UK Fashion and Lifestyle Blog.

Wednesday, 22 November 2017

4 Unusual Ways To Prepare For December

Foraging for Foliage at Christmas UK BloggerUntil now, I've been (kind of) holding back from mentioning the festive season in every single post, share, message and caption, but the pressure's getting too much.  I'm going to burst - and there'll be candy canes flying everywhere.  The remedy?  Discuss how best to prepare for December!  There are some obvious ways to get ready for the last month of the year: browse gift guides and start your Christmas shopping, plan festive party outfits, write Christmas cards, choose your decorations (quick question: do you prefer real or artificial trees?!) and tons more.  But how about the lesser known ways to prepare for December?  Read on, get out your novelty festive pens and start taking notes...
Holly Leaves Berries Flowers in Bag Fashion Blogger
White Pearl Embellishment on Black Netted Dress
Woodland Covered in Brown Leaves Autumn Winter

C O L L E C T   F O L I A G E

Ivy, holly, conifer sprigs, mistletoe - choose your poison!  Bring the outdoors, indoors.  Keep your collection outdoors in a safe, cold place before bringing inside at the beginning of December (holly lasts indoors for approximately 3 weeks before drying out).  But do keep private land in mind and only forage in areas you know are okay to collect from


A T T E N D   A   M A S T E R C L A S S

Always wanted to make your own traditional Christmas fruit cake from scratch?  Keen to create a festive table centrepiece?  There are loads of festive masterclasses and workshops around leading up to the festive season.  It looks as though bookings are now closed at Fortnum & Mason, however some other gems include Christmas craft workshops with the National Trust and making festive garlands with Anthropologie.  Oh and for Londoners, Time Out has a fabulous edit of festive Christmas craft workshops!


C R E A T E   A   F E S T I V E   P L A Y L I S T

Okay, not so unusual, but no setting, list or festive season is complete without festive music getting you into the holiday spirit.  I'll admit, I'm about three weeks deep into Mariah Carey and Wham! at this point, but you're still getting ahead of the game by creating a playlist of your faves before December kicks in!  Perfect for putting a smile on your face on the train, working through emails at home, putting up decos and driving through snowflakes (hey, I'm an optimist...)


P U T   F E S T I V E   B E A U T Y   O N   T R I A L

Is it just me, or is beauty the last thing to be done when getting ready for a festive occasion.  By this, I mean that glittering manicure we'd promised ourselves, the black velvet bow we figured we'd try on Christmas Eve and that killer smokey eye.  Sigh.  Well this year, I for one will be testing it all before December, rather than attempt it five minutes before heading out the door to an event.  Who's with me?!


Styling embellished sheer dress with jeans
Zara pearl embellished black sheer dress
Collecting holly foliage for Christmas in Bag

Jeans - 7 For Mankind

Bag - Zara City Bag With Faux Fur |  Boots - Kurt Geiger

Psst!  Whip our your oldest boots for collecting foliage; to get those dreamy pieces you'll have to get a little bit dirrrrty! 
Fashion blogger how to style a sheer dress with jeans trend
Zara black sheer tulle dress with pearl embellishment
Fashion Blogger Christmas Winter Photoshoot in WoodsHow are you feeling about this festive season?  Have you started the celebrations or prepared anything yet for December?  Let me know in the comments below!

With love,

Gabrielle x



  1. Looking like such a winter wonderland queen gorgeous Gabrielle, I'm adoring your December dream lover vibes! The pearl details of your dress are so divine and your hat is just beaut. With the mistletoe magic and woodland enchantment you definitely look straight out of the most majestic fairytale ever written :D I'm loving this post, definitely so with you on Mariah and Wham! :)

    I'm not the most Christmassy person although I've had my little hot pink Christmas tree up all year now and I must say I'm quite excited about the flamingo pink fairy lights I've bought to go with it (tack overload haha). Looking forward to decorating it and hopefully buying a few more trinkets to go with it! <3 xxx

    Sophie | soinspo xo

  2. Your photos are so beautiful Gabrielle!! I created a festive playlist the other day and Michael Buble is one of my faves and also Mariah and Wham!! Yayyyy I am so excited, I love Christmas!xx


  3. Ohhmmy i hope we have foliage too. I would like tot try some beauty products too this season.
    Btw, im lovin this outfit, i love beads detail on you.

