The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati

Fashion

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With record low temperatures, a local lady launches her annual Clothes Drive across Cincinnati and needs more help than ever. Read on for more.

 

Cincinnati’s brutally cold winter weather makes it tough just to walk out the door, let alone live in these conditions. That’s what inspired Liz Wu to launch the #Kindflash City-Wide Clothes Drive four years ago.

According to Wu, the annual #Kindflash Citywide Clothes Drive demonstrates kindness and how people can get involved and make a difference. It’s a weekend long event and this year, from Jan. 19-21, where as many donors and volunteers as possible distribute warm clothing such as hats, gloves, scarves, and socks across the city.

“I thought it would be the least I could do to gather a few friends and put out some warm clothing items,” Wu says. “I created a Facebook event and invited a dozen or so people to join in.”

Quickly, Wu’s small gesture turned into something grand. In fact, in the first year, Wu says, there were 20 drop-off sites organized around the area, within 35 Greater Cincinnati neighborhoods.

Each year, the #Kindflash Clothes Drive has grown and Wu is preparing to reach 60 neighborhoods, with 40 items each, totaling around 2,400 items distributed. Wu and her team are expecting at least 100 volunteers who will help throughout the weekend.

“A big part of this project is in bringing visibility to the plight of vulnerable populations, especially during the winter,” Wu says. “Connecting the items with people who need them is an important part of the project, but raising awareness of these issues, and also demonstrating how simple it can be to take direct action (however small) is also our intention.”

Wu says there are two ways to get involved in the #KindFlash Clothes Drive: volunteering your materials or with your time.

For item donations, Wu says they’re looking for anything warm, and they’re accepting items until Jan. 18 at 5 p.m. For more information visit #Kindflash City-wide Clothes Drive on Facebook.

If interested in donating your time, sign up as a volunteer to distribute the items. #Kindflash is looking for volunteers Jan 19-21 to help bag items and pass them out. If interested, click here.

 

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A local fashionista with a passion for travel and food launched a blog that showcases not only her own individual adventures but Cincinnati's exciting growth. Read on to learn more.

Writing has always been a creative outlet for Virginia Blair. “It encourage everyone to keep a journal, even if it’s just to jot down a few ideas each night,” she says. “Life is interesting. Your life is yours, it’s beautiful, make sure to document it.”

Blair took her own advice when it comes to writing and launched her very own blog: VB in the City. 

It started as Tumblr blog nearly 6 years ago, where she documented her interests but grew to become VB in the City as the city of Cincinnati continued to grow and she explored more of what it has to offer.

She started her blog the year after she graduated college, when she moved back to the United States as a way to funnel her creative energy. “To me, art is life,” she says. “As a writer, art dealer, and art appraiser, I see art everywhere.”

Blair especially sees the art in her topics that she writes about, including the Clifton Gaslight district, Mt. Storm Park, Wyoming, where she lived abroad, and now the downtown Cincinnati area. 

Not only does she write about her everyday experiences, she also includes posts about food, which she also sees as an expression of art.

“My palate was sparked with spices at a very young age thankfully, so when living in France and Italy and traveling beyond while finishing up college, I had the ability to not fear trying anything,” she says. “Writing about food during my travels near and far seemed second nature to me. Now living downtown for 5 years, I continue to write about amazing eats, watching this local culinary evolution grow and continue to grow.”

Blair is also passionate about fashion, and reflects that in her blog. She says that her love affair with fashion started with a dress from France that she fell in love with at the age of 5. This passion for fashion translates into many posts about local boutiques on VB in the City.

“The wonderful thing about fashion is you can jump from decade to decade, choosing what outfit suits what mood. Why wouldn’t you want to be in a killer outfit considering your life is the greatest feature film, so dress like the lead,” she says.

Travel is also a big part of Blair’s life and is a topic frequently covered on the blog. “I love different languages and obviously food, style, and remember one of my first dishes I created besides Indian cuisine being Russian and French,” she says. “Life is short and finding time to see beyond ones comfort zone is when I feel people really truly start living. Travel has taught me just that, to adventure a bit harder, to breathe a little slower, and open my eyes a little wider.”

Blair says there isn’t one particular blog post that has been her favorite, but she does enjoy reflecting on her travel posts. “With our lifestyle being fast paced, it’s nice to look back and embrace the beauty of the world, appreciate it, and slow down a bit.”

