Ms. Heather Allison Sparks

My Best Friend: Ms. Heather Allison Sparks.

If I had to describe Heather Sparks in 5 words or less, they would be:

Heather has a wall of shoes.

If you were to judge by this phrase alone, you might imagine Heather to own many shoes because she loves a fashion. Although true,  (I don’t know who owns more wedges, Heather or the Bedford cheese shop) its literal intent explains that Heather needs many different shoes to walk her  many paths of passion.

She is one of the most versatile people I know that can do, act, say, wear, make or be anything. Heather has been studying French twice a week, on and off, for the past 2 years, and recently she’s enrolled in classes to actually speak the language. (She’s spending most of May in Paris, for the a physical exam). Whether it’s taking Hoola Hoop lessons in the east village for 2 hours each week, performing stand up comedy on a Sunday afternoon or writing  pharmaceutical campaign launch materials, Heather Sparks wears a lot of shoes.

Heather has been studying French twice a week, on and off, for the past 2 years, and recently she’s enrolled in classes to actually speak the language.

She also happens to live true the stylish stiletto strutting woman you initially imagined. In fact, her  Fall 2011 wardrobe was inspired by “the bad Sandra D in Greece”, which required wearing high waisted disco pants, rolled sleeve wovens tied at the waist and a black

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I’ve Outgrown Age 22

I haven’t forgot where I came from, I just don’t remember myself there.

Get To Know Me

I am employed at Bath & Body Works Direct, a brand conceived by Victoria Secret creator, philanthropist and retail pioneer, Les Wexner at the Limited Brands in Columbus, Ohio. Recently, the marketing team had me fill out a “Get To Know Me” form. Here is how I am defined in their terms:

Favorite Word: Pipistrelli

Name & Title

Michelle Pizzurro, Copywriter BBWD




March 31st

I’ve been at BBW since…

April 2

3 words that best describe me

Energetic, Passionate, Stylish

Word I Love

Pipistrelli (The word for ‘Bat’ in Italian as well as the name of a super yummy restaurant in Florence)

Word I Hate


If I were a BBW fragrance, I would be called…

Balcony Bouquets A Signature Collection view of Fragrance from above, featuring Venetian Terrace, Rooftop Garden, Country Porch and Island Lanai

Favorite being Venetian Terrace: A playful carnival of sweet gardenia, ocean rain and black leather.

Biggest Pet Peeve

A Bad Attitude

If I’m in a bad mood, the only thing that cheers me up is……particularly this video about baby sloths:

Signature Starbucks Drink

Grande skim mocha with ½ the pumps of chocolate w/whip (Ya… I’m one of those)

Lunch Spot I Love

Aurora, Broome Street

Lunch Spot I Hate

My Desk

Favorite Dessert

Crème Brulee

My Personal Theme Song

Happy Birthday

The actor who would play me in the movie of my life is…

Marissa Tomei

Favorite Color


Favorite Book

Wind Up Bird Chronicles

Favorite Magazine


Favorite TV Show

Absolutely Fabulous

Favorite Movie

The Reader, The Lover, Stepbrothers

(I got range)

Favorite Band

Stones, The Kills, Neil Young,

If I were an animal I would be…

A Horse

Favorite Spot in Columbus


Hidden Talent

INSTAGLAM: Antonio Lopez Illustrated

Way before Terry Richardson was taking photos of  girls  *%$#@ him on set and  back when American Apparel was something made in NY on 36th street, boobies and wee wees were being caught by Antonio Lopez’s “porn” and shoot style. The famed fashion illustrator’s untamed moments are bound with the release of Instaglam, a book revealing fashion stars behind the scenes.

Read and see more photos at Bustown Modern’s blog

Jerry Hall baring all in a 70’s shot by Lopez, one of several documented in Instamatic. And just think…I almost gave this book to my VP as a “forget me not” when I left my last job.

Fashion illustrator Antonio Lopez delivered hard bodied beauties to the canvas as if they had been drenched in latin libido, dropped from the talons of a tropical toucan and danced at an all night disco. Cobalt, luscious reds, fantastical fuchsias and violets, his heavy handed, technicolor-palette could only be upstaged by the figures that confined them, visually splashing throughout Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and Elle throughout the 70’s and across advertisements for Missoni, Norma Kamali + Oscar De La Renta.

Without the brush, his painterly pizzazz is exposed in the new book of candid photos, Instamatics, revealing all the fantastical mayhem…..READ MORE HERE

Ch Ch Cha Gia!

Gia Carangi looking so much like Crystal Renn.

