Last Minute Holiday Gift Guide

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Hello, procrastinators! If you’re anything like me, you still have a long journey of holiday shopping ahead of you. Well sorry to scare you, but Christmas is now less than a WEEK away, which means even less shopping days. If you’re still on the hunt for the perfect gift(s), I’m here to help. Below you’ll find two holiday gift guides: one for the lucky ladies in your life and one for the gentlemen — with ideas to please even the most difficult people on your list to shop for. So whether you’re shopping for your sweetheart, BFF, sister, parents, little bro, or aunt’s neighbor’s friend’s dog’s cousin, there’s something here for everyone. Enjoy!

Shopping for Her
Gift Guide

  • Marc Jacobs Beauty Kiss Pop Lip Color Stick –  Don’t be fooled by the name so long it would barely fit in a tweet (Marc, do less with your product names), this little stick is pretty major and makes for a great stocking stuffer.
  • Frends Taylor Headphones – White leather and rose gold? Done. Although a little pricy, these puppies will have your music-loving BFF rocking in style.
  • ban.do “I Am Very Busy” iPhone 6 Case – Perfect for that lady in your life who does it all. Also comes in an art print, agenda, and pencil pouch.
  • Moscow Mule Mugs (2 for $38) – These copper cups are too cute and legitimately make Moscow Mules taste even more delicious. I heard it’s something about the properties of copper. Or something. #science
  • Rewined Candle – Based in my city, Charleston, SC, these candles are made from repurposed wine bottles AND are wine-scented. My faves: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay & Wine Under the Tree. Shopping small & local doesn’t have to be put on pause during the holidays!
  • Essie Nail Polish – If all else fails, scoop up a couple fun Essie colors. No girl can ever have enough. (Insider tip: check Marshalls and TJ Maxx for discounted bottles!)
  • Ampersand Paper Letter – Step 1: go to a craft store. Step 2: pick up a paper letter. Step 3: spray paint it gold. It will cost you close to nothing, looks like you put a lot of effort into it, and is actually a cool, personal gift to receive. I think an ampersand is fun (and we all know how much everyone LOVES a good ampersand, for reasons unknown), but you could always go with an initial, all three initials, or a whole name if you’re feeling sassy.
  • Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham – Great gift for the funny lady in your life, and it’s on Amazon Prime so it will get to your house, like, faster than a pizza delivery. Other options include: Yes Please by Amy Poehler, Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling, and Bossypants by Tina Fey.
  • Ashley Brooke Designs Jingle Juice Mug – May it be coffee or something a little stronger (read: vodka), your BFF will have the perfect thing to sip it out of.
  • Urban Decay Naked Basics – Less expensive than a full Naked palette, yet still has all the essentials. Scoop up one of these from Sephora for your beauty-loving babes.
  • Candy Shop Vintage Charleston Rice Bead Bracelet – Another gift local to Charleston, and a cute one at that! Charleston Rice Beads pay homage to the history of the port city (read the meaning behind them here), and they come in all different colors which makes for easy shopping.

Shopping for Him
Gift Guide 2

  • Brackish Bow Ties – Another local gift based out of Charleston, these unique feather bow ties make for the perfect present. Oh yeah, and Bill Murray wore one to the Oscars, so there’s that.
  • Paddle Your Own Canoe by Nick Offerman – What dude doesn’t aspire to be Nick Offerman? This book is the ultimate MANual (see what I did there?) and is also on Amazon Prime, so you can procrastinate even more. But please don’t, you’re stressing me out.
  • Shotgun Shell Coasters – These coasters are pretty badass, if you ask me. If your man complains about your girlie Rifle Paper Co. coasters (hi w), give him a pack of these to shut him up. They might be a gift for him, but think how chic they’ll look on your coffee table.
  • Flannel Flask – Ideal for the guy in your life who loves to drink tailgate, not to mention super wintry and festive — which dudes so care about.
  • Swell Water Bottle – Sometimes guys feel lame carrying around a water bottle, so they make it even weirder by lugging around a huge jug that looks like a gallon of milk. Reusing those plastic jugs puts you at risk for icky BPA (#biomajorprobz), and let’s face it, it kinda makes you look like a weirdo.
  • Blind Barber Wild Watermint Gin Aftershave – Men generally don’t buy themselves nice products, so treat your dad, brother, or sweetheart to an upscale product to make them feel all fancy.
  • Wool Pocket Square – To have the men in your life looking and feeling even flossier, hook them up with a pocket square. I picked one with a Jack Russell print because of my little furbaby, but I’m also a big fan of the polka dot one here (SHOCKER).
  • Abington Waxed Messenger Bag – For the guy in your life who just got a brand new job, a nice messenger bag would make the perfect gift. I picked this canvas and leather one because it reminds me of Jim from The Office it’s a nice combination of casual and fancy.
  • Fair Isle Socks – When you run out of ideas, socks never fail. I feel like men are constantly getting mysterious holes in their socks and could always use a few new pairs.
  • Nut & Bolt Cuff Links – If you’re dragging your man to something that requires cuff links, give him these rustic little babies as a discreet way to feel casual.
  • Leather Wrapped Cocktail Shaker – P classy. Also another gift that you can totally steal for yourself. #truemeaningofchristmas

