As you learned in my last blog, my husband and I were in LA last week so he could do a performance with Nancy Cartwright of Bart Simpson fame.
Sure, I could talk about the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity it was to be a dinner guest at Nancy’s home and to see my husband perform up on stage with Hollywood’s finest. But on the other hand, I could talk about the $500 boots I got for FREE at Nordstrom in LA.
I will talk about Nancy in a future blog (and share pics!), but I need to give my fellow shop-o-holics the excuse you need to go to LA and shop.
So, as you can imagine, it’s warm in LA right now. Actually, it was borderline hot a couple of the days we were out there. The day Cincinnati got several inches of snow? Yeah, I was lounging by a pool.
How does this relate to free boots at Nordstrom? Well, I discovered that the supply and demand for winter clothes and shoes in LA isn’t what it is in Cincinnati. Anything pseudo wintery was marked waaaay down. It was unbelievable. So, I dashed over to their boot rack and found some incredible over-the-knee black suede boots. Originally $500, marked down to $60-something dollars! I had a $100 gift card my co-workers got me for my birthday (I’ve been a good girl … I’ve waited since June to use it!). So, I got the boots, flip flops (which were ironically full price), and suede protectant spray with my gift card. Thus, free! : )
I have since worn them twice, and I’m wearing them today! They are so comfortable and practical! They keep my legs so warm! I took a page out of the Kasmira book of tricks and wore colorful leggings with the boots so just a little pop of color peeks through the top of the boot and the bottom of my dress.
So, a word to the frugal fashionitas out there, take a trip to LA in the dead of winter and stock up on all your winter wear. You’ll pay for the trip with all your savings. At least that’s how I rationalized it every time I swiped my credit card! : )
That’s right, my husband wooed me with a Homer Simpson impersonation. When I met my now-husband, Pete Scalia, he was a traveling musician and voice-over artist. Today, he is the morning anchor at Fox 45/ABC 22 in Dayton, but he still does music and voice-overs on the side.
A few months ago, Nancy Cartwright, the voice of Bart Simpson (who is originally from the Dayton area), came back to her hometown and Pete got to do an interview with her. They became fast friends, and before he knew it, she was asking him to do “theater of the mind” performances to raise money for charity. He did one recently in Dayton and he has one coming up this week in LA.
We are so excited! Pete has a performance this week in LA with a superstar (literally) cast mates, who include: Robert Towers (“Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” Benjamin 1932-1934), Nancy Cartwright (voice of Bart Simpson), Phil Proctor (Big Brother, Rugrats, Finding Nemo, and Princess and the Frog), Josh Robert Thompson (voice of “Fake” Arnold Schwarzenegger on “Late Late Show With Craig Ferguson”) and narrated by R.F. Daley (Broadway actor “Cats” and “Sweeny Todd”).
The event will take place at the Golden Age Theater on Hollywood Blvd, which requires “theater attire.” And afterward, Nancy invited us to dinner at her house. Talk about a big night for us!
Cheering on my talented husband as he plays the LEAD character (!!!), rubbing elbows with a “Curious Case of Benjamin Button” cast member (aka one degree away from Brad Pitt), and eating dinner at Bart Simpson’s house. Who does that? And more importantly, what do you wear to that?
I peered into my closet and asked each piece if they could rise to this fine occasion. Each one sagged with unworthiness as they shook their cowl, turtle and v-necks in disappointment. I came to the conclusion that I need to splurge (I actually haven’t been shopping in a couple months!), and buy a special outfit for this star spangled night in the Hollywood hills.
I visited my favorite local experts, boutiques and stores, and came up with this ensemble that twinkles with gold, glitz and glamor. Most were splurge pieces, but my focal point dress was a steal of a deal. What do you think?
Making up is Hard to Do Resolutioners reveal their progress
At the beginning of the year, three women won makeover packages through Cincy Chic, and they’re back to let you know how well they’ve stuck to their New Year’s resolutions. Check out the “before” and “after” of these local ladies.
