United Nude Shoes

Shoes Inspired by architecture

United Nude uses 3D printing and creative design to reinvent shoes.  Styles range from ready to wear to avant garde.

Step Mobius Chelsea United Nude | TheLuxicon.co
This ready to wear wedge bootie is easy to incorporate into daily style and adds an element of surprise. Step Mobius Chelsea $350 Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com
spring-eros United Nude | TheLuxicon.co
Funky bootie will elevate a basic outfit. Wear it with basic black skinny pants and a solid top for a fun kick or if your daring, throw in pop of print. Spring Eros $249 Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com
United Nude Nova Shoe | TheLuxicon.co
The United Nude Nova Shoe $2000, limited addition, avant garde . Not for the faint at heart! I actually own a shoe from United Nude that has a similar silhouette and I can honestly say that they are no more difficult to walk in than any other heel. Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com
lula-united nude | TheLuxicon.co
This fun take on a bootie strongly represents the architectural inspiration. Lula $699 Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com
Lo Res Lo United Nude | TheLuxicon.co
Lo Res Lo flat in gold chrome is one of my favorites. Offered in multiple colors, there is surely one for you. Who says flats have to be basic?! Lo Res Lo flat $300 Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com
Iris Van Herpen United Nude Crystallization | TheLuxicon.co
Iris Van Herpen for United Nude created this “Crystallization” bootie. We love Iris at the Luxicon. Sleek symmetric lines bring excitement to any look. Available in multiple colors. Crystallization $995 Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com
Iris Van Herpen United Nude Biopiracy Bootie | TheLuxicon.co
The ultimate futuristic avant garde beauty of a bootie. Be bold and feel fierce when you step out in the Biopiracy Bootie $995. Photo Credit: UnitedNude.com

I think every woman can relate to the feeling you get when you put on a great pair of shoes.  Shoes can make you feel like you are ready to take on the world.  They can inspire an entire outfit.  Have fun with your shoes.  I love United Nude because for their variety of price point as well as styles.  Even if I wouldn’t buy or wear a certain style, I very much applaud the creative genius behind them.

Cheers to your next great shoe experience!

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Chicago Architecture Tour

If you get the chance to visit Chicago, I recommend taking a sunset architecture tour by boat.  Since my husband is from Chicago, we’ve been many times and always wanted to do the boat tour.  We finally made it and it was sensational!

The tour begins right by Trump Tower.  If you go early, you can hang by the dock and watch the water taxis pass.

Chicago Water Taxi | TheLuxicon.co
Chicago water taxi.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
And we’re off!
Trump Tower | TheLuxicon.co
Trump Tower
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
333 West Wacker Drive. This Building’s postmodern facade was designed to mimic the the river which shines green from algae.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Merchandise Mart. Art Deco Building which began as a wholesale warehouse and is currently a designer showcase venue.
Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Aqua Tower’s balconies were designed to look like water dripping down the sides of the building. This is also where we stayed this last trip and it was a glorious hotel. The interior is just as interesting as the exterior. Photo Credit: Chicago Architecture Foundation.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Lake Point Tower stands furthest West of all buildings. It is a residential building designed to give all units an unobstructed 180 degree view.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Port that allows boats in and out of the lake at scheduled times and is otherwise used for larger boats to turn around.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
300 S Wacker building facade was redone to include giant mural of a map of the Chicago River. That bright spot in the middle represents a pin in the location of the building.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Spectacular views of the sunset.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Back at Trump to finish off the tour.
Chicago Architecture Tour | TheLuxicon.co
Sunset boat rides couldn’t possibly be more romantic. Thanks for planning this wonderful excursion my love!

I hope you get the chance to experience this tour first hand!

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Contouring Tutorial

MAKE-UP MONDAY IS HERE!

Today we tackle contouring!

Contouring Guide Before Photo | TheLuxicon.co
Before…
Contouring Guide | After Photo | TheLuxicon.co
After…

I use this picture as a general guide for contouring.  Follow along as I show you how I add shadow and highlighter to give my face dimension.

Contouring Guide | Tutorial on TheLuxicon.co
Contouring Guide I found on Pinterest.

As promised, use this contouring guide by face shape to perfect your look.

Make-up is hard, so if you have any questions let me know and I’ll do my best to answer them.

Just for fun, check out this Amy Schumer video poking fun at the social expectations placed on women.

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Rent the Runway Success

Last weekend I went to a semi-formal outdoor wedding.  I wasn’t entirely sure what to wear, so I jumped on Rent the Runway.

If you haven’t heard of RTR, be sure to check out my previous post, Rent the Runway.  I recommend renting for any event that you may not re-wear your attire.

I found this beauty for $60…

Jill Jill Stuart East Side Jumpsuit on Rent the Runway | TheLuxicon
Jill Jill Stuart East Side Jumpsuit.

