Orange Juice, ETC

The blog of Elias & Theresa Carlson

Tag: Christmas

Brown Paper Packages

Gift wrap 4

We are leaving on Sunday for our Christmas adventures so I have now moved on from the shopping stage to the wrapping stage of gift giving. For the most part I stick with “brown paper packages tied up with string” – birthday, wedding, Christmas… with the right ribbon, brown paper works for everything and keeping wrapping paper stocked is pretty simple.

I’m pretty sure I started using brown paper because my mom used it for Christmas gift wrapping at some point. I once described my mom’s file cabinet to a friend and she said (I paraphrase) “Your mom was ‘pinning’ in her file cabinet before the internet”. Its true. She had a file for vacation spots, a file for Christmas decorations, a file for clothes she wanted to make. You name it, she had a file full of pages torn out of magazines and quick sketches she made on the back of a check balance sheet. I would bet that one of them was a picture of a gift wrapped in brown paper.

As it turns out brown paper is not only easy, its classic. Here are some fun variations on brown paper I found on the new Pinterest if you are in need of some wrapping inspiration. Best of luck as you finish your shopping and get your packages ready for Christmas!

Sources listed left to right, top to bottom:

Thrift Style: Holiday

Thrift-Style-Holiday

With all of the parties and get-togethers that happen around this time of year I thought it could be helpful to show that you don’t need to spend a million bucks to look great this holiday season. With a few exceptions, most of the items in this post have been thrifted. Shoes and accessories are exceptions for the most part but in each outfit, at least the shining star was a thrifted piece.

I have included prices on the thrifted items but it is fair to mention that some of these prices are estimates as it has been years since I purchased them. However, I am confident that my memory is within a few dollars of the price I actually paid.

This post was so much fun to style and shoot with Elias. In the end I found that the perfect holiday outfit is great, but what you REALLY need is a good tube of red lipstick (Mine is MAC – Ruby Woo)! I hope you enjoy and get out there to find an amazing deal for yourself!

Blue-Skirt-2
Blue Skirt $5: Purchased years ago at Bellevue LifeSpring Thrift Shop. I hemmed it up as it was below the knee when I bought it, making it the perfect little party skirt.

Styled with a silk tank purchased for $19 from the Nordstrom Rack and Irregular Choice heels from the sale section at Anthropologie.

Outfit Total:
$24 without shoes, under $100 with shoes.

Blue skirt also styled here.

Chambray-2

DIY Fur Collar $5: This outfit is almost entirely thrifted but the star of the show is the fur collar. A few years ago I did a DIY adding a ribbon to the fur collar I found at a thrift store (find the DIY here). This collar can be added to almost anything for an instant outfit upgrade!

The Pendleton denim shirt was purchased at Crossroads Trading Co. in Silver Lake for $15 and the skirt was another below the knee length find from Bellevue LifeSpring Thrift Shop for $5 that I hemmed. The shoes are from Target and the tights are Jcrew Factory.

Outfit Total: $25 without shoes, right about $50 with shoes and tights.

Flannel-2

Buffalo Plaid Flannel $1: The Flannel was a real steal of a deal, but my favorite part of this outfit is actually the boots. The last time I was in New York, we stopped into the Buffalo Exchange in Chelsea where I found these brand new Frye Boots for $99. I couldn’t find an exact match to these boots but after a quick comparison I would say that they were originally $300 to $500. The best part (aside from the awesome reptile texture) was the sticker on the sole of one boot that said “Vogue Closet”. They may have never actually been pulled for a photo shoot but it’s fun to think that they lived at Vogue before I took them home.

The rest of the outfit is also thrifted. The jeans were $5, again from Bellevue Lifespring, and the sweater was $6 form Value Village in Ballard, Seattle.

Outfit Total: $13 without boots boots, $113 with boots.

Flower-Tank-2

Floral Tank $3: The floral tank is Nicole Miller and you cannot tell from the photo but it is actually a lightweight silk sweater material. I was thrilled to find such a great deal at Goodwill in the U-District, Seattle. The skirt was around $4 from Value Village in Ballard. Skirts similar to this are a dime a dozen, I also have one in Navy Blue. The heels were purchased full price several years ago, a perfect style by Sechelles.

Outfit Total: $7 without shoes, right about $107 with shoes.

Red-top-2

Red Blouse $1: As with the Buffalo Plaid above, this blouse was found at God’s Provision Thrift Shop (that name always cracks me up!) in Priest River, Idaho. The black jeans were also a thrift find, $6 from St. Vincent De Paul here in Long Beach. The leopard flats are old Zara, purchased on Sale for $29.

Outfit Total: $7 without shoes, $35 with shoes.

Green-Dress-2

Green Dress $1:
God’s Provision wins again! This dress was actually less than a dollar since they were having a bag sale and you could purchase a grocery bag full for $1, so we are talking small change on this one. The beautiful plaid scarf is borrowed from my sister (a piece of wool with finished edges courtesy of Mom), the tights are from Gap, and the boots (Madewell) were a gift.

Outfit Total:
About $10, minus the boots and scarf.

Leather-2

Leather Skirt $12: This outfit is a bit of a stretch on the festive front but if you are going for an understated nod to red this works, and I just love the leather skirt. Purchased for $12 at Value Village in Ballard, it was the find of the year when I picked this up.

The necklace kind of steals the show here, I found it at a flea market in New york for $25. It is one of my favorites. The tank is H&M, and the heels are Target.