Have you done your Christmas shopping yet? Comment some of your favorite gifts to give below!

(image source: Brit + Co)

S’more Dandy

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Remember my fun Friendsgiving post from the other week? Today I’m back for more with the second lookbook shoot with Dandy Boutique. This campfire-inspired shoot, complete with s’mores, featured some more of Dandy’s cozy, trendy pieces that we all got to style ourselves. Just like the first lookbook shoot, Rutledge Social did all of the coordinating and styling, 428 Main provided the fabulous vintage rentals, and Catherine Ann Photography once again outdid herself with the most beautiful photos. Seriously y’all, I was the last one to shoot my outfit for the second look and we were kind of running out of cool backdrops, so Katie had me stand by a baby evergreen tree next to a 5 foot wide section of fence. Although it didn’t look very impressive in person, Katie’s UNEDITED photos ended up looking like I was at a freaking Christmas tree farm straight out of an LL Bean catalogue. She’s seriously talented, y’all.

For my outfit, I went with a casual meets urban look which I absolutely loved. I was obsessed with this geo print jacket (slash still am) and based my whole look around it. I paired it with a tres chic sweater, ankle zip skinnies, black flats with heart details (!), and oversized cat-eye sunnies. To top it off, I threw on a gold chain and went with purple lips to amp up the “city” vibe of the ensemble. Best part of it all? My mom told me I look like my Granny in these photos :) Take a look below!

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Clothing c/o Dandy Boutique | Photography: Catherine Ann Photography | Vintage Rentals: 428 Main | Styling & Design: Rutledge Social | Makeup: Pink Dot Beauty Bar

What do you think of my look? To check out any of our pieces, head to the Dandy Boutique website now!

Check out the rest of the fabulous bloggers:
Brittany of Southern Meets Chic | Tara of Northern Lights – Southern Belles | Venita of Venita Aspen | Christine of A List Greek | Rebecca of Black Book Darling

What To Wear On Thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving can be one of the toughest holidays to dress for. Depending on your plans, you want to look cute but at the same time be super comfy, and anything even remotely restricting is completely out of the question. My problem is usually going for total comfort (and an elastic waistband, OBVI) but not looking 100% homeless. So whether you’re going to your guy’s house for the first time, having friendsgiving with your pals, or just hanging at home, I’ve got your outfit covered.

Meeting Your Man’s Fam
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When you have to look presentable, but still want to be able to load up on the carbs, dresses are an obvious choice. I love this cowl-neck sweater dress — it’s so unbelievably cozy, lets your food baby breathe (while concealing it!), and looks totally put-together. I paired it with some Frye boots, a leopard print clutch, tortoiseshell studs, a classic watch, and some fally nails. Eat your heart out, future in-laws.

Sweater Dress | Cognac Boots | Leopard Clutch | Tortoiseshell Studs | Leather Watch | Nail Lacquer

Friendsgiving With Pals
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If you’re having Friendsgiving, go for a fun and trendy look. Again, to let your food baby grow and prosper, opt for a dress, like this fun printed shift. Pair with a fur vest and black over-the-knee boots to really amp up the trendiness, then add on some wishbone studs (get it?!), a fun bracelet, and some red lipstick for a pop of color.