    Much Love,
    Zarrah | The Bandwagon Chic

  4. Definitely is a must to have a festive playlist! I've already started listening to christmas songs! Lovely photos x

    Adventures in May | Miss Nev

  5. Real trees all the way! And yes, do practice your makeup in advance, it saves a lot of heartache.

    Anne - Linda, Libra, Loca

  6. ohhh my i love love this look!!
    kisses from the sandpit ❤︎

  7. I love this post, simply because it is the little things which nobody ever mentions, but I do think they are important as well, especially the festive playlist and trying out our festive beauty look! Love the pictures as well!

  8. Awesome shooting!
    Have a nice week!
    Gil Zetbase

  9. Such lovely ideas Gabrielle. I would love to go and collect some foliage :)

    Gemma x

  10. Such lovely ideas hun, I just got my nails done for christmas on Tuesday ( starting early lol) and I am a hige fan of listening to christmas music all the time. xx

  11. I feel like Christmas is very rapidly approaching! After having an artificial tree for years, we may get a real tree this year instead, which I'm quite excited for x

    Jenny | LuxeStyle

  12. Such some classic pics. You look so gorgeous dear, Love your jeans <3 Kisses <3

  13. I love your approach towards the festive season,'s the simple approach that matters the most.

    Shireen⎜Reflection of Sanity

  14. I love collecting Foliage around this time of the year, its so festive xx

  15. I've just started brought on from the basement all the boxes with Christmas decorations! Can't wait to start to enjoy the "real" festive season! :D
    You gave very good tips to approach it, anyway, I think I'll follow especially the one on beauty, this is really the last thing i remember to do when Christmas is coming!
    Your outfit is really pretty, as well, so original and refined! just perfect for this period of the year!
    You look beautiful as usual Gabrielle!

  16. Oh I'm about to burst too! You seem to be as excited as Christmas as I am, and I love that lol. I already have a Christmas playlist and I add new tracks every year :) As for your quick question, here in Argentina we mostly use artificial trees because so I'm already used to them. Plus of course there's an ecological factor that's more than a bonus. I guess if I move to the UK I'll keep getting artificial ones :)

  17. Love your unusual ideas! The only one I’ve done is make a playlist but even then, my brother usually takes charge of that haha I like the idea of collecting foliage (a favourite pastime of being child!) but we have Christmas in summer here so it wouldn’t be the same :( haha The idea of a masterclass is something I could get on board with though! Such a great idea!

    THE FASHANN MONSTER life + style

  18. What a great way to layer and wear a sheer dress! I love the holly in your bag too, cute! :)

    My Christmas playlist is ready to go as soon as 1st December hits, haha! That's when my local radio station starts playing CHristmas songs too so I'll have that on in the car :) Looking forward to CHristmas, not long to go now!

    Hope you are having a good week :) I had the day off yesterday and after a specialist appointment for the little one I dropped the boys off at their grandmother's and did some Christmas shopping, yey!

    Away From The Blue Blog

  19. I love the idea of finding a craft workshop or masterclass! Things always feel so much more festive if they are homemade and what perfect way to spend a wintery afternoon than inside making something with friends then heading somewhere for a glass of mulled wine. Sigh, if only I didn't have exams I would be at every single one I could find! xx

  20. Love how you styled this look! Adore your dress!!
    Mónica Sors

  21. What great ideas and beautiful pictures! I always like collecting foliage and a Christmas playlist sounds like a fun thing to make!!
    Have a lovely weekend :)
    Rosanna x
    Rose's Rooftop

  22. Great post Gabrielle!! In my case I'm very excited for this festive season, I have just bought a super tall Christmas tree and I can't wait to decor it! Here, in Argentina is more common to use artificial trees.

    Have a great weekend!


    Seize your Style

  23. The detail on that dress is gorgeous! I bet The National Trust festive workshops are great, I might have a look into those!
    Amy xx

  24. Very nice outfit and superb pictures!

  25. These are lovely ideas babe! Hahaha I'm so excited about December too. I have a playlist I always add a few songs to each year so have to do that soon! Xx

  26. I love these suggestions, particularly the one to create a holiday playlist, as I'm just putting the finishing touches on my own! I tell you this every time I visit, but your photography is so stunning.

  27. I'm all for the festive playlist. Get that boogy down! Ha!! Nice ideas Gabrielle hun.

  28. Ah, the tree debate. I hate the waste of artificial trees, but I don't know if chopping down thousands of trees each year is better? It twists my brain lol. I currently have an artificial tree for budget reasons. I've had it for years. Anyway, I'm adding a few of these ideas to my list immediately. I've been wanting to go out and collect foliage all day anyway!

