Monday, December 7, 2015

A Shopping Challenge + Giveaway

Today I'm continuing on with a recap of my NYC trip and I'm excited to share with you about the fun holiday shopping day I got to participate in at The Shops at Columbus Circle & how you can enter for the chance to win the look I put together!  If you've never visited before, it is the premier shopping destination in Manhattan - they have a great mix of retail shops, restaurants & even Whole Foods - all in the most beautiful indoor space (which was perfect since it was raining all day!).  I joined up with Serena & Amy to partake in the ultimate holiday shopping challenge.  We were each given a $1,000 gift card and were asked to shop for head-to-toe looks that would be appropriate for different holiday scenarios. The only rules were that we couldn't purchase all our items from the same store and we had just 4 hours to shop.

I'm always up for a good style challenge, so I was really excited to take this on and to see how far I could make the money stretch by mixing high and low styles.  After deliberating for a while, I decided to focus on a New Years' Eve look. Knowing that one lucky reader would win the entire look via a giveaway (see details below), I wanted to select items that would flatter a wide range of women, regardless of their age or body type.  So I stuck with sophisticated timeless styles that could be worn again & again for years to come and that would work for many different occasions.

After a healthy brunch at LandMarc (one of my favorite places to eat in the city because they have so many gluten-free options), we set out to shop.  I started at Sephora because I knew that I wanted to include beauty items to complete the evening look.  After purchasing a makeup & nail set, I went hunting for my party dress.  I tried on a few different styles at J. Crew (this fit & flare and this blue lace dress), but they didn't feel quite right.  So I ventured over to H&M and the instant I tried on this sparkly LBD, I knew I'd found the winner.  The fit was absolutely perfect and it was incredibly well made for the price.  I also scooped up these glam statement earrings to up the sparkle factor even more.

Next we took a quick lunch break at Bouchon Bakery, where we snacked on a charcuterie board and chatted about our shopping strategy for the remainder of the day.  After fueling up, there were only two hours left to finish my look so I headed out to find shoes & a coat.  J. Crew was my next stop, where I picked up these gleaming metallic pumps & this crystal bracelet (which was on sale!).  I was beginning to doubt if I could find a coat before time ran out & I really wanted something that felt festive & luxe.  On a whim, I walked into Michael Kors and they were having a huge sale.  This alpaca-blend coat was the perfect finishing statement piece - it was on clearance + an extra 30% off!

We ended our day with a champagne toast at Parkview Lounge, which was the ideal spot to relax, share our finds and enjoy beautiful views overlooking both Columbus Circle & Central Park.  You can see Amy's airport travel outfit here & Serena's black monochrome outfit here.  I love that we all chose very different looks that speak to our own personal style and it perfectly showcases the breadth of brands & stores that The Shops at Columbus Circle has to offer.  Here is a peek at the outfit I created:

The Shops at Columbus Circle is graciously offering a giveaway of my complete look - all you have to do is head over to my Instagram, like this photo & leave a comment below to be entered for your chance to win!  I will randomly select the winner at the end of the day tomorrow, so don't miss out!  Here's a breakdown of the items I purchased to build my New Year's Eve outfit - these are the pieces that one lucky reader will receive:

Thank you to The Shops at Columbus Circle for hosting the event & for sponsoring this post.
All opinions are 100% honest & completely my own.


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