New Non-Invasive Cosmetic Procedures
Going under the knife isn’t for everyone. One local doctor gives us the scoop on two new – even better – options for freshening up your face and beautifying your body for the holidays and New Year.
A Diamond in the Rough
Give yourself a new jewelry wardrobe with the one you already have. Learn how this local gem can turn your unused jewelry into chic pieces you won’t want to take off.
Tonic without the Twist
Put down that Red Bull and vodka, and pour out your “light” beer. It’s time for a spirited makeover, so grab your gals and become a part of the “cocktail cultural renaissance”!
Turning Beauty Inside Out
Home is where the heart is, and that’s where beauty should be too, so this local massage therapist brings the spa to you as you celebrate life with friends.
Just after “The Biggest Loser” finale, you might be looking for a body transformation, and this local fitness facility has what it takes to help make that happen.
Upping the WOW Factor
Take your house’s curb appeal to new heights with this local mother and son who have made over their careers so that they can make over your house. Learn how this Tri-State team keeps the city blooming with possibilities.
Cents & Sensibility: Money Makeover
Getting out of debt sounds great. It’s just getting there that’s the problem. Learn how our financialista found financial freedom with her own money makeover and how you can too.
Chic Eats: Roasted Grape Tartines
Wow family and friends with a modern version of the tartine. Our new Chic Chef whips up these simple but elegant appetizers you can add to your culinary repertoire.
Media Maven: “Julie and Julia” Movie Review
Just released on DVD and Blu-ray Dec. 8, this movie might make a great holiday gift for the food lover on your list. Our Media Maven helps you decide.
Well, it happened for the first time this year. I pulled on my favorite sweater and my whole head of hair started to magically levitate. ‘Tis the season’s static greetings!
Conveniently, I spent a good majority of my day at Tuscany Spa and Salon in Montgomery covering an upcoming makeover story we’re doing for Cincy Chic. So, while I was there, I asked the GM, Liz Reaney how to tame my tresses during the winter months.
Here’s what she said:
Always use a Leave-In conditioner during the winter months. Choose a conditioner with a thermal protectant to help with static.
When you have trouble with fly-a-ways, take a very small amount of pomade, rub it in your hands thoroughly before putting in your hair.
Use a hydrating shampoo during the winter months to add moisture to your hair.
Try a hydrating hair masque once a week to keep your hair in great condition.
When you schedule your next hair appointment, add on a deep conditioning treatment to help prevent your hair from drying out.
For your hands and feet, paraffin treatments are perfect in the winter. The oils in the paraffin help with cracked, dry nails and leave your skin soft and smooth.
Use a hydrating facial mask once a week in the winter to combat the harsh elements.
I thought these were great tips so I wanted to share! : ) Oh, and I go in for a haircut/color on Monday… wondering what to do. I feel like I need a change, but I’m not sure what to do. Suggestions are welcome!
I swear, a few minutes every week with a makeup artist can really open your eyes. Literally.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been getting in a weekly dose of Nancy at Brideface because I just love all the fun little pointers I pick up when I spend time with her.
I recently participated in her “Brows for a Cause” brow-shaping event she’s doing. Every Wednesday in December, she’ll shape your brows for $15 and 100% of the proceeds go to the American Heart Association.
I thought it was such a great idea that I blogged about it last week before I went. I knew I’d learn a ton, so I recorded it for you so you can see what “Brows for a Cause” is like and pick up all Nancy’s tips so you can DIY at home! (e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to sign up for a Brows for a Cause appointment)
Watch the video below to see how Nancy expertly shaped my brows, the tools she used and products she loves!
When I asked the owner of the new FB’s bar downtown what “FB” stood for, he just smiled and said “whatever you want it to stand for.”
