For this post I teamed up with my friend Brooke Magliozzi at Wayfair. We are both super passionate about putting together the perfect cheese platter, so we decided to collab in order to show Haute Mess readers how we wow our friends and family with a spring-themed cheese board!

Whether you’re entertaining a crowd or having a leisurely happy hour at home with your s/o, spring weather provides us with plenty of reasons to enjoy a relaxing evening in our own backyards. Of course in our minds, no evening is complete without a Pinterest-worthy cheese board.

Enjoy this snippet from the spring section of Magliozzi’s guide, and read the full post here!

Spring signals the end of winter! There’s nothing better than relaxing outside for your first glimpse at the sun in months. Cheese boards are the perfect accompaniment to a laid-back spring weekend on your patio with a glass of wine. To help you decide which cheeses work best for the changing weather, we’ve made the perfect cheese, meat and cracker platter for your every need this spring!

SEMI AGED Bucheron:

Bucheron is a goat’s milk cheese from the Loire Valley that is made in short logs and sold in slices. The longer it’s aged, the sharper it tastes, therefore this cheese would make a perfect aged addition to a cheese board.

Cowgirl Creamery St. Pat is a cow’s milk cheese with a special green rind. The rind is wrapped in nettle leaves, which add a smoky artichoke flavor that is perfectly used as a party platter to celebrate the end of winter. Any soft cheese rolled in herbs may be used as a substitute.

BLUE Gorgonzola:

Gorgonzola is a blue cheese made from cow’s milk. It easily crumbles and has a salty bite. There are two types of gorgonzola to choose from: sweet or hot.

Landaff cheese is a cow’s milk cheese from Landaff Creamery. This cheese is tangy with a buttery texture and clean finish, perfect for a warm spring day. Cheddar from your local grocery store could be used as a substitute for Landaff.

Raspberries
Strawberries

Strawberry balsamic jam

Capicola ham

Sliced radishes
Pistachios

Carr’s Water Crackers

Pinot Grigio/Pinot Gris from Hendry Wines

Cabbage leaf cheese board with snail by Bordallo Pinheiro [source: Wayfair]

Click here to shop our seasonal board pairing

The herby texture of the spring cheese collection and the bright colors of pistachios and radishes are presented especially well on a cheese tray made of earthenware.

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Over the next three years Target Corp. will spend $7 billion to renovate more than 600 stores, according to WWD.

“[The stores] will look and function differently. They’ll be reconfigured with more space for fashion storytelling and table settings in home. They’ll be digitally connected,” the retail giant’s chairman and chief executive officer Brian Cornell tells WWD.

“Order pickup and bridal registry in 2018 will touch 250 stores — 600 by 2019, and that’s just the beginning.”

Target shoppers on Black Friday, 2016 [source: Target Corporate]

The renovations come on the heels of a “weak quarter,” according to KSTP.

During the past quarter, which includes the holiday season, Target’s profit fell 43 percent “with strong online sales failing to offset weakening business at its stores,” according to KSTP.

“Target’s stock tumbled more than 12 percent and rattled Wall Street, as shares in Walmart, Macy’s and other retailers fell as well.”

Cornell also tells WWD 2016 “was not our best year,” and explains that, not only will the corporation spend $7 billion on a capital investment program to combat fallen profits, it will also “sacrifice $1 billion in annual operating profit this year to grow sales faster and capture market share against better-performing rivals such as Walmart Stores Inc., as well as off-pricers such as TJ Maxx.”

Children wearing Cat & Jack, a successful new brand by Target [source: Target Corporate]

The investments in part will go towards the launch of 12 brands within the next two years, according to WWD, that will represent more than $10 billion of Target’s sales. This is thanks to the success of Cat & Jack, a new children’s brand, that is expected to produce $1 billion in sales in 2017.

“The majority will be in Target’s home and fashion categories, which represent $26 billion in combined sales,” according to WWD.

When deciding which brands to launch, Cornell explains to WWD that the corporation really listened to consumer wants and needs.

“In some cases, it will be a new branch or a relaunch of an existing brand,” Cornell tells WWD.

“The consumer told us that some of our brands have gotten a little tired and a little bit old. We’ll go from a series of labels to a collection of brands. We now have a portfolio with a lot of labels but very few brands.”

