Explore Charleston Takoever Tuesday at CFW

Today the fashion marathon begins as Charleston Fashion Week heads into their 11th year.  Five nights of runway shows, shopping under the tents, and street style popping in Marion Square.  I’m excited to kick start the week by taking over the Explore Charleston Instagram and sharing backstage moments and runway debuts on their stories.  As a judge for the emerging designer competition I’ll give you an all access pass to one of the most anticipated events in Charleston.

I put together this fun outfit from Hampden Clothing, a local boutique that’s celebrating 10 years on King Street and recently underwent some serious renovations.   I collaborated with Explore Charleston on a guest blog post on where to shop locally if you want to get decked out for Charleston Fashion Week. I featured local retailers like Mosa and Gwynn’s of Mt. Pleasant who will be showing at Fashion Week, as well as Shirtini who is one of my favorites on Lower King Street.

Follow me on Instagram at @ExploreCharleston to get a live experience of Charleston Fashion Week tonight around 6pm!

Pleats Shirt Dress in Navy by Alani $495, Sandal in Natural White by Marni $860, Medium Hava Top Handle Bag By Proenza Schouler $1,950

Photography by Clay Austin

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Maris DeHart Style Makers at CFW

As Charleston Fashion Week heads into their 11th year next week, the local fashion event is evolving and expanding their presence at Marion Square. Modern lifestyle boutique Maris DeHart will have their own “Style Maker” tent adjacent to the Style Lounge where they’ll be showcasing emerging southern designers for every night at Charleston Fashion Week.  Featured designers such as Hart Studio, Catie Curran, Naked Eyes, Ellia Wang; plus local makers Element Candles and artist Sam Rueter will have their jewelry, artisanal goods, and art available to shop.  If that wasn’t enough, the debut of CFW 2016 emerging designer Lisa HoangMaris DeHart clothing collection will also be available to buy.  Don’t miss out on meeting the makers as well as a book signing on Wednesday March 15th with Julianne Taylor of DesignHer.  

Maris DeHart founder and buyer Alden DeHart has a keen eye for unique brands and knows how to hunt down emerging talent in the south.  Her local boutique carries attainable luxury goods from art, clothes, home decor, and accessories.

Maris DeHart is also participating in the Dress to Room Pairings at the Charleston Symphony Orchestra League’s Designer Showhouse starting on March 16th.  Each room will be designed by an influential interior designer and participating stores and fashion designers will be paired with the room showcasing a look that reflects the room.  The Designer Showhouse is celebrating its 40th year and they are going big by partnering up with with Traditional Home and Charleston Magazine with all of the proceeds benefitting the Charleston Symphony Orchestra and fund CSOL® Music Scholarships.  If you appreciate interior design and fashion design, this event is one not to be missed!

Don’t forget to watch Lowcountry Live this Friday at 10am to see some sneak peeks of what’s in store at Charleston Fashion Week  featuring Maris DeHartLeo & Sage, and Dandy Boutique!

Top by Style Mafia $124, Pants by Do + Be $114, bracelet $200 and bar ring $ 195 by Naked Eyes, twisting branches ring $78, sculptural ring $95, and earrings $88 by Catie Curran, bag by Ellia Wang $595 all from Maris DeHart

Photography by Clifford Pate

Diggin’ on that Dandy

The yearly style frenzy, Charleston Fashion Week is exactly one week away and I’m so excited for the fashion marathon to begin.  5 nights of runways shows featuring emerging designers, established designers and local boutiques including one of my favorite stores, Dandy Boutique who will be on stage for their first time.  If you’ve read my blog before you know that I’m a long time collaborator with Holly McGetrick, the owner of Dandy Boutique.  I’m teaming up with her to style her retro-infused show next Tuesday night at Charleston Fashion Week.

To kick of Charleston Fashion Week  I’ll be featuring Dandy Boutique, Leo & Sage, and Maris DeHart on Lowcountry Live this Friday at 10am.  Tune in to see some sneak peek looks that they’ll be showing under the tents at Marion Square.

We couldn’t resist a photo op with this ’66 Mustang from Dream Classic Rentals.  Our friend Pierre has quite a collection of hot rods that literally stop people in their tracks. I think this should be the official mascot of Dandy, don’t you agree?

After our little vintage car shoot we popped into Carmella’s Dessert Bar on East Bay, and we were literally in for a treat, I mean countless treats. If your a dessert lover like me, Holly, and Libby of Plate South are, then you’ll feel like you’ve died and gone to dessert heaven.  Every sweet you can imagine, and other ones you didn’t even know existed live here at Carmella’s. On top of the pastry case filled with daily gourmet desserts, they always serve Gelato, Gelato Paninis (their version of an ice cream sandwich), 4 different versions of Waffles and Ice Cream, and a complete savory menu to balance out your sweet tooth.