Through the New Year, Blair says that she hopes to continue to see growth in her blog. “I want to continue to embrace the topics I cover and am currently working on a cookbook as an extension of the blog, and hope to write more after my first cookbook is finished,” she says. “I would also like to see the blog expand with an online shop.”

To check out VB in the City, click here. You can also “like” the blog on Facebook and follow along on Instagram.

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We chat with this Cicinnati-based entrepreneur about her online boutique and her #InHerShoes initiative to connect and inspire other female entrepreneurs.

 
Shanequa Johnson, Founder of Barcode Glam

 

“Get Glam or be bare” has always been the motto for Barcode Glam, an online shoe and accessory boutique founded by entrepreneur Shanequa Johnson in June of 2015.
 
“Barcode Glam is all about your polish,” says Johnson. “Portraying your sense of fashion through your choice of statement shoes & accessories. To step out and make a statement of who you are with your shoes is not only our mission but it is our passion.”
 
Barcode Glam was originally started as a second source of income for Johnson. She is a small business owner as well as an EMR Contractor and Esthetician.
 
“When I started my career as a esthetician in the state of Ohio, I always wanted a esthetics shop but I didn’t have the finances to start that dream,” she explains. “I decided to find a second source of income and I love shoes. So the idea began to open a online shoe boutique and Barcode Glam was created.”
 
Johnson is hoping to move her boutique into a brick and mortar store in 2018. As of right now, she has been resourcing the City of Cincinnati Pop Shop location in College Hill through Dec. 30 of this year, but once she moves out, she will focus on the online business and continue to keep an eye out for the perfect location. 
 
“Barcode Glam is a statement piece kind of boutique. Shopping at Barcode Glam you know you will walk out with a conversation piece item; always bold and hard to find,” Johnson says.
 
Barcode Glam has led Johnson to make lots of connections with other women, entrepreneurs, and opportunities. This inspired her to launch the #InHerShoes initiative to connect other female entrepreneurs.  
“#InHerShoes is a positive blog to feature the daily life of a superwomen,” says Johnson. “In the last two years I have meet, associated and became friends with other female entrepreneurs in the area. I wanted #InHerShoes blog to be a resource for others like us.
 
Johnson hopes to also start her own non-profit organization to build confidence in middle school and high school girls, to give them an outlet for creative expression as well as providing mentorship to become inspiring women. She also has big plans for the future of Barcode Glam, including having a flagship store with her own branded collection of shoes.
 
Johnson prides herself in being organized and having patience; two qualities that have assisted her in making her business so successful. Through #InHerShoes, she enjoys helping other women build their confidence and inspiring future entrepreneurs.
 
“My best advice is budget your business before you do anything, make sure you have a plan for where your money will be disbursed,” she says. “And stay educated in your field. On a monthly basis, I take online classes to keep me up to date of what’s new in the online business field.”
 
To learn more, visit https://barcodeglam.com. 

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Learn about the new Kenwood retailer that'll make your wardrobe -- and the world -- a better place one fashionable, well-made, charity-supporting item at a time.

 

Ramblin’ Ritas started as a mobile boutique and recently opened its doors at Kenwood Towne Center.

Rita Fern was born in March of 1927, with a passion to make the world a better place. Nearly 90 years later, two of her grandchildren have carried that same passion and use fashion to support their grandmother’s vision.

“Rita was our grandmother, who had a heart of gold and left a lasting impression on the life of every person she met,” says co-owner Mary Hauer. “Take her incredible qualities and put them into a business run out of a 1971 Volkswagen van, and you get Ramblin’ Ritas.”

Ramblin’ Ritas started as a mobile boutique in April of 2016, and just moved into their storefront in February 2017. The boutique opened in Kenwood and is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Ramblin’ Ritas also shares the storefront with four other boutiques owned by local women.

“Our tagline has always been ‘Retail for a Reason,'” Hauer explains, “We are striving to make the world a better place, while having fun with fashion!”

The boutique has made it their mission to serve the community and a variety of meaningful charities. Their inventory supports causes related to human trafficking, cleaning the oceans and waterways, and supplying books for children.

“Our goal is to carry merchandise that gives back to a charity or purpose, but not sacrifice style,” Hauer says.

When they first started researching vendors, Hauer and her sister were amazed at how many vendors and people were trying to fulfill the same passion as their grandmother.

“We have a line of bracelets made by women rescued out of human trafficking circles that we are absolutely in love with, and currently we can’t keep our ‘Love Your Melon’ hats and scarves in stock,” says Hauer.

