Image by Rose via Flicker
I’m writing this post for a generation of people who don’t tend to collect antiques. Anything old is boring and usually discarded. But chill out on that attitude! Read on.
Sometimes it doesn’t take much more than a fresh polish to make something old new again. It’s amazing how a little TLC can go so far to change perception.
An old dirty relic: once loved and cherished, now boring and invisible. A clean and polished antique however –a noteworthy conversation piece.
People are the same way; underneath a dirty, aged, rough exterior it’s easy to lose sight of the person underneath it all. The more a person lets themselves go, the more they forget, and the more invisible they become.
I’m not bored, and it isn’t a slow week for content –I’m dead serious. I see an important correlation here.
Video link – too relevant to not include: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6a6VVncgHcY
Take this homeless American veteran for example. Jim Wolf: Invisible to the masses that walked by every day, probably invisible to himself and one person saw potential. We learn two things from this video:
1. Jim needed to see himself in a new light to really see him again. It had probably been years since he saw his own true face, and a little spit polish made his life new. His body had once been a tool he loved, nurtured, and maintained –and a few years is all it takes to forget the original splendour of anything. But when you get that feeling back –wow. WOW. It can move mountains.
2. Whoever’s idea it was to do this in the first place is the kind of person who maintains antiques. They look for the beauty in everything, and they change things. They bring back the loving and cherished feeling in everything around them.
How you treat your antiquities long-term says a whole lot about you. It’s also a unique thing to do these days to distinguish oneself from others in our throw-away society.
Cleaning and maintaining antiquities also takes time. Time that you can spend trying to pull back that feeling that previous owners felt –that story that connected them to their antiques and lit them up.
Alright, well I hope that jazzed you up a little bit and put a little nugget in your knowledge basket because now I’m going to get sorta’ boring and discuss the work part, and how to clean and maintain antiques, jewellery, you name it.
The technology and methods are a little weird for a generation who grew up at a time when everything was made of plastic, and Windex was all you needed.
Ultrasonic cleaning is ideal for fragile antiques, different style art deco jewellery in Australia, and ones that have a lot more nooks and hard to reach areas.
In a nutshell; place an antique in a solution of either water or cleaning product (water usually does the trick) and set it on an ultrasonic agitator. Ultrasonic agitation chips away at imperfections stuck onto your antique with cavitation bubbles created by high frequency agitation. It’s pretty rad.
This method can kill all sorts of baddies, from algae and fungus to rust and oil.
Take it from Mister Miyagi –do it yourself, with your own two hands. Apply the polish, and then remove. Apply, remove. Keep doing this until your antique is restored to its former glory.
Or until you pass out.
Let us know what you think of this article in the comments. If there’s a deeper meaning I’m trying to express, what would it be? What did you take away from this one? Happy belated New Year, everyone!
As the winter months approach, women all over Britain will be digging out their cashmere clothing designed to keep them warm until spring. Some may even be looking to invest in a few new luxury pieces, in order to keep up with the latest trends.
Cashmere is a very beautiful material, but it is also quite delicate. It requires a great deal of care and attention in order to stay in excellent condition for as long as possible. Here, we go through a few basic tips for looking after you’re cashmere clothing.
Generally speaking, you want to avoid putting your cashmere in the washing machine. The one exception is if your particular device has a hand wash setting, but otherwise, you should be doing this yourself. If you’re willing to spend some money, however, you do have the option of utilising a dry cleaning service.
When washing by hand, here are a few things to consider:
- Use lukewarm water – no hotter or it will damage the material. Apply the same temperature when rinsing.
- Use a clean sink, or preferably a brand new wash basin.
- Turn the clothing inside out.
- Be gentle – gently press the material to rid it of water. Don’t squeeze too tightly.
- Find detergent specially made for cashmere clothing, and use only a small amount.
Finally, it’s important to point out that cashmere with traces of dirt, or things like food, can attract clothes moths – which can have a negative effect on your items.
Again, for the best results, you’ll want to avoid a machine when it comes to drying. You shouldn’t hang it up either, as the water will flow the bottom and this could reshape the clothing. Lay it down flat, possibly on a towel, and lightly press to remove any excess fluids.
Keep in mind not to place it near any form of heat, whether that be a radiator or outside in the sun. Allow it to air dry naturally – this may take longer, but otherwise the standard of your cashmere will be seriously reduced.
