As much as I love a good, colorful holiday moment (exhibit Aand exhibit B) – I also love a simple, ‘winter white’ cold weather look.
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I love how this ivory faux fur lined parka is neutral enough to go with everything but still really brightens up a dreary winter day (as opposed to my typical black parka that just plain depresses me by the time February rolls around). Perfect for taking a spin around the ice rink.
Speaking of ice skating – this Winter I’m determined to embrace the activities that can only be done in cold weather (instead of spending approximately 3 months wishing for 70 degrees to show up again). Even if that’s just cozying up inside and allowing more time to read, or finally watching a bunch of classic old movies I’ve never seen. Things I’d never do in summer. Winter is exactly the time! And if I do have to actually you know, leave the house, at least I’ll be bundled up in a cute coat.
I always find the hardest holiday events to dress for are those that fall somewhere in between 0-NYE glitz. A Christmas Eve dinner with your in-laws for instance or your office holiday party. Where you want to be more conservative than say, a backless sequin dress, yet still dressed up and festive. This outfit is my solution.
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I love the simple shape of this knee-lengthwrap dressand the fact that it’s made fun by the metallic knit – which gives just the right amount of subtle sparkle. My office holiday party is always at the end of a regular workday so finding something that doesn’t look crazy when I walk to work at 8AM but still feels party-ready at 7PM can be tricky. This would definitely work. I paired with these cute embellished flats (my family functions are usually pretty casual so heels feel overdone) and these superlightweight statement earrings for a finishing touch.
Also – this hairstyle looks fancy but couldn’t be easier to do. I’m going to add a quick tutorial to Instagram this week! Basically a tuck and roll situation.
Oh you know, just out here collecting firewood for our decorative fireplace.. ha. But really, I finally revealed the before/after of our Fireplace Makeover and am still kind of just staring at it in awe. Home is always what you make of it and a little bit of DIY magic can go a long way in my opinion.
I’ve been bursting to share this project with you guys! This all began months ago, flipping through design books and swooning over incredible fireplaces. Staring at the decorative fireplace in our living room I couldn’t help feeling like it hadn’t quite reached its full potential. And so my little dream of a fireplace makeover began. And also where The Home Depot came in. I was thrilled to sign on to partner with them on this project since they’ve always been our go to source for home DIY projects throughout the years. For the complete play by play of how this whole thing miraculously came together (just $300, a few splinters and a swear word or two along the way…) – visit my full post on The Home Depot blog.
And just for fun – a few things we learned along the way. In case you’re inspired to tackle your own rental-friendly DIY fireplace makeover (or really any other home project your heart desires).
THINGS WE LEARNED:
When all else fails – search for a YouTube video or sand it down a bit more. Ha.
Measure twice (or three.. or four times), cut once. Something my Dad (the ultimate DIY-er) ingrained in me very early on. I can’t tell you how many times we checked measurements on trim for this and thankfully never made a mistake in cutting.
Working with brick (and old apartment floors!) is tricky since you’ll never get a perfectly level surface or straight edge. Instead of letting it drive you crazy – make friends with shims. There’s a couple of them hidden throughout this fireplace.
A lot of people find DIY home projects with their partner to be a recipe for disaster. We’ve found having a really clear plan (lots of lists and sketches), talking through each step before we begin and encouraging each other when the other starts to lose hope (somewhere in hour 35 I promise it will happen) goes a long way.
Most importantly – don’t let the fact that you’re a renter stop you from maximizing your home’s potential. Sure, we likely won’t live here forever so someday we’ll have to leave this fireplace behind and technically we invested time and money into someone else’s place. But in the meantime? It’s ours and I have a smile on my face every single time I walk in the door and see this fireplace. Totally worth it in my opinion. Same goes for bothering to paint the walls in a rental, switch out a light fixture or upgrade drawer pulls. The littlest changes can have the greatest impact and make your time (however fleeting) in a rental infinitely more enjoyable.
Thank you to The Home Depot for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions are my own.
I didn’t plan on doing a Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale post this year (I think it’s honestly fairly easy to find what stores are having sales and I really don’t want to encourage people buying a ton of things they don’t even need..) – but that being said I’m really in the market for things to keep furnishing the new apartment this year and there are some awesome home-related sales that I wanted to mention in case you’re looking to do the same thing. With 25% off my favorite source for rugs and 40% off one of my secret go-to spots for furniture, I thought it was worth posting about. Hope this helps you score a great discount on something you actually really need and will use/love this year.
I’ve been eyeing one of these mirrors for the bedroom for over a year now and 30% off is definitely the best price I’m going to get. I also love Anthro for stocking up on candles and vases and really special holiday decor.
This is my favorite source for beautiful, good quality rugs that don’t break the bank. I have this great faux cowhide rug that I love from them and am on the hunt for a pretty pattern for the living room. They’ve also got a really fun selection of wallpaper (this is a contender for the statement wall I want to do behind our bed).
WEST ELM: Buy more, save more sale up to 30% off with code SAVEMORE
This is a great time to grab bedding (like their belgian linen), lighting (this one is in our entryway) or big ticket furniture (this leather armchair has been on my apartment wish-list for easily like 4 years).
World Market has been a secret source of mine for super affordable furniture now for years. Our old dining room table came from there and my current desk chair (still available in this pink color that would be so pretty in a nursery or as a fun accent) and both held up really well for the price. I love their selection of couches, end tables and headboards if you are looking for a good IKEA alternative.
TARGET: Up to 40% off home + extra 15% off furniture & rugs with code TURKEY
Target is another great design resource if you’re on a budget – they’ve got things that honestly look just like West Elm for a fraction of the price. My favorite floor lamp is from there and I can never resist their home decor.