Love Your Melon is a charity that sells hats and scarfs to raise money for pediatric cancer research. Today they have donated approximately $3.8 million to cancer research and to support children and their families.

Ramblin’ Ritas is always looking for new charities or stories that speak to their mission to add to their inventory as well as their own Ramblin’ Rita apparel that supports a number of local causes. “As we continue to grow, we would like to develop some additional local partners and increase our impact here in Cincinnati,” Hauer says.

To learn more, visit Ramblin’ Ritas at 7892 Camargo Road, or follow along on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

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Is it a neutral? Is it a color? Keep watching as our Editor-in-Chic chats with the founder of Styling with Amy about one of winter's hottest color trends: olive!

Amy Scalia with Cincy Chic chats with Amy Elberfeld, founder of Styling with Amy and a personal stylist with NYGARD Direct. To learn more about Styling with Amy, contact Elberfeld at 513-260-2696, amy@stylingwithamy.com or you can visit her website at www.stylingwithamy.com.

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Alexander McQueen, Comme des Garcons, and Givenchy... oh my! Learn about a local fashion studio with rare couture designer pieces that just opened a new store-front downtown.

 

Evolution Fashion Studio recently opened a new location in Carew Tower.

After nearly a decade in Northside, local fashion enthusiast Tony Tiemeyer decided to open a new location for his business, Evolution Fashion Studio, in Carew Tower. The studio has been open for a little over a month now, located in the arcade room at 41 W. 5th St., and it’s open Tuesday-Thursday 11am-3pm. The studio in Northside is also still open as an e-commerce business.

Tiemeyer says the decision to open up at the new location, in the heart of a celebrated Art Deco building, seemed natural after witnessing downtown Cincinnati’s growth and energy from its recent revival.

“I love this building and this space,” says Tiemeyer. “It’s inspiring to be surrounded by these nuanced architectural details. It matches the aesthetic of my collection.”

Tiemeyer first started his fashion career in 1984 starting out with a vintage shop in Clifton. He owned and operated that boutique on Hyde Park Square while also heading up Saks Fifth Avenue’s private shopping program. From there he opened up Evolution Studio in Northside in 2006.

Tiemeyer believes that fashion should be fun. His collection depicts that philosophy; he acquires many of his pieces from museums around the world. The diverse collection features famous designers such as Issey Miyake, Alexander McQueen, Comme des Garcons, and Givenchy.

Tiemeyer worked with Hot Glue, the stylist team Kelsey Wing and Tyler Bellman, and fashion photographer Annette Navarro on the design elements of the studio’s new space. They all previously worked together on Positively Fourth Street: Downtown’s New Look, which was an exhibition of fashion window displays in the former Gidding-Jenny Department store downtown.

The arcade room in Carew tower is the ideal location for Tiemeyer’s studio.

“I like being in the arcade, away from the city’s chaos,” he says. “I like that people have to seek us out. We want to create an experience for visitors unlike anything else in retail. I want them to feel like they’re somewhere out of time.”

In addition to Tiemeyer’s one-of-a kind pieces, Evolution will also be featuring a collection of Iris Van Herpen’s footwear to celebrate the Cincinnati Art Museum’s Iris Van Herpen’s exhibition. This exhibition will be held at the museum until January 7th. The exhibition will highlight the collaborative process linking art, engineering, architecture and science together. This interesting and transformative fashion can also be found in Tiemeyer’s collection.

Tiemeyer hopes this new location will offer customers a new way to interact with his collection as well as attracting new customers and fashion enthusiasts. Evolution Fashion Studio is a private showroom and is appointment only. You can get in contact by email efsstudio@gmail.com or 513.560.1983.

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Dress shopping soon? Make sure you read this helpful guide, as our wedding gown guru explains which silhouettes will flatter your figure.

Wedding gown shopping can be an overwhelming experience. But knowing the basic dress silhouettes for your body type and understanding how they flatter your figure will help you narrow down your endless stream of options when shopping for your bridal gown.

From ball gowns to fit and flare styles, choosing the right dress silhouette can help you emphasize your best body features or deemphasize any problem areas. Here is a comprehensive guide to every bridal dress silhouette you will see when you are on the hunt for your dream wedding gown and which style is best for your body type.

The A-Line gown

The A-line cut is narrow at the top, close to the natural waist, and extends out along the body in the shape of an ‘A’ in a smooth, elongated line. This gown is the most popular style because it is the most universally flattering. Typically, this dress silhouette would be the first one you try on when you are just starting your wedding gown shopping. This way, you will know if you are wanting the classic wedding gown look or if you want to go in a different direction on your wedding day.