I was intrigued with the ambiguity and creativity. But I couldn’t come up with anything fitting. The first thing that came to my mind was Facebook, because we shorthand “FB” for Facebook at work all…the…time. So, I asked some of my Twitter friends what they thought. My favorite ideas were from @begleyh who suggested Fancy Boots, Funny Bones and Falling Boobs. : )
Falling boobs or not – whatever it stands for, I think it’s a fun concept, and it adds a little character and spontaneity to Cincinnati’s bar scene. Another thing I like about FB’s is their Alice in Wonderland “with a Twist” atmosphere. Remember the Twist Lounge that was next to Pigalls? I loved that place. I loved the feel of the space and the mix of people. There were people of all ages there, and everyone got dressed up to go. I liked that and I couldn’t find it again after it closed.
Even though Twist reopened as Tonic – and I do really like Tonic – it just feels different. They now serve food there (which changes the atmosphere), they added more furniture (which changes the flow), and a bunch of other things changed like the music/clientele/drinks/etc. I like it, but it’s different than before.
I found out this new place called FB’s would be opening up and I heard they wanted to attract the Twist demographic. That caught my attention. Then I saw the space. It’s fantastic. Bold patterned wall paper, over-sized furniture, and a funky color scheme. There are some hints of Mad Hatter/Alice in Wonderland inspirations speckled throughout and I think that’s fun to look around and pick those out. Like a blue old fashioned telephone on a coffee table, a huge yellow chair, and a checkerboard table in the middle of the lounge.
The main floor is a cocktail lounge that caters to the casually upscale (not snooty or hoity toity at all). Downstairs, aka the “Rabbit Hole,” is a nightclub on weekends (not my scene). Anyone can get in the nightclub or on the main floor, but only those on “the list” can get upstairs. I’ve never been on this mysterious list, so I don’t know what it’s like up there. But I do really, really like the main floor. It fits the bill for what I was looking for in a sophisticated but not stuffy, refined but relaxed downtown happy hour hangout.
I especially liked the crowd – very urban chic. I talked to a couple in their mid-40s. He had just moved from NYC and got a job here in the arts. She was a dental hygienist on the West Side. They live downtown.
I also talked to a few other YPs, ranging from 25-45ish, who lived in the suburbs and were there for our friend Monika’s birthday party. It’s a very suburb-friendly place because there’s a $1 for 2 hours lot literally 10 steps away, right across the street, from FB’s.
You do have to know where you’re going though. The owners want the place to be discreet and only be known by those who need to know about it. On the upside, there aren’t cheesy neon signs flashing outside. On the downside, that means you need to get your eagle eyes out to spot it. For future reference, it’s at 126 W. 6th Street, about 50 yards down from Walgreens.
One of the cool things I suggest you splurge on is their “TSM” service. It’s tableside mixology, which means you essentially get a private bar and tender for an evening. This isn’t the “table service” which basically means they slop a couple bottles of booze on your table and say “make it yourself” but charge you out the wazoo for it. TSM is a great way to get the attention you want and need for a special night out without fighting a crowd or wasting time waiting in line at a bar.
The owners said they’re going to have an incredible New Year’s Eve party there. I didn’t get many details because I will be out of town, but I hear it is sponsored by a huge champagne company and will be tres tres chic. Sounds like a place we’d definitely be if we were in town (I’ll be in a Gatlinburg cabin with my hubby and puppy though!). If you’re interested, I’m sure you can call FB’s and get more info.
And just because I’m on a makeup kick this week, I’ll throw in a little NYE makeup trend to end this post since we’re on the topic of the big ball-dropping night (already, seriously, can you believe it’s almost 2010?!). So, here’s my prediction…. EYELASHES. The funkier the better. Feathers, sparkles and lace (yes, even lace). The more elaborate the better. Make them too lush to be true. Here’s some inspiration for your FBs (Fake Blinkers)! : )
In my short 27 years on this Earth, I’ve seen eyebrows change more than Chad Johnson/Ocho Cinco/Esteban changes names.
It all started when Brooke Shields threw away her tweezers in the 80s. Women eventually got tired of brushing back their bushy brows, and they started penciling in super skinny brows like Pamela Anderson. We went au naturale for a while and now we’re trending back to a bold brow.
