Back to Basics - The Return of the Artisan

We live in a mass-produced world. With the ascendancy of chain store culture, individual style has become harder and harder to achieve. We are encouraged to be consumers, not producers, of our own culture.

In days gone by, most everyone possessed a craft by which to live by. However, when the industrial revolution steamed by in the early eighteen-hundreds, the call for individual craft was replaced by the driving force of mechanized production.

But now, when we as a society rely most on mass-production, the time of the artisan is on the rise again. A concept previously associated with poorly-knitted sweaters from grandma, handcrafted products have made a resounding appearance on the fashion market once more.

The movement is still fresh off the line, but already there has been a boom in popularity for handcrafted accessories. Bags, jewelry, hats, and scarves are just a few examples of items so popular that their creators hardly have time to complete the last stitch.

And it's no wonder, considering the benefits. A handcrafted item is not only one of a kind, but often much better quality than something one would find in your local department store. It possesses a human attention to detail that a machine cannot affect.

When you buy handcrafted, it has much broader positive effect in that you're supporting local and small businesses. By paying artists and craftspeople for their goods, you are supporting them and your own local economy. Also, the accumulating environmental effects of mass production are a major cause of global warming and the poisoning of our air, water and soil, so you would be doing your part for the environment as well in buying handcrafted.

Pioneers of the handcrafted movement include the website,, Nashelle, Maya Moon, Susan Shaw, oSo Accessories, and Lavish. Each of these companies promotes handcrafted, quality items that are easily accessible to the everyday consumer. is an online marketplace for buying and selling all things handcrafted. In offering viable alternatives to mass-produced objects in the world marketplace, Etsy encourages consumers to be aware of the social and environmental implications of their purchases. Etsy was conceived by Rob Kalin in early 2005. Etsy now has 870,000 registered users, 160,000 of whom are individual artists selling more than 1.5 million of their handcrafted creations.

Other companies offer more specialized services in not just vending the handcrafted items, but designing and creating them. Maya Moon Designs offers handbags that are personally handcrafted with the quality leather and unique textiles. With a focus on durability and uniqueness, coupled with a passion for funky and adventurous fashion, Maya Moon bags are intended to reflect your personal fashion statement for years forward. Maya also gets it that function is essential in a handbag. Sturdy inside and outside pockets, high quality zippers and notions, and pattern design are all chosen for the marriage of functionality and flair.

Handcrafted jewelry is especially popular due to the available variety of design and materials that may be used. Nashelle Jewelry is an intimate company based in Bend, Oregon. Each piece created at Nashelle's is hand-made to order with the guarantee to never mass-produce or outsource.

Another handcrafted jewelry contributor is Susan Shaw Accessories. Susan Shaw designs the latest fashion trends with carefully selected glass beads and a growing collection of sterling silver, pewter and semi-precious stones. She then combines these to create her beautiful jewelry collections. Susan is also proud of her "Give-Back Program", whereby the company donates a portion of its proceeds to selected charities. The company plans on continuously expanding its "Give-Back" collections.

oSo Accessories is yet another budding company that specializes in hand-crafted jewelry. Their unique selection of semi-precious stones and luminous metals combine for a vibrant style of jewelry. Lavish Designs are similar to oSo Accessories in their use of fine wirework in their designs with not a single item mass-produced.

While the prices of handcrafted pieces may be slightly higher than that of their mass-produced cousins, take into consideration that you're paying for a quality and singular style unheard of in most commercial venues. It's going to last longer, and twenty-thousand other people won't have it. So the next time you set out to search for that perfect handbag, consider the benefits of buying handcrafted.

Sponsored by: Dating and Attract Women like Don Juan


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Author: Sara Metz

Back to Basics - The Return of the Artisan

The Twenty-Something Guide to Dressing Your Age

In a society where the norms and boundaries of fashion are constantly challenged, it can be a nail-biting experience to work out what exactly constitutes "appropriate" dress for one's age. Unfortunately for today's fun-loving, professional women on the move, trying to dress as young as one feels often results in embarrassing fashion disasters. Below, we've put together a few rules to help you avoid of the most frustrating dilemmas

Rule 1: Discover Your Personal style

Many women consider "appropriate" to be synonymous with "boring". The secret to dressing appropriately for your age without emulating Barbara Bush is to figure out your own personal style and let that guide you.

