You might have seen one of these colorful African wax print skirts around town and if you haven’t then get to know Francis + Benedict. A local brand founded by visionary Katie Walters who started the company a couple of years ago while traveling on a mission with her church in Togo, Africa. She quickly discovered there was a way to sustain their community by giving the Togolese women the job of sewing skirts that would be imported and sold online here in America. Their skills support projects that benefit orphans, widows, and those suffering in poverty. The beautiful skirts come in an array of prints and full length to mid length styles. You can shop their collection online and follow them on Instagram @francisandbenedict to see their pop up schedule at their new studio at 218b King Street on the 2nd floor. They’ll also be having a Sip and Shop on Thursday from 5-7pm at Cannonborough Collective at 185 A St. Philip Street.
If you sign up for Francis + Benedict‘s email list here you will be entered to win a free skirt! These skirts are perfect gift that gives back, and I’m so proud to share their story to spread the message.
This necklace by Made in the Deep South is one of the many treasures you’ll find from Woodhouse Day Spa Mt. Pleasant. Kimberly Powell, the owner, curates the best finds in her spa boutique from skincare, makeup, accessories, and gifty items. Knock out your Christmas shopping at Woodhouse Day Spa tomorrow night from 5:30-7:30pm at their Holiday Open House. Enjoy festive bites, drinks, special promotions and giveaways at 725 Johnnie Dodds Blvd. If you can’t make it in you can always buy a gift card online here, and if you spend at least $350 on a gift certificate you’ll get a super soft throw blanket for free!
Arletet turtleneck in dark purple $145 from J. McLaughlin // The Colmar Maxi $128 from Francis + Benedict // Necklace by Made in the Deep South $238 from Woodhouse Day Spa Mt. Pleasant // Iris – Acetate sunglasses $465 from Friedrich’s Optik
Friedrich’s Optik always combines high style and glamour with their quality frames. The style I’m wearing made famous by Iris Apfel comes in every color of the rainbow and in both sunglasses and eyeglasses.
Top to Bottom: Caroline $465 (Acetate), Iris $465 (Acetate), Jackie $1950 (Horn & Silk), Marilyn $1950 (Horn & Silk), Bruno $1550 (Horn), Jack $1550 (Horn) from Friedrich’s Optik
I’m big fan of clothing that has movement, so this skirt by J. McLaughlin stole my heart!
Tune into Lowcountry Live this Friday at 10am for gift ideas from Woodhouse Day Spa, and Cannonborough Collective which carries Francis + Benedict, as well as Motherland Essentials, Park & Madison Candles, Borough, and art and stationary from Jenny Batt and Island Haus Paperie.
Photography by Clifford Pate
As I grow older, skincare has been become my top priority. Your skin is your body’s largest organ and it’s important to make sure your nourishing it and keeping it hydrated with the best products on the planet. I’m grateful that I’m exposed to very knowledgeable people in this market from my dermatologist Dr. Marguerite Germain, shopping at the organic skincare boutique Wildcraft, to meeting the owner of the organic skincare line True Botanicals. The gift of radiant skin is always a great idea and I’ve picked out a few of my favorite items.
Back in October I attended a True Botanicals event hosted by the beautiful all natural beauty blogger Jessica Morse of Bare Beauty at The Dewberry Hotel. The founder of True Botanicals, Hilary Peterson was on a tour to spread their all organic goodness and it was so enlightening to hear about their ethos. Their certified organic products made from botanical extracts contain antioxidants, vitamins, essential fatty acids, and are the most heavenly scented because of the essential oils. You can feel the quality when you use their products and it feels good to use them because they are MADE SAFE™, Cruelty free, Non-GMO, and Gluten free.
