Cincinnati Boutique Sale Dates Announced

Today I was on Fox19 (click here to watch the video segment) talking about looks for New Year’s Eve. I picked four outfits from Paris J Boutique for the segment. In the green room as we were getting ready, Teresa the owner of Paris J, mentioned that the date for the Cincinnati Boutique Sale had just been selected and announced. I tried to contain my excitement, but I think I let out a little squeal. : )

They usually keep this date a secret until the very last minute because they don’t want their clients to hold off on buying things to get them at a discount at the sale. But, the cat’s officially out of the bag, so mark your calendars…

This Week on Cincy Chic: 2010 Woman of the Year

2010 Woman of the Yearnull
Entrepreneur, volunteer Kelly Hollatz

You nominated. The Cincy Chic staff voted. Now, for our fourth annual 2010 Woman of the Year Awards, we recognize seven women who make Cincinnati the great city it is. Read on to find out how our 2010 Feature Woman of the Year embodies it all.

Seeing to the Community’s Needs
This optometrist goes beyond her call of duty to help make sure everyone in the community has the opportunity for good vision. Learn how she donates her time and talent to help others see.

Cross-Atlantic Connector
She’s much more than a business-to-business connector. Read on to find out how this year’s Career Woman of the Year puts Cincinnati on the map for European business.

Expanding Fashion’s Horizons
After less than two years, this fashion blogger has staked her spot in the style world. Read on to find out how that spot makes her our Fashion Woman of the Year.

Aesthetically Pleasing
She works to bring out the natural beauty in others, but the true beauty is in her. Discover all the ways this local lady makes our city more beautiful, one facial or charitable contribution at a time.

Serving the Inn Crowd
Her hands-on leadership style helps low-income women in Cincinnati overcome their backgrounds. Read on to find out more about her nonprofit work.

Chic Spotlight: Circle Tail Owner Marlys Staley
This local philanthropist puts together her passions for dogs and helping others to make a difference for people with disabilities. Read on to learn more about her organization.

Orange on Green: Women of the Year in Finance
At the end of the day, it is really the women who are leading the charge in finance, not the men. So our financial columnists recognize some fabulous females in finance.

Upcoming Cincy Chic Events:
Jan. 4 – eWomenNetwork “Accelerated Networking” Event
Jan. 14 – New Year, New You
Jan. 20 – Free Lunch ‘n’ Learn: Chic Solutions for Looking and Seeing Better
Jan. 22 – Take Charge Seminars
Jan. 22 – Cincy Chic’s 4th Birthday Party
Jan. 25 – Women’s Initiative Annual Breakfast

Winter Wear for Urban Adventures

I got an email from a lady who lives downtown and often walks to appointments. She’s originally from the West Coast, so she needs help with what to wear to weather the Midwest’s Mother Nature. Here’s what she wrote…

Dear Amy & CincyChic clan—

I loved your fashion suggestions for Julie, who will be running around Europe soon. I need some help too!

I’m a recent transplant to Cincinnati. Coming from the warm West Coast,  I’m completely unprepared for this cold weather.  Mostly, I work out of my home and can wear casual clothes. But my biggest problem is when I have a meeting—what do I wear? I mean, from head to toe—I can’t figure out how to dress professionally (not suits) in this cold! What kind of shoes do people wear?

Then when I am wearing casual clothes, I live in OTR so I walk around a lot. What do I wear to stay warm, but not roast once I arrive at my destination?

HELP! I really appreciate the tips you gave to Julie, but I need a bit more info for those of us who have never even considered being fashionable in this weather. Thanks so much!


So, Drew and I brainstormed and came up with a few more ideas. Check out the video below!


Three Piles

Getting my LBD that I've had for two years (still brand new with tags) tailored at Atlas Cleaners in Newport

Last week, I stood in front of my closet for what felt like an eternity. I was looking at lots of clothes, but thinking “I have nothing to wear.”

I decided it was time to make three piles.

One is labeled “keep” (things that fit well and I wear often),  “donate” (things I’m just not in love with any more), and one “fix” (things that need tailored, hemmed or otherwise, well, fixed).

