Roman mosaics in Sicily

During my recent stay in Sicily, Italy, I visited a Roman villa called Villa Romana Del Casale. It was a sumptuous villa from the roman period. The owners lived in luxury: the villa had its own private thermae, several reception halls and (common) restrooms as large as a living room. Today, only the bottom part of the walls and the floor mosaics remain.

Even service rooms were decorated, with geometric patterned mosaics. I like this geometrical mosaic that looks like a carpet.

Roman geometric patterned mosaic. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

(Click on the pictures to enlarge them)

In the reception halls and bedrooms, mosaics show mythological scenes and also daily life scenes: hunting, fishing, sport, children’s games, animals…

Here for example, like in Ben-Hur chariot race sequence, children race in chariots but those are pulled by… birds.

Roman mosaic showing children racing in chariots pulled by birds. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

In another room, this mosaic combines geometrical patterns and medallions featuring fruits.

Roman mosaic combining geometrical patterns and medallions featuring fruits. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

The mosaic artists managed to show details in a very realistic way, such as those figs that make me hungry.

Roman mosaic with geometrical patterns and a medallion featuring figs. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

By the way, what I prefered were the small details of the mosaics. Here some plants that could be part of a decoration catalogue.

Roman mosaic showing potted plants. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

There some fishes.

Roman mosaic showing two fishes. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

And finally a bird. Thanks to the enlargement, you can see more closely the assembly of small colored stone pieces.

Roman mosaic showing a bird. Villa Romana Del Casale in Sicily

For more information, see Villa Romana Del Casale website

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January 2015 favorites

My January 2015 favorites:

* The Journey Of a Couture Dress

(a 4 minutes video)

* My new banner

This is a change so that my header suits my blog today. But if you look at them, you will notice that the new banner follow on from the previous one.

ApollineR banner

the old banner

ApollineR banner

the new banner

* A white dress with grey braid at Chanel 2014 Fall Couture Fashion Show

* Drawings by illustrators in tribute to Charlie Hebdo victims in Paris

* My resolutions for 2015

* A window of a Sicilian palace

A baroque window of Palazzo Biscari in Sicily

A window of Palazzo Biscari

I spotted this window of a baroque palace in Catania, Sicily where I spent a few days. I love the exuberance of this window with columns, child faces, garlands and chubby babies figures known as putti.

* How the Password You Select Can Help You Achieve Your Goals

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White dress with grey braid at Chanel 2014 Fall Couture Fashion Show

The white jacket with black braid is a Chanel signature. There have been many variations of this cardigan-jacket. This year, the idea has been used for a white short sleeve trapeze dress at Chanel 2014-2015 Fall-Winter Couture Fashion Show. There is a grey vertical line in the middle of the dress. Other horizontal lines emphasize the high waist, borders and pockets. The result is a geometric and minimalist dress that I would gladly wear.

drawing of a white dress with grey braid from Chanel Couture 2014-2015 Fall-Winter collection

You can see all the pictures of this Fashion Show on Style website.

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December 2014 favorites

drawing of a little girl with a broken pencil and a dove

After a sad week marked by attacks in France and in Nigeria, I have on my mind Norway Prime Minister’s speech after 2011 attacks. He said that the answer to violence is even more democracy and even more humanity. Today that’s all I hope for.

I get back to my blog with my December 2014 favorites, those articles that I share because they inspire me, they make me think or they make me smile:

* A red cape coat at Armani Privé 2014 Fall Couture Fashion Show

* #SlowStreetStyle Lookbook A/W 2014/15

#SlowStreetStyle Lookbook Autumn/Winter 2014-2015 cover

I already mentioned this project in my October favorites. I am very honored to have been chosen to illustrate the cover of the #SlowStreetStyle Lookbook by Consciously Sartorial and So Good So Cute.

* Le Pantruche restaurant in Paris

* #thisgirlcan campaign videos by Sport England that want to encourage girls to get physically active and overcome fear of judgement

The videos show ordinary women playing sport. They have inhibitions, are slow, sweat or lack time but still they have fun! Very inspiring if exercising is one of your New Year’s resolutions.

* A Closet Detox Cheat Sheet

* A guide to make healthy changes

* What is the “true value” of fashion?

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Best Wishes and resolutions for 2015

Best Wishes card illustrated with picture of Valletta, Malta by night

Valletta by night

Last year in my New Year article I shared my 2014 resolutions and theme. One year later, it’s time for a short review.

Respect, the theme I chose for 2014, was very enlightening. Just by asking myself : are my decisions consistent with my theme? I looked at things from a different perspective.

Regarding resolutions, I kept some of them but I abandoned some others (such as exercising and less procrastinating ahem). I think that it’s difficult to focus on several goals at the same time.

