Receive more hosting, decorating, and style tips straight to your inbox!
Filed In: styling
The whole east coast seems to be living in a snow globe. It’s snowy and FREEZING. You’ll never guess what but Friday morning I woke up and thought to myself, hmm it seems pretty chilly. I walked into the living room and checked our Nest only to realize the heat wasn’t working and it was currently 55 degrees indoors and quickly dropping!
Yes… our heater’s motor broke in the middle of winter. Obviously the most inopportune time ever. Long story short I had to run around all day Friday to get the new motor for the repairman and we went 24 hours without heat. Thank god my parents live next door or else I think I would have froze to death!
How are you surviving the cold?
Photography by Wanda of MadCris Images
Ladies, let me introduce you to the jumpsuit of your dreams! This little black number is by a Philly based company called Denara. It is the most comfy, flattering and chic piece you’ll find in you closet. The stretchy material is super flattering, hugging your curves (or giving you them if you don’t naturally have them). It’s perfect for holiday parties or date nights.
I loved working with Denara as their work with you to ensure the fit is perfect. Even on their About page they talk about how if your measurements aren’t compatible with their size chart they will work with you to customize a piece. This was perfect for me as I’m only 5’1 with a narrower waist but wider hips. Between the customizations and the top quality fabric I felt like I was a celebrity designing a piece of couture with a top fashion house. You have to check them out
I’m full on in holiday mode. My schedule is packed with multiple parties a week, I only have one present left to buy and I’m feeling holly and jolly! This outfit is certainly helping, have you ever seen something so festive in fun. Its perfect for a party… or just meandering through a Christmas tree farm. 😉 Anyways, today I thought I’d share my December bucket list, things I hope to see and do over the Christmas season:
- Pick and chop down a real tree- growing up I had a fake tree but over the the past couple of years Will and I have been going to Varner Farms and picking out a real Christmas tree. I take pride in picking the perfect one. Are you a real or fake tree type of home?
- Listen to The Glorious Sound of Christmas by the Philadelphia Orchestra- this has become a new tradition and favorite thanks to Will’s mom and I can’t wait to attend again this year!
- Watch my favorite Christmas movies- my favorites include It’s a Wonderful Life, The Holiday and Elf. Each season I can’t wait to put on my jammies and pour a cup of hot cocoa.
- Host a Christmas party- I’m brining my annual Christmas party back this year after a 2 year hiatus, it actually is this Saturday and I’m so excited to get festive with my friends!
- Visit Longwood Gardens- I live 5 minutes away from Longwood Gardens so there is no excuse not to visit every year for Christmas. If you can make it I highly suggest a visit, it truly is the most beautiful Christmas display of flowers, lights, plants and more.
- Make cookies- I’m not a big baker (or cook) but I love making my Aunt Brenda’s “Monster Cookies” recipe each season. It’s so indulgent but a must!
- Give back- this year I’m determined to give back in some way, either by sponsoring a child to buy Christmas gifts for or donating bones and blankets to a local animal shelter. I also plan to make a little cheer box for my mailman, UPS and FedEx men.
- Celebrate my parent’s 30th wedding anniversary. My parents got married on Christmas eve so December 24th every year we have my dad’s side of the family over to celebrate Christmas and their anniversary.
- Go and watch The Nutcracker- I’m sharing more of this on Monday but The Nutcracker by the Pennsylvania Ballet was a tradition from going up I loved and I’m already looking forward to it this season.
- Christmas Jammies- when I was little my Mom-mom would always get my cousins and I a new pair of PJs on Christmas eve to wear that night. Its something I look forward to and the reason why I love matching pajama sets.
What are some of your traditions or things on your holiday bucket list?
One of my favorite Forrest Gump quotes is, “My mama always said you can tell a lot about a person by their shoes, where they going, where they been.” And if these shoes could you about someone they would say, she’s classic and aimless with a touch of prep and secretly comfortable because let me tell you… these smoking slippers are the comfiest pair I own. That’s saying something too because I have arthritis in my feet and toes.
Let me introduce you to the brand Hubbell Hille, the 3 founders are making it their mission to design comfortable and stylish shoes (and all while holding other full time jobs, can you say #bossbabes). Right now they have two styles of this slipper and 4 different colors. I went for the Hubbler 2.0 in coral which is almost like a Nantucket red.
Don’t just take my word on how comfy these shoes are though, try them out for yourself. If you use code “PM20” you can get 20% off. Let’s be twins, k?
You might recall from my InstaStories the beautiful package I was sent from Ellelauri last week. I’m a sucker for good presentation and this one did not disappoint but it’s what’s inside that was the real showstopper. The Ellelauri team picked out the Hartley dress just for me and I’d say they got my style down. It comes in classic navy and with a preppy collar detail!
