Diva Style

Friday, November 20, 2015

{Scenic Wine Tour}

Last weekend, my fabulous friend Dawn aka our group's "social chair", planned a wine day trip for us. It was really fabulous, and we all had a terrific time. We visited a whisky distillery, a brewery and two wineries. I collected a few snaps of the excursion. 

we began our journey at copper fox distillery

our incredibly knowledgeable tour guide

 finished product

after our initial tasting, we headed over to pen druid brewing
run by a band of brothers...

i started out with the orange rider...a citrus-y southern pale ale
...i have an obsession with fruity brews 

brew and a bag...
our group was nothing if not stylish

a sample of the mellow fellow

brewery nosh -- trout mousse...it was delicious

light show at pen druid...a nice touch


Until we meet again...

Live Glamourously.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

{Bendel Ambassador Soiree}

On November 6, I joined forces with Henri Bendel to kick off the holiday season at a party thrown in my honor. I have become quite a fan of the brand since first discovering them, so when my personal shopper--the MOST AMAZING Bendel associate ever, mind you--suggested they put on a soiree for me, how could I turn it down?!

Replete with a 25% discount on all merchandise my guests purchased, sips and sweets, a gift card and a giveaway of a brand new handbag, I was amped!

 a lovely little invite created by the HB marketing team just for moi

 one of my girls showing off her HB bling

 branded cookies...they were delicious!

i made off with this little beauty for less than $60 
with the assistance of the special promotional offer, 
my gift card and bendel rewards!

west 57th satchel my friend won in the giveaway!

happy holidays from me and HB!


Until we meet again...

Live Glamourously.

Monday, January 26, 2015

{New Additions}

Facts. I'm a handbag whore. You guys know this.
If I see a bag I love, I become enamored, obsessed, jaded...blahblahblah...
Now, I'm not really what you would categorize as a frugal girl, 
but I know how retail works when it comes to markdowns, 
so I often (im)patiently wait for the bags that I lust after to go on sale. 
And well, sometimes bags I didn't know I was in dire need of go on sale. . .
which translates into #firstworldproblems forreal forreal. 
That being said, I have new, new, NEW additions to share with you! 
(And yes, I just hit a shimmy while typing.)

I went into Henri Bendel a few weeks back and walked out with 
the leather and haircalf Rivington Tote. It was already on sale, 
and I got an additional 20% off using a coupon I had received from HB
due to an issue I had back in the fall. Worked for meeeee!! 
It comes in other colors and textures online, 
but I grabbed the last one of these babies in store. 
Lucky me. Overall bag design is divine. It screams richness. 

This one, the Whitney Satchel, is a complete showstopper.
I have gotten so many complements from men on this bag.
The vibrancy of the color is ev-er-y-thing and taken over the top
with the gold hardware and reptile print handles. It also has a
removable cross body strap that can be left on and displayed
stylishly by remaining buttoned underneath the bottom of the handbag.
I purchased this during the HB New Year's sale, and guess what?
Got it using the same 20% off code I used before because
I bought this one online as opposed to in-store.
The associate only asked to see the email containing the code
at the actual atelier and didn't bother keying it in,
so I tried my luck during my little online perusing session.
And voila! It worked. I was quite pleased.

Just a little HB portfolio wallet I picked up on sale for half-off.
It's a perfect mate for another Bendel bag I own, similar to
this, but mine is larger and has been discontinued by the brand.
Meanwhile, remember this post where I was whining about a
rare vintage Gucci bag that I had missed the opportunity to buy?
Well, where there's a will, there's a way. I got the bag!
I was able to negotiate a deal through my vintage seller to purchase
it from his original buyer. Don't sleep. She's serious about her Gucci.
Isn't she a beaut?


Until we meet again...