Francesco Scavullo was the top fashion photographer in 1979. He shot this, as well as many many iconic pics including all the covers for Cosmopolitan.

The notorious story of Gia tells the tragic effects of fast fame and lives to provide a cross sectional view of the early 80’s three vices: greed, drug addiction and AIDS.  At a time when fashion talent management was at its infancy and agents were just perfecting the lucrative art of disposable talent, there was little investment in a model’s long term career . The industry spit out talent faster than they printed the magazines for which they served.Gia’s look was considered “ethnic” Along with Dickenson, Iman and Brooke Shields, her look was a fresh relief from the blonde dominated pages of Cosmo + Vogue. Her look was positioned as new guard, replacing 70’s blonde beauties like Christie Brinkley and Cheryl Tiegs. The brunettes simply matched fashion’s rising stars’ aesthetics as Calvin Klein, Armani and Ralph Lauren introduced a new palette of browns, clays and greys.

Gia, fell to much darker times as her drug addiction struggle that certainly was enabled by the high times of fashion’s fast lane, that at that time had no speed limit.

Her story now serves as a guard rail to the troubled. To launch such a tragic soul to fame as quickly as did Gia’s, would be a reflection on the agent and agency.  A good agent invests in a girl’s longevity and paces her exposure, supports her health and keeps her looking and feeling light, no matter how dark her look is.

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Bus Town’s Modernist

Anessa Woods in Brooklyn December 2011.

The first time I met Anessa Woods, was in 1999 at Larry’s Bar, a smoke filled watering hole on University campus that attracted hipsters, linguistics professors and dirty old men. Rumored to have been a gay bar within OSU’s Greek systems, Larry’s was routinely skipped by braternity pub crawlers, allowing non student campus residents to debate art, philosphy, music and more. But take away the designer denim, tweed jackets,  and ironic tees and we were all the same drunk. Except for Anessa.

Anessa was a passionate photography student who loved fashion, post-modern art, and the Detroit music scene. She was wild with a 70’s je’ ne se qua and for not being a full on punk, she had an attitude that screamed “fuck it”. At rock shows, I’d often admire her thick blonde mane, backlit by stage lights,  as it wafted to the beat of the drum.

Fast forward 13 years, take a left at NY, walk across the bridge over some arguments over guys,  then take a right to Columbus, Ohio and Anessa is not only a dear friend, but owner of  Bustown Modern, a digital vintage clothing boutique she started with her husband, Paul Fogt in 2006. She is also the only one of my friends to Continue reading

Better Off RED

Red doesn’t taste like strawberry and it isn’t shy.

In order for red to be sweet, you have to add sugar, and then you’ve  got plain old pink.

Red is unapologetic.

Red ate blue.

Red makes you stop.

Red is both near and far.

Red is multilingual.

Red hates cherry and lolipops too.

Red has no fear.

Red will leave you wanting more.

Red has traveled to all 7 continents.

Red will most likely leave a mark.

Red gets you into trouble.

Red could care less.

Red never looks back.

Nailed. My fave Guy Bourdin photo.

Click the slideshow to view all photos.

Plated Gold

In my last post about Aurora Ristorante, I wrote a bit about how eating Italian at restaurants can often be a disappointment when you grow up in Italy. Here’s proof: Fresh Italian dishes my friend’s mothers in Italy, Signora Degli Innocenti e Signora Caccavale, prepared for me during my last trip.

Grilled Bronzino that had been caught in the Mediterranean, by Silvia Caccavale's father, 5 hours before. It was SO yummy!

Signora Caccavale and her table of treats. Yes- those are stuffed muscles and they were amazing. Summer 2010.

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Aurora Ristorante

One of my fave spots for Italian (and the food is good too)

Il Polipo: Grilled Mediterranean octopus atop potato-celery salad available on Aurora Manhattan's lunch menu.

 To call home cooked meals merely an Italian tradition would be like referring to the iphone as a calculator. Real Italian cooking isn’t just noodles or meatballs- it’s a word: fresh.  I would bet that anyone in Italy would agree that dining out, is more often a disappointment than a pleasure. Having grown up with Italian grandmothers and mothers,  most Italians were raised savoring organic love and sweet care, served  to them in the form of food, impossible to duplicate.

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Pendant Panache

New NTO Trio Pendant can adorn any piece of jewelry


Toggle and insert to any round ring up to 1/2" in diameter on a bracelet, necklace or even earring!

Pretty pendant comes with a 22" necklace.


All NTO styles are hand made from solid sterling silver.