Archive for June, 2010

Soirées, Safari, and Sipping Champagne by the Sea

With every indication of a gorgeous Newport weekend ahead, we thought we’d provide a trio of fun, fantastic events that everyone can attend here in the City-by-the-Sea.

Habitat for Humanity Seaside Soirée: Sip sophisticated cocktails, feast on savory hors d’oeuvres, and dance the night away surrounded by luxury yachts while taking in panoramic views of Newport Harbor, all to benefit Habitat for Humanity of East Bay’s build on McAlister Street in Newport. Just as the sun begins to set, Regatta Place heats up with live music by Chelly, Bill & Dyl, an amazing silent auction, and a spirited night for all. Just a sample of the cuisine: lobster tacos by The Pier, scallop ceviche by the Marine Café & Pub, calzones by Aquidneck Meat Market, and more from Kellie’s Café, Bristol Bakery, Neco Food, The Newport Experience and desserts by It’s My Party, Mad Hatter and Scrumptions. The party will be in full swing from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. $75 per ticket, all inclusive (open bar, etc.) CLICK HERE FOR TICKETS

The Newport Flower Show: The Newport Flower Show celebrates its 15th year as on of the country’s premier summer flower show with an African theme. Safari-Flora and Fauna will capture the imagination with the exotic treasures of a continent that boasts the most diverse range of plants and animals in the world. The show kicks off with an opening night party tonight (members $125/non-members $150). Party from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. The flower show continues Saturday and Sunday. For additional ticket information, CLICK HERE.

Think PINK for a Change: This annual fundraiser at Newport’s dashing Beacon Rock estate benefits The ALLY Foundation,whose mission is to prevent opportunities for violent sex offenses, to educate the public and advocate for necessary changes in culture, attitude and policy. The foundation was established in honor of Alexandra Zapp, who was murdered by a repeat sex offender in July 2002. Today, friends, family and supporters gather at this elegant affair, which includes cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, live music, an auction and spirited revelry raises funds for the important work the foundation does. Tickets: $125. To learn more about this inspirational Boston-based foundation and buy tickets, CLICK HERE.

June 25, 2010 at 11:57 am 2 comments

Shop In Series: Jamestown

Some say Jamestown is everything Newport is not, and that’s just the way the locals like it. The westernmost municipality of Newport County, Jamestown, completely encompassing the nine miles long by one mile wide Conanicut Island, is a close, year-round community that hosts an influx of summer residents and visitors. A (relatively) sleepy coastal village with everything from historical neighborhoods to newly-built sprawling estates, Jamestown celebrates its oldest traditions with working farms and preserved pastoral expanses. Its commercial center, which includes East Ferry Wharf, Narragansett and Conanicus avenues, includes cozy café (find a few below for a refreshing shopping respite), a handful of unique shops and utilitarian retailers for homeowners and sailors alike. (Don’t forget to hop the Newport-Jamestown Ferry in-season for a quick cruise across Narragansett Bay…)

Benjamin Thomas Gallery, 2 E Ferry Wharf: Here you’ll find nautical-influenced commercial and fine art photography, as well as fine art printing, just steps from the bay.

Cathryn Jamieson Salon, 16 Narragansett Avenue: Mani/pedi anyone? This full-service salon Aveda concept salon offers the gamut of spa services in addition to massage, Reiki, acupuncture and other therapeutic services.

Clancy Designs, 382 North Road: It’s worth veering slightly off the beaten path to check out this shop to check out the handblown glass tableware and unique, colorful sculptures by local artists David and Jennifer Clancy.

Conanicut Marine Services, 20 Narragansett Avenue: Right, so Conanicut Marine is best known as a marina/boatyard/yacht brokerage and operators of the Jamestown-Newport Ferry, but the Narragansett Ave. location is a huge chandlery with outerwear, footwear, sailing duds and equipment and so much more from names like North Face, Henri Lloyd, Keen footwear (by Jamestown’s own Martin Keen), Sperry, and Smith – definitely worth checking out.

Grapes and Gourmet, 9 E Ferry Wharf: Looking to pick up that bottle of fine wine, artisan cheese and specialty snacks for a sunset picnic at Beavertail State Park? Grapes and Gourmet has a nice selection of both, especially for a small shop. PS: Free wine and cheese  tastings every Saturday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Jamestown Designs, 17 Narragansett Avenue: With just about everything inside its walls inspired by the sea (jewelry, gifts, prints, fine art) this shop features the work of many local artisans including one of my favs, Shirley Bell. Pottery and platters by Donna Toohey, bags by Vera Bradley and a selection of children’s toys and books is just a hint of everything right about this shop.