Outfit Total: Around $45 without shoes, around $75 total.

Leather skirt also styled here.

Red-Sweater-2

Red Cardigan $6: There is nothing really special about this outfit except that it is entirely thrifted, and it seems like a good choice for game night with friends. The cardigan is from the Ballard Value Village, the jeans were $5 from Bellevue LifeSpring (seen above), and the flannel was around  $5 from the Goodwill on Capitol Hill (seattle).

The flats were thrown into the same $1 bag as the green dress from God’s Provision, so again we are talking small change.

Outfit Total:
Under $20, shoes and all.

Black-Dress-2

Black Dress $15: I got this dress in Seattle at a vintage shop called Red Light. It fit great but had a pretty significant tear up the slit that I was certain I could repair. Only about two years later I finally fixed the slit and it is good as new!

The gold shoes are the same style as the Seychelles seen above purchased on clearance at DSW for $15, I handmade the necklace myself.

Outfit Total: $30, shoes and all.

Lace-Top-2

Lace Tee $2: This shirt is HUGE (found at Value Village, Ballard)! I’m really not even sure why I tried it on or why I was even in that section… But one thing I have learned about thrift shopping is that you cant be afraid to try something on. If it has a good texture, a fun color, interesting trim, its worth trying on. Sometimes it looks just as bad on the body as it does on the hanger but I have been pleasantly surprised on more than one occasion.

The jeans are old J.Crew and the heels are Target.

Outfit Total: Under $100

Red-Dress-2

Red Dress $4: This dress is a great example of something that is scary on the hanger but completely lovely on the body. It fell past the knee when I purchased it but a quick hem made all the difference. What you can’t see here is the open back, which is amazing. This is one of my favorite thrift purchases, I have worn it over and over.

Again, the shoes are from Target (clearly I really like these suede shoes. They are so comfortable!).

Outfit Total: Right about $35.

Red dress also styled here.

Holiday Gift Guide: Children

Childrens gift guide

Last but not least, the kid’s gift guide. I think shopping for kids is so much fun even though I have no children of my own. This is probably the area where you need the least help coming up with ideas but maybe you will find a couple here that you hadn’t though of. And yes, I’d take most of the items in this list as well.

Wooden Skwish $16Baby Moccasins $19.95Arctic Bear Blanket $145 Kitty Pouch $26Geometric Band-Aids $5Not Tired Tee $25.95Cheetah Necklace $26Puffin Classic Books $16Stacking Crayons $10Plush Dino $22.50 Flannel Tie $12The Not So Bald Bat $14Knitted Fox Tail $42 Floral Tee $25Construction Blocks $69 Plush Lemon $52 Spherical Music Box $90Super Hero Hat $22

Holiday Gift Guide: Women

Womens gift guide

Here are some of my favorite gift ideas for women this holiday season. I always try to select a variety of gifts that would appeal to a wide age range but the end result is usually just a wishlist for myself! I hope it is helpful as you search for the perfect gift for the women in your life, and maybe something for yourself… Happy shopping!

Left to right, top to bottom. For the most part.

Golden State Sweatshirt $58Mittens $35Marble iphone Case $28 Blanket Scarf $65Avocado Planter $22Moon and Star Earrings $48Cactus Tote $95Marbled Mug $40Bobbi Pins $10Camp Staff Tee $48Quartz Necklace $77.31Pom Pom Hat $39.50Jansport Backpack $60Temporary Tattoos $5Resin Ring $58.82 (similar) • Diamond Box $15 Baggu Zip Pouch $8Vans Slip On $55

Merry and Bright

Its officialy the holiday season and that means Christmas music (weather you like it or not)! I have compiled a playlist of our favorite Christmas albums that we will be playing this season and wanted to share it with you. What am I missing? I would love to hear your favorites!

As with many of my playlists, I think its best if you play it on shuffle.

Gift Guide: Men

Men's-Gift-Guide

Time for the men’s guide! I don’t know about you but I think shopping for guys can be tough. Since I married into a family full of them, I am always glad for some new gift ideas. Here are some favorites that Elias and I came up with.

Coffee Chart $28 * National Parks Atlas $32 * Bottle Opener $60 * Sweater $128 * Egg Cup $18.91 * Hiking Boots $100 * Pocket Knife $35 * Brooklyn T shirt $25 * Instagram Projector $34.98 * Cocktail Shaker $36 * Notebook $12 * Dopp Kit $25

Gift Guide: Ladies

Women's-Gift-Guide

Have you finished your shopping? If you plan to make any of your purchases online, you don’t have much more time! Hopefully this will help you out a bit if you are still searching for the perfect gift for your sister, mother, best friend, girl friend, etc.

Plaid Shirt $79.50 * Brass Cuff $108 * Fingerless Gloves $28 * Leather Pouch $20 * Holiday Stamp $39 * Notebook $14.79 * Best Tee Ever $15 * Moccasins $39.95 * Hand Creme $14 * Pig Book Ends $29.95 * Fold-over Clutch $66

Men’s gift guide coming tomorrow!

Merry Little Christmas

We woke up bright and early this morning and headed towards the snow. We will be spending NINE WHOLE days(!) in Idaho to celebrate the holidays with my family.

Since we are missing Christmas day with the Carlsons this year, we celebrated last night at Elias’ parents house. We had a delicious dinner, gifts, family, and a skype date with Joseph who is stuck in sunny California.

We are so blessed to be loved by such incredible family on both sides. We wish you the same this season, Merry Christmas.