Author Archives: charity

  Self-care at J Bellezza at Pinecrest

Happy Wednesday you guys! Hope everyone is settled into this week and enjoying the holiday countdown. If you are anything like me you still have a list a mile long of things-to-do, gifts to buy, people to see, etc before the 25th. I’ve seriously got to start crossing off my list!

One thing I try really hard NOT to miss during this busy holiday season is anything self-care related. I try not to skip a workout or back out of my hair color or manicures. Self-care is always something that typically gets brushed aside in my life, but not now, not during December. It’s also my birthday month so I am kinda partial to looking and filing my best as I tack on another year!

The other day I had the privilege of checking out the new J Bellezza salon at Pinecrest for a visit to their infrared saunas and have a luxury hair blow out..what a treat! The infrared sauna visit was super relaxing and almost put me into a meditative state. I didn’t necessarily sweat a bunch but the women at the salon assured me when I come back my body would start to recognize the warmth of the infrared and automatically sweat a bunch…releasing toxins. I loved being in control of the color remote, choosing the perfect shade of pink, green and bright blue, the various hues hugged my soul and overall made me feel very relaxed and centered. I for sure want to go back, especially during the long, very gray, Ohio winter days. You’ve got to try it out.

My hair blow out added to the relaxation afternoon. It’s always the best to have someone else give my scalp a little rub a dub dub and then spend the time to lovingly blow dry hair. I have A TON of hair and it takes a pretty good chunk of time to give it the best love. Hence you see me with my hair up in a top knot 50% of the time. My stylist Dena really spent the perfect amount of time to give me a great ‘do, mostly full and straight with a touch of a wave on the ends…perfection.


Not only does J Bellezza have relaxing infrared saunas and special stylists, but they also have a great retail store filled with lots of different beauty products. Hair masks, gift sets for new mothers, teas and more. Next time you are at Pinecrest make a stop into J Bellezza for any gift-giving needs.

Now that I am done writing this little ditty, I think I need to make a call and schedule a few appointments for the next few holiday weeks… happy self care everyone!

SPONSORED POST: Thank you to J Bellezza for inviting me to explore their new salon and spa. Thanks for supporting this business, while allowing me to create special content like this for iheartcleveland!

  Loving Limelight; a co-working space

Hey CLE friends. How was your long holiday weekends? I feel like so many of you were off all last week. From the looks of your feeds, you got in some serious sunshine, lake time, friend time and lots of grilling and cocktailing! GO SUMMER!

For the past three weeks, I have been battling with some serious poison ivy stuff. I went to the doctor and they put me on a high dosage of prednisone (steroids) and that put my poor body into a tailspin. I haven’t been able to concentrate, sleep, form thoughtful sentences, and man have I been irritable…these meds are no joke. Anyhow, last week I had, had enough and stopped taking the steroid all together….come to find out is also a bad solution. Your body needs to slowly come down; aka withdrawal itself from these drugs but I just couldn’t do them anymore and then my body got really mad at me. My face swelled for a few days (thank god for bangs) and now it’s my hands. I swear, when something goes wrong I totally realize how I take my health and wellness for granted. I am a strong, rather healthy individual but these last few weeks I have felt totally out of control; helpless in my own skin. I see the light at the end of the tunnel but man, if you ever get prescribed that drug I would totally recommend trying anything you can do to not take it. It’s bad sh*t! (now onto my story)

So many of you may or may not know that I own a branding and packaging design firm called studio Chartreuse. For over fifteen years we have collaborated with start-up entrepreneurs as well as larger manufacturing, institutional and nonprofit clients. We have a very creative studio space located on the west side of Lakewood on Madison Ave. that is filled daily with tons of sunshine and groovy tunes. I love the space we have created including our outdoor mini “petite parc” space where our clients and friends like to come and brainstorm, have coffee or rosé and just connect face to face. We swap out the artwork and switch out furniture to keep the space feeling high style and relevant, it keeps us all excited and engaged to come to work. This summer we wanted to get out more into the community, do a little work off-site now and then. Keeping our workflow fresh and exciting while super productive during the summer months…enter Michelle of Limelight.

Michelle reached out to me a few months ago about their new co-work space; Limelight. While I was interested, I didn’t really have an immediate need for workspace. As our summer flex time rolled around I thought it would be the perfect place to explore and spend the day working from…and off we went.

