Shopping

Pretty in…Purple?

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First, I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of love following yesterday’s post! I was beyond touched with all of your kind words and encouragement, and so thankful that I was also able to touch some of you with my experience. But, enough of the yucky feelings talk- today’s post is all about a dress that makes me feel good!! You know, that one you can put on no matter how down you are and still feel like a million bucks?! It’s all about finding the colors, shape and fit that’s flattering on your body and most importantly, makes you feel confident.

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My favorite trend for summer has by far been off the shoulder tops and dresses. It’s a similar problem to my 2014 romper craze and I just can’t get enough of it. There’s something so sexy about a showing a little shoulder skin and I instantly feel feminine and confident in this style. Add in the gorgeous lace and hip hugging in just the right places and you’ve got yourself the perfect dress for date night or GNO! Bonus: it’s on sale right now for HALF OFF, and if you’re not one for color, it also comes in black.

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Speaking of color, the description says “corn flower blue” and it appeared to be a soft baby blue. Clearly that is not the case. I’m not going to lie, when I got it in the mail I was really disappointed that it was more of a purple. My elementary, middle & high school colors were purple and white, so I’ve successfully kept it out of my wardrobe ever since graduation. I mean, a girl can only wear bright purple for so long. But, the more I stared at this dress in my closet, the more the color grew on me, and now I’m just plain obsessed! Purple had been so far gone from my life for so long that I almost feel like I’m discovering a new color to wear! Besides, this is more of a periwinkle than a true purple, so I don’t think I’ll get mistaken for a First Baptist student anytime soon. (because other than that I totallyyy look like I could pass as a high schooler-right?!)

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Photos: Katie Capo of Catherine Ann Photography

Dress: Topshop | Shoes: Steve Madden from Belk | Bag: Ted Baker from Gwynn’s of Mt. Pleasant | Lipstick Color: Dior Addict Fluid Stick in Wonderland #575

Valentine’s Day Gift Guide for Her

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This Valentine’s Day wish list errr I mean, gift guide, has a little bit of everything for any special lady in your life!! Use it to find a great surprise for your mom, sister or that one friend you know is going to have a tough Feb. 14th this year. Or, show it to your man for a no brainer shopping list for you! Either way, you’ll be giving or receiving something sweet and pretty in pink this Valentine’s season!

1. Essie Polish in Fiesta– You can never have too many pink nail polishes!! Fiesta by Essie is my go-to!! It’s especially crucial to keep these polishes on hand if you’re a recovering gel nail addict like me. – $8

2. Dior Addict Lip Glow in Sheer Pink– The Dior Addict products are basically the best thing that ever happened to my beauty arsenal! They go on smoothly, last all day & come in fabulous colors. The sheer pink color is so sweetly feminine and will look great on anyone! – $30

3. Kate Spade Cedar Street Maise Satchel in Rosy Dawn– Let’s look past that cheesy color description name and think about how great of a gift this would make for the woman in your life!! If you aren’t into the “rosy dawn” (gag) there are several other pink tones that would also be great for your Valentine! If you’re local to Charleston, you can also find this bag at Gwynn’s in Mt. Pleasant. – $298

4. Kate Spade Small Square Studs in Light Pink– Light pink sounds much better, right? These pretty little studs are a great gift if you’re not looking to break the bank, but still give something special! If you’re local to Charleston, you can find these at Southern Protocol Boutique. (along with tons of other great Kate Spade gifts) – $38

5. Ahh-Larm– Nothing says “I love you” more than wanting to protect the women in your life! The Ahh-larm is an alarm, flashlight and stylish keychain all in one. Bonus: it’s a little on the large side, so losing your keys is never an issue! If you’re local to Charleston, you can find these at Out of Hand in Old Village. – $24.99

6. Moon & Lola Coffee Mug– Ahhh the gift that keeps on giving! Your Valentine will be reminded of how much you love them every time they pick up their mug and are told they’re gorgeous! This makes a great gift for someone that you don’t want to spend a ton, but want to make a big impact. – $28

7. Marysia Antibes Scalloped Bandeau Bikini– It’s never too early to start preparing for the warm weather!! This makes a great gift alone, or even better alongside plane tickets for 2 to Tulum! I love Marysia’s scalloped style and wore a red one on last Valentine’s Day in the Caribbean myself! – $260

