Tis the season to be jolly and spread joy to your loved ones, safely.
One of my favorite things about the holidays is putting together thoughtful gifts for those I love that remind me of them. Here are some of my all time favorite thoughtful gifts to give right now. Here is to a Happy Holiday season. Sending everyone lots of joy and love!
Every holiday season I try to brighten up the joy in my room since it is where I spend most of my time these days working from home. Joy and Christmas go hand and hand for me. This year the joy is needed that much more so for the first time I decorated for Christmas before Thanksgiving. I am happy to admit I am so glad I did. Thee joy radiates for me each and every day seeing all my Christmas decor throughout my room thanks to Wayfair! I can’t wait to decorate the rest of my house 🙂
Wayfair helped me created a joyful space this Christmas and holiday season. Here is what I came up with and what is helping make me smile each day.
Happy Holidays! Don’t forget to spread the joy for others but also for yourself!
“Every leaf speaks bliss to me.Fluttering from the autumn tree.” ~ Emily Brontë
I’m teaming up with Wayfair to bring you The Fall Edit, a collection of advice, inspiration, and trends for the upcoming season, starting with a Q & A between Wayfair and I:
Fall Decorating and Renovation Q & A with Iced Tea & Top Knots
Wayfair: Which fall home decor projects do you get most excited about?
Iced Tea & Top Knots: I get most excited about changing up all my pillows, blankets and flowers throughout my home for Fall.
Wayfair: Are there any design trends you are loving right now?
Iced Tea & Top Knots: I am really loving all of these and hope to implement a few where I can this Fall.
Wayfair: What are a few ways people can spruce up their homes with fall decor while on a budget?
Iced Tea & Top Knots: Changing up your decor by season is definitely overwhelming sometimes because of the cost. I have found the picking up a couple new pillows, a new blanket and a new vase definitely help change up your room for the fall season while staying on a budget.
“Sometimes it feels so good to just sit by yourself, relax and not talk to anyone.” ~ Kristen Butler
Loungewear for me is like a comfy hug that comes from clothes. I wanted to share some of my favorite loungewear that I currently own or that are on my wish list that I hope to be able to purchase soon 🙂
Hope these pieces inspire everyone to take time for oneself especially during these times we continued to be in of racial injustice as the global pandemic of COVID-19.
Here’s to a great day of relaxation in fun loungewear! My promise to everyone is that going forward I am going to be featuring more diverse brands that include BIPOC owned businesses. I stand with you and I love you!
~Iced Tea & Topknots
P.S. What is your favorite loungewear to relax in?
Some of my favorite black owned fashion businesses can be found here.
Summer decor is one of my favorite things I look forward to every year. So I am so excited to be teaming up with Wayfair to bring you the Wayfair Summer Edit, a curated guide of design trends and recent happenings at Wayfair to help inspire you to turn your home into the perfect staycation spot – at a time when we need it most!
Design Ideas I am Loving this Season
This season, I am all about bright colors, statement pillows and anything that spruces up my outside and inside spaces for the season of Summer.
Some Top Trending Summer Decor Categories at Wayfair:
With the help of incredible customers Wayfair has been able to raise more than $2.3 million for the Feeding America COVID-19 Response Fund. This contribution will go directly to supporting more than 200 food banks, 60,000 meal programs, and millions of Americans during this difficult time.
Read more about Wayfair’s response to COVID-19 here.
To Find Out How Wayfair Responding to Racial InJustice, read more here.
Wayfair x Kelly Clarkson Home
Wayfair recently launched Kelly Clarkson Home, a collection which Kelly curated that reflects her French country style (with a mix of glam and boho as well!).
Thanks to incredible customers, Wayfair and Kelly were able to donate a portion of profits* from Kelly Clarkson Home after its launch to Feeding America’s COVID-19 Relief Fund.
*”Profits” means net revenue minus wholesale, shipping, and other product-related costs, customer service costs, and merchant fees, plus credit card points and rebates.
“You are more precious than jewels.” ~ Proverbs 31:10
How do you shop for all the amazing mothers in your life? I have that thought every year when Mother’s Day gets closer. I have found 5 of my top favorite gifts to give the moms in our lives this Mother’s Day shopping 🙂 Here they are below:
“The ultimate goal in life is not to be successful or loved, but to become the truest expression of ourselves, to live into authentic selfhood, to honor our birthright gifts and callings, and to be of service to humanity and our world” … Frederix Laloux
I recently did an interview with my amazing friend Jenn about her being the owner and founder of the amazing luxury brand Soul Carrier and how she is jumping into action to help with COVID-19 relief. Here is my amazing interview with Jenn!
