It had all the makings of a disaster day – I split the back of my pencil skirt up to my butt trying to do a Rockettes-style high kick in the ‘infinity’ mirrors at our second stop, Donald J Pliner, I broke a nail (the horror!!), and the flu was somewhere in our group, but no one knew it! (even the person who had it!) Still? I had an amazing day – I always do with these girls, and how can shopping – especially at the Forum Shops – EVER be anything but awesome?! What follows is our awesome day, and while I’ll be talking about my favorites from our stops, I don’t think of it as a gift guide as much as I consider it a ‘Treat Yo’self’ guide. Better yet? When you shop at these stores (and several others) from Dec 1 until Dec 12, you’re also going to be helping give back to those in need! Read on to hear about my favorite things, and where a percentage of your purchases is going during the Forum Shops Great Give!
A French & Brazilian designer known for her clean, crisp white shirts & amazing collars, Anne Fontaine has an abundance of amazing finds to gift yourself for the holidays (or your stylish loved ones!) I’ve been lusting after her collars for ages – they range from delicate and beautiful to slightly gothic and dark, which I love. There are gems, feathers, chain, flowers, and all sorts of amazing embellishments that make these collars so special, and they can really amp up a simple outfit.
Other favorites of mine from Anne Fontaine were this amazing velvet jacket, this ‘ruffled’ plaid look, and this brooch that pull double duty embellishing a shoe by simply clipping it on, or in a more traditional brooch application by pinning it on a dress, lapel, or shirt!
Last, if you’re looking for a gift that is a little lower in price, check out the printed totes, they come in three colors, fold into themselves to save space, and plant 6 trees when you buy one!
Anne Fontaine is donating a portion of each purchase to the Anne Fontaine foundation from Dec 1-12 at the Forum Shops location in Caesars Palace.
DONALD J PLINER
You guys know I’m no stranger to Donald Pliner shoes – I’ve posted on my FB more times than I can count! In the last few years, the brand has stepped up their style and has some seriously cute shoes! (I actually wore a pair of DJP ankle/calf boots to this shopping day!) We visited during a time of transition and got to see the best of fall and some of the Spring newness all at once! I have a few pairs from fall, but Spring brightened the store with neon and bright colors and fun sneakers, and there’s still more to come! I’m definitely going to need the white sneakers with the neon orange sprayed where the upper sole meets the side. I’m really digging the rainbow sole with the white and silver upper, too! So bright and fun! (and while I didn’t try them on, I bet they’re comfy too!)
Fall favorites from DJP that I don’t have yet are these adorable leopard spotted boots (head over to my pal Christie’s instagram for a shot of them in action!), and the velvet combat boots! (they also have patent glitter ones!) My only heartbreak is that my feet are too wide for the combat boots, so I’ll have to live vicariously through you gorgeous folks that snag a pair!
Did I mention that store manager Sarah whips up a tasty Bloody Mary? They were garnished with a caper berry, which I’ve never eaten before, and it was super yum! Bloody Mary might be the perfect drink – they’re like a salad in a glass – practically a health tonic, amiright?!
Donald J Pliner is donating a portion of each purchase to the American Cancer Society from Dec 1-12 at the Forum Shops location in Caesars Palace.
Mulberry England is actually a brand I didn’t know very much about – my only experience with it is my previously mentioned friend Christie posting about it on her blog and Instagram. You might also have noticed that England’s newest favorite Royal, Megan Markle, has been spotted carrying Mulberry bags! (and we all know about the Megan Markle effect, right?)
Mulberry is definitely not a new brand, but it’s gained popularity in recent years because of the royals favoring the brand to other luxury bag designers. It’s delightfully British, through and through, but in a regal, refined way. You can find simple, but unique designs, a couple twists (no pun intended) on their signature Postman’s lock.
I feel like while they definitely stay true to their aesthetic, they have different colors, textures, and styles to satisfy a range of people! I particularly loved the glitter bags from fall and the new bright colors for spring! Croc-embossed leather and amazing leather are trademarks that you’ll see throughout their collections. I also couldn’t resist touching these fab feather clutches – would you carry one?
I ended up grabbing a pair of the most amazing sunglasses – as soon as I put them on, I knew I needed them in my life (and collection). They give serious steampunk vibes while still looking posh. I adore the color, too – such a great color for my gingerness. (and they match my lipstick – SCORE!)
Mulberry is donating a portion of each purchase to the Public Education Foundation from Dec 1-12 at the Forum Shops location in Caesars Palace.