I do this piling performance once every few years to get rid of the gunk and get me out of a wardrobe funk! (I’m such a poet!) : ) After I’m done, even though I have fewer clothes, I always feel like I have more!

In case you find yourself in the near future standing in front of your closet thinking you have lots of clothes, but nothing to wear, here are some helpful hints for making your three piles:

Keep Pile
Yes, this pile is the sure bet. You know you like these items. But the problem is that you look at these items every day and feel bored and uninspired. So, try to find similar items online and see how other people are wearing them. For example, you have a LBD you know you want to keep. Google “little black dress accessorize” and see how other people are spicing up their LBDs!

Think long and hard about this one. Sure, it’s great to donate clothes to the needy. But don’t just chuck something because it’s out of style or you’re bored with it. Again, use Google, fashion magazines or your favorite fashion blogs to find inspiration if you’re on the fence about a piece. Take this plaid skirt that Tamia (another fab blogger) found while thrifting. At first glance, it looks unflattering and out of style. But with a couple safety pins, some creativity, pinning and draping… Tamia had a stylish skirt that mirrored the most fashion forward looks on the runways.

A few of the items I got fixed ... including my favorite dress (I had ripped the pocket in July) and my favorite boyfriend blazer (hem came out)

There are many reasons why you overlook items in your closet. “Those pants are a little too short,” “that skirt doesn’t hit at the right place,” “I ripped the pocket on those the last time I wore them”…. whatever it might be, you are taking up important real estate in your closet with these damaged goods, and the item’s “shelf life” of being in style is ticking away. While the stand-alone alterations places are few and far between, most dry cleaners have a seamstress in-house. So, take your items to the nearest dry cleaner to get your items fixed.

All in all, I donated 15 items (making room for 15 things Santa will hopefully bring me on Christmas!), I got 8 items fixed (including my favorite dress and boyfriend blazer) and I learned new ways to wear the rest.

I feel like I have a brand new closet! It was so refreshing to open up my closet door this morning and have the creative juices flowing… I actually had a tough time choosing what to wear this morning with all the options! What a good problem to have!

Have a very happy holiday!

Personalized Champagne

At Saturday's "CT Saturday Holiday Celebration"

Each Tuesday, I get together with three (some times four) of my best friends and we try a different type of champagne at a different local restaurant or bar. We’ve been doing this for the past three years. It started as a way to make sure we got together once a week. Then, as the recession really dug in its heels, it evolved as a way to give business to local establishments.

Usually the venue we visit is pretty empty on a Tuesday, which we like because it’s quiet and we can catch up. But two years ago, we decided to get together once on a Saturday instead of Tuesday. We did it during the holidays so we could exchange gifts, get dressed up and stay downtown.

The CT Saturday bottle I made on

This past Saturday was when we did this year’s “CT Saturday Holiday Celebration.” It was so much fun! We went to Bistro, FB’s and then Knock Back Nats. (yes, the night got progressively less classy) : )

Part of my gift to the girls was this special bottle of Moet which I got personalized at It was so cool I had to share. You just go to the site, choose your size of bottle, type in your message and then you can preview it and buy it if you want!

Thought I’d tell you about it, with New Year’s Eve coming up (how cool would it be to bring a personalized bottle as a host gift!) or maybe you have a little champagne group of your own!

This Week on Cincy Chic: 2010 Best of the Web

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A mag for your man

We love to hear feedback about how Cincy Chic helps you navigate your closet and your city all at the same time. But we couldn’t help but feel like the men were being left out. Now, Cincinnati Profile has filled the void and offers an online magazine geared toward Cincinnati men.

Collective Impact
Two heads are better than one, and Impact 100 applies this simple idea to turn individual donations into a group effort. Learn more about how you can be a part of making a true impact.

Cincy’s Social Scene Online
From musical performances to local attractions, this news outlet keeps you updated on all things Cincinnati entertainment. Learn more about how you can get all the information right online.

Sudsy Site
After her family’s life-changing switch in soaps, this local lady gives you the chance to buy affordable, locally made natural soaps in just a couple clicks of your mouse. Read on to find out more.