Live Glamourously.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

{Checking In. . . for the 2-0-1-5!}

Happy New Year, my loves! 
I hope you all experienced the most beautiful of endings to your 
respective 2014s and the most scintillating, delicious beginnings in 2015. 
Both, for me, were stylish to say the very least. 
I dressed to drop jaws in this little number I picked up from NY&CO 
--and had tailored to my specifications--
to ring in what I know is going to be one of the greatest years of my life! 
Shoes are compliments of Guess and worked so perfectly
...found and furnished by accident, but on sale!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

{Vintage Gucci Glamour}

When I die, bury me inside the Gucci sto'!
I love, love, LUUUURVES me some vintage Gucci. I must confess; collecting these pieces is one of my more lavish hobbies. And this year, I found me a supplier. Yes, being addicted to vintage Gucci is a little like being addicted to crack, I would imagine--possibly more expensive. A little leery at first since the purveyor of Gucci goods (@VintageGucciFinds on Instagram) lives in another state, but once I received my first product, I was completely SOLD! He guarantees authenticity, and his pieces are sublime.

He is a connoisseur of all things Gucci--a lover of the brand himself--and learns his clients quickly; he can now tell me exactly what I want. He's the equivalent of a Gucci concierge. I've purchased nothing but mint condition bags from him because he sells nothing but the best! And if the bag isn't already mint, he'll do his best to ensure the restoration embodies it. The proof is in the pudding. See for yourself:
My first purchase from my Gucci guy. . .this bag is older than I am. 
No, really. It's like, 35.

Follow-up purchase. . .monogram top-handle with 
matching kiss locket change purse

My most recent purchase. . .
currently undergoing minor construction. . .
but should be shipping soon!
I can't wait to meet her!
matching kiss locket change purseI can't wait to meet her


he following are bags that I missed out on when

The following bags I missed out on because 
failed to stalk @VintageGucciFinds IG more regularly
I was really hurt over this one!! It's gorgeous!

Then, there was this beautifully kept messenger tote. . .

And alas, the coveted bowling bag. . .
All photos courtesy of @VintageGucciFinds

If you like what you see, click here for the goods.

Do you have an item you like to splurge on?
Tell me about it in the comments!


Until we meet again...

Live Glamourously.

Friday, November 7, 2014

{World Class Woman: Female Empowerment Friday}

This week's World Class Woman is one of the first women I requested the honor of interviewing, my friend, Kisha Johnson. She is a dynamic human being who loves God and seeks to introduce others to Him. She is passionate about and instrumental in her ministry, H.O.P.E. (Helping Others Prepare for Eternity), a non-denominational Christian women's ministry whose purpose is to meet each woman where they are in their spiritual walk, strengthening their relationships with Jesus Christ along the way. They are everyday women who face real challenges, and their passion is to encourage other women throughout the various seasons of life and to serve God through service. Read my interview with Kisha below.
Kisha Johnson

At this point in your life, what do you feel your claim to fame is?

I would say that my claim to fame would have to be my H.O.P.E. ministry.  I was at a point in my life where I truly understood and valued the amazing women that God had placed in my life. I knew how important their guidance, prayers, encouragement, and truth had been for me so I wanted to share it with other women.  

When you were just starting out, who was your first mentor?

When I was starting out my first mentor was Amy Edwards Quaye. Her words are melodies in my soul. Amy's words roll off her lips as if John Coltrane is playing in the background. When she speaks to me, the words take life in my soul and whenever I am in doubt, the melody of her wisdom reminds me to stop, pray, and follow that path that God has laid out before me.

How do you suggest women find mentors, especially if they don’t naturally fall into a relationship early in their careers or early on in life?

I would suggest that you listen to the women around you to find the ones that you admire. God leads us to our mentors, you just have to let Him. Also, you have to stay open-minded. I almost missed out on learning from one of the biggest inspirations in my life--another friend of mine--because her views differed from mine. What I learned and what I admire about her is her passion. She doesn’t compromise what she believes and she loved me in spite of our differences. It taught me not to judge the surface of everyone I meet.

Who are your biggest influences now?

My biggest influences now are my mom (she is a superstar), my aunts, Jill McAllister Burcham because she is ministry in action, Amy Quaye because she is wisdom, and all the H.O.P.E. girls because they teach me something every day.

