Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Comfort with Wine and Striped Palazzo Pants.

I am all about a look that's both stylish and comfortable. What more could you want from an outfit? I've been quick to jump on the bandwagon of many comfy-chic trends like the fashion pajama look, leggings in the place of pants, and athleisure wear (some of which were not great in hindsight!).

Palazzo pants are one of the comfy trends I jumped on when it came around a couple of years ago, but today, palazzo pants are coming back in a huge way and having a moment with stripe prints. I tend to stay away from stripes because of the age old misconception that they widen you, but if I learned anything from the hundreds of things I've ever tried on is that one rule does not apply to all!

I think the vertical stripes on a billowy pant leg are actually flattering and very summer in Saint Tropez! I got this pair from TJ Maxx (your girl loves a bargain) and wore it on a mini day trip from LA to the wineries in Temecula. It has a paper bag waist so the level of comfort is way high!

The weather that day was beyond perfect; not too hot and not too cold, just right for a day of sipping on some wine al fresco and taking in the scenery of the beautiful vineyards. I, of course, had to stop at my favorite winery in Temecula, Leoness Cellars, where all of their wines are impeccable. I absolutely recommend the Meritage if you like red wine and the Melange de Blanc if you like white.

My pants were perfect look and feel for that day and that coupled with actually being in the vineyard really took me to a European state of mind.

Similar styles available everywhere!

Forever 21
Net a Porter


Friday, November 3, 2017

Gucci Le Marché des Merveilles Collection

Designer Gucci watches are one of the many designer watches that Levik's Jewelers carries, in fact, we have the largest selection of Gucci watches in the 20 mile radius of our store! With  Gucci being an ever evolving brand, we are very excited about the new vision of Gucci's creative director, Alessandro Michele, and what he has created for this season's new nature inspired collection.

The new collection titled, Le Marché des Merveilles, literally translates to The Market of Wonders, and is very heavily inspired by nature and some of the animals found in it. Its designs are prevalent in Gucci's clothing and handbags, but has also transitioned into their timepieces after receiving so much praise when models wore them in Gucci's runway show during New York Fashion Week. Some of the main inspirations in the collection were drawn from snakes, tigers, and bees (which have now become a Gucci icon!). 

Here are some of the newest pieces from the collection:

The watches were introduced and presented at this year's annual Baselworld international watch and jewelry fair, which is held every spring in the city of Basel, Switzerland. To coincide with the presentation of the new watch collection, Gucci commissioned international artists and meme makers to develop "meme art" featuring the Le Marché des Merveilles pieces. The artists who were chosen are notorious art and meme influencers on Instagram, and they were selected by Alessandro Michele. The images were hashtagged with "#TFWGucci", iterating "that feeling when" Gucci. 

These artists incorporated the new timepieces into their art in a very real and at times comical way. All the artist renderings were bright, colorful, and truly reflected the whimsical new line. With these pieces of meme art, Levik's Jewelers is even more thrilled to carry these one of a kind pieces for our clients!


This piece was created by Taiwan-born, New York–based artist John Yuyi who is known for Face Post, a project that uses temporary tattoos to portray people's social media profiles onto themselves.
Photo via John Yuyi/Gucci Instagram.

This piece is created by Polly Nor, who's art addresses "women and their demons" brought to light by depictions of the devil.
Photo via Polly Nor/Gucci Instagram.

The artist Olimpia Zagnoli used her literal search for an apartment in Milan to create her Gucci inspired art. She features miniature,  imagined properties to go along with the actual listings in her search.
Photo via Olimpia Zagnoli/Gucci Instagram

 Alec Soth, one of America's greatest documentary photographers, captures this moment to document life at its most real level.
Photo via Alec Soth/Gucci Instagram


Ege Islekel is a graphic and interior designer who intertwines images from different eras of art history. In this piece, she overlaps Renaissance art with modern pieces from the Le Marché des Merveilles collection, including the bee watch and snake backpack.
Photo via Ege Islekel/Gucci Instagram

Benjamin Langford uses flowers as a main theme in his artwork and he also uses it here in this piece that mirrors the Arthur fist meme as he is wearing the Le Marché des Merveilles snake watch.
Photo via Benjamin Langford/Gucci Instagram

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Makeup Brush Cleanse.

