The Game Plan


Ladyburg to open its Old Town location tomorrow

Posted by Editorial / Friday, July 24th, 2015

By Claudina Hannon

Ladyburg in Old Town Alexandria

Photo courtesy of Crystal Wellman

Ladyburg, the popular Fredericksburg bath and body boutique, will open a new location at 105 S. Union St. in Old Town Alexandria Saturday, July 25.

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Casual chic: 4 summer style tips for the post-grad guy

Posted by Editorial / Friday, July 24th, 2015

Left Shirt- Ralph Lauren, Right Shirt- J. Crew, Belts- J. Crew and Brooklyn Cloth, Strapback- Mitchell & Ness, Shorts- J. Crew

Left Shirt- Ralph Lauren, Right Shirt- J. Crew, Belts- J. Crew and Brooklyn Cloth, Strapback- Mitchell & Ness, Shorts- J. Crew

By Cameron Mellin

Summer’s here, and it seems every new-age office has begun to opt for comforted style over the staple suit-and-tie combo. But keeping it casual (be it in the workplace or on the weekend) doesn’t have to mean a wrinkled T-shirt and faded, loose-fitting jeans. Keeping your personal style satisfied this summer just takes some extra effort, and let’s be honest gents: If we’re going to bare more skin, it may take a few extra reps at the gym as well.

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How to shop for local vintage fashion

Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, July 22nd, 2015

By Claudina Hannon

Photo courtesy of  Whitney Stringer PR.

Instant Vintage 78′s 2014 pop-up shop event. Photo courtesy of Whitney Stringer PR.

Samantha Simms knows the local vintage scene. She and Stacie Washington are the founders of Instant Vintage 78, a local Etsy boutique that carries vintage clothes and accessories, as well as a small amount of retro items. For those unfamiliar with the term, retro items are those with a vintage look to them but are actually new and unused. Simms is also excited to share some vintage shopping tips with us and to also tell us about the local vintage pop-up shop event Instant Vintage 78 will have this weekend.

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This week’s top fashion news and events

Posted by Editorial / Tuesday, July 21st, 2015

By Claudina Hannon

Dress from the  b*ub*bly collection. Photo courtesy of Anand Jayaraman of AJ Photoz.

Dress from the b*ub*bly collection. Photo courtesy of Anand Jayaraman of AJ Photoz.

Undeniable Boutique’s New Clothing Line

Alicia Russman, owner of Undeniable Boutique, alongside design team Tamara and Andrew Akiyoshi, are launching a new clothing line called b*ub*bly. Visit Undeniable Boutique on July 24-26 for a three-day Champagne Party and to view the new collection. The b*ub*bly collection currently consists of three versatile and very wearable dress styles in nine different prints and colors. For details on the event, please visit the website.

Another dress style from b*ub*bly. Photo courtesy of Anand Jayaraman of AJ Photoz.

Another dress style from b*ub*bly. Photo courtesy of Anand Jayaraman of AJ Photoz.

Custom Ferragamo Shoes

Attention guys—head on over to Salvatore Ferragamo in Tysons Galleria now through Sept. 14 for a chance to customize your very own pair of the iconic Parigi driving moccasins. Shoppers will have the chance to take part in a very exclusive customization process and will get to choose from over 100 variations of materials, including hardware finishes, and even have the option of personalized lettering on the shoes.

Hair Demonstration at Bloomingdale’s

Visit Bloomingdale’s at Tysons Corner on July 23 for a complimentary hair demonstration and blowout using T3 hairstyling tools with the purchase of two Moses Signature Gold Line of hair products. Customers can book a one-on-one demonstration by calling 703-556-4608.

Shop Talk: The Jeans Whisperer

Posted by Angela Bobo / Friday, July 17th, 2015

The Jeans Whisperer Leesburg

Photo by Aaron Spicer.

Destination: Located on Loudoun Street in the midst of some of our favorite local boutiques, The Jeans Whisperer blends in perfectly with the comfortable, small-town atmosphere of historic Leesburg.

