An Oscar Worthy Desk

While a heart of gold is something to admire in the rest of the world, in Hollywood it’s all about the gold statue – winning an Oscar is the pinnacle of success in The Golden State.  So let’s look at how the gold Academy Award can be reflected in gold accessories for the work-desk where we all want to succeed.

For every Oscar-nominated film, there’s a corresponding desk accessory to consider.

1.   Gone With the Wind. Nothing will be blown away by the wind if you get these adorable paperclips by Kate Spade.

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2.   The Razor’s Edge.  This elegant peacock letter opener from Jonathan Adler is far superior in function and looks than any ordinary razor’s edge opener. I have this at home and it looks beautiful by itself on the entryway console.

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3. The Hours. Opt for a traditional clock with a feminine, whimsical edge.

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4. Cleopatra.  Not only is this snake a fun talking-point, but it’s a magnifying glass for those times you don’t want to reach for your reading glasses but can’t read the fine print.

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5. The Sound of Music. Dock your iphone or iPad on this gold accessory and listen to your music, or just charge your gadget, all with elegance.

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6. Silver Linings Playbook. OK, so this Kate Spade one is lined with gold polka-dots, but it can still serve as your work-notebook for all your ideas.

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7.  Letters from Iwo Jima. From seeJanework.com comes this letter holder with an ampersand, heart or dots imprinted in gold.

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8. The Reader.  For the readers out there (and aren’t we all?!?) these gilded rock bookends are from Z Gallerie.

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9. On Golden Pond. This S’well gold water bottle will look elegant on your desk while it reminds you to stay hydrated.

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10.  And don’t forget Chocolat.  These chocolate truffles covered with edible gold and housed in an office-serious wooden box are the icing on the cake so to speak.

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No one wins every time, but at least you can always feel like a winner when you surround yourself with touches of gold.  And feeling like a winner is half the battle that leads you to success.  Dress your playing field accordingly.


The Armani Hotel, Milan

When I thought of “slipping into Armani,” I used to picture my favorite sunglasses and red lipstick. Now that I’ve stayed at The Armani hotel in Milan, I have an entirely new picture and favorite memory. (Not to mention impossible standards when it comes to future hotel stays.)

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Milan is both host to Milan Fashion Week and Giorgio Armani’s home town which explains both the fact that he’d put his name on a first-class hotel and the fact that it’s on the floors above his flagship superstore.  As anyone familiar with his esthetic can imagine, the hotel mimics the clean, refined lines of Armani’s clothing design.  There is the same serenity paired with attention to detail here at the Armani Hotel that one finds in his classic tailoring.  Picture cool onyx and crisp edges to the furniture.  Toss in hotel employees with impeccable manners and attention to detail and you can understand my enthusiasm. In my dream world I live in his clothes and his hotel year-round.

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If there’s one thing Armani teaches you – both in fashion and in hospitality – it’s that feeling comfortable makes you feel more self-assured.  I felt relaxed everywhere in the hotel – from the entrance to my room to the spa to the store.  But not in a Miami beach way – in a “I don’t have to try too hard or make a grand entrance, because I am confident that I look and feel good.

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At the hotel, no attention to detail is spared. I love how our room had an iPad I could control every.single.thing with, even order room service or ask the concierge a question. Evety single item in the hotel had been thoughtfully designed by Armani specifically so that being at the hotel made you feel like you were a personal guest of Giorgio himself. And I love that they have a pillow menu – because lets face it, most of us have a very specific way of how we like our pillows. With all this attention to detail, It was very very hard indeed checking out of the hotel when we did.


Below are some of photos I took in and around the Armani hotel


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One of the other perks of staying here is access to an Armani makeup artist, a personal shopper to help you out shopping if the two stories of Armani clothing on the first two floors ovewhelm you, and of course, priority reservations at both the Bamboo Lounge and Bar as well as the Michelin starred Ristorante Armani. During  the time i was at the hotel, there were lines outside the hotel entrance to go into bar and I have to admit I felt a little bit smug as I skipped passed the long lines of beautiful people as the doorman waved us inside with a “Ahh, welcome back madam.”

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And then there is the spa …   

Housed on the top floor of the building, it’s the only soaking pool I’ve seen with floor-to-ceiling louvered windows and roof which make you feel as though you’re outside gazing at the spectacular view and the sky at the same time.  While some might gravitate to the 24-hour gym to burn off that second helping of bucatini, I opt for the less strenuous approach – a sauna and a body wrap.  Well, my personal spa coach told me it was just as good for me as working out.  Or at least that’s what I think she said – my Italian may not be great.  But the experience certainly was.

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CREATING OUTFITS DISSECTED: CURATE!

