I’ll always remember Dooney & Bourke as the “must have” purse of my 8th grade class alongside the ubiquitous Liz Claiborne crossbody with the embossed triangle print. I’ll also remember the hunter green “Dooney & Bourke-inspired” bag as the first — and last — purse I’d ever buy on Canal Street (and when the signature duck logo popped off while paying the bill at a restaurant one day, much to my disappointment). I’ve since forgiven my 13-year-old self and treasure the lesson I learned: never go faux again.
That goofy gaffe came right back when I saw the Dooney & Bourke 2015 summer shoot took place here in Newport earlier this year aboard one of my very favorite boats — Columbia, the baby blue-hulled 12 meter. She was the first 12 meter America’s Cup winner and set the bar when it came to grace and elegance under pressure. An Olin Stephens design, Columbia enjoys an enviable pedigree and prestigious victories in regattas across the globe. Today, she is available for charter via 12 Meter Charters.
See the entire shoot by CLICKING HERE.
One of my favorite yet sometimes overlooked shops in all of Newport is the Brick Market: Museum & Shop at the foot of Washington Square. It’s full of a well-curated collection of coastal décor, Newport-centric gifts, fun finds for kids, jewelry and home treasures.
But the shop just unveiled a very fitting piece: the Stamp Act bracelet, made right here in Rhode Island by Luca + Danni. The bracelet features a copy of the stamp that was issued upon paying the tax that for the 1765 Stamp Act. The tax sparked a riot in Newport which become one of the first incidents that led to the American Revolution. (Remember that whole “No taxation without representation” history lesson?)
Sat., Aug. 29, 205, the Newport Historical Society will host a Stamp Act Protest in Washington Square that recreates life in colonial Newport and includes a reenactment of the 1765 riots. Proceeds raised from this limited edition bracelet support hosting the Stamp Act Protest which is free to attend. The bracelet, which comes in two colors, naturally oxidized brass or silver plated wire, retails for $34. It’s available for purchase the Brick Market: Museum & Shop at 127 Thames Street and online HERE.
More fab finds from Brick Market: Museum & Shop:
If the eyes are the window to the soul, then the eyebrows are the window treatments.
When Cranston, Rhode Island’s own Olivia Culpo enjoyed a meteoric rise from local pageant girl to Miss Rhode Island to Miss USA to ultimately Miss Universe (and now, bonafide , her perfect arches made quite an impression. “Completely hypnotic” described Glamour magazine. Then just this week, the magazine asked, “If These Eyebrows Aren’t Everything, We Don’t Know What Is.” (It’s Lipstick.com’s first-ever Eyebrow Week, in case that wasn’t already marked on your calendar…) Her enviable arches are credited to the handiwork of Mari Capuano at Rinnovo Salon in Culpo’s hometown and allegedly maintained by celebrity makeup artist Robert Sesnek now that she’s hit the big time.
Equally captivated by Culpo’s awesome arches and paired with a skimpy set by comparison, I was intrigued when I discovered the Chella Brow & Eye Collection at the unveiling of the newly branded SpaFjör at The Hotel Viking, (at left). Color kits to conditioners, heated curlers to highlighters, masks to mascaras, and tweezers to treatments are made by Chella which has brow bars worldwide (none are local but we have the amazing teams at ArchBeauty and The Apothecary)!
Soon, I was tearing into a “Ciao, Perfect Brows Eyebrow Treatment Kit” (at right) which includes a 6mL tube of Prostaglandin-Free Chella Brow Full-Fillment Eyebrow Treatment, 4 eyebrow stencils and Chella’s Beautiful Eyebrow Instructional DVD all in a custom tri-fold Chella Eyebrow Organizer with 8 individual pockets. After watching the DVD, and with the help of the stencils (so fun to play with these! Some are more dramatic than others and I found it best to use the stencils as more of a helpful guide). The only items the kit doesn’t come with the eyebrow pencil and/or power which makes sense as you’d be more inclined to get the shades that match your hair color/skin tone best. I was most intrigued by the eyebrow treatment which indeed conditioned the brow (it’s a non-irritating soft gel that goes on at night). After about 6 weeks, I saw a definite improvement, though Chella recommends allowing at least 90 days to let the treatment fully work it’s magic. The pieces from the kit can be bought separately as well, so if your awesome arches are already in the Brooke Shields brow stratosphere, you won’t need the treatment but can benefit from the myriad Chella eyebrow, eyeliner and shadow collections plus lash treatments, masks, tools and more.