If you're not sure what your style might be, try this quick exercise: grab a piece of paper and make three columns. In the first column, list everything you love about yourself (we're talking personality traits, not "shiny hair"). In the next, list traits of women you admire. In the third, list words that you'd like people to use about you when you're not around. Now take note on what words show up in all three lists. These words show how you would like to be seen by the world, which is a major cornerstone of your style. What's important is not to be afraid to make mistakes. You're young and experimentation will help you to build your look.

Rule 2: Accept Your Twenty-Something Status

Usually women in their twenties have launched themselves into the professional world by now, and even if you've managed to land a job with one of those edgy, wear-what-you-like, break-the-rules media or fashion companies, it's still important to remember that you are no-longer in your teeny-bopper years. Even outside the workplace, some rules are not meant to be broken. You're an adult (more or less) now. You're going to be expected to dress like it. Avoid the "too" factor - too short, too tight, too much. It sounds easy, but look around next time you're in public. Too many 20-somethings are still showing muffin tops over low-cut jeans, with an equally unsightly roll of fat trapped by thong elastic appearing whenever they bend over. Fashions should be worn to enhance rather than expose, to conceal figure faults rather than flaunt them.

Rule 3: Dress for the Future

Now that you've become a responsible member of society, the future seems to be looming a lot closer than it ever has before, right? This is an age when you're struggling to make your ambitions a reality. When you look at your wardrobe, ask yourself where you want to be in ten, twenty years. Do your clothes reflect this? As mentioned in Rule #1, your clothes are the first thing the world perceives. They can reflect your dreams and goals, as well as personality. In both professional environments, your choice of clothing will make the first introductions for you.

Sponsored by: Dating and Attract Women like Don Juan

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Author: Sara Metz

The Twenty-Something Guide to Dressing Your Age

Top 10 Miami Beauty Salons to Make Your Look a Killing One

Have you heard about makeover? No! Don't you want to rejuvenate your personality? Yes, Great! There are numerous beauty salons established in Miami to take care of individuals' appearances. Some of these are sophisticated and high-quality. Beauty salons are now going out of their ways to focus on customized solutions to enhance individuals' looks.

Here is a list of Top 10 of Beauty Salons in Miami. This list will guide you in finding the best Hair Sensations Salon in Miami as it's compiled on the basis that how frequently the Salons are used by customers. More frequently the Salon is used, more frequently it is stored in people's records.

Here's a list of Top 10 Beauty Salons in Miami:

1. Maribelle Day Spa

(452 people stored this Beauty Salon in their digital address books) (305) 666-9666, 5911 Bird Rd - Miami, FL 33155.

2. Rik Rak Salon Incorporated

(305) 371-5577, 1428 Brickell Ave Ste 100 - Miami, FL 33131.

3. Stella Salon & Spa

(305) 532-0024, 404 Washington Ave - Miami Beach, FL 33139.

4. Van Michaels Miami Salon

(305) 534-6789, 1667 Michigan Ave - Miami Beach, FL 33139.

5. Sanel Salon

(305) 740-9111, 10 Edgewater Dr - Coral Gables, FL 33133.

6. T Mj Cranlo Facial Pain

(305) 666-8883, 8000 SW 67th Ave - Miami, FL 33143.

7. Samy Hair Design

(305) 261-7269, 755 NW 72nd Ave Ste 26 - Miami, FL 33126.

8. Luca Hair Salon

(305) 461-2443, 2330 Ponce de Leon Blvd - Coral Gables, FL 33134.

9. Ugo di Roma

(305) 444-4661, 2801 Florida Ave - Miami, FL 33133.

10. Hair Sensations Salon

(305) 931-2951, Aventura Mall - Hialeah, FL 33010.

Since makeover is about renovating your own personality, find the best Miami Beauty Salon to rejuvenate your personality. This Top 10 List will help you finding the best quality Salon. So, visit the best beauty salon in your neighborhood in Miami and expect the unexpected change in your look as well as personality!

Sponsored by: Dating and Attract Women like Don Juan


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Author: Zander Smith

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Top 10 Miami Beauty Salons to Make Your Look a Killing One

Is It A Good Idea To Buy A Designer Prom Dress Online?

Shopping online is incredibly popular; it's less tiring, you can find a bigger selection and it's fun. But, is it okay to buy a designer prom dress online? Prom Night is the most important day in a teenage girl's life and they want to be sure that everything is going to go as planned and that they will look beautiful in their prom gown. Buying that dress online is fine as long as you follow a few guidelines and exercise a little common sense.

Buying anything online can be easier than other forms of shopping but at times it can also be more difficult. One of the biggest problems with shopping online is information overload; the web offers a vast selection and this can sometimes overwhelm the would-be buyer. The same applies when looking to buy a designer prom dress on the web; there are many thousands to choose from and trying to find that perfect gown can soon become a very frustrating experience.