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? Do you still follow it, or has it changed?

The best advice I ever received was from Amy, and it was to not let anyone or any situations steal my peace. That I have the power with every sunrise to decide what I  allow to steal my peace and diminish my light. That was ten years ago and it changed my life. It is the one thing I remind myself of daily.

Do you consider yourself a role model for others? If so, how does that change the way you approach work/life? How do you pay it forward? How would you advise other women to mentor others?

I don’t know if role model is the best description  for me, but I consider myself an example.  I’m an example of what God can do in your life. I make mistakes, but I know that His grace can pick me up, dust me off, and put me back on track. I approach life that way. No one and nothing is ever hopeless to me.  I suppose I have evolved into the eternal optimist.  I have seen how people change their lives when they are introduced to this amazing man named Jesus. I pay if forward by remaining passionate about what I know to be truth. No matter where you came from, what you’ve done, or what has been done to you, the power of Jesus gives you the authority to live abundantly! Above all that you ask or think – Ephesians 3:20. I would advise women to think about what they know are the truths in their lives and share them.  It’s about sharing the wisdom from our journey with other women that empowers us. Trust me, I know.

When you hear that someone looks up to you, what do you say to them? What is the one piece of advice you find useful to both give and remember in your life?

When I hear that someone looks up to me, I am always humbled but mindful that it’s the Jesus in me, and I tell them that.  Without Him I would still be a mess. The one piece of advice that I find useful to give and to remember is to REJOICE as much as possible.  It’s very liberating. Rejoice when someone is gracious to you, when the meal is fantastic, over new babies, beautiful art, great music, laughter with friends, walks in the park, learn to rejoice because of the everyday miracles.

How do you utilize social media to further your influence, if at all?

I use Facebook a lot. If someone has posted their sadness then I will often send them a private message to encourage them.  We live in a world where many times people will say on social media things they would never tell you in person. I just think that we have to be mindful of others' emotions. 

How do you empower women?

I try to empower women by connecting them with other powerful women.  We all have strengths that we can use to push each [other] along.

To learn additional information about the H.O.P.E. ministry, click here. If you are interested in donating to assist H.O.P.E. in their outreach and attainment of various goals, contact Kisha Johnson directly at kishajohnson@hopeladies.org
Kisha pictured with her daughter, Zarah.


Until we meet again...

Live Glamourously.

Friday, October 31, 2014

{World Class Woman: Female Empowerment Friday}

I preface this post by disclosing that several months ago, I had the brainchild to create a feature on Diva Style centered around female empowerment. This will highlight and celebrate women who are devoted to committing and engaging in inspirational acts and achieving greatness in and around their communities, no matter their particular passion or craft. I simply did not and do not feel that many of these power players receive enough accolades or exposure in general, and I feel a responsibility to bring their experiences, advice and wisdom to the forefront. The women featured here aspire to and succeed in touching the lives of others in a truly transcendental way, and I am extremely proud to call many of them friends. 

My first feature is my friend, Maimah Karmo, who I met through a mutual friend several years ago. She is many things, driven, a survivor, a beautiful light beam that continually influences and changes for good, the lives of other women. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, I couldn't be more ecstatic to be one of the purveyors of her wisdom and many of her accomplishments!

On February 28, 2006 at 4:45PM, Maimah was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer. She had no family history of breast cancer, and was only 32-years old. While undergoing her second round of chemotherapy, she made a promise to God that if she survived, she would create an organization to educate, empower, advocate for and support young women affected by breast cancer. After her second treatment, Tigerlily Foundation was born.  Beginning in chemotherapy, Maimah grew Tigerlily from a concept to a national organization with more than 300 volunteers nationwide, providing breast health, wellness and transformational programs for young women in more than 43 states. 

At this point in your life, what do you feel your claim to fame is? 

I don't know if I have a claim to fame, but I do know that I am happy to be able to serve others through my breast cancer work at Tigerlily Foundation. I am thankful to be surrounded by wonderful women making a difference in the world and impacting others through their philanthropic endeavors.

When you were just starting out, who was your first mentor? 

