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Blog

A fashion blog about weekend style

 

Filtering by Tag: Festive

Holiday Red-y

Jessica Wagner

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Bow Back Jumpsuit - Gal Meets Glam

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Just in time for the holidays - the newest Gal Meets Glam collection is here to help you get holiday red-y! And it’s EVERYTHING! From dresses to jumpsuits, Julia Engle has designed joyful pieces with the woman who will be wearing them in mind! Festive colors, playful cuts, oversized bows and plenty of sparkle, each item is sure to inspire, delight, and infuse happiness into your holiday celebrations!

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A few months ago Julia teased this red jumpsuit (it also comes in pink!) and ever since I have been saving up to make this special purchase fit into my shopping budget for all of our holiday soirées! I ordered it the very second the collection launched and when It arrived, with fingers crossed, I tried it on hoping it would deliver romance and elegance. (It did!)

I can’t explain how, but this jumpsuit fits so perfectly - to the point where it feels like it was made for me! I attest this fact, to this concept - “made by a woman for a woman!” Julia just GETS IT you guys! Like perfectly. I wish I could purchase every piece from her collection!

I will admit, I am a feminine dress girl and look for pieces that are glam, romantic, and vintage feeling. Gal Meets Glam meets these goals! Plus adds a modern flair. I will buy anything with ribbons or bows. 

I think it can be tricky to find pieces that feel special and feel special sometimes! I can only imagine Julia being so precise about every detail that goes into her garments. The big red bow and the way it draps over the shoulder! The length of the wide leg jumpsuit and the way it flows with your every move!

I don’t know about you , but I am either mingling, sipping, or dancing when it comes time to hit up the holiday party scene! This is an outfit that will allow me to feel comfortable if I need to bend over, pick up my kids, kick up a leg on the dace floor, or just taking in the festive scenes around me. 

When something makes me feel beautiful and special, it’s worth the investment. Plus I love to be celebration-ready and appreciate when it’s made easy! I love that this is a one piece and elevated with the attention to detail so you don’t have to worry about adding anything extra. Julia already included all the statement-making you need

When Gal Meets Glam first launched in the spring, I purchased a pink one-shoulder dress that might still be my favorite dress ever! I will include a few photos below, as they also showcase the amount of work, thought, and attention to detail that goes into each item until it’s perfect! Julia - your passion and mission to create beautiful dresses for women to feel amazing in, is 100% coming true! 

If you are looking for something to elevate your holiday gatherings this season check out the full collection here, or just visit for some major holiday inspiration in all silhouettes, prints and sizes!

I’m wearing Carmen in the shade of ruby. Both my pieces have fit true to size, and sizes range from 00 Petite - 20, which is similar to (16W-18W.)

Right now Gal Meets Glam has 40% off select dresses and styles!

You’re Invited

Jessica Wagner

Party Planning: Summer Soirée with Paperless Post

One cannot have too large a party
— Jane Austen

Summer is in full swing – and that means lots of seasonal celebrations! In my ideal world ever day would be a party. Since fancy cocktail and dinner parties don’t happen every night at our house, when it comes time to prep for a special occasion I tend to go all out – down to the smallest details. Big groups, or the more intimate affairs, I want every aspect to feel authentic and have an organic excitement to it!

Planning a summer soirée? How do you prep for celebrations?  I have multiple up-and-coming events that I am hostess for. I thought it would be fun to share how I scheme up ideas for our get-togethers, big and small.

First thing first – my end goal is always for everyone to have FUN and keep it EASY! (Followed by deciding what to wear!) I have literally planned whole parities around an outfit – haha. A theme doesn’t have to be obvious – for example, when planning our wedding (coming up on our 7 year anniversary whaaaaat!) I used “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” as my subtle inspiration. I also love a simple floral motif or color scheme (for my daughters 1st birthday we did gold and shades of pink.) One of my favorite parties was a 1920s dinner party we threw for one of my 20-year birthdays. It’s amazing how having a vibe can make a bash feel cohesive and thoughtful. Although mine usually turn into some sort of “champagne campaign” lol. Mimosa bars just work --and add an easy bit of effervescent liveliness.

I've had this whole *spiked lemonade* party planned out in my mind, and keep buying things for it – (AKA anything with a lemon on it – have you seen this post?) When life gives you lemons….  you share them with your friends! (In the form of spiked lemonade that is.) File this under charming and whimsical outdoor entertaining. Always looking for an excuse to share a cocktail with good company! Anyways, I guess all I need to do it set a date?

Once you decide to throw a party there are so many factors to consider – like how many people can I cram into our house? Or should I reserve a spot at the bar – hopefully one that’s not too loud/crowded. Or can I schedule enough time before hand to clean and provide nosh? Should we have a sit down dinner or keep it cocktail friendly? A daytime soiree? (Sit home alone with a bottle of wine and have a party of one?)

When it’s time for a seasonal entertaining I’m all about creating an atmosphere – it’s so important to set the mood.

Here are a few tips and ideas on making your next outdoor soirée one to remember.