This beauty right here is stuffed with maple bacon gelato, topped with whipped cream and chocolate covered bacon.  If you like Chicken & Waffles, then you’ll be a fan of this one. View more if you want to see more of these decadent desserts at Carmella’s Dessert Bar and fun pics with the Dandymobile.

Wearing Emily and Fin jacket $86, Emily and Fin shorts $60, Sunglasses $20, BC Footwear shoes // Holly wears Traffic People dress $86, sunglasses and bags all from Dandy Boutique

Photography by Libby Williams, Vintage 1966 Mustang from Dream Classic Rentals, on location at Carmella’s Dessert Bar

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Tres Chic

I can’t believe March is already here which means that Charleston Fashion Week is right around the corner.  5 nights of runway shows including emerging designers and local boutiques like Tres Carmen will be showing on the runway.   Tres Carmen opened up last year in Freshfields Village and more shops and restaurants are slated to open very soon, which means more reason to take that day trip out to Kiawah.  I love spending the afternoon at Freshfields Village in Kiawah to shop, eat, and just relax because it really is an escape from the hustle and bustle.

Every season Freshfields Village hosts a Sip & Stroll  where every 3rd Thursday of the month you can visit participating stores for light snacks and sips while enjoying special events, sales, and promotions inside the shops. The next one is on March 16th from 4:00 to 7:00 pm and you can check out all of the participating stores and sales here.

This little outfit is from Tres Carmen in Freshfields Village and I’m obsessed with everything I’m wearing starting with the python purse and choker by Taxidermy. The new colors for spring are incredible, especially this sand color JW bag, it’s the new neutral.

Can we talk about these shoes?  I’ve been wearing them almost everyday since I got them and I don’t want to take them off!  They’re by Summit by White Mountain and are designed and made in Italy.  But you don’t have to be scared that they’re crazy expensive, they’re  only $148.95 from Nordstrom.  I actually discovered them on Instagram and I’m so happy to know that they not only make beautiful shoes, but there are all about sustainability. They reduce their waste, carbon, and energy output while educating their employees on environmental protection and cleaner production initiatives.

My other obsession?  My lash extensions by Becca at Simply Mitten Beauty Bar.  I hate putting on eye makeup and the time it takes me in the morning.  I’m the type of person that likes to get up and go.  Now that I have these incredibly thick and long lashes it takes me 5 minutes to get ready.  On most days I just wear my tinted Anti-Photo Aging Sunscreen by Germain Dermatology and I’m out the door!  It’s incredible what longer lashes can do.  I won’t miss the days of taking forever to get my cat-eye liner perfect, or curling my lashes, or layering on the mascara.  Now I’m Fashion Week ready without the hassle of spending time on my makeup!

Top $245, gaucho pants $275 by Nicole Miller, Rose gold flamingo earrings by Ash Hoffman$265, sunglasses by Quay $45, python choker $95 and JW mini python bag $1,295 all from Tres Carmen at Freshfields Village // “Brody” platform oxford $148.95 from Nordstrom

Photography by Clifford Pate

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Gallivanting at the Gibbes

I recently visited the oldest art museum in Charleston, the newly renovated Gibbes Museum of Art.  I’m a lover of art and I believe the space that showcases it should be just as beautiful.  After undergoing a 2 year renovation the museum is a shining beacon in architecture preservation.  The tri-level building houses a large collection of art spanning over four hundred years including contemporary art that rivals any collection at The Whitney.

Other than the incredible art that covers the walls, I love that this is a museum for the people.  They offer art classes for both adults and children, hands on workshops like hand loom weaving, film screenings, and their annual Art of Design coming up on March 3rd featuring HGTV’s Vern Yip.

Classic portraits get a modern twist when displayed against a purple hued wall.

Another major addition is Cafe Gibbes which serves yummy artisanal sandwiches, salads, and sides.  There’s always room for more dining in Charleston, especially when the food is this good.

A Tiffany-style glass dome ceiling was one of my favorite details in the Gibbes.

With all of fabulous events that happen in Charleston, the Gibbes Museum of Art is one of the most sought after venues.  Hosting everything from Charleston Wedding Week to Graffiti in the Garden, the outdoor space boasts an enchanting setting.  This beautiful dress by Mason Hosker would be perfect for one of their formal affairs.  I had to take it for spin from their boutique that’s a few blocks away on State Street.  New designer on the block Danielle Hosker opened up her shop in December and is taking the city by storm.  Her pretty and sophisticated frocks are red carpet ready with couture quality that raises the bar in our local fashion scene.  I’m so excited for her runway debut on Friday March 17th at Charleston Fashion Week.

