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weekend guide

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Weekending Outdoors: Picnic Pointers

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This post is in partnership with Bravazzi, but all opinions are my own.

Each year I like to share some picnic scenes to help you get inspired to get outdoors! The weather is PERFECT right now, so it’s a good time to soak up the sunshine before the mosquitos set up shop.  If you live in Charleston, I’ve included some upcoming outdoor events for you to know about. If not, I’ll share a few fab picnic ideas so you can make your own fun outdoor soirée!

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1. Easy to Transport Libations

Bravazzi is a hard Italian soda (4.2% ABV) that comes in 4 flavors- the blood orange is my fave! Gluten free is a must for me, and it’s also all natural without icky artificial additives (it’s made with 100% fruit juices).  There’s a store locator on Bravazzi.com if you want to find it in your area, and if you’re in Cherleston you can find it at Harris Teeter. Wouldn’t it be perfect for a boat day, too?!

2. Picnic Supplies

I love the look of picnic baskets, but I find most of them to be pretty cumbersome to schlep across a park. Opt for an insulated cooler or small basket like this one I found at a vintage market. To keep clean up simple, stick with paper products & disposable utensils or finger foods. For a picnic blanket, I always stick with my old faithful, a Turkish towel of course!

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3. Get a Little Fresh

Picking up some fresh flowers from the grocery store make your simple sunshine-soaking feel a little more fancy. Treating your picnic set up like a real table scape makes you want to enjoy the moment and linger a little longer.  Bring along some fresh fruit, and it will make your beverages feel like that much more of a treat!

If you’re local to Charleston or visiting this spring, below are some upcoming outdoor events for you to know about.  Or if you want to do a DIY picnic, be sure to check out Hampton Park, Allan Park, Colonial Lake, or Brittlebank Park!

Charleston Mimosa Festival | March 30

High Water Festival | April 13-14

Charleston Beer Fest | May 18

Spoleto Festival | May 24-June 9

Follow along on Instagram (@charlestonweekender) for more Charleston tips and inspiration to help you make every day feel more like the weekend!

all images by Kim Graham Photo

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Weekending at Home: 5 Ideas for a Date Night In

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I was quite inspired by my recent Palm Springs stay at the Wexler Fishbowl in Sunmor Estates to bring you some fun ideas for a “date night in”. When we go to Palm Springs and stay at an ACME vacation rental like this, we typically want to stay home as much as possible! Heck, we stay at home as much as possible back home in Charleston, too, but in mid century Palm Springs homes the surroundings are especially dreamy for an at home date night. Some of you gave me your fabulous date night in ideas on this Instagram post, so thank you for the brilliant inspiration! Read on if your date nights have become a little mundane, and know we’re right there with you with far too many Netflix & takeout-filled evenings.

Note: this post is partially in partnership with ACME House Company, but all opinions are my own. The post also contains some affiliate links that earn me a small commission and help keep this blog up and running.

1. Say “Cheese”!

Personally, I find it fun to take photos or videos for no good reason at all! Capturing memories is always a good idea, especially at home since that’s where you likely spend most of your time together. Take turns taking pictures of each other in your element (i.e. I could snap Jonny in the kitchen and he might capture me reading a book in my swing chair). Or perhaps you could interview each other and record that on video (i.e. share 5 things you like about the other person or asking each other about your dreams for the future). We made a private Instagram account that we hope to share with our kids one day, so that’s a great place for these pictures and videos to live!

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2. Get Creative in the Kitchen

Likely one of you does most of the cooking, and thank the Lord that’s my husband in our relationship! The kitchen isn’t a place I enjoy very much if I’m being honest, but there are plenty of ways you can both have fun in the kitchen: find a new recipe to bake and take turn adding ingredients, be your own mixologist with whatever ingredients you have on hand for craft cocktails, or break out one of those wedding registry items you never use (I’m looking at YOU, pasta maker & Kitchen Aid!).

3. Start Your Own Book Club or Game Night for Two

Head to your local bookstore and pick a book together- it could be an old classic, something set in your city, or a book on relationships (I highly recommend the 5 Love Languages!). I loved this idea from the owner of ACME’s Midcentury Deluxe: Take turns reading out loud to each other for 30 minutes each, then individually progress to your agreed upon point by the next read-aloud meeting. You can take a few minutes to discuss something new you learned, or wait until you’re finished the whole thing and chat about the book’s discussion questions.