I love the toners because it gives my skin an invigorating boost that it needs after I wash it, plus it reduces blemishes, minimizes pore size, and plumps my skin. Their anti-aging Cellular Repair Serum and Pure Radiance Oil keep my skin feeling hydrated while leaving my skin dewy and glowing. You might have heard the many benefits of Vitamin C in your skincare products – from boosting collagen production, to diminishing the signs of aging, to correcting dark spots this is my new daily regimen. I mix the Vitamin C Booster with the Cellular Repair Serum, RENEW to stimulate collagen production and even my skin tone. I use the Resurfacing Moisture Mask to exfoliate especially in the winter time when you need to slough off that dead skin. The Nourishing Wash & Nourishing Lotion infuses a woodsy citrus scent while it gives your skin a youthful glow because it fights free radical damage with potent antioxidants. I’ve become obsessed with their products because I’ve seen my skin improve instantly.
Owner Holly Thorpe of Wildcraft stocks her shelves with a highly curated mix of handcrafted, organic, cruelty-free lines of skincare, cosmetics, fragrance, haircare, bodycare + wellness blends. Holly has researched and done her homework because every product she carries from Charleston to California are ethically + sustainably sourced. Her shop located in South Windmere of West Ashley offers the right mix of product without being too overwhelming. Here are some of products that are perfect to splurge on yourself or that special someone who deserves some pampering.
Axiology Natural Organic Lipstick in Attitude. 100% vegan. Attitude glides on as a hot, hibiscus-pink pop with a blush of blue undertones. Popular among both world-travelers and urbanites, this color evokes lustrous Indian saris and bright neon billboards—and will keep your lips loaded with moisture $30 from Wildcraft
MCMC Fragrances in Hunter – With tobacco absolute, organic Bourbon vanilla and balsam fir, this fragrance is best worn with a flannel shirt. $95 eu de parfum & $45, roll-on perfume oil from Wildcraft
Bless by Leahlani Beauty Balm. Makeup remover, moisturizer & lip treatment. Rich, organic butters coalesce with the most lush organic and cold pressed beauty oils to nurture and bless your skin for an unparalleled softness. Bless is a nutrient dense silken moisturizer that will soften the skin and deeply nourish the complexion. Infused with nutrient dense, organic and cold pressed oils, Bless will help to reduce inflammation, strengthen and protect your precious complexion $49 from Wildcraft
Leahlani Meli Glow Illuminating Nectar Mask. Say aloha to a soft, supple and more even-toned complexion with Meli GLOW. This illuminating nectar fusion mask, filled with enzyme and vitamin rich tropical fruits, nutrient dense beauty oils, skin moisturizing and plumping hyaluronic acid and stimulating clays steeped in the creamy fusion of organic Hawaiian nectar. She will deeply nourish and strengthen the barrier of your skin, delivering a bountiful dose of active enzymes and antioxidant rich oils to each cell on your precious face. Plump skin cells, deeply nourish and gently exfoliate the skin, helping to promote a more even skin tone while unveiling that ‘aloha GLOW’ $49 from Wildcraft
Leahlani Kalmina Coconut Cream Cleansing Powder. Your cleansing ritual will never be the same. Silken coconut milk, soothing oatmeal, vitamin and antioxidant rich tropical fruits, softening clays and organic vanilla beans come together to create the most exotic and opulent cleansing powder you have ever experienced. Organic hibiscus flower, wildcrafted camu camu fruit and water activated vitamin C are a powerhouse trio working harmoniously together to boost collagen production and even out the complexion $48 from Wildcraft
Leahlani Siren Serum. Radiant and skin-brightening serum infused with vitality boosting micro-algae and organic and cold pressed oils rich in Vitamin C + A. Luminous and youth enhancing blend of Sea Buckthorn CO2, carrot seed, geranium, jasmine, rose, ylang ylang and sweet citrus will absorb beautifully into your skin $44 from Wildcraft
Josh Rosebrook Vital Balm Cream. A uniquely effective, powerful moisturizer that combines the occlusive, breathable benefits of a natural balm with the absorption and luxury finish of a cream. This multi-benefit moisturizer supports true skin health and beauty by facilitating maximum cellular hydration, repair and restoring vital skin function $47 from Wildcraft
Josh Rosebrook Advanced Hydration Mask. Designed to help replenish and retain maximum skin cell hydration this unique treatment can be used daily to elevate skin appearance, vitality and function. Lock in moisture, plump, condition, and improve skin circulation which protects and supports healthy dermal function and slows skin decline. Removal the mask without water rinsing, which helps slow moisture loss and assists in maximum cellular hydration and retention $66 from Wildcraft
Follow them on Instagram @shop_wildcraftchs for updates products and events. They’ll be hosting a couple fun events next weekend – 12/15&16: Plants, Planters, Wreaths, and Illustrations Pop Up with Gertie’s Goods. 12/15: 11am-2pm Brow sugaring with Rock Beauty.
