Toni Toomey turns heads with bold threads.
Photograph by Luigi Ciuffetelli
Toni Toomey turns heads with bold threads.
There are three things a woman should do after meeting Toni Toomey. The order is clutch.
First, after being treated to her easy laugh, whisk her to happy hour for some much needed after-work catharsis. Second, pray she falls into an apple martini slumber so that you may, third, get your hands on her eclectic threads.
"Some people just have an eye for that extra thing that pulls everything together," Toomey says. The funny thing is, her self-deprecating nature doesn't allow her to see that she indeed has the eye.
Or the hair-a peachy strawberry blonde with hints of red that Clairol should purchase stock in.
Add a slim figure, a face graced with a Catherine Keener likeness and an aura better suited for the '70s, and you've got a woman who blithely ignores fashion norms.
"I never really realize how people perceive me," she says. "I walk around in
True, she certainly doesn't channel Kate Spade. She's more G.I. Jane meets Sheryl Crowe backstage at an Aerosmith concert.
Dressed in a bright citrus camisole, midriff-baring bolero jacket and a long denim camouflage skirt accented with a punk-rock studded belt, the stares are warranted: She may be the most daring fashionista in the state.
The Corum skull watch collides with the elegant diamond ring, but it works. The music industry influences Toomey's style, from Steven Tyler (her fashion icon) to the hip-hop industry. "I just love the language, the sunglasses, the bling.
"I'm definitely of the rock 'n' roll school," she says. "It's hard for me to get dressed knowing I have to be conservative. I fumble."
As a stylist at Pasca Salon, Toomey bucks conservative from 9 to 5. She and her dream team have styled shoots for Vogue Brasil,
At home, she frequents Studio 11, Angel Shack, South Moon Under and Quiet Storm.
Low maintenance, Toomey says she needs 20 minutes with MAC makeup before she's good to go. "I get dressed with other girls, and I wonder, "What can they possibly be doing in there?'" she says.
Besides a wicked sense of fashion, Toomey has another attractive quality-the ability to keep her lips sealed.
"My job involves a lot of drama and egos. It's performance art at its best," she says with a curvy grin. "You're dealing with something very personal, so clients just let loose. I know all of
One secret she will confess: "I'm not unapproachable," she says. "Everyone has a story. It can make you laugh, it can make you cry. But I always choose to make someone laugh. And to make me laugh, too."
Mike and Megan Papay
At $76 a pair, these ain't your granddaddy's boxers. At least you hope not. Birds Outstanding Boxer Shorts, however, are faithful repros of yesteryear's custom boxers.
"We want to produce the best fitting boxer in the world," says Megan, a 1994 graduate of Sanford School.
Since late last year, the couple has hawked their über underbritches on the Internet (www.birdsboxers.com)
and at Studio 11 in Wilmington. The "boxers for gentlemen" are available in classic fit and custom. Both sport the company's trademark quail logo (Papay's nickname for her husband is "Bird"), and they're packaged in a stylish button-down pouch.
The classic fit now comes in white, since folks found the original pink too preppy. The tailored fit, available only in blue, features a curved yoke and a three-button closure with no elastic in the waistband. They are fashioned from soft-but-sturdy sea island cotton, a material usually reserved for men's dress shirts.
"Mike's grandfather had all of his underwear custom made," says Papay. "The blue boxers are the remake of his grandfather's underwear."
Birds Boxers includes a pledge to "eliminate the bunching, elastic impressions from a tight waistband, blowouts in the man-zone (holes in the seat), and embarrassing shifting issues that include the dreaded fly 'pop-outs.'"
The company stops short of issuing a no-wedgie guarantee.
Olga Ganoudis' "Lost" jewelry can be found exclusively on the Web. Her other designs are available at her
Photograph of Olga by Luigi Ciuffetelli
Photograph of Necklace by Maria Giacchino
Where She's Meant to Be
Designer finds 'Lost.' A new line of jewelry is born.
Jewelry designer Olga Ganoudis was obsessed with the TV show 'Lost,' which she recorded to watch in her
Then she started thinking. If she were on an uncharted island, what would she design and what materials would she use" "Let's face it, after three weeks on the island, you wouldn't just stare out into space. How would you get busy? What would you do?"
