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Lipstick & Brunch Beauty Soiree @ Look Boutique
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“Over the Top” Art Institute Senior Fashion Show
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Eado Vintage- Houston, TX
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Gap x Birchbox Arrives in Houston
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Pilgrimage to the Painted Desert Trading Post
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Villa Wanderlust
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Mopeds and Wanderlust

Lipstick & Brunch Beauty Soiree @ Look Boutique

My friend and blogger pal- Nicole Kestenbaum of Lipstick & Brunch recently held an event at Look Boutique. Now, Look Boutique is not like an average “boutique,” it’s an upscale beauty bar located in the Walgreens off Sage and Westheimer in the Galleria neighborhood in Houston. This particular location is in fact, the ONLY one in Texas. Think of Look Boutique as a hybrid between a higher-end beauty department (like Sephora or Macy’s) and the Walgreens beauty aisle. The boutique features French, UK and cult-favorite skincare and beauty products that you wouldn’t normally find anywhere else.

Their current skincare brands are: Avene, La Roche, Vichy, Lierac, Nuxe, Dr.Hauschka,Bioxidea, Rilastil, Le Couvent des Minimes, Talika and Klorane. Their current cosmetic brands are: Vera Moore, Pür Minerals, Studio Makeup, POP, Vincent Longo, The Balm, Cargo and 100% Pure. They carry OPI, China Glaze and Essie nail polishes. They carry Macbeth cosmetic bags and LUG travel bags. They also carry the quirky Demeter Fragrance Library (with scents such as: ‘Dirt,’ ‘Funeral Home,’ ‘Marshmellow,’ ‘Soap,’ ‘Earthworm,’ ‘Dust’ and ‘Clean Windows’) and Edia cosmetics for Hair.

Upon first glance, this place is pretty amazing and a beauty lover’s dream come true. The fixtures are bright and modern, taking careful consideration to making the space look young and fresh. Nicole was totally in her element! Her face just lit the room as she was discussing her favorite products, such as the ‘Hot Mama’ blushes from The Balm and Klorane’s dry shampoos. I have to admit, I was even overwhelmed…but am anxious to go back with a bigger budget.

There were complimentary skin analysis/consultations and make-up touchups by the Look Boutique cosmetologists. Guests were also able to leave with gifts with a $30 purchase and participate in raffles.

Be sure to “LIKE” Look Boutique on Facebook and Instagram for additional information and their latest happenings.

“Over the Top” Art Institute Senior Fashion Show

The Art Institute of Houston’s senior class showcased their capsule collections during a high energy “Over the Top” fashion event at Proof Rooftop Lounge. The show featured designers: Yoselin Hernandez, Phuong Thao Le, Nhi Nguyen and Cheryl Vick.

Yoselin Hernandez was the only designer who did menswear. She was inspired by contemporary and urban concepts that were mixed with a business-casual vibe. Simple tees with skull prints paired with clean, contemporary blazers and pants created a unique twist to everyday, run-of-the-mill menswear. Check out Yoselin’s INSTAGRAM.

Phuong Thao Le presented her collection- “The Debut of Belle.” Belle is the nickname that her Grandmother gave her when she was born. ‘Belle’ is also French for ‘beautiful’ and her Grandmother wanted her to own the beauty inside and out. Phuong further explains, “I wanted it to present the beauty of the women. The inspiration for this collection was the combination of the tradition and the modern. Because I was born and grew up in Vietnam, the tradition and the culture are always a part of my life. Specially, the traditional dress gave me so much inspired. I think a woman look her best when she’s in that dress. So i took that look and made it in modern way, so everyone can wear it. I wanted to bring out the elegance and the feminineness of the woman.One of the special things about my collection is the fabric. Most of the fabrics that I used are natural fibers such as: silk charmeuse, silk organza, and linen. When I went to LA to search for the fabric, I found them in several stores in fashion district. After that, i sent my fabric to The company in Vietnam to get them pleated. It was a long process and took few weeks to get it done. But at the end, I feel so happy that the fabric came out perfectly the way I wanted to be. The second thing about this collection that I wanted people to know that all the beading work was done by hand because I wanted the embroidery and the beads in just some placements. Some little things bring the uniqueness to my collection.” Bright orange contrasted with neutral gray and white. I thought the pleating was a delightful touch to the Asian-inspired silhouettes. I loved the flared jumpsuit and show-stopping headpiece during the finale.

Nhi Nguyen, also of Vietnamese descent, left home at seventeen and traveled to America to pursue her career in fashion. She recently won 3rd place during the “Fashion My Future 2015″ conference. Nhi Nguyen’s collection was inspired by geometric forms and futuristic elements, which she feels represent the strong and independent image of a woman. She also featured the three garments that were featured in “Fashion My Future 2015.” I loved her use of shapes, lines, cut-outs and structure.

