KNOW. YOUR. WORTH.🏆

Know your worth.

Know your worth.

As some of you know, I do quite a bit of creative consulting and brand strategizing.

It started 3 years ago, and I don’t promote it because it was not something I ever set out to do.
Rather, it was something that found me – smackdab in the middle of doing what I love – and I answered the call.
After all, much to my mother’s chagrin, I am not a business major. I am just a person who built the brand, and as strange as it sounds the brand just happens to be me. People took notice and started asking for help, and started PAYING me for it.
Yep. Not something I planned or had even attempted to manifest.
I am a creative, not a business person, I always thought.
WRONG.
It was a lovely lesson in avoiding labels, because labels can so easily be peeled off and applied elsewhere.
Recently, I had a growing experience when a friend asked if they could be a client and put me on retainer.
Eeek. 🙈
It made me very uncomfortable, so much so that I said I needed to take a day to think about it.
I mean, I love working with brands, charities and personalities, but a close friend who would pay me like they do?
Yikes.
But, then this friend put it beautifully, when addressing my initial hesitation with genuine confusion.
“Why does this make you uncomfortable? You are the best at what you do, and I want to hire the best. If not you, I’ll hire someone else, and why would I hire someone else when I have the budget to pay a friend who would do it better than anyone else?”
That made my decision MUCH easier.
And, it made me really get in touch with my hesitation, and where it stemmed from.
I realized that as confident as I have become as I’ve accrued years and experiences on this here planet and in this here Hollywood town, sometimes I question my value, even when I may not realize that is what I’m doing.
I find this particularly funny because I have no problem whatsoever letting others know what THEIR value is – so much so, that sometimes, I actually think my greatest strength is helping other people understand what their biggest value is on this earth.
Today, as I sat at a brunch meeting at Urth Cafe with a pr maven turned blossoming blogger, who was seeking some guidance and direction, I was reminded of this one area in which I am still growing, and learning…and, then I listened to my words to her as I said them.
“Know your worth. Don’t spend so much time trying to take care of everyone else, that you forget to take time for yourself. Sometimes, we involve ourselves in caring for others, so that we don’t have to be brave and do what we are most scared to do.”
Wow. WOW.
As much as we all have a responsibility to care for one another, our utmost responsibility is to care for ourselves.
And, one way to care for yourself, Dawn McCoy (and you, dear reader) is by recognizing your talents and strengths, making them readily available for other people…and KNOWING YOUR WORTH.
Snap.

Friendsgiving 2015: A Very Hickory Farms Friendsgiving

Friendsgiving 2015

Friendsgiving 2015

My favorite thing on this here planet is to have people sitting around my table.

Friendsgiving 2015 with Hickory Farms and friends at my home

Friendsgiving 2015 with Hickory Farms and friends at my home

So, when Hickory Farms and I decided to team up to host a Friendsgiving luncheon to launch their Signature Party Planner Gift Box ($46) this holiday season, which benefits No Kid Hungry

Hickory Farms Signature Party Planner (only $46), and for every box sold, Hickory Farms donates $5 to No Kid Hungry, which feeds 50 kids.

Hickory Farms Signature Party Planner (only $46), and for every box sold, Hickory Farms donates $5 to No Kid Hungry, which feeds 50 kids.

we wanted to create a warm, open-hearted environment where many of the inspiring women I know could sit, dine, support one another, share their successes and proclaim their goals and gratitude.

Mismatched plates? No problem. Pick up seasonal plates at a flea market or discount store for whimsical, carefree holiday entertaining. I got these plates for $2 each!

Mismatched plates? No problem. Pick up seasonal plates at a flea market or discount store for whimsical, carefree holiday entertaining. I got these plates for $2 each! And, I served water out of mason jars (just about $1/pop)

Putting the friends in Friendsgiving

Putting the friends in Friendsgiving with Eva of Happily Eva After, Lily Diamond of Kale and Caramel, and Ellen of Hedley and Bennett.

I invited a few of the finest folks in my social media influencer life, who really appreciate the reason of the season: gratitude. 

Starting the lunch off in the right spirit by placing a "I am grateful for…" card on everyone's place setting, to get them in the mood…for gratitude, of course!

Starting the lunch off in the right spirit by placing a “I am grateful for…” card on everyone’s place setting, to get them in the mood…for gratitude, of course!

Good guests can make or break an intimate in-home gathering, and if there’s even one person who’s a weak link, simply by bringing in a bit of negative energy, the experience can be ruined for all. Well, there was no weak link at this ladies lunch. Instead, a lunch that was supposed to last 2 hours, lasted almost 4, with all of the guests staying until sundown, save a couple who had prior obligations.

As beautiful as the sunflower centerpieces  were, the real centerpiece of the lunch was gratitude

As beautiful as the sunflower centerpieces were, the real centerpiece of the lunch was gratitude

We went ’round the table, sharing our stories, listening to those of others, and brainstorming about how we can make a difference both in each other’s lives and in this world…all while drinking wine and nibbling on cheese and sausage. I watched women who had never met before leave as good friends, and knew that from this single, magical afternoon, some life-changing alliances were born.

