The List Volume Blackout

By |November 24th, 2012|The List|

black friday rushNo, I wasn’t absent from the internet yesterday because I was busy bashing in skulls in hopes of acquiring a fifty inch plasma to watch “Keeping Up with the Kardashians.”  I was busy digesting my Thanksgiving dinner… and that took a lot of hard work and concentration… or wine.  To be quite clear, I find Black Friday to be all my worst nightmares and biggest fears combined.  It’s kind of the same way I feel about fake handbags.  I find it hard enough to shop busy stores on your average Tuesday, let alone when all the animals have been let out of their cages and taunted with raw meat.  There are about a billion other things I’d rather do than fight over a cashmere scarf marked down 50%… ten of which are listed here.  The only type of bargain shopping I will submit myself to are the deals that can be found behind the safety of my computer screen.  That said, I didn’t figure it’d be in good taste to complain after my last post.  So I’ve decided to be a bit charitable today and have found you ten places better to throw your hard earned money: small businesses and charities.

  1. Not sure where to start?  Check out American Express for a list of retailers participating in Small Business Saturday.
  2. As obsessed with your dog/cat as I am with Smitty?  Help out all the other furry little creatures by donating or volunteering with the ASPCA.
  3. Mikini Bikini is offering 10% off with code COLORFULFRIDAY at checkout.
  4. Got kids?  Got siblings? Like kids?  Stop human trafficking by supporting Children of the Night.
  5. Looking for something to do December 10th?  Look no further.  Buy your tickets for Charity Water’s Charity Ball right here.
  6. Speaking of kids… this one won’t even cost you any money.  Become a Big Brother or Big Sister.
  7. If you’re in New York, Darling is offering 25% off purchases (and trust me, it lives up to the name).
  8. Another one for the kids: Petit Organics is offering 25% off all orders today!
  9. Shop Alex and Ani today and get 10% off of your entire purchase.
  10. Kill two birds with one click.  Shop and support a great cause with rad apparel from TWLOHA (To Write Love on Her Arms).

Now, if you’ll excuse me I have some pie to polish off.



Real People, Real Style: Bikini Babe

By |November 9th, 2011|Real People Real Style|

Several months ago, I introduced you to the ridiculously fun and totally customizable bikini brand, Mikini Bikini.  The line was a big hit with you lovely ladies, so I asked the beauty behind the brand if she’d like to let us in on her own personal style secrets.  Lucky for us, she obliged and now the bikini babe (and newlywed) is gonna share what makes her style so chic.

Name: Christina Iaquinta Stuber

Wearing:  Club Monaco dress (bought this for my wedding shower – it’s my wedding colors, grey and yellow!), Lucky boots from TJMaxx (Found these last month and have probably worn them 5/7 days each week!), Crossbody from Banana Republic (“just because” gift from husband when we first started dating 5 years ago – I still love it!) Rhinestone necklace from Pinky Otto (gift from my Momma).

Occupation: Co-Founder of Mikini Bikini, Buyer for TJMaxx and Marshalls

Hometown/Current Town: Hometown: Bridgeport, WV; Current Town: Boston, MA

1. I would describe my style as: Casual luxury.  I dress how I feel, and a lot of my pieces come with a story or memory!

2.  I can’t leave the house without: RayBans and my wedding ring.

3. Based on wardrobe alone, if I could live in any time period, it would be: The 60’s would be amazing – mini skirts, skinny jeans, and fake eyelashes, what more could you want?

4. Best/biggest splurge (worth every penny): I try to find good deals on every-day wear, and tend to splurge on my more “timeless” pieces.  My biggest splurge this year was actually for my husband – a Breitling Navitimer  watch.

5. Best fashion advice I’ve ever received: If you wouldn’t wear it in front of your father, then don’t wear it!

6. Biggest fashion pet peeve (a trend that just needs to go away): High-waisted jeans.

7. What I would tell my 13 year old self: Oh geez – I only can pick one thing?! Some of the items I wore were just absurd.  Like a mini skirt that was cow print, or these knee high boots that looked like moon shoes.. and I had this belly chain that I thought was really cool.  Even formals, I wore 2-piece dresses!  I’d do it all again though – you have to experiment in order to find your true style later on.

8. Weirdest beauty trick that I swear by: I sleep with my hair in a high bun.  When I take it down in the morning, it has lots of volume!

9. Don’t care if it ever goes out of style, I’m going to keep wearing: long hair, ha!  I’ve never had my hair shorter than shoulder length.

10. I would love to trade closets with: Lauren Conrad

Fun fact: Red cups from Starbucks make me ridiculously happy!

Now go customize your very own Mikini Bikini for your next “escaping the arctic” trip.



Photo courtesy of UbranoPhoto

WhyDid Spotlight: Not Your Bikini, It’s Mikini.