The last designer of the evening was Cheryl Vick, who took a nod to her Nordic roots that leaned toward the Valkyrie. She originally wanted to use red fabric, but since that didn’t work out too well, she opted for the raspberry silk dupioni. Thus her ‘hot pink and black collection’ was born. Nordic turned ‘Glam Rock’ with black leather and vinyl. “I wanted to use a vibrant color as the finale piece and came up with a head to toe hot pink two piece ball gown. The top is fuchsia cow hide and the bottom raspberry silk dupioni. I chose Emileigh Meloy- who is 6’2 to wear the dress. She made the dress come to life on the runway, along with the wind and I felt like it was a perfect end to our show,” Cheryl explained. Her dresses seems to have also taken on a “hidden silhouette” so to speak, as it showed in either the trim or contrasting fabric. Of course, my favorite was definitely the finale dress because apparently I love anything with drama! Stay tuned for the launch for her website.

The students put on a wonderful show and I’m excited to see what they do next! Congratulations (now) graduates!

Eado Vintage- Houston, TX

Eado Vintage
1123B Dumble St.
Houston, TX 77023
PH: (832)277-6570
ETSY
FACEBOOK

East of Downtown (Houston) or “Eado” as it’s referred to, has just gotten a wonderful new addition to the neighborhood- Eado Vintage. The shop is located at the corner of Polk and Dumble Streets. The owner, Jennifer Rowland has always been a fan of fashion and appreciates the better quality that vintage has to offer. She had gone to Houston Community College to do fashion design, but found that it wasn’t going to pay the bills. She met up with a friend one day, who introduced {Jennifer} to the world of Etsy. Jennifer soon realized that having an Etsy and doing local markets was working for her, so she built a small 12′ x 8′ shop behind her house to aid in spreading out her growing inventory. It wasn’t soon after, when she decided to get the space where she is now and delve into being a brick-n-mortar.

Eado Vintage offers a large variety of clothing and accessories options for women, men and children. Jennifer has a great eye for bright and unique pieces, as well as designer (such as: Oscar de la Renta and Zandra Rhodes).

When asked about her aesthetic, she explained, “I worked at HCC fashion collection for a couple of years cataloging and repairs. I have some things from late 1800s to early 1900s, but mostly I have 40s through 80s. The 90s is a trend now but I don’t really consider it vintage. I do have few things 90s just because I came across them. I feel like I shop for a world market so I look for interesting design, unusual fabrics, great construction. May not be something I would wear but I can see somebody wearing it. I love great vintage designer clothing. I really appreciate the quality and craftsmanship of the older clothes. Made to last…”

So not only can you find incredible threads that no one else has, you can also find some cool home decor and fabrics as well. Prices vary, ranging from $5 to $1,250, so there’s something for everyone!

Gap x Birchbox Arrives in Houston

Leading beauty and grooming retailer- Birchbox, has recently teamed up with the classic apparel brand- Gap and launched summer beauty shops within select Gap stores around the country. The eight week experience kicked off June 5th and will run through the end of July at flagship locations in New York City, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles and Houston.

I attended the Gap x Birchbox launch event at Gap in the Houston Galleria. Guests were invited to experience Try Bars- where shoppers could get hands-on experience with hair, makeup, nail, body, fragrance and skincare. There were makeup artists also on hand for guests to get touch-ups. I got my makeup refreshed by local artist- Heather Nixon, who gave me a natural look. Dallas blogger-Courtney Kerr made a special appearance, meeting-and-greeting fans, while sharing her favorites from the collaboration. She looked “All-American Chic,” wearing a chambray denim cami and black high-waisted distressed skinny jeans, all from Gap. Her makeup of the evening included: Cynthia Rowley Lip Stain in “Poppy,” Parlor Sea Salt Spray and Cargo Bronzer.

Courtney shared her other favorites from Birchbox: Laqa & Co. Lipstick, Klorane Dry Shampoo, Whish Shave Crave Shaving Cream and Benefit “They’re Real” Mascara.

Customers can go HERE to find out more information on the Gap x Birchbox collaboration.

Pilgrimage to the Painted Desert Trading Post

(Vintage White Gauze Dress from Refreshed Couture, Vintage Vest-thrifted, Sunglasses from ZeroUV, Vintage Hermes Scarf-thrifted, Vintage Shoes from Top Vintage LLC.)

I opted for a “festival-ish” bohemian look for a quick trip to the Arizona desert. I figured a chic vintage airy dress with a boho vintage vest would be fitting to make a pilgrimage to the “Crown Jewel” of Route 66- The Painted Desert Trading Post. The building is long since been abandoned, but alas on private land. This past weekend provided a rare opportunity for a tour group to travel past the gates, down the now defunct section of the Mother Road and to the hauntingly beautiful building. Huge thanks to Dean Kennedy, Jessica May and another kind gal who took my photo, thus making this post possible.