Strangers who became friends mean my Friendsgiving was a success!

Strangers who became friends mean my Friendsgiving was a success!

As for the Friendsgiving menu? Here’s just a little of what you can get when you order from Hickory Farms this holiday season to keep everything festive, while keeping your guests fed and fueled, without you feeling overworked.

As a host, I felt no stress with my guests, thanks to the ease, convenience and deliciousness of Hickory Farms!

I actually was able to sit, eat, drink and talk!!! As a host, I felt no stress with my guests, thanks to the ease, convenience and deliciousness of Hickory Farms!

First up? Drinks, of course. Did you know that Hickory Farms sells wine? And, I mean really, really GOOD wine!! My favorite is the Flora Springs Merlot ($40). I want to buy like 6 cases of it for all of the holiday entertaining I do…and maybe just to sip while watching Scandal. Who’s with me?

Wanna get one of the best Merlots I've ever tasted? Head over to HickoryFarms.com. Seriously.

Wanna get one of the best Merlots I’ve ever tasted? Head over to HickoryFarms.com. Seriously.

An easy peasy cheese tray with Hickory Farms cheeses served as a tempting – and satisfying – appetizer.

The easiest way to entertain? An easy peasy cheese tray, thanks to Hickory Farms. Some of my lifelong faves? Smoked cheddar, jalapeño cheddar, farmhouse cheddar and port wine cheese spread.

The easiest way to entertain? An easy peasy cheese tray, thanks to Hickory Farms. Just cut into different shapes, and you’re done! Some of my lifelong faves? Smoked cheddar, Jalapeño cheddar, Farmhouse cheddar and Port wine cheese spread.

My personal FAVE is the Port Wine cheese spread. My professor parents used to be gifted with it every holiday season, and I would eat it up with a spoon before anyone else had the chance!

My personal FAVE is the Port Wine cheese spread. My professor parents used to be gifted with it every holiday season, and I would eat it up with a spoon before anyone else had the chance!

And, don’t forget the sausage! I chose to serve the Turkey Summer Sausage and the Signature Beef Summer Sausage for two tastes.

Turkey Summer Sausage and Beef Summer Sausage, served on a slab of wood for added harvest -festive feel.

A tale of two tastes: Turkey Summer Sausage and Beef Summer Sausage, served on a slab of wood for added harvest -festive feel.

A Spiral Sliced HoneyGold Ham ($75, serves 14-18 generously).

A holiday staple in my family? A Hickory Farms Spiral Sliced Ham. I serve it for both Thanksgiving AND Easter!

A holiday staple in my family? A Hickory Farms Spiral Sliced Ham. I serve it for both Thanksgiving AND Easter!

The big hit, though? The DIY Biscuit Bar!

DIY Biscuit bar, featuring Hickory Farms ham, cheeses, sausage, mustards and homemade Hickory Farms Farmhouse Cheddar Pimento cheese.

DIY Biscuit bar, featuring Hickory Farms ham, cheeses, sausage, mustards and homemade Hickory Farms Farmhouse Cheddar Pimento cheese.

But, more on that on tomorrow’s blog. I did it purely for ease and convenience, but my-oh-my, was it tasty!

My Hickory Farms-stacked biscuit was gooood

My Hickory Farms-stacked biscuit was gooood

And, who knew? Shredded Hickory Farms farmhouse cheddar cheese makes for a delicious pimento cheese spread, with my recipe, of course! (That recipe will be up on the blog tomorrow, too).

My homemade Pimento cheese, featuring Hickory Farms Farmhouse cheddar

My homemade Pimento cheese, featuring Hickory Farms Farmhouse cheddar

And, lastly, a well-stocked dessert table.

A well-stocked dessert table, thanks to Hickory Farms: (from L to R) Chocolate Lava Cakes, Red Velvet Cakes, Chocolate Decadence Trio.

A well-stocked dessert table, thanks to Hickory Farms: (from L to R) Chocolate Lava Cakes, Red Velvet Cake and Chocolate Decadence Trio.

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There are those gnome-inspired wooden cake stands again. What can I say? I like a theme.

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I'm just a girl who can't say no!!! At least, when it comes to Hickory Farms red velvet cake. Geesh!

I’m just a girl who can’t say no!!! At least, when it comes to Hickory Farms red velvet cake. Geesh!

And, a little nibble of cheddar to balance that sweetness out. How trés français of me!

A little cheese with my cake, please.

A little cheese with my cake, please.

As for the decor?

Friendsgiving decor

Friendsgiving decor

I kept it cozy and comfy with harvest-hued rugs, blankets, pillows and puffs on the ground…

Cozy on up, Friendsgiving guests!

Cozy on up, Friendsgiving guests!

my mismatched chairs around the farmhouse table…

Who says everything has to match?

Who says everything has to match?

and a chalkboard runner that my creative friends could scribble and doodle on, while sharing their gratitude. Listen, we’re all just big kids. If you give them chalk pencils, they’re gonna get busy. Trust me.

