Styling the Bump for the Holidays

Wives tales about pregnancy run rampant. Certain food cravings can determine the sex. If you’re having a girl you’re supposed to carry wider, less out front. Boys make you glow, girls “suck the life out of you.” The list goes on and on and on. Unsurprisingly, I paid very little attention to any of these stories until they were suddenly relevant. One tale that appears to be true, at least for me, is that first pregnancies take a very long time to “pop.” It wasn’t until just the last few weeks that my bump made its appearance, but now that it has, it’s growing quickly and it’s forcing me to have to rethink my holiday wardrobe. I’m not at the point where I’m ready to overly accentuate my new curves, so my secret weapon is going to be all things oversized!

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While I don’t usually wear a lot of pastels, an understated neutral palette is feeling so fresh this season. I have a feeling I’m going to be living in this uber cozy Equipment cashmere sweater that I scored at Nordstrom Rack all winter long.

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I’m also loving a return to classic accessories. Sure, rings on every finger and piles of jumbo necklaces are fun, but not so practical when trying to enjoy a nice Thanksgiving meal. It all kinda gets in the way! In this case, an understatement can make quite a statement, don’t you think? I picked up a sweet and simple pearl & chain necklace at the Rack too. I would toss it on with a tee just as quickly as I would a dressier look. And I couldn’t help but think it would make a great holiday gift for my sister or my bestie!

When I’m sticking to the basics, I do like to add in a few unexpected moments – in this case with shapes. I love my neoprene cocoon coat, a crazy good find at Nordstrom from a few years back. It adds a dramatic silhouette.

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And I swear no matter what size I get to, I’m not going to give up my statement shoes! They are the perfect way to kick classic pieces up a notch for the holiday season. I’m going to keep my heels on regular rotation for as long as I possibly can!

The best part about this festive dressing strategy: it’s definitely friendly to big holiday meals! While I might be missing a speciality cocktail this year, I’m going to make up for it in pumpkin pie!

Happy Thanksgiving my dears!!

GET THE LOOK: SHOP HERE!

> Equipment Cashmere Sweater {similar}
> Pearl & Chain Necklace
> Statement Coat {similar}
> Comme des Garcons pant {similar}
> Walter Stieger booties {similar}

original photography for apartment 34 by aubrie pick 

This post is in partnership with Nordstrom Rack. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. Thanks for supporting parnterships we’re excited about and collaborations that help keep Apartment 34’s doors open!

How to Put Your Touch on Tailgating

It’s football season. Yay! We love us a competitive friendly sport and a good excuse to get friends together on a Sunday afternoon. But what happens when you don’t have tickets to the big game nor a backyard to BBQ {or you’re averse to freezing temperatures like me}?? You put together an amazing tailgate-inspired spread, indoors, of course! But this is no ordinary tailgate. We partnered with Smirnoff ICE to create our dream football watching party. So we’re ditching nachos for kale chips, upping the ante with some delicious cocktails {sorry, I just don’t do beer!}, and we’ve said so long to the same ole football paraphernalia for super chic modern party accessories. While hanging out in the parking lot with hot dogs sizzling is great fun, we promise hanging at home- a quieter approach to the ol’ tailgate madness- is just as entertaining- especially when it looks like this!

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To live out our ultimate football party, we teamed up with Jesi Haack Design who brought in party essentials that one might not immediately think of when talkin’ football. Just as impactful as a wedding or New Year’s Eve shindig, adding a backdrop to your party decor can have the same impact for game day. So don’t forget it! Ours is made out of different ribbons and paper streamers for fun texture and depth that we swear isn’t difficult to make on your own -even if it does look fancy! Best part is, make one in a neutral color palette and use it over and over again! We also added subtle hints at “pig skin” to our party buffet tablescape with leather accents and “football” shaped himmels in a glam bronze. Oh and don’t forget the flowers for a nice feminine factor! We’re taking football back from the boys with this party.

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Putting touchdown pieces in your place doesn’t require you to Go. All. The. Waayyyyy. You can totally score in the hostess department without bringing in 100 yards of astro turf. In fact, we’re all about the simple nods to the game that create a sophisticated yet fun atmosphere. For instance, ditch paper napkins and instead write up tricky football trivia on linen squares. Take turns quizzing friends in what we like to call, Cocktail Napkin Trivia! Not only is it a light hearted way to get excited about the game, they’re also act as a cute place to set your drink! On your serving platters, draft up “plays” in simple “x” and “o” form – we made ours on a slate platter with a chalk pen!

