Archive for February, 2011

Perfectly Kissable Lips and Last Minute Gifts

Wanna show your sassier side this Valentine’s Day? Start with bold red lips! Red can be tricky, so I suggest popping by Cosmic Cosmos on Thames Street or The Apothecary on Broadway so you can sample a few before finding the perfect hue. Plus, the staffs at both locales can point you in the right direction and show you some application tricks of trade—essential for the perfect red. Jenni at The Apothecary loves Julie Hewett’s Femme Noir, a shade she says complements all skin types. It’s made with healing camellia oil and essence of rose bud and is $22.50.

Polish off your look with Come to Bed Red nail color by Butter London at ArchBeauty on Memorial Boulevard. Declared “the sexiest red in history,” Butter London, is known for their natural nail care approach. The shade is one of ArchBeauty’s and the brand’s best sellers at just $14.50.

Set the mood with a bottle of the always beautiful Cuvée Rosé Laurent-Perrier, a rosé champagne that makes a perfect apéritif or lovely pairing with dinner or dessert. The signature pink label and packaging makes for a much-loved Valentine. A few days ago I spotted Cuvée Rosé Laurent-Perrier on sale at Bellevue Wine & Spirits for $79.99 (regularly $89.99).

For him: what Newporter doesn’t love a Vineyard Vines tie? Island Outfitters has a ton with red and pink base colors with fish themes (include their signature whale), barefoot prints, crabs, flags, boats and more. The best part? It’s Newport, and the ties promise to be fashionable all year long. $75 (shown Red Sox tie may no longer be in stock)

For someone you want to make smile (including yourself), visit Pleasant Surprise (and their sister shops, P.S. II and P. S. III) in Brick Market Place where there’s an endless array of funky finds, cynical gifts and great gag goods.

Say it with frosting by picking up some last minute cupcakes at Mad Hatter Bakery on Broadway or It’s My Party on William Street. Here’s a tip: get there earlier rather than later so other last minute shoppers don’t gobble up all the goods before you get there! Also, Custom House Coffee at Portmouth’s Clock Tower Square had delectable chocolate covered strawberries and Red Velvet Cake in their dessert case last I was there, and in Middletown, check out Cappuccinos to bring your sweetheart a sugary surprise!

Cosmic Cosmos, 387 Thames Street, Newport, 842-0666

The Apothecary, 6 Broadway, Newport, 324-6253

ArchBeauty Skin Care Salon & Boutique, 18 Memorial Blvd., Newport, 619-5885

Bellevue Wine & Spirits, 181 Bellevue Ave. in Bellevue Gardens, Newport, 846-7993

Pleasant Surprise, 121 Swinburne Row in brick Market Place, Newport, 846-1202

Mad Hatter Bakery, 64 Broadway Newport, 847-0354

It’s My Party Bake Shoppe, 84 William Street, Newport, 619-4600

Custom House Coffee, 600 Clock Tower Square, Portsmouth, 682-2600

Cappuccinos, 876 West Main Road, Middletown, 846-7145


February 14, 2011 at 11:11 am 1 comment

Etcetera Spring Collection Pop-Up in Newport Through Tuesday










From now through Tuesday, the Etcetera Clothing Spring Collection Trunk Show is being presented at 78 Thames Street by Mary Haite, a name Newporters will recognize as the former proprietress of American Beauty on Memorial Boulevard. Etcetera is known as a contemporary women’s fashion line that is directly sold to clients. Typically marketed to professional women, women with a demanding social calendar and the woman on the go, I knew the line had some great pieces, but generally speaking, I had a preconceived notion that Etcetera has a more conservative appeal (after all, their pieces are often spotted on news anchors, hosts, PR executives on talk shows and more). That hunch went right out the window when I saw the cheetah print coat, one shoulder tops and exposed zipper detailing. “The spring collection is beautifully detailed with a nod to ‘Mad Men’ dressing,” is how Haite describes it. “Fresh, witty feminine style with sexy iconic sheaths, nautical seaside classics, bo ld and beautiful color paired with lots of white, and lush vibrant prints.” Haite says the Etcetera woman is 20+, loves fashion and has a need for chic, standout clothing.

There are some great dresses and lovely separates that when paired together give the illusion of a dress, but for more casual duds, the line has provides “color capsules,” which is similar to when ladies fashion magazines show how you can turn 7 different pieces for 14 distinct looks. The price p oint is relatively high ($100+), but not more than what you would fine for better clothing in Newport’s boutiques, plus, the quality is there, with most pieces including a lining, detailed tailoring and support and structure. “The collection is consistently flattering and glamorous,” says Haite, and worth seeing.