If you wear make up, you're going to want to read this. This is my personal PSA about the importance of cleaning your makeup brushes regularly! I've fallen victim so some of the plights that come with not cleaning my makeup brushes, so I'm writing this because I really don't want others to have to experience it!

I'm sure most of you avid makeup users/artists already know about this and clean your makeup brushes anyway, but for someone like me who is just getting into doing more elaborate makeup and watching tutorials and using all the brushes in my kit, I didn't realize what happens to not only your brushes but to your skin when you don't wash the brushes regularly.

1. First, and most obviously, your pores could get super clogged up from dirty brushes when they are used over and over again and it could cause some serious breakouts on your face. This is what happened to me and I kept wondering why. The dirt spreads from your face to your makeup and back and forth again! Washing the brushes you use closes some lanes of that bacteria highway from your makeup to your face.

2. Next, it is not unlikely that you could get a staph infection from a dirty makeup brush! Gross. Makeup brushes accumulate oils, dead skin cells, dirt, and bacteria, and that all goes right on your face and into your skin. It is a possibility so its better to be wary of it.

3. It affects the way your makeup turns out on your face! Think about can the brand new pigment you bought look like its supposed to when there are weeks of loose makeup still on your brushes? They blend into other colors and you never get the color you intended to.

4. Aside from breakouts, your skin can get easily irritated from dirty makeup brushes. When dirt builds up on them, they become more abrasive and stiff, which can cause them to be rougher on your skin when used.

5. Brushes that are well taken care of last longer! If you want to save your money in the long run, clean your brushes. A few dirty bristles ruin the whole brush and will need to be replaced faster.

6. You can risk getting wrinkles! Dirty brushes can expose the skin to "oxidative stress", which causes a breakdown of collagen and result in premature aging.

Now that you know why to clean your makeup brushes, I'll share with you how! You really should be doing this every 2 weeks. A lot of makeup brands sell their own brush cleaners like these:

I, personally, like to use Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo. I like that there's more of it in the bottle than the other makeup brush cleansers and I like that the chemical content of it is low. It leaves the bristles on my brushes extremely soft.

I treat the brushes I use for different products separately. I use two different methods: one for my brushes I use with liquid/oily products like foundation and pigments and one for my brushes I use with powder products like eyeshadow and blush.

For liquid/oily product brushes, the leftover makeup really builds a crazy amount. And since it's liquid product, it clings onto the brushes. So to get it all out, I first start by dropping a nickel size drop of olive oil onto a paper towel. Then before the brush even touches water, I rub the brush into the spot of oil on the paper towel and brush it back and forth 4-5 strokes then I continue brushing it on the areas of the paper towel without oil. I repeat this until most of the product is out and when I stroke it on the paper towel, there is not much color coming out of it.

Instead of using a paper towel, you can also invest in a silicone makeup cleanser pad that has ridges that help to get everything out of the bristles. This one, for example, is a really great product:

After I do this, I fill a shallow bowl with lukewarm water, enough so that when you vertically put the brush in it, the metal part of the brush that holds the bristles doesn't get wet. **This is super important! Make sure the metal part holding the bristles doesn't get wet because it causes the glue holding them to wear down and can cause rust on the metal**

So when I fill the dish, I squeeze in 2-3 drops of the baby shampoo. Then I place the brush in the water and swirl it around to mix the shampoo but also it releases the dirt and grime from the bristles. I keep swirling it and stroke the brush onto a clean paper towel and alternate between the two until there is no color coming from the brush.

With the brushes used for powdery products, don't use oil at all! For these, begin by running the brush bristles under lukewarm water to get rid of as much product as you can. Remember again to not let the metal part of the brush touch the water! After this, repeat the same thing as before by placing 2-3 drops of baby shampoo or brush cleanser in a shallow bowl of lukewarm water and swirl each brush in it until the brush comes out clean and doesn't leave residue when you stroke it on a paper towel.

This is all the makeup and dirt that came off one brush, which I use for eyeshadows.

It's wise to dump and refill the water+cleanser solution every so often (maybe like after cleaning 2-3 brushes at a time) so that the excess dirt and makeup doesn't end up back on your brushes.