If friendly competition sounds more exciting, hit the Target aisles or Amazon and find a new game to play, and I bet you have friends or neighbors to swap with. It could be a trivia game, board game, or card game (but I find most card games to be boring with just two people). Heck- you can turn your game into a strip version if you want (I won’t tell you who recommended that one!). Get it on the calendar, and don’t cancel!

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4. Make a Playlist Together

It seems that mix tapes are a thing of the past, so the updated version of that is creating an online playlist! We use Spotify, so it could be fun to take turns adding songs to the list and then listening to it together. Just sitting in each other’s company with background music & no TV on can be so refreshing, and you might even wind up having a living room dance party!

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5. Change Your Scenery

When we’re at home together, we often tend to turn to couch potatoes! While staying at the “Fishbowl”, we were still able to relax while avoiding the couch. Take your cocktails outdoors if you have a fire pit or porch, eat at the dinner table or create a living room picnic, or go for an evening stroll. Mixing up your surroundings can definitely spice things up in your relationship!



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Each Palm Springs trip we’ve been on has given us time to reconnect and made us a lot closer, largely due to the fact we aren’t spending as much time in front of our screens. I hope you’ll treat yourself to a little Palm Springs getaway with your love, too! Use code WeekenderLove to get $100-200 off your stay at any ACME property when you book it in 2018 (valid for any 2018/2019 stay). Click HERE to browse/book (and to see which home I’m dreaming of staying at during my next visit)!

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All images are c/o Nathan Cox Studios for ACME House Company


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Best CHS Bachelorette Weekend Ideas

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One of the questions I get DM'd about the most on Instagram is, "What should I do for my bachelorette party in Charleston?"  I've given this one a LOT of thought, so I have a great round-up of ideas that I think you and your girls will love.  Also be sure to get in touch if you want to set up a private sip & shop or workshop at our store, Cannonborough Collective!  

all images c/o Sean Money & Elizabeth Fey


Enjoy a Group Activity

One of the best ways to really create some memories with your bride tribe is with a fun group activity. You can find lots of workshops offered around town, or create your own private event or spa day!  Below are a few of my faves:

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Group Workouts

Bachelorette Yoga with Serenity Tree Yoga

Private Barre Class at Barre South

Pamper Yourselves!

Dry Bar for blow outs or braids

Mylk Bar for Manis/Pedis (cutest nail salon for a group!)

Learn a Little

Flower Crown Class by Petaloso

Candle Making Class at Candlefish

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Wine & Dine

There are SO many restaurants to choose from in this foodie haven of ours!  Here are my recommendations for the best restaurants to accommodate larger groups.  

Harold's Cabin // Rarebit // Miller's All Day // The Watch

Elevé at The Grand Bohemian // Butcher & Bee // Lewis BBQ

CHS bag available at  Cannonborough Collective  

CHS bag available at Cannonborough Collective 

Shop 'Til You Drop

There are SO many adorable shops around town. You and your best gals will be in Instagram heaven at any of the following spots.  I linked to their Instagram accounts so you can see what I mean ;)

Cannonborough Collective // Toss Designs // The Skinny Dip (get some frosé while you shop!)

Candy Shop Vintage // Mac & Murphy // Candlefish


Don't Forget the BALLOONS!

Call ahead at Cannonborough Collective to line up a balloon pick-up, or shop below for some cute options you can fill yourself with air (the following links are affiliate links which will earn me a small commission). 

Letters for banner (gold or rose gold) // Jumbo Letters // Jumbo Ring // Hot Pink DIY Balloon Garland, Rose Gold DIY Garland // (* do yourself a favor and buy this pump! It makes balloon garland life a breeze)


-Shop This Post-

Andrea, Cayleigh & I have on a floral print that comes in several styles: High Rise Midi, High Rise Cut Out, Matching Bra // The twins' High Rise Track Leggings // Escape bag // Kelsey's Top & Bra


-Photo Credits-

Images by Sean Money + Elizabeth Fey // Yoga led by Melora of Serenity Tree Yoga // Flower crowns by Petaloso // Event Coordination: @CharlestonShopCurator // Yoga apparel gifted by Onzie // Pictured bloggers: @KC_Doubletake, @ThePetalReport, @KelseyJHill

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5 Hotels for the Design Lover

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This post is in partnership with Lark Hotels,but all opinions are mine.

If you're looking to do some US travel where you'd like to relax without breaking the bank, I highly recommend Lark Hotels!   I'm working my way through visiting as many Larks as I can- I just love their colorful vibes, the always relaxing atmosphere, the exceptional breakfast, and friendly staff.  I can only vouch for The Attwater, Summercamp Hotel, & the Whitehall Inn, but I'm dying to check out the rest of the Larks on this list!

