Conscious by Chloé

Chloé Lepeltier - Conscious By Chloé

Bonjour & Welcome! Conscious by Chloé is a Sustainable Lifestyle Blog focusing on Zero Waste, Slow Living, and Ethical Fashion coming to you from Portland, OR.

The Conscious List

Drive-in Cinema by DesignClass for Conscious by Chloé

Picture by DesignClass

Happy Friday! What are you up to this (long) weekend? Octave & I are on our way to visit a house for rent in Central Oregon today (we packed lunches, snacks and our masks so as to minimize our contacts). Fingers crossed!

Here are a couple links to things that have caught my attention or kept me busy this week:

Note: If you buy something through my links, I may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. I recommend only products I genuinely like. Thank you so much for supporting my work.


Who else can't wait to host dinner parties?


Make Your Own - Oat Milk Latte

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Over the past couple years, Octave has gotten really into coffee and it has made my gift giving really easy.

It all started with a Home Barista Class, which was followed by a Milk Steaming and Latte Art Class and ended with a Home Coffee Roasting workshop. The next step would be moving to a warmer climate and starting our own coffee plantation but I don't see this happening... ever!

Did I mention I don't drink coffee?

With new skills comes new material. Octave, like me, is a crazy researcher and came up with the following setup.

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Equipment

Find the whole list here.

As for ingredients, find what works for you, according to your diet and location.

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Ingredients

  • Coffee
    Octave roast his own coffee from local Mr. Green Beans' but he also recommends the one from our neighborhood coffee shop and roaster: Carnelian Coffee.
  • Oat milk
    He tried to reverse engineer Oatly with amylase but without success. The Minimalist Baker has a great oil-free alternative.

And now, here's how Octave makes the best oat latte (according to himself and our closest friends).

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Brew the Espresso

(following instructions by Flair)

  • Heat up the steamer.
  • Weight 14 g of coffee beans.
  • Grind the beans with a burr grinder or a blade grinder dialed to the appropriate settings.
  • Affix the funnel to the portafilter and fill it with grounds, tamp lightly.
  • Remove the funnel and place the portafilter on the post and add the screen.
  • Preheat the cylinder by inverting it and placing it in a bowl filled with boiling water for 30 seconds or do like Octave and place it straight into the kettle until the water boils.
  • Pour some boiling water in a coffee cup to warm it up.
  • Retrieve the cylinder and add it to the portafilter (a pair of tongs could be useful).
  • Add brew water (198-208 ̊F, 92-97 ̊C) to the cylinder and fill it to the line.
  • Add the piston and the gauge to the top of the cylinder.
  • Lower the lever to brew. It should take between 35 to 45 seconds at 30 to 40 pounds force. If this is not the case, adjust your grind and dose.

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Froth the Milk

(following instructions byJ.L.Hufford)

  • Fill your frothing pitcher just below the pour spout with cold milk.
  • Place the steam wand just below the surface of the milk.
  • Open the steam valve to full blast and begin frothing. During the frothing process, you need to keep the tip just below the surface of the milk so that you occasionally hear a ripping, sucking sound. You will need to have the tip off-center and at an angle to swirl the milk. Your milk will then create a vortex that incorporates larger air bubbles into the milk until a velvety smooth microfoam is achieved.
  • As you incorporate more air into the milk, you will notice its volume increase. Take note of the type of bubbles you see; if they are big and stay big, move the wand tip a little lower into the milk. Remember to keep that vortex whirling around as you go. Continue to stretch the milk until the sides of the pitcher start to get warm.
  • Lower the steam wand and emulsify. At this point, you can lower the wand tip below the surface of your milk. Make sure the angle and position of the wand stay the same to keep the milk rolling in a vortex. Heat the milk all the way up until the pitcher starts to become uncomfortable to touch but not scalding hot.
  • Close the steam valve and wipe down your steam wand with a damp cloth. Purge the wand one last time to ensure all milk residue is purged.
  • If you notice any larger bubbles in your milk, give it a tap on the countertop and swirl the milk around.

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

Pour & Create Latte Art

(following instructions by Sophia Smith)

  • Latte art is easiest in a rounded bowl-shaped cup.
  • Pour your espresso into the bottom of the cup and then add a small amount of your steamed milk and swirl to incorporate it. The main aspects of the pouring technique are speed and height above the bowl. Pour slowly and evenly at a fairly high distance. This allows the milk and espresso to continue incorporating. You can pour in a circular motion to ensure it mixes well.
  • As you reach the second half of the cup, bring the pitcher closer to the surface. This layer will not incorporate, creating a distinction between the white foam and the body of the latte.
  • Starting on the side farthest from you, pour the foam into the cup and draw the pitcher towards you, creating a white circle.
  • Once you reach the other side of the cup, quickly drag the pitcher back across the cup, “cutting” the circle into a heart. A leaf can be made in the same way, except that instead of creating a circle, you move the pitcher in a zig-zag motion before “cutting” it with the stem of the leaf.