First off, can I just say this new work space is GORGEOUS! It’s not your average cubicle, office furniture hub. It’s a work destination filled with bold colors, incredible patterns, little nooks for creative collaborations and conversations while also offering spaces for small and medium meetings including teleconferencing needs. It is boho chic while offering the latest and greatest in technology for entrepreneurs, and fellow small businesses. Limelight is located in Ohio City just off West 25trh on Jay Ave. That morning I met our team at Limelight and we spent the day developing new branding, meeting with a potential new client and brainstorming on a new packaging initiative. While Lakewood has a handful of fun lunch spots, we loved being close to all of the West 25th action and had lunch at Town Hall. In the afternoon we enjoyed the hustle and bustle energy of the other co-workers in the space and a great coffee from the limelight bar..they also have Great Lakes on tap! If you are looking for the perfect co-work space for you, give Michelle a call and she can explain all of their membership options. You never know…you might even see me there from time to time because…it’s just so chic and inspiring. Nice job guys, Limelight has a little piece of my heart! I heart Limelight!

  Exploring Thriftique


Hey friends. Hope you are having a great winter week. As we are already into our second week in February I was doing some reflecting and realized I had a pretty full January. It was filled with lots of goal setting and creative-retreat type of events; so all good. Going into this new month I want to set aside more time to sit down, connect with you and do more writing. I truly am a geek when it comes to setting goals and creating strategies to see the goals to fruition. Go 2018!

With that said, it is time to come back to blogging and fill you in on a few fun things I have been up to lately. I’ve been doing my best to take in all of the Oscar-nominated films so when it comes time for the Academy’s I will be in-the-know. So far I gotta say “I Tanya” is right up there as one of my favorites. Don’t dismiss this vintage-inspired skater’s story mixed with some funny story-telling humor…it’s totally worth the see.

We have been doing some serious travel prep for our upcoming visit to India. Thanks to our friends Nick and Shibani for hosting us the other evening for an Indian food feast followed by fashion tips & trying on Shihbani’s sarees. I am so much better informed now and am ready to get my travel packing on this weekend!

We have also been enjoying winter-weekends with our little guy. As parents to a 3-yr old, we recognize that we need to plan weekend activities more to keep us all from going stir crazy indoors. Don’t get me wrong, we spend a lot of time in his playroom with blocks, cars, and puzzles…but trips to the Natural History Museum have really made winter fly by. We have also really enjoyed our weekly swim classes through our neighborhood rec center. It’s fun to see progress each week as all of the kids jump in the pool! This weekend we are excited to go see Paw Patrol at Playhouse Square. We have seen it before but we think at his current age (3!) he might really be more aware of the show and its characters. Looking forward to spending family time at the theaters.


This week I had the pleasure of visiting and shopping Thriftique Showroom, one of Northeast Ohio’s largest upscale resale shops run by all volunteers from the NCJW. At this fashion & home decor destination all proceeds from the store support NCJW/Cleveland programs, geared toward improving the lives of women, children, and families in our community.


As a regular thrift and vintage shopper, I was invited to take the #thriftiquechallenge and this store truly exceeded my expectations. When I arrived everyone was so kind and welcoming I immediately felt like I was amongst “my people” aka other thrift shopper enthusiasts. They explained to me that the front of the store; “The Tique” was filed with their higher-end, luxury clothing donations (including names like Prada, Lilly & Kate Spade) while the back of the store was a more traditional thrift store. Thriftique is home to some of the season’s most-coveted and trendy items, without the hefty price tag which is right up my alley as a quantity AND quality type of fashionista.


I got sucked into the shoe section for a good :15 minutes. They had these incredible leopard printed wedges that I would have loved to have but they were slightly too small…someone with a size 7 go snag them! I ended up with a new-ish pair of black patent-leather, mary janes with gold trim on the heel…perfect for spring. I also bought a like-new, men’s pastel plaid button down to throw over white jeans and a bathing suit while on vacation; I can’t wait to share. I really enjoyed all of their furniture and the housewares and wanted to take everything home…but alas I am running out of space at home for furniture so had to leave a few great things behind. Does anyone need/wants a campaign-style dresser and bedside table? Or how about some very 80’s which dining room chairs? Or they also have a few great vintage couches…I mean RUN don’t walk! I bought some retro linen napkins and a big, yellow, mid-century pot. This place is a true destination for incredible thrift pieces, I can’t believe it has taken me so long to learn about it.

The Thriftique Showroom is open on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays from 10-5pm. Go explore for yourself! To get a sneak peak on what’s at the showroom give them a follow on Facebook or instagram it’s always fun to see behind the scenes.