The pop up shop is stocked with samples through Tuesday Feb 16th. Appointments suggested (especially if you’re looking for a late evening time) but walk-ins are welcome too. Call 256-2594/662-2420 or email for an appointment or if you have questions. Visit to see more.

February 13, 2011 at 2:16 pm Leave a comment

Getting Gorgeous for Cupid’s Arrow

You don’t need Valentine’s Day as an excuse to pamper yourself with sparkling stones, just right jeans and a mini-makeover that will put a little swagger in your step. Why not spend this sunny Saturday (it’s going to be 40° — pratically balmy!) indulging in some girly fun?

Laura Jean Denim is hosting a trunk show this afternoon from 12-4 p.m. by Newport jewelry designer Jessica Hagen featuring necklaces and earrings made from semi-precious gemstones, crystal, leather and sterling sliver. (Make it a point to chec out her studio, Jessica Hagen Fine Art + Design in Newport sometime). Check out Laura Jean’s newest arrivals and sale section while you shop. Meanwhile, The Apothecary on Broadway opens its doors today for their Valentines Day Event where ladies can get glammed up for your sweetheart or a night on the town with your girlfriends. Enjoy complimentary mini-makeovers, $10 brow shaping, and 15% off all bareMinerals products while savoring wine and hors d’oeuvres from 1-5 p.m.

In Portsmouth, Deborah Winthrop Lingerie is celebrating Shop, Shop and Tarot! with mimosas and munchies. Stop by and get a bra fitting, check out the lovely lingerie (like the great selection of Hanky Panky) and shop for jewelry by Kol Naylor, a collection described as “a colorful combination of earrings, bracelets, pendants, toggles and chain work.” There’s also silver jewelry by Kathy Brughelli’s Eamon Ellery collection…the event is from 1-5 p.m. at Deborah Winthop at Clock Tower Square.

Laura Jean Denim, 198 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, (401) 849-5326

Jessica Hagen Fine Art + Design, 226 Bellevue Avenue, Newport, 849-3271

The Apothecary, 6 Broadway, Newport, 324-6253

Deborah Winthrop Lingerie, 103 Clock Tower Square, Portsmouth, 682-2272


February 12, 2011 at 11:46 am Leave a comment

One on One with Project Runway Winner and Rhode Island-Bound Seth Aaron Henderson

Fans of Project Runway watched designer Seth Aaron Henderson, a punk-rock-meets-glam-meets-goth garment guru, sew up top honors during Season 7 of the immensely popular reality TV competition in The Battle for Bryant Park. As New York Fashion Week kick off in the Big Apple tomorrow, Henderson has his sights set Lil’ Rhody, as he’ll join Season 8 runner-up Mondo Guerra for an insider’s look behind the scenes of Project Runway at the University of Rhode Island on Wednesday, February 16 (8-11 p.m., ticket information below).

I chatted with the delightfully candid Seth Aaron from his Portland, Oregon, studio in advance of his URI appearance, and it seems the future is nothing but bright for the burgeoning designer.

Reflecting on your Project Runway experience, do you feel the show accurately depicted who you are, and how has post-Project Runway life been?

It was totally real. It was a lot of work, a lot of stress, and you do that 7 days a week, on like 3 or 4 hours sleep. Not everyone can operate on just that little amount of sleep, and people can start to get cranky but it was all real. … I get emails from all over the world—France, Germany, China, Japan—every single country, and it’s really cool. I do get recognized, and I look at is as my job. I signed up for it. You can’t runway and hide, that’s why I love these events (URI). I love meeting like 2000 new people…I’d rather be with them then like 50 in a room I already know. I like randomness, I don’t like staging or scripting. I’ll do an interview on TV or something and they’ll be like, ‘Here’s the questions,’ before and I’m like, ‘I don’t want to know!’

Some of the challenges seem limiting, especially when you have to stay within set parameters that can require using specific materials. Do you feel you were able to stay true to your aesthetic? (click MORE to read after the jump) (more…)

February 9, 2011 at 11:35 am 1 comment

Restaurants Redeux

It’s true; Brick Alley Pub is closed…for a whole week. I know; for a lot of people, a week without BAP’s burgers, stellar salad bar and super service is hard to fathom. Never fear, the iconic Thames Street eatery will be back in service, post-face lift, by this weekend (Feb. 12th). In the meantime, it’s time to get your cedar-plank salmon, bamboo basket, and pad Thai on before Salvation Café goes on a 6-week hiatus for renovations. In years past, the eclectic Broadway hot spot has closed for mid-winter spruce up for a short respite—never quite this long. I stopped by Friday night (when it was jumping!) and got the skinny–it seems some minor construction is in the works in addition to some design changes, so I can’t wait to see what Salvation brings. Right now the Café is serving a special Snow Days Menu featuring Marseilles Bouillabaisse, a spicy tomato lobster broth with mussels, shrimp, salmon and garlic croutons, plus a handful of specialty cocktails (has anyone tried their Nor’Easter: Old Crow Bourbon with ginger beer, lime juice and maple syrup??) CLICK HERE for a preview on their special 4-course Valentine’s Day dinner menu before their close the doors through the end of March, and don’t forget your jug of Salvation’s signature sangria.