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12 beauty picks from Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale

Posted by Editorial / Thursday, July 16th, 2015

By Claudina Hannon

Nordstrom will have tons of top luxury products in its Anniversary Sale this week. Card members can actually take part in the beauty savings now, while other customers can shop the beauty savings from July 17-Aug. 2 while supplies last. We took an sneak peak at the selection of beauty products and compiled a list of what we couldn’t resist:


Anastasia Brow Studio set. Photo courtesy of

Anastasia Brow Studio set, $36. Photo courtesy of

This Anastasia gel holds brows in place throughout the day and gives them a natural look.


Alterna Caviar Moisture Kit. Photo courtesy of

Alterna Caviar Moisture Kit, $39. Photo courtesy of

The Alterna Caviar product trio helps maintain hydrated hair and also provides protection against environmental factors.


Giorgio Armani Glow Essential Set. Photo courtesy of

Giorgio Armani Glow Essential Set, $82. Photo courtesy of

Armani beauty has a great line of products to help achieve a glowing complexion, making them especially perfect for summertime.


beautyblender Must Have Trio. Photo courtesy of

beautyblender Must Have Trio, $37. Photo courtesy of

No makeup routine is complete without these beautyblender sponges. Use them to achieve a flawless and clean makeup application.


Chanel Travel Makeup Palette. Photo courtesy of

Chanel Travel Makeup Palette, $95. Photo courtesy of

Not only are the balance of neutral and bright colors in this palette great, but it also comes with a mini mascara for on-the-go touch-ups.


Chantecaille Perfect Skin Set. Photo courtesy of

Chantecaille Perfect Skin Set, $360. Photo courtesy of

The Chantecaille set comes with top-rated, best-selling beauty products: the rice and geranium foaming cleanser, anti-aging/lifting cream and a stress-fighting eye cream.



Clarisonic SMART Profile. Photo courtesy of

Clarisonic SMART Profile, $212. Photo courtesy of

This convenient two-in-one Clarisonic works with face and body brushes to deeply exfoliate and clean pores.


Clarins Double Serum. Photo courtesy of

Clarins Double Serum Duo, $135. Photo courtesy of

The oil- and water-based formulas along with pure plant extracts in this Clarins serum provide a good combination for healthy skin.


Deborah Lippmann Undressed Nail Polish Set. Photo courtesy of

Deborah Lippmann Undressed Nail Polish Set, $34. Photo courtesy of

Deborah Lippmann’s set of timeless nail shades gets a guaranteed check on our beauty checklist.


MoroccanOil Body Set. Photo

MoroccanOil Body Set, $92. Photo

Let your skin and hair be nourished with this MoroccanOil set, which includes a body soufflé, dry body oil and signature hair treatment.


MAC Fashion Lover Lip Kit. Photo courtesy of

MAC Fashion Lover Lip Kit, $29.50. Photo courtesy of

MAC’s Fashion Lover Kit brings out the best and brightest of the season through its peony purple shades, which can look glamorous on all skin tones.


Smashbox Studio Pro 10-Piece Set. Photo courtesy of

Smashbox Studio Pro 10-Piece Set, $89. Photo courtesy of

If you’re looking to upgrade your brush set, look no further. This Smashbox set even includes a cheat sheet on how to use each brush correctly.

Shop global fashion in NoVA

Posted by Editorial / Wednesday, July 15th, 2015

By Claudina Hannon

As Northern Virginians, we have the great advantage of living in a very culturally diverse area. Though at times we may be connoisseurs of international cultures, their respective cuisines and even customs, we may not always be aware of the fashion design talent the world has to offer, many in the form of emerging global designers. Thankfully, the Northern Virginia area is witnessing a rising trend of new shops that do carry international designers, such as shop DOKU, an Arlington-based online boutique, and Take 5 Boutique in Mosaic District. But it’s also great to know one can shop for lesser-known international designers at a store like Bloomingdale’s at Tysons Corner. We inquired about which designers the NoVA woman should shop for this summer, and here’s what the local experts had to say:

@ Shop DOKU


Andrea Iyamah

Bridala Swimsuit

Bridala Swimsuit. Photo courtesy of

 Shop DOKU’s cofounder Tomara Watkins says Andrea Iyamah’s swimsuits “really highlight your curves.” This designer’s bright shades and patterns will add a pop of color to your swimsuit collection.



