Busy sisters star on TV's 'A Makeover Story'

Date: 2001-02-27

The Plain Dealer

Jennifer Marando and her sister, Crissy Kolarik, run an adoption agency that keeps them going, as the slang goes, 24/7.

"Last year we placed 93 children, including special needs kids, which is really good," says Marando, who lives in Akron.

Not that they're complaining, but finding homes for children through their "A Child's Waiting Foster Care and Adoption Program" leaves little time for beauty shop appointments or fashion. As Kolarik puts it, "We kind of let ourselves fall apart."

So, unbeknownst to her sister, Kolarik, who lives in Parma, e-mailed The Learning Channel's "A Makeover Story" asking that the two be considered for a head-to-toe overhaul. The program is inundated with about 300 e-mail and written makeover requests a day, but these sisters from Northeast Ohio got the nod.

Marissa Jiunta, a researcher for the program, explains why. "They started their own adoption agency, which adds a cool element to their story," she says. "They also have a very close relationship, which is what we look for."

Davida Salon & Spa at the Eton Collection did Kolarik's and Marando's hair and makeup. Owner David Porris said the sisters' hair was cut several inches, but not too short because both are tall - 6-foot-1 - and need some length to balance their height. Their hair also was tinted, but not too dramatically.

"We kept it close to their natural shade, which is a medium-to-dark brown, but the color gives more depth and tone," Porris explains. "It's a nonperoxide color that grows out gracefully."

Kolarik was outfitted in a blue top and slim blue print skirt by DKNY. Marando chose a red top with a drapey neckline by Kenneth Cole, and a slim leather skirt. Both outfits are from Dillard's at Beachwood Place.

"I love the way I look," says Marando, who is glad her sister pursued the makeover, even though she wasn't aware of it until they were selected. "This isn't something I normally would have done but I'm glad I did."


Candidates for "A Makeover Story" are required to apply in pairs, whether it is a husband and wife, mother and daughter, or best friends. Both must live in the same area, and there must be a specific event, such as a 50th birthday party, anniversary or some other special occasion. Kolarik had her 30th birthday party coming up, and she thought it would be fun for her and her sister to make an entrance with their new look.

"A Makeover Story" is produced by Banyan Productions in Philadelphia. A crew from the production company spent three days in Greater Cleveland getting to know the sisters and their families, including their husbands, filming the two as they shopped for outfits, had their hair and makeup done, and walked into the climactic party.

The show featuring the sisters will air sometime in the fall. This is the second time the show has had a Cleveland connection: last October, the Cleveland-based Fibres chain of shops was the source of clothing for a young woman who was being made over.

If you are interested in being considered as a subject for the program, send recent nonreturnable photographs of you and your makeover buddy with a letter. Remember, makeovers are special event-oriented. E-mail the photos to makeoverwebmail@banyanprod.com, or mail photos to Banyan Productions, Attn: A Makeover Story, Box 8746, Philadelphia, PA 19101. You can check out previous makeovers at www.amakeoverstory.com. Click on "In Production."

The Web site address for the sisters' adoption agency, which they run out of their homes, is www.achildswaiting.com.

E-mail: rwashington@plaind.com Phone: 216-999-4427


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