Epperson declares that fashion and food “are my two passions.” “Ever since, I have been part of and deeply in love with the fashion industry,” she says. “Since I’ve had a family, cooking for them has become my way of showing my love and had also become a release. I also believe that these two are close to every modern woman’s heart.”
It seems that I am not the only one who loves getting to know this motherly side of Epperson, which led to the birth of her Jenni Epperson Fashion + Food book. “I have always dreamt of writing my own book, but really knowing what to write was what held me back. After my blog took off, I realized how many people out there have the same desire to make everyday celebrations more memorable. This became the focus of my book,” she adds.
Each section of the book is presented with a handpicked theme by the author, providing décor suggestions, easy to cook recipes by the Epperson family (yes, even her daughter Aryanna cooks!), table setting tips and outfit recommendations to make celebrating occasions extra special.
Exclusively for Style Kit, Epperson shares with us her special fashion + food memories; plus tips for celebrating the holiday season:
Style Kit: What is your most memorable celebration?
Jenni Epperson: My daughter Aryanna's first birthday was the most memorable one. It was the first big event for my family and I wanted it to be very personal and special so I didn't hire a party planner. It was simple and intimate, and to top it off, I also invited a nearby orphanage to join in the celebration. It became the start of many successful memorable parties I hosted for my family years later, and it was also a way of giving back.
SK: What is your favorite occasion/holiday and why?
JE: Date night! Many would say something more generic, but date night is a beautiful occasion to prepare, and it's also very random. You can do it out of celebration for any event, like an anniversary, but you can also just decide to give your partner a treat! It helps make the fire of love stronger between couples!
SK: What is your favorite dish to cook and why?
JE: In my book I made a super simple shrimp scampi pasta that can pass as a "fancy" meal but trust me it was super easy and super yummy! That's my thing—it has to be easy to whip up because the modern woman doesn't have much time to spare!
SK: Can you share with us at least five hosting tips for the holidays?
1. Think of new gift-giving ideas. If you're planning to throw a party, make a different version of secret santa by putting in a theme like "must have for the year ahead" or "reminders of the year that has passed.” Play around with nostalgia and memories, it always makes for an awesome get-together.
2. Don't sweat the prep. It's your celebration just as anyone else’s, so don't try to do it all on your own! Get the whole family to help by delegating. It also strengthens the bond.
3. Go for colors or metallic hues! Whether it's for your fashion or table setting, these two styles make maximum impact with minimal effort. It's also the perfect fashion palette this holiday season! Try sapphire, ruby or emerald colors and mix them up with neutrals!
4. Scared of holiday fat? Go the extra mile and research healthier recipe alternatives so that your food can taste the same but be less guilty.
5. Make a new tradition. Whether it's making a personal and unique decor for the tree or whipping up a signature cookie recipe, find a new tradition that you can do in the years to come.
* Jenni Epperson Fashion + Food features photography by Tom Epperson, book design and layout by Dix Perez and illustrations by Soleil Ignacio and Kris Abrigo. It is exclusively available at National Book Store and Powerbooks. Visit www.JenniEpperson.com for more fashion + food tips.