8 reasons to shop the farmer’s market

Blanc_Farmers Market

Blanc_Farmers Market

BLANC_FarmersMarket

I’ll admit, I’ve always been a bit of a hippie. I use canvas shopping bags on my trips to the grocery store, I will never waste a veggie or fruit (I freeze them before they go bad for smoothies!) and I not-so-subtley used to post notes above my sorority house’s trash cans saying “Please Recycle”. I’m most likely not saving the world, but hey, it’s a step in the right direction, right? Reduce, reuse, recycle, everyone! 

It’s probably no surprise that I’m an avid farmer’s market shopper. When I first moved to Charleston, the Mount Pleasant farmer’s market was about 50 yards outside my front door. I remember the first Tuesday that it was open: I jumped for joy and told the girls at work that I had to leave right at 5:00 to make it to the market.

I can be such a dork about my veggies.

You’ve heard the saying and seen the hashtag, “Shop Local,” but do you do it? Sure, I personally may not have the budget to shop in the local Charleston boutiques (TJ Maxx is more my haven), but I can shop local for my produce, and it has it’s benefits.

Blanc_FarmersMarket

8 reasons to shop the farmer’s market:

1. It’s budget friendly

Pop Quiz: How much would large carrots, strawberries, and red tomatoes cost at the grocery store? Organic produce would cost you about $15 and if you’re anything like me, you will have to find 30 different ways to cook potatoes so they don’t go bad before you eat them all. Last Tuesday, I bought a bundle of large carrots, local James Island strawberries, and 6 red tomatoes for $7.25. Good enough for me!

2. Farm-to-table freshness

Produce can take weeks to get from the field to the store. Farmer’s market produce comes straight from the field to the selling table allowing it to be bought at it’s peak for flavor and nutrition.

3. Clean eating

How many people have jumped on the clean eating bandwagon? Though most grocery stores now offer an organic section, organic produce comes at a cost. Skip the processing and preservatives.

4. Put those Pinterest recipes to good use

If I’m experimenting with a new recipe, I will ask the farmer’s market stand attendant (sometimes the farmers themselves) what is the best way to store/cook/reheat the specific item. Most of the time they will tell me their favorite food pairings as well!

5. Never over-buy

Living on my own does not always mean I’m able to shop for one. For example, it is a painful task to try to figure out how to make use of an entire bag of red potatoes. I just don’t eat them that often and yet I seem to need them for a recipe every other week. The farmer’s market allows me to buy the 3 potatoes that I need, instead of the entire bag.

6. Think outside of the produce section

A lot of markets will have food that won’t be in the grocery store – like 10 different kinds of heirloom tomatoes!

7. Find local vendors

Most farmer’s markets have more than just produce. It’s a great place to shop local for honey, bread, pasta, seafood, and even cheese. Supporting your local economy has never tasted so good!

8. The inexpensive date night

Clear skies and the smell of zucchini in the air! Okay, it may not be the most romantic place on Earth, but a lot of farmer’s markets can certainly be creative. My local market has live bands, hot pretzels, and snow cones that I just can’t get enough of! Grab a quick bite and some sunshine while you enjoy the live music.


Find a farmer’s market near you!


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BLANC_Market

 

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color your weekend

Blanc EasterGiveaway

If you’re friends with Kate (Spade, that is), you are familiar with the happy command that has us all under a spell: live colorfully. Well, I’m not sure if you’ve heard, but color is ‘in’ for spring. Ground breaking? Not really, but let me finish –

Since before our time, artists and designers have been using color to evoke emotions. There is always a reason for color. Marketing strategists have designed entire brands based off the psychology of color and how it influences and signals a response from people. So why is it that every spring we are yearning for pops of pink and bright yellows? Maybe it’s because our chic head-to-toe-in-black look can’t be worn in 80 degree weather. Or could it be that we are just itching for brightness after the cool winter months?

Either way, Kate has it right. Adding a splash of something fun can lift your mood and brighten your spirits, whether that splash is in your wardrobe or on your counter tops. In honor of Good Friday and the festive few days coming up, I’m sharing 5 ways to color your weekend – all for under $50.

Get out your pastel shorts, people – it’s spring!

 live colorfully this weekend:

Blanc _ Natalie Taylor ArtInspire Color

One of my favorite things to do on a rainy day is to go to art galleries. For my Charleston friends, starting today, you can join Gallery Row’s First Fridays on Broad, an art walk featuring over 16 galleries, restaurants, and boutiques. Grab a glass of pinot and get inspired!

For my followers not living in the low country – don’t worry – I haven’t forgotten about you. I’ve teamed up with Natalie Taylor Humphrey for an Instagram #LIVECOLORFULLY giveaway. Find me on IG (@blancblog) and follow the instructions for a chance to win Natalie’s gorgeous girl shown above, as well as some gems from Reece Blaire!

Blanc Blog PillowCreate Color

When it comes to DIY, you should never underestimate yourself. Inspired by the talented artist, Maria Kamara, I decided to add a little funk to a boring pillow case. Here’s how you craft it:

1. Start with a durable fabric pillow case (canvas, twill, outdoor fabric)

2. Insert cardboard inside the pillow case so your paint does not bleed through to the other side of your case

3. Mix two parts paint and one part textile medium. Using a textile medium will keep your paint from chipping off or crunching up.

4. Go for it. The more abstract the better!

5. Let your work dry overnight and insert your pillow. How easy was that?

The Color Run in Charlotte, 2012
The Color Run in Charlotte, 2012

Run for Color

The name says it all. The Color Run is said to be the happiest 5k on the planet. Work your butt off and release some endorphins (yes, Elle Woods!) while getting splattered with powder-paint along the way. The most colorful contestant wins in my book. Attention Atlanta girls: they’re coming to you TOMORROW!

Blanc, The Poplin RBWear Color

You know my obsession with Reece Blaire. The girls of sass, wit, and sophistication have done it again with their 2015 spring line. Need I mention that they are a finalist in the Belk Southern Designer Showcase? A favorite of mine, the Poplin earring, is on sale for $30 online, or win it on Instagram (@blancblog) for the Blanc #LIVECOLORFULLY Giveaway. Winner will be announced on Easter!

BlancBlogServe Color

Take the weekend off from salads and quinoa and be a little bad. Tis the season, right? One dozen carrot cake cupcakes coming right up! My favorite recipe is on Pinch of Yum!


Bonus

One lucky follower will get an extra treat from the Easter bunny. Enter the Blanc #LIVECOLORFULLY Giveaway on Instagram to win the Natalie Taylor Humphrey original painting and Poplin earrings from Reece Blaire.