The Gift Guide: Gifts for Girls

I became an aunt at the ripe old age of 17 and Christmas shopping instantly took on a new meaning. Kids are undeniably the most fun to shop for, because they just get into the whole Christmas thing hard. My favorite gifts to give kids revolve around really beautifully made things that still have that touch of child-like wonder to them. So, no, I can’t claim to never end up in the toy aisle with a cart full of brightly colored plastic, but I much prefer something that feels a bit less disposable. So today we’re focusing on gifts for girls, all of which are beautifully designed and all of which are plastic-free. These are the special gifts that balance out all the princess paraphernalia without sacrificing even a bit of fun. From a truly lovely necklace for the teenager in your life to the prettiest wooden blocks you ever did see, I hope you’ll find something here that’s just perfect for one of the little ladies in your life.

The Gift Guide: Gifts for Girls from @cydconverse


p.s. If you missed them, be sure to check out my picks for fabulous hostess gifts, thoughtful gifts for inlaws and awesome gifts for guys!

[Gifts for Girls | 1: Kids apron set | 2: Yarn tassel mobile | 3: Kitty gloves | 4: Pastel tumbling tower | 5: Turquoise necklace | 6: Baby blanket | 7: Rifle Paper Co. classic books | 8: Little Friend rattle | 9: Party crasher headband | 10: Building block set | 11: You Are So Loved art print | 12: Oliver the Cat.]

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Deck the Doors

B and I daydream regularly about building a house in a couple of years. It’s a goal we’re in the very early stages of working toward right now, but of course it’s something that makes me excited just talking about. One thing I know is that a really fabulous front door is a must for me, whether we eventually build or buy and fix up a house. Should you need an explanation as to why, these beautiful holiday doors are about to set you free from all doubt. Is there anything prettier or more inviting than a gorgeous entry all decked out in holiday cheer? Whether it be a single stunning boxwood wreath or swags of fresh pine garland, I think we should all pledge not to forget to deck the doors this holiday season. Even if you don’t celebrate, a bit of greenery will have your front door looking cheerful and beautiful through the winter months! (p.s. There’s still time to enter the West Elm giveaway! Follow me on Instagram to get the scoop on each day’s giveaway throughout the entire 24 Merry Days extravaganza.)

Green Door with Pine Garland and Wreath

In the Fields

Boxwood Wreath

Nicole Franzen

Holiday Door with Snowflakes

Small Measure

Red Door with Silver Wreath

Design Mom

A Yellow Front Door with Wreath

Inspire Me

Pair of Red Wreaths on Double Doors

Doug Hickok




Cranberry Smash Cocktail

In my undergrad years, my go-to cocktail of choice was always a vodka cranberry. While my palate has changed some and I’m more of a tonic girl now, there’s something undeniably awesome about cranberry paired with vodka. The two just go. So today we’re mixing a festive holiday season drink that brings a sophisticated twist to the staple of my college years. I call this one the cranberry smash. A couple of weeks ago Absolut sent along one of their pretty limited edition Andy Warhol designed bottles of vodka, which was the inspiration for today’s drink. As it were, I’ve been an Absolut drinker since back in my college days and it’s still my vodka of choice. So let’s get mixing!

Cranberry Smash Cocktail by @cydconverse


  • 1/4 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1-1/2 ounces Absolut vodka
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 6 ounces ginger ale

Muddle cranberries, orange juice and brown sugar in a cocktail shaker until the cranberries are sufficiently smashed but still somewhat lumpy. Add vodka and ice and shake until cold. Pour mixture over ice, top with ginger ale and stir gently to combine. Garnish with additional cranberries if desired.

Cranberry Smash Cocktail by @cydconverse

Guys, this one is seriously yum! It’s tart and sweet, and just plain tasty. Also, I think the Absolut Andy Warhol bottle would make an awesome holiday hostess gift, too. It even comes in a really awesomely designed box. That’s a hostess gift I can get behind for sure! And this cocktail is one I can get behind, too.

Cranberry Smash Cocktail by @cydconverse


[Photos, recipe + styling by Cyd Converse for The Sweetest Occasion.]

Sources -
Andy Warhol bottle from Absolut
Coasters + twizzle sticks from The Pink Orange
Glasses from West Elm (no longer available, similar here)

This post was sponsored by Absolut. Read more about our editorial policies


6 Favorite Christmas DIY Ideas

Now that it’s December we’re officially on the Christmas bandwagon around here! The holiday season is my favorite time of year to get crafty and I have lots of pretty things in the works to share with you over the next few weeks. In the meantime, I wanted to take a quick minute today to share six of my all-time Christmas DIY ideas from years past. As you can tell, I’ve got a thing for pretty wreaths and glitter. Lots and lots of glitter. I know you’re feeling me on that one. For more glittery, festive inspiration, check out the full Christmas DIY archives!

DIY Mini Holiday Wreaths from @cydconverse

DIY Mini Christmas Wreaths

DIY Sugarplum Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Sugarplum Garland

DIY Colorblock Glitter Ornaments by @cydconverse

DIY Colorblock Glitter Ornaments

DIY Snow Globe by @cydconverse

DIY Snow Globes

DIY Gold Nutcrackers by @cydconverse

DIY Golden Nutcrackers

DIY Gold Leaf Pine Cone Garland by @cydconverse

DIY Gold Leaf Pine Cone Garland


[Top photo by Lovely Indeed | All others by Alice G. Patterson for The Sweetest Occasion.]


Color Palette: Juniper + Mulberry

If ever there were a seasonal color palette that I absolutely loved, I think this would be that one. I’m outright obsessed with this rich, gorgeous shade of juniper at the moment and when paired with mulberry and midnight blue, it’s just stunning. Plus it feels really festive and merry, don’t you think? Also, I really think I need a fancy taffeta skirt like this one. I love a pretty, fancy skirt! While we’re on the subject of all things festive and fabulous, don’t miss today’s 24 Merry Days giveaway over at Say Yes where Liz is giving away an amazing prize package from Public Bikes. Hooray! (p.s. There’s still lots of time to enter yesterday’s West Elm giveaway, too, so don’t miss it!)

Color Palette: Juniper and Mulberry from @cydconverse


[Photos, from top: Inspired by Elizabeth | The Dust Dances Too for The Clothes Horse | Luisa Brimble.]