The color is chic and sophisticated while the silhouette is more casual.

Jill Jill Stuart East Side Jumpsuit on Rent the Runway | TheLuxicon

Given that I’m short, I went with a heel to make the jumpsuit fit better and to give the illusion of height.  I did have to turn the hem under once with hem tape, but if you press the hem and use small pieces all around the hem, it’s pretty well concealed.

Jill Jill Stuart East Side Jumpsuit on Rent the Runway | TheLuxicon
Bold, violet, Prada sunglasses channel Jackie-O for a sophisticated elegance.

I ordered it in two sizes just to be sure (RTR allows you to do that for free).  The fit was perfection.

The torso length is the hardest part of a jumpsuit to fit from person to person.  This one fit me very well, so I can imagine that since I’m 5’1″ it may not fit tall girls very well.  Reading the reviews on RTR is crucial.  I saw that most short girls said it fit, so I went for it.  If you have a few days to spare before your event, get the outfit early and if it doesn’t work, RTR will get you a new selection overnight.

Jill Jill Stuart East Side Jumpsuit on Rent the Runway | TheLuxicon

The Blooming Bud Necklace absolutely made the outfit.   I rented it on Rent the Runway as well.

Lele Sadoughi Blooming Bud Necklace on Rent the Runway | TheLuxicon.co
Lele Sadoughi Blooming Bud Necklace $60

The Marble detail have a luxurious appearance.

Lele Sadoughi Blooming Bud Necklace | TheLuxicon.co
Lele Sadoughi Blooming Bud Necklace

The Marble details also complimented my marble nails.

Marble Nails | TheLuxicon.co
Marble Nails- done with sharpie markers. Michele watch.
Louboutins | TheLuxicon.co
Love those Louboutins!  Prada wallet with removable chain.

Be inspired to do something a little different for your next formal event!

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Date Night with Kora Rae and Asilio

Date Night should be daring

Kora Rae Mesh Top with Asilio Pant
The pops of color add a chic, whimsical element to an otherwise all neutral ensemble.

The black, Kora Rae “Lorena” top pictured above is made of two layers of mesh to give a luxurious fullness to the texture.  Up close, if you look directly at the two layers of mesh, you will see dimension that isn’t apparent from afar.

The Luxicon wearing Kora Rae mesh top with Asilio vegan leather pant
Note the dimension of the mesh against the chartreuse bandeau top, Nordstrom.

Leather trim on the top feel soft and healthy.

Kora Rae
Sometimes the out-takes are the best takes.

Let’s talk about these super glam pants- Asilio “On The Run” pant in black!  The high waist gives the illusion of long legs. Black pants paired with a nude or black heel elongate legs even further.  I stand tall at 5’1″ and I use all the tricks in the book to look like those long-legged fashion models.

Asilio
Asilio “On The Run” pant in vegan leather.

The looser hip width on front of the pants gets away from the tight “legging like” appearance that so many slim fit pants have, while the overall fit is still fairly tight and flattering.

Asilio
Asilio “On The Run” pant in black vegan leather paired with nude Christian Louboutin Pumps.
Prada Wallet with Removable Chain and Loubs
Prada wallet with removable chain.

This Prada wallet with removable chain has to be one of the best purchases I’ve made to date.  Throw in a lipstick and cell phone and I’m ready to go!  I never forget which purse I left my ID in if I can keep it in my wallet.  It’s a great purchase no matter what brand you go with.

Accessories to die for on theLuxicon.co
No outfit is complete without great accessories!

Photoed above: marble nails done by yours truly; Bound Cuff Bracelet from The Haute Pursuit; Michele Watch, Lotus Ring and Prada wallet.

Hope this inspires your next date night.  Take a risk and own it!logosmallest

My Custom Engagement Ring

I struggled to find an engagement ring that would be unique to me.  Everything I saw had been done before, so I decided to do it myself.  Designing my ring myself was a wonderful experience.  Prior to this massive project that I would wear for the rest of my life, I had no design experience.  I want to walk you through the process and perhaps open you up to the idea of doing it yourself.

I fell in love with a band I found that had cross hatched diamonds in a sort of weave pattern.  I loved this idea for the look and the symbolism.

I began drawing and I was less than impressed with my non-existent skills… so I found a CAD jewelry designer.

He made a  rendering of the band I had drawn, with a center diamond.

The first of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co
The first rendering was entirely more masculine than I had imagined.

The first of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co The first of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co

Ok, so back to the drawing board.  How do I break up the large band?

Two bands?

The second of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co
Looking a little more like a ladies ring!

