Wrapped in Beauty

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, beautiful, DVF, Diane von Furstenberg, Wrap Dress

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, beautiful, DVF, Diane von Furstenberg, Wrap Dress

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, beautiful, DVF, Diane von Furstenberg, Wrap Dress

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, beautiful, DVF, Diane von Furstenberg, Wrap Dress

When Diane von Furstenberg told me to stand up and raise my arms above my waist, I was slightly embarrassed, but completely enthralled at the same time. She wanted to teach me the proper way to tie her famous wrap dress. So I, of course, did exactly as the fashion icon ordered. “The Amelia looks really good on you,” she said happily and explained the reason I was styled in the dress.

“I designed it to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the wrap dress,” Diane said proudly, as she ripped the sealed pockets of the frock open. “Has Shireen been gifted this dress?” Diane inquisitively asked her assistant. “No, not yet,” her assistant chirped. “Well then, this is my gift to you,” Diane said matter-of-factly as she reached for my waist. Overwhelmed by her gesture, I mumbled how honored I was and watched as she untied the bow that I had carefully cinched before our interview. 

“All you have to do is tie this one under and this one over. Voila! See, you don’t need a bow. It will stay put, you’ll see.” I nodded vehemently, as she easily corrected something I had obviously been doing wrong for the majority of my adult fashion life. My face flushed with redness; it wasn’t because I was embarrassed, either. 

It was because Diane von Furstenberg, herself, the woman, the designer, the legend, the person who had created this incredibly stylish, beyond beautiful dress had not only generously gifted it to me, but had unpretentiously proceeded to show me the proper way to tie it. Despite having a career jam-packed with celebrity encounters, it was an incredible moment, one that I will never forget. It felt different; special, even. 

Perhaps it was the affectionate fawning she showered over me, the sincerity of it or the fact that we both shared a deep love and passion for fashion. Whatever it was, I held back the tears as the moment unfolded. In her presence, I felt undeniably “Wrapped in Beauty.” Later that day, when I got back to the Deco Drive offices, I tried explaining the encounter to my blog editor, Matthew Auerbach, who I endearingly call Matty.

I didn’t expect him to understand, but he surprised me by replying: “I totally get it; it’s like a Yankees fan getting a batting lesson from Derek Jeter.” I shook my head in total agreement and replied: “Yes, that’s exactly it.” Matty then proceeded to tell me if I didn’t write about the exchange between Diane and myself I’d have to be insane. Actually, I think he said nuts and I definitely don’t want him thinking I’m nuts. 

There are a lot of reasons why DVF, the woman is so special. The magnitude of her individuality and what makes her so appealing is perhaps best explained in her new book “The Woman I Wanted To Be,” a candid and heartfelt memoir about her relationship with her mother (who was a survivor of Auschwitz,) her many lovers and her incredible rise to fame as a fashion designer. 

I sat down with Diane recently at her pop-up store in the Aventura Mall, a beautiful space partially dedicated to her Los Angeles exhibit, “Journey of a Dress” celebrating the 40th anniversary of her famous wrap dress. We talked about her new book, her new reality show and in short, just what an astonishing year it’s been for her.

To read my intimate interview with Diane go to www.wsvn.com or to shop the look featured in the blog go to www.DFV.com

Blog wardrobe provided by www.dvf.com styled by Diane von Furstenberg 
Twitter: @DVF
IG: @DVF
Facebook: DVF – Diane von Furstenberg  

Shireen’s Spotlight: BarMeli Miami

shireen sandoval fashion, fashion blogger, miami fashion blogger, miami fashion, Miami, Restaurant, Fine Dining, Food, Foodie, Spotlight, Shireens Favorite Things, barmeli, fl

shireen sandoval fashion, fashion blogger, miami fashion blogger, miami fashion, Miami, Restaurant, Fine Dining, Food, Foodie, Spotlight, Shireens Favorite Things, barmeli, fl

shireen sandoval fashion, fashion blogger, miami fashion blogger, miami fashion, Miami, Restaurant, Fine Dining, Food, Foodie, Spotlight, Shireens Favorite Things, barmeli, fl

What:BarMeli, 725 NE 79th Street, Miami 33138

Why:I absolutely love and adore my neighborhood hang-out, but keeping it a secret isn’t doing it justice. So, here goes (insert crying emoji here.) Liza, the owner of BarMeli, who by the way is sophisticated, worldly and the best hostess in my hood, says: “It’s the kind of place you go, when you don’t wanna go out.”

