Our very own photographer is a talented artist, photographer and painter, and surfer… but she’s also a Leukemia survivor. We made her a dress for a photoshoot in honor of her 13 years being cancer free…
So very proud of her and inspired by her story every day! Vivey for Leukemia (1)

Beauty, Empowering Women, Inspiration, LiveinVivey

Supporting our Friends’ Journey

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Dance Fitness, Ease The Mind, Empowering Women, LiveinVivey, Uncategorized

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Living in Vivey at FlyBarre, Flatiron

Our second stop on the dance fitness tour took us back to the basics. It’s fun to see the rest of the nation is becoming obsessed with barre, so we had to resume our place. There are many derivatives of the Barre Method, but the goal is always the same: we want the long toned lines that we associate with dancers. And because we love a chance to hang with our own brand model, Shay Kostabi, starting with her class at FlyBarre in Flatiron was a no-brainer. My friend Pasha, who is a dancer in his own right, agreed to pay our girl a visit. When he asked what FlyBarre was, I realize now I may have been a  little too vague in my description:

“You know… like a series of conditioning exercises based on ballet barre…” He thought about it, nodded, and in we went for the FlyBarre experience.

When I kept getting evil glares from him between our sweating and low level grunting… I guess I deserved it. To his credit, he totally rocked it and Shay made us laugh through the work and grunting.

PEOPLE: ballet dancers have amazingly toned bodies because they work HARD! I know they make it look soft and easy but all the dancers I know are some of the toughest, strongest and most disciplined/diligent athletes I’ve ever seen.  If you don’t like concentrated and highly intense toning exercises that feel like they will never end, then this is probably not for you. If you like to feel a serious burn… go sign up.

Some notes on the Flybarre Flatiron Studio itself:
Coming from a grimey dance studio background, I was impressed with how polished and cool this space is kept. The reception is very professional, the slate maze-like hallways setup a serious and intense environment. They supply you with towels, water, great bathrooms, lockers; all you could ever expect from a quality studio. Added bonus: right as you finish class theres a clean-up crew that comes in on your heels and leaves the studio wiped down and spotless for the next group. Impressive!

The work is intense but the teachers are inspiring and keep the energy up even when you think you don’t have another leg-lift left in you to give. Shay was invested in our working hard and getting value, which I hear is common for the team here. You know you will work hard, probably suffer a bit, but the hour goes by fast and after it’s over your quickly laughing and enjoying yourself again. Well, until the next day at least…

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West Coast Swing has a lot of NY COOL…

Years ago I saw a video that inspired me for a tango choreography I was building.  Yes, it’s pretty typical to pick inspiration from others. What was special was that I’d never seen this dance before.  At that time I promised myself I would learn West Coast Swing someday (I was living in Buenos Aires and there were no lessons, I checked).

So when I received the “You Should be Dancing” newsletter about their beginner West Coast workshop, I signed up without checking my calendar. The teacher, Ricardo Torres, was warm and adapted his teachings to the group of students who showed. He was very clear about the steps and kept it simple, allowing us to get through a lot in one day.

What can I say about this dance? First, I really don’t understand why more New Yorkers aren’t doing this. Why has this not blown up yet? It is the epitome of ‘cool’ in social dance.. the movements are smooth and subtle but you can play when you want, the music is diverse and jumps from pop, R&B to classic rock. So you’re actually dancing to some of the music you probably listen to.  Seriously NY!! Get into this. I was feeling the movement, the steps, the vibe… but the best part? When I was able to not look down at my feet anymore and look up at my partner, I noticed he had a huge smile on his face, and remembered —

Oh yeeeah... this is what social dance is all about: Enjoying the music, enjoying the stranger in front of you and sharing a smile.

Thanks for the reminder West Coast.  We so often forget how simple joy can be.

If you want to check out any of the great classes at this NY studio, sign up for their newsletter at  http://www.youshouldbedancing.net/index.aspx

For the video that inspired me just get to about 0:52.. you’ll see what I’m talking about.