PARTY PREP:

Once you decide to have a party, birthday, special occasion, or low-key get-together, you need an invite list. I am not a numbers girl, but for parties having a head count is numero uno. Once you have a number in mind you can set a budget and plan food, drinks, location.

INVITES:

An invite that is customized can tell your party-goers everything they need to know – what to wear and what to expect. Food? Drinks? Dancing? Entertainment?

When it comes to inviting your guests, do you use paper invites or do you prefer to use apps or online invitations?

Sure, sometimes a text or a Facebook group suffice, but what about when you want to make more of an impact? I personally love receiving tangible mail, and will proudly display it on our fireplace mantel, but to be honest, when you are the sendee it can get expensive quick! If you want to elevate your party-goers experience through presentation, another option is to use Paperless Post. They have an endless supply of beautiful, simple card designs that will make your shin-dig talk of the town. (I love this one, this one, and this one!)

Paperless Post reached out to me, and I am infatuated with their gorgeous prints! Since exploring their site, I am convinced digital invites are the way to go! For one, it’s a HUGE money and time saver! I know you are all looking for ways to save time and money. Plus, it’s a great way to go green, which is always a smart move. I lean sentimental, but I think a lot people toss out cards after giving them a quick glace.

Digital invitations/cards are a relatively new idea, but more and more people have started to use them for weddings, baby showers, bachelorette parties, birthdays, holidays, and other occasions. Here are a few favorites from their site!

Here’s the run-down. Paperless Post carries multiple high-end designers, such as Kate Spade, Rifle Paper Co. (one of my all-time favorites! Have you seen this dress post?) Charlotte Olympia, Liberty Fabrics, Kelly Wearstler, Sugar Paper LA (I love their wrapping paper seen in this post.) I love when fashion and print worlds collided, as it usually equals creative clever charm.

Let your imagination run wild– you can custom create your invite or greeting card to say whatever you want, without having to design the actual graphic or print. (Which is not my strong suit. I’m much better at mixing colors and patterns.) Their layout tools are really easy to use too!

So how does it work?

First, you pick your invite (and good luck narrowing it down – sooo many darling options!) Some digital styles come at a cost, and some are free. 

Next, you can customize your font, the envelope liner, and response card. There is a “preview” option for each design, so you can see what your guests will experience as they unveil their digital mail.

What an awesome and practical option for weddings, kids birthday parties, cocktail parties or even a surprise party! They also have amazing greeting cards, stationary, and thank you notes!

SET UP:

This part makes me giddy with excitement! I love to decorate, and add little touches to make the fest just that – festive! Fun paper straws, flowers, a custom drink of the night, music. Gather all your supplies as you plan ahead and keep them in a bin, so when the time comes all you need to do is grab your scissors and tape!

(Make sure you have scissors on hand. Multiple pairs. I always find when decorating or prepping someone is always asking for the scissors!)

PHOTOS:

If you are like me, you like to capture a few shots of your pretty little details and set up before your guests arrive! It’s fun to show off your creative handy work and maybe inspire someone else along the way.

I love my Instax Mini 8 for adding nostalgia to the night and giving guests a little take-away in the polaroid form. Nothing notes a memory a like photograph.

FOOD:

For a light picnic, BBQ or clam bake, take into account your gusts food preferences, allergies, and dietary needs. Make sure to provide a mix of options. Fruit, veggies and a main dish. I love a  decadent dessert spread and if someone offers to bring something take them up on it!

MUSIC:

Music will set the mood. (No, I don’t know how to play the ukulele. I took a guitar class in college and got a B. Like one of the only Bs I got in school. So I’m more of an air guitarist typically, but my sister plays the uke and taught me how to hold it so I look cool.)

Make a playlist, or I love to put on some Ella Fitzgerald or Billie Holiday or a Lumineers channel on Spotify. At home we use the record player and mix it up. Keep it light, and as the night goes on play somehting that will make your guests want to sing along or maybe have a triwl. I have a bunch of friends who do know how to strum a guitar, so tell them to bring it along!

DRINKS:

Make sure to supply options for the non-drinkers, but hopefully most are down for some "spiked lemonade in the glade," "rosé on the roof," or whatever else you want to throw out there as a party drink theme!

I love to make fruit and flower ice cubes too! So easy to plop a little berry, mint leaf, gummy bear, or rosebud into the tray and freeze! (It’s also something you can do ahead of time!)

***Don’t forget to actually spike that lemonade and garnish with a flower. (Pretty sure someone I know made accidental virgin jell-o shots once!!)

HOSTING:

As the hostess it is your job to serve your guests. Make them drinks, do introductions. You are the connector. Be gracious and offer to take purses/coats. Show them where the food and restrooms are. (Usually my first two stops at an event.)

FOWERS:

Bring blossoms to your host when you attend a soirée, and use them to decorate when you are hosting the soirée!

They don’t need to be excessive or over-the-top, but a few sprigs can really add a bit of whimsy and color. Babies breath and white daisies go with everything. (Or grab a few wild flowers!)

ATMOSPHERE/ COMFORT:

Take into account the weather. Make sure your gusts are comfortable. Provide fans, if it’s a hot day (this shoot was soooo humid!), seating, mood lighting, have some sort of entertainment planned. We usually end up playing games aka Cards Against Humanity and sometimes Rob will set up a DIY photo booth.