To help us keep up with the tweezing trends, one of my favorite local makeup artists – Nancy with Brideface – is hosting “Brows for a Cause” each Wednesday in December from 11am-6pm. Make and appointment via email to email@example.com and get flawlessly shaped brows for a $15 donation. 100% of the proceeds go to The American Heart Association! What a great idea, huh? : )
And in light of this fun event, I’m going to report on what I think are going to be a few big eyebrow/makeup trends in 2010.
What can brown do for you? It can get you en vogue with this season’s trends. The whole spectrum – everything from hot cocoa all the way to light dusty brown – is on trend, and should be on your eyes.
Also, in terms of colors, you have to take into consideration the impact of trends like Twilight saga. Check out the Cincy Chic feature story on Nordstrom’s exclusive Luna Twilight beauty line, which is an entire line of bloody lipsticks that are flying off the shelves.
Thick black and brown eyebrows are a makeup trend for 2009-2010. They brightly contour the eye shadow and draw attention to the eye.
Fall-Winter 2009/2010 makeup mixes up colorless eyes and bright lips, glam eyes and pale lips supplemented with cheeks and eyebrows hues. It’s a time where we’re testing limits, so have fun with it!
This month has been one for the records. It all started two weeks ago when, on my morning jog, I was literally hit by a pick-up truck. The driver didn’t see me when I crossed the street – luckily only resulting in some bumps and bruises. A week later, our upstairs toilet malfunctioned, overflowed, kept running and poured water throughout three stories of our home while we slept. We are now in the process of tearing out one bathroom and repairing the other two floors (yay home ownership). And the third in this terrific trifecta happened last week when my Grandma took a serious tumble and is now left with two black eyes – what she is affectionately calling her “broken face.”
But, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I’m trying to see the positive in all of this. The truck incident will make me more aware of my surroundings when I run (and look both ways 18 times before crossing!), the bathroom issue is actually resulting in a brand new bathroom (we were planning to repair anyway) on our insurance’s dime, and the third gave me the excuse to bring my Grandma lunch today to make her feel better.
Someone once told me “You can tell a lot about a person by the way they handle three things: a rainy day, lost luggage and tangled Christmas tree lights” and it’s so true. While none of those things happened to me, I experienced my own variation. And now, instead of being sad they happened, I’m actually…. thankful.
I have another thing to be thankful for, too. I’m officially “Aunt Amy”! My brother and his wife, Erin, had a beautiful baby girl named Sara Paige last Monday night. She’s beautiful and perfect and I love her so much already.
Maybe the new addition to the family got me in the giving spirit, or maybe I just love shopping, but I’m almost completely done with my holiday shopping! I wish I could tell you what I purchased, but my friends and family frequent this blog too much for me to not let the cat out of the bag.
All I’m going to say is that I’m completely in love with Stop Traffick Fashion. A local woman (with a fabulous fashion sense) started an online shopping site where you can get the latest and greatest handbags, jewelry and skin care, and proceeds benefit victims of human trafficking.
Click here to check out an upcoming shopping event they’re having at The McAlpin downtown on 4th St on Dec. 5. She has some gorgeous products, and they look even better in person, so I highly recommend you come to this event!
But there’s lots of goodies to gobble up in the meantime with all the price-slashing going on this Friday! Below are my top picks for the Tri-State’s best Black Friday Sales!
Black Friday Sale at Missy & Jack!
Friday November 27, 8 a.m.-8 p.m.
Take 25% OFF the entire store! Enjoy pastries and apple spritzers all day long while you shop and check out their latest collections, which include: Citizens of Humanity, LA MADE, Hudson Jeans, Michael Stars, Paige Denim
obsess boutique – 20% off!
At obsess boutique, mention “Cincy Chic” and save 20% off retail on any item! Sale ends Nov. 27! Click here to see a recent fashion show we did with obsess boutique clothing and Stop Traffick handbags!
Cincy Designer Shoes Holiday Sale
Tuesday, November 24th, 2009 – Sunday, November 29th, 2009
Cincy Designer Shoes is having one heck of a holiday sale. More than 40% of its inventory has been reduced 15-35%. In addition to those mark downs, they’re offering an additional 15% off this week only! While you’re there, register to win a free pair of Dezario Boots!