Photography by Clifford Pate
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If you live in Charleston with kids and you’ve never heard of Wonder Works Toys, then your living under a rock. One of the nation’s most successful, independent, locally owned toy stores is right here in Charleston, and Christine Osborne is the mastermind behind it all. With the first store opening up 27 years ago, it has now expanded to locations in Kiawah, Mt. Pleasant, West Ashley, downtown, as well as a thriving online business. Christine is a very passionate advocate for supporting local businesses and is always generous with her time to talk to aspiring entrepreneurs including toy makers. Her stores are an incubator for local authors, inventors, and manufacturers of toys. It’s like Disney World for my boys and they beg me to go to Wonder Works whenever we’re in the area of one of the stores. My oldest Mateo realizes the importance of shopping local because he appreciates the knowledgeable and helpful staff, and has met Christine on numerous occasions. Making the connection with the owner of a business makes more of an impact and you want to support them to help the community grow.
Mateo and Sebastian had a blast testing out all of the hot new toys at Wonder Works. What I loved the most is that it got them outside and off of their devices. Their favorite was the LASER X DOUBLE BLASTER PACK ($49.99) . Now you can play laser tag in your own backyard day or night. My boys could play this for hours!
Wonder Works also has gifts adults can appreciate as well. This blanket made by local company Charleston Green is the softest thing you’ll ever touch and it’s made out of recycled bottles. Do your part by helping to save the environment while you snuggle up. I also love that it’s reversible.
The PICTAR ONE PLUS ($65.99) attaches to your iphone so you can shoot it like a camera. The easy app gives you options to shoot like a DLSR camera does and the video quality is pretty amazing. Mateo got the swing of it quicker than I did of course.
My boys loved playing the SLIMEBALL DODGETAG and I loved it because it was only $24.99!
The PARTY 2 GO GOLD MICROPHONE SET ($49.99) is tons of fun for the whole family. The microphone hooks up by bluetooth and plays anything from your phone with the built in speaker. It also comes with a battery operated disco ball. Who needs a karaoke bar when you have this set up at home?
THE AMAZING STAR CUBE PUZZLE ($15.99) is a toy that I found myself playing with too because it’s the new version of the Rubik’s Cube. It’s a 3D puzzle that’s perfect for the kids who love fidget spinners and makes a great stocking stuffer.
View more to see what’s on our wish list from Wonder Works Toys and a Q & A with Christine Osborne.
Photography by Libby Williams
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With all of the holiday parties this season it might seem hard to navigate. Well I have an easy solution – why not shop for your Christmas gifts while you attend the party? There’s a few events happening over the next couple of weeks in the Upper King Street area that are worth popping in for. This dress which is only $58 is from Dandy Boutique on 43 John Street. Their annual Christmas party is on December 15th from 4-8pm and they’re celebrating with sweets from Lu Lu’s Bakery, store wide sales, and a GIVEAWAY worth $350! The vintage earrings are from Candy Shop Vintage on 9 Cannon Street. They’re having their Holiday Sip ‘N Shop this Friday from 5-8pm with cocktails, treats from Sugar Bakeshop, free hair braiding from Olivia Banks, and so much more!