My first mentor would be my friend Tomette. I met her at my first corporate job when I was about 21. She was in her early thirties, and recognizing that I was young and new to corporate America, she took me under her wing.  Unlike a lot of the women at the job, she was not catty, she advised me on my career, my professional image, my future and my personal aspirations.  Her support and guidance was invaluable to me at a critical time in my life. We are still friends today.

How do you suggest women find mentors, especially if they don’t naturally fall into a relationship early in their careers or early on in life? 

I suggest joining professional groups and also getting involved in philanthropy.  I firmly believe in servant leadership and, that if you give, you get much more than you would expect.  Personally, the moment I decided to pursue a life of philanthropy, my life changed. When you put out a certain energy, people and situations are attracted to you.  Through my charity work, I had the opportunity to meet women of all ages who have become mentors, friends and supporters of me and my work; and have been extremely helpful in guiding me in my business and personal life.

Upper right: Maimah pictured with her daughter, Noelle

Who are your biggest influences now? 

I have so many! I surround myself only with people and situations that help me grow, that are positive and uplifting. With this as a guiding principle, I am surrounded by people daily who influence me in various ways.  Currently, a lot of my close friends are "mom-preneurs", who, like me, are raising children while running a business. We have built a strong bond as we support each other in our pursuit of making a difference in our communities and at home. 

What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? Do you still follow it, or has it changed? 

I don't think I've received a "best" advice, but I read a lot and follow leaders  in the business, spiritual, philanthropic and other walks of life who have inspired me.

Do you consider yourself a role model for others? If so, how does that change the way you approach work/life? How do you pay it forward? How would you advise other women to mentor others?

I don't like to consider myself as a role model per se, but I do like my philosophy about living, giving and service to others. After I was diagnosed with breast cancer 8 years ago, it made me realize that life is finite and that I needed to pursue the things that made me happy. It also made me strive to grow spiritually and seek out the people and things that helped me to achieve better ways of living and being. I pay it forward by helping others and I believe other women to do the same. If you always seek to edify others, life becomes much more simple and things come to you...

When you hear that someone looks up to you, what do you say to them?

What is the one piece of advice you find useful to both give and remember in your life?  It makes me smile, because I'm still figuring things out myself.  I'm thankful to be able to be an example to others in some way.  My 4th grade teacher, Ms. Chea told me before I graduated, to "Always Persevere". Those words have always stuck in my subconscious and followed me through good times and times when life presented me with opportunities to stretch and grow.

How do you utilize social media to further your influence, if at all?
I actually avoided social media for a long time, but through my work, got pulled into it.  I "looked up" one day and found that I had upwards of 40k people following me through various social media networks, which was a pleasant surprise to me, because I use it less to further my influence and more to share the good things that others are doing and to share empowerment.  It really reinforced for me that if you work to be your best and help others to do the same, that energy grows.

How do you empower women? 

I see every woman as unique and special in her own way. Each has a special light and I always look to see how I can support her aspirations, and grow to her highest potential.  At the end of the day, we all want two things: to be happy and to be recognized for who we truly are. When you truly "see" people, it is amazing how that can empower them. 

If you would like to donate to Tigerlily Foundation, or have additional inquiries, please email info@tigerlilyfoundation.org


Until we meet again,

Live Glamourously.

Monday, March 24, 2014

{A Little Midday Pick Me Up}

I enjoyed this.
Until we meet again...
Live Glamourously.

{Started From the Bottom. . .}

Now, we're here!
You know I love to streamline (and I loathe hanging/overdoor shoe racks),
so I paid The Container Store a little visit over the weekend.
I organized all my other shoes a while back, 
and it was time for me to complete the last stretch.
As you can see, they don't all fit (and I still have a few more in boxes),
but this will do for now. This is what I purchased to display my stilettos.
In other storage news, I recently completed a comprehensive makeup storage project. You can see past makeup storage "experiments" here and here.
. . .Aaaaand, I tied it all together in this little number from Ikea.
Until we meet again...
Live Glamourously.