I always seem to be drawn to a neutral palette, both in my closet, and my living spaces. There is something so refreshing, timeless, and soothing about living in a muted home. I love discovering new, talented interior designers to share with you, since many of my followers have growing families and are looking for someone to help decorate a new home, that is both kid-friendly and beautiful. One I admire, and appreciate is Alyssa Kapito. I met Alyssa in her Soho showroom for our interview, which looks like a beautiful mini apartment in and of itself. I loved her technique of using multiple textures instead of bold patterns and colors to make a room interesting. She gives a great amount of time and attention to her clients, is a pleasure to be around, and has a great eye.Read More
As you all know I am sweating puddles over at Tracy Anderson on a daily basis, and sitting in that sweat for about 2 hours through classes. I always thought that cotton was the most breathable material to wear during my workouts, however I was sorely mistaken. After a long and informative interview with the very inspirational, Stacey Hunter, founder of Quo Active Gear, I learned that the undergarments I’d been wearing cause bacteria which lead to infection. Although it’s not the most glamorous topic, the truth is when we sit in our sweat for extended periods of time, women are prone to yeast infections and urinary tract infections, both incredibly painful and undesirable. Quo undergarments are made with science in mind, ensuring that even if we sweat for a long time, the underwear absorbs the wetness, decreasing the chance of bacteria forming. I wear them everyday, and I can attest to them being life-changing. Quo is also coming out with a full line of athleisure in the same amazing fabric very soon!Read More
My favorite gift for the holidays are Lele Sadoughi headbands! I wear mine everyday, and it makes my outfit complete. Whether it’s a good hair day, or a bad one, I pop on a jeweled headband and instantly look put together and cohesive. Lele is incredibly creative, always having fun with bold, bright colors, and fun materials to make her costume jewelry. Her signature floral earrings are a staple in my jewelry box, and they are so light, I hardly feel like I’m wearing anything. I’m excited for her new collection of home decor and sunglasses, as whatever she designs is always very happy and beautiful.Read More
I’ve been in outerwear my entire life. It was my family business for generations, and I worked right here in the garment district where our offices were located almost every summer of my childhood. I definitely know a good coat when I see one, and Michelle Waugh has mastered her craft. Michelle’s outerwear collection is elevated and chic, tailored and classic. She has coats fit for every occasion, but what’s even more special about her line is that all of her pieces can be worn both casually and formally. They are versatile. Her fabrics and fits are stellar, making women feel beautiful and confident throughout their day. Her palette is neutral, and complement any outfit. Michelle happens to be one of the sweetest, most genuine women I’ve met, and her talent makes her a triple threat!Read More
I go for facials regularly, and typically it’s Biologique Recherche. However, I am always open to finding new methods to further tone my face, and give me a healthy glow. It seemed like everywhere I went, people were talking about Face Love, and how this woman re-sculpts your face with just her hands. She was so popular, it was difficult to get an appointment, but I finally found her in the new space she took at Stretch’d. The vibe is incredibly zen and relaxing, and when Rachel Lang’s hands touch your face, you can feel the magic happen. She uses her hands and tools to circulate the blood in your skin and stimulate collagen. It was like facial exercise, and it worked! My face felt instantly lifted, and even my husband noticed and complimented my fresh, rosy skin.Read More
I’m always looking for ways to eat healthier, and make nutrition convenient. It’s difficult as a working mom to constantly be cooking healthy meals during the week, and takeout is such an easy option in NYC. In an effort to have that fresh food in my house, I reached out to chef Sarah Pachelli, an all around wellness guru. Sarah is the perfect example of everything is moderation, and you can tell that she listens to her body, and takes care of herself. She comes to the house with already prepared meals that can get you through the week, always with the best, most nutritious ingredients, and also teaches you how to cook them for yourself. Sarah teaches destination yoga retreats as well, ensuring her clients are balanced from the inside, out!Read More
We all know I’m a total exercise addict, but because of this addiction, my body needs some extra TLC. I work out for 2 hours most days at Tracy Anderson, and the heavy impact is hard on my legs and feet. Most times I have a physical therapist friend who helps with cupping and deep tissue massage, however she has been traveling, and I needed a new place to turn to. Amanda Freeman, recently opened her new business, Stretch’d http://stretchdspace.com, a beautiful, open, airy space dedicated to stretching the body to eliminate aches and pains, and get the body aligned. She has an incredible staff, that know the body well, and you leave feeling loose and relaxed. They use both their hands and machines like the TheraGun to get deep into the achey places. Amanda is no stranger to the wellness world, as she also founded SLT years ago. She’s really onto something, and I know both men and women could benefit from the various treatments at Stretch’d.