8. Made By Girl Watercolor Lips– I’ve been obsessed with Made By Girl and her work for a long time! (seriously follow her on Instagram, you won’t be disappointed) Her pieces are perfectly girly and fun! This is a great gift for your sister or bff! – $14 unframed or $42 framed

9. Kate Spade Clear Hearts iPhone Case– What does a girl keep closer to her than your heart- her iPhone of course! I don’t mean to go overboard on the Kate Spade, but she is just always so on point with accessories and gift ideas! – $40

10. Manolo Blahnik Pump Light Pink– If you’ve been a really good girl this year, you may find yourself adding a new pair of pink pumps to your collection!! These babies are the perfect wow factor gift. And hey, if you don’t have a Valentine, you can always treat yourself! – $595

My Favorite Basics + LaaLee Giveaway

DSC_0550Today I wanted to share with y’all some of my favorite basic pieces that are essentials in my winter wardrobe. I’ve also got a super exciting giveaway with a fabulous jewelry designer that will be starting today, with the winner being announced next Friday! But, more on that a little later. This outfit is basically (hehe couldn’t resist) made up of black and white pieces that are easy to mix and match with almost anything. The coat is a Calvin Klein piece that I’ve had for years and found at, get this, Costless Outlet for under $50. Despite it’s age, it’s very on trend this year with the oversized coat phenomenon. It’s the perfect simple wool coat that can be worn over practically any winter getup. Of course, I’ve got a similar option down in the links for y’all!DSC_0546DSC_0577DSC_0555The top may not be super wintery to those of you in places that actually get cold, but here in fickle weathered Charleston, tops like this are a must have. It’s a great choice to layer under a sweater or like I did here, throw a coat over. I love that it’s so simple and comfortable with the solid white tee-shirt style back, but looks put together with the silky fabric front. Also, something about those black and white stripes just exude elegance! A pair of black pants and a pair of leather leggings are both a wardrobe essentials these days, but why not combine them and have a simple leather stripe down the side of your black pants? It avoids the whole sweating in your leather leggings situation (you know you’ve been there) but still jazzes up the basic black pant. These are SO comfortable and very flattering, so they get my vote! DSC_0607DSC_0560DSC_0589Then there’s my newest spoil myself purchase, my YSL mini bag. I’m telling you, if you want to splurge and buy yourself a nice but practical bag, this is the way to go! I’m absolutely obsessed with this minimalist chic look. Of course, I couldn’t do an all black and white outfit without a little pop of color, so I threw on these fab red suede pumps. While they definitely stand out a bit more than the other pieces, I still consider these a winter basic because they go with so much! They’re great to throw on with anything black, white, leopard and I’m especially loving mixing red and pink or purple for the holidays. DSC_0624DSC_0628Y’all know I like to keep my jewelry simple, so a few dainty layered necklaces are always my go-to look. I love this “Mrs.” necklace that just screams “I’m so married” – if you don’t get that reference and haven’t watched the video you must! Then, there’s the bar necklace that really never leaves my neck. It can be layered with just about any other necklace whether it’s another simple gold piece, a long tassel style necklace or even a statement piece. It’s so simple, but so chic! DSC_0631Now, for what y’all have either a. have been waiting for or b. just scrolled down to the bottom to see (i’m totally onto you) – the giveaway info!! So, laalee is a beautiful jewelry line designed by the super sweet southern belle, Christy Mims, out of Lafayette, Louisiana. I originally came across her designs when I was searching for jewelry for my bridesmaids to wear in our May wedding. I was instantly drawn to her fashion forward, but antique inspired pieces, styled on beautiful vintage china. Her blush champagne teardrop earrings were exactly what I had been looking for to compliment my bridesmaid’s rosewater colored dresses. Christy was SO sweet and so easy to work with which was a huge bonus for me being a busy bride. I wound up getting my entire bridal party and family’s jewelry from laalee. There are so many colors and styles to choose from, she has something for every bride and wedding party. But, Christy couldn’t get rid of me after the wedding was over! Not only does she have the best selection of bridal party jewelry, but she also makes jewelry fit for everyday purposes. In comes that FAB bar necklace!! There’s a little bit of everything on her site from dainty necklaces and bangles to trendy druzy style jewelry, and YOU have the chance to win a $50 to her shop!! All you have to do is follow me (@southernmeetschic) and laalee (@laaleedesigns) on Instagram and comment “followed and entered” on any of the pictures posted in reference to the giveaway. This will run today through next Friday the 19th at noon and I will announce a winner at 5:00 on Friday afternoon. It doesn’t stop there though!! All of my SMC readers will shop for 15% off their entire purchase with the code 15OFF in the laalee shop!! Brides, this is the perfect time for you to check jewelry off your list!!

