Final Dinner Design | The School of Styling Nashville


I was so honored + excited to plan and design the final dinner for The School of Styling: Nashville back in March! It’s been an immense blessing being so connected with Kaitlin Holland, Kelly Hovis, and the entire TSOS community, and I have absolutely loved being a part of a few of their workshops as an assistant! (By the way, registration for October’s Chapel Hill TSOS workshop is open!!) I could go on and on about how much I love the mission + heart of The School of Styling (read more here!), and it’s been such a joy to work alongside them so closely for a while now. I loved the opportunity to design this final dinner for all workshop attendees, speakers, and staff!

Even though a massive thunderstorm moved the final dinner inside (which meant my perfectly curated tapered candlesticks couldn’t be used!), the dinner was SO wonderful in every way!! I used 12th Table for this fabulously unique flatware, the slate charger, & all of the awesome tabletop rentals, my dear friend Jessica of Simply Jessica Marie hand lettered these perfect terra cotta place cards, & For the Host provided the cutest salt & pepper shakers for my olive-filled tabletop design! Olive branch is, hands-down, one of my favorite natural ways to add visual interest + texture + greenery to a tabletop, and I loved the loose arrangement of olive that served as a runner down the long table. Candlelight is the perfect accent to add ambiance, along with the string lights twinkling overhead.

It was an incredible end to TSOS Nashville, and I just love how a dinner party over candlelight, great food, & flowing wine brings people together. It truly was the best way to wrap up an exciting, fabulous few days in Nashville. What a joy!!

photos by Shalyn Nelson of Love, The Nelsons

recap of Day Three + the final dinner on The School of Styling blog


I love this candid picture because it’s so reflective of me in my element, doing my thing. Barefoot, big smile, cut olive branch in hand for each place setting. As much as I adore the meaningful & beautiful details for a dinner party (and there were a lot of them!), hand’s down the best part is enjoying a long meal with new & old friends, laughing endlessly, and sharing in heartfelt conversation. There’s really not much better, and I have the happiest memories from this final dinner!

Spring + Summer 2016 in Raleigh To-Do

photo by Jake + Heather Photo

This is my first Spring & summer living in Raleigh (I did go to college just down the road in Chapel Hill, but it’s been seven years since graduating!). I am a huge fan of seasonal to-do lists, and I had one for every season + every year while living in Washington, DC for six years. It’ll be so fun to explore a whole new city (or three, if you include Durham + Chapel Hill, which I am!) and find so many new adventures to go on. There’s not much better than getting out and about to explore your city; finding hidden gems, well-known favorites, and experiencing fun events + activities with your people!

Spring + Summer 2016 in Raleigh

  • go on a picnic (or ten!)
  • strawberry picking
  • see an outdoor movie
  • go shagging at North Hills on a Thursday night
  • take a spontaneous trip to the beach
  • go to the State farmer’s market
  • grow herbs (+ make fun cocktails with them!)
  • go peach picking
  • Fridays on the Front Porch at the Carolina Inn
  • ice cream at Mapleview Farms
  • walk around Fearrington Village
  • Durham Bulls baseball game
  • explore Duke Gardens
  • try a couple new breweries
  • play tennis weekly
  • hike Umstead Park
  • swim at the Eno River State Park
  • enjoy an afternoon at Pullen Park
  • bike the American Tobacco Trail
  • make ice cream
  • host an outdoor dinner party or cookout
  • go to outdoor concerts
  • Jordan Lake

I’ve been doing a little research, and I think this is a pretty good start to what’s sure to be a fun Spring + summer! What am I missing, friends?! I’m sure there are so many more activities and adventures to add to this list, and let me know any of your favorites!