Affluence in the face of the growing global economic troubles of the world seems cruel and unnecessary. This is why more and more people – even die-hard fashionistas, for example – are now recalibrating their sense of style. It’s no longer about the “it” bag or this season’s trendiest shoes. It’s about looking good without spending too much.

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Being money-savvy is attractive.  These days, it’s about recalibrating your priorities. It isn’t not cool to be selfish – at all. This latest economic downturn has led a lot of people to rethink their priorities. Now, it’s not enough that you provide for yourself. You have to think about how your actions and affect the people around you. That is is why you see the fashionable set becoming more socially conscious and aware of how their buying choices affect the world.

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It’s no longer cool to be spending way too much. In fact, in-your-face opulence can be a turn- off. Instead, you get points for being very conscious of how the world works and how your actions can affect the planet’s ecological balance. You now know why the Prius is a much smarter choice over some gas guzzling muscle car. It’s cool to be aware, rather than to be blindly and mindlessly chasing after ever- changing fashion trends.

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FINALLY – Runway Looks We Can Wear To The Office

Looks From The Banana Republic NYFW 2016 presentation:

Form should always follow function and Banana Republic holds true to this mantra by presenting us with perfectly tailored ready to wear pieces during New York Fashion Week Fall/Winter 2016. From sleek trousers to cashmere sweaters, tailored coats, bright blazers and textured turtlenecks, their array of colorful clothes paired with bold patterns and textures definitely leave more than just a lasting impression– it is the must-have RTW collection of the season!

Here’s my favorite looks that would be perfect outfits for work from Banana Republic’s NYFW Fall/Winter 2016 Collection :

1. This chic yet comfortable turtleneck poncho layered onto a black and white striped long-sleeved top and paired with cigarette pants is perfect for the smart contemporary office. A classic striped clutch and black heels completes the look. Saunter into work on  Monday looking like this and its a work-week slam dunk.

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2. For a classic yet modern office look I love the blues in this outfit. The deep sapphire blue blazer looks amazing with other shades of blue here, or with other neutrals you would likely have in your closet. And if you can wear it with almost anything else in your wardrobe, isn’t that an investment?

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3. Feeling a little femme fatale-ish? 50 Shades of Grey is not exactly office appropriate but wearing different shades of this classic neutral is always a good idea. Banana Republic gives us ample options  from the deepest charcoals to the lightest smokey shades. I especially love the fact that because of grey’s muted tones here, The fur cardigan, leather gloves and pointed clogs in black gives the look just enough edge.

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4. Almost the weekend, but you’re filled with meetings? Well secretly enjoy making an entrance to your appointments with chic ensembles like the ones below. The best thing is they look modern, yet still classically tailored that they would last you a few seasons. That is if Banana Republic doesn’t come up with yet more gorgeous coats for their next FW season.

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5. Casual Fridays is finally here! Add some color to celebrate – I LOVE the mustard yellow blazer and distressed boyfriend jeans and lets not even talk about that brown leather jacket in the background.

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So the question is – should I switch my king-size bed for a twin bed in my bedroom so
I can have more space for all this fabulousness?

PS: Thank you Gina Doost for attending the NYFW Banana Republic FW16 show for me.


Success in Stilettos : Shirley Yang

The Ambitionista is proud to feature Shirley Yang, Vice President of Social Strategy at StyleHaul​ Founder of SOFFICI, a fashion for philanthropy brand among our #SuccessInStilettos Series. Get some insights on a day in the life of a certified girl boss, pursuing her passions with her new line of luxury bag accessories while running strategy for one of the leading Style networks.

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What Is Your Work Wear Go To?

“I like to wear dresses, a form fitting dress, preferably black. The material is key. Winter time I add a fur vest, summer time I wear a light blazer outside of the dress.”

How do you stay sane and on top of it? 

“Deep breaths and good bedtime reading.”

Which women do you admire in your life? 

“Too many. I admire women who are brave, kind, and authentic.”

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What ​are​ your Everyday Favorite Beauty Products?

“My regular routine is good moisturizer. I also LOVE jojoba oil for good hair.”

What do you splurge on? 

“Good shoes and good food.”

What did you want to do when you grow up? 

“Inspire as many people as I can. Leave the world a better place – that’s the Millennial in me talking.”

What was the biggest obstacle you have faced that in the end helped you?

“I’ve had people try to put me down in the past, it definitely made me stronger. It is very true what they say, I want to look back and thank them.”

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What does success mean to you?

Success means balancing the Science of Achievement and the Art of Fulfilment. It’s when I do things larger than self and and inspire others to also be successful.”

If you could meet a younger you from 10 years ago, what would you have told her? 

“Don’t worry so much, get more sleep.”

What Is One Activity That You do Everyday without fail?

“Hug and kiss my little chihuahua.” 

What Is Your Favorite Quote?

“Chance favors the prepared mind, the more you practice, the luckier you become”

– Richard Branson