Shift Dress | Fur Vest | Over-The-Knee Boots |  Wishbone Studs | Pave Link Bracelet | Red Lipstick

Home For The Holidays
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For those of us who stay home with our families for Thanksgiving, the common issue is usually “what do I wear that feels like PJs, but isn’t PJs?” Finding something that you can lounge around the house in while not looking like a hobo can be a grueling task. I picked out an oversized, off-the-shoulder sweater, some nice and stretchy Lululemon wunder unders, and my all time favorite footwear, LL Bean’s Wicked Good Moccasins. To top it off, throw on a plaid blanket scarf, cozy cable knit socks, a burgundy beanie, and fun little spoon & fork studs. And if you’re hungover from the biggest bar night of the year, you’ll need a bottomless cup of coffee.

Off-The-Shoulder Sweater | Wunder Unders | Blanket Scarf | Pom-Pom Beanie | Cable-Knit Socks | Wicked Good Moccasins | Spoon & Fork Studs | Ampersand Mug

What are your plans for Thanksgiving?

A Very Dandy Friendsgiving

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A couple weeks ago, I had the pleasure of getting together with some of my favorite blogger babes for the sweetest little Thanksgiving shoot you’ve ever seen. The lookbook shoot by Rutledge Social was for one of my favorite local shops, Dandy Boutique, showcasing their adorable clothes and accessories. Dandy Boutique is kind of like a cuter ModCloth, but local — aka better! My blogger BFF Brittany (y’all probably know her as Southern Meets Chic) described the boutique so perfectly that I just had to steal — “Allie Hamilton from The Notebook meets Audrey Hepburn.” She even (very accurately) compared it to shopping in Taylor Swift’s closet. Hello, every girl’s dream! As if it could get better than that, the owner, Holly, is super fun and hilarious which makes shopping at Dandy that much more…dandy. Holly also makes flower crowns available to purchase on her site — and you all know how much I love a good flower crown. How much fun are the autumn-inspired ones we rocked in this shoot?!

We all got to style our own looks (SO much fun!) and Catherine Ann Photography captured the ensembles beautifully. As for that amazing table setup you see, the fabulous 428 Main provided the vintage rentals and we all brought a dish to share — although I had just flown in from New York and only had time to grab a cheese plate. Sorry guys. Anyways, take a peek at the look I styled below! What do you think?

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Love our looks? Check out Dandy Boutique to browse Holly’s sweet shop! Stay tuned for our second looks coming later this week… (Hint: S’mores are involved!)

I hope everyone had a very merry Friendsgiving — we know we did!

Clothing c/o Dandy Boutique | Photography: Catherine Ann Photography | Vintage Rentals: 428 Main | Styling & Design: Rutledge Social | Makeup: Pink Dot Beauty Bar

Romp & Roll

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Oh Charleston, how I love ya. Where else could I wear rompers in November? Probably a lot of places, but this is by far my favorite. I knew this would be one of the last times it would be nice enough to bare my (painfully pale) legs before the permanent fall chill set in, so I romped right into mid-November and never looked back — except in that last picture.

When I find long sleeve rompers, I snatch them up fast. They’re perfect for fall in Charleston, not to mention comfy as PJs, flattering, and very on-trend. This little gem from Teal adds my beloved fall floral trend into the equation, aka I’m in love. Fall in Charleston is pretty fickle — one day it’s 74, the next it’s 48 (no really that just happened today) — so my solution is layering. Lots and lots of layering. So when it came to styling this playful playsuit, I immediately threw a fur vest on top. I wear fur vests with pretty much everything (even when I probably shouldn’t), so this outfit was a no-brainer. For the rest of the look, I chose neutral booties, a black floppy hat, and a GiGi clutch in my favorite jewel tone. As for jewelry, I went with my go-to gold pieces, an emerald bracelet for another pop of jewel tones, and a gold body chain to play into the deep V of the romper. Last but not least, I decided to try out the purple lipstick fad to really give the look an autumn vibe. It might just look like I’m cold, though — please advise. Now it’s time to say farewell to bare legs (read: my razor) and those 80 degree “fall” days, as I’m currently wearing three layers in my living room.

