TinyPrints Holiday

My favorite holiday event this holiday season?

The TinyPrints #TinyPrintsHoliday party, where I got to design and order 100  custom holiday cards, envelopes & liners and address labels.

The best gift of the season? TinyPrints' custom Chistmas cards at their #TinyPrintsHoliday party

I even had my own custom invitation designer, Emily, on hand. But they’re not just available to me, they’re available to you, too! A custom invitation specialist is available to all of us all year-round with TinyPrints.

A creative girl's dream. At Petit Ermitage, picking out custom @tinyprintsholiday cards, envelope liners, envelopes and address labels for the holidays 2015. Happy early birthday and very merry Christmas to me!

Bonus? The take-home swag included cute thank you cards!

I’m fairly certain Santa was involved because this was definitely a gift of an evening on this nerd’s Christmas wish list.

If it’s still on yours, head on over to www.TinyPrints.com today!

xoxo,
BF
BF Asks: What is your holiday card like this year?
 

Holiday Hosting: Festive, Floral Holiday Pies

Dress up your dessert.

You heard me.

What’s a super simple and cheap way to dress up your festive holiday pies? FLOWERS!!

Festive, floral holiday pies!

Here is my sour cream apple pie – not so beautiful on its own – that I topped with some holiday red gerber a daisies for Thanksgiving dinner. Instant americana beauty!

I’ve found that just buying a few extra bunches of flowers can come in handy when dressing up desserts or sad looking pies. Try it yourself this holiday season!

xoxo,
BF

 

BF Asks: What pies will you and your family bake up this holiday season? 

BF Holiday Gift Guide 2015: Sweet Gifts For The Sweet Ones

Ho, ho, ho! It’s that time again.

Time for the BF Holiday Gift Guide 2015!

Today, we’ve got sweet gifts for the sweet ones.

For The Baking Belle…

For The Baking Belle…

1) Jessie Steele Holiday Apron ($37) is perfect for the hostess with the mostest that you love!

2) Dough-Ball ($14.95) My favorite culinary discovery of the year! A dream for today’s bakers! This alternative to the traditional rolling pin, this little guy rolls out pie crusts and pizza dough in no time flat, with little mess and zero fuss.

3) Don’t forget the ornaments! Target and Sur La Table has some super cute – and kitchen-appropriate – ones for your favorite baking belle, or beau.

For The Magical Mama…

 

For The Balm Bombshell…

For The BalmShell Bomb...

Got a balm-loving babe in your life? Who doesn’t? Head over and pick up the Pixi Shea Butter Lip Balm trioPixi Tinted Brilliance Balm or Kristofer Buckle Luminous Tinted Balm 3-pack.

For The Magical Mama…

For The Magical Mama...

For your magical mama – or just the luxe skincare lover in your life, there’s only one gift: Caudalie Premier Cru Anti-Aging Gift Set ($99). Worth $163, this set contains the Premier Cru The Cream for ultra nourishing and hydrating, anti-aging moisture, and the Premier Cru eye cream (MY FAVE EYE CREAM!!!)

 

For The Sassy Southerner…

For The Sassy Southerner...

1) Sur La Table Deviled Eggs Ornament ($9.99): I gave this cute little guy to my dear friend, Mattie, who is FAMOUS for his southern deviled eggs recipe. I couldn’t have imagined a more perfect gift!

2) Pixi Mini Flawless Beauty Primer ($9): Primed skin in a pinch!

3) NCLA Holiday Gift Set in Rock’N'Royalty ($29): Purple? Sparkle? Check and check.

For The Cosmetics Queen…

For The Cosmetics Queen...

For your cosmetics queen, go pro – as in pro tools for the makeup artist or makeup artist you love. You can’t go wrong with gifts from Obsessive Compulsive CosmeticsBeauty Blender, IT Cosmetics, Gorgeous Cosmetics and Z Palettes.

 

For The Cake Coquette…

For The Cake Coquette...

1) PJ Salvage Cake Party Flannel PJ Set ($65) is the sweetest way to keep your sweet one snuggly warm at night.

2)  Jessie Steele Cherry Cupcakes Oven Mitt ($13) – a whimsical gift for the kitchen for your favorite baker…with a cherry on top.