Inspired by the show's weird symbols and numerology, she made a funky necklace. At lunch with friend Maria Giacchino in
As a result, Ganoudis' designs are now available at ABC's online store. The items are not worn by actors on the show, she explains. Instead, they are fan mementos. A strand of knotted black and brown leather, for instance, holds an oxidized sterling silver "numbers" pendant. She has created a total of four necklaces and a bracelet, ranging from $79.95 to $289.95.
"I found all this metal from the plane-and all these tools," Ganoudis says of her material choice. And the leather" "It's kind of like the trees- heavy vines."
Ganoudis recently made VIP party favors for the preview of Michael Giacchino's symphony, inspired by "Lost," which in September debuted in
The "Lost" jewelry is only available on the ABC website, but Ganoudis' other designs are featured at her studio on
"Everything has flowed the way it's meant to flow," she says. "It's been an adventure." -Pam George
Olive That Oil
A Wilmington company finds a not-so-secret beauty ingredient.
Don't hate Sophia Loren because she's beautiful. Steal her secret: extra virgin olive oil.
The oil is rich in vitamin E, which reduces wrinkles and moisturizes skin. But until now, no one has used it in upscale moisturizing products. A local company has cornered the market.
Wilmington-based Olevano Oil Company offers a line of creams, soaps, shampoos and face tonics that contain extra virgin olive oil that's been cold-pressed in Olevano, the
We tested Olevano's creams and soaps. Here's what we found:
The hand cream works well on dry and chapped skin. Hands appear younger after about a week of daily use. $20 a jar
The soaps are good. You'll still need to moisturize after bathing, though these all-natural bars are far richer than store-bought brands. Several scents, including aloe, baby powder and lemongrass, are available. Clients can order custom scents. The soap retains natural glycerin, which is typically removed in commercial soap making. The soap is hand poured into old-fashioned wooden molds. $20 for five bars
Olevano wrinkle and eye contour cream is the top pick. Applying small amounts to delicate areas diminishes the appearance of wrinkles. The cream is also light enough to wear under make-up. Use it at bedtime to calm morning puffiness. $50 a jar
Olevano, which also produces shower gel ($18), night cream ($40), face cleansing milk ($20) and face tonic ($20), is an international family affair. Owners Tom Delle Donne and Al Fierro formed the company in 2003 with their Olevanese cousins, who oversee operations in
The New Original
Scandinavian Trollbeads charm
You needn't look twice to see Trollbeads are nothing like your mother's charm bracelet. Yes, you can buy charms-known as beads-in sterling silver and 18-karat gold. Yes, you can get a mermaid to symbolize your love of the ocean or an Aztec design to remind you of your
But you can also get glass beads, amber beads and pearls. Unlike traditional charms, the beads are interchangeable, and you not only pick the style of bracelet or necklace, but you also pick the clasps.
The concept originated in 1976 in Scandinavia, but it wasn't until 2004 that creator Lund Trading brought the idea to the
Trolls have apparently been lucky for
The troll has also been lucky for Christina's. "I've become a destination store," says Ballas, who has begun offering the more exclusive gold beads to distinguish the store from other area Trollbeads vendors.
Christina's carries most of the designs. New beads are released quarterly. Some are retired. Some are reintroduced to the marketplace.
The price of silver beads ranges from $19 to about $70, with a gemstone. Gold accessories are more expensive. A clasp alone is $170, and a 15-inch necklace runs $1,200. At Christina's, you can sit at the counter and mix and match. "It's a great fun product."
Look for Trollbeads at other vendors such as The Jewelry Exchange in Lewes.
Dichotomy's diverse offerings include various styles of decorative candles.
One for All
Cooking, clothing and skin care are the focus of an eclectic new shop.
According to one definition, "dichotomy" refers to something with seemingly contradictory qualities. Dichotomy, a new store at State and
The shop offers kitchen accessories, women's clothing, handbags and gifts. Yet the diverse items share a commonality: They reflect owner Sally Lewis? interests.
"I really enjoy cooking, so that is how we came up with cooking," says Lewis, of
Kitchen items include products by Zyliss, a Swiss brand. Apparel is by Shop Therapy, which is known for its modern twist on hippie apparel. Colorful hobo bags are among the most popular items. The average bag price is $30.
Dichotomy also features Arbonne skin care products from
Lewis, who worked in retail in her 20s, decided to open Dichotomy when the food-gift boutique she planned with a friend fell through. "I decided to go ahead with the shop,? she says.
Because she?d previously helped her husband in his real estate business, she was familiar with downtown
Hours are noon to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, subject to change. To be safe, call first: (610) 444-2800.