The first of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co The first of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co

It just isn’t quite right yet.  I liked smaller round diamonds that the first ring had, for a daintier look, so I asked if we could replace some of the baguettes.

The third of many renderings until I landed on the perfect ring | TheLuxicon.co
That’s not really the look I was going for. Yikes, how do I get back on track?

I liked the cathedral settings and the idea of nesting the wedding band inside the engagement ring.  I combined all the things I liked to come up with this beauty.

CAD Rendering of my wedding ring | TheLuxicon.co
The one!
CAD Rendering of my wedding ring | TheLuxicon.co
I love that the inside ring is set lower and can be seen beneath the center stone.
CAD Rendering of my wedding ring | TheLuxicon.co
The Floating Stone has to be one of my favorite design elements.

Custom Engagement RingCustom Engagement Ring

After all of the changes were finalized, a silver and cubic zirconia ring was created for the ultimate final approval.  My husband approved the silver ring because we were traveling and he had worked it out with the jeweler so that I would think I needed to approve it after traveling.  He popped the question on our India trip and totally surprised me.  So sneaky!

My Actual Ring | TheLuxicon.co
The actual ring.
My Wedding Ring | TheLuxicon.co
Separated view.
My Wedding Ring | TheLuxicon.co
I may one day have it fused, so it doesn’t come apart. The purpose would be to remove the support bar on the side to reveal the side view of the floating diamond.

Not only did I enjoy the process, I had no idea how special it would be to have a ring that I created.  My husband’s encouragement was instrumental in this process from beginning to end.  Every time someone comments on my ring, I text him a ring emoticon and he texts me back a thumbs up.  I’m sure we will do this forever.

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Kauai by Sea

Napali Coast

Breathtaking Views

St. Regis Resort Kauai
St. Regis Resort, Kauai
Napali Coast
Unseasonably calm waters made for a glassy appearance of the ocean which beautifully reflected the sky.
Napali Coast- Cathedral Rock Formations
Napali Coast- Cathedral Rock Formations
Napali Coast Cathedral Rock Formations
Napali Coast Cathedral Rock Formations
Napali Coast- Cathedral Rock Formations
Cathedral Rock Formations
Napali Coast Cathedral Rock Formations Cove
Just inside the Cathedral Rock formations is a cove with a rock that stands above the water-level in the center. Couples get married standing on this rock with their guests afloat around them.
kauai waterfalls
beautiful waterfalls
kauai waterfalls
Waterfalls everywhere
King Kong Beach
Beach location where King Kong was filmed
Kauai Napali Coast
Enjoying the view.
Vitamin A Swimwear
Shop Vitamin A Swimwear
Napali Coast
Napali Coast
Napali Coast
Napali Coast, Kauai
Kauai Dolohins
Saying hello to a family of Dolphins,  I’m wearing Vitamin A Swim.
Dolphins, Kauai
Aloha, Dolphins!
Kauai Snorkel
swimming with fish

Kauai
Gorgeous Views
Kauai
Snorkel fun!
Snorkel Selfie
Aloha! Snorkel Selfie

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Inspiring Designer of the Week- Paul Andrew

Paul Andrew won the CFDA Fashion Fund 2014 Competition.

Paul Andrew Designing His Collection By Hand | TheLuxicon.co
Paul Andrew Designing His Collection By Hand   (Photo Credit: @Paulandrew Instagram)

Paul Andrew uses the finest resources in Italy for crafting his shoes.

Paul Andrew's Zenadia Pump in Nude | TheLuxicon.co
Zenadia Pump in Nude (Photo Credit @paulandrew Instagram)

His shoes aren’t just beautiful.  The judges pressed him to answer the question, “What makes your pump different from the others we’ve seen?”  He explained that he not only uses the finest materials and craftsman, he has researched what makes a pump comfortable and incorporated this data into the making of his shoes.

I think we have all had that one pair of pumps that we could wear anywhere and when they finally bite the dust, it’s so painful to toss them.  I can’t wait to get Paul Andrew’s little lovelies on my feet.  Finally, a designer who cares whether my feet survive a night out!

Paul Andrew's Chrysler Pump | TheLuxicon.co
Chrysler Pump- Inspired by the Chrysler Building in NYC (Photo Credit @paulandrew Instagram)
Paul Andrew's Chrysler Boot | TheLuxicon.co
Chrysler Boot  (Photo Credit @paulandrew Instagram)
Paul Andrew's Athena Gladiator | TheLuxicon.co
My husband can’t wait to get me the Athena Gladiator Sandal.. (Photo Credit @paulandrew Instagram)
Paul Andrew's Uptown Pump | theluxicon.co
Triple dyed sued gives off a more brilliant color. The Uptown Pump. (Photo Credit @paulandrew Instagram)
Paul Andrew's Zoya Flat | Theluxicon.co
He doesn’t just do high heels! Zoya Flat (Photo Credit @paulandrew Instagram)

I’m very excited to see what is yet to come from this emerging designer!