3) Sur La Table Layer Cake Ornament ($9.99) – I love this one as a little holiday happy for a client, co-worker or friend this season! I bought it this season and love seeing this on my tree every day!

4) SoapyBliss Cupcake Bath Bombs ($5) – I love these oh-so-sweet treats that look delicious enough to eat from one of my favorite independent artisans, Soapybliss. Perfect as a stocking stuffer, as a gift for the sweet lover, or even a gift for the health buff that won’t eat one, but can still bathe in one.

For The Fabulous Fashionista…

For The Fabulous Fashonista...

1) Tuc and Wes Custom Monogram Shawl ($79): A super chic shawl with the initials of your choice on it is perfect for every fashion-loving friend! And it’s so comfy that as much as I love it, my puppy seems to wanna cuddle up in it all the time.

2) A.V. Max 3-in-1 Necklaces ($90): Love wearing these necklaces to look I’m a master at layering (when…shhhh…I’m totally not).

3) Shoe Dazzle: If your gift recipient loves shoes, this is the best gift you can give. Shoes every month right to their door. You pay the subscription price. They pick the shoes.

For The Voyaging Vixen…

For The Voyaging Vixen...

1) Sleep Mask from Beauty Collection

2) Fiji Discovery Bag in Coconut ($40)

3) Caudalie Travel Size Divine Oil ($9): This little beauty can be hung like an ornament right from the tree and then inside is the magical miracle of an oil that Caudalie is known for.

4) Caudalie Beauty Elixir Ornament ($18): This makeup artist must-have and fan favorite sprays a radiant glow onto the skin and wakes you up and relaxes you, all at the same time.

For The Cookie Kid…

For The Cookie Kid...

 

1) PJ Salvage Gingerbread Flannel PJ Set ($65): The ultimate Christmas cookie-and-eggnog-sipping pajamas, these make a sweet gift for everyone. And how cute would these be for Christmas card pics?

2) Lalicious Sugar Scrub Tower ($37): These sugar cane scrubs might smell sweet in their scents of Brown Sugar Vanilla – Sugar Coconut – Sugar Kiss – Sugar Lemon Blossom – Sugar Tiare Flower – Sugar Reef, but they also work super hard sloughing away dead skin, and leaving a youthful, polished glow.

3) Aurame Essential Beauty Bar ($20): I picked this as one of my top gifts because I love that it smells like a homemade oatmeal cookie. But more importantly, this goat milk soap contains vitamins, minerals and glycerine which deeply hydrates the skin, while preventing breakouts and fighting that pesky battle against aging.

4) Sur La Table Pink Macaron Ornament ($9.99): Pink. Parisian. And sweet to boot.

xoxo,

BF
BF Asks: What sweet gifts are you gifting this season?

 

BeautyFrosting Holiday Hosting Guide 2014

It’s not just the magic of the season that makes the holidays so special. It’s also simple psychology.
Families rely on happy holiday traditions for consistency in inconsistent lives.
Here are a few of my tips for fun, festive and efficient ways to host and celebrate the season this year!
Low-key can be lovely. My family loves to do a low-key Christmas Eve. We play board games and Mom puts out an assortment of appetizers. As a professor, she always received those delicious Hickory Farms cheese and sausage trays, so she’ll put those out on her beautiful crystal serving dishes along with some spicy mustard, sweet and dill pickles, creamy brie cheese and crackers, veggies and dip, spicy cheddar biscuits and her homemade shrimp ball (my fave).
Serve with some Cabernet Sauvignon and Scrabble and we’re one happy family!

The McCoy sibling holiday celebratin' in style

Casseroles are key. For Thanksgiving, Christmas, and – really all – holiday weekends, casseroles can be a lifesaver. With the relatives visiting and friends stopping by, I’ve always found having a pre-homemade casserole in the freezer a must-have. Keep a breakfast casserole and you’re good to go! And for the day after a big holiday, such as Christmas, make it easy on yourself, and make a casserole with all of those delicious, hearty leftovers. Get creative with that cranberry sauce. Who knows? It might become one of your family’s favorite recipes! Serve casserole with a salad and it’s the perfect, post-holiday meal!