Romper: Teal | Booties: Nordstrom (similar here) | Clutch: GiGi New York from Dulles Designs | Fur Vest: Asos (similar here) | Hat: H&M | Body Chain: Stylexchange | Watch: Forever 21 | Bracelets: J. Crew | Rings: Forever 21 & Stylexchange | Lips: Revlon (Shameless) | Nails: Essie (Merino Cool)

Fake Weddings, Real Job

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I’m SO excited to share some big news with y’all — I have a new job and it’s kind of awesome. The company is called The Big Fake Wedding (formerly The NotWedding — more on the name change shortly) and it’s basically a bridal show alternative in the form of, well, a big fake wedding! The “wedding guests” are brides-to-be who basically get to crash a wedding while getting ideas for their own wedding — kind of awesome, right? Engaged ladies bring their bridesmaids, friends, mom, or even their fiancé (that’s how you know he’s a keeper!) to attend a sweet ceremony, a pretty dope dinner, and a big dance-party reception — all while experiencing their city’s wedding vendors in action. Brides-to-be leave the event with a swag bag in hand, fun little goodies from various vendors, and tons of inspiration for planning their own wedding — I know, don’t you wish you had thought of it?!

I joined the team at a really exciting time, as we are in the process of changing our name and branding. Why the name change? For one, we are ready to stop spelling the name every time we say it! “That’s The NotWedding: The N-O-T Wedding.” We also want to avoid any brand confusion, and we hope to create an identity that is entirely our own. We will continue as The NotWedding until the end of 2014 and then begin operating as The Big Fake Wedding in 2015. Although the name is changing, we are still devoted to our goals of inspiring brides and grooms, supporting small businesses, and encouraging solid marriages.

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As for my role in all this, I began my fabulous journey at the company back in March as an intern, then a couple months later became part-time. A few weeks ago, when my boss called and asked if I’d like to officially join the team, I squealed out a yes with an audible heartbeat and even more audible smile. I’m now working full-time as the Marketing Assistant (to probably the coolest boss EVER), and I couldn’t be more thrilled. Look out for a familiar voice on The Big Fake Wedding Blog, as well as several of our social media outlets. Follow the fun on our Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest!

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So now that you know what I do, come and join me at one of the events near you! I have included our 2015 Event Lineup above, and as you can see, I’m going to be traveling a lot! Did I mention this job is going to be awesome?? If you would like to attend one of these events with me and the ridiculously cool team, please visit our website or email me at chloe@thebigfakewedding.com for more info.

Photo Credit: Gillian Ellis of A Coastal Bride, Kaitie Bryant Photography

Mountain Mama

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As you may know from my excessive, “basic” social media posts of fall in Virginia, I recently made the trek to my hometown at the peak of my favorite season. One of my favorite things to do in Charlottesville during in autumn is venture up to Carter’s Mountain, an apple orchard on a mountain overlooking the whole city. We picked apples for approximately 2 minutes and then got bored and bought a bottle of wine. At least we tried, right? We all know I’m a situational dresser, so I would have felt wrong if I didn’t throw on a flannel for Carter’s Mountain. I went with a red + black buffalo plaid one for a nice rugged vibe, then paired it with my new favorite distressed jeans (ridiculously cheap and flattering — get them now), Frye boots, and a simple brown felt hat. I kept accessories simple (I was at an apple orchard, after all) with classic aviators and a gold watch. Check out a few of my favorite snapshots from the weekend below!

Flannel: Old Navy | Distressed Skinnies: Old Navy | Boots: Frye | Hat: Target | Sunnies: Ray Ban | Watch: Forever 21

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{ wine > apple picking }

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{ my adorable best friends. }

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{ pippin hill vineyard – another cville staple. }

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{ i really, really do. }

Notcho Poncho

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It took a while for me to get on board with ponchos, but now I don’t know how I ever questioned it. Despite the fact that I sort of feel like a Colombian man riding his burro, this is one of my favorite fall wardrobe additions. It was an excellent *MaXxiNisTa* find that’s acceptable enough to leave the house in, but comfy enough to live in — and that’s all I’ve ever wanted. It also doesn’t hurt that it was originally $120 and I got it for a sweet sweet $25. #bargainhunter4lyfe

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When it came to styling this pretty poncho, I kept things fairly simple. Skinny jeans, Frye boots, and a pop of blue with my mirrored sunnies. I accessorized with a fun little tassel necklace (give me all the tassels this fall), some B&B bangles, a blingy bracelet, and simple gold rings. Last but not least, it just wouldn’t be right without a messy topknot. Hello, head honcho poncho.