After you're done cleaning all the brushes, you want to make sure they dry properly and are the same shape as they are started out as. While they are wet, reshape the brushes with your hands to the shape they are supposed to be.

To dry them, place them on a kitchen tea towel in a well ventilated area and place the brushes over the edge so they are sort of hanging. Just like this:

This will give the bristles air ventilation to dry and it won't stay damp and build a funky smell.

I again cannot stress how important cleaning your makeup brushes are! If you can't do it every 2 weeks, at least do it once a month...your skin will thank you, your wallet will thank you!

Monday, November 7, 2016

Wedding Vibes.

This weekend, I was so honored to share in celebrating the wedding of two great people, Nelson and Sherri, who I met through my boyfriend. Being Armenian, most of the weddings I've been to have been Armenian, so I was very thrilled to be able to see the different cultural side of a Chinese wedding. Everything was so beautiful and the food was so good.

Since it wasn't a typical Armenian wedding, I wanted to take a bit of a risk with my dress. I had been eyeing this dress from Lioness for so long, but every time I tried to buy it, it was always sold out! So you can imagine my surprise and excitement when I saw the exact same design ready?...Forever 21! It was in a color I don't usually wear, but I'm all about taking risks in my wardrobe and I think it paid off.

I put this whole look together from head to toe for under $100. The dress from Forever 21 was $30, the choker necklace is from Burlington for $3, which is very similar to this necklace by Jules Smith, my heels are from H&M at $30, and my rings are combinations of baubles I picked up in various stores.

I accentuated my dress with gold details in my look from my necklace to my rings to my nails. P.S. I'm obsessing over my nail color, it's Sally Hansen Miracle Gel in Terra-Coppa.

And what's better to match me in this dress than my handsome man.

Remember that the devil's in the, timepiece, and all.

Friday, November 4, 2016

Sephora Play!

I love subscription boxes and I've tried a few ranging from beauty products to even food. I've tried boxes that deliver healthy snacks, boxes of candy from Japan, and boxes of different hair and makeup products. They were all great, but when I heard Sephora was going to jump on the subscription box train I had to get my hands on it!

Its called Sephora Play! and because Sephora is my favorite place to test out and buy makeup and hair products, I was pretty excited about the news. I had to stand on a waitlist for a while, but I think the option to subscribe is more readily available now.

Like with most subscription boxes, when I signed up for Sephora Play! I had to fill out a quiz asking things like what type of skin I have, the texture of my hair, and my skin tone. I filled out that I have fair skin that's normal to oily and that one of my main desire from skin products was age defying and anti wrinkle creams. Then you get a box filled with Sephora goodies that are tailored to you and what you like. Getting the box in the mail was like an exciting surprise gift.

And when I opened it, it got even better! Here's what I got in my October box...

Nude Stix Intense Matte Lip+Cheek Pencil in Belle
All-In-One Egg Mellow Cream (firming moisturizer)
Smashbox Lip Gloss
Verb Leave In Mist (hair conditioning spray)
Ski Inc. Pure Revival Peel
Tom Ford Orchid Soleil Perfume

The best part of all of this is the card that comes with the box, which you can take to any Sephora store and get a free one to one tutorial on how to use each product!

This is what, in my opinion, sets this subscription box apart from other beauty boxes like Birchbox. And for $10 a month, it is practically a steal! Who wouldn't want this, honestly? And its a great gift to consider giving someone this holiday season.

I absolutely cannot wait for my November Sephora Play! box!

Monday, October 31, 2016

Halloween Treats!

A lot of people know that Halloween is my favorite holiday of the year. I love everything about it from pumpkins to costumes to candy and more, this holiday is so much fun. I went to a few costume parties this weekend, but I'm planning on spending my Halloween watching scary movies and giving trick or treaters candy with some of my friends.

My unicorn pumpkin and my boyfriends driving skeleton pumpkin.

To spice the movie night up, I made a few really spooky treats, because what better way is there to celebrate Halloween than with Halloween themed snacks?

Starting out with these simple take on cheese and crackers with these string cheese witches broom sticks.

I simply took sticks of string cheese and cut each one into 3 equal pieces. Then I cut each piece vertically to look like strands on a broom. Lastly I cut into those pieces twice horizontally to make the piece of cheese look frayed and more like an actual broom. I added a pretzel stick on top for the handle and voila, a broomstick!

