Friday Finds 12/29/2017

Ok wow the sales never seem to stop. I've been trying to limit myself to only buying things I really need now (I won't let all those sales suck me in!) but think I am officially addicted to Amazon Prime. I think the UPS truck shows up at my house nearly every day... 

One of my favorite recent Amazon purchases is this travel neck pillow. I've never had one before because I didn't want to carry it around with me, but this one is inflatable so it doesn't take up much room when you're not using it. I'm definitely going to get a lot of use out of this in 2018 (lots of exciting trips to look forward to)! 

I also tried out these CeraVe makeup remover wipes this week. Unpoular opinion, but I hate the Neutrogena makeup wipes and I swore by the CVS brand ones. All of my skincare products are CeraVe and didn't know they made makeup remover wipes and am already obsessed.

In the book department, I flew through Grace, Not Perfection by Emily Ley. I just now got around to reading it because I am a loyal Day Designer gal, so I wasn't keeping up with the Simplified brand as much. I picked it up on sale at Target and read it in two sittings. I just soaked up every word Emily wrote and feel so ready to tackle 2018 now.

I just released my 2017 reader survey and would love to hear your thoughts on Gimme Glamour and what you would like to see on the blog in the upcoming year. I would greatly appreciate if you took the time to fill out this quick survey to help me curate content that y'all want to see! Thanks!

Take the survey here!

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Winter Rush Outfit Inspiration

Recruitment is approaching quickly for those of you who go to schools that have rush during the winter. I remember being at a complete loss for what to wear last year. Most blog posts and YouTube videos about recruitment are geared more towards fall recruitment where it's warm enough to wear shorts and sundresses. Luckily it's not too cold in NC so I could get away with wearing a dress last year and not freeze walking in between rounds. I remember being so stressed out about what to wear, but I truly don't think it makes much of a difference, just as long as you feel like yourself in what you're wearing. I didn't buy anything new or fancy, I just wore things I wear on the daily.  Of course, what you wear isn't the most important part of sorority recruitment, it's the conversations you have with the girls in each house. Choose something you feel comfortable and confident in because that will help you to be your best and truest self throughout the process!

I was also so worried about what to keep in my bag with me throughout the day. My top three must haves are mints, chapstick, and water (and some slippers if you're wearing heels)!

Every school does recruitment a little differently, so this is based on how Elon does winter recruitment. For the first two days we are encouraged to wear something we would wear on a regular day. I still wanted to feel put together, so I went for a more dressy casual look. Day 3 was preference round and we were encouraged to wear something we would wear to a cocktail party with family. 
To see exactly what I wore during recruitment as a PNM last year, check out this blog post!

If you have any more specific questions about recruitment or sorority life let me know in the comments or shoot me an email, I am more than happy to answer any questions or write a blog post on a specific aspect of recruitment/greek life.

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Goal Setting For The New Year

Anyone else terrible at setting New Years resolutions? The only resolution I've ever actually followed through with is starting this blog! I had wanted to start one for so long but was worried about stepping out of my comfort zone so I told myself I would focus on this one resolution and it worked! I think part of the reason I never seem to follow through with resolutions is that I try to do everything at once. It's pretty hard to go from lounging around and eating sweets all day over the holidays to exercising 5 days a week, drinking 8 glasses of water every day, and adopting a new skincare routine. That would be pretty hard to keep up. 
I think the trick to having successful resolutions is to focus on one or two that are really important to you and carve out time to make those things happen. Even if you may think you don't have time to add another thing to your routine or take up another hobby, just cut out 15 minutes of time on social media or Netflix and spend that time on your resolution each day. If there are more than a few resolutions you had in mind, you can tackle those later in the year as your main few become part of your routine. I don't think resolutions are exclusive to the New Year, you can really start them at any time throughout the year!

I'm also just bad at setting goals in general. The front section of my Day Designer that's meant for setting goals and action items always remains empty each year. This year, I want to practice better goal setting and try to get specific. I've never done this before and want to see the impact it has on realizing my goals. 
I think my first New Years resolution is going to be setting better goals and acting on them. I'm always reading and listening to podcasts and writing out all kinds of ideas only to have them never leave my notebook. This year, I want to be able to be ambitious in achieving my goals (through a better plan) and be more conscious of how I spend my time and how that is affecting the realization of my goals. (I really don't think my busy schedule is helping that)! That brings me to my second resolution which is going to be clearing up my schedule a little bit. I love being busy and productive but there are definitely some things in my life I am not 100% passionate about and could cut out to give some time for other things I care about. I hate saying no, so my schedule seems to fill up pretty quickly during the course of the semester. Devoting my time to what's most important is something I tend to struggle with, especially when I end up scrolling through social media for an hour  or bopping to and from meetings and wonder where my time went. I always refer to this lesson when I need a reality check regarding how I spend my time.

