LUXE HOLIDAY GIFT BASKET FOR LESS

diybasket0006Okay, okay, I know what you are thinking — “Gift Baskets are super boring and kind of lame,” but that is totally not true! I am here to win you over to the basket side of giving. Trust me, you’ll love it! Reason number one – they are fantastically customizable! So you’ve got an Aunt who is a bit tricky to shop for, or maybe you’ve found all of these cute little gifts for your sister but wrapping them all individually just isn’t going to happen. In walks in the Gift Basket and you’re suddenly a gift giving goddess. Here is how to build the most perfect gift basket ever! diybasket0001 (1)First things first, select 4-6 items that you know your giftee loves. Gift Baskets are for building, so have fun with it! I am building this basket for my foodie friend (who just happens to be our lovely Food Editor) Stancy, so I looked for things she would love — elements for the perfect cheese board! It’s important to add a bit of your personality in to the gift, so for a little extra personal flair, I added a DIY gift element to her basket.diybasket0004Who doesn’t love a fabulous wine stopper? And, if you happen to be fans of good wine (which we are) a wine stopper is a fun and easy element of surprise! Become a DIY wine stopper master in just a few steps here!diybasket0002Now that we’ve got all your elements, let’s begin to build! Firstly, grab a basket that fits your goodies. This is a great way to save a buck, so I always grab mine at the dollar store. Add a little padding to the base of your basket with raffia or another fun padding. I always lay down a linen napkin or piece of fabric before I place items in the basket. This adds an element of luxe and the draping affect it gives is so nice.diybasket0007Place your largest items in first to ground the gift. I placed one of my favorite bottles of wine, Kendall Jackson’s Grand Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, to ground the goodies and made it the focal point of the gift. Once you’ve got your largest item in, begin to place items from largest to smallest. Tuck the smallest goodies in to the spaces and build a layering affect. I placed my DIY wine stopper next to a little note to call it out and give it center stage.

HAPPY GIFTING!diybasket0008


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SIMPLE & ELEGANT THANKSGIVING TABLE INSPIRATION

Simple & Elegant Thanksgiving Inspiration

Hello, hello! Lindsey here!  I had so much fun partnering with Danielle Sabol and Whit + Wonder to create this festive holiday table in hues of deep red and dark grey with gorgeous copper accents for a beautiful Thanksgiving table inspiration.

We brought in textured greenery found at the local super market and paired them with copper painted eucalyptus and thistle to create a garland for our tabletop. Matte grey plates were highlighted with copper flatware (Target! Who knew?) for an affordable place setting, accented with simple “Thankful” place cards. Serve up cozy recipes like a bourbon pecan pie and apple spice sangria. Enjoy!

Simple & Elegant Thanksgiving Inspiration

Simple & Elegant Thanksgiving InspirationSimple & Elegant Thanksgiving InspirationSimple & Elegant Thanksgiving Inspiration

Simple & Elegant Thanksgiving Inspiration

Simple & Elegant Thanksgiving InspirationSimple & Elegant Thanksgiving InspirationSimple & Elegant Thanksgiving Inspiration

Simple & Elegant Thanksgiving Inspiration


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SETTING A THANKSGIVING TABLE

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Who doesn’t love a good holiday season? Besides the hectic run around, there is something really magical about cooler weather, bulky sweaters, and those tried and true family traditions. Thanksgiving, to me, is the holiday season kick off & the older I get, the more I love it. Helping my mom & grandmother in the kitchen used to be like pulling teeth, literally. I would have rather shoveled the driveway than reach my hand up a turkey. And while I still feel the same way about the turkey, my appreciation for the preparation, the thoughtfulness, and the meaning of Thanksgiving has grown immensely.

This season we wanted to celebrate the growing family of friendship and encourage you to celebrate old traditions and make new ones. Stay tuned for recipes, new traditions, and tips and trick on Thanksgiving entertaining throughout the week. For now, enjoy this year’s Thanksgiving Tablemakers! THANKSGIVING0063 THANKSGIVING0079 THANKSGIVING0057 THANKSGIVING0077 THANKSGIVING0083 THANKSGIVING0070 THANKSGIVING0052 THANKSGIVING0067 THANKSGIVING0066 THANKSGIVING0075 THANKSGIVING0094 1 THANKSGIVING0098 3 THANKSGIVING0092


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Florals: Posies Florals | Dinnerware & Centerpieces: Urbana | Jewelry: White Cat Stone & Metal | Wardrobe: Ruche

HOST A HALLOWEEN PARTY

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Halloween is my absolute favorite holiday. My parents, every year growing up, would have these huge Halloween parties. The furniture would be covered in white sheets, cobwebs would be strung from every possible surface, and their costumes were nothing short of amazing. My mom and dad would have evolving costumes, meaning they would change and grow as the night progressed. How can you not have an affinity for Halloween when it’s introduced to you like that?!