Jamestown Hardware, 5 Narragansett Avenue: Why include a hardware store you ask? Um, because this one is awesome. With just about any and every hard-to-find thingamajig you’re looking for, plus seasonal necessities like skim and boogie boards, beach chairs, barbecues, and everything sold with an old-fashioned, great customer service approach, this shop seems somewhat like the heart of Jamestown.

The Purple Door, 47 Conanicus Avenue: More than just a full service bead shop with beads from around the world, The Purple Door has a diverse selection of designer jewelry in addition to offering classes, workshops and private parties.

Spinnaker’s Café, 3 E Ferry Wharf: Located next to the marina and East Ferry beaches, the café serves a full deli menu, but is best known for their ice cream. This time of year, Spinnaker’s is easy to pin-point by the lines of excited children and the young at heart placing their orders at the outdoor counter.

PS: Don’t forget fab eateries like The Bay Voyage, Chopmist Charlie’s, the Jamestown Oyster Bar, Trattoria Simpatico, Tricia’s Tropi Grille and The Village Hearth!

PPS: If you have a favorite Jamestown spot we didn’t mention, let us know at

All photos courtesy of Jim Sattell

June 24, 2010 at 10:44 am Leave a comment


Where others may see worn t-shirts, old buttons and scraps of useless fabric, Middletown native Sarah Quick sees inspiration. “I’ve always been crafty and putting together little things,” says the self-described “up-cycler.” As her crafting developed, a line was born. Today, Modern Shades of Grey boasts extraordinarily-fashioned handmade bracelets, necklaces, scarves, hair accessories and more all made from diverse and sometimes unorthodox fabrics and accoutrements. Her signature multi-strand necklaces, made of 100% cotton cords, usually made out of re-purposed t-shirts in everything from vibrant hues to muted shades, are striking and unique, garnering the artist a lot of attention. She sources textiles and accessories for her pieces everywhere from local tag sales to thrift shops to the recycling center in Providence, ensuring each piece is one-of-a-kind. “I came up with the name ‘Modern Shades of Grey,’ because although we design chic, stylish accessories for the modern fashionista, there are shades of grey because many of our items incorporate vintage materials as well, such as fabrics, zippers, buttons, etc.,” explains Sarah. When not working on commissioned pieces, Sarah’s Modern Shades of Grey can be found at Green Envy Eco-Boutique in Newport’s Brick Market Place, Rummage in Tiverton Four Corners, The Gift Emporium at URI Kingston Campus, Peafunk Designs in East Greenwich, River’s Edge in Pawtuxet Village, Oak on Boston’s fashionable Newbury Street  and at the Indie Arts Festival in Providence in July 31st and online at on Modern Shades of Grey’s Esty site.

June 23, 2010 at 10:11 am 1 comment

Lilly Garden Party on Regatta Eve

Is anything more “summer in Newport” than Lilly Pulitzer, cocktails on the veranda of a fabulous, historic property and conversation surrounding the upcoming Newport-Bermuda Race? Tonight, this trifecta comes together at Peter de Savary’s Vanderbilt Hall for a Lilly Garden Party from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. featuring Lilly Pink Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres from Vanderbilt’s own Monty’s Bar.

Your $20 ticket also buys you a raffle ticket with the winner spending the night in a luxury suite at Vanderbilt Hall and proceeds benefit the Sail Newport Public Sailing Center. Attendees will enjoy a fashionable silent auction and will depart with a special gift bag.

RSVP to Jennifer Paolino,, (401) 619-3522

June 17, 2010 at 3:27 pm Leave a comment

Welcome, New Neighbors!

We’ve been fielding emails left and right on who all the new names are in the city, so by popular demand, here’s the skinny…

By beauty maven Sara Schlieff-Ross, an esthetician for more than 15 years, ArchBeauty SkinCare Salon & Boutique has opened on Newport’s Memorial Boulevard, offering a diverse assortment of services including facials and waxing treatments for men and women. Oh, and did we mention the brow bar? Fabulous! Sara will create perfectly-shaped brows that frame your face and she can tint them to complement your skin tone. Find Butter London natural nail polish as well as Alchimie Forever, G.M. Collin, Colorescience and Skinceuticals skin care there in addition to the cutest selection of organic baby clothing by Newport’s own Simply Chickie by Gwen Design, tote bags made from re-purposed spinnakers by locally-owned Leslie, and make-up bags by Australian designer Apple & Bee. ArchBeauty, 18 Memorial Blvd., Newport, 619-5885,

