Ten Holiday Outfits To Copy

I’ve seen a few people do similar posts, and I’ve enjoyed them because it’s nice to get outfit inspiration especially this time of year. I love seeing how other people put together outfits to help inspire my own creativity in my closet. I pulled ten of my favorite holiday outfits from the past few years, please check them out and let me know your favorite in the comments!

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How to Give a Thoughtful Gift

photo via extrapetite

The Christmas season is upon us and the time has come to finish your Christmas shopping. Buying gifts for others can be tricky, even if you know the person really well. Instead of putting together a list of general gift ideas, I put together tips to help you think of a gift that goes beyond the basic gift realm. Remember, putting the time and effort into getting someone a gift that fits their personality is part of what makes the gift special.

1. Brainstorm: Take a pen and paper and write down things you know about this person. It can be personality traits, likes/dislikes, hobbies, or their favorite possessions. This will give you a good place to jump start from and work off of as you think of that great gift. Use those keywords you wrote down later on in step #4.

2. “Snoop”: One of the best ways to figure out what a person might really want is to check out their social media. Pinterest and Instagram are great places to look for a common theme of things they may like. For example, if someone keeps pinning pretty hair clips, maybe they’d like to add one to their collection.

3. Look for Clues: Do they complain about something in particular? Find a gift that fixes their problem. (e.g. Your aunt complains how cold her house is therefore a heated blanket might be a great solution). Does the person rave about a particular product, place, or a person such as a celebrity? Write it down in your phone notes so you don’t forget. It may be a good clue for what to get them.

4. Research: Using all the tools above, find a common trend and start doing research. Look at various sites to find products reviews.  This is very important as the will help guide you on what product is best. If you’re looking for a unique gift, I highly recommend Etsy. You can type in any keyword and it will show you many different products both vintage or handmade that could make for a fantastic gift. Some of the best gifts I have given (and received) were from Etsy.

5. Wrapping: While it’s not necessary to wrap a gift nicely, a well wrapped gift shows thoughtfulness and attention to detail. It’s worth it to go the extra mile to finish off your gift with a well executed wrap job.

Do you have any other gift buying tips?

Christmas Dress

Today I wanted to show you my Christmas dresses through the years as well as this year’s. I don’t necessarily buy a new one every year, but I do have a dress I will designate for fancier Christmas parties.

This dress is from Modcloth many years ago. I don’t think they carry it anymore, but at that time “off the shoulder” dresses were impossible to find so I was happy to find this one. I love the neckline on it because it reminds me of something from the late 50’s/ early 60’s.

This dress is from Shabby Apple and one of my all time favorites. The material makes it pretty fancy, and I love the bows on the sleeves. It’s still on their website in light pink, but I bet a quick Ebay/Poshmark search would shows some results. It’s called “The Nutcracker Dress”.

 

This dress is from Camilyn Beth – a brand that always has lovely pieces in their collection. It’s hard to tell in the photo but there are small bows on the sleeves of this dress. I really like the silhouette because it’s really not something you see too often these days. I wore it on our Christmas card last year.

This dress is by Eliza J – a brand I’ve loved for years (even pre-Instagram). I used Eliza J dresses as my bridesmaid dresses and also have great luck with the fit of them. This dress has such a pretty, subtle pattern and lovely neckline. It’s one of my favorite dresses I own and I feel wonderful when wearing it. This dress is very similar. 

This year’s dress is a little different since I’m expecting, and I had limited options. I ended up finding this one on Ebay, and was pretty happy with it. I’m hoping I can wear it again for a Valentine’s Day date (if it still fits!).

Do you find a Christmas dress every year? What’s your favorite one from above?

 

A Little Creative Layering

Being 27 weeks into this pregnancy, I’m fitting into less of my “regular” clothes and having to take a more creative approach to dressing. I still want to put an effort into what I wear because I really feel my best when I do. I love this flannel, but unfortunately it does not button anymore, so I wore it over a maternity dress my sister-in-law loaned me and belted it above the belly. Incorporating my regular clothes into my maternity wardrobe takes a little bit of creativity and will help create more looks. I was pleasantly surprised how it turned out and became a nice and easy holiday outfit.

This necklace is a few years old from J Crew Factory, and I still love the way it looks layered underneath a button down to dress up the outfit a little bit. Paired with a red lip and my one of my favorite Dooney’s, I look and feel like myself. 🙂

Winter Knits

pom hat c/o pink pineapple shop / signature birdseye sweater c/o L.L. Bean / legging pants – uniqlo (mine are from their maternity line but I linked the regular ones) / bison bean boots – L.L. Bean

Winter is approaching, and now is a great time to stock up on the essentials you’ll be wearing all season. Although winter is really the same length as any other season, it seems the longest. In Michigan we get hit with cold weather from mid-November to early March, so I can justify having a wide array of sweaters, boots, and other cold weather accessories.

I was recently sent this birds-eye sweater shown above by L.L. Bean. The sweater and pattern are a 1912 L.L. Bean iconic style, shown in an updated silhouette in their signature collection. From the second I tried it on, I was in love. The whole look and feel of the sweater is so classic (and warm), and the length is great for wearing with leggings. I really like the neckline as it’s like a mock turtleneck and very flattering. The sweater runs pretty large – I am wearing a small and am pregnant. If you go down two sizes and you will be extremely happy with this piece! It’s something I will reach for for years to come.