While many opt for a Halloween evening that involves going out and being seen, I much prefer to set the stage and have a bunch of friends over. Set up a buffet table with sweet, spooky treats, a festive libation or two, and create a relaxed, but celebratory environment. My favorite decorating tip is layering candles. This is the holiday where you can never have enough candles, so I make sure to layer them up in various places. HALLOWEEN0002 HALLOWEEN0003 HALLOWEEN0004 HALLOWEEN0005 HALLOWEEN0006 HALLOWEEN0007 HALLOWEEN0008 HALLOWEEN0009 HALLOWEEN0010


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ENTERTAINING IN AN APARTMENT

HT|DWF0025Hey, we get it. Space is a coveted commodity in an apartment. Don’t let having a lack of space discourage you from entertaining! We’ve got some fool proof, no hassle tricks to entertaining in an apartment that won’t leave you stressed, feeling insecure, or any of those other annoying insecurities. So, what are you waiting for?! Scroll down and invite some people over already.

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1. No Dining Table? No Problem!

Grab a cheap card table from Target or use your breakfast nook as a buffet area. Throw a fun tablecloth, or several if the shape is weird – think of it as layering, and an interesting arrangement on the table & you’ve got a place to put your food. If using a breakfast nook, place plates and flatware in the kitchen as a clean “start” to the buffet line & give your guests a clear path to follow. Interested in a card table option? Make sure to put your table in an area that allows for good traffic flow! No one likes a crowded buffet line.

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2. Makeshift Coat Closet

Coat closets are rarely used as such. More likely, they are seasonal, “I don’t know where the hell to put this” closets. When your guests arrive take their coats and put them in your bedroom or an office. Don’t let purses pile up in the entryway, but let your female guests know where the “coat room” is so they feel encouraged to leave their purses along and hang out. Who knows, you might even get a phone free dinner party out of it!

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3. Rearrange!

Embrace your space. If you don’t have room for everyone to sit, go for a more casual, relaxed vibe. Get a Moroccan vibe going by placing large, colorful pillows on the floor to encourage guests to get cozy on the floor. Have extra lawn chairs? Bring ’em out! Everyone is happy to get together, don’t let seating trip up having friends over.

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4. Shake it up

Have a great outdoor space? Let’s see it! Shake it up a bit by encouraging your guests to take the party outside after dinner. Offer a re-fill on drinks and suggest moving it outside – if weather permits. That being said, make sure you have proper pest control on hand. No one likes pesky pests nipping at your ankles.

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5. Drinks & Dessert

Still don’t feel like you have the space to properly entertain over dinner? Mix it up a bit and have friends over for dinner and drinks. Serve up several sweet options and multiple drink options. Don’t have a full bar? Make sure to have beer, wine, and the fixings for at least one signature cocktail!

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AUTUMNAL DINNER WITH KJ AVANT

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There are few things I love more than gathering a group of friends over for dinner with good food, good wine, and good conversation! Now, throw a little fall flair into the mix & I am a happy camper. Entertaining can be hectic, but it doesn’t have to be…

Add personal touches with fun DIY’s, select a menu that is inventive, but won’t have you scrambling last-minute, and never (ever) under-estimate the importance of good wine. The most important part of having people over is to remember to relax & have fun!

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Inviting a mix of old and new friends can a bit of a gamble, that is why these conversation menu cards are such a hit! Not only do you get to play hostess-with-the-mostest, you introduce your friends to new friends in a fun fashion!

See the full, simple DIY here

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constanceThank you Kendall-Jackson for sponsoring this post!

GONE GREEK SUMMER PARTY

1Hxjnb2tROjW1KtxoX_Fv3-5mjpJ2MyrAreqULpPrrY,VepkHnI3zOnkjI0ZeaY-ecuOAtBL_O480jLGn7Sw8e0When you are in the mood for a slightly exotic dinner party, one that evokes feelings of romance & travel – go greek! With warm Mediterranean blues, the festive menu, and the sun-splashed decor, you can’t help but kick back & relax. Greek food doesn’t have to be complicated & no one expects you to spend hours in the kitchen making your own baklava from scratch. Make a variety of dishes that show off the wide palette of the Mediterranean, while keeping a well balanced palette.

To really get in the Greek spirit, offer your guests a chilled glass of ouzo. This classic grecian beverage is best served neat – without ice – & if you need to dilute the spirit, make sure to mix in a little water. Ice will give the drink a crystalizing affect, but water will dilute the strength without washing away the taste.

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Images by Stancy Higley | Textiles by Proud Mary | Candles by Standard Wax |

Florals by Posies Floral | Styling by Lauren Kelp