SPONSORED POST : Thank you to Thiftique for inviting me to explore their store with a gift card shopping spree and share my experience as a guest to their store as part of their social outreach. Thanks for supporting this local non profit, while allowing me to create special content like this for iheartcleveland!

  Falling in love with VNTG Home

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A few weeks ago I was exploring this warehouse space filled with eclectic chairs, tables and armoires. It had rows of one-of-a-kind artwork and cozy sitting nooks with couches and coffee tables. There was a room filled with vintage china as far as the eye can see and another room with exquisite Parisian fabrics all meticulously lined up and ready to dress the seat of a chair, bench or occasional ottoman. Was I dreaming? Where was this mecca of all things vintage? Had I died and gone to home decor heaven? Nope, I was at Cleveland’s newest vintage furnishings marketplace called VNTG Home.

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When you first step inside visit VNTG Home you will feel as if this special design destination has been there forever, but in reality, owner Megan and her team have done an incredible job filling the space with different styles and offerings to make our adventure in home decor a super awesome experience. It was like I was on a big treasure hunt and I was ready to get my hands dirty.

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Not only does VNTG Home sell one of a kind vintage pieces that also pride themselves at being able to upcycle anything from old to new! Something as small as your broken chair that you’ve been hoarding in your basement (thats me!) to your family heirloom couch that you would really like to give new life too, the creative and talented designers on their team will help you choose the best fabrics, trims, paints and more to make your upcycled piece one-of-a-kind.

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I was so excited to have brought along my old chair for a fall makeover. I needed another accent chair for the corner of our grown up living room area and I knew VNTG Home could help. I have been moving this chair around for year. I love it’s modern lines, brass details and mixture of metal and upholstery. I knew I wanted it to look pretty and sophisticated, to be “weighty” but delicate in feel. I met with one of the designers and she helped me go through all the fabrics until we came upon a sweet, almost paint splattered looking tone on tone fabric. We added a detail of a slate blue, linen piping to both sides of the seat cushion and planned to paint the chippy black metal a nice shade of natural white. The entire process of upcycling my old chair was so easy because I had someone their guiding me through the creative, fun process. It wasn’t scary or overwhelming, it was really a great way to take something you have (although you could also choose something they have) and make it new and relevant again.

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I think in today’s world we each want furnishings in our homes and apartments that reflect our own personal style. Being able to make something that speaks to you or that matches with something you already have is really cool. Everyone can have a big box store chair or dining room table but none else would have a chair just like one I made with them and I was pretty pumped about it.

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(our “new” chair…I’ll have more photos soon when I have it really nice and photographed but I couldn’t wait to share!)

If you haven’t been to visit VNTG home, take advantage of all the excitement this Saturday at Tyler Village during the Cleveland Flea and go explore the marketplace upstairs. They have a whole new section of throw pillows that would take your couch or bed from plain to glam in no time, don’t miss out. If you can’t wait unit tomorrow, their online shop is open 7 days a week and they do a great job with updating the new pieces as they hit the showroom floor. I can’t say more good things about this shop other than I’m in LOVE!!!

I’m going to be visiting VNTG Home over the next few months and sharing some more exciting projects and offerings so stay tuned. In the meantime, save the date for their spooky, eco-chic evening soirée on Wednesday, October 25th where you will have the opportunity to win some great prizes including a gift card to the store. Register here. I can’t wait to celebrate tricks and treats at VNTG Home. See you there!

SPONSORED POST : Thank you to VNTG Home who invited me to share my experience as part of their social outreach. Thanks for supporting this local businesses, while allowing me to create special content like this for iheartcleveland!

  Alex Katz at the CLE Museum of Art

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Hello & Happy Friday friends. What a yucky day, so chilly and wet…Let’s just say it wasn’t the best day for my open-toed, suede booties…brrr! Looks like it supposed to stay around the 50 degree temps pretty much all weekend which means finding activities for the family indoors…enter Cleveland Museum of Art to the rescue.

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Not only do they have an incredible area for the kiddo’s, they just opened “Brand-New & Terrific” an exhibit of the work of Alex Katz from the 1950’s. Let’s just say, I am a bit of an art geek and this exhibit might be one of the best I’ve seen in some years.

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His work is so totally relatable almost 70 years later. The color combinations are bright and very friendly, you can’t help but smile. I very much enjoyed all of the abstract florals and can even envision them on a skirt or the perfect summer sundress…for the Summer Solstice! I can’t wait to go back to the exhibit and take in more of his work, it is just so cheery. I promise you will love the exhibit and it is going to be the perfect weekend, weather-wise to be indoors. Enjoy & Happy FridYAY!

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