Serve a signature cocktail or punch. Be sure to make the base of your cocktail in the autumnal spirit – whether it be apple, cranberry, pear or pumpkin, you can’t go wrong with a winner that whets the whistle. Two of my favorite recipes? My Charlotte’s Applejack Brandy Cider

Charlotte's Applejack Brandy Cider

and my Brandywine Punch which I created for this past Thanksgiving.

Brandywine Punch

Tailor-make your tablescape. For instance, I love this turkey.

Let one piece of decor guide the rest of your tablescape planning

I love her so much that I tend to design everything around her – from the flowers to the dishes to the table runner aand tablecloths, Brandwywine sets the mood. Oh, did I forget to mention that I also named her? Yep. Her name is Brandywine. For instance this year, I designed a rose and gold table setting with a chalboard butcher paper runner down the center and, naturally, called it Brandywine Rustic.

One single Thankgiving decor element dictated my whole theme this year

Plan ahead to save your head. To make for a happy – and peaceful – holiday, about 2-4 weeks before the big day, ask all family members to submit their favorite recipes that they’d like you to cook. Also, ask what they’d like to contribute. This is a two-fold brilliant and sneaky strategy – a) it reminds everyone that they should contribute something and b) you can see overlap when it comes to the traditional family faves you cook, so you won’t overcook.  Sometimes the family favorites that we think our loved ones love aren’t the true loves. This also helps us see their changing tastes and plan the menu accordingly each year.

What would Beyonce do? She would plan ahead and make that menu!

Be an smart shopper. I realize how bossy that sounds, so let me explain. I like to (but don’t always) buy my canned goods, sugar, flour, etc. the week before Thanksgiving. That way the pumpkin isn’t sold out and I’m not carrying in 20 loads of groceries up my stairs. Because a Thanksgiving hernia isn’t as romantic as it sounds. Then, about 2-3 days before, I buy the dairy, eggs and produce. I save the uber fresh stuff, including flowers, for the last day. This means less hassle and running all over town with all of those other last minute shoppers. You’ve got this handled.

Save the best for last!

Sass up the standards. Really wanna venture out? Ditch the pumpkin pie and bake some pumpkin creme brûlée. Keep the family faves but add in some new dishes to create new traditions. Every Thanksgiving, I bake pumpkin croissant bread pudding with cranberries and moonshine sauce. I love pumpkin pie, but I wanted to create my own tradition. Now, it’s a family favorite. I’d highly encourage you to do the same. Whether it’s turning up your turkey, making your dressing more daring, or spicing up a side, try updating those classic faves. If you – or your family – doesn’t like it, you can always go back to the traditional recipe the next year.

Pumpkin Croissant Bread Pudding with Eggnog Moonshine Sauce

Cook up some soups or beef organ yo I had let Matt Marr did for our Christmas dinner that he made me need a few days ahead of time to save time and it actually tasted better cause the flavors had time to marinate why they were frozen.
Ornament Originality. Have each person bring an ornament to share with the family tree each year. This year, I am taking my mom a french cruller donut that I found at Dylan’s Candy Shop because I grew up with her eating a dunkin’ donut on many a morning when we would drive to school. Sweet memories. And isn’t that what the holiday season is all about?
xoxo,
BFBF Asks: What are some of your family’s holiday traditions?

Thirsty Thursday: A BF Homespun Recipe – Spiced Butter Rum Eggnog

The perfect Christmas cocktail: BeautyFrosting Homespun Eggnog

I get it.
You wanna make homemade eggnog – you know – the really, really good kind, but…it’s Christmas and, well, you’re busy.

Have I got a homespun recipe for you.

A golden recipe for the ages, homespun style.

For those of you BF readers who don’t know, a “homespun” recipe is when you make something that’s not from scratch taste like scratch, just by spinning a little homemade-tasting ingredients in there.

This recipe is delicious on its own, but with that 1/2 cup of Powell & Mahoney Vintage Original Cocktail Mixer in Old Ballycastle Ginger it just adds that festive holiday zing, that’s sure to invoke a warm, fuzzy, festive feeling.

Make it spirited with a little Captain Morgan Spicred Rum or unspirited, it’s up to you ‘cuz since it’s a holiday favorite, it will feel spirited no matter what you add.