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Another easy DIY? Take blue masking tape and a marker and channel your ol’ varsity jacket. Jazz up paper bags with numbers and stripes then serve kale chips, popcorn, trail mix- whatever your snacking heart desires. Speaking of snacks, we have three foul-proof munchies that are healthy and delicious!

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Foul Proof Snacks:
– Kale chips {in cute paper bags, of course!}
– Roasted Beets Crostini with Burrata and mint
– Delicata Squash Rings with Ricotta, olive oil, thyme

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But it wouldn’t be a party without some tasty cocktails, would it?! You know we always have you covered. We love the idea of switching up the typical game-day booze selection with a fancier, feel good cocktail. So we put a grown-up twist on a tailgate staple: Smirnoff Ice! We created original cocktail recipes your guests can easily mix up themselves. We served ours in vintage crystal goblets {in opposing team colors, duh!} to really up the ante. Here are two recipes – one sweet and one tart – that’ll get the good times rollin’!

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Lemon Tart Touchdown 

1oz fresh Meyer lemon juice
1/2 oz simple syrup
1 oz orange vanilla liquor
8oz Smirnoff ICE Original

Add fresh Meyer lemon juice and all ingredients into a shaker with ice. Shake. Strain into a glass with ice. Use Meyer lemon peel for garnish.

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Pass The Peach Bellini

6 oz Smirnoff ICE Peach Bellini
4oz champagne
2 dashes bitters

Pour Smirnoff ICE Peach Bellini into a glass. Top with champagne. Add 2 dashes of bitters. Garnish with thyme sprig.

So next time you want to have a mellow football party at home, sans chewed up gum on your seats and sticky arena floors {we all need a break from the madness sometimes!}, keep these simple plays in mind. They are a sure win- touchdown!!

original photography for apartment 34 by Aubrie Pick // styling + food by Jesi Haack Design // glassware c/o Frances Lane // shot on location at LUX-SF 

This is a sponsored post by Smirnoff ICE.  All reviews/opinions expressed in this post are unbiased & based on my personal view. Drink responsibly.

Add Sparkle to Your Holiday Season with This Timeless Cuff

If there is ONE style rule we strongly encourage, it is that every woman should have a small collection of fine jewelry. Starting with a bracelet {since rings are a bit more personal and earrings get lost under pretty locks!}, these pieces should be special, crafted with precision and care, and be so simple and everlasting that she never wants to nor has to take it off.

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That’s exactly where Vrai and Oro comes in. A newly launched jewelry line run by two beautiful business savvy ladies, has found a way to offer fine jewelry that will last a lifetime, but doesn’t cost the arm you plan to wear it on! Vrai and Oro has eliminated the markups, bringing delicate pieces made of the highest quality materials {read gold & diamonds!} that can be worn everyday. So when we got the opportunity to dream up the most exquisite piece in our holiday boutique with a company we already own pieces from {and whom we’ve gushed over all year long!}, we took the chance to truly came up with something that we ourselves, would never, ever take off! And here she is:

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This amazing cuff is solid 14k yellow gold. That’s right, solid gold, people. This price for solid gold is unheard of! We really wanted a cuff that wouldn’t get in the way, so it’s nice and thin and hugs around the wrist just right. The tapered ends give it that slightly edgy touch while still staying true to its classic roots. And because we wanted to make you feel extra special while wearing it, we added two brilliant cut .03ct diamonds on either end. Just the right amount of subtle holiday sparkle!

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We are ob-sessed with this cuff. We worked with Vrai and Oro to get it just perfect- going through a couple of different steps of brainstorming and revision- really making the final piece not only beautiful, but timeless. We hope some of you lucky ladies will be able to don this truly remarkable gift on your wrist this holiday season! We’d love to see that it’s made someone’s smile a little brighter!

Remember, it’s an exclusive piece available in our shop here and only through the holidays! So we say, this Christmas treat yourself to something extra special. Or better yet, send the link to your husband/boyfriend/lover and remind him or her that EVERY woman deserves a little something sparkly to help ring in the new year!

images c/o Vrai and Oro // image 3 original photography for apartment 34 by Aubrie Pick