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If it weren’t for the Peruvian princess pattern, this shoot would kind of scream Coldwater Creek — but I just can’t help how much I love fall (WE KNOW, CHLOE). I was lucky enough to run home to Virginia for a few days during the the peak of autumn, and it was kind of the best thing ever.

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Poncho: BB Dakota from TJ Maxx | Skinnies: J. Brand | Boots: Frye | Sunnies: Ray Ban | Necklace: J. Crew Factory | Bangles: Bourbon & Boweties | Bracelet: J. Crew Factory | Rings: Lilli & Tori and H&M

Who else is on the poncho bandwagon this fall?

Cases That Care

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Picking out a phone case is always a struggle. It has to be cute but not too cheaply made (hi Tory Burch), it has to actually protect your phone, but not be fugly — and also not be $230482034.99. What if you could find one that meets all these requirements and goes to an amazing cause? This is where Kidogo Kidogo comes in.

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Started by two sisters, Kidogo Kidogo aims to lift the financial barrier preventing women in Tanzania from having access to life-changing cellular service. For every two cases the company sells, a woman in Tanzania will receive a cell phone, sim card, and cell phone credit to get started learning how to use her new phone. Can you imagine a world without your phone at your fingertips 24/7? These women can’t imagine a world where they actually have that ability, and I love the idea of helping remedy that issue. Keep scrolling for photos of me pretending to talk on the phone, or click here to browse the Kidogo Kidogo site now!

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Tee: Topshop (similar) | Distressed Skinnies: Old Navy | Leopard Flats: Steve Madden (similar here) | Camo Jacket: Gap (similar here) | Scarf: Old Navy | Sunnies: Ray Ban | Watch: Forever 21 | Arrow Ring c/o Lilli & Tori | Other Rings: H&M | Temporary Tats: Flash Tattoos | Lips: MAC (Living Legend) | Nails: Essie (Merino Cool) | iPhone Case c/o Kidogo Kidogo

If you’re more of a plain iPhone case kinda gal and these designs don’t really interest you, they would make a great Christmas present idea! If you purchased two as stocking stuffers for your siblings, that would immediately give the ability of communication to a woman in need — something that we (I, especially) SO take for granted.

More from Kidogo Kidogo:
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

Trend Watch: Fall Florals

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Floral isn’t just for spring and summer anymore — this fall is all about florals in rich jewel tones and darker hues to take you into the cooler months. Even though my boyfriend some people often associate the feminine print with Grandma garb, this fall’s floral has been anything but. We’re used to floral being more delicate and sweet, but some fall 2014 patterns have been borderline badass which I’m really into.

To dip a toe into this trend, test out the waters with a floral d’Orsay flat, clutch, or nail decals (obsessed with Jamberry). To dive right in, go with a floral dress, skirt, or trench (like Blake Lively’s fab metallic number below)!
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Crop Top: Newlook | iPhone Case: Kate Spade | Backpack: Betsey Johnson | Nail Decals: Jamberry | Ring: Kate Spade | Skirt: Carven | Flower Studs: Catherine Stein | Scarf: Lily and Lionel | Bangle: Kate Spade | Peplum Top: J. Crew | d’Orsay Flats: Jeffrey Campbell | Clutch: Marc Jacobs | Blake Lively’s Trench: Valentino (a little cheaper here!)

Don’t you love how versatile this trend is? Although it’s super easy to go girlie, try to edge it up with a floral bomber jacket (like the one on Song of Style above) or wrap on the Lily and Lionel scarf with leather leggings and a sweater. The possibilities are endless.

(image source: grasiemercedes.com, theprettylovelyblog.blogspot.com, songofstyle.com)