How many years have you been in business in NYC?
We have been in business for 5 months.
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
I began my career as a trend forecaster studying the consumer behavior of Generation X & Millenials. Twelve years ago, I worked on a trend we called the "Rise of Well-consciousness" and ever since I’ve been a serial wellness entrepreneur. My first wellness endeavor was a healthy living daily e-newsletter called Vital Juice. RIP! We delivered the latest information in fitness, nutrition, beauty and wellness to the inboxes of over 250,000 women. I got so obsessed with boutique fitness that in 2011, I opened my own studios called SLT. Nearly 7 years later, we’re opening our 25th location later this month.
The idea for Stretch*d came from my observations of the fit folks around me who were spending an average of 5 days a week engaged in high impact workouts and suffering from injuries. As a society, we’ve been so focused on working out (and living) to the max, but forgetting about recovery. I had observed in my studios, as well as at others, that clients often skipped out of classes before the stretch at the end. Yet, when these same people worked out one-on-one with a trainer, they relished the last 5 minutes when they’d get stretched out. Thus, Stretch*d was born.
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
There are other companies that offer one-on-one assisted stretch services, however I believe we’ve created a best-in-class training program and stretch protocol. I also believe we offer the best customer experience. We’ve created a premium brand and space that goes beyond basic stretch services. Lastly, we also offer in-home and office stretch.
What do you feel gives you longevity in this big city with so many options?
The key to success in NYC is the combination of offering a reliably outstanding service that delivers results, along with creating a brand people want to be a part of.
How do you positively impact your clientele?
We make them feel better, provide them a respite from their daily activities and offer them a better quality of life.
What is your favorite part of your job?
I am driven by offering clients a service that makes them happy and healthy. I love getting positive feedback and hearing the impact it’s making on people’s lives. I hate negative feedback, but am open to learning from it.
What is your favorite secret NYC spot?
Hmm…hard to keep anything great a secret in NYC these days. Souen isn’t a secret, but it’s my fave Macrobiotic eating spot that most people dismiss as too healthy. I could pour their carrot ginger dressing on anything and happily eat it.
How do you benefit mamas?
Stretch*d is an amazing service for a mom. We lug our kids around, tote heavy handbags and juggle so much that are bodies are screaming for relief. Stretch*d is that relief and respite from a busy day. We are also a safe and effective pampering experience for expecting moms.
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
We’ve been getting awesome feedback from both men and women alike. However, most striking are the rave reviews from many of the male clients. Some are fitness-enthusiasts, but many have just been looking for an antidote to the wear and tear of sitting at a desk all day and not feeling like there are many pampering options geared towards men.
Pay it forward and name your top colleagues in the same field or related field.
I love FaceLove for a heavenly face massage and tenoverten for a non-toxic mani/pedi.
What is the best advice anyone's ever given you? Or what is your "mantra" / words to live by?
My mantra is “More, Worse”. It’s a long story, but probably the most valuable thing I can share, so I’m gonna tell it and you can cut or edit as you see fit.
During a class I took at Harvard Business School called Women Building Businesses, I was struck by a common occurrence I saw happen with nearly every female CEO who spoke to our class. They were all incredibly successful in their careers at the expense of their personal lives. When asked about their “work/life balance,” nearly all of them broke down in tears because they had decided to, as one CEO put it, “Do less, better.” They chose focus on one area of their life (their career) and knock it out of the park, and that was always what being a killer CEO of a Fortune 500 company meant.
I was so struck by the regret I saw in these women, that I made the decision to “Do more, worse.” I no longer wanted to be CEO of a giant company if it meant forgoing some of the personal experiences I also wanted to have like having kids, being in a relationship, being a present mom/friend/sister, etc. I would rather have what I like to call “abundant mediocrity”. I am willing to be less than perfect if it means not missing out on the important things in life.
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick?
I shower at night after my kids are asleep and air dry my hair.