Mitchell Hill is having their annual Popcorn Garland party at 438 King Street this Thursday from 5-9pm. The group show featuring the work of Mitchell Hill resident + guest artists are under $500, unique gifts that are one of a kind. This lifestyle boutique showcases the most beautiful and eye-catching art you can find in Charleston. The gallery space is the perfect backdrop to highlight all of the gorgeous furniture, lighting, and home accessories. I love this painting by Lisa Shimko who is a local artist that has been supported by the gallery from the beginning. Here are some of my favorite finds at Mitchell Hill that are the perfect gifts.
BEACHES by Gray Malin $40, Artist: Sara Pittman
Artist: Kerry Steele, Ballon dog banks inspired by Jeff Koons $70
Art of the Bar Cart” book $22.95, Black + Gold Malachite Patterned Tumblers $12 each, Splatter Egg Box $58, “Full dose” Coaster Sets $68, Brass Bar Tools, set of 5 $157
Animal artist: David Ryden, Naughty Housewives + Domesticated Super Hero’s by Pop Artist Nicole Heere, Found object fish on stand: Michigan artist, Steve Palmer $325 , Leather Aprons from the Netherlands $98-$196
Marble + Brass tic tac toe set $195
This is also the season to think about those who are less fortunate. Stop by Dandy Boutique from now until December 20th with canned goods for the Lowcountry Food Bank. When you donate, you can select an item from their SALE section for FREE!
Photography by Kim Graham
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When your shopping for the person that seems to have it all, Vieuxtemps is your place to find that special gift like this Champagne Saber. Why pop the bottle the traditional way when you can slay it and look super cool? Yes, this the lower King boutique stocks up on unique gifts for everyone on your list, even the kiddos. Owned by Natalie Taylor this local shop is known for their generous offerings of china and crystal, popular among bridal registries. Her diverse selection of gifty items might have you overwhelmed at first, but take your time to take it all in. Here are some of my favorite finds at every price range.
Bracelet Flask $58
Gingerbread Advent Calendar, pre-filled with toys and candy $98
Made in Denmark Mice, toothfairy $36 and hero in a suitcase $32
Louis Sherry Chocolate Boxes, 12 piece $35 and 2 piece $8.50
Gold and Black bar set $162 and hand etched glasses (Charleston Map or Christmas Sweater) $14 each
Hollywood Dogs leather bound book $100, Choupette – the story of Karl Lagerfeld’s cat $9.98, Modern Aristocrats $60, The Gospel According to Chanel Leather Bound Book $85
So when your ready to knock out people on your Christmas list or need a hostess gift, swing by Vieuxtemps at 180 King Street. Follow them on Instagram and Facebook to stay updated with all of the great product they have coming in. Also, from now until December 12th they’re collecting toys for Toys for Tots and offering 10% off when you bring something in.
View more for a little Q & A with Natalie and more gift ideas!
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‘Tis the season for endless parties and reasons to get dressed up. Finding the perfect holiday outfit might take hours of searching, but since I’m always popping in and out of boutiques I’m here to do all of the scouting for you. This outfit which looks like a dress is actually a two-piece crop top and wide legged pants from Magnifique Boutique on Market Street. This shop stocks a great selection of women’s clothing and accessories at all price ranges. Owner Onna Mack recently launched her online store so now you can shop in the comforts of home. Take advantage of their Cybermonday deal with 20% off site wide and free shipping when you use code BLACKFRIDAY at checkout.
This wine bag is the perfect hostess gift and at $22.98 you might want to scoop one up for yourself too. You don’t want to miss out on Magnifique’s holiday party on Dec. 5th for an evening of cocktails and shopping, beats by Dj Deirdre Zahl of Candy Shop Vintage, plus giveaways including a $500 gift card! Festivities are from 5-8pm at 92 North Market Street.
These jewels are by Barracuda Moon, made with love locally by Sydney Pope. Her ocean inspired accessories are made to layer but are just as gorgeous worn alone to make a statement. She up-cycles sea glass and other findings with 14kt gold to create one of a kind pieces that have a touch of luxe. Sydney knows the importance of giving back and a portion of all online sales are donated to the Polaris Project, a charity devoted to ending human trafficking. Why not give a gift that gives back this season? Take advantage of their Cybermonday sale with 15% off with code GIVELOVE17. Barracuda Moon will be on the move over the next couple of weeks with 3 upcoming pop-up shops including the Daniel Island Holiday Festival at Volvo Stadium on December 2nd from 11am-4pm, Ro Sham Beaux at 493 King Street on December 9th from 12-4pm, and Thrifters & Drifters at The Royal American 970 Morrison Dr. on December 17th from 12-5pm.