The Modified A-line gown

The modified A-line (which is my favorite) is a mix between a mermaid silhouette and a traditional A-line. This shape is roomier in the hips that a classic mermaid, but still a little flared at the bottom so that you can have more movement when you walk. You may want to consider this silhouette if you are looking for more shape than an A-line, but with more movement and mobility of a mermaid or trumpet style. The modified A-line gown looks great on all body types, especially the petite bride who wants the classic style of a ball gown, but doesn’t want all the fullness of the skirt to take away from her beautiful body.

The Ball Gown

Thinking of looking like Cinderella on your wedding day? What bride hasn’t dreamt of this fairy tale look for her wedding? This beautiful, feminine silhouette is most known for its trademark full skirt, fitted bodice and natural waist. This wedding gown is particularly perfect on more boyish figures because it gives the illusion of a more curvy body. It also looks fantastic on pear shape bodies because the fitted bodice really defines the waist while the fuller skirt skims over the hips. The ball gown is also great for tall brides who can pull off the fullness of the skirt. Brides who also are bustier will love this style because it really creates a more balanced proportion with the fuller bottom. Unfortunately, for petite brides who have dreamt of looking like Cinderella need to go with more of the A-line silhouette since the ball gown will truly swallow a petite bride.

Empire Waist

This high waist style hits just below the bustline, while skimming the rest of the body. This gown can de-emphasize the waistline and hips while making the bride look longer and leaner. It can be a perfect solution for a bride who wants to play down the middle part of her body. Empire waist is great for petite brides as well, but not so great for brides who have a larger chest or fuller hips because it can overemphasize those features of the body. Empire waist gowns have not been incredibly popular in the past few years, but are making a resurgence for 2018 because of its easy silhouette and because the brides are going for a more casual, or destination style of gown.

Mermaid

Think of Ariel in “The Little Mermaid.” This gown silhouette truly lives up to its name. This is a gown that really contours to the body, is very curve-hugging that follows the line of your hips and thighs and then flares out below the knee. This silhouette is fantastic for brides who have the perfect hour-glass figure who want to show off their curves. Again . . . this gown is NOT great for petite brides, unless, the designer can do a hollow to hem customization on the gown. It is particularly perfect for the tall bride with curves.

Trumpet or Fit to Flare

This silhouette is often confused with a mermaid silhouette. A trumpet style of gown is more of a straight lined bodice that subtly flares toward the hem, creating a semi-full skirt starting at the knee. This silhouette is one of the most popular amongst brides of all body types who want to show off curves, but don’t want the extreme look of the mermaid gown. The fit to flare gown is also a little easier to move and dance in than the mermaid gown since it has a gradual flare starting at the knee instead of lower like the mermaid silhouette.

 

Sheath

The sheath style gown is a little more casual and care free, but also gives the bride the simple and sophisticated look. This style looks particularly best of petite brides who benefit from the elongated lines and formfitting cut that gently hugs the body from head to toe. The sheath silhouette gives the illusion of height and does not overwhelm a smaller frame the way a full ball gown could.

Dropped Waist

A dropped waist silhouette is perfect for brides who want to flaunt their trim middles and shape because it hugs the waist and hips, but also offers the fullness of the traditional wedding gown in the skirt. This silhouette flares our slightly below the waistline around the hip area giving you the illusion of a longer torso. The dropped waist can be a great alternative for petite brides since it does make the short waist look longer; however, if the skirt is too full, it can still overpower a petite bride. This silhouette is definitely not a good one for brides who have a more boxy figure because it can make the bride look like she does not have any curves at all!

I know this is a lot of information to digest, but it is very imperative to know the gown silhouettes before you start shopping. However, if you have a bridal consultant who knows her gowns, then you will be in great hands. Please always listen to the consultants’ suggestions when she/he pulls gowns for you. Many wedding gowns have no “hanger appeal.” Always try on different styles so you can narrow down your favorite silhouette.

Happy Shopping!

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While we usually share fashion tips and trends on Styling with Amy and Amy, we're offering cleaning tips this week to add more life to each piece. Watch for all the details.

Amy Scalia with Cincy Chic chats with Amy Elberfeld, founder of Styling with Amy and a personal stylist with NYGARD Direct. To learn more about Styling with Amy, contact Elberfeld at 513-260-2696, amy@stylingwithamy.com or you can visit her website at www.stylingwithamy.com.