On Monday, March 6, Target’s stock closed at $56.11, falling over 16 percent from the week before. Despite this downward trend, Cornell asks shareholders to “make an investment to build a strong company for the future,” according to WWD.

“Our goal today is to demonstrate that the investments we’re making are the right decisions for the long term.”

Inside Target’s small format store at Packard’s Corner near Boston University [source: Arrowstreet]

Though Target’s net earnings for the fourth quarter, which ended January 28, “plummeted 42.7 percent to $817 million from $1.4 billion a year earlier” and “sales for the three months declined 4.3 percent to $20.69 billion,” leaving the company with “an earnings drop of 18.6 percent for the full year, to $2.74 billion, on a sales decline of 5.4 percent, to $20.6 billion,” according to WWD, it found great success in their 32 small format stores.

Cornell tells WWD that “units sales per square foot are higher than average,” and because of this, “Target is ramping up the rollout with 30 new units this year with a goal of 100 set for 2020.”

Outside a small format Target store [source: Arrowstreet]

While all 1,800 of Target’s stores “are within 10 miles of 85 percent of customers,” according to WWD, Cornell insists that the small format stores “expand the corporation’s footprint in in key urban areas and college campuses” in part because they are “customized for each community,” as opposed to the typical, full-line stores.

“In the last six months we’ve opened stores in Manhattan, Queens and Brooklyn. You can expect to see more and more,” Cornell tells WWD.

“It’s time to accelerate this new format.”

When it comes to full-line stores, however, it is quality over quantity. Instead of opening in new locations, the corporation hopes to renovate “old and tired” stores that have not been updated in 10 years, according to WWD.

“Our supply chain has been a major focus,” Cornell tells WWD.

“We’re slow and we have too much inventory. We’re changing how we move product…We’ll operate with less inventory, less working capital and better shelf availability.”

Cathy Smith, Target Corp.’s executive vice president and chief financial officer, tells WWD the corporation “expects a low- to mid-single-digit decline in comparable sales and earnings per share of 80 cents to $1.” Smith also predicts earnings per share (EPS) of $3.80 to $4.20 in 2017.

“We’re positioned to deliver superior Return On Invested Capital over time,” Smith tells WWD. “Let me be clear, this will be a multiyear, multiphase program.”

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After years of speculation, the Arab world will finally have its own edition of the world’s leading fashion publication. Vogue Arabia, which will be available on newsstands March 5 throughout the Middle East and North Africa region (MENA), is the 22nd edition of the magazine, according to Vogue Arabia.

“It is the first Vogue to break onto the market in digital prior to print,” writes Philippa Morgan. The publication’s digital platform launched in October of 2016.

[source: Vogue Arabia]

Vogue Arabia’s first-ever cover star, revealed on March 1, is none other than social media It girl Gigi Hadid. The 21-year-old was born in Los Angeles, California to a Dutch-American mother and Jordanian-American father of Palestinian origin. She has been in a relationship with musician and former One Direction member Zayn Malik, who is of Pakistani decent, since 2015.

“Photographed by Inez and Vinoodh and styled by Brandon Maxwell, the evocative images emphasize the supermodel’s Arab roots,” according to Vogue Arabia.

“There’s no better first ‘face’ to lead the charge for Vogue Arabia than Gigi, a model who defines tomorrow’s entrepreneurial and dynamic generation,” Editor-in-Chief Deena Aljuhani Abdulaziz tells Morgan.

“In one poised photograph, she communicates a thousand words to a region that’s been waiting far too long for its Vogue voice to speak.”

[source: Vogue Arabia]

“The March issue, entitled ‘Reorienting Perceptions’, features established and up-and-coming designers, high fashion styled with modest flair and luxury lifestyle insights from across the Middle East with a unique Arabic twist on global high-fashion reportage,” reports Vogue Arabia.

Shashi Menon, CEO & Publisher of Vogue Arabia, tells Morgan: “With Vogue Arabia, we’re making a bold bet on the future of marquee, high-gloss content in the region—across both print and digital. The unparalleled heritage and global footprint of the Vogue brand, combined with our distinct strategy of publishing more than 90 percent original content with dual language editorial, really make Vogue Arabia stand out.”