Tell us a little bit about yourself
My name is Jennifer Paige Boonlorn and I am the owner and founder of Soul Carrier, which is a women’s fashion brand that designs leather handbags.
My mission with Soul Carrier is to inspire everyone to come within and ask themselves “Where do I want to go?” and to then encourage everyone to listen to their soul for the ultimate answer. There is so much “noise” that constantly bombards everyone, I want to be a light and say “No, listen to your heart above all the noise, tune out all the “should’s” and all the “advice” that is not a direct fit for your own soul.
That question “Where do you wantto go!?…” stems from the last question my mama would ever ask of me. My junior year of college at Arizona State University, my entire family was involved in a car accident – my mother turned and asked my sister that question moments before my father’s SUV turned and flipped, taking the lives of both my parents.
Moreover, I am very passionate about having people find their true north (their own personal values, vision or destination they want to move towards) and then encouraging them to align everything with that true north as requests, decisions, and forks in the road of life are presented to them.
In regards to the brand Soul Carrier, it is a collection of artisanal made leather handbags which I design and then have assembled by artisans in Leon, Mexico.
SoulCarrier is currently sold online and at high end resorts such as Four Seasons, Eau Spa Palm Beach, The Estate Yountville, Silver Oak Winery, Marriott gift shops, Hyatt gift shops, etc.
How did you decide to start Soul Carrier?
In 2009, I moved home back home to Phoenix from NYC. I lived in NYC for four years, graduated from Parsons, worked at the Conde Nast publication Women’s Wear Daily, interned for Oscar de la Renta (they would give me his credit card and send me to Grand Central Station to buy clam chowder for the entire office, or they would put me in a town car and send me to JFK to make sure dresses and furs got on the right plane to Europe, there was also the times I got to dress models back stage during New York Fashion Week), I also worked in the product development department at American Eagle for their lounge wear line Aerie.
When I got back to Phoenix, there was an event to honor the grand opening of Barneys at our local mall Scottsdale Fashion Square. Local residents were asked to take blank mannequins and turn them into art, the event was called “The Mannequin Is Our Muse”. I collaborated with my friend Bob, who is an architect. Bob and I found these vibrant rag rugs at the Dollar Store, and covered the mannequin creating this avant garde statute covered in recycled rag rugs. Bob encouraged me to do something with the beautiful rag rugs, and thus out of a recycled rug from the Dollar Store, Soul Carrier was born – my very-very first collection of bags were made from those rag rugs.
Whatis your favorite inspiring quote
Whatis the best piece of advice you have ever gotten
Growing up my mom used to say to me “I don’t want you to know everything, instead I want you to be a problem solver and have the skills set to understand where and who to turn to, when you do hit a snag in the road”. That advice has served me so incredibly throughout life. I don’t need to know how to do everything I just need to have the perspective of knowing my skill sets and then outsourcing and collaborating with others when something is not in my wheelhouse.
Knowing that I am BIGGER than any tragedy or disaster that could ever cross my path. Knowing that I wasn’t taken on that fateful day 20 years ago when my parents were killed in a car accident – I still have a mission and a purpose to fulfill. Knowing that the fires have arrived on multiple occasions, my parent’s car accident, my best friend’s suicide, another friend’s suicide last week, this global pandemic, and yet through out it all, I don’t ask why it is happening, I instead ask what I can learn from it, and what pain is trying to teach me. I try to stay grounded in the moment, to NOT hope that the moment was different, but instead to accept it fully and understand that all of it, even the yucky pain is being used for our greater purpose. There is a golden gift that comes with knowing you can walk straight through the fire and not get burned. In the words of Glennon Doyle, it is because we are all fire proof – we just have to let our hearts and minds KNOW THAT!
What are you excited about most for Soul Carrier and just life in general to come next?
