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Locale Lovelies: Orange County + L.A.

I am happy as a lark to welcome today's first guest, Danni. She blogs at {oh, hello friend}, and was born and raised in Orange County. These are her top hometown welcome basket picks, and she's starting us off today by advising that you "grab a tote + necklace and represent!"

The {Los Angeles Tote} from Maptote, $15, and a {California Love Necklace} by Etsy seller Mushka for $48 - a pricy token for welcome baskets, but would be very cool bridesmaids' gifts!

Your browser may not support display of this image.Next, Danni recommends putting together a little list of shops and sites for your guests, beginning with the award-winning {Orange County Performing Arts Center} and the quaint {Bowers Museum} of art.

She would point visitors in the direction of the {Road Less Traveled Store} in Santa Ana, dedicated to offering environmentally friendly products, as well as {Crossroads Trading Co.}. This buy/sell/trade shop tops Danni's list for fun vintage clothes: she finds great brands and great deals, and there's nothing that could make your East Coast/Southern/Midwestern guests feel cooler than buying something vintage. In California. Near L.A. {I'm not being snide one bit; I felt this way when I first came to Cali from Maryland!}
This next idea might be my favorite yet: decorate each guest's hotel room with lovely {Pom Poms} from Orange County Etsy seller Orange Kisses! Imagine two to three poms per room, hanging over a bedside table with a sweet welcome note. They only cost $3-4 each and make a big impact; perfect if you want to provide a sweet surprise without spending too much time or money.
Danni just discovered Nan Lawson at a local craft show this month, and "immediately fell in love" with this L.A. artist's work. Her {prints} are just $10 each, and would be a nice non-weddingy touch for guests to take home.

Danni really struck gold at the aforementioned craft show, where she also was introduced to {crafty aprons, knitting needle pouches, and coupon organizers} from Polly Danger. You could pick something specific to each guest's interests for a personal touch, while supporting a local crafter's work.

On that note, Danni has another great recommendation for your guests: attending local craft shows! {Unique Los Angeles} hosts over 250 handmade vendors and is like "Etsy heaven!" {Patchwork Show} and {Handmade Brigade of Orange County} is another awesome craft group that puts on events. And last but certainly not least, Danni would send newcomers to the streets, in hot pursuit of traveling food mobiles such as Kogi BBQ {Danni has heard of people waiting up to two hours for a Korean BBQ taco!}; CoolHaus ice cream sandwiches; the Vietnamese NomNom Truck; and of course, the Sprinkles cupcake van {pictured above}!

Danni explains that these trucks "simply advertise straight through Twitter to their followers about their next location!" I wonder if there is some way to turn this into a scavenger hunt for your guests? Talk about a fun way to explore L.A.!

Next up are the absolutely perfect free printables Danni has designed for us, and two more very special guests...
A bit more, about the contributor: Danni shares her creativity and inspiration at oh, hello friend, and also sells lovely jewelry, tidbits and buttons in her Etsy shop. She is a wonderfully gifted designer and a much-appreciated friend to Kirei Nest!

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