The sunglasses are from iconic eyewear purveyors Friedrich’s Optik at 194 King Street. The German company has been around since 1816 and has made frames for the most influential women in the world including Jackie O. and Iris Apfel. These frames I’m wearing are actually called the Jackie, named after the legendary Jackie O. Visit their lower King shop for both retro and classic frames that can be worn as eyeglasses or sunglasses.
If your wondering about my glow I’m wearing Luminous Complexion Fluid in EVA by Gressa Lumiére from Wildcraft. This serum is adaptable to any skin tone and can be used on your cheeks, eye lids or lips for a quick tint. I used it on my cheekbones for a highlighter effect. Wildcraft is an organic skincare and makeup boutique in South Windmere in West Ashley. I could spend hours in there trying on product and learning about all of the amazing things it does to your skin, but more about that later. Stay tuned for more outfit and gift ideas!
Good As Gold Donovan Top $136.98 and Good as Gold Dance Pant $198.98 by Show Me Your Mumu, Side Dish Wine Bag $22.98 from Magnifique Boutique // The Jackie sunglasses in acetate $465 from Friedrich’s Optik // Sleeping Moon Necklace $108, Via Necklace $136, Golden Sea Glass Pendant $160, Ra Earrings $139 from Barracuda Moon // Gressa Lumiére: Luminous Complexion Fluid in EVA $28 from Wildcraft
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Shopping can be a daunting task around the holidays, but it doesn’t always have to be. Why not knock out everyone on your list at Freshfields Village with over 25 shops to choose from and more than a few restaurants to refuel at? The newly renovated J. McLaughlin store has lots of cute clothes to keep you cozy like this one I’m wearing. I’m obsessed with this leopard print coat, it’s my new go to!
Pella Faux Fur Coat in Leopard $348 ,Virgo Sweater $198 ,Watson Jeans $178.00 from J. McLaughlin // Mo Eyewear Geek $175 from Village Optical in Freshfields Village // Jewelry by Julie Vos from GDC Home // “Brody” platform oxford by Summit White Mountain Shoes $148.95 from Nordstrom
Indigo Books always has a great selection of books for the avid reader, collector, and loads of fun activity books for both kids and adults.
GDC Home is also known for it’s posh home furnishings, but they also carry a great selection of jewelry from brands like Julie Voss, seasonal decor, and books.
Elizabeth Stuart Design is another great resource for eclectic home goods and hostess gifts. This jewelry by Tai jewelry which is handmade in Thailand and employs and supports some of the finest artisans in the country. The designer is involved with multiple charities both in her native Thailand and the United States.
These Zodax Modern Morocco Glass Perfume Bottles from Elizabeth Stuart Design are what else you can find in the chic boutique.
Sugar Snap Pea newly opened outpost in Kiawah has all the freshest goods for babies to kids.
Freshly Picked Moccasin Honey Bee $60, Appaman Patience Hat in Violet $34.99, Freshly Picked Moccasin Heirloom in Blush $60 from Sugar Snap Pea
Jelly Cat Solange Swan Rose Medium $32.50 from Sugar Snap Pea
Get your shopping done this Saturday while you enjoy the Freshfields Village Holiday Festival from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Free children’s activities include face painting by Cupcake and Company Children’s Entertainment, balloon twisting by Carol’s Balloon Art, inflatable games and rides on the Mechanical Reindeer with Charleston Fun Factory. There will also be a variety of complimentary holiday crafts with Teacups and Trucks, LLC and activity booths. Enjoy live music throughout the afternoon along with delicious treats available for purchase from local food vendors.
Plus, Santa will be in the Village from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm!
Photography by Libby Williams
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