your favorite place to spend the holidays?
At home on the island of Mustique.

Do you have any holiday rituals?
Yes! No cell phone on, read as many books as possible and fatten up.

What’s your favorite seasonal food indulgence?
The island doesn’t have a lot of options but I do love a bit of caviar.

Cook or cater?

Candlelight or limelight?
Candles please.

What’s at the top of your wish list this year?
Just having a holiday! I have been so busy working and I’m so excited to have some time off.

Return or re-gift?

What’s the best gift you’ve ever been given?
A song written for me and played on the beach.

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    Seasonal Sips

    Mixologist Nicolas O’Connor Prescribes a Full Course of Medicinals for the Holidays

    Photographer Qiu Yang's pop-tastic still lifes illustrate leading mixologist Nicolas O'Connor’s ultimate day of seasonal drinking. From a refreshing mimosa at first light to that essential pre-bed Alka-Seltzer, the head barman at Manhattan’s opium den-turned-cocktail bar Apothéke knows the right blend for winter cheer. The pharmacy-themed saloon has won praise for its 250-strong cocktail list with specialty ingredients including rose water, cayenne pepper and herbal elixir, all served amid the cool décor of an imported marble bar and gold leaf ceiling. O’Connor justifies his festive concoctions for a day of merry-making you’ll love (but probably won’t remember). 

    Lavender and Blood Orange Mimosa 
    You get a certain strength from the champagne and the orange juice so I wanted to put something delicate in there, certainly if you’re having it in the morning. That’s where the lavender came in to play, and agave is used to sweeten it up. 

    Eggnog from scratch 
    I always struggle with the texture of eggnog so this is a lighter alternative that highlights the rum. I’ve already made it for three holiday parties and even did it at Thanksgiving. It’s good to drink with meals––something heavy like poultry. 

    Mulled wine
    The perfect drink to have while you’re opening presents. I’ve made tons of versions over the years and I never really make it the same, even if I’m trying. It’s better five hours after making it, rather than one. You don’t need good wine either. 

    Taro Alexander
    A new take on the Brandy Alexander. I fell in love with taro—a Chinese root vegetable that has a really milky, creamy taste. This drink is similar to eggnog but heavier because of the brandy. It’s more of a dessert cocktail for after the meal, perfect to wind down with.

    Hot Toddy
    The most welcoming drink that will warm you up and bring you in from the cold. You can feel it going all the way down.

    Fire-Side Negroni
    I’ve always wanted to come up with my own version because a Negroni is one of my favorite drinks. I’ve added Lapsang Souchong tea here, which you can infuse in the gin for 45 minutes. It’s a wild card really as I can drink this before dinner, at dinner or after dinner! 

    What I actually do for my stomach woes instead of alka-seltzer is I mix angostura bitters and seltzer water. It's great for settling the stomach, plus you get a little hair of the dog with the bitters, very old-timey but also effective.  Like 15 drops of bitters into a full glass if seltzer or club soda.

    Serve up these delicious drinks at your next party. Visit our Facebook page for the recipes.

    (Read More)

    Return of the Sun

    Filmmakers Glen Milner and Ben Hilton Witness Greenland's First Dawn of the Year

    Set against the expansively beautiful and iridescent landscape of Northern Greenland, Glen Milner and Ben Hilton's subtle and touching short visits the annual sun-welcoming ritual of the country’s Inuit population, which celebrates the dawn after more than 40 days of complete winter darkness. Following the daily routine of an Inuit ice fisherman and his son, Return of the Sun examines the affects of the changing climate on their livelihood and community, and pays tribute to the locals’ innate adaptability. “While we were there our fisherman lost hundreds of pounds of fish due to ice breaking away and lines being lost, rare for this time of year,” explains Milner. “The fishermen were already thinking of new ways to hunt and the Inuit attitude in such a harsh environment proved inspiring.” Although the pair had previously worked together on diverse projects including Rwandan genocide prisoners and a short on experimental rock band Rolo Tomassi, filming in Greenland’s harsh environment offered unique new challenges. “Filming in such low temperatures with high winds is grueling. Keeping the camera out of the battering snow, keeping it warm and getting sound away from the winds was really tough, and it's so dark,” says Hilton. “But emotionally, you see nature at its most inspiring and its most intense.”  


    Ilulissat, Greenland. 

    Longitude and Latitude
    69° 13 min N; 51° 6 min W.

    Average daily temperature

    Average daily wind speed
    5.6–11 km/h (Force 2, Beaufort Scale).

    Affect of changing climate
    Ice depleting by up to 15 meters (49 feet) per year in Ilulissat, meaning 20 billion tons of iceberg break off and pass out of the Ilulissat fjord annually.

    Hours of darkness per day while filming 

    Days of total darkness per year 

    Average sunlight per year 
    On balance, 1,878 sunshine hours––approximately 5.1 sunlight hours per day.

    Traditional first annual sunrise
    January 13 (13 minutes before 13:00).

    Sunrise in 2011
    January 11.

    Number of inhabitants 

    1 x 4x4, 6 x planes, 1 x small fishing boat, dog sleds.

    Number of dogs per sled 

    Sony F3 with Zeiss ZF lenses.

    Length of shoot 
    Two days traveling to location, six days filming, two days traveling back.

    Clothes worn while filming 
    North Face everything.

    Average number of layers of clothing 

    Skin care 
    Arctic skincare packs and lots of ChapStick.

    Food during filming
    Equal mix of fine dining and Pot Noodle.

    Safety equipment 
    Not enough.

    (Read More)

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