My girls love to dance, love to perform, but for some reason, every dance class I put them in was unsuccessful. They were always disinterested, never wanting to leave the apartment in the cold, after coming home from school. I would end up paying for an entire semester of ballet, and they showed up to maybe 3 classes. I’m not one to force an activity, so I let it go until I found out that one of my favorite Tracy Anderson trainers started her own dance program downtown. Katy Schuele has been a dancer her whole life, and was also a Knick’s city dancer, which being a big basketball fan, made me love her even more! She is great with children, adores teaching, and found a great dance school to hold her hip hop classes. My girls absolutely love dance class because of Miss Katy, and are always eager to get to class on time. They are learning amazing routines, listening to their favorite tunes, and Katy’s encouragement and endless positivity are infectious. I actually get a little jealous at drop off because I want to stay and dance with them!Read More
This feature was a very special find. I always aim to help women and mothers, so when I met with the brilliant Dr. Paige Bellenbaum and Dr. Catherine Birndorf, it was like a dream come true. These two women created The Motherhood Center, a perinatal day program, for postpartum depression, that blew my mind. They offer private counseling, classes (meditation, yoga, art therapy, mindfulness), group sessions for partners, and even have a nursery for the babies of their patients. Each patient has a plan, routine, and schedule that is designed to cater to their personal needs, and support them daily until they feel comfortable and embrace their connection with their baby and community. This center gives women the ability to conquer their anxieties and fears related to motherhood. These incredible doctors “mother the mother,” making sure all of their patients leave feeling like confident, connected and capable parents. Their work, and expertise is remarkable, and I hope that so many women suffering out there, read this, and go get the help they deserve.Read More
I have two girls, both equally theatrical, at all times. They both love to sing, dance, and perform at any chance they get. That being said, it’s been particularly difficult getting them involved in an acting program downtown, because up until now, there were essentially no options. I’m excited to announce a new program that recently opened their doors to all downtown mini actors, ready to get on the stage. Its name is very fitting, Spotlight Kids, and the women who created it are both NYC Moms! They are putting on their first performance this semester, Alice in New York, so if you have children who would love participating in this theatrical performance, sign them up.Read More
Last week, I was lucky enough to reunite with all of my closest girlfriends at BA&SH Nolita for an evening of shopping and cocktails. This womenswear collection, originating in Paris, now has stores rapidly popping up all over the US. It started with two best friends who wanted to make beautiful things, and they are doing just that, with the most stunning jeweled sweaters, chiffon dresses, and fitted jackets. What’s even better, is that the line is accessible, although I’m still trying to figure out how they make such high quality product at an affordable price. Everything in the store is geared for friends shopping together and having a fun experience, right down to the photo booth in the dressing room! The store itself is beautiful, open, airy and inviting, so I suggest everyone go for a visit to try out this new, innovative shopping experience.Read More
When it comes to infertility, the CCRM clinic in NYC is where you want to be. Best-friend duo, Jaime Knopman and Sheeva Talebian, have helped numerous close friends of mine get pregnant, and their bed-side manner is what every woman hopes for. Most fertility clinics are more like factories, where you go and sit in a big room staring at a lot of strangers before being seen. At CCRM you get the personalized attention and privacy you want when it comes to struggling with infertility. Their labs are the most high-tech in the country, with innovations that most other clinics do not have. Dr. Knopman and Dr. Talebian discuss all of their patients together as a team, to come up with the most successful plan for each individual.Read More
So, some people are visual, some auditory, but, my personal sensory guide, is smell! I’ve always been one to take in an experience based on scent. Oddly, I even wrote my college essay on that topic alone! That being said, my keen sense of smell has always deterred me from wearing perfumes or scented oils, simply because I could not stand any one smell for too long. Olfactory NYC is changing the game when it comes to fragrances, as they aim to make more mild, natural scents, and personalize each one, enabling you to be interactive in the blending and bottling process. It’s DIY for fragrance, and the process can be shared with your children, as they are a family-friendly shop, and want to make more of a fun experience than just your average fragrance store. If you visit, ask them to sample the Mama & Tata which I concocted myself!Read More
By far, the longest relationship I’ve ever had is with my cuticle cutters. From the day we met, we have had an unbreakable bond. We both love to Netflix and chill, we travel together, have made drunken mistakes together, and never go to bed without saying good night.