Coat- Calvin Klein old (similar here) | Top- J. Crew | Pants- J. Crew Factory Store | Pumps- Kate Spade old (similar here) | Bag- Saint Laurent | Mrs. Necklace- Kate Spade from Southern Protocol Boutique | Bar Necklace- laalee designs

Black Bootie Dilemma 2014

I know, I know “black bootie dilemma” is a bit dramatic, but if you’ve been on the market for a pair, then you feel my pain! First of all, I’m a little picky when it comes to black and especially black leather. There’s just always been something about it that screams “BIKER CHICK” and as much as I love Sons of Anarchy, (so sad about tomorrow night) I don’t particularly want to dress like a cast member. Then, there’s the fact that every time I fall in love with a pair, the price tag quickly crushes all of my dreams. So, assuming that I’m not the only girl on the face of the earth having these issues, I thought a little Real vs. Steal black bootie edition would be the perfect way to kick off the week! (see what I did there)

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The Everyday Suede Bootie:

I’m pretty sure that this is THE ONE for me! This style can go with everything from jeans and a sweater to tights and a nice dress. The mid-height heel keeps them comfortable, but still tall enough to give your legs a little Kendall Jenner effect. BONUS: they’re suede, so that rules out any biker babe confusion.

Rag & Bone Newbury / Sole Society Livvy

The Flat Bootie:

This minimalist chic style is for the girl who wants the look, but without the bother of a heel. These are so on-trend when paired with black leather skinnies or rolled up dark denim. Also, try replacing your classic ballet flats with these to take any outfit up a notch!

Lanvin Chelsea / Aldo Alieng

The Hot Heeled Bootie:

The sky high leather bootie is the best choice for any party girl! These are the ideal booties to dress up and wear out. The thin heel and pointed toe make this a dressier option and while not as practical as the first two, will definitely make you stand out in a crowd. This is a perfect replacement for black pumps in freezing temps.

Saint Laurent Classic Paris 110 / Madison Harding Zenia

 

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unnamedThe time has come for me to tell y’all the big surprise I’ve been hinting at all week! You may have noticed that every look on SMC this week was head to toe Gwynn’s. If you’re not familiar, Gwynn’s is the only locally owned luxury department store in the Charleston area. They carry everything from home decor and cosmetics to menswear and of course, women’s fashion. They are always my first stop for designers such as Tory Burch, Kate Spade, Jimmy Choo and J. Brand. Starting tomorrow, every single piece that you saw on the blog this week is on sale! It doesn’t stop there though, because actually the ENTIRE STORE is on sale!! No restrictions, no limits, everything is anywhere from 10% to 70% off, even the big brands that hardly ever go on sale! Even better, the sale opens to the public on Sunday, but special VIP’s (read: you guys!) will get to shop the sale starting tomorrow!! That’s one day early to beat the crowd and get that item you’ve been swooning over! Don’t live in the Charleston area? No worries! Just give Gwynn’s a call and they will assist you with your purchase, plus give you free shipping!! After you’ve finished shopping for yourself, this is the perfect chance to knock some people off your holiday gift list. You really can find something for everyone on your list here. Just a little hint (and sneak peek into my gift guide coming in December): Brackish bow ties for the boys (particularly the Clemson/Carolina colors), Nest candle for your grandmother, Hunter boot liners for your little sis and Laura Mercier body scrub for Mom!! Plus, they offer beautiful complimentary gift wrapping, so you leave with a present that can go straight under the tree!