You supply the chalkboard table runner and chalk pencils, and they'll supply the creativity and gratitude

You supply the chalkboard table runner and chalk pencils, and they’ll supply the creativity and gratitude

 

As for the fun factor? Well, there’s only one person I call in for that. My dear friend, and creative powerhouse and constant source of inspiration, Courtney Collins of Little Junebugs and Max Love Project.

My creative source of inspiration: Courtney Collins of Little Junebugs and Max Love Project.

My creative source of inspiration: Courtney Collins of Little Junebugs and Max Love Project.

 

Courtney and I decided to do a “Pretty Your Pumpkin” station to entertain guests with metallic paint, sequins, studs, and…helllooooo…GLITTER(!!!!) to pump up their pumpkins. Disclaimer: This was all Courtney, as I am the least crafty person you know.

Pretty Your Pumpkn.

Pretty Your Pumpkin. *signs by the FAB Karla Magno

She's crafty!

She’s crafty!

The one high maintenance thing I did? I did ask my fashionable guests to wear shades of fall-festive autumn. Don’t judge me. And, besides, it sure did look pretty.

Fall-festive fashion sets the mood for a fall fest!

Fall-festive fashion sets the mood for a fall fest! Here, with the fall festive Eva Amurri, founder and author of the blog, Happily Eva After.

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Actress and host of Dating Naked, Amy Paffrath

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Rachel McCord of The McCord List

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Leila Lewis of Be Inspired PR and Inspired By This blog, and host, actress & producer, Diane Mizota.

As fun as the whole day was, my favorite part was when we all sat around the table for the last few hours, sharing our stories and getting to know one another, while we sipped wine and nibbled on sausage and cheese.

This was my favorite part…besides the Hickory Fams port wine cheese spread, of course.

This was my favorite part…besides the Hickory Fams port wine cheese spread, of course. Here are Eva, and Steph Eitel Farrar and Sierra French-Myerson, co-editors of the cooking and entertaining blog, French and Farrar.

Takin' it easy, as the sun said goodbye and our tummies told us we were full.

Takin’ it easy, as the sun said goodbye and our tummies told us we were full.

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With Amy Paffrath and The Modern Day Girlfriend creator & editor, Arianna Thomopoulos.

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Hugs all around! With Ellen Bennett of Hedley And Bennett.

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With all those influencers, yes, there WAS bound to be a little tweeting going on.

Old friends and new friends became all friends.

Old friends and new friends became all friends.

Thank you to every single one of you who graced my table with your grace, and thank you especially to Hickory Farms for bringing these fine women together.

Girls really do run the world, and with these women at the helm of it, I feel completely confident in our future.

Dawn Do? In sticking with the reason for the season, when it’s time to buy those host gifts this holiday season, pick up a Hickory Farms Signature Party Planner Gift Box ($46). For every box sold, Hickory Farms donates $5 to No Kid Hungry, which feeds 50 kids.

The perfect  gift that gives back: Hickory Farms Signature Party Planner, benefitting No Kid Hungry

The perfect gift that gives back: Hickory Farms Signature Party Planner, benefitting No Kid Hungry

Ellen and I with our gifts that give back…to No Kid Hungry, that is!

Ellen and I with our gifts that give back…to No Kid Hungry, that is!

That’s better – and sweeter – than any box of chocolates.

xoxo,
Dawn

Details:

Food & Wine: Hickory Farms

Photography: Molly + CO

Signage: Karla Magno

Event Production: Good Carma Studio & Dawn McCoy

 

Dear 15 Me

Hey there!
Do you remember being 15? The insecurities, the peer pressure, the awkwardness?

No? Well, then consider yourself lucky.
It’s hard out there for teens, and I want to do something about it.
While there’s no time machine to take us back to 15 to correct our thinking back then, we at #Dear15Me hope our past stories and struggles, and current strengths and hindsight vision will help inspire – and make the road a little easier – for teens to walk today.
Sometimes we all just need to hear these two words: "You're Okay." Won't you share the words that encourage you?

Sometimes we all just need to hear these two little words words: “YOU’RE OKAY.”

Bonus? Those who have participated, thus far, tell me that sharing their stories has been super cathartic, and has helped boost their confidence today.

Yep. This is actually a win-win movement that changes both the lives of others, and yourself.

Here’s the scoop:
How does it work?
It’s really simple. And there are two easy choices to get involved, using the power of social media.
CHOICE A
1) Post a picture of yourself at 15 (or any teen age), with a caption saying: “Dear 15 Me…” 
2) Follow it with what  you were feeling at that age, and most importantly..
3) What do you wish you could go back and tell yourself at 15? What would help or inspire you to get through those tough years with a little grace?
4) Share on your social media channels, ask 5 of your friends to join the movement and ask them to do the same. 
Together, we can make a difference in the confidence of today’s teens. And be sure to tag @Dear15Me and @BeautyFrosting so we can share your experiences with our social media channels.
 