Longtime friends and designers Boo Gemes, Lily Holt and Sequin have set up a pop-up shop at 119 Bellevue Avenue (the former home of Angela Moore who has moved to 190 Bellevue) for a chic collaboration of fashion and style. Boo Gemes is best-known for timeless lifestyle clothing for women from cashmere sweaters to colorful tunics to silk separates. Much-loved Palm Beach shoe designer Lily Holt has brought her bling-tastic collection of sandals and stilettos, all handcrafted in Argentina, to Newport. Joining them are sisters Kim and Linda Renk with their jewelry line, Sequin, a collection that is no stranger to Newport. Through the years, the generous sisters and animal lovers have donated their covetable enamel bracelets to raise money for the Potter League. Kim is a longtime resident of Newport and Jamestown and this time, she brings Sequin (the number one supplier of costume jewelry for Henri Bendel) to Newport in two different capacities. It’s a Sequin two-fer with pieces found at the collaborative shop with Lily and Boo, and another with an all-Sequin shop at 474 Thames Street. The Lower Thames location is Sequin’s second to open this year following the Palm Beach boutique in January (and when not opening new shops, Kim designs jewelry with Badgley Mischka, J. Mendel, Douglas Hannant as well as for Target and Kohl’s). Sequin’s collection is priced from $30-$700. Boo Gemes, Lily Holt, and Sequin, all located at 119 Bellevue Ave., Newport, 619-5713.

Design Newport brings interior design back to this part of Bellevue Avenue as owner Stella Martin has a keen eye for classic pieces. Inside the cozy shop is a collection of great antiques, home accents and the guidance of Stella to help outfit the home. Note: Beautiful pooch/Design Newport mascot, Maxwell , a lovable Airedale, not for sale….Design Newport, 121 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, 802-279-0684,

Phyllis Satin, owner of Twig, has had multiple retail locations of her original shop, WAVE, across Newport until it closed last year. With their flagship store based in New Haven, Connecticut, Satin had almost thrown in the towel on a Newport location, but when Karen Vaughan closed, she saw an opportunity. “Twig, a branch of WAVE,” which opened last month, is one of those shops you take your time in because there’s much to see, fun quotes to read and unique finds around every corner. There’s also a lot of pieces with natural elements in the shop, hence the name, Twig. Satin has dubbed this part of town “NoBe,” for North Bellevue; we’ll see if it sticks… Twig, a branch of WAVE, 146 Bellevue Avenue, 619-1004.

Not exactly a new name in Newport, but fine jeweler Three Golden Apples has opened a second location on Bowen’s Wharf much to the delight of upscale jewelry lovers. They’re located at 39 Bowen’s Wharf, Newport, 846-9931,

We reported on Badgley Mischka’s launch last week and J. McLaughlin’s arrival in May. Oh, and ps: We just got word of another new neighbor moving into Newport any day now…stay tuned….

June 16, 2010 at 3:05 pm 4 comments

Shop in Series! Today’s Feature: Bristol, Rhode Island

We’re excited to announce our new “Shop In Series,” your guide to shopping on Aquidneck Island, Jamestown, Bristol, Barrington and Warren. From seasonal pop-up shops to perennial favorites, this part of Rhode Island is peppered with retail treasures. We’ll be featuring one city or town a week to create a comprehensive guide to shopping these treasured locales of the Ocean State.

Today we start in historic Bristol. Known across the country for their famed Fourth of July Celebration (founded in 1785 and marking its 225th anniversary this July), Bristol is a historic port town with classic New England charm. For more than three centuries, this bustling coastal community has enjoyed a thriving economic climate, albeit in varying facets of industry. Today, shops are found throughout the town, some on busy Thames Street Landing, others on Hope and State streets and still others on the charming side streets throughout the village. Here’s just a snapshot of what you’ll find ….


June 15, 2010 at 1:02 pm 1 comment

Badgley Mischka Makes a Splash in Newport

Mark Badgley and James Mischka in their Bellevue Avenue Shop

While chic new names including Lily Holt, Sequin, Boo Gemes and J. McLaughlin have filled the retail real estate gaps along Bellevue Avenue within the past few weeks, the addition of internationally-acclaimed Badgley Mischka is surely the feather in “the avenue’s” fashionable cap.

Best known for their exquisite couture gowns that grace red carpets around the globe, the lauded design duo of Mark Badgley and James Mischka have had their sights set on Newport for a pop-up concept store for some time. “With Worth Avenue in Palm Beach being torn up, we

Badgley Mischka accessories line the shelves

thought we should look at different locations for the summer, maybe permanence, and Newport was on the top of our list because so many of our customers do come here and we always loved Newport,” says Mischka, referring to the stylish stretch along Palm Beach’s tony Worth Avenue, which is presently undergoing considerable construction. “Newport has always been very inspiring; we’ve gone to the mansions and always pictured our couture gowns fitting in there,” adds Badgley.


June 12, 2010 at 3:32 pm 13 comments

Happy Anniversary, Alex and Ani!