[source: ATRL]

On March 1 Hadid, whose full name is Jelena Noura Hadid, shared her Vogue Arabia cover with her 30 million Instagram followers. A notorious “nice girl” in the traditionally stand-offish fashion industry, Hadid captions the photo:

“I think the beautiful thing about there being international Vogues is that, as a fashion community, we are able to celebrate, and share with the world, different cultures. Being half-Palestinian, it means the world to me to be on the first-ever cover(s) of @voguearabia, and I hope that this magazine will show another layer of the fashion industry’s desire to continue to accept, celebrate, and incorporate all people & customs and make everyone feel like they have fashion images and moments they can relate to… & learn and grow in doing so. Thank you @deenathe1st for your vision and for having me on this cover… by the incredible @inezandvinoodh–so much love.”

Vogue Arabia will be published in both Arabic and English.

[source: ATRL]

Though Hadid has a history of pride regarding her ethnic background, many Vogue readers were off-put by her Vogue Arabia cover.

“I’m bitter over the fact that Gigi only claims her Palestinian heritage when it benefits her. She didn’t deserve [the cover],” writes @starksteves on Twitter.

@__munneerraa, another Twitter user, writes in response to @VogueArabia: “Oh guys you should’ve put a proper Arab on the cover! Like the Abduls for instance!”

The Abduls are two Saudi blogger sisters, according to Vogue Arabia.

Aden stars on the cover of CR Fashion Book, on newsstands March 2nd [source: CR Fashion Book]

Several Twitter users, including @starksteves, shared that they wished Somali-American model Halim Aden landed the first Vogue Arabia cover. The 19-year-old immigrant, who wears a hijab, recently walked the runway for YEEZY Season 5, according to Fader; she also made it to the semifinals of 2016’s Miss Minnesota USA pageant and walked for Alberta Ferretti and Max Mara in Milan, according to Allure.

Hadid, who does not typically wear a hijab, dons an embellished one for her Vogue Arabia cover. However, she is been widely known to celebrate her Palestinian background.

“A year ago she posted a photo of herself with henna on her hands while with friends, adding a note at the end of her caption saying, ‘& before you go all ‘cultural appropriation’ in my comments, check out the last name. Hadid. Half Palestinian & proud of it,'” according to Vanity Fair.

“She also joined her sister Bella at a rally in New York in January to protest Donald Trump’s immigration policies.”

Gigi (left) and Bella (right) at a New York rally [source: Breitbart]

“This also marks a personal landmark for Hadid, as it is her 21st Vogue cover,” according to Vanity Fair.

“She continues to inch near the record held by Lauren Hutton with 26 covers, and told Ellen Degeneres in February that she ‘wouldn’t complain’ if she were to land a 27th. At this rate she’s well on her way.”

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When Are You Am I launched its six-piece swimwear collection last August, the Los Angeles-based brand also set forth one of the coming year’s major trends: bathing suits with ribbed outer shells.

Rumi Neely in AYAI swim [source: areyouami.com]

Three pieces in AYAI’s swimwear collection, including a one-piece, two tops and a bottom, feature delicately ribbed exteriors in a smooth nylon-lycra blend. The unique texture gives these minimalist-inspired bathing suits a sophisticated spin, and take the modern, standout shapes even further into the world of high fashion.

The collection’s color scheme, which includes Snow (a clean white) and Petal (a nude-y pale pink), allows these swimsuits that offer little or moderate coverage to remain tasteful. All the pieces in the collection are monochrome, adding to their stylish appeal.

The Daiquiri Suit by Minimale Animale [source: minimale-animale.com]

In January another LA-based brand called Minimale Animale, which designs and manufactures swimwear exclusively, launched its Resort 2017 collection, including a multitude of ribbed swimsuits. Minimale Animale, known for its sultry one- and two-pieces, took a slightly more conventional route for this season’s collection, dubbed M I N I M A L E.

While the collection is still risqué by traditional standards, the bathing suits offer slightly more coverage than a typical MA suit. String bottoms that are perfect for showing off a toned tush can be worn high or low on the waist, while statement-making tops allow Minimale Animale fans to mix, match and create dozens of different beach-ready looks.

Pieces from Minimale Animale’s Resort 2017 collection are available in five earthy colors: Cognac (a rich bronze), Sea Salt (classic white), Deep Seas (blackest black), Coconut (a sun-kissed nude) and Saffron (a golden mustard yellow). Much like Are You Am I, MA designs all its pieces as separates and in solid colors.