Store to Site Style
One local lifestyle store and consulting firm adds a virtual component. Find out how the company models its e-commerce site after its brick and mortar shopping experience.

Veg Out
Living in a meat-eaters’ world can be a dietary difficulty, and the eco-conscious want ways to stay green and local. One Web site makes it easier to navigate the city’s eco and vegetarian options.

Virtual Solutions for Real World Business
The virtual and real worlds can complement each other, especially in the professional arena. And this local lady proves it through her company’s technology-driven business solutions.

Chic Spotlight: Space513’s Cynthia Stanard
This local lady put her design skills to work on an interactive online guide to the city. Read on for an exclusive interview about how it all came about.

Vine + Table: Online Wine with A Bottle or Two
Shopping for wine just got simpler thanks to A Bottle or Two’s easy-to-use online tools. Our food and wine columnist shares how you can become your own sommelier.

McCoy on Movies: “Black Swan” Movie Review
It’s one of the most talked about movies of the season, but is this new thriller a blockbuster or just a bust? See what our reviewer had to say about it here.

Orange on Green: From One WIFE to Another
Started by two women, one unique Web site can help you learn more about your finances. Read on as our financial columnists share a tip of the trade.

Upcoming Cincy Chic Events: 
Jan. 4 – eWomenNetwork “Accelerated Networking” Event
Jan. 14 – New Year, New You
Jan. 20 – Free Lunch ‘n’ Learn: Chic Solutions for Looking and Seeing Better
Jan. 22 – Take Charge Seminars

Ask Amy: Dressing Up a Drab Navy Cardigan

This must be a big week for inquiring minds! I got another email from a reader. Earlier in the week, Julie asked for some winter wardrobe tips, and today’s is from Linda and she writes…

I bought a lovely J Crew Navy argyle wool cardigan for a fabulous price at the 4th street resale shop. However, I can’t find any pants that I think would look good with it other than jeans or khakis, and I’d like to wear it to the office.

I think the black pants make it look like i’m color blind and grey….well, it just doesn’t look right. Should I just save it for more casual days and not work?

Thank you!

So, Drew Ross, my style savvy intern, and I teamed up yet again in the video below to offer our cardi-crisis advice to this damsel in distress!


Have a question for me? Click here for my contact info!

Tom Ford Trunk Show Tomorrow at Gamine

What do Angelina Jolie and Jennifer Aniston have in common… other than Brad Pitt? Tom Ford Sunglasses of course!

They’ve both been spotted trotting around Tinseltown in these spectacular specs. Lots of other stars love this brand, too…  Gwenyth. Rihanna, Demi, and Kim Kardashian just to name a few.

Me in my Tom Fords... this picture makes me laugh every time. A friend snapped it while I was test driving a super fun SmartCar convertible!

Well, here’s your chance to share shades with the stars. I just found out about a Tom Ford sunglass trunk show going on tomorrow at Gamine, an adorable store in Dayton (promise it’s worth the drive). On Dec. 16 from 1-5pm, their Tom Ford rep will be at the store that day with all the latest styles for women and men.

They’re giving 15% off all Tom Ford Sunglasses purchases that day. Plus, if you bring in an unwrapped toy for them to donate, they’ll give you an additional 5% off your Tom Ford purchase! The price tag for this brand averages around $300-$400, so a 20% discount can save you a big chunk of change.

Here’s where you can find Gamine (formerly The Pink Daisy):
2504 Far Hills Ave.
Dayton, OH 45419

Like I said, it’s a drive, but I promise it’s worth it! They carry lines by Velvet, Milly, Nanette Lepore, Michael Stars, Tory Burch, J Brand, Susanna Monaco, Chan Luu, Kendra Scott, Big Buddha, Joie, Paige Denim, Diane von Furstenburg and Theory. Gamine is like Cincy’s north star of fashion!