It’s sad to have to announce, that at this time, my cuticle cutters and I have decided to take a break. This is not a decision I take lightly, for fear that my beloved cuticle cutters will become unhinged, but it had to happen, for I have fallen in love with another. Meet Sundays.Read More
I think it’s so important to maintain a steady diet that is both nutritious, and satisfying. One of the hardest struggles with regards to pregnancy, and the postpartum phase for women, is body image and weight gain. I’ve met many dietitians and nutritionists out there, all wonderful, but none specifically focusing on women preconception, with infertility issues. Sarah Rueven, has a great way about her, always fully committed and available to her clients.
She takes a very personal approach to her practice, making sure her clients feel comfortable and supported throughout the process, as if she were a friend. She leads by example, living a very healthy lifestyle herself through nutrition and fitness, and has helped many women get pregnant through her holistic methods. We had fun going through her pantry together, learning about healthy snacks and alternatives to typical cravings. I wish I’d known about her when I was having children, as I know she would’ve been incredibly helpful to me during some tough hormonal times. Luckily, she’s available now to all of you!Read More
When dressing my girls, I tend to search for clothing similar to my own. I have daughters, so naturally we like to dress up and look pretty, particularly for special occasions and holidays. The best one-stop-shop for all children’s ready-to-wear is Posh boutique in Brooklyn, just over the Bridge. I go there before a vacation, and select an entire wardrobe for both of my girls, that I know we will all love. They carry all of the most unique designers from around the world, particularly European collections you cannot find any place else. Posh also provides personal shopping and will send out pieces on consignment if you are too busy to visit the store.Read More
I always like to be well-informed on the residential real estate market in NYC, as my husband works in the industry. This project called Waterline Square came to my attention, as 3 very impressive architects took on the project as a team, and worked on a set of 3 large towers that complemented one another, with a 3 acre shared park in the center. Overlooking the Hudson River, this property was a neighborhood in and of itself. Cipriani took the largest commercial space in the complex, creating their most unique restaurant, lounge and Italian market, with outdoor seating in the park. Not only did GID create an outdoor sanctuary, beneath the park lies a regulation size tennis court and basketball court, with a full spa, play center, art rooms, gym, and recreation area. I was floored by the land they’d acquired and the way they created this hotel-like experience, with luxury amenities that trump many other buildings in the city. It’s also conveniently located next to the new Collegiate School and Heschel School, so you really do not have to leave the 5 acre radius!Read More
Sunday funday was spent at the beach pit of the Surf Lodge in Montauk, where I hosted friends and family for a day of children’s activations and delicious mini bites. Monica & Andy put together a great roster of activities including DJ lessons, making customized hand painted jackets, building sand castles, and face painting. The kids snacked on mini lobster rolls, chicken fingers, crudités, mini grilled cheese, and fresh little spoon smoothies packed with healthy ingredients. Monica & Andy had a booth filled with the cutest printed onesies, dresses and pajama sets, my favorite being the banana leaf print! Everyone enjoyed mingling and the kids had a fun-filled day, which is really what Sundays are all about! A win win!Read More
Having been in education the majority of my life, and teaching children with learning disabilities, I know the importance of various therapists to help young children find success. Many children I worked with struggled with speech in some form, and finding a great speech pathologist that goes above and beyond to connect with each child is a priority in fixing the issue. Luckily, Andie Schneider opened up her own speech pathology practice in New York called New York Speaks, and she has expanded her services to the Hamptons this summer. She works with both children and adults, and does home visits to make the session convenient for parents on the east end.Read More
Another amazing addition to Sag Harbor town is ONDA Beauty, founded by three very health-conscious women aiming to change the beauty game. Larissa, Naomi and Sarah have joined forces to create a space for women to visit that is both relaxing and zen. The goal being to eliminate all of the toxins we put on our bodies daily, and find the best, clean, all natural products to replace them with. They sell everything from natural makeup to lotions, bath products, cleansers, and herbal remedies. They have a wealth of knowledge when it comes to their products, and help find the perfect regimen for each individual customer. ONDA Beauty has the most incredible aestheticians working in their treatment rooms, doing custom facials everyday, and the backyard serves as a relaxation space designed by Urban Zen. My favorite of their products is the Lord Jones CBD lotion to soothe muscle aches and pains. Not only do I love the scent, but it actually has worked to heal my Achilles after a recent injury, so I am thankful they turned me on to this product.Read More