Here’s a little recap of this week’s looks from Gwynn’s that you can now find up to 70% off!!

southern-meets-chic-gwynns-5southern-meets-chic-gwynns-26southern-meets-chic-gwynns-51southern-meets-chic-gwynns-47These fab looks from designers like Jimmy Choo, Kate Spade, Tory Burch, Alice + Olivia and Alexis Bittar at up to 70% off?!? Now that’s something to celebrate!! If you’re interested in purchasing something you see here and don’t live in the Charleston area, call Gwynn’s at 843-849-9667

Photos by: Catherine Ann Photography

Handbag Heaven

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Let me first begin by clarifying, I did not purchase a Birkin!! Only in my dreams would that happen! However, I was lucky enough to spend yesterday afternoon swooning over beautiful handbags and jewelry from designers such as Hermés, Chanel, Céline and Louis Vuitton. My dream day was all thanks to Gwynn’s of Mt. Pleasant for inviting me to an exclusive sneak peek of their trunk show they’re holding this weekend, just so I can share with y’all!

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Gwynn’s is the only locally owned luxury department store in the Charleston area. They carry everything from clothing and accessories to home decor and dining ware. Many of the designer brands they carry are exclusive to Gwynn’s in the area such as Jimmy Choo and Tom Ford. The most recent addition to their collection is the What Goes Around Comes Around line, providing Charleston with high end designer handbags that cannot be found anywhere else!

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What Goes Around Comes Around specializes in authentic vintage and luxury goods. You can always shop their pretties at Gwynn’s, but they’ve flown in some REALLY special pieces for the trunk show being held this weekend! For two days only they will have a surplus of these designer bags and jewels for you to shop! Can you say early Christmas present to yourself?!

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You can shop the What Goes Around Comes Around collection this Friday and Saturday (today and tomorrow) at Gwynn’s of Mt. Pleasant from 10 am to 7 pm. If you aren’t local to the area, but see something you have to have, give them a call at 843-849-9667 and they will assist you.

Top- Dandy Boutique // Booties- Aldo {similar here}

 

REAL VS STEAL- Backpack Edition

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It’s that time of year again, back to school!! But, you don’t have to be a student or teacher to get in on the festivities. I’m not talking about plaid skirts and knee highs, but backpacks. They have been huge among celebrities and big name designers and are a great way to switch up your traditional purse. The options I have listed are great for work, travel or even everyday use. The runway versions are obviously fab, but let’s talk about some similar styles that will be a bit kinder on your wallet!

1. Alexander McQueen Padlock Backpack- This black leather style is a classic beauty. I think it is so chic and easily goes with any outfit to take your style up a notch. But, this Target option is almost exactly the same AND I actually like it better. The gold zipper detailing gives this look a like a step up over the $2,000 designer bag. The fact that it’s not genuine leather also makes this more practical for carrying around, not to mention more animal friendly! This bag can easily go from casual with your leggings and piko to dressy with your office attire.

2. The Row Hobo Backpack- Okay, so let’s face it, anything Mary-Kate and Ashley is perfection. Those two can do no wrong when it comes to fashion. But, their line The Row founded in 2006 is a far cry from their Walmart brand we were all wearing back in the day. (you totally were, don’t deny it) The price tags are ridiculous, making it impossible for non-heiresses to purchase their designs. This Vince Camuto backpack is a great compromise. While still a bit pricier than your typical Jansport, this backpack is real leather and certainly more luxurious. This is the perfect option to use as your everyday purse.

3. Chanel Graffiti Print Backpack- So, unless you’ve been living under a rock all summer, you’ve seen this backpack. It has been worn by almost every celebrity from Gwyneth to it girl Chloe Grace Moretz {LOVE her} to practically every Kardashian. Not to mention, Karl featured it in the Spring 2014 runway show. BUT, let’s get real, who wants to pay over 3,000 bucks for a grungy style backpack? I mean I love it, don’t get me wrong, but I can think of many other Chanel bags I would put that money towards instead! Rather, go for this Neff tie dye for a very tiny fraction of the cost. I think the Neff is super cute and still gives that artsy, graffiti {read: homemade} look. This is definitely more of your travel or school backpack rather than everyday use.