Therefore this year I make it simple: I set myself one objective which is also my theme. This year’s theme is action. In other words, I declare war on procrastination ;)

So I wish you a Happy New Year full of exciting projects and realisations :)

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A red cape coat at Armani Privé 2014 Fall Couture Fashion Show

I spotted this outfit at Armani Privé 2014-2015 Fall-Winter Couture Fashion Show. It reminds me of the Little Red Riding Hood because of the cape coat. But a modern Red Riding Hood who wears formal shorts, court shoes, short gloves and a businesswoman bag.

Drawing of a red cape coat from Armani Privé Couture 2014-2015 Fall-Winter collection

You can see all the pictures of this Fashion Show on Style website.

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Le Pantruche restaurant in Paris

Le Pantruche is a gourmet “bistro” (a bistro is an old-style Parisian café) in Paris. I had lunch there last Summer and it was very good.

Smoked fish and avocado starter

Smoked fish and avocado starter

Franck Baranger, le Pantruche chef favours products that are in season and from Paris Region. Here are the pros and cons of the restaurant in my opinion:

Watercress soup with croutons

Watercress soup with croutons

+ The most important: the meal was delicious, the dishes were original tasty
+ The pleasant café atmosphere
+ At the end of the meal, I was sated without feeling heavy
+ The restaurant service was very good.
+ The food was fresh and traceable. The waiter was able to tell us exactly where the products came from.

Saithe with artichoke mousse

Saithe with artichoke mousse

– The tables are very close. But at the same time it contributes to the convivial atmosphere.
– The restaurant is only open weekdays

Grand Marnier Soufflé with caramel

Grand Marnier Soufflé with caramel

We spent 28€ per person for a starter, a main dish and a dessert. It’s more expensive than a café but cheaper than a gourmet restaurant. My advice: the lunch fixed-price menu is more economical than à la carte dishes. Our waiter translated the menu for English-speaking clients but a dictionary could be useful if you don’t speak French. Also I would advise to book as the restaurant is quite popular.

Roasted figs, gingerbread crumble, almond ice cream

Roasted figs, gingerbread crumble, almond ice cream

My opinion:
I enjoyed the gourmet cuisine, the bistro atmosphere and the fresh products. I would be happy to go back to Le Pantruche if I have the chance.

The address :
Le Pantruche
3, rue Victor Massé
75009 Paris
+33 1 48 78 55 60

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November 2014 favorites

My November 2014 favorites :

* Simplify the Holidays

a must read for a more zen Christmas season (in pdf format)

* Livia Firth wearing a blue cape-dress by Stella McCartney at the German Sustainability Awards

Livia Firth en robe-cape bleue signée Stella McCartney aux Prix  Allemands du Développement Durable

Photo Hans-Juergen Bauer for RP Online

*My favorites ethical shops in Paris in my guest post on Consciously Sartorial

* A picture of sea

A view of sea with a sailing boat in Malta

* A Winter look in black and white

* A Minimalist Gift Guide

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Slow Streetstyle look in black and white

In my October favorites, I wrote about the #SlowStreetStyle Challenge initiated by Consciously Sartorial and So Good So Cute blogs. To take up this challenge, you have to create a complete look using ethical clothes. So here is a black and white look I have imagined with the Winter clothes I have spotted.

drawing of a woman wearing a shaded white to grey jumper, black trousers and white sneakers

Slow streetstyle look: shaded white to grey jumper, black handbag, black trousers and white sneakers

(1) Misericordia jumper in alpaga, shaded white to grey. Ethically made in Peru.

(2) Pampa & Pop leather handbag. Ethically made in Argentina. Tannery wastewater is recycled.

I have recently discovered Pampa & Pop colorful bags. This black handbag is more plain but it still has a fancy printed lining.

(3) Ekyog black trousers. 98% organic cotton, 2% elastane. Ethically made in Madagascar.

(4) Veja white sneakers in eco-tanned leather. Ethically made in Brazil.

In real life I would take Veja black sneakers but here I have chosen the white ones as nobody will step on my drawing’s feet ^^

You can create a look and join the #SlowStreetStyle Challenge until November 30th. Everything is explained on Consciously Sartorial blog.

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October 2014 favorites

My October 2014 favorites :

* Charlotte Aleman’s flower street posters

Photographer Charlotte Aleman has hung her street posters inspired by botanical illustration on the streets of Strasbourg, France. I wish I could see her flower posters on my way because I find that they bring serenity to the city.

Flower street poster. Photo by Charlotte Aleman

Photo (c) Charlotte Aleman

* The girl with blue leopard print trousers

* Fairphone, the first ethical smartphone


photo Fairphone (under Creative Commons license)

It costs 300€, is manufactured using conflict-free minerals and is meant to be repaired. Fairphone manufacturers are required to ensure worker representation, safe working conditions and fair pay.

* Anaïs and her heavy wheelbarrow

* Looking back on Fashion Revolution Day

* Everyone has a calling. Follow your (own) passion by Chris Guillebeau

* The #SlowStreetStyle Challenge organised by Consciously Sartorial and SoGoodSoCute

You can join this Fashion Challenge until November 30th by creating a look from ethical and sustainable fashion brands.

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