For more brow-wow, follow Chella on Instagram and Twitter (both: @ChellaBeauty).
NEWPORTERS: August is Local Appreciation Month at SpaFjör at The Hotel Viking! Enjoy a 50-minute Ocean Breeze Massage, 50-minuteSea of Life Facial or Coconut Manicure and Pedicure for just $99 (INCLUDING gratuity) and a glass of champagne!
Disclosure: I was provided a complimentary Chella Perfect Brows Eyebrow Treatment Kit for purposes of this review. Opinions expressed are independent and my own.
I’ve watched the growth of the Newport International Polo Series over the past decade. The crowds have grown larger, the tailgates more elaborate, the enclosure more extravagant and the personal style more celebrated. The best thing about the style at polo is that it’s as laid-back or as “la-ti-da” as you wish–just leave any pretension at the gate. I’ve donned everything from my most comfy white skinny jeans and a casual tunic with flats to whimsical over-sized hats with a favorite Lilly shift.
The key, no matter what you’re wearing, is to don smart shoes. For one, you’re standing most of the day. Second: hello? Stomping divots is a bonafide tradition at polo — flip flops simply wont get the job done (tip: make sure what you’re stomping is a divot…). Lastly, you’re on a grass field — plan accordingly (I’ve seen spike heels sink into that grass quicker than a glamour gal’s ego).
That’s why I was psyched to partner with Rockport for a fun polo-infused collaboration. I was challenged to create my perfect look for “A Day at the Match with Rockport.” It was a warm summer say so my philosophy was tow fold: keep it simple. less is more. The look from head to toe: whimsy Madagascar raffia sun hat in lime green, 100% cotton Dobby V-neck fit & flare dress from the Gap in white, natural woven belt and Rockport’s Garden Court Perf T-Strap wedge in Valigia plaid. Oh, and with a little baby in the picture, I had about five whole minutes to pull it all together. The built-in ADIPRENE® by adidas sport technology helped provide shock-absorbing heel cushioning throughout the day while the 2.75 in. added a feminine lift mines too much height. Without further ado, voila!
(The true test of these sandals was on Sunday when I literally wore them to an early morning mass, pushing the stroller, all the way until 11pm. Literally. It was one of those go-go-go days.)
There’s an amazing end-of-season sale happening right now at Rockport’s Newport location at 240 Thames Street but if you covet some kicks from the fall collection, and you might very well do so, here’s a 20% off in-store coupon — just in time for September shopping sprees (click on the pic and print out or if there are any issues, email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Also, the Newport International Polo Series continues through the end of September. Click here for a match schedule and ticket options and get your tailgating on!
I celebrated the arrival of Sequin stores here in Newport since day one; not only because their designs are stunning, creative, contemporary yet vintage-inspired and cost-effective, but because the trio of local shops add beauty to our streetscapes. Also, founders Kim and Linda Renk, along with Creative Director Tara Malkovich, are an inspiration. They’ve supported
many charities via their designs including a cause close to my heart, animals in need. Just some of the beneficiaries of their generosity include our own Potter League for Animals, the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation, the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center and other animal rescues near and far.
Most recently, I discovered their stunning Color Karma Collection which features colored stones “that represent qualities and moods that we all experience or strive for.” Featuring versatile and vibrant semi-precious stones along with charms cast with original Sequin illustrations, these bracelets are an effortless wardrobe staple.
I’ve been wearing “Happy,” a set of four semi-precious beaded stretch bracelets in turquoise (one in pearl) with crystal accents and a seashell charm; “Balanced,” a set of four in green with crystal accents (one in pearl) and an abstracted Earth charm; and “Sincere,” a set of four in cobalt blue (one in pearl) with crystal accents and a starry sky charm. They’re interchangeable, stackable and go from the boardroom to a beach party to a night on the town:
(Above: wearing “Sincere” at Au Courant)
Sure you can get Sequin at Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus, Henri Bendel and Bloomingdales, as well as select specialty boutiques nationwide, but they’re right here in Newport at all three shops (two on Bellevue, one on Thames).