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Kauai By Sky

Doors off helicopter tour

The only way to see Kauai

Majority of the island remains inaccessible by land.  If I remember correctly, 90% of the island is inaccessible.  To much of the rain forest and central parts of the island, there is little or no road access.  Another reason for the inaccessibility is that a lot of the island remains privately owned and is therefore closed to the public.  We did a helicopter tour to capture these spectacular and breathtaking views.

Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
“Doors Off” allowed for unobstructed photography. The clouds in our toes wasn’t bad either. …Yeah my love can rock a Manbun.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Breathtaking start. It’s clear why Kauai is used for the filming of so many movings. Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, The Descendants, Six Days Seven Nights, King Kong… and the list goes on.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Absolutely beautiful.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Napali Coast. The fog seen along the coast is actually salt in the air.  I can still smell it.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Napali Coast.
Photo Aug 25, 12 07 48 PM
Napali Coast. The brown water is from the recent rain. Iron in the rocks gives a reddish brown color and runs down the rock formation into the ocean.

It was actually to our benefit that the island underwent tropical storms in the early days of our trip.  If you look carefully at most of the pictures, you can see multiple waterfalls that were remnants of the recent rains.

Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Napali Coast- Cathedral Rock Formations.  We heard that there is a spot on a beach where couples can get married under the Cathedral Rocks.  How romantic!?
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Waimea Canyon State Park. It was said that early explorers named it Waimea Canyon State Park because the canyon reminded them of the Grand Canyon.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Mount Waiʻaleʻale (the second highest peak in HI) rains 350 days a year (average). There are so many waterfalls, that it is known as the Wall of Tears.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Outside of Waimea Canyon State Park
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
More waterfalls.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Just gorgeous.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Are you singing the Jurassic Park theme song yet? Napali Coast is where it was filmed.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
This waterfall is usually a trickle.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Near Mount Waiʻaleʻale (the wall of tears)
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
One of the biggest waterfalls on the island of Kauai. Boys jump off the top of the waterfall as a testament of their manhood when coming of age. Of course it is not usually this robust.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Light rain throughout the tour made flying through clouds extra fun. We could actually feel the rainclouds moving through our toes.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
Celebrities live in this area. We were told Bette Midler, Julia Roberts, and others own homes on this beach.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
By far, the most breathtaking beaches I’ve seen.
Kauai By Sky | TheLuxicon.co
It wouldn’t have been complete without a rainbow!

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Perfect Your Brows Featuring Anastasia Beverly Hills

It’s Make-Up Monday today on the blog and we’re tackling BROWS!!

Let’s face it… it’s hard to get perfect brows.  Follow along for some basics to help you go from basic to chic.

Brow Tuturial (Before Picture) | TheLuxicon.co
Before…
Perfect Your Brows Tutorial | TheLuxicon.co
After…

Products

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Kit 5 Pieces $65

Anastasia Brow Kit
Five-piece kit contains Stencils, Brow Powder Duo; Brush; Precision Tweezers; and Clear Brow Gel. Photo Credit: Anastasiabeverlyhills.com

Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Starter Kit $39.50

Anastasia Brow Kit
Stencils Brow Primer; Highlighting Duo powder; Brow Powder Duo; Brush, and step-by-step instructions. Photo Credit: Anastasiabeverlyhills.com

I mentioned the difference between brow powder and brow pomade.  The Dipbrow Pomade $18  does not need to be set with any sort of gel to hold it in place.  Brow Powder $23 will require it to be set with Brow Gel $22.  You’re in luck though because I found out that clear mascara $5 will do the trick.  Most drugstore brands are around $5.

I also mentioned the Brow Enhancing Serum $38.  From what I have been told, it works well with regular use.  People who tried it, saw drastic results after using it daily for 6 months.  I used it for a few months, but I found that when I stopped over tweezing my brows, they grew in nicely, so I can’t say that I used it for the full 6 months, but based on reviews and research, I would recommend this product.

If you are interested in purchasing the kit items separately, you can do that as well, however, I think the starter kit was a nice introduction to the product line.  I also needed the step-by-step instructions.  The kits come in a variety of colors, so if you’re purchasing online, make sure you get the one that best matches your hair color.  I loved the line for blondes when I was blonde and I have matched both light red and dark red, so I’m confident you can match your color as well!

I am so happy to have found the Anastasia Beverly Hills products.  They have given me much needed direction in the brow department.  I have enjoyed practicing with the stencils and perfecting my make-up techniques.  I also love the videos and pictures they put on Instagram @anastasiabeverlyhills.

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