The biggest single piece of advice to make shopping for that gown easier is to first decide on the style you want. Most fashion houses specialize in one or two main styles. If you know what style you want, and what fashion houses make them, you can save both time and your sanity.

If you're looking for the classic prom dress style then labels like Joli, Tiffany, Flirt and Jessica McClintock will give you what you're looking for. For something a little more contemporary, such as short skirts and slits, Jovani, and Paparazzi by Mori Lee are worth looking at.

But, if you're modern, confident and want a dress that looks light years away from the more traditional styles that your mother would have worn, then Xcite prom dresses are for you.

When you do find an online retailer make sure that they are an authorized dealer. Would you buy a designer prom dress from someone standing on a street corner with a suitcase full of them? No, you wouldn't, because chances are they wouldn't be the real McCoy. It's exactly the same when buying anything online. Most manufacturers provide a list of authorized retailers on their website. Some genuine retailers might not be on the list, but they should be able to provide proof that they are authorized dealers; if not, don't buy from them.

Sizing can be an issue; manufacturer sizes vary - a 12 size dress from one might be a size 10 from another. Thankfully, most retailers provide a size chart on their website, which will help you get the size right.

Many online retailers will also sell accessories that match the dress. It's often a good idea to buy these at the same time as the dress as finding these after you get the dress may be a problem.

One final point; order in plenty of time. Most gowns - even designer prom dresses - need some minor alterations to fit perfectly. Prom season is a busy time of the year and most alteration services will be very busy. Unless you're good at needle work, you should get a professional to make the necessary adjustments.

Sponsored by: Dating and Attract Women like Don Juan


Author: Follow the links for designer prom dresses like the Tiffany prom dress and the Jessica McClintock prom dress as well as many others.

Is It A Good Idea To Buy A Designer Prom Dress Online?

Advantages of Celtic Engagement Rings

There are many reasons why Celtic engagement rings are so popular. After you have heard about them, you will surely decide that a Celtic engagement ring is the one you want.

Celtic engagement rings combine classic tradition with modern sophistication. There are a number of different options, each showing the strong Celtic history. As the Celtic Knot is a symbol of love, union, and infinity, it is the perfect symbol of your commitment to your marriage and life together. Often referred to as the Lovers' Knot, this is one of the most popular designs for engagement rings. Although this design is a favorite in itself, it can be even more meaningful when it is the theme of a custom-made ring. You can choose from amongst the many Celtic Knot rings currently available, or have a ring which is uniquely your own. Whichever you prefer, the rich symbolism of the Celtic Knot is a beautiful way to express your eternal love and commitment.

The Claddagh is also a popular design for Celtic rings. Although many people wear the Claddagh simply because it is a lovely design for jewelry, it has its own history as being an engagement symbol. The Claddagh consists of hands, heart, and a crown; these represent friendship, love, and loyalty. The simple but elegant beauty of the Claddagh makes it a favorite style in engagement rings. It is as popular today as it has been throughout generations in the past.

Many people like to incorporate the Celtic Cross into their engagement rings. Regardless of one's particular religious beliefs, an engagement ring which symbolizes God's love is an appropriate way for a couple to begin their new life together.

One of the nicest aspects of Celtic engagement rings is that there is such a wide variety available, the one you choose will be very special even if you purchase one that is ready-made. All of these popular designs can be found individually in an assortment of styles, as well as rings which have a combination of these symbols. You can also have the type of metal you prefer, as they are available in sterling silver, platinum, and the various karats of gold. If you feel that an engagement ring should include a stone, many Celtic engagement rings have diamonds, emeralds, and other gemstones.

For a truly unique expression of your love and commitment, you can have a Celtic ring custom-made just for you. You will have the finest workmanship and the finest quality materials in the ring which you design. You are individuals, and your relationship is unique; a one-of-a-kind ring is the most lovely way to show it. When you select the metal, stone, and design you want, it will be your very own creation.

Amongst the many styles of Celtic engagement rings currently available, or if you prefer to design your own, the rich tradition coupled with a modern sense of sophistication will make it easy for you to select the one ring that is perfect for you.

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Author: Stewart Baker writes for Shanore is a leading Irish jeweler specializing in creating unique custom designed Celtic engagement rings for couples. They also handcraft Celtic wedding rings for that special occasion. You'll find popular Claddagh Rings as well. Browse their huge selection online for the one that is right for you.

Advantages of Celtic Engagement Rings