Baby Doll dress

Baby Doll dress. Photo courtesy of

This design duo based out of Ghana delivers flattering silhouettes. The Baby Doll dress can serve as a flirty addition to your summer wardrobe.


ZAAF Collection

Weekender Tote

Weekender Tote. Photo courtesy of

Abai Schulze, the designer behind this Ethiopian brand, creates luxury leather handbags. “It’s probably a bag that you’ll have for the rest of your life,” Watkins says. The bags also showcase subtle, tribal-inspired African designs that are the perfect touch of international inspiration. This Weekender Tote is an ideal accessory for a summer trip.


 @ Take 5 Boutique



Coral Dress. Photo courtesy of

Coral Dress. Photo courtesy of

“It’s everybody’s favorite,” says Take 5 Boutique owner Sakina Iskender of the European brand. Roman’s designs are wearable sophistication for the NoVA woman. Many of the pieces can be transitional: During the day they can be fashionable office attire, and at night they work well as going out outfits.



Opposing Birds necklace. Photo courtesy of

Opposing Birds necklace. Photo courtesy of

The Resm jewelry pieces are beautifully detailed, and each piece is either 14- or 18-karat gold. Handcrafted in Azerbaijan, this jewelry collection’s ornamental patterns and symbols tell a story behind each design. Available in-store at Take 5 Boutique.


Gamze Saraçoğlu

Photo Prometheus72/

Photo Prometheus72/

Gamze Saraçoğlu is a Turkish designer whose designs Iskender describes as “very modern, clean looks [that are also] very feminine.” She’s absolutely right—if you are a fashion risk-taker, then these designs will fit your style sense like a glove. This designer knows how to balance a cutout with an accentuated waistline, along with lines that elongate the leg. Shop her collection in-store at Take 5 Boutique, and view her runway collections here.


@ Bloomingdale’s


Basalta Suede Moto Jacket. Photo courtesy of

Basalta Suede Moto Jacket. Photo courtesy of

The items in this Parisian collection show the brand’s versatility. There are more structured pieces like boxy motorcycle jackets and flared skirts, but there are also silk blouses and shift dresses that are perfect for this season. Overall, the pieces are sporty yet feminine everyday wear. 



Religione Deep Plunge dress. Photo courtesy of

Religione Deep Plunge dress. Photo courtesy of

This Parisian designer’s collection is full of formfitting and casual designs that showcase simplicity and French chic. Any NoVA woman will love the easy-to-wear pieces, detailed work and lace in the collection. 


July’s Best in Beauty

Posted by Angela Bobo / Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

Brighten up your beauty regimen with these six selections.Angela Bobo

July's Best Beauty products

Photo by Mike Ramm.

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7 summer bronzer picks from a makeup pro

Posted by Editorial / Friday, July 10th, 2015

By Claudina Hannon


Bronzer picks from a makeup pro

Photo courtesy of Indira’s work/


We spoke with Bluemercury makeup artist Rachelle Dalton at the Alexandria location to get her recommendations on the most popular bronzers for this summer season. We also have added bonus staff picks to ensure that you have enough options to fulfill your product must-haves. If you haven’t yet shopped for a bronzer this season, try one of these at your local beauty store. The variety of shades available per brand give a great range of options that can suit your complexion and skin type. 

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Insider Beauty Secrets

Posted by Angela Bobo / Thursday, July 9th, 2015

It can be hard to keep up with the changing local beauty scene, especially if you are a NoVA native and have fallen into the habit of frequenting the same spots. Summer tends to be a time of experimentation, and finding a new place strictly through Yelp reviews can be seriously hit or miss.

Every woman needs that one friend who seems to know everything and everyone to keep them up-to-date, so we tapped three of the area’s most fashionable and social ladies to share their favorite go-to haunts that help them look and feel beautiful from head to toe. –Angela Bobo

Katya Ananieva

Photo by Nikky Richardson.

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