Mariel Alvarado's whimsical, bohemian and romantically feminine style is apparent from her everyday outfits to her special occasion dresses.
"I love mixing the old with the new," she says. "I never want to look like I walked out of a store window display. I prefer to look a little off."
The petite businesswoman, mother, wife and Cliffside Park resident loves vintage pieces and off-the-beaten-path ways of finding them.
Garage sale shopping is where Alvarado scores most of her costume jewelry. She hunts for unique treasures to complement her outfits.
"Going to garage sales reminds me of when I was a little girl and would go out with my mom on Saturdays," she says. "That's fun for me."
Her love for art is apparent from her choice in clothing, accessories and home décor. Alvarado and her husband, Bobby, met in Miami six years ago and make an annual trip that always includes a visit to their favorite artist's store.
"We love Romero Britto's artwork and have a lot of his pieces throughout our home," she says.
Describing herself as a "frustrated fashionista," Alvarado identifies with bohemian-chic but is versatile when it comes to many of her fashion choices.
"I can wear Valentino head-to-toe, which is super feminine," she says. "No matter what, I like to be comfortable, creative and classy."
Handbags and shoes top her must-haves list and always become a go-to to jazz up any look.
"I love wearing a plain white T-shirt with jeans, which is a super simple outfit, and then adding an amazing handbag and a great pair of heels to complete it," she says.
Alvarado is not label conscious and really sticks to her gut and her fashion-savvy style when shopping some of her favorite off-the-radar boutiques. Unconcerned with fashion seasons, she will easily rock a dress from many years ago and update it with interesting statement jewelry and a killer pair of pumps.
Besides delving into fashion, Alvarado has made it her mission to empower women. At the end of a long work day when the sun is down and her 4-year-old son, Bobby, is in bed, Alvarado and her business partner, Brandyn Randolph, enjoy a glass of wine and map out their business plans. Their brainchild, LadySavant.com, was born after several of those nights. LadySavant's mission is to inspire and encourage women to keep moving forward in the direction of their dreams while still being able to do it all – wife, mother, businesswoman.
"Every day is an opportunity to learn something new about the world and about ourselves," Alvarado says. "Engaging in yourself and the world around you is what we call 'savanting.'"
Adding to the empowering site, which also hosts a marketplace for local women to sell their products and services, Alvarado and Randolph launched a brand of their own, Lady Savant Wines. Alvarado has been in the wine industry for almost five years and creating her own wine, "Problem Solving Pinot" and "Moonlight White," with a powerful message on the back label and a fun, French-inspired front label, seemed more than fitting.
"At the end of the day, we mapped out our entire business plan over a glass of wine, so it was a natural next step," she says. "We both have bachelor's degrees from Texas schools and love art, crafting, entrepreneurship, spirituality, family and wellness. We believe in having good energy and working really hard. If we can chase our dreams, so can you."