A BF Homespun Recipe: Spiced Butter Rum Eggnog

1 Tbsp Salted Butter

1 tsp Vanilla extract

1 Container of your favorite store-bought eggnog (I like Southern Comfort Vanilla Spice- it’s non-alcoholic)

1 c Whole Milk

1/2 c Powell & Mahoney Vintage Original Cocktail Mixer in Old Ballycastle Ginger

Optional: 1 c Captain Morgan Spiced Rum

Whipped Cream (preferred amount – I personally like a small, snow-capped mountain)

Dash of Nutmeg

Melt butter in saucepan. Add vanilla until bubbling.

Add eggnog and milk. Stir until it starts to boil, then keep on low heat.

Add ginger mix and/or rum.
Top with whipped cream and a dash of nutmeg.
Serve with Christmas cookies!

Eggnog - the preferred holiday beverage in this house

*BF Tip: It’s also DELICIOUS as a homemade eggnog latte, just heat a cup up in the morning and add 1/4 cup coffee. My current coffee of choice? Pumpkin.

Another tip?
Enjoy with friends!!

Best enjoyed with friends. *featuring PJ Salvage pajamas

 

xoxo,
BF

BF Asks: What is your holiday beverage of choice? 

A Festive Fête Full of Heart: Cocktails With Caravents at Mr. C Beverly Hills

Is there any gift more rewarding than the gift of giving back?
Not in my book.

Photobooth fun at Mr. C Beverly Hills

So I was delighted a few weeks ago when Caravents invited me to their #CocktailsWithCaravents holiday party (co-hosted by Sazan Barzani and Sheryl Luke) benefitting Dress For Success.

The co-hosts of the evening Photo Credit: @paigejonesphoto for #Caravents

Not only was it a meaningful night, but it was a beautiful one to boot, thanks to the delicate details that Caravents is famous for.

Mingling and merriment occurred. Photo Credit: @paigejonesphoto for #Caravents

To welcome us at the exquisite Mr.C Beverly Hills, we were greeted with mulled wine and roasted chestnuts.

Chestnuts roasting by..a brass punchbowl of mulled wine? I'll take it.

 

Then, there was – of course  - photobooth fun.

Photobooth fun at #CocktailsWithCaravents

Another round of cocktails by Mr. C Beverly Hills, featuring ​Abso​lot​ Elyx - the oh-so-delicious cranberry ​”H​oliday​-Thyme”​ cocktails that we couldn’t stop staring at and sipping.

Holiday Thyme. Photo Credit: @paigejonesphoto for #Caravents

And, as if the evening wasn’t gift itself on its own, we were given luxe, overflowing Gift Bags By Rachael.

Gift Bags by Rachael Photo Credit: @paigejonesphoto for #Caravents

To cap things off? How about cookies and milk and mini ice cream cones?

Sweets as nightcaps Photo Credit: @paigejonesphoto for #Caravents

The sweetest of all though was that, thanks to the generosity of all the guests, they collected over 250 pieces of clothing, accessories and beauty products to donate to Dress For Success, helping disadvantaged women gain the skills, confidence and attire needed to gain economic independence.

The collection of all that was donated in the lobby of Mr.C Beverly Hills Photo Credit: @paigejonesphoto for #Caravents

And it is such a gift to all of us who attended that we were able to use the power of our voices for good by properly kicking off the holiday season! We even raised awareness for Dress For Success by making over 2 million social media impressions over the course of the evening.

Thanks for hosting such a festive holiday fête, full of heart, Caravents!
xoxo,
BF
BF Asks: How will you give back this season? 

My 37th 70s Soirée

Another year has rolled around, and you know what that means…another birthday party!

Blowing out the candles of my dream cake

 

I love a theme party and I have one every year to celebrate each trip around the sun.

Dawn McCoy, copyright 1977. teehee. *chalk art by Yumarie Morales

This year, I decided to dress up as the strongest woman I could think of to motivate me for the upcoming 37th year: Wonder Woman.

We are all Wonder Women. And we only get more wondrous as the years progress.

The beautiful custom costume was designed by Christina Maybin of Cirquelde and I truly felt like Wonder Woman wearing it. I’d like to think it was the perfect start to a powerful and passionate year ahead!