 
CHOICE B
1) No picture readily available of you at 15? Don’t feel like sharing 15-year-old you with the world? No problem. Just print your choice of the “Dear 15 Me…” sign pdf below.
2) Write your piece of advice on there, and tell the world what you wish you could tell 15-year-old you in the caption. What do you wish you could go back and tell yourself at 15? What would help or inspire you to get through those tough years with a little grace?
4) Share on your social media channels, ask 5 of your friends to join the movement and ask them to do the same. 
Together, we can make a difference in the confidence of today’s teens. And be sure to follow us and tag @Dear15Me and @BeautyFrosting so we can share your experiences with our social media channels.

It’s that easy.
Below, please find examples from celebs, bloggers, influencers, myself – and others who have joined the movement – so you can get an idea of what we’re all about.
xoxo,
Dawn

Actress, Sarah Jane Morris, shares her support of the #Dear15Me movement for teens everywhere – and the future of her kids, Emmett and Beau (pictured here)!

Actress Sarah Jane Morris is on board!

Actress Sarah Jane Morris is on board

Blogger, Rachel Sarnoff of Mommy Greenest, shared her story on her blog, and it was beautiful!

Blogger, Rachel Sarnoff of Mommy Greenest, shared her story on her blog, and it was beautiful!

Blogger, Rachel Sarnoff of Mommy Greenest, shared her story on her blog, and it was beautiful!

 

Actress & Thick Dumpling Skin blogger, Lynn Chen, shared how she wished she had better spent her time in her teens, and it was deeply moving.

Actress & Thick Dumpling Skin blogger, Lynn Chen, shared how she wished she had better spent her time in her teens, and it was deeply moving.

Actress & Thick Dumpling Skin blogger, Lynn Chen, shared how she wished she had better spent her time in her teens, and it was deeply moving.

What have I learned in my life of struggles and strengths? To embrace your quirkiness. It can be the very thing that sets you apart.

I  say, "Embrace your quirkiness!"

I say, “Embrace your quirkiness!”

 

BF Asks: Are you up for the Challenge? The #Dear15Me Challenge, that is. If so, post you pic and spread the word! Want to use a current picture, holding our #Dear15Me sign. Email me at Dawn@BeautyFrosting.com and we’ll send the printable pdf files your way!

McCoy’s MeCations: The Orlando Hotel & West 3rd Street in Los Angeles

It was time. Time for what? A MeCation, naturally. My spring has been the busiest yet, and I was in need of a little R&R.

My week is usually filled to the brim with activities and events, all in the name of work. But this McCoy’s MeCation with The Orlando Hotel on West 3rd Street in Los Angeles, was a little different. This was the FIRST time that a number of my girlfriends actually wrote me to say they were jealous. While I don’t like anyone feeling jealous of anything I’m doing, in this case, I could certainly understand. I felt utterly treated and pampered to the best of what LA has to offer, and all right down the street from me, on my favorite street!

We started out by checking into our rooms at The Orlando Hotel on West 3rd Street.

Welcome to The Orlando!

Welcome to The Orlando!

When I found out I would be staying in their Entertainers Suite – complete with an extra room for entertaining, and a large balcony, overlooking West 3rd Street, I knew I had found my home for the next two days.

 

The balcony of The Entertainer suite at The Orlando

The balcony of The Entertainer suite at The Orlando

I was in heaven.

Heaven, overlooking West 3rd Street

Heaven, overlooking West 3rd Street. (Editor’s note: While this looks relaxing, every single girl on that balcony was SO nervous I would fall)

But, as gorgeous as the room was, I couldn’t rest on my laurels, or on the luxurious linens, in this case.

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No, we had a jam-packed agenda ahead of us, and we had places to go and people to see!

Bloggers on the loose!

Bloggers on the loose!

First up on our day of pampering?

Bedhead Pajamas, where they had champ and super comfy pjs, waiting for us.

Always the hostess with the mostest…yep, even when it's not my party. It's what I do.

Always the hostess with the mostest…yep, even when it’s not my party. It’s what I do.

We all loved the pajama party-meets-British-boho bedroom vibe of the store, so of course, we snapped a pic or two.

On the bed at, um, Bedhead

No, we don’t normally snuggle on the bed at events. On the bed at, um, Bedhead.

We shared one more toast outside in the beautiful Bedhead courtyard, but there was no time to waste.

photo copy 6

Next, we were off to Murad to have relaxing hand massages, and face mapping to tell us how our skin was looking!

Relaxxxxxed at Murad

I was thrilled that my skin only read a low “13” on the damage scale, so with proper skincare, my skin is aging right on time.

Fear not. It's just my face being mapped for sun damage, and (gasp!), signs of aging. Not too shabby.

Fear not. It’s just my face being mapped for sun damage, and (gasp!), signs of aging. Not too shabby.

We then headed right next door to get gorgeous blowouts at one of my favorite salons, Spoke And Weal.

Hair done? Check.

Hair done? Check.

Then, we headed back to The Orlando for dinner at The Churchill.

The food and handcrafted cocktails were delicious! And we actually got to taste EVERYTHING on this menu, as it was served family style.