The Mediterranean wine bar and tapas-style restaurant has a laid-back attitude mixed with a sweet european charm. Not only is the vino amazing (because Liza searches high and low for the unique and unusual,) its food is amazingly fresh, delicious and healthy. I’m obsessed with several dishes at BarMeli: the whole Mediterranean sardines, the head-on prawns and the grilled octopus, to name three. But it’s the prosciutto-wrapped dates with ricotta that make me weep with happiness. The grilled zucchini salad with feta and mint is a close second.

If you really know me, you know that I’m not a true foodie because of my sensitive stomach, but I know what I like and this small gem is by far one of the best restaurants in Miami and I never leave with a food hang-over.

One more thing: every Thursday night (from 7-9pm) BarMeli has a weekly wine tasting. For $25 you can taste two whites and two reds from the Mediterranean region, paired with yummy tapas. The best part: if you try it and like it, you can buy it, because they sell what they serve. Cheers to that!

Where: BarMeli is tucked away in a small shopping strip on 79th Street. In the last few years, the once business: abandoned road is thriving with all sorts of new shops and restaurants. There’s no valet, but there is a small parking lot right in front of the eatery that’s easy to access. No matter what part of the city you live in, this place is worth the drive, because once inside, your worries will be left behind.

When:Opens at 5pm Tuesday through Saturday

Reservations: 305-308-5253
www.barmeli.com
Facebook: BarMeli Miami Tapas, Wine Bar & Boutique

Editor: Matthew Auerbach
Photo: t4two photography
Producer: Jessie Rosario
Writer: Shireen Sandoval

“Wine is bottled poetry.” Robert Louis Stevenson

Gorgeous Jill and her “One of a kind Jewelry”

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, Jill Zaleski, Jewelry, beautiful

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, Jill Zaleski, Jewelry, beautiful

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, Jill Zaleski, Jewelry, beautiful

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, Jill Zaleski, Jewelry, beautiful

Shireen Sandoval, Shireens Favorite Things, Fashion blog, wsvn, deco drive, photoshoot, Jill Zaleski, Jewelry, beautiful

The sex club was everything I thought it would be: gritty, grimy and borderline gross, but I didn’t let it get to me. When I arrived, no one was having sex, but the way my fashion crew was acting, you would have thought we had been dumped smack dab in the middle of Sodom and Gomorrah. I guess the unspoken mysteries of sex can do that to a person.

The place was touted as a polite swingers club, but with the plastic wrapped mattresses, secluded rooms and one-way glass windows, it screamed unadulterated fornication. I know sometimes fashion can be weird, even sexual at times, but what we were about to do didn’t have anything to do with coitus, copulation or even coupling, for that matter.

We were there to shoot a holiday jewelry campaign with up-and-coming designer Jill Zaleski. Unfortunately, the studio we had booked a few months prior to the collaboration suddenly closed, forcing us to make a last minute, harried location change. I was actually out of town (on another modeling job) when I got news of the cancellation. I had planned on flying back to Miami that night and meeting Jill the next morning, but first she had to make her way from Tennessee.

With her in route and me out of town, I reached out to the photographer shooting the campaign and asked him to save the project. We needed a large space to accommodate a big team, including a camera crew. So, he found one and that’s how we ended up at the sex club. He had a contact who let us set up shop on the club’s expansive dance floor. It wasn’t how I had envisioned it, but it worked and the show went on.

Read the rest of my journey with “Gorgeous Jill and her One of a Kind Jewelry” at www.wsvn.com or shop the look at www.jillzaleski.com.