Wonder Woman custom costume designed by Christina Maybin of Cirquelde.com

And you know we had cake! My dream cake was designed by my LA favorite, Hansen’s Cakes.

Hansen's Cakes designed this beautiful cake

It was inspired by my new favorite Christmas ornament that I bought at Rolling Greens a few weeks ago. They did an AMAZING job!

My favorite new Christmas ornament inspired what would become my dream cake!

And then the fabulous Takahiro Watanabe & Wendy came and set up their new photobooth, Intertwined Photography, and took some beautiful shots of my 70s-clad guests.

Photobooth fun with Intertwined Photography

Photo by Intertwined Photography

Girls on film with Intertwined Photography

Talented chalk artist, Yumarie Morales, designed this fun table sign, that guests could sign with their messages of “I met Dawn…”, “One word that reminds me of Dawn is…”, etc.

Art by Yumarie Morales

It was a night I’ll never forget, thanks to my friends and all of the talented people who made the night so magical.

These cute letter lights are by Uptown Country Home

 

xoxo,
BF

BF Asks: How did you celebrate your birthday this year? 

Thirsty Thursday: BeautyFrosting’s Brandywine Punch

For Thanksgiving this year, I thought it would be cool to create a cocktail that would match my decor. And because I’m me, well, I did just that. The theme? Brandywine, based on the decorative turkey of the same name that I designed my entire Thanksgiving tablescape around (see photo here).

Thirsty Thursday: BeautyFrosting's Brandywine Punch

It was a HIT! So much so, that I whipped it up again for my birthday 70s Soiree the following wee. Now, you can try it for yourself!

BeautyFrosting’s Brandywine Punch

*Makes approx. 12-16 cocktails

1) Sprinkle 1 Tbsp pomegranate seeds in bottom of champagne flutes.

2) In a large beverage container or large pitcher, combine:

1 Bottle of Simply Cranberry

1 Bottle of Simply Apple

1 c BeautyFrosting Brown Sugar Simple Syrup (see below)

1-2 c AppleJack Brandy

1 Bottle Mumm Napa Brut Rosé

Pour cocktail mixture over pomegranate seeds.

Serve with a grateful heart.

BeautyFrosting’s Holiday Brown Sugar Simple Syrup

1 c Brown Sugar

1 c Water

1 tsp Cinnamon

1 tsp Maple syrup

In a small saucepan, combine sugar, cinnamon and water. Simmer over medium heat, constantly stirring until sugar is dissolved. Add in maple syrup. Cool. Pour simple sugar into cocktail of choice. Or store in refrigerator in pyrex or airtight container for up to a month.

Brandywine punch leaves all in good cheer!

xoxo,
BF

BF Asks: What do you sip on Thanksgiving? 

Getting Holiday Party Pretty in a Pinch with Charlotte Tilbury and Blowpro

A few weeks ago, I was expected to attend a Shoe Dazzle event at The London in 2 hours but had been running all over town, makeup-free with post-spin class hair.

Well, this would not do.

But what’s a girl to do with less than 2 hours to appear showered, polished and pretty amongst the LA tastemaker elite?
Well, I headed straight to Nordstrom at The Grove to get primped and prettied by the hair experts at Blowpro and my new fave, Charlotte Tilbury.

Getting Holiday Party Pretty with Charlotte Tilbury

This might be the first time you’ve heard about Charlotte Tilbury, but I can assure you it won’t be the last. Especially not on this site. My plan is to show you each one of Charlotte’s featured looks, so you will go get this magic, er – I mean, makeup for yourself. Think Victoria’s Secret model meets screen siren, because Charlotte’s responsible for much of their makeup!

On this particular day, I opted for what has become my evening staple makeup look this season –  The Dolce Vita. La Quanna Chong, education & training director at Charlotte Tilbury, applied the Dolce Vita shadow palette ($52) and I was hooked. There’s even the best makeup tutorial I’ve seen in ages, explaining exactly how to do it at home. Best part? You get to dip your fingers into glitter!

These pretty products prettified my face, thanks to Charlotte Tilbury!