To discover all the sets and their meanings behind each one, CLICK HERE.
Find Sequin shops at 474 Thames Street, 182 Bellevue Avenue, and 119 Bellevue Avenue. A great time to check out the collection is at this weekend’s Bellevue Avenue Sidewalk Sale, Aug. 7, 8 & 9, 2015
Disclosure: I was given these Sequin sets gratis to experience and review. As always, opinions expressed are independent and my own.
Clove, cardamom, cinnamon, black pepper, honey, clove, nutmeg…it reads like ingredients for a creative contemporary dish only instead, it’s just some of the spectrum of spices used in Comme des Garçons parfums. The label, which roughly translated means “like the boys,” is the fragrance arm of the Tokyo-based fashion house known for unconventional conceptual style. It should come as no surprise then, that the distinct fragrances, which first launched in 1994 and expanded over the past 20 years, similarly take an avant-garde approach.
With a curated collection of U.S. retailers, I was pleased to learn this globally-lauded line just hit the shelves at Newport’s own Soap + Water on Bowen’s Wharf. These include the four Comme des Garçons premium lines: Wonderwood, Man (the only non-unisex scent), Amazing Green, Hinoki and Commes des Garcons 2 (retail for $131).
There are four selections from the Series 3 Incense line which is devoted to five scared places associated with global religions : Avignon (Catholic), Ouarzazate (Islam), Zagorsk (Orthodox Christianity), Jaisalmer (Hindu), and Kyoto (Buddhism and Shintoism). Retails for $95.
I sampled a number of the Commes des Garcons fragrances at Soap + Water and what really struck me is that they seem to be the “anti-perfume” perfume. That is, with notes incense, chamomile, vanilla, patchouli, rosewood and ambrette, there’s a palpable natural scent identified with each; they are not overpowering.
Packaging is everything, and these delights come in sleek, architecturally interesting bottles which almost pass for petite pieces of art. Sample the scents at Soap + Water Newport at 16 Bowen’s Wharf soon. Don’t live near by? Soap + Water is now a part of the Shoptiques community, which means you can be sitting in Greenpoint or Greenland and still enjoy the authentic shopping experience at this great shop. Here’s you’re boarding pass: http://www.shoptiques.com/boutiques/Soap-Water-Newport
Comme des Garcons at Soap + Water
This post was sponsored by Soap + Water Newport. As always, opinions expressed are my own.
What’s All the Racquet? Fila, Packer Shoes & the International Tennis Hall of Fame Release Limited Edition Sneakers
The International Tennis Hall of Fame (ITHF), Packer Shoes and FILA have collaborated on two limited-edition sneaker styles set to debut this week during the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships. This is the first lifestyle footwear collaboration for the ITHF and partnering with Packer Shoes, which first began in 1907 in Yonkers, NY, and FILA, which has a rich heritage in tennis and role as a trendsetter in sneaker culture, is a natural fit.
The limited edition sneaker collaboration features two FILA Classic Tennis models. The T-1 Mid was designed with an all over Sycamore green suede upper, while the Original Tennis shoe features an off-white suede upper and Sycamore/FILA Red tumbled leather flag (very Gucci-esque!). Both feature a gum bottom and terry lining with a special International Tennis Hall of Fame footbed, a Packer embroidered detail back collar and comes wrapped in custom packaging.
The ITHF will premiere the footwear during the Hall of Fame Tennis Championships this week. The shoes will be at Packer retail location in Teaneck, NJ (a must-visit for sneaker junkies) and online, beginning on July 18. The T1-Mid and Original Tennis pairs will retail for $110. A portion of the proceeds of sales of the shoe will be donated to junior tennis programs at the International Tennis Hall of Fame.
The shoes will also be front and center on the runway this Thursday at the Alex and Ani Ladies Day Runway Show and Champagne Brunch featuring styles from Brooks Brothers and FILA. The runway show will unfold on the Horseshoe Court with brunch on the piazza and wine from Carolyn’s Sakonnet Vineyards from 9-11am. At the event, you’ll also see a new clothing collaboration by FILA and the ITHF. Tickets still available, CLICK HERE for details.