Here are some resources to keep you on track with your resolutions:

What are your New Years resolutions? This is the year for starting something new because January 1 is on a Monday, how perfect!

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Gifts To Give Yourself This Year

Just when you think you can't do any more shopping this holiday season, stores announce their after-Christmas sales! These sales and deals are the perfect opportunity to utilize any gift cards you received for Christmas or to treat yourself after a stressful holiday season. I definitely tend to forget about gift cards that end up sitting in my wallet forever, so I've been trying to be better about making use of them. I think this is the best time to invest in something you will get a lot of use out of. One of my favorite items I included is the smart watch by Kate Spade. I love that it looks like a traditional watch but keeps track of your fitness and sleep like other smartwatches do!

Shop by clicking on the product in the graphic below or on the links below.

2018 Planner | Amazon Echo Dot | Scalloped Scarf

There are also tons of great sales going on now:

Banana Republic: 40% off regular items & 60% off sale items
Draper James: Extra 40% off sale items w/code SNOWFLAKE
J. Crew: 30% off sale styles
J. Crew Factory: Extra 60% off clearance w/code SIXTY
LOFT: 50% off everything w/code WRAPITUP
Nordstrom: Up tp 50% off
Tory Burch: 30% off sale styles w/code EXTRA30
Tuckernuck: 20% off sale styles w/code FINALSALE20
(The Tuckernuck sale is probably my favorite. So many great pieces discounted including a ton of Barbour! Shop below)

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Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas to all who celebrate! I hope today is filled with good food and good company for everyone. After mass, my parents and I are making crepes for breakfast and then just hanging out for the rest of the day. It seems like the past few days have revolved around baking and eating and that's pretty much what we will be doing all day tomorrow (healthy eating starts in 2018, right?). 
I truly can't believe it's already Christmas, even though the holiday season started so early with Thanksgiving falling so early on the calendar. As much as I love the holidays I think I will feel relieved for it to be over so that I can go to Target or the grocery store without having to compete for a spot in the parking lot or wait in line for half an hour to check out. I'm ready to relax and enjoy time with family today and prepare for the new year!

Have a very merry Christmas!
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Friday Finds 12/22/2017

I can't believe I've been home for over a week now! I've had a good balance between catching up on sleep and getting together with friends. Last night, my parents and I went to McAdenville, NC (aka Christmastown, USA) to see the holiday lights and then had dinner at Nellie's Southern Kitchen. I've been wanting to try out the restaurant ever since the Jonas Brothers' family opened the restaurant last year. I had the chicken and waffles and it did not disappoint.
I thought I would have more time to do some browsing online this week since I didn't have class, but I've been busy, busy, busy!! Shop the few things I've been looking at below:

  • Neiman Marcus is having an amazing deal on jewelry that never goes on sale and it ends at noon today (12/22)! They are offering a $25 gift card for each $100 spent and the deal includes brands like Michele watches. Definitely a deal to take advantage of if you're looking to invest in a piece of jewelry!
  • Lately I have been obsessed with cookie decorating videos on Instagram. They're kind of like the Tasty videos and are sped up to show a pro baker frosting a cookie and they keep popping up all over my discover page! They make the most intricate designs on just a little cookie and are so interesting to watch. My favorites are @thepaintedpastry!
  • I just started the show The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon Video after seeing Shannon of Prep Avenue rave about the show on her Instagram story. It's written by Amy Sherman-Palladino who wrote Gilmore Girls! It took me a few episodes to get into it and I'm definitely starting to like it. I'd love to hear your thoughts if any of you have watched it!

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Thank You Notes This Holiday Season

During the holiday season (and throughout the whole year) it is so important to express gratitude for any gift or help you have received. No matter how small the gift or action, a thank you note is always appreciated. Plus, now that most messages are sent via email it's exciting to receive a handwritten note in your mailbox! There are also so many beautiful stationary sets available now, and using fun stationary makes the note writing process even more exciting. 

I've been using a little formula when writing thank you notes to friends and family that makes it easier and less stressful (there's no delete button when you're using a pen)!

1. "Dear ____,"
Address who it is you are thanking. I always opt for 'Dear' but you can leave that out and just write their name followed by a comma to address them more casually.

2. "Thank you for ____"
Explicitly state what it is you are thanking them for.

