DRESSING ROOM: Spa’s menu includes fitness

Julie Wax of Little Rock was among 31 bloggers in the country chosen to participate in “The Little Black Dress Experiment Tours America,” which took place this month. Wax interpreted the dress in her own way by adding key pieces.

— In Maranda Davis’ mind, health and beauty run hand in hand. This self-described fitness nerd, along with fiance Wayne D. Bashay II, have filled a River Market District void with a spa that offers customers the opportunity to be healthy and look good.

Physique Spa - in the Tuf-Nut Building - bears the motto “Transforming inner and outer beauty.” In addition to regular spa services are Zumba and Zumba Gold classes (the first class is free) and Total Package Training Boot Camp.

The spacious facility features a large front room that serves as a reception area and a site for fitness classes. Beyond, a hallway divides treatment rooms and a refreshment center with wine, cheese, crackers and fruit available to customers.

In the front room of the spa is a photo of Davis’ grandmother, who died in October of a heart attack. “After talking to different doctors [I found that] if she would have been doing some kind of exercise, if she would had been watching what she ate, if she would have incorporated 10 minutes of walking a day, anything to help her heart get healthier - then she would have lived a longer life,” Davis says.

The grieving Davis was persuaded by her mother-in-law to-be, aesthetician Karla Scott, to study to become an aesthetician herself. “It was kind of my therapy, as I called it,” Davis says. On April 30 - her grandmother’s birthday - Davis and Bashay, a personal trainer, opened Physique Spa. The couple soon had to close the spa for re-installation of the floor, but opened it again recently.

Spa services include intriguing menu items such as a “back facial” ($70), with a foot massage to boot; The Ultimate Facial ($125), which allows the customer to pick two treatments from a varied menu; and a cellulite body treatment ($100-$200). Also offered are other facials, body wraps, hair removal services and several massage therapies. In addition to NaturaLash eyelash extensions ($250-$300), Davis offers “Bump-Her” lashes ($125) - a process created by Scott wherein synthetic tab eyelashes are combined with individual lashes for a fuller look.

Physique Spa is at 300 River Market Ave., Suite 103. Hours are 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday-Friday; 9 a.m. -2 p.m. Saturday. Call (501) 786-1348 or visit yourphysiquespa.com.


Baumans Fine Men’s Clothing, in Pavilion in the Park at 8201 Cantrell Road, Little Rock, will hold its Italian Fashion Week from Sept. 13-18. The event, which kicks off the fall fashion season, will feature goods from such designers as Brioni, Salvatore Ferragamo, Brunello Cucinelli and Angelo Nardelli. For more information call (501) 227-8797.


Belated congratulations to Julie Wax of Little Rock. She was among 31 bloggers in the country to participate in “The Little Black Dress Experiment Tours America,” which took place this month. The bloggers were each assigned a day in August to style their own Ann Taylordress - the Stretch Cotton Shirred Shirtdress - with the help of accessories and trend pieces. Each day during the month, the website Society Stylist (societystylist. com) posted the look of the blogger du jour. Wax’s blog, I Heart Heels (iheartheels. com), was the featured blog Aug. 7. In her photo, taken at Razorback Stadium in Fayetteville, she shortened her dress, paired it with dark indigo “jeggings” (jean leggings) and added a pair of black suede heels, a gray scarf, black and white circle earrings, a studded stretch bracelet, black/gold watch and red bag.

I Heart Heels, which includes interviews with fashion standouts such as Project Runway Season 8 designer Sarah Trost and designer Tracy Reese, has most recently been featured in Seventeen, Glamour and InStyle magazines.


Never fear. A general roundup of fall fashion will be seen in this space soon. Meanwhile, here’s a Part One of what we can expect in party/homecoming/prom attire for 2010-11, according to Little Rock fashion maven Rita Mitchell Harvey and her team of fashionistas:

“The new convertible - a short dress or smallbubble style that can be worn for a party, wedding, or over leggings for a funky, campy look. Pretty Princess - Empire with grace and style in sheer, silk, or pleats.Heavenly Metals - All metallic colors report in, with fabric and with beads. The warm-up of the cold shoulder - a less severe, easier-to-wear expression of the austere one shoulder styles of last year. Out-of-focus florals - Think Monet and light-capturing Impressionists. ... Juliet style - Not low-cut, but delicately shown over a crumb-catcher [bodice] or a sweetheart bodice. Get Back: Back-chic is alive and well.”


Dillard’s: The Ruby Road Animal/Paisley-Print Tunic ($48 in the store; $39 at Dil lards.com), a black/taupe/ caramel, self-explanatory polyester top with split neck embellished by round, antique gold studs and three quarter sleeves. The tunic is not as long as I’d prefer, but it’s a nice summer-into-fall piece.

Ashro.com: The Taryn Dress (clearance price $59). This beautiful, antique gold polyester gown features a skirt with alternating tiers of matte chiffon and shimmery charmeuse. The sleeveless bodice, which features a Vneck and beaded trim detail at the waist, may need fashion tape to stay in place. Bottomheavy? The lining may prove snug, but the tiers disguise bumps and bulges. Several sizes were still available as this column went to press.

Midnightvelvet.com: The “Marni” Strap Shoe ($59.99), an evening sandal with a transparent, open-toed upper, rhinestone T-strap and 2 1 /2-inch transparent acrylic heel. It comes in medium and wide widths and in four colors. The shoe is lovely, comfortable and yes, “wide” width is wide enough. The downside of clear heels: Do we really need to see the screw securing heel to sandal?

Softsurroundingsoutlet. com: The Shapely Surplice Dress ($29.99). The cotton knit dress hits just below the knee and features surplice bodice styling, side shirring of the true wrap skirt and three-quarter length raglan sleeves. Unfortunately it’s made from a thick, clingy Tshirt-y material that restricts movement and doesn’t have much drape ... or give. Best for boyish figures.

Nordstrom.com: Rare, attractive plus-size workout pieces by Hard Tail. These are bigger versions of misses’ items and look like what the 110-pound gal in your Zumba class would be wearing. Garments include the Roll Waist Pants ($76-78), black flare-legs whose fold-over waists come in solid black or tie-dye prints and the Long Tank ($56), an extra-long tank with built-in bra. The pants offer the right degree of support and comfort. Online reviewers and Nordstrom officials encourage customers to order the top a size up; I did so and found it a bit roomy.Order your regular size if you’re hourglass-shaped or bottom heavy; order a size up if you’re top-heavy.

Dressing Room is published biweekly. Got fashion and beauty news? Contact Helaine R.Williams, Dressing Room, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, P.O. Box 2221, Little Rock, Ark. 72203, or e-mail:


Style, Pages 27 on 08/31/2010