By |March 9th, 2011|Why Did You Wear That?|

Anyone who knows me (or follows WhyDid) knows how much I love bikinis!  I have quite a collection for a girl who lived in New York City and a two hour drive from the  closest beach for the last five years.  I probably single handedly supported my own department when I was in charge of buying swimwear for Bendel’s.

So, I was especially thrilled to have the chance to interview Christina Iaquinta and Sean Stuber about their newly launched bikini line and website, Mikini.  Why so excited, you ask?  Well, other than the standard swimwear obsession and the cutting edge HTML5 website, Christina is a fellow WVU graduate and sorority sister.  See?! We did more than just party in Morgantown!  I am not only proud of her, but I’m seriously impressed by her swimsuits.

I’ve seen just about every bikini out there, so when I visited Mikini’s site, I was pleasantly surprised.  You can basically live out your swimwear designer dreams since you are in charge of mixing shapes, fabrics, lining, and trim into any configuration you please.  They have taken mix and match to the next level.  I would be willing to be there’s as many combinations as a Rubik’s cube!

Alright, enough about my swimwear psychosis.

Who’s behind Mikini?

My fiancé, Sean Stuber, and I started this process about 3 years ago now. We kept it just between us to start so it could truly develop into what we envisioned and decided to launch the website earlier this year. We have always been intrigued with entrepreneurship and supporting local businesses – We’ve been working with a local website developer in Boston and our models and photographer are hometown/local friends.

How did you get into the bikini biz? Is this always something that you wanted to do?

I’ve always loved swimwear and could eat, sleep, and work on the beach! I wanted to create fun, flirty, boutique style swimwear. Sean wanted to run an internet-based business so we merged the two. We both have backgrounds in retail which has proved to be extremely beneficial in developing the products, components and our brand. Mikini allows us to fulfill our passions but also considers our future desire to live near the beach!

How did you come up with the name Mikini?

Sean and I still debate this question! I’m pretty sure it was me, but he’s pretty sure he came up with the name! ha! Either way, it was definitely on a road trip from Boston to New York City fantasizing about our future together back in early 2008. The name Mikini evolved from the uniqueness and individuality of the offering itself; quite literally, “my bikini.”

Obviously, the shopper is in ultimate control of what her Mikini will look like, but how did you decide on the prints and silhouettes offered?

With the prints, it’s personal tastes and trends. We also attempt to select fabrics that work with each other to a certain extent as well – we want to create bikini “collections” for our customers similar to what they have in their every day closet… Tops and bottoms that they can truly mix and match depending on their mood and atmosphere. That’s one point of difference with our site – You can select multiple fabrics within one top or bottom and just keep adding new styles to create a full collection that reflects your personal taste.

As for the silhouettes, we wanted to launch with very “classic” styles. Co-founding the company with a male helps bring a completely different eye to the cuts and fabrics which I find refreshing.

Do you plan on expanding into more styles? Perhaps coverups and accessories in the future?

We have pages and pages of ideas for the future! In short, yes to more styles, yes to more fabrics, yes to more linings, yes to accessories! WhyDid will be the first to know when a new product comes out!

Who is the Mikini Girl?

The “Mikini Girl” is ambitious, fashionable, indulgent and social. She values her style and personal tastes.

Shopping for a bikini can be brutal for women. What advice would you give in picking out the right suit for you?

I’ll take this one, Sean =) The best advice I can give as far as cuts go would be to utilize different aspects throughout our website. Fit is really obviously important in swimwear – We have lots of pictures on our website to show the fit of each suit through the “view on model” link for each style. We are also constantly adding information/pictures/videos to our blog that shows different angles of each style. Lastly, if a customer still has questions, we have a Live Chat where we can chat directly! Something I should also add for the readers is that we do allow exchanges for size.

What’s the biggest mistake women make with their swimwear?

I’d have to go back to fit on this one.

Any swimwear pet peeves?

Showing up to the beach when someone else has your bikini on! One of the main reasons we started Mikini – we want our customers to create buzz and let people wonder where they found something so unique.

Your favorite vacation spot:

We are willing to bet our favorite vacation spot is going to be Bora Bora, where we are honeymooning this August! For now though, we’ll go with Ibiza off the southern coast of Spain. We vacationed in Portugal and Spain this past summer – the beaches in Ibiza are breathtaking and have so much energy!

Beach bag essentials:

The biggest beach towel I can find, iPod, magazine, notepad (we are constantly writing to-do lists), camera, raw almonds, fruit (Sean’s obsessed), Burt’s Bees, & Ray Bans. Great question – we are heading to Ft. Lauderdale this weekend and I need to pack! Ha!

Favorite beach read:

We both love Inc. Magazine. Useful links/advice for entrepreneurs and really motivating stories. I’m currently hooked on all things wedding related!

Polka dots or stripes?

I adore polka dots! I just made a purple polka dot bikini last night!

Check out my beach bound bikini creation here (guess I’m a stripes girl) and get your cute buns over to MikiniBikini.com and start designing your very own!