3. Say why you are thankful for it and how you plan on using it.
Ensures the giver their gift or help is put to good use!

4. Thank them again and close the note.
For more personal notes to family or close friends, I always sign my notes "Love, Renee" and for less personal notes I typically sign them "Best, Renee" or "Sincerely, Renee"

To keep track of your gifts and who gave them to you, download this thank you note tracker for free.
If you want to perfect your letter writing skills, I definitely recommend the book, The Art of the Handwritten Note, that I got a few years ago.

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Fair Isle Turtleneck

This fair isle sweater from J. Crew is one of my favorite Black Friday finds from this year. I love the neutral colors and how warm and cozy it is! This is definitely the ultimate cozy sweater in my opinion and I think it would be perfect for those super chilly days. I wore my new winter parka that I mentioned in yesterday's post over the sweater for some added warmth (not that I need it today, the last two days it's been close to 70 degrees)! This exact sweater has limited quantities left but J. Crew has so many amazing fair isle sweaters this winter. Shop my favorites below!

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Transitioning Your Wardrobe Into Colder Weather

In North Carolina, I definitely don't need any heavy duty winter gear, so for those few cold weeks each year and trips to colder weather, I don't really need to invest in a Canada Goose or snow boots. In preparation for an upcoming trip to Europe, I've been stocking up on items that can be incorporated into my existing wardrobe that will keep me warm throughout my trip. These are the items I've purchased so far, but if any of y'all are from places where it gets pretty cold, I would love to hear your recommendations! 

Waterproof Down Coat 
I was searching high and low for a practical waterproof winter coat. I didn't want to spend too much because I knew I wouldn't get much use out of it in North Carolina after my trip. This North Face coat felt comparable to a Canada Goose to me but was half the price. This was the perfect jacket to invest in because it didn't break the bank but is such a high quality piece.

Wool Socks + Silk Liners
I have the fleece lined Bean Boots but they aren't the warmest when there's snow on the ground. I bought a pair of wool socks when I was at the L.L. Bean store in Chicago and ended up ordering 3 more after because they are so so warm (definitely an upgrade from the J. Crew trouser socks I typically wear). Additionally, adding the silk liners as a barrier between your feet and the wool socks keeps your feet dry and blister-free.

Fleece Lined Leggings
I know my jeans aren't going to cut it in the freezing weather, so I Amazon Primed a 3 pack of these fleece lined leggings to layer under my jeans. These ones are slick on the outside so you can pull your jeans on over them and are lined with a more furry material than traditional fleece making them so so soft!

Sherpa Shoe Insoles (for Bean Boots and for Hunter Boots)
Adding these to my Bean Boots and Hunter Boots really made them so much warmer and much more comfortable!

Sherpa Liner for Barbour
I love my Barbour but once the winter weather hits, it's not quite warm enough sometimes. Last year I invested in a sherpa liner that zips into my Barbour Beadnell jacket. The sherpa lining feels so cozy and luxe and really makes the jacket much warmer.

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LBD For The Holidays

I somehow didn't own a black dress until now (I guess I'm more of a navy gal) and I think this was the perfect one to add to my wardrobe. I love how subtle the ruffled detailing on the neckline is and that the sleeveless shift style can easily be transitioned from winter into other seasons. I dressed up this look with nice flats and a long coat but I think it could easily be dressed down with boots and a sweater!

This look is definitely one of my top options for what I will wear for Christmas this year (it's tied with this tartan dress)!    

Vineyard Vines is also offering free 2 day shipping on orders over $200 placed until tomorrow (12/19)! So if you are going to order a gift for someone or something to wear for Christmas, today is the day!

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Gift Guide For The Last Minute Shopper

Now that finals are over, I'm just starting to think about actually buying Christmas presents and feel way behind. I've been reading bloggers' gift guides all month but have yet to buy any gifts! If you're like me and are doing some last minute shopping online, today is the day to do it because today is the last day most online retailers will offer guaranteed shipping by Christmas! To go along with that, a lot of places are offering free shipping. All of the items I have listed below are available on Amazon Prime or have shipping guaranteed by Christmas! 
Happy Shopping!

Red Pom Pom Hat- Classic hat that is stylish and useful for anyone living where it gets cold! (and it's on sale for $8!)

Bluetooth Shower Speaker- I got one of these on Amazon for just $10 and brought it to college with me this year and is one of those things I didn't know I needed. You can adjust the volume and change the song using the controls on the speaker in the shower which is so handy. I think this would be such a fun stocking stuffer or gift for a friend!