Do YOU have a particular item that you would like to see more budget friendly versions of?? Let me know in the comments!! I LOVE to hear from my readers! Happy Humpday everyone XOXO

Black and White and Chic All Over

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I’m not going to lie to you, this post is as much for me as it is for y’all! Having just moved into a new home on Friday, my brain is in full on home decor mode right now. At the top of my favorites list is anything and everything black and white. I feel like black and white decor just really gives any space a chic, classy look. You can go this route with any room in the house, but I’m using this theme in our bedroom. We already had an ivory upholstered headboard and mirrored furniture, so going for the black and white scheme was kind of a no brainer. All it takes is just one or two of these items to spruce up an area, but if you really want the full look then go with all of it! Just remember to keep everything else in the room fairly simple. If I were adding all of this to my room I would do solid white bedding with these accents and of course, some pops of gold! I’ve chosen six of the top black and white pretties that I’m currently lusting over and I hope you will love them too!

1. Diptyque Mimosa Mini Candle – If you follow any bloggers then you’ve seen this trendy French candle casually placed in one of those ridiculously perfect Instagram photos probably involving pink peonies and a Chanel book. Well guys, I totally drank that Kool-Aid and bought one yesterday. After 15 minutes of standing in front of the display smelling the same scents over and over, I went with the Mimosa. It’s a fresh and romantic smell perfect for my bedroom. I’m already planning that once Fall rolls in, I’m going to go back for the Baies, which has a bit more of a musky scent, and is their best seller. If you don’t want to splurge for a candle, you can get the same scent in the “mini” version for half the price and still burns 30 hours. You can buy online or locally in Charleston at Blue Mercury, which also happens to be my favorite makeup store in the area.

2. Chanel: Collections and Creations– Every fashionista needs to have a collection of Chanel books. Period. But, even if you aren’t that into fashion, these make amazing coffee table or bedside table books. Just as anything Chanel does, the books exude class and elegance. Using these as decor will give your room an instant pop of chic! Not to mention, they’re even more beautiful on the inside than the out.

3. Jonathan Adler Letter Pillow– Another trendy item, these pillows grace the couches of celebrities like Giuliana & Bill Rancic and designer Max Azria. They are the chic alternative to the traditional southern style monogram. I think they’re perfect for in the bedroom to have the initial of you and your significant other. He even makes an & sign to go in-between. BONUS- these are also reversible to be black with the ivory initial. So, these pillows are basically two in one!

4. Made By Girl Print– I stumbled upon Jen Ramos, the artist behind Made By Girl on Instagram (of course) and instantly fell in love. I mean, check out her about page and tell me I’m wrong! She creates super ridiculously cute paintings, like this L’amour Triomphe De Tout, which means Love Conquers All in French. This print is a super easy and inexpensive way to pull some chic black and white {and French} artwork onto your walls. It’s perfect to stand alone as seen above, or add to a collection. For a higher price, you can also purchase her original artwork at Cocoa and Hearts. You can also feel great about all of your purchases with Jen because the proceeds go towards she and her husband’s adoption fundraiser aka Art for Adoption- love being able to help this adorable couple out!

5. Outdoor Rug– Okay, so stripes are everything already, but black and white stripes are just a whole other level. I know this rug is for outside, but you can’t contain chic to just IN the house, can you? A lot of times I feel like outdoor decor is cheesy or tacky, but this proves that outdoors can be elegant too. Pair this with your outdoor furniture and then use some pops of bright colors in your throw pillows and you’ve got a perfect space. Even better, it’s on clearance!

6. Fornasetti Ashtray– No, I’m not a smoker. But using ashtrays as home decor has been done for years and made especially popular by luxury brands such as Hermes. I mean, have you seen how gorgeous their ashtrays are?! You definitely wouldn’t actually want to put ashes in them. You can use them to hold your rings at night, change or even just have out on display. This classic Fornasetti with Lina Cavalieri’s face is the perfect combo of eclectic and elegant.

I hope y’all enjoyed my first home decor post! Do you have a favorite of any of these items? What about a black & white decor item you love and would like to share? I would love to hear from YOU!!

REAL vs STEAL- shoe edition

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For a little treat on this rainy Friday evening, I wanted to share with y’all my first REAL vs STEAL! My favorite thing to shop for in the fashion world is shoes, so I thought that would be a great place to start. Dress from the shoes up- that’s what they say, right?! If you’re like me, you love to keep up with the latest high fashion trends and see what all of the big designer’s are coming out with and the celebrities are wearing. But, sometimes their prices are just NOT easy on a girls’ wallet! The great thing is you can find similar styles for a mere fraction of the cost!! No, I’m not talking about those fake Louis Vuitton bags you bought on your 8th grade trip (totally guilty). These aren’t “fakes” or “replicas” they’re just budget friendly versions of what is hot right now!