The next snack on my party list are these super cute jalapeño popper mummies!

Find this recipe at the bottom of this post.
They're made with roasted jalapeños, cream cheese, cheddar cheese, and olives for the eyes.

Finally I made these adorable and extremely delicious spider cookies! They're basically snickerdoodle kiss cookies, but with a mini Reese's cup instead of a Hershey's kiss. 

Recipe at the bottom of this post.

However you are celebrating today and even if you're not, these snacks can be altered for any occasion. Cook away!

Mummy Jalapeño Poppers


  • Crescent rolls or puff pastry
  • 10 jalapeño peppers halved lengthwise and seeded
  • 8 ounces cream cheese
  • 8 ounces grated pepper jack cheese
  • 1 green onion, finely chopped
  • Black olive slices for eyes
  1. Halve and seed the jalapeño peppers.
  2. Combine the two cheeses and green onions and mix well.
  3. Fill the mixture into the jalapeño pepper halves.
  4. Use a pizza cutter to slice strands of the dough. Wrap the strands of dough around the jalapeños to resemble a mummy. Leave space for the olive eyes.
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes until golden brown.
  6. Remove from oven and immediately press olive slice eyes in the spaces for the eyes.

Spider Snickerdoodle Cookies

  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp milk (I used almond milk)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar (for rolling)
  • Mini Reese's cups, frozen
  • Candy eyes
  • Melting chocolate or frosting in a tube
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a large bowl, beat together shortening, peanut butter, egg, sugar, brown sugar, vanilla, and milk.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, and salt.
  4. Gradually add dry mixture to wet mixture and beat until blended.
  5. Form into 1 inch balls.
  6. Roll in sugar and place a couple of inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet.
  7. Bake 10-12 minutes or until golden.
  8. Immediately, gently press an upside frozen Reese's cup on top of each cookie and move to wire rack to cool.
  9. After placing and moving all the cookies on the wire rack, put in place the candy eyes while chocolate is still slightly soft.
  10. Place in refrigerator for 10 minutes to allow cookies to firm.
  11. Melt chocolate in a bag and cut the corner to pipe the spider's legs on to the cookie. I used frosting in a tube.
  12. Place in refrigerator for 10 minutes to allow legs to set.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Buzz Button.

When you go to a bar, do you peruse menu to find a cool cocktail created by a "mixologist" or do you have a go to cocktail that you always order? I kind of do both, it really depends on my mood, but when I'm in Las Vegas, a culinary creative mecca, I always want to try specialty cocktails that I can't find at home.

One of my favorite bars in all of Las Vegas is the Chandelier Bar at the Cosmopolitan hotel and I'm a big fan of their Bloody Mary, but this past time I was there, I wanted something more fresh and light for a nightcap. I asked the bartender what he could recommend to me and he let me in on a drink that's on their "secret menu". I'm letting you guys all in on the secret, because it's too awesome not to share! And trust me, you will love it.

The drink is called the Verbena and it is only served on the second floor of the chandelier bar. It is a basic margarita, but with a little extra something...a small flower resides on the surface of the margarita and its not just for show. The flower is a Sichuan flower and in the culinary world, its also referred to as a the buzz button.

When he served it to me, the bartender mentioned that this drink came with instructions. The instructions were to drink the margarita and get a good taste of it, then to put the whole flower in your mouth and chew on it for 15-20 seconds making sure to chew on both sides of your mouth and swallow it, and then to finally drink the margarita again. I didn't know what to expect, but I definitely could not have anticipated what happened.

It's called a buzz button for a reason. In the first 5 seconds I began chewing it, my whole mouth started to tingle, then that tingle turned into a prickle, until my whole mouth was buzzing and numb. After I ate the flower, I took another sip of the margarita again and the taste was completely different! I could definitely taste the flavors and ingredients in it a whole lot more, and this is exactly what the flower does. It speeds up your salivary glands and makes you a supertaster. 

Its unlike anything I've every tried and its an absolute must if you're in Vegas! It was so cool that I'm actually considering buying some of those Sichuan flowers and seeing what else it could open my tastebuds up to. But take it from me, this is a drink on a secret menu you'll be happy I told you about.