This double sided antler box clutch by Taxidermy available at Germain Dermatology was the perfect pairing with this dress.  Lizard skin on one side, python on the other, you can’t go wrong when you get two bags in one.  These statement rings from Gold Creations are exactly what you need for a night out on the town.

Mckenzie dress $1,050 by Mason Hosker // Double sided antler box $695 by Taxidermy available at Germain Dermatology // 14k gold rose petal earrings $1,200, 14k gold green amethyst and malachite ring $1,200, 14k gold polished scalloped dome ring $700 from Gold Creations // Sam Edelman Women’s Audrey Dress Sandal $109.98 from Amazon // Quay sunglasses $50 from Pac Sun

Photography by Libby Williams

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Bella Charleston

Picking out a bridesmaids dress these days is not what it use to be.  Gone are the days of spending hundreds of dollars on a dress you’ll never wear again.  Now girls have so many great options from beaded and sequined dresses fit for a ball, to easy separates that you can mix and match with your everyday wardrobe for extra mileage.  Step into Bella Bridesmaids and it’s a dream come true for any bride who wants lots of options for her party.  You can shop a dizzying array of dresses and separates by Theia, Monique Lhuillier, Jenny Yoo, Amsale, and Adrianna Papell just to name a few.  

The owner of their Charleston location, Allison Long, opened up her shop over 10 years ago downtown on King Street and is currently on John Street in the Upper King Street area. She stocks 20+ designer collections with over 1,000 dresses sampled in store.  Her boutique has become a great resource not just for wedding parties but also prom, graduation dresses, and black tie affairs.  With over 50 Bella Bridesmaids nationwide it’s so easy to accommodate bridal parties.

Allison is always promoting her store with fun fashion shows, collaborations with other boutiques, and trunk shows.  They’re currently having a Bella pop up shop at Maddison Row’s new location on Friday and Saturday.  Pop by 189 C St. Phillip Street to browse their gorgeous selection.

Tomorrow’s my big Bridal segment on Lowcountry Live where I’ll be featuring bridal looks that are red carpet ready.  With the Oscars right around the corner I’ll be featuring dresses that are fit for a Hollywood A-lister, but also perfect for your wedding day and beyond. Tune in tomorrow at 10am to see designs by Emily Kotarski, Mason Hosker, and Hermosa Jewelry alongside dresses from Bridal House of Charleston and Bella Bridesmaids.

Headpiece by Emma Katzka at Emily Kotarski, Jewelry by Hermosa Jewelry, Bouquet by Frampton’s Flowers

Photography by Clay Austin, Model – Christina Zapolski at Directions USA, Styling by Andrea Serrano, Makeup and Hair by  Mac Does Hair, on location at The Gadsden House

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Garden Of Eden

The newest Charleston designer on the scene is Danielle Hosker of Mason Hosker.  She opened her flagship boutique on State Street in the French Quarter in December and has quickly made a name for herself.  Her dresses have been seen on the red carpet on Asher Paul with the director of LaLa Land at the Golden Globes and SAG award winner Uzo Aduba of Orange is the New Black.  Structured silhouettes in luxe fabrics that have a touch of vintage glamour is what you’ll find in her boutique.

Once you slip on one of her dresses you’ll know that fit is everything.  Danielle is a ballet-trained dancer who co-founded Dance FX, and has a natural sense of how fabric should fit and move with the female form.  Her past experience with interior design has beautifully translated in her collection with the textiles she uses.  The colorful and pattern friendly dresses create whimsical vignettes throughout her store.

The occasional dresses at Mason Hosker are perfect for galas, weddings, cocktail parties, and mother of the bride.  You’ll find couture quality, original designs, and classic styles that can live in your wardrobe forever.

Stay tuned for more of Mason Hosker on Lowcountry Live this Friday at 10am, a runway show on Friday March 17th at Charleston Fashion Week, and her grand opening party in March.

Headpiece byEmma Katzka, Necklace by Hermosa Jewelry

Photography by Clay Austin, Model – Christina Zapolski at Directions USA, Styling by Andrea Serrano, Makeup and Hair by  Mac Does Hair, on location at The Gadsden House

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About Charleston Shop Curator

Charleston Shop Curator serves as a fashion blog and shopping guide to showcase the incredible diversity of style in Charleston, South Carolina. We continually strive to expose local creative talents from designers to stores. Here you can find all of the treasures Charleston has to offer, and more.

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