Delicious possibilities at The Churchill

Delicious possibilities at The Churchill

 

But, my favorite part  was when I asked everyone to go around the table, and say what they admire about each of our dinner dates. I love doing this with my girlfriends – new and old – as everyone leaves the table, feeling uplifted. I wish all women would do this!

Happy & hungry girls.

Happy & hungry girls.

 

After dinner, we headed upstairs and changed into our Bedhead pjs, where Rachael and I were so excited about my bathtub, that we hopped right in! You know. Totally normal.

Can't have a proper me cation without bathtime!

And then, inspired by our pretty pjs, we opted for a pillow fight photo session.

Pillow fight!

Pillow fight!

As a bedtime treat, the sweet folks at Sweet E’s had left us some sweet nothings on our bedside tables. Sweet dreams, indeed.

Look at the custom BeautyFrosting cupcake and Orlando cookie! Swoon.

Look at the custom BeautyFrosting cupcake and Orlando cookie! Swoon.

Next? SLEEP. Contrary to what I’ve always thought, pampering can be exhausting.

The next morning, I kicked off the day with a little me-time meditation on my balcony.

Head in the clouds, heart in the right place

Head in the clouds, heart in the right place

Then, it was Clover Juice morning happy hour with my fellow editors and bloggers.

These robes were just as comfy as they look.

These robes were just as comfy as they look.

Followed by pool time, naturally.

Sunday Funday

Sunday Funday: Sun bathing at its best in the middle of the city

It was one of my all-time favorite weekends. But it’s not just for me! If you’re feeling a little rundown – or just in need of a break – head to West 3rd Street, and stay at The Orlando for your own little mecation. All of this pampering is merely steps away. And trust me, you’ll be glad you did.

 

xoxo,
Dawn

Editor’s Note: As per all my McCoy’s MeCations, this post was sponsored by the participating host hotel – in this case, The Orlando Hotel (8384 W. 3rd Street, Los Angeles CA 90048). All accommodations, services, fare and beverages were provided by the host hotel, and their associates.

Weekend Wanderlust: Kelly Golightly & L*Space Swimwear’s Flamingo Fiesta

L Space straw & paper pineapple decor *Photo by Fred Baby

What’s better than lounging poolside in Palm Springs on a Saturday afternoon? If you ask me, not much.

Can you say Swan Lake? In my L*Space The Ruched One Piece in Black ($158) on Swannie. *Photo by Nikkia Phoenix

That’s why I was delighted to be invited to my friend and fellow blogger, Kelly GoLightly’s & L*Space’s Slim Aarons-inspired Flamingo Fiesta poolside glam event a few Saturdays ago.

A pretty poolside Flamingo Fiesta that would make Slim Aarons proud *Photo by me

 

Upon entering Kelly’s oh-so-chic and darling desert abode, I was greeted with a Lette flamingo macaron cake…

Flamingo Macaron Cake by Lette

flamingo-shaped watermelon delights…

Watermelon Flamingos! *Photo by me

and a bevy of fellow blogger babes.

Not much brighter than a bevy of blogger babes poolside! *Photo by Fred Baby

 

Venturing a little deeper into the deep end of the party, there were custom Skinny Girl & Nekter Juice Bar cocktails, towels by Tide and Pool, cute custom signs by Our Heiday and festive tablecloths by Elephant Landing.

The Festive Flamingo Fiesta tablescape *Photo by me

The BEST part? I was tickled pink to get to wear 2 pieces from L*Space:

The Ruched One Piece (pictured here with my buddy, Swannie, again ($158) – a 70s-reminiscent one piece on just this edge of sexy:

Donning the L*Space Ruched One Piece ($158) with my friend, Swannie, again. We got pretty close.

And the Storm Watch romper ($180) – a little class with sass:

Dawn McCoy, BeautyFrosting, L Space, L*Space, swimwear

My day in the sun. In my L*Space Storm Watch Romper ($180) *Photo by Fred Baby

L*Space swimsuits & covers were coveted, cocktails were shared, sun was soaked (with sunscreen, of course) and laughter was heard often, as it should be. It was, truly, the perfect poolside fete hosted by our hostess-with-the-mostest, Kelly Golightly.

Thanks, Kelly!

The side effect of too much fun in the sun? Laughter. *Photo by Fred Baby

 

xoxo,

BF

BF Asks: What was your favorite poolside detail from the Flamingo Fiesta hosted by that whiz, Kelly Golightly?

 

 

Mani Monday: The Perfect Palm Springs Mani

Mani Monday: The Perfect Palm Springs Mani

Listen, I have to tell you something up front. The mani you see pictured here was directly inspired by my good friend, Kirbie Johnson of PopSugar’s Olive And June mani for Coachella.
Yep, I ripped her off. I plagarized her nails.

But, I mean, COME ON!!!
How could I not when I was invited to one of my favorite fellow blogger Kelly GoLightly’s Flamingo Fiesta with L*Space Swimwear? So I headed to Pampered Hands on Melrose and prettied up my paws.

Prettying up my paws at Pampered Hands with a palm tree! How fabulously festive!

