Next to putting on a lipstick, having polished and lacquered nails seems to be the next best thing to feeling dressed when you're in a hurry and on a budget.  The sight of manicured fingers and pedicured toes is always a morale-booster and eye-candy at the same time. 

Is it any wonder that nail spas and salons are mushrooming everywhere when it's both a guilty pleasure and an art all by itself. 

I had the pleasure of enjoying a thoroughly relaxing afternoon at Pamper Your Feet, a newly opened nail spa that easily and delightfully lived up to its name. 

Its lime green walls and black leather easy chairs give it a dark, edgy look but also a cocoon-like ambiance that embraces you and relaxes you, settling you down and away from the heat outside.  Cool samba music wafts softly as you sink into your chair. 

The nail technicians come and do their job quietly, efficiently, proficiently.  The atmosphere is professional and informal at the same time.  It's a world away from the neighborhood parlor of the past with its in-your-face music, frenetic frenzy buzzing around you, and loud chattering voices of haircutters and tv denizens alike competing for attention.

I get a Pamper Me Foot Spa.  It puts me in such a good mood I opt for a hot pink nail color.  I have to say that Pamper Your Feet has stamped its mark on what pampering is all about and their nail work is excellent.  Three weeks later, my toes are still as attractively colored as the day I stepped out of their spa.

It is a relatively new nail spa so it is understandably putting its best foot forward so to speak. This early, the shop deservedly has garnered its fair share of clients and will continue to do so if they maintain this level of standard. 

Pamper Your Feet

"Fashion fades.  Only style remains," so says Coco Chanel, the eternal diva of style.  And when one who has faded from the fashion scene to raise a family decides to come back to embrace its lifestyle once more, a thriving business is born.

Sheila Amora, mother of two, former commercial model, and now savvy businesswoman and proprietress, has gone back to the fashion world she left behind and put up Funky Plum, a vintage clothes shop that has caught the avid attention of many women--from 16 to the ever-young -ty somethings--since she opened her doors just over a month ago.

With a supportive hubby and two pretty daughters behind her in her new venture (who help mommy in the store), she attends to her clients, personally looking after them.  It's all part of her vision "to bring their zest for fashion back to life by introducing them to their own individual style. It's all about creating their own set of fashion rules to tailor-fit their  lifestyle."

"Funky plum," she explains, "would like to offer every woman a chance at bringing out her best through the services we offer:  One-on-one styling services; one-on-one make-over sessions (where we teach you basic make-up tricks); wardrobe consultancy services (we look through what you already have in your closet and help you mix and match).  We can even re-work, re-invent, and alter pieces you already have to make them look more pleasing to you.  We also custom-make clothes from casual wear to formal wear."

Fashion, she notes, is constantly evolving, which has its pitfalls.  "Many women," she observes, "get lost in translation due to the various trends and fashion rules they feel they need to keep up with. Due to all the pressure brought about by the cruel rules of fashion matched with the daily pressures of their everyday lives, they choose to let go."

Uh, I can definitely relate to that.  Some days, I wake up feeling like a queen with nary a care in the world and other days I wake up feeling like the world has descended upon my shoulders. But didn't I just read in the news the long-overdue admission that women can't have it all?  It's a truism that Sheila understands and infuses into her business philosophy.

"Our thrust is to make women of any age, shape, or size feel wonderful about themselves when they wear our clothes and not be limited by the dictates of fashion. Every woman has the potential of looking their best without having to follow every latest trend. A woman just has to know what looks good on her and work from there," offers Sheila who's own style looks enviably effortless, making her her own best advertisement. 

I only have to look at her to see that she lives and breathes the essence of Funky Plum, an individualistic style that highlights  each woman's personality and brings out her hidden fashion sense.

Where does she get her clothes?  "We source designer mod vintage clothes for everyday wear," she answers.  "We make sure that every vintage piece we have is stylish, of very good quality, and suitable for women of all ages.  We have one-of-a-kind pieces that range from extra small to extra large from casual wear to formal wear so that we make sure that we can cater to the needs of any woman of any shape and size.

"All our pieces are dry-cleaned and/or hand-washed, depending on the fabric; we ensure that all our items are fresh-smelling and ready to use. We also offer alteration services on our one-of-a-kind pieces." 

Funky Plum also designs its own casual to formal wear and has its own line of vintage-inspired pieces.  Its own designs extend to one-of-a-kind accessories to match every outfit in the store.  To finish off the look, it additionally sells pre-loved designer bags and shoes.

All in all, Funky Plum is a heady mixture of irresistible products and pampered services, all housed in a one-stop shop for women on-the-go who've no time to browse the malls, and run by a vivacious, stylish woman who lives by the philosophy of Coco Chanel.

It's a potent combination sure to help any woman look good.

Funky Plum Alterations and Vintage Clothing Store