Ask Amy: Winter Wardrobe Tips

I got an email last week from a reader who needed some advice about what to wear on a trip she’s taking to Europe. Here’s the email I received…

I have a problem. Every time I go to europe, I feel like a frump.  I’m trying to figure out what to add to my wardrobe to make me feel slightly less frumpy.  I bought some knee-high, flat-ish boots yesterday as I’ve learned that high heeled boots + European streets = ow.  I have, of course, jeans (which I plan to tuck into said boots).  I also have very cute, comfortable ankle boots, a cute cloche, and a sequinny beret.  I’ll be wearing a coat that I’m going to have shortened a tad.  I’m guessing I’ll be in shades of black, grey, and maroon all around.

So, what should I be focusing on?  I’m a little afraid to do the tunics + leggings thing because of my, erm, assets.  I don’t know how many skirts I want to wear because it’s so cold (unless I do the layered stocking thing which I would do).  And since my boots were kind of pricey, I’m looking to not spend a lot.  Help!

She doesn’t want to look like your typical American schlumpadinka in tennis shoes and sweat pants. But it’s going to be cold, and she’s going to be walking a lot, so she doesn’t want to be uncomfortable, either.

I can completely understand that. It’s tough to look fashionable in frigid weather. But with all the pictures taken on a trip like this, you want to look halfway decent in those snapshots hanging around your house for the rest of your life. Plus, you’re roaming around in some of the most fashion-forward cities in the world, so a fanny pack and Nikes are going to put a huge bullseye on your back for tourist-targeting trouble makers.

So, my intern Drew Ross and I sat down and brainstormed some ideas in the below webcast. One thing I forgot to mention in the video is that sweater dresses are great for travel. They’re fashionable, you can dress them up or down, and they give you even more warmth and coverage than a regular sweater. The rest of our tips are in the video. Check it out! Thanks to Johnny Depp for making a cameo in our video! haha! : )


Have a question for me? Click here for my contact info!

This Week on Cincy Chic: Businesses Big and Small

Businesses Big and Smallnull
Local chambers help all sizes

Cincinnati has a wealth of large corporations and a nice selection of smaller operations. The city needs all company sizes to function, and chambers help support the success and growth of these companies. This week we feature three local chambers and how they help local businesses.

A (Financial) Community Effort
Everyone has money matters. Find out how Orangefinancial takes the guess work out of your finances and supplies you with education, confidence and support to help you take control.

Compostable Cooperation
This week is all about big and small businesses, so we had to include the partnership between Wal-Mart and one local small business. Find out how this connection means a healthier Earth.

Beauty in a Bottle
Two local companies help you tame your tresses with their hair care product lines. Find out how international players and locally focused companies alike can make a difference for your hair.

Best Places to Work Give Back
Two of the city’s best places to work share the philosophy that a prosperous company serves a public need. Read on to learn what companies run by this motto.

Uncorking a New Restaurant
With Cincinnati’s rich wine history, there’s still room for more, especially for this new wine shop/upscale restaurant. Discover how you can expand your palate in a comfortable atmosphere.

Near-Future Fashion
From a national brand to a local designer, 2011’s fashion definitely has some surprises in store for your wardrobe. To find out a little more about what you have to look forward to, keep reading.

Chic Spotlight: Lawyer-Turned-Fashionista Amy Hendy
After four years in her career, one local lawyer wanted a change of professional pace. Learn how this personal fashion consultant made her career change in our exclusive interview.

Total Body Wellness: Preventing Cancer
Cancer is a disease that impacts the lives of so many families. Read on to learn more about how you can keep yourself and your loved ones out of harm’s way.

McCoy on Movies: “The Tourist” Movie Review
Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie are back in theaters this week as star-crossed travelers in “The Tourist.” Our critic let’s you know if their journey is a first class ticket or a ride in coach.

Upcoming Cincy Chic Events:
Dec. 14 – Business at Breakfast: The Five Most Frightening Words
Dec. 14 – eWomenNetwork “Accelerated Networking” Event
Dec. 16 – World’s Largest Office Party
Jan. 14 – Save the Date New Year, New You
Jan. 20 – Free Lunch ‘n’ Learn: Chic Solutions for Looking and Seeing Better

From the Publisher of Cincy Chic