I opted for a little personalization with a punchy peach Essie polish and gold french mani with a palm tree on the right ring finger and a flamingo on the left. I was especially excited about the flamingo art because our hostess-with-the-mostest, Kelly, loves her flamingos.

Look! My polish matches the stitching on my L*Space swimmie cover-up!

So while I’m not a super craftsy girl when it comes to my nails – and I sadly can’t exactly tell you how to do this mani – I urge you to take these pics to a nail salon (or talented friend) who is known for their nail art.

After my mani, I felt 100% Palm Springs-prepared.

 

xoxo,
BF

 

Foodie Friday: Paleta Catering – A Marriage between Healthy & Sinful

Here’s the conundrum.

Picture it. My BeautyFrosting 2nd Bloggiversary. April 16th, 2014.

Just a few of the 70 fab-fashionista-fit-foodie bloggers at the shindig. What-oh what- to do? Photo by Drunken Pixel

You have 70 bloggers as guests. Fashionistas – who are foodies – who are fit – who are fabulous…who also have to be photograph-ready at all times. And you also have cocktails. And, um, cake.

So corndogs and pizza are definitely out of the question. But what you do when you have a houseful of nutritionally-minded mavens who are hungry but don’t want to blow their diets and want to be healthy but don’t want to sacrifice taste?

Well, there’s only one way to turn – my godsend –  Paleta.

The Paleta spread: When Healthy Meets Sinful. Pacific Rim Chicken & Tofu Satay with Spicy Peanut Sauce, Local & Imported Cheese Board, Crudite with Assorted Hummus and Greek Yogurt Dip and Paleta Power-Up Chewy Bites *Photo by Takahiro Watanabe

 

I’ve been a fan of Paleta for a while now – ever since I met Chef Kelly and learned about her passion for pleasing the palate while promoting health through healing. What sort of healing? The kind of healing that comes from eating farm-to-table fresh and filling your body with whole foods.

Paleta Crudité with Lemon Hummus, Sundried Hummus and Greek Yogurt Dip. Um, You know, "Taste the rainbow?" Well, this truly IS tasting the rainbow - but of farm fresh veggies rather than high fructose corn syrup. Photo by Takahiro Watanabe

My guests couldn’t stop gushing about the eats. I was shocked at how much these girls could put back. Sorry, y’all, just speaking the truth here. It was refreshing to see my fashionista friends ACTUALLY EATING at a party. It’s a rarity – like seeing Bigfoot or something. But, yep, that’s how good it was.

Paleta Pacific Rim Thai Chicken & Tofu Satay with Spicy Peanut Sauce *Photo by Takahiro Watanabe

I did have one complaint though. My guests ate ALL the satay and I never got a taste!!! I was craving it so much after hearing everyone rave about it that I actually just ate a spoonful of the spicy peanut sauce. Oh, don’t you judge.

Next up for me? After a month of Coachella, trips to Palm Springs and events galore (see aforementioned cake and cocktails), I’m gonna give Paleta Home Meal Delivery a try. At the very least, I’ll be giving myself the gift of health and at best, I may lose a few pounds so I can be a swimmie siren this summer. Lofty goals, I know, but I really do think Paleta can help me get there!

Thanks so much, Chef Kelly and Paleta for being a BIG part of my very special day!

 

xoxo,
BF

BF Asks: Which Paleta delicacy are you most craving now?

Spring Fling, Indeed! Bebe Spring Fling Hosted by Sydne Summer of Sydne Style

I was honored and delighted to be invited by Bebe and my super stylish blogger friend, Sydne Summer of Sydne Style, to attend the Bebe Spring Fling at the SLS Hotel a few weeks ago to introduce us bloggers to Bebe’s new Spring 2014 collection.

Growing up in Dallas and going to Northpark Mall, I’ve always been a fan of Bebe. But I must admit it had been a while since I’d made a visit. After all, Bebe is so young, hip and fresh – which is why I loved it SO much in my twenties – but how would it apply to a curvy, more classic 36-year-old like myself?

The answer? Effortlessly. I was sweetly surprised to find Bebe pieces this spring that will be permanent wardrobe staples for me. And better yet, these wardrobe staples marry beautifully with pieces I already own. A marriage made in heaven.

For the Bebe Spring Fling event that my dear blogger friend, I chose to don 2 pieces from Bebe’s spring collection.

Spring Fling, indeed! Wearing my Bebe spring picks! Photo by LookbookLA

Bebe Mixed Stripe Midi Skirt ($79)

I have always been a little nervous about wearing horizontal stripes since I’m not a size 2 (and because my mama always warned me against them) but I must say I was floored when I put on my Bebe Mixed Stripe Midi Skirt. It hit in all the right places, curved just like it should and played off my curves leaving me feeling downright sexy. A piece that actually accentuates your curves instead of hiding them? Why, yes please.

Bebe Eve Linen Blazer in Fiery Red ($139)

Hi Modern, meet Classic. I decided to venture outside of my comfort zone and try this fiery Bebe Even Linen Blazer in Fiery Red on for size. Well, I fell in love. Perfect when paired with a matching fiery lip, it makes a statement while most blazers make a whimper. With a mockneck, single snap front closure and 3/4 sleeves, it gave me edge without looking I like I was trying to look edgy.