1. Whitehall Inn in Camden, Maine

See more from my recent stay on Instagram!

2. Summercamp Hotel in Martha's Vineyard

Find more from our Summercamp visit here

Find more from our Summercamp visit here

3. The Attwater in Newport, RI

4. Field Guide in Stowe, Vermont

5. 21 Broad in Nantucket, MA

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I recently read an inspiring interview with the interior designer behind all of these fabulous hotels, (Rachel Reider).  She talked about working with local artisans in each locale to help develop a "sense of place". That is exactly the term that can make me totally fall in love with a hotel or restaurant, so I'm currently working toward decorating our new home with that same concept in mind.  Why not give each room a fun sense of place with it's own style that makes you happy? I hope you found these locations to be as inspiring as I did, and be sure to follow along on Instagram for more Weekender Travels.

All images c/o Lark Hotels 

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The Instagrammer's Guide to San Francisco: 10 Photo Worthy Stops

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San Francisco was definitely one of my favorite places to visit in the last few months!  There are so many great cafes, restaurants, and shops that I checked out when I was there celebrating my mom's 70th birthday.  I never got around to sharing some of our favorites. I hope you enjoy these spots as much as we did!

-Good Eats-

1. Le Marais Bakery

You'll love this adorable gem; an authentic Parisian menu and bright and sunny surroundings? Yes, please!

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You might want to go for the cute decor alone, and you'll definitely want to stay for the chocolate mousse that's served from a gold pineapple! 

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3. Mr. Holmes Bakeshop

A place that's so nice, we at there TWICE!  One cronut was just not enough. They have different flavors every day and we just loved everything we tried! 

4. Jane Cafe

This was a great spot if you want to eat somewhere with plenty of whole foods on the menu for breakfast or lunch. We ate at the Fillmore location, which had other cute nearby shops (like Saje who has awesome essential oils), and you can go to the Larkin St. location if you want to see their cool wall. 

-Fun Sights-

5. Lombard Street (World's Crookedest Street)

I recommend you try to walk AND drive on this street; both are a fun and different experience. If you drive (or ask your Uber driver to take you) down this street, you really understand where it got it's name.  You don't take the same winding route if you walk, but you get to enjoy taking in the awesome houses along the way.  This blue one is my favorite!

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6.  Fisherman's Wharf

This is the area where you can check out The Buena Vista for their famous Irish coffees, find the best trolleys, and get catch great views of the Golden Gate Bridge.  You're close to Ghirardelli Square, and not terribly far from Pier 39 to check out the seals.  All in all this is a great part of town to make sure you see while you're here!  We took a trolley from Lombard Street down to the bottom of the hill to Fisherman's Wharf and it was lots of fun!

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7. The Painted Ladies

These are the Full House houses- sort of... these houses ARE seen in the opening credits, but the actual Tanner house that is shown when zoomed in is in another location.  Regardless, this is a really pretty park (Alamo Park) where you might stumble upon a food truck while you take in the great 360 views.

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8. Golden Gate Park

This place is giant, so I would hone in on one or two areas of the expansive park.  My favorite is definitely the Japanese tea garden!

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-Daytripping-

The next few spots are really just for you folks you decide to rent a car, which I highly recommend so you don't miss these great places! 

9. Muir Woods/Sausalito

The Muir Woods National Forest was quite a sight to see!  Take the advice from another post I found and get there early; we definitely had to circle around for around 15-20 minutes to try to get a parking spot.  On the way home we stopped off in Sausalito.  Had it not been a rainy day we would have loved to explore more of this seaside town.  It had the flavor of a European village by the sea!

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10. Half Moon Bay (The Ritz Carlton)

If you remember the American Pie movies, you might recognize this setting from American Wedding.  If I didn't know any better I might think I was in Ireland!  I love sitting by their fire pits while taking the breathtaking Pacific Ocean views, and we loved our meal at the restaurant as well.  This is a great short day trip to give you a perfect dose of the scenic Pacific Coast Highway. 

image c/o Ritz Carlton

image c/o Ritz Carlton

-Bonus Spots-

If either of these colorful pop up exhibits is still in town, check out The Color Factory and/or the Museum of Ice Cream.  The MOIC currently has an exhibit in Miami & I'm not sure about The Color Factory.  You can sign up on their websites to stay in the loop!

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