La Silhouette Lingerie – Anniversary Sale
This isn’t a Black Friday sale, but it’s a sale nonetheless. La Silhouette is celebrating two years in the Tri-State! To celebrate, they’re offering 20% off today through December 5, 2009 on non-sale merchandise.
La Silhouette carries the world’s top lingerie brands like: Bagley Mischka, Betsey Johnson, Cass and Co., Chantelle, Cosabella, Elle Macpherson, Feraud, Foxers, Hanky Panky, Huit, Jane Woolrich, La Perla, Millesia, Natori, Oscar de la Renta, Prima Donna, Simone Perele, Verena, and Wolford.
Richter and Phillips Second Annual Watch Trunk Show
Want to get the man in your life a timeless holiday gift this year? Skip the Black Friday rush and head to Richter and Phillips second annual Watch Trunk Show will on Friday December 4th from 9 a.m. to 5p.m. and Saturday December 5th from 10 a.m. to 5p.m. Special pricing on all Major Swiss Watch Brands Omega, Tag Heuer, Tissot, Rado, Movado, Michele, Philip Stein, Hamilton and others.
My friends and I love to have spa nights. We do our own manis and pedis, and have even hosted spa parties where a consultant comes in and does facials, skin peels and makeup applications.
We look fabulous when we’re done, but we usually just sit around in our sweats drinking wine and watching Sex and the City.
That’s where the idea to have a “Martinis and Makeover” Cincy Chic ladies night came from. How fun would it be to have an event where you can grab a cocktail after work, get dolled up with your friends and paint the town for the rest of the night sporting your new look?
That’s what you can do this Wednesday as we bring some of the best and brightest experts in town to show you some of the latest and greatest trends … with a twist… we asked them to show you special holiday glam tricks and trends to look hot for the holidays!
So, come on down to the Havana Martini Club this Wednesday (Nov. 18) from 5-8pm, grab a happy hour martini and enjoy your free holiday glam makeovers from experts like Nancy at Brideface who is giving you some eye-popping advice in the video below as a sneak peek for this Wednesday’s event! Enjoy!
I love it when I can get a taste of big-city life without leaving the comfort of my hometown. And every time I step into Soho Boutique in Hyde Park, I feel that way… from the off-the-beaten path boutique location and hand-painted stairs into the boutique, to the floor-to-ceiling gold encrusted mirror and daily changing floor displays. I absolutely love it.
Amy Maynard, the new owner of Soho, and I have become good friends since she purchased the boutique this summer. She is so friendly and down-to-earth, but the girl knows what she’s talking about when it comes to fashion. Especially fashion for the local lady (let’s be honest, not everything on the runway looks right at Skyline).
One of the best perks of her job is that she gets to write off her trips to Soho for “research and development.” (smart girl!) : ) She just got back from one of these trip to the Big Apple. That got my wheels turning on how my Cincy Chic readers can learn from experts like her. I came up with this concept where we can build off our popular lunch ‘n’ learn idea (where once a month we bring in one expert and invite our readers to enjoy lunch and learn about the topic for free), but this time bring in several experts from several industries to talk about trends in their specific niches.
So, on Nov. 20 from 12-1 at the Chamber of Commerce downtown (3rd floor of Carew Tower) we will have Amy from Soho Boutique talking about clothing trends, Rick Fehr from Richter & Phillips talking about jewelry and Rhonda from Missy & Jack talking about scarves and pashminas. From 1-2, there will be a trunk show where you can snag any of the items you just learned about! It’s free to attend and it includes a free boxed lunch. But we can only let the first 80 RSVPs in, so reserve your spot quickly! Send an e-mail to RSVP@cincychic.com or call (513) 721-2445 if you’re interested in attending! Hope to see you there! : )
Check out the video below where Amy from Soho gives you a sneak peek into a few of the biggest trends she’ll be talking about on Friday!