When the pandemic passes, I want to continue to grow my wholesale businesses at high end resorts and I am excited to offer new products and designs. At some point, I would love to attend the EDM concert Tommorrowland in the Netherlands – I am a huge EDM fan. The dj’s Kygo, Martin Garrixx and Avicii (RIP) are my biggest muses 🙂 And attending EDM concerts absolutely lights me up – it is like sugary-candy-coated synergistic glitter falls through the air when I hear those djs play.
How Soul Carrier Is Helping The Relief of COVID-19
One of the many things I love about Jenn is the love and empowerment behind everything she does. I knew when this all hit that Jenn would be one to jump into action and that she did. Jenn and Soul Carrier are doing their part with the creating Soul Carrier Cloud Covering Face Masks to help protect communities during this time.
Here is more information below on The Cloud Covering Face Mask:
SPREADING THE LOVE – HELPING THOSE IN NEED
Made in the USA
These are not medical grade masks. Let’s save those for the front line responders and healthcare workers. In fact, healthcare workers are currently using these exact masks over their N95 masks to help preserve them.
They are donating masks to Child Crisis Nursery and to other shelters and facilities where communal living is unavoidable. By supporting them, you are helping them to support those in need.
Can’t wait to get mine!
Here’s to doing things that enrich our soul and to help those in need!
~Iced Tea and Top Knots
P.S. What is enriching your soul right now while you are at home? For me that means, styling my favorite pieces including my gorgeous Soul Carrier Connection Clutch.
“Self Care is a priority and necessity-not a luxury.”
In these uncertain times and us all being at home, Self Care now more than ever is so important. It needs to be made more of a priority that we fit into our day. Self Care will help us get through this all. Here are some of my favorite Self Care gifts to either give to yourself or to girlfriends and family (some of these work for your guy friends too). Stay Tuned for the top 10 Self Care gifts for the guys in your life next week!
“Palo Santo is traditionally used for relieving common colds, flu symptoms, stress, asthma, headaches, anxiety, depression, inflammation, emotional pain and more. This Essential Oil is great for Aromatherapy and can also be used during massage work to assist in healing.”
I have made this a part of my daily routine for all of these reasons and it has continued to do wonders for me during these unfamiliar times. Both Palo Santo and crystals bring about the best energy into any room.
Candles have always been a part of myself self care routine and this line of candles is one of my favorites. Candles lighten the mood and scents bring about the best memories whether it’s just reading or taking a bath while they burn, it is the best.
If you love doing your nails while being at home like I do, then definitely check out Olive & June’s The Everything Box and all their amazing products. Their products are 7-Free and that makes me love them even more. Their products are your at home manicures are going to make you smile. An added bonus, their owner Sarah Gibson Tuttle is awesome!
This is another gift perfect for yourself or loved ones. I got these for my dad for Christmas and he loves them. They are perfect for just taking time for yourself and putting your favorite lotion or hand oil then put them in and sit for 20 minutes, makes for such a special self care moment. Also be sure to follow the directions for safety 🙂 This is definitely a gift that will put smiles all around and make for a great at home time.
Can never go wrong with a cozy robe whether you use it as a coat while you work or cozying up on the couch while watching your favorite show. When I think self care, a cozy robe is always on that list and makes for the perfect gift for yourself and/or friend.
There are moments, especially now, that we know we want to incorporate self care into the day, but feel stuck on how to do that. This book gives you so many options on how to incorporate some self care, which I love and I have definitely given this as a gift before. May have to gift it again soon 🙂
Hydration, Hydration, Hydration is always key for your skin. It is a great way to take care of yourself when you incorporate a skincare that works for you. I know finding the right products, gets me excited to take time for my skin, which is great self care.
The uniform for this time is a cute lounge that can also work for virtual dates and happy hours with friends, which is my newest self care must. Being cute and comfy is so fun and this lounge set below is one that is on my wishlist. When feeling cute while being comfy, that lifts your mood and creates a great self care moment.
Meditation and breathwork are so important for staying grounded in life especially in uncertain times. We all have a different look on what meditation is whether it is using an app like Calm, painting, organizing or prayer. Whatever your way of mediation is having a meditation pillow that you can dedicate your mediation on and when you sit on it you feel that peace. I plan on gifting this to many, I know will love it.
Here is a great definition of meditation: “Meditation is a practice where an individual uses a technique – such as mindfulness, or focusing the mind on a particular object, thought, or activity – to train attention and awareness, and achieve a mentally clear and emotionally calm and stable state.”