  29. I'm so ready for this festive fun season. Today I put up the christmas tree (I know a bit too early, but it's good to get one thing done, so I don't have to rush with everything else.)
    I can't wait to pick out my outfit and do my nails!

  30. Amazing that you made all black looks so festive! You rock! <3 -

  31. Our office Christmas Party is actually on the first week of December. Too early. Haha. I agree. I will be trying out Holiday looks prior to going to parties too! Beautiful photos btw.

    Joy to the World

  32. Creating a playlist is great because memories become attached to the songs later! Collecting foliage sounds lovely too!

  33. You alway look great in all black! The bag is so cute :)


  34. The pearl detail on your dress is gorgeous Gabrielle. Collecting foliage sounds like a lovely way to enjoy a winter walk as well as great Christmas home decor. This has definitely got me excited for Christmas.
    Jaz xoxo

  35. I love how unique this list is! A festive playlist is a MUST. I'm so obsessed with holiday music! But I adore the idea of taking a master class. It'd be so fun to learn how to do a fun holiday wreath!
    Even though we prefer a real tree, our own is fake right now since our place is so tiny. But it gets the job done! We're decorating tonight!

    Susie |

  36. YES! You have inspired me. I am actually going to buy that beauty advent calendar I saw and give myself a festive manicure. I was in two minds about it coz it isn't my usual red nail polish. It's one a day.
    But what the heck. I will do it!
    Set to Glow

  37. Oh I am the same I have not started preparing for Christmas at all. I am avoiding but I will have to and soon. Love the outfit and all the layers and textures. Gorgeous photos and location. Have a beautiful day. xoxo Cris

  38. The gloves with the bag is so cute!

  39. Great tips and phenomenal photos <3

  40. It's really nice to read some alternative suggestions compared to the usual: "Have a christmas party!" or "Send christmas cards!" I really hope I have the time to book in some masterclasses as I did wreath making a couple of years ago and loved it! Also may I add you look divine!

    Musings & More

  41. I've been listening to festive playlists since the start of November haha - I really couldn't wait! Spotify has some pretty good Christmas playlists of different styles, although my favourite will always be Michael Buble (standard, I know). Collecting foliage is actually a great idea, saves you money instead of buying them. I bought pine cones in Hobbycraft to use in a little DIY, when actually I could have picked them up myself. Great idea!

    Julia x
    Last Post: How To Get in the Festive Spirit |

  42. Your photos are always stunning. You choose incredible locations.

    I love your suggestions. I never through of a festive themed Masterclass. I need to look into this.

    Her Style Hive

  43. Your outfit is absolutely wonderful and I adore every single piece! Thanks a lot for sharing your unusual but very helpful tips! Now I'm thinking about attending a masterclass :)
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena

  44. What a lovely post! I love the idea of going outside and collecting foliage, I collected some Autumn leaves as I fell in love with the colour of them and thankfully they are keeping quite well :)

    It's always fun to play around with DIY tips and tricks to make your home look homely and festive, I love a personal touch.

    I usually have fake Christmas Trees, a company kindly asked if I would be keen to try one of their real ones but had to turn it down due to two fluffy Christmas tree destroyers Patch and Nibbies my cats ;) haha!

    Sending love and thanks for this festive inspired post, it's lovely! Really like the holly in your bag and your purple hat by the way :)

    Laura xo

  45. Stunning look babe and I totally love the editing part. YOU ROCK!

  46. I wish we had Christmas Masterclasses here Gabrielle. The UK offers so many nice things. You look beautiful in these pics :D

  47. Agreed, a festive playlist is a must have!
    Aleeha xXx

  48. You look so lovely Gabrielle in that outfit! I loveeee your leather jacket. You suit it with those boots and your bag is stunning. I am enjoying the festive season now that I am feeling better. :) Doing some Christmas shopping and traveling which is joyful.

  49. I have so say the older I get the less festive I keep getting, which is kind of sad. I'm determined to change that though and I think I'll start by making a good playlist :)

    Julia // The Sunday Mode

  50. These are awesome ideas dear, I love the 3rd one "Create a Festive Playlist". Music really speaks to the soul, and it's one of the best ways to feel the festive atmosphere in your heart. Btw, you picked the perfect beanie for the all-black outfit. I really love your style dear!

    Jessica |

  51. I love listening to festive music during this time of year! Spotify has some great playlists!


  52. I really love this look dear, and the pictures are amazing!

    Isa M., Tic Tac Living

  53. Beautiful photos! You look really lovely and I love your attention to detail! :) xx


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