If you’re not familiar with Ellelauri let me introduce you. This adorable women’s brand was co-founded by local entrepreneur Liz Rymar. Their designs have been worn by the Kardashians and Jessica Alba. You can shop their online store here or if you’re in the Philly area find them in Rittenhouse, Avalon and Chestnut Hill (seasonally).
Isn’t Instagram a beautiful thing? You can connect with the coolest people and discover the best new brands. That’s how I stumbled upon Dress for Cocktails and her line, The Cocktail Clutch. Her clutches are my latest and greatest obsession. Let me explain why…
To start you pick your clutch color/pattern, which there are plenty of choices from solids to stripes, even zebra. Then you pick your bows, which once again comes in various colors and patterns. The bows easily pop on and off of the clutch so you can change your look at any time. I’m always hesitant of products that transition, reverse or change as for some reason it lessens the quality and it never works quite how they say it will.
Let me tell you, this one is perfection. The bows have a magnetic clasp with clips on along the edge so the bows stay put and sturdy but can easily switch out. It’s flawless. Even the tags and branding are adorable with a little cocktail charm on the bag’s chain and a mirror inside the clutch. Plus, (as if it could get any better) the clutches are made in the USA.
Now I just can’t wait to see what her holiday collection will be!
Last winter during the PHL Pop Up Shops I was introduced to Virginia Dare Dress Co. At that point the brand was still in it’s fundraising phases but the designs and messaging total stuck with me. All these months lady while scrolling through Instagram I saw the Camilla dress and had to have it. The toile-like print is totally classic and the shape is very flattering.
The designer and founder, Rebekah originally worked as a photographer and her search for a beautiful yet comfortable dress drove her to creating Virginia Dare Dress Co. Mostly all of the dresses are machine washable and my favorite part is they come in petite, regular and tall. For someone 5’1″ this is major. I constantly have to get my clothes altered as dresses tend to have a hem way to long for my petite legs and I’m always having to get the straps pulled up as well for my short torso.
I was so happy when I tried on this dress and I didn’t need to change a thing! If you’re short, tall or in between… I suggest you give their dresses a try for yourself to see.
I’ve never been a huge makeup girl. While I can kind of do my hair, makeup is something I just have no talent in. Or maybe it’s patience for? However, even though I may only put on eyeshadow once a month, there are a few staples I swear by when it comes to my beauty routine.
1- Make Up For Ever Ultra HD Stick Foundation– A local makeup artist, B Wilson actually turned me onto this product. Previously I had never even used a MUFE product. This however is a game changer. It’s fool proof, gives flawless coverage while making your skin glow but without the shine.
2- Laura Mercier Loose Setting Powder– My skin leans towards the dry side and often times powders can make my skin look more dry and highlight the dead skin. This powder is super lightweight that it doesn’t cake on.
3- Benefit ka-BROW– I’ve been blessed with full brows but cursed with uneven ones. This brow gel is easy to apply, giving you all the control you need and it doesn’t rub off throughout the day like some others I’ve used in the past.
4- Kevin Aucoin Matte Lip Color– I love a gold lip color, the bolder the better! However, I hate the feeling of wearing lipstick, it feels sticky and unnatural. This product I was introduced to by Houppette Beauty and feels like I’m wearing nothing on my lip but gives a vibrant color.
5- Daisy Dream by Marc Jacobs– Ever since a teenager I have loved perfume. I think it all started with the Britney Spears’ Fantasy scent (embarrassing). I’d like to think my sense of smell has evolved since then as now my signature is Daisy Dream.
What are your favorites when it comes to beauty?
Is it just me or is this the longest winter ever? And it’s only February! Luckily, when I was at AtlantaMart a few weeks ago I got a dose of spring with the a sneak peek of my favorite brand’s upcoming warm weather collections. Like this, from Duffield Lane.
When I stopped in the Duffield Lane booth and starting browsing through the resort and spring pieces I stopped when I came to this adorable dress. I mean scallops? Sold. Now just imagine I had a tan too and wasn’t pasty white. Trust me, you too will wear it all spring long.
Every year I can’t wait to put up my Christmas decorations. It takes everything in my to not put them up before Thanksgiving. I usually wait until the weekend right after Thanksgiving to put them up, and that’s just about as long as I can wait. However, as quickly as they go up, they go down as well.
By NYE I had my Christmas decorations down but couldn’t part with taking the wreath off my door. I consider it more of a winter pieces than Christmas, ya know? Another thing that I don’t retire post Christmas? Plaid. It’s in heavy rotation all winter long. A cold weather wardrobe staple. I love mixing plaids with leather and bling (just like I did here) to keep from looking like a Scottish kilt or Christmas dinner tablecloth.