Pictured above are the products featured on me, all by Charlotte Tilbury: WonderGlow Instant Soft-Focus Beauty Flash Primer ($52) , Dolce Vita Luxury Palette ($52), The Retoucher ($32),  Lip Lustre in Bardot Beige ($22), Cheek To Chic in The Climax ($40), Brow Lift in Brooke ($29) and Full Fat Lashes in Glossy Black ($29).

Charlotte, I have not been this excited about a makeup line since Trish McEvoy in 1995 when I was 17 years old. I’m not exaggerating here, folks. Stay tuned for many a post on all of Charlotte’s products I love.

After I got all dolled up with Charlotte and La Quanna, I headed right down the aisle of Nordstrom Beauty to Blow at Nordstrom by BlowPropro.

Getting coiffed by Blow at Nordstrom by Blow Pro

Um, have you been to Blowpro? It’s a blowout bar right in Nordstrom! Heaven!! You can get your dress, grab your tights, try on some shoes, get your makeup done, and then get your hair coiffed all in under 2 hours! Perfect for busy ladies like us this holiday season!

Blow at Nordstrom by BlowPro gave me a gorgeous blowout and I walked out feeling fresh, fierce and like a million bucks…

 

Coiffed and all dolled up with somewhere to go!

which was just perfect for an event, where I ended up posing on a chess board.

Check. Mate. (at The London WeHo)

Check. Mate.

All dolled up with my girl, Orly Shani, from E!

 

xoxo,
BF

BF Asks: What makeup has gotten you excited in the past?

Recipe Box: “East Nashvilles” – Southern Breakfast Sandwiches, Featuring Hickory Farms Ham

There I was. The day after Thanksgiving with SO much Hickory Farms ham left!
What’s a girl to do?

Well, this girl had a birthday party to cook for, and I knew just what to do. Whip up some delicious southern breakfast sandwiches with that leftover ham!

Recipe Box: "East Nashvilles" - Southern Breakfast Sandwiches, Featuring Hickory Farms Ham

I was inspired by my days living in East Nashville and decided to bake some buttermilk cheddar biscuits, some homemade maple peach butter and sandwich the ham right there in the sweet spot in the center.

Perfect for breakfast, lunch or a nighttime party, these little guys disappear fast!

Usually, I have tons of food left over after a party, but not these guys. Every single one was eaten. People were RAAAAAVING! And they’re so easy to make, that I whipped another bunch up the following Monday for a voiceover session. Everyone loved them there at the studio, too!

So go ahead and get that Hickory Farms Spiral Sliced Honey Gold Ham ($85) and then get creative if you have leftovers! I sure am! So much so, that I’ll be featuring another recipe with it next week!

Dawn’s East Nashvilles: Southern Breakfast Sandwiches

Step 1: Bake Those Biscuits

Pa’s Buttermilk Biscuits

Makes approx 16 biscuits

*Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

5 c All-Purpose Flour

1 Tbsp salt

1 Tbsp Baking Powder

8 Tbsp Salted Butter, chilled and cubed

2 c Buttermilk, chilled

1 – 1 1/2 c Sharp Cheddar Cheese

Combine first 3 ingredients in a large bowl. Blend in butter, using a fork or fingers,  until mixture gets crumbly. Add buttermilk and stir until soft dough is created. And, y’all, that dough will be sticky! Add in cheddar and make sure it’s well distributed throughout dough.

Drop dough with an ice cream scoop, 1 in apart onto Silpat-lined baking sheets.

Bake for 15 – 20 minutes or until golden.

*Let biscuits cool.

Step 2: Whip Up That Homemade Maple Peach Butter.

Dawn’s Easy Homemade Maple Peach Butter

1/2 c Softened Salted Butter

3 – 4 Tbsp Peach Jam or Preserves (depending on how peachy you like it. I like it SUPER peachy!)

1 tsp Maple Syrup

Mix until well-blended and smooth.

Step 3: Butter those biscuits.

*After biscuits have cooled, cut biscuits in half and slather on the peach butter on each biscuit half. 

Step 4: Cut up that ham.

Cut ham into round or square pieces, using kitchen scissors. Sandwich 2-3 small slices of ham in between buttered biscuit halves.

And that’s it, you’ve got East Nashvilles ready for eatin’!