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Look like a million bucks without spending it when you shop this locally-based online retailer for your holiday parties! Plus, learn about the exclusive discount she's offering to Cincy Chic readers!

The holidays are here and so are the parties! We’ll never pass up an opportunity to get dolled up and look like a fabulous fashionista, but if we get to dress up in items from Miss Em’s we’d love it even more! 

You want to look glamorous, sophisticated, and fashionable without sacrificing comfort or your pocket book when it comes to holiday parties, and with Miss Em’s you can do just that! Her items are super affordable and always stylish! 

As you’re preparing for the parties that are just around the corner (and don’t forget about New Years too!), check out some of our favorite picks from Miss Em’s:

Clear Teardrop Earrings

Burgundy Blanket Scarf

 

Post Pearl Drop Layered Tassel Earrings

Black Braided Beaded Bib Necklace

Silver Filigree Stretch Bracelet

To make it even sweeter, Miss Em’s is offering another sale exclusively for Cincy Chic readers! Use coupon code “Cincychic” at checkout to get 25% off the site! Learn more about Miss Em’s at https://missems.com/, “like” the on Facebook, or follow along on Twitter and Instagram.

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Our friends at Krombholz Jewelers share the top 12 trends of sparkly styles to wear and give this holiday season.

 

Want to wear and give the most stylish trends this year? Our friends at Krombholz Jewelers have the top 12 trends you’ll want to know about. See these beauties in person at their store at 9399 Shelly Ln, Montgomery, OH 45242 or visit www.krombholzjewelers.com to learn more!

 

  1. Stacking necklaces – Diamond station necklaces make the perfect stacking staple. (Ranges from $950-$1875) Whimsical, geometric, and vintage layering pieces can as simple as $80.

 

  1. Stacking bands – Add them to your wedding band set, or dazzle a digit other than your ring finger. Great ongoing gift to add to the stack (pictured: $150+)

 

  1. Earring classics – To add some sparkle to your ear, there’s always the classic staple of simple diamond studs, or even pearl studs. To elevate that look, consider adding a jacket to add lots of drama and even more sparkle. Hoops are the next go-to, and a great everyday alternative. (Studs $400+) (Jackets $995+) (Hoops $1000+)

 

  1. Holiday Sparkle – Opt for the real deal to wow at your holiday party. Textured, filigree in style and vintage inspired are all on trend. These are some of the most dramatic, head-turning earrings you’ll find in store. (Ranges from $3100-6620; filigree diamond drops, custom created by Lee Krombholz)

 

  1. Vintage Holiday – Shop the vintage wonderland at Krombholz. Everything from the original social climbers to bold costume pieces to brighten up your holiday look. And don’t forget to bring in the holiday colors. (Vintage floral climber $2200) (costume rhinestone snowflake earrings $25) (vintage bohemian garnet floral ring $800)

 

  1. Cincinnati Charms – A thoughtful gift is always in style. Give one individually to wear on a necklace or start a charm bracelet. Comes in silver and gold. Also comes in cufflinks and you can mix and match them, like with a coney and a stadium. (Charms starting at $58.75)

 

  1. New Year travel jewelry – Opt for easy travel jewelry that takes you from day to night. Comes in all three metal colors – rose, yellow and white tone but with them being sterling, Swarovski crystals, and CZs, you get the glamor but with the comfort and ease of being able to travel with them. (Range from $100-300)

 

  1. Not your grandma’s pearls – It’s the perfect combination of nature’s treasures. From diamonds embedded into a statement pearl to a seed pearl yellow gold and diamond ring, or diamond rondelles and diamond clasp. There’s also a 32in sterling Tahitian movable station necklace and matching earrings.

 

  1. Blush – This is the trending color of the year and you can achieve it through rose gold, pink pearls, morganite, and lotus garnet. ($2000+)

 

  1. Tassels – Trendy and fun fashion statement of the year. Necklaces are sterling, so that puts it at an affordable price point. (range from $50+)  

 

  1. Stacking bracelets – For this classic trend, you can always add to what you already have for a bold look, or start a new arm party. (sterling plated $85; diamond stretch $2500, hinged bangle $1995, custom starting at $865)

 

  1. Vibrant color – These rare variations of color are perfect for Valentine’s Day. Pink-orange spinel, rose gold, rubilite pink tourmaline, and sapphire with diamonds custom designed and made by Lee Krombholz. ($3975-11,495)