Brick Alley Pub, 140 Thames Street, Newport, 849-6334,

Salvation Cafe, 40 Broadway Newport, 847-2620,

February 7, 2011 at 11:34 am 1 comment

Deals & Steals: Ice, Ice Baby Edition

Despite the frozen tundra that is Newport County right now, huge sales can be found all over. The fashionable fivesome at Clock Tower SquareThe Pink Pineapple, Stalise, The Groovy Gator and Deborah Winthrop Fine Lingerie, and Lou Lou’s Décor—all have great markdowns. Stalise has 20% off marked down winter pieces, and you can couch surf Pink Pineapple sales online by clicking here. Lover’s take note: Deborah Winthrop has a cool selection of hot hot hot underthings for Valentine’s Day!

In Newport, retailers are pushing winter fashion out the door (and we still have at least 8 more weeks of chilly temps) for pennies. Michael Hayes on Bellevue Avenue and on Bowen’s Wharf has women’s clothing an ADDITIONAL 20% off already marked down winter duds (50-75% off already), and the upstairs men’s boutique has suits, sport shirts, jackets, outerwear and more for 30-75% off. Michael Hayes for Kids on Bellevue is taking a cue and offering the same additional 20% off clearance. Karol Richardson’s  annual Warehouse Sale is happening now through Sunday (10 a.m. – 6 p.m.) with designer duds 50-90% off (including $10 bargain bins). Pictured here, Catimini kids dress and ensemble, one of the many lines at Michael Hayes Kids.

Angela Moore on Bellevue Avenue has 80% off selected styles, and a few shops down, J. McLaughlin has a 70% off and more section–plus, both shops have their new resort collections in, so if you’re jetting off on a mid-wonter respite, you’ll want to pop into both. Downon Lower Thames, Erica Zap on hosting a 40% sale on winter items, but they may close by 4 p.m. today in advance of the Super Bowl!

Beauty bargains include Ki-Ra Salon’s Pay it Forward sale because it comes to a close on Feb. 12. At The Apothecary, buy $100 worth of any Tocca product you’ll receive a complimentary Tocca moisturizing bodywash that can double as a luxurious bubble bath. Jenni and the girls are also gearing up for next Saturday’s Valentine’s Day Event—more on that this week!

ArchBeauty on Memorial Boulevard has a great February Refresh Deal—the beauty team paired with Julie Basil Pierce Massage Studio on Bellevue and Newport Pilates for this winter package: Receive a one hour enzyme facial with Sara (ArchBeauty), one hour exfoliating/hydrating massage (at Julie’s massage studio), a one hour Reiki & Reflexology treatment with Reiki Master Julia, and a one hour one-on-one private session with Newport Pilates, all packaged at $200.

February 5, 2011 at 2:04 pm 1 comment

Why, yes! Those ARE Baby Blue Patent Leather Manolos….

I realized when I stopped by Karma this weekend, the cozy consignment boutique on Newport’s Washington Square, that the shop is functionally the fantasy closet so many fashionistas dream of. Prada, Dior, Fendi, Nina Ricci, Kate Spade, Nicole Miller, Carmen Marc Valvo, Chanel—they’re all here, neatly hung, clearly displayed or perfectly laid out. Rows of shoes line the shelves, fabulous handbags call your name and endless accessories make playing “dress up” all the more tempting. With an eye for high end fashion and vintage treasures, owners (and twins) Judy and Joy Catuogno have stocked the shop with upscale designer duds at a fraction of the usual cost–but it’s more than that. The stunning red vintage Christian Dior wool military coat is just as chic today as it was when it made its debut more than two decades ago. From a sequin Nicole Miller sassy shirt dress to a woolen knit, long-sleeve Tibi dress, a vintage Oleg Cassini-like pink dupioni silk dress (much like a few Jackie O once wore; the former First Lady favored both Cassini’s couture and ready-to-wear collections) from a private estate collection, to a tailored silk kimono-style knee length dress, there’s a range to fit each diverse taste. Plus the shoes (oh, the shoes!), the amazing accessories like classic opera gloves and chunky pendant necklaces …. and there’s coffee and scones across the street? Like I said, fantasy closet…

Karma, 13 Touro Street, Newport, 846-0940, (site under construction! We’ll let you know when it’s up and running~)

February 3, 2011 at 10:57 am 6 comments

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