How did the year fly by so fast? We’re toasting the fabulous Alex and Ani on Newport’s Bowen’s Wharf who is celebrating their first year on Newport’s style scene. The much-loved collection by owner, designer and Rhode Island native Carolyn Rafaelian centers around eco-friendly pieces that enlighten the mind and empower the spirit.  The innovative “expandable element” is the cornerstone of Alex and Ani designs. In lieu of a traditional clasp, wire bracelets, rings, expandable chain necklaces and hoop earrings include a sliding mechanism, making each piece adjustable and able to be customized to fit. Even better, the affordable bangles are as stunning as they are diverse which may be why celebs including Taylor Swift, Eva Mendez, Oprah, Courtney Cox, Renee Zellewegger, Cameron Diaz, Gweneth Paltrow, Drew Barrymore and Sandra Bullock have been known to sport them.

Since landing on our shores, Alex and Ani has become a beloved part of the Newport community, contributing to local causes and worthy organizations. In fabulous style, Alex and Ani is sharing this milestone with their customers by offering 10% off the entire store now through Sunday, so there’s no better time to “bangle up.”

Alex and Ani is located at One Bowen’s Wharf in Newport.

June 11, 2010 at 4:22 pm Leave a comment

StyleWeek Providence Showcases Local and National Talent

Much to the delight of Ocean State fashionistas and beyond, the inaugural StyleWeek Providence kicked off this past weekend welcoming seven days of designer shows, installations and après-show soireés hosted at chic venues throughout the capital city. Highlighting the work of 16 designers, StyleWeek is drawing hundreds of buyers, stylists, fashion writers, fellow designers and fans since Sunday’s opening night shows which featured a collection by Karan Sabag paired with shoes by Goka Design as well as Selah D’or by Boston-based David Chum (who grew up in nearby Fall River, Massachusetts). Goka’s Brazilian-born designer, Alessandra Gold, now operates from both her Rhode Island and Miami-based offices and studios, and was known in Newport for a boutique she opened on Thames Street (her shoes are still carried locally at Laura Jean on Bellevue Avenue).  CLICK HERE to see images from Sabag and Chum; photos of collections will be added as StyleWeek continues.  Photos by Susan Duca.

Runway shows thus far have included collections from Providence-based and Queen of Hearts proprietress Karen Beebe (CLICK HERE to see Karen on The Rhode Show), Boston’s own Sam Mendoza, Sarah Prost and MadeMOIselle Boston. Coming up will be collections by RISD-grad Kelly Eident (whose I’m Your Present line has been donned by celebrities such as Katy Perry); Samuel Vartan; David Yoo for

Designer Jonathan Joseph Peters

Andrea Valentini (another RISD alum); luxury menswear by Jeff Lahens; as seen on Lifetime’s Project Runway’s season seven Maya Luz; Boston native Michael De Paulo; Providence-based Jessica Abernethy and for the much-anticipated finale, the “Ingenue” runway show by Woonsocket native Jonathan Joseph Peters, best known for his appearance of the most recent season of Project Runway. Other events throughout the week include an outdoor concert at Hotel Providence with jazz darlings Sit Down Baby! on June 9th at 5:30 p.m., the Waterplace Park Concert Series featuring Fanfarlo on June 11th at 7:30 p.m., and an all-day arts festival running the entire length of Westminster Street on Saturday, June 12th.

Learn more about all the designers at

June 9, 2010 at 8:23 am Leave a comment

Dress for Success Clothing Drive Starts Today!

We are delighted to be hosting a clothing drive for the newly-christened Rhode Island chapter of Dress for Success, a non-profit organization that provides interview suits, confidence boosts, and career development to low-income women in over 75 cities worldwide. Dress for Success is instrumental in aiding women in need re-enter the workforce, and our local chapter is looking for spring/summer professional clothing, most especially in sizes 0-6 or 14 and above, in addition to accessories, jewelry, handbags, new pantyhose and new make-up.

We’d be grateful for your participation! You can bring your donation to the Newport and Bristol County Convention and Visitor’s Bureau offices (second floor) at 23 America’s Cup Avenue in Newport TODAY through Friday, June 11th OR, you can bring them to the CVB June Marketing Meeting on Wednesday, June 9th at 11 a.m. at Dewolf Tavern in Bristol. (Complimentary transportation will be offered courtesy of Viking Tours of Newport. The shuttle will leave the Newport Visitors Center promptly at 10 a.m. Space is limited; RSVP to DeWolf Tavern is located at 259 Thames Street in Bristol.

Thank you!

PS: Any questions can be directed to

June 7, 2010 at 10:49 am 1 comment

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Embracing the lifestyle–the look, the flavor, the style–of Newport, Rhode Island!

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