NYT 36 Hours in the U.S. and Canada- This is such a cute coffee table book that would be so interesting to flip through. I think this would be a great gift for someone who loves to travel.

Cinematic Light Box- I've been seeing these all over Instagram and think it would be such a fun addition to any room. I love that you can customize the message so you can change it for any holiday or event or even to your favorite quote!

Scalloped Card Pocket- I don't think I would survive college without one of these. I love how it sticks to the back of your phone so you don't have to carry a separate wallet with you everywhere. Kate Spade is offering 15% off today in addition to free shipping!

Chocolate Doughnut Mix- I think it's so fun to get a new baking tool or baking mix to try out while I'm home for break. This chocolate cake doughnut mix looks so good and would be a fun treat to make (and you can add all kinds of fun toppings)!

Cafe Du Monde Chicory Coffee- If you've been to New Orleans and have had beignets and coffee at Cafe Du Monde this would be a great gift! Just recently, I saw that you can buy the Cafe Du Monde coffee at most grocery stores and it's also available on Amazon Prime.

Felt Letter Board- I have seen these all over Pinterest and love how you can customize them with whatever quote or saying you want.

Dog Printed Holiday Pajamas- How fun are these pajama pants? These are perfect for the dog-lover and such a fun and different pair of pajamas to wear Christmas morning!

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Friday Finds 12/8/2017

I truly cannot believe Fall semester is already over! It seems like syllabus week just happened and now we are getting ready to take finals! I've had such a busy schedule these last few weeks and have been trying to balance getting everything done and spending time with friends I won't see for months (I will be abroad for January and then some of my friends are abroad for the whole Spring semester).
On a more fun note, Elon has had a bunch of events to help us get in the holiday spirit. On Wednesday, students were invited to the President's annual holiday party and then yesterday was the annual Luminaries event where the whole campus is lit up with holiday lights and luminaries!

At the President's holiday party with Catherine of Preppy By The Sea!

As for shopping for this week, I found a great dupe for the Salvatore Ferragamo Varina flats! Shop them for just $20 here! Also, I have been wearing this sweater nonstop. It's so comfy and is basically like a cute sweatshirt. I've been wearing it with leggings and tennis shoes and feel so much more put together wearing that than an oversized sweatshirt but still feel just as comfy! 

Best of luck to you if you are taking finals this week!
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Monogrammed Gifts To Give

Today is my last day of class and Winter break feels like it is coming out of nowhere. I'm just now starting to think about gifts for the holidays and even though I've been reading all sorts of gift guides, the holidays have seemed so far off but we are just a few weeks away! I feel like any gift is more fun when it has your monogram on it and Marley Lilly has so many cute gifts to give or add to your wishlist. I remember in high school my friends and I would always browse Marley Lilly's website when we wanted to monogram everything we owned. Now I definitely prefer simple monogrammed accessories that add a personal touch to an outfit. All of these gifts feature a subtle monogram that I think is the perfect addition to a classic gift.   
Shop my top four monogrammed gifts below: 

Jewelry Box // This was something that was definitely on my Christmas list for this year because I realized I was just keeping all of my jewelry in little bags and boxes and needed a more practical way to store everything. I love how simple this one is!

Phone Pocket // I don't think I would survive college without one of these. It's so handy to store your necessary cards in so you only have one thing to carry with you everywhere. This monogrammed one is so fun and different from the less durable (and less cute) ones most people use around campus.

Passport Holder & Luggage Tag // How fun would this be for someone who is an avid traveler or who has an upcoming trip? I'm going to Europe this winter and know this passport holder will be of use!

Makeup Bag // The majority of my makeup bags are ones that have come free with purchase of something else, so I never really purchase any for myself. This one holds all of my daily makeup and I love how elegant the metallic gold is.

Thank you to Marley Lilly for the gifts!
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Classic Plaid Brooks Brothers Dress

If you've been reading Gimme Glamour for a while, you would know that the Brooks Brothers Red Fleece line is one of my favorites for classic pieces for each season. Recently, they stopped selling the Red Fleece line in stores and I wasn't seeing too much online that I was liking until I stopped in on Black Friday! They reintroduced the women's Red Fleece line in stores and had so many great pieces and they lowered their price points a little bit. (Brooks Brothers also offers a student discount if you purchase in store!) I love the cut of this dress because it is definitely appropriate for a business event or nice dinner but if paired with a jean jacket and riding boots would be great for a more casual event.  I love how it looks paired with my new cocoon coat (on sale for 25% off with the code WEDNESDAY) - I think it really dresses up any look!

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