The Lagoon Top and The High Mirage Brief by Minimale Animale [source: minimale-animale.com]

Whatever your preferred swimsuit silhouette, up-and-coming brands like Are You Am I and Minimale Animale offer fashionable ribbed bikinis and one-pieces in plenty of different styles. Other favorites among bloggers, including Topshop and GNASHswim, also market their own takes on 2017s hottest swimwear trend.

Though many see one-pieces as unsexy, these ribbed suits are super sultry, both on their own, as well as layered under denim cutoffs. Similarly, ribbed bikini tops add a little flair to a plain baggy t-shirt or pair of shorts.

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After 70 years of being one of the most aloof high fashion brands, Paris-based CÉLINE created an official Instagram account (@celine) and announced plans to launch an e-commerce branch on its official website, according to The Fashion Law.

[source: The Fashion Law]

“Despite being one of the most influential (and highly copied) fashion brands on the market, under the direction of Phoebe Philo, Céline has maintained a low profile in terms of its retail footprint and distribution chain,” writes The Fashion Law.

“Moreover, it has traditionally eschewed most digital channels, making it one of the new brands lacking a social media presence and a website without e-commerce capabilities–until recently, that is. The brand launched an official Instagram account this week.”

These big changes come on the heels of another big change at CÉLINE; namely, the appointment of the company’s new CEO Séverine Merle, who will take office April 1. CÉLINE is one of the final LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton-owned house to launch an online store, following other big names such as Louis Vuitton, Fendi and Sephora, who have made significant sales via e-commerce.

CÉLINE ad campaign Spring 2017 [source: celine.com]

“Even if luxury purchases are not made online, the presence of an e-commerce strategy is essential, as more than 60 percent of luxury goods purchases, online or in-store, depend on what customers see on the web,” according to The Fashion Law.

As of February 28, CÉLINE amassed 56,700 Instagram followers and posted nine images in a few short days. Images include seven up-close shots of its Spring and Summer 2017 collections, as well as an apparent shot of a horse’s leg and one of an earthy lamppost captioned “Lamppost.”

“With the desirability created by Philo beginning in 2008, Céline’s sales are up and so, to meet demand, it has slowly moved to expand its retail network,” The Fashion Law writes.

“In September 2014, the brand opened its second brick-and-mortar store in New York – in Soho – the other New York location being uptown on Madison Avenue. This second New York store brought the total number of Céline stores in the U.S. to five (other locations include Bal Harbor, Las Vegas, and Beverly Hills).”

Pierre-Yves Roussel, Chairman and CEO of LVMH Fashion Group, insists CÉLINE’s e-commerce launch is crucial for showing “the breadth and depth of the collection,” according to British Vogue.

“We want to be very product-focused. It’s always been the motto of creative director Phoebe Philo since the very beginning,” Roussel continues.

Interestingly enough, Roussel is currently “filling the breach at CÉLINE since [former CEO Marco Gobbetti’s] departure” until Merle’s arrival at the company in April.

Gobbetti left the French fashion house last July after eight years. He is now poised to become Burberry’s next CEO, according to Business of Fashion; he will take the title from Christopher Bailey, who will in turn become the London-based luxury brand’s chief creative officer and president.

“Merle joins [CÉLINE] from another of LVMH’s labels, menswear brand Berluti, where she is currently executive vice president,” according to WWD.

Merle poses alongside Louis Vuitton luggage [source: Madame Figaro]

The Paris-based businesswoman also held previous positions at Kenzo and Louis Vuitton, according to her LinkedIn profile, two other LVMH brands.

Her prior experience makes her a promising authority to oversee the company’s first e-commerce endeavor.

Chris Morton, chief executive of Lyst.com, a multi-brand online luxury retailer in which LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault’s family investment company has a small stake, told The Fashion Law the following:

“A luxury brand that avoids the Internet is effectively refusing to engage with its customers where they are increasingly spending time and money. It is not listening to what its customers want, which is dangerous in any consumer-facing industry.”

Simply put, it would be in CÉLINE’s best interest to not ignore its customers in favor of maintaining its traditionally cool, distant ways. The brand’s customers are now online, so the brand itself should be more accessible via new media platforms, as well.

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