I’m not sure if any of you know this about me, but I LOVE writing with fountain pens – I bought my first ‘fancy’ fountain pen in early 2012 after trying a cheap-o one and loving how writing with it felt. It was the Sailor Chalana, and coming in around $200, it was definitely a splurge for a pen for me. I don’t know, I feel like there is just something so romantic about writing in real ink, in refilling the pen, having ink stains on your writing hand. Maybe I’m a weirdo, but Montblanc existing is proof I’m not!
Montblanc is said to have been the inventor of the modern fountain pen – they created it to make a pen that could travel – one that could be used anywhere, not simply at a desk with a need to be repeatedly dipped in an inkwell. While Montblanc pens are sadly a bit out of my budget (they range in price from about $600 to well over $1,000), the brand does offer some other, more modern options in the stationery tech realm (is that a real category or did I make it up?). I got to try out their new Augmented Paper, which is a leather portfolio that contains a lined notebook and their StarWalker ballpoint, which allows you to take notes or doodle on actual paper, and then you simply push a button and it transmits to your smart device. Once you have it on your device, you can alter, add color, or even draw/write additional stuff within the Montblanc Hub app!
Another amazing low-tech item they’re currently offering is perfect for that Marilyn lover in your life – they have a White journal with Marilyn’s lip print in her signature red (Max Factor Ruby Tuesday!) – and it even has her beauty mark! In addition, they’ve designed a sleek red pen (inspired by her favorite Ferragamo heels) in a matching red!
Montblanc is donating a portion of each purchase to St. Jude’s from Dec 1-12 at the Forum Shops location in Caesars Palace.
I’m sure you’ve all heard of Pandora, the company that specializes in charm bracelets that you can continually add to over time (which makes them a perfect gift to yourself or others, and a great way to commemorate a milestone or life experience).
This Christmas, they’ve released a fun collaboration with the Rockettes (ironically, we went here AFTER I destroyed my skirt attempting to do Rockette-style chorus line kicks.) Included in the collection is a swirled enamel and silver-tone tree ornament that opens to reveal a swirled white and sparkly charm to add to your bracelet!
Pandora is donating a portion of each purchase to Opportunity Village from Dec 1-12 at the Forum Shops location in Caesars Palace.
What goes best after a day of shopping? How about a delicious meal? We found ours at The Palm restaurant, which is located right near the entrance to the Forum Shops from Caesars Palace. Walking in, we were greeted by 4 handsome centurions who were guarding our private dining room! Talk about an appetizer! The tastiest part of the meal was yet to come though!
I started with a Caesar salad (when in Rome, right?) Fun fact: the caesar salad was invented in Tijuana, and not in Rome at all!! Anyway, enough with the history lesson, this salad was one of the best caesars I’ve had in a long time. I needed a salad fix… BAD.
For our main, we had the choice of Chicken Parmesan, Salmon, Swordfish, Filet medallions, or their Chairman’s Reserve NY Strip, which is what I chose. Topped with shallot butter (my FAVE) and gremolata-seasoned shoestring potatoes, and cooked to absolute perfection, it seriously melted in my mouth. GOD I LOVE STEAK. Seriously, I don’t know how people live on vegetables alone. Alongside the entrees, dishes of their half & half (half cottage fries and half onion straws) and steamed veggies were served family-style. Lets just say the half & half went fast – those onions were AMAZING.
Now, no dinner is truly complete without dessert (says the diabetic – but I DO eat dessert from time to time, I’m only human!), and we had the option of Key Lime pie, New York cheesecake (my choice!), or flourless chocolate cake. Topped with a perfectly tart raspberry sauce, it was just what I needed to finish things off. Well, that and another glass of my cabernet. 😀
Even The Palm restaurant is getting in on the Great Give action, they’re donating a portion of each purchase to Unshakeable, which is a non-profit that helps woman out of a dangerous or hard time in their life. They’re giving from Dec 1-12 at the Forum Shops location in Caesars Palace.
THE GREAT GIVE
Other stores at the Forum Shops donating during the Great Give are:
Brighton Collectibles, donating to Opportunity Village
Carmine’s NYC Family Style Italian Restaurant, donating to St. Judes
Kalifano, donating to Camp Anytown
Magical Memories Dimensions Art Gallery, donating to Make a Wish
Magical Memories featuring Disney fine art, donating to Make a Wish
Stuart Weitzman, donating to Las Veg Philharmonic Guild
Ted Baker, donating to Opportunity Village
So tell me, if you were a store in the Forum Shops, what organization would YOU donate to? Mine would be the Michael J. Fox Foundation – did you know that 88 cents of every dollar actually goes to research?
Thank you to The Forum Shops, along with Anne Fontaine, Donald J Pliner, Mulberry, Montblanc, Pandora, and The Palm restaurant for an amazing day, I can’t wait to come back and shop with you again!
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