Blog jewelry provided by: Jill Zaleski ~ One of a Kind Jewelry
Twitter @jillzaleski
IG @JillZaleski
FB Jill Zaleski One of a Kind Jewelry

Blog wardrobe provided by: Hollen & Jen Vintage Showroom
Twitter @Hollenandjen
IG @Hollenandjen
FB Hollen & Jen Showroom

Shireen’s Spotlight: Wynwood Kitchen & Bar

shireen sandoval fashion, fashion blogger, miami fashion blogger, miami fashion, Miami, Restaurant, Fine Dining, Food, Foodie, Spotlight, Shireens Favorite Things, Wynwood Kitchen and bar, FL

shireen sandoval fashion, fashion blogger, miami fashion blogger, miami fashion, Miami, Restaurant, Fine Dining, Food, Foodie, Spotlight, Shireens Favorite Things, Wynwood Kitchen and bar, FL

What: Wynwood Kitchen & Bar, 2550 N.W. 2nd Avenue, Miami, Florida 33127

Why: In honor of Art Basel 2014 (which begins next week,) Shireen’s Spotlight is shining its light on the fun, fabulous and always artistically inspiring Wynwood Kitchen & Bar. The bustling, busy restaurant consists of two large rooms and a massive outside patio area. No matter where you sit, you’ll always have a view of the most beautiful and provocative art the city has to offer. The food is served mostly tapas-style and is best shared with friends.

My favorite is the Ropa Vieja Empanadas; they’re worth every single, delicious, fried calorie. It’s served with an amazing, mouth-watering cilantro cream sauce. The Pork Belly plate is a close second and is served with a healthy lentil salad. WKB has the most spirited, high octane drinks, too. The Wynwood Inferno is by far my favorite. It’s a bold mix of Don Julio Silver Tequila, jalapeño, cilantro, passion fruit and lime juice. Hit this place after your holiday shopping; it’ll keep you in a high-spirited mood all night long.

Where: In the uber-artsy neighborhood of Wynwood. This particular district of Miami  is bursting at the seams with jaw dropping graffiti, provocative museums and dozens of eclectic galleries featuring local, national and world-famous artists.

The restaurant sits proudly on the corner of North West 2nd Avenue, the major road that runs through this inspirational mecca.

Parking gets a bit crowded at night, but there’s a $7 valet just a few doors down. I suggest, though, to take your walking shoes and enjoy the famed “Wynwood Walls” before or after dinner. It’s a fun, romantic and interesting way to check out art and get a bit of exercise.

When: Dinner / Monday-Thursday 5:30pm-11pm, Friday-Saturday 5:30pm-12am the bar is open until 1:00am

Reservations 305-722-8959
www.wynwoodkitchenandbar.com
Twitter: @WKBMiami
IG: @WKBMiami
FB: Wynwood Kitchen & Bar 

Editor: Matthew Auerbach
producer: Jessie Rosario
writer: Shireen Sandoval
photographer: t4two photography

“A picture is a poem without words” – Horace
Now, go be fabulous!

Shireen’s Spotlight: Tamarina

shireen sandoval fashion, fashion blogger, miami fashion blogger, miami fashion, Miami, Restaurant, Fine Dining, Food, Foodie, Spotlight, Shireens Favorite Things, Tamarina, FL

What: Tamarina 600 Brickell Avenue, Miami, Florida 33131

Why: Glamour and sophistication have never tasted so good. Tamarina doesn’t just specialize in Italian Coastal Cuisine, it’s perfected the art of pampering its diners to the “nth” degree. The beautiful, chic, inside/outside restaurant has a warm and rich atmosphere and its food is simple, delicious and clean. I adored the tiger prawn carpaccio. It was so tasty, I was ready for another round. Speaking of…

When you sit at the main bar (they also have a standalone oyster bar and a champagne bar) ask Magic (yes that’s his real name) to make you a dirty martini. It has to be one of the best drinks I’ve ever had in the “Magic” City. It was so smooth, I felt like Marlene Dietrich throwing one back with Gary Cooper in the 1936 movie, “Desire.” This place is regal, romantic and has really great raw fish.

Where: Tamarina is located in Brickell where Lippi used to be. Parking can be a challenge, but on the West and North side of the restaurant, there’s affordable valet.

When: Monday-Friday 12pm-11:30pm, Saturday 6pm-11:30pm/the bar is open until 1am, closed on Sunday.

Reservations:  305-579-1888
www.tamarinamiamirestaurants.com
Instagram: @tamarinamiami
Twitter: @TamarinaMiami
Facebook: Tamarina Miami

Editor: Matthew Auerbach
producer: Jessie Rosario
writer: Shireen Sandoval
photographer: t4two photography

“Champagne makes you feel like it’s Sunday and better days are just around the corner.” Marlene Dietrich

Now, go be fabulous!