1. Valentino Rockstuds- Okay, so I totally have a pair of these and I absolutely LOVE them!! But, that was also before seeing these strikingly similar pair from Tobi (ps- if you’ve never heard of Tobi, you must check it out. you.will.die.). These are the perfect neutral heel to have in your closet. They’re super practical, but the studs also make them a bit edgy. They can be worn to dress up jeans and a tank or to add a bit of rock n roll to an otherwise girly dress. With the $58 version, you also won’t be worried about messing them up on a night out!

2. Chanel Espadrilles- I’m currently OBSESSED with Espadrilles, especially these Chanel beauties. But, spending over $500 on a pair of casual shoes is kind of insane, especially since they’re white linen and I would probably dirty them the first time I wore them. These Kendall & Kylie for Madden Girl’s are a great alternative. Not only are they like a tenth of the price, but the synthetic leather material will definitely hold up better through wear and tear. The black and white is still a timelessly classic look!

3. Birkenstock Arizonas- So, Birkenstocks may not exactly be outrageously priced. But, they have been going in and out of style my entire life, most of that time spent out. I never think it’s a great idea to spend a ton of cash on a trendy item, especially when there is another option! These Sam & Libby for Target sandals are almost identical to Birks, BUT they also have gold studs!! I mean seriously, you had me at gold. Priced originally at $29.99 they’re currently on sale for $22.49, so when they go out of style again in a few months, you won’t be hating yourself for spending over a hundred bucks. Plus, if you’re like me and have the Target Red card you also save another 5%!! Yes, that’s totally what I tell myself every time I walk out of Target after spending $300 on bathing suits, office supplies and dog toys- “at least I saved 5%”

I would LOVE to hear what y’all think of my REAL vs STEAL post and if YOU have any items you’re looking for a less expensive alternative to!! Everyone have a happy and safe weekend!! XOXO

 

Shopping on Wheels

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Last night I spent a fun night with fellow bloggers and Charleston fashionistas at an amazing event/fashion show at Republic Garden & Lounge. It was put on by Rolling Rack Boutique, a mobile shopping truck, named Rita to be specific.  Now, while this concept has been in California for years, it had yet to hit the coast of Charleston until now! The truck is taken to local events, concerts and even popular brunch spots {Shelter, every Sunday, ladies}. You can also privately rent Rita to come to your party or event. What a fun girl’s night, right?! Perfect for birthday parties, bachelorettes, or even just a ladies night in! Not only does Rolling Rack stock the hottest styles at fabulous prices with everything from jewelry to sweet little dresses and tops to OMG so sexy jumpsuits, but on the inside Rita is absolutely the cutest thing you’ve ever seen! They have done a fabulous job getting this truck to look just like a cute boutique, except this one can come to YOU! Unfortunately, this was my first encounter with Rolling Rack Boutique so I wasn’t able to wear one of their pieces to the event. However, I did do some shopping and cannot wait to share my new threads with y’all! Since this was a fun, Summer event I wanted to keep my attire fairly casual but with some great summery colors! This floral top is so girly and the colors just pop! It’s also super light and airy- perfect for this hot, humid Charleston weather. I wore it with the classic Summer staple, white skinny jeans, which I of course did a little roll at the bottom. My Rockstuds were a perfect shoe pairing to add a little sass to this sweet outfit. Just the right amount of rock-n-roll to add to the pretty florals. I couldn’t go without throwing on a few baubles that complimented the colors in my top just right! For a bag, I carried my go-to classy white quilted cross body that goes fabulous with any outfit! This is an easy outfit to recreate with a floral top in bright colors, white skinnies and a pair of pumps {studs optional, but amazing}.

Top- Trés Carmen Boutique > (similar here)  / Pants- Vigoss / Shoes- Valentino from Saks Fifth Avenue  / Bangles – Bourbon and Boweties from Trés Carmen Boutique / Cuff Bracelet- Lisa Kerns / Bag- Kate Spade from Gwynn’s > (similar here)

 

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