I was also sent this Icelandic wool hat from the Pink Pineapple Shop. If you are in the market for a beanie, this shop has tons in different colors and styles (even some with anchors on it). I love the cream as it goes with my winter wardrobe so easily. I prefer my beanies more fitted than “droopy” so I folded the brim up on this hat and love the way it looks. I’ll be wearing this style til the snow melts.

Have you been stocking up on items for winter? This year is a little different for me being pregnant, but I did ask for a few clothing items for Christmas knowing they won’t fit until the following Christmas. I appreciate that I’ll be able to wear this forgiving L.L. Bean sweater for awhile longer. 🙂

A Tip for Watch Owners

If you’re someone who owns a lot of watches, you may find yourself only wearing some of your watches seasonally. I have a few watches I wear more in the colder months, and don’t wear them at all in the summer months. They’re usually bulkier/darker ones that I tend not to choose in the summertime.

A great way to save your watch battery is to take the watches you aren’t wearing regularly and pull out the side knob so that the time stops. If it’s not running, it will help conserve your battery and give you double the use out of timepiece.

My mom gave me this tip recently as I brought a few of my favorite watches in to get the battery changed. I only wear them in the winter and wish I would have known this tip before. Hope this can help someone else!

Plaid for Christmas

top row r-l: dress  /  dress  /  dress

bottom row r-l: blouse  /  skirt  / button down

I like to buy a few new “stand out” items to add to my Christmas wardrobe each year, and they usually always end up being plaid. I hope I never get to the point where I think tartan is too over the top and resort to wearing all neutrals. That seems too boring for this festive time of year!

My two favorite items above are the dress in the top center and the button down shirt on the bottom right. I love the tartan colors in the dress, and the pocket on the button down is unexpected. A good time to buy these items would be Cyber Monday so you’ll get a discount and are able to wear them all holiday season.

I almost entitled this post “Things I’d Buy if I Weren’t Pregnant” as they are all items that won’t fit me this year. I might just wait til after Christmas and see if I can get them at a deep discount in my regular size for next Christmas. I get sad thinking of all my normal “holiday” outfits that I traditionally wear that I’m unable to this year, but it’s really no big deal and this time next year I’ll be back to wearing all my favorite things and maybe even a few new things! 🙂

J Crew Shopping Hack

top row: coat / vest / hat / gloves

bottom row: scarf / skier pajamas / nordic boots

J. Crew’s holiday line is full of great finds this year with lots of plaids, gold, shearling, & preppy motifs. Some of these “stand out” items are hot sellers come Black Friday and it’s not uncommon for them to sell out quickly. To ensure you get exactly what you want from J Crew without missing out on their Black Friday / Cyber Monday deals, you’ll want to buy less than seven days ahead of time.

Works for online orders only: When you buy from J Crew’s website, you have one week from ship date to get a price adjustment. So if I buy something tonight with 25% off, it most likely won’t ship out until Friday at the earliest (if not later than that). This means come Black Friday when they normally run 40% off, I’ll be able to call and get the price adjusted. Buying in-store is a little different so keep this in mind!

I’m interested in getting the nordic boots shown above (comes with neutral and red laces), and last year they sold out very quickly. I figured if I use the strategy above I’ll be able to get them before they sell out and still get a great sale price – hopefully 40% off.

My husband doesn’t care for them, but I think they look so warm and will be a shorter and more lightweight option to slip on since my other winter boots are taller. Not all my pants are “tall boot friendly” and instead of stuffing them into winter boots when the snow hits, I would like to put these on instead. I really like the vintage nordic look that these boots have! I’m not asking for many clothes this year since I’m pregnant and my normal size no longer fits, so I figured boots might be a safe bet for a Christmas gift.

Have you ever used a price adjustment strategically?

What do you think of the nordic boots?

As always, I don’t use affiliate links so no money goes towards me and all my opinions are 100% my own.

 

L.L. Bean Sale

sweater fleece pullovermountain pile fleece vest

wicked good camp slippers   / original 8″ bean boot

fisherman sweater / chunky knit bird’s eye sweater

L.L. Bean doesn’t run many sales, which means most of the time people are paying full price for their items (and rightfully so, the quality is worth the price). Normally around Christmas they will run 15% off, but for the first time in years they are running a 25% off everything – including bean boots. Many items are already sold out on the website because of this great deal.

All the items above are ones that I own and highly recommend. If you’ve been waiting to pull the trigger on something, now is the time to buy it! The one item I was hesitant to get were the slippers because I didn’t want to pay $79 for something I just wear around the house. I ended up asking for them for Christmas over 2 years ago and still year them everyday year-round. I couldn’t be happier! There are 500+ good reviews on them if that tells you something. 🙂

My mom is always asking for ideas for Christmas so right when I heard of the sale I asked for this hat (now sold out, but thankfully she snagged it in time), and these snowshoes for me and for Joe. We snowshoe 4-5 times a winter and our old snowshoes come undone so often while using them. I’m excited to try a pair with this different bindings that make it easier to use.

Did you get anything from the L.L. Bean sale?

As always, I don’t use affiliate links so no money goes towards me and all my opinions are 100% my own.

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