Then I paired my 2 spring staple pieces with a simple ruchéd black top, turquoise necklace, cherry popsicle-hued wedges, vintage Ted Baker peach handbag and Bebe sunglasses to complete the look. Oh! And don’t forget that L’Oreal Extraordinaire by Colour Riche in Orange Tempo. It sealed the sophisticated spring sexpot look I didn’t even know I was going for.

Sophisticated spring sexpot, you say? Didn't even know that was the look I was going for? Photo by Lookbook LA

Add in a sunglass shopping station, DIY champagne bar, champagne pong…

Let's get classy, people - Champagne pong! Photo by Lookbook LA

a delicious lunch…

Bebe Spring Fling 2014 Lunch at SLS Hotel Beverly Hills - Photo by Lookbook LA

and even more delicious company – and you just created my idea of a perfect Sunday.

 

Thanks, Bebe and Sydne!

All the bloggers in their beautiful Bebe spring 2014 ensembles - Photo by Lookbook LA

***ALL PICTURES ABOVE BY LOOKBOOK LA’s Felix Foto.

xoxo,

BF

BF Asks: What are your spring staples this season? 

 

Looking Back – How BeautyFrosting Was Born

BF Turns 2 Bloggiversary Party Co-Hosted by HomeGoods & Hope At Home - fashion illustration by Kara Endres of Sprinkles in Springs and cake by Magnolia Bakery - Photo by Takahiro Watanabe

When I started this little adventure called BeautyFrosting 2 years ago, I had no idea what I was doing. I had never written a blog. Actually, I had never even really read a blog! I mean they seemed like such a fad and, um, who had the time?
How BeautyFrosting came to be.
Then one day I found myself in Dallas sitting at our fave family spot, Mi Cocina, pondering the possibility of moving home from LA to Dallas. I was at the lowest point of my life having ended a 7-year relationship and having left my job that I’d had for years with Barbra Streisand as her personal shopper. I was down, depressed and my life wasn’t looking so beautiful.
I was searching for an answer and I found it while talking to my mom and one of my oldest, best friends – Kristin Merritt Liles. We were talking about beauty, baking and how much I love connecting with people and came up with the crazy idea of starting a place of positivity and light filled with all of the people and things I love so much. From that little, crazy nugget of an idea, BeautyFrosting was born.
Looking back, I realize that this one little leap of faith gave birth to so much. In the months following, I hit the ground running. I researched blogs that had similar aesthetics to my own, learned about the best ways to start a blog and would spend hours on Pinterest getting very clear about what exactly I wanted BeautyFrosting to be about.

Celebrating BF Turns 2 with dear friends - photo by Drunken Pixel

Introduce yourself to people, be kind and be clear about what you want.
Knowing what I know now, I realize that folks must have thought that I had some major cajones – or maybe they just thought I was naive. I was told repeatedly by brands and other bloggers that I was doing it all wrong – backwards even. I was building the brand and consulting the PR before the blog had even been written or made its online debut. But I was doing it my way and it just made sense to me. After all, why would anyone (brand, person or otherwise) want to work with me if they didn’t even know who I was? Yep, that’s where my southern sensibility comes in. Whether it seemed smart or not, pr agencies and brands that I still work with have told me since that they worked me simply because I seemed charming and honest. So there ya go, folks – charm and honesty are the way to go!
Work with the talented people you already have around you.
Rather than be yet another blog to hit the already-saturated market, I decided to spend 4 months sending emails and making phone calls to hundreds of pr agencies and brands. I decided to pool my brain trust of dear, talented and creative friends to create a blog on a budget that was literally less than $200.
I created a logo and branding template – that would shape the entire blog and brand – thanks to my talented best friend and former roommate, Vanessa York of Shindig Shoppe. After all, who could understand my aesthetic better than my best friend who had lived with me for 2 years? I asked my talented photographer friend, Amy Opoka, if she would take my profile photos for the site and she did an amazing job of executing my vision on a shoestring budget.
This early experience taught me how crucial it is to collaborate with the talents of those you know best. I learned to always ask because the worst that could happen is that they say no. By the way, no one ever said no.

With my BeautyFrosting logo and graphics goddess - and best friend - Vanessa York of Shindig Shoppe - photo by Drunken Pixel

Celebrate every milestone in life.
Ask my mom and she’ll tell you – I love celebrating and I love me a party. Even as a child, I would try to find reasons to celebrate every occasion. My Barbies were getting married? Let’s throw a wedding! I got an A on a test? Let’s have a tea party! I made the cheerleading squad? Let’s have a tex-mex party! So in true Dawn-fashion, I decided to throw a Cupcakes and Cocktails debut party here at my house to celebrate the debut of the blog before anyone had even seen it. Besides being a precious affair, we brought out the laptop and let friends and former coworkers get a sneak peek at what BeautyFrosting would be. I really think a lot of things got rolling because of the choice to celebrate this little milestone. And celebrating milestones is a great way to remember the gratitude every step along the way.