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer

There you go. It's a lot of work, but it seems to be giving him so much joy! With physical distancing, he's been longing to make coffee for friends and neighbors and we considered opening a home coffee shop named "Coffee on the Floor" where people show up, put their cup on the floor in front of our house, back up, then Octave pours them a latte, back up and voilà! (we might have done that a couple times already). Our friend Sarah suggested we name it "Café par terre" because French always sounds better - we didn't say it, she did :)

Note: He also makes the best chai, matcha and turmeric lattes...

Make the Best Oat Milk Latte with a Flair Espresso Maker and a Stovetop Steamer


So, should Octave open a coffee shop?


Make Your Own - Zine

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

Yesterday, I was on my library's website minding my own business and downloading yet another e-book that I would not be able to read (I cannot focus, really) when I noticed in a corner of the homepage that the Multnomah County Library was hosting a virtual event with Malaka Gharib, the author of the graphic memoir I Was Their American Dream.

The title of the event was Make a Self-Care Zine with Malaka Gharib.

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

I discovered zines on the late, at the Alien She exhibition at the OCMA, back in 2015 and have since then fantasized on writing my own.

For those of you who are not familiar with the concept, a zine is usually a homemade, self-published/self-photocopied, DIY-ed "magazine" that is typically produced in small batches.

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

I'm not a drawer. I actually feel very vulnerable showing you these - I mean, look at what Malaka made! - but what I mean to say is: If I managed to do it, anyone can!

Malaka gave us prompts and we had between 1 and 3 minutes to create each page. I obviously focused on text - did I mention I'm not a drawer? - but eventually got inspired as she showed us her work in real time.

Now I want to make more, experiment with placement, focus on images rather than text and get creative with flourishes.

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

I am not the most regular journaler, but I really think that I'd be happy to look back on a little time capsule from this "far from ordinary" period we're going through.

Malaka's workshop was focused on self care but there are so many subjects you could write about!

I want to remember our daily routine, the shows we watched, the games we played, the music we listened to, the food we cooked, the people we connected with, how we connected with them (Zoom, anyone?).

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

So here you go, grab a piece of paper, or even better, a piece of junk mail that has only been printed on one side (as you will end up writing only on one side of your sheet of paper) and start folding!

How to make your own zine from a single piece of paper

Check out this tutorial.

You can also make a little homemade notebook if you feel crafty.

Prompts to write your pandemic self care zine

  • What does a bad day during the pandemic feel like?
  • How do you pull yourself out of that feeling?
  • Who do you reach out to when you need to connect?
  • Describe your best day during the pandemic
  • How do you care for people you love during the pandemic?
  • What do you do to forget your surroundings during the pandemic?
  • What have you been holding on to get through this?

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

Portland peeps: For zine inspiration, check out the IPRC for making them, and Palace for browsing and buying the best zine selection ever!

Pandemic Self Care Zine Making with Malaka Gharib by Conscious by Chloé

Note: If you buy something through my links, I may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. I recommend only products I genuinely like. Thank you so much for supporting my work.


Have you ever published a zine/ Would you publish a zine? What was it/would it be about?


Capsule Wardrobe - Cropped Jeans

Nisolo Reina High Top Sneakers Bone & Babba Cardigan 19 Mist by Conscious by Chloé

After a week of summer weather we are back to cold(er) rainy days and I'm not too mad about it because we don't have A/C and I am not ready to sweat all day.

Nisolo Reina High Top Sneakers Bone & Babba Cardigan 19 Mist by Conscious by Chloé

I stored my winter sweaters a little too soon but luckily they're still within reach in a box under my bed.

If you follow me on Instagram, you might have seen how I've taken in the waist of these jeans I got second hand on Vinted while I was in France. The alteration is super easy, all you need is a pair of scissors, some elastic band, thread and a needle.

I ended up threading the elastic around most of the waistband (rather than only in the back as it is shown in most tutorials - see Method 3 here) and I'm really happy about the result.

Now I can properly tuck my tops into my jeans!

Nisolo Reina High Top Sneakers Bone & Babba Cardigan 19 Mist by Conscious by Chloé

Outfit Details:

Cardigan (OS) - Babaa
Tee (M) - Everlane (similar)
Pants - Zara, shopped second hand on Vinted (similar)
Sneakers (7 1/2) c/o Nisolo (get 15% off with promo code "NOT ALONE")

Everlane is currently having a Choose What You Pay sale!

Note: If you buy something through my links, I may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. I recommend only products I genuinely like. Thank you so much for supporting my work.

Nisolo Reina High Top Sneakers Bone & Babba Cardigan 19 Mist by Conscious by Chloé


Am I too old for cropped jeans?


The Conscious List

Barefoot in the Grass by Annie Spratt for Conscious by Chloé

Picture by Annie Spratt

Happy Friday! How are you holding up? I've spent a lot of time taking care of my mind and body this week and am feeling very, very good! And one mindblowing thing might have played a big part in it, keep reading.

Here are a couple links to things that have caught my attention or kept me busy this week:

Note: If you buy something through my links, I may earn an affiliate commission, at no cost to you. I recommend only products I genuinely like. Thank you so much for supporting my work.


When's the last time you walked barefeet in the grass?