Villa Wanderlust

Yesterday marked the launched of Villa Wanderlust- a pop up shop that featured a selection of Houston-based designers and boutiques. The event, which took place at Wicowork/Wired International‘s cool Midtown digs, was hosted by Sarrah Zadeh of La Mochi and Joy Kennedy of Priya. The featured brands were: Baanou, BellaJules, Brooke Feather, Elle Milady, Kandu Collections, La Mochi, Priya, Sweet Suri Jewels, Vali Belo Swim and {temple street}. They also featured local artists: Travel Photographer- Atessa Barazandeh, Painter-Tony Paraná and music by Cirque Noir. There was an EXQUISITE food presentation by Maple and Love, Roost and Lillo & Ella. I mean, it was literally one of the best healthy food varieties that I’ve seen at an event. There was also a tea bar by Mar-Tea-Na, where all the ingredients are natural and flavorful. William Grant and Sons provided a bar that offered Hendricks Gin, Milagros Tequila, Oncho Reyz and Solerno Blood Orange Liquor.

Wired International’s sister company- Wicowork “bases its goal achievement by creating dynamic environments, expanding networks and creating a working atmosphere that involves collaboration and sharing ideas. In Wicowork we strive to achieve our costumers goals and expand their businesses; this new movement is reshaping the work industry and transforming society, as we are.” The space, a beautifully renovated baby blue color home located in the heart of Houston’s Midtown district embodies creativity. The inside is inviting and bright, decorated with unique reclaimed and recycled materials (not to mention funky lighting structures). I hope this space gets utilized more in the future.

Takeaways from the event:

* Not only am I OBSESSED with caftans, but the ones at Elle Milady just upped my obsession ten-fold. I learned another fun way to stay the hem and to be daring when choosing a slip or whatnot to pair with the sheer ones. The owners- Nancy and Suzanne were extremely friendly and welcoming. Their dear Mother, who is an avid textile collector, even modeled a couple of the styles while I was there. The caftans and their billowy jumpsuit counterparts are made in the USA.

* La Mochi handbags are just lovely wisps of colorful, handcrafted goodness that come in forms of beaded necklaces and woven handbags. The fair-trade company was founded in 2013 by Sarrah Zadeh with a mission of collaborating with artisans and communities from all over the world. Some of the handbags I’ve seen were handmade in Colombia by women of the Wayuu Tribe.

* Priya jewelry was founded by Joy Kennedy in August 2011. She wanted to fill the need for high quality products while also supporting artisans from all over the world. In 2014, the company launched it’s namesake contemporary jewelry collection. In all, the brand awakens the spirit of the East, while dedicating itself to the structure and quality of the West. I loved Priya’s jewelry presentation, from the elegant necklaces to the druzy to the vintage Indian rings.

* The Brooke Feather gals were on hand, showing off a smidgen of what they offer at their River Oaks location. I loved some of their pieces (such as their sandals and a caftan by LemLem), which conveyed a relaxed, West Coast vibe.

* Layla Asgari of Sweet Suri Jewels was selling her best-selling rings, necklaces and bracelets to discerning clientele.

* BellaJules was founded by Marwah and John Fawcett, who love to travel and entertain. They formed this brand because they wanted to share their favorite entertaining items from near and far with their clients. We’re talking Brazilian agate coasters, recycled copper platters and mugs, rustic wood cutting boards and best of all- handmade wine soaps.

* Kandu Collections offers a variety of handbags and accessories in stylish leather and exotic skins. My favorite bags were the bucket bags by Alexandra De Curtis.

* {temple street} was founded in Fall 2011 by Ana Mae Holmes, who expresses her love of culture, travel and fashion into each handmade piece. She offered a stash of trendy druzy jewelry, along with other sweet contemporary pieces.

* Vali Belo Swim displayed several of their Latin-inspired posh beach and pool cover-ups and swimwear. I rather loved the “Blue Haven” bikini set and the “Silk Wind Palm Kimono.”

* The Baanou folks were in the house, selling their exclusive collection of designer apparel and accessories.

10% of the sales went to support The Priya Foundation and Renacer Colombia.

Mopeds and Wanderlust

Yesterday was the inaugural Villa Wanderlust event in Midtown (Houston). It was of course humid and in the 90s. I decided to finally wear my vintage floral halter jumpsuit from Top Vintage LLC. Despite it being polyester, which is known to be HELL in the heat, was actually fine (although maybe it was because this was a skin-bearing halter…). I also paired it with my white clutch from California-based Leoluca handbags and vintage, thrifted burnt brown woven slingback sandals. My blogger pal Shasie and I took advantage of the beautiful weather and the overall outside decor of the event’s venue- Wired International and were able to get some photos with clever backdrops, including a vintage moped!

** Photos by Live Life in Style **

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