Celebrate the milestones - and little victories - along the way - Photo by Drunken Pixel

Most important lesson learned on this journey? Don’t be afraid to be a fool.
Was I fearful of starting a brand new chapter of my life? Hell, yes. But you get past the fear, accept that you may indeed be a fool and get past yourself. I asked pr companies to send samples before I even knew what that meant. I asked friends to devote hours of their time and because I believed in this so much, they believed in it and wanted to be part of it, as well. And I realized that it was more important to appear confident than it was to have 1 million readers. I have never been more proud of anything…and that’s coming from someone who was never raised to be proud. This blog has literally changed my life and I am so much better because of it.
Most Importantly…Thank YOU.
I know that I am nothing without all of you guys – my readers and social media followers – finding interest in what I write about, take pictures of and who I am. So, I want to thank each and every one of you who read this every day, like my pictures on Instagram and Facebook and tweet at me. (By the way, 2 years ago, I had no idea about what any of that was – that’s how much things can change in 2 years.) I have a feeling that the next 2 years will bring even more exciting change and I hope that you will be there for my journey every step of the way. You have made my hearts so full.

Cutting the cake and celebrating 2 years of BeautyFrosting - thanks to YOU!! Photo by Takahiro Watanabe

xoxo,
BF
BF Asks: What’s your favorite feature on BeautyFrosting? What would you like to see more of?

High-Low 10-21-13: Urban Remedy Daycation & Letting Go of What Does Not Serve Me

HIGH: Urban Remedy Daycation with my fellow bloggers & tastemakers in Malibu

Last Tuesday, I had one of the most amazing days I’ve ever had. And it was all thanks to Urban Remedy and my friend – and fellow blogger – Jamie Stone of Queen Of The Quarter Life Crisis.

Jamie & Urban Remedy invited a host of bloggers and tastemakers to a mecca in Malibu- that was beyond divine – for a “Daycation”.

With my fellow bloggers, Roxy Manning of RedCarpetRoxy, Jamie Stone of Queen of The Quarter Life Crisis, Sydne Summer of SydneStyle and Rachel Dickhute of EverythingHauler

What did our “daycation” consist of?

Well, it started with being picked up at my house at 8:45 am and the ride along the coast – thanks to my driver – was perfection.

8:45 am pickup - courtesy of Urban Remedy - started the day off right!

 

Champagne-sipping while sitting in a swing chair was next…

Just a swingin'...and a-sippin'....

followed by more swinging…

I couldn't get enough of swinging...it took me right back to my childhood and I felt like I was in NeverNeverLand!

 

…cohorting with chickens – especially the fuzzy-Yeti-chicken with whom we were all obsessed and…

Sipping some chia with chickens - not your normal LA day...

(my favorite!) sitting in a teepee with my fellow guests, getting to know – and support – one another through an ancient ritual known as “circling”.

Teepee time - I never knew circlng could be filled with healing and self-discovery

 

We all agreed that the experience profoundly affected us and that we felt forever connected to one another because of this rare, self-celebrating and self-healing day.

With my fellow bloggers & tastemakers in the teepee

 

It was not your normal blogger event and I could not be more grateful to have been a part of it. So – again – thank you, Urban Remedy & Jamie!

A bonus? The next day, I enjoyed my Urban Remedy juice while baking pumpkin cupcakes. The perfect breakfast to  feed my body after feeding my soul the day before.

 

Urban Remedy Soothe No. 4 juice - with celery, cucumber, apple, ginger, parsley, lemon & more!

 

LOW: Letting Go – “Let go of anything that’s with you and not serving you.”

LOW: I am ready to let go of...

While this wasn’t a typical low, it qualifies as a low as it brought some pain before it brought some deeper discovery for me. In our circle in the teepee, we were each asked to write down on a piece of paper something we were ready to let go of. In fact the direction was, “Let go of anything that’s with you and not serving you.”

Yikes. This was a doozy. And for me, up came a lot of insecurity and fear that I needed – I should say, NEED – to let go of. So I wrote down all of the things that  don’t serve me, tore it up into pieces and let it go to literally be burned. Andrea of The Art of Circling – our circling guide – let us know that there was great power with the full moon that would come a few days later. So letting go of this baggage felt blessed in a way. And I feel a little lighter now as a result.  I also promised myself to counter every negative thought I have or say about myself with a positive one. Folks, that one is a bit trickier. But I’m trying. I have been made aware of my weaknesses and I am trying to turn them into strengths every day. It’s really all we can do in this thing called life.

 

xoxo,

BF 

BF Asks: What was your High-Low this week?  And what are you ready to let go of? What’s not serving you?

*So what exactly is a High-Low, you ask? High-Low is the BEST & WORST part of your day, week, month, etc. I started this tradition with friends & family after I discovered it through a movie decades ago. Not only is it useful for reflection sake but it is also an excellent way to communicate with your spouse, kids or friends over the dinner table. By introducing this tradition to folks, parents have told me that their kids have opened up more and friends have told me that their spouses have become more communicative. Try it for yourself and let me know what your experience is!