(Or you can always provide live ukelele entertainment, lemon juggling, poetry reading, and flower picking.)

OUTFIT:

Pluck a flower in your hair and be done! Add a hat, shades and a jumpsuit covered in fruit – haha ok I get not everyone is going to wear what they are serving at the party, but as hostess I say let yourself shine!

Go out and get a special dress or if that’s not your thing, put on your favorite laid-back tee. Your guests want to see that you are relaxed and comfortable, you really set a lot of the feel for the night. If you are running around frantic your guest are going to pick up on it.

Most importantly, have FUN! Otherwise – what’s the point?! When it comes to hosting a special night, just know the juice is worth the squeeze my friends!

A special thank you to Paperless Post for collaborating on this post!


I‘m going to end with a poem I wrote back in college: (My love of written word and citrine fruits is long standing. Weird fact: as a kid I would eat lemon slices - like whole.)


Lemonade

Sweet and sour

Next to you

My rush hour

Let me be

Wild flower

You dispense

I’ll devour

Squeeze tight

Electric power

Pucker up

Citrus shower


Outfit Details:
Jumpsuit: Anthropologie Lemon Grove Strapless Sunglasses: Anthropologie Sky Bag: Free People Miklos Marrakech Straw Basket Lips: Anthropologie Albeit Geranium Shoes: Old, (also love these here)

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Plaid With A Pom

Jessica Wagner

Christmas Tree Farm 

Family traditions can fill you with blissful joy or send you to into survival mode.  

So you better dress the part! (Let’s see who can guess by the end of this post if we were in “blissful joy” or “survival mode.”)

Layers of plaid and pops of primary make for a festive (and toasty warm) outing. Christmas Tree Farms require you to go outside and walk around, so while it seems obvious, this is a place you want to be cozy and comfortable. Say no to tulle skirts and heels, unless you plan on freezing your pretty tail off and leaving without a tree.

A playful hat, a thick scarf, and tall boots are a must. This dark blue equestrian-inspired cap adds a contemporary touch to a casual look. Layer under your woolliest coat with a solid turtleneck and preppy button down. The more berry red and mistletoe green the better.

Classic Hunter boots will keep your toes and feet protected from the blanket of needles, and prove once again to be the best boots ever. (Last seen here.) They are also a requirement for chasing after hot chocolate-fueled children.

I seem to have a category of clothing that comes out once a year (my sequin deer sweater for one) and these bright red skinnies. This candy-red vibrant shade brings any outfit into the holiday spirit.

Speaking of holiday spirit, I’m in a sharing mood. (Can you sense that this post has a lot of parenthesis? Hinting that I have comments to interject between my attempts to just write this out.)

Our trip to the tree farm this year almost sent my husband and I on a holiday strike (yipes!) Somehow (as they always do) things have a way of working themselves out, and we pulled together and were able to enjoy the crisp outdoors among the wooded forests hunting for the perfect pine. (No matter that one child refused to put on pants and the other only wanted to wear the same shirt he’s been living in for the last three weeks. I mean, I knew he would like a Grinch shirt - I did not know he would refuse to wear anything else and start to smell like said Grinch. Let’s hope it runs its course by the 25th.)

Last year we started the Christmas Tree Farm family tradition, and had the most magical time. We selected the sweetest Charlie Brown tree that needed some love; sipped hot chocolate on a horse and carriage ride, and the tree man snapped one of my favorite family photos to date.

This year . . .  let’s just say it was a little less enchanting and little more holiday comedy of errors. Coco was there to see the chickens, and made it her life’s mission to try and escape every chance she got (birds of a feather.) We could barely keep her hat on (it was cold!) and Noah just wanted to hug trees. We didn’t get a great family pic and as these things go, no matter how much you prep to make it all fun down to the dirty details, it all felt a little – dare I say it, forced?  So we stopped trying to channel that charming experience from last year and went with the nutty chaos. Do you know what? We still found the one, shared hot cocoa by a giant campfire and as tradition, listened to our favorite holiday record as we trimmed our tree that night, and she’s a real beaut.

So yes, while these family outings and traditions usually call for a good time had by all, don’t feel bad if you’re dashing through the snow and no one is laughing all the way. Or if no one seems like they want to be there. Ha! Because someday you will look back on that awkward family photo and smile, and the kids will remember that growing up you gave them more than just the things the asked for, but built them a castle with a forest, they will always be able to walk through, each tree filled with a memory. Raising young ones and keeping tradition alive can be a challenge, but know keeping those traditions is something everyone will look forward to year after year. 

Hope you are all enjoying this time of year to the fullest. As for me, I am off to enjoy what I hope will be a quiet weekend at home. Right! So wish me luck babes! :)

Outfit Details:
Hat: Old (similar here) Coat: NY&C (similar here) Top: J. Crew (similar here, also like this one) Turtleneck: Forever 21 (comes in many colors under $8) Scarf: Abercrombie & Fitch Bottoms: Old (similar here) Boots: Hunter Original Tour in Hunter Green Lips: MAC Lady Danger