This may seem like a less important issue, but the way you store your cashmere clothing can have a big impact on its condition. As mentioned previously, moths can cause you a lot of problems, so you want to ensure there’s no chance of them being attracted to your items while they’re put away.
One thing you can do is make your drawer clean – hoover it out, then give it a polish and make sure it’s sparkling before using it. You can also buy anti-moth paper that should prevent them from ruining your designer gear.
Should you already have a moth problem, then there are productive steps you can take. Simply wrap your clothes in a plastic bag and put them in the freezer – this will kill all the moths, and won’t damage the material in any way. Allow it to defrost slowly and you’ll be able to wear your pristine cashmere again in no time.
Are you looking for some luxury cashmere clothing before the winter comes? Check out the excellent range available at Winser London.
I love a good wedding, don’t you? They are happy, joyous occasions filled with dancing, alcohol, food, and cake. What’s not to love? I’ll tell you: If you’re the one putting the thing on you’ll hate the cost. Wowzers they are expensive. I mean really expensive. If you’re worried about the cost of your wedding, check below for some tips on how to save money.
15 Money Saving Tips For Your Wedding Day is a graphic produced by Gumtree.com.
by USACE Europe District
We all go through stages in life where we want to get to know new people, but it’s not always easy to find them. Depending on what work you do, you may meet new faces through work; perhaps going out with other colleagues after work and meeting people they know. And you could always run into a new acquaintance if you shop at a regular time and day every week in the same supermarket. Stranger things have happened, but that’s a bit of a long shot.
Of course, if you’re looking for romance, one of the simplest ways to meet a potential new partner is to join a dating site, but it’s not always a new partner that you’re looking for. Sometimes you just want to widen your social circle and make some new friends.
There are a couple of ways that you can meet people in different social settings than you might not have considered.
You might think of online games as being solo activities and when you play bingo, it’s just you taking part in a game that many people join in. However, the big difference in playing bingo as opposed to some other online games is that you have the option to get talking to other players in the bingo site chat rooms. All the bingo sites host chat rooms and each one is connected to a different set of games. While you’re playing your chosen bingo game, you can talk to any of the other players who are entered into the same game as you. It doesn’t even need to cost you anything; you can join a UK free bingo site and simply start playing a few games, entering the chat rooms and seeing who you meet.
Bingo chat rooms are a great place to meet people as there’s always a chat moderator present to make sure everyone in the chat room feels included. There are also mini games that you can play while you’re there, and that adds to the general buzz. If you hit it off with a particular person, you can always send them private messages, so you don’t have to share your conversation with everyone else. Of course, as with any other acquaintances made online, if you do get friendly enough with someone when you’ve been chatting while playing bingo to meet them in the real world, you should be very careful about how you set up that first meeting. It’s a good idea to meet in a public place and take a friend along with you.
The gym is somewhere you will encounter a whole range of different people, but at least you know that most of the people you meet there will have at least one thing in common with you – an interest in keeping fit and looking after yourself. You may not think that you’d make new friends when you’re all hot and sweaty, but if you’re exercising correctly on any of the gym machines, you should be able to hold a conversation easily while you exercise, so you can strike up a conversation with anyone working out on a machine next to you. You also might be able to start working out with someone, which will help motivate you both and encourage you to reach your next fitness goal.
At the school gate
If you have kids, you’ll probably have already discovered that children are great ice-breakers. It’s far easier to move to a new town if you have children who are in primary school. That’s because you generally end up dropping them off and picking them up at the school gates and you’ll meet other parents this way. We’re not saying you should have kids in order to make new friends, of course, but if you have them already, it’s just another way to widen your social circle!
You won’t make a life-long friend out of every new acquaintance that you make, but there’s no harm in making sure you meet new people every now and then. Friends can add to your life in so many ways and the best friendships can begin in the most unexpected places.
There are a wide range of anti-aging serums on the market and it can be intimidating to chose from many that promise you the world when it comes to looking younger. Among the anti-aging products out there, I have noticed that serums have grown in preference over the years compared to creams.
The main difference between a cream and a serum is that serums don’t include airtight moisturizing ingredients or mineral oils that stop water from evaporating. Serums are water based, eliminating oils all together like nut or seed oils. Truth is, you must understand your skin type to make the right decision whether serums or creams are better for you. Cream or crème is usually better for people with dryer skin and serum is better for people who do not have this issue according to this article.
Among skin care professionals, serums are a popular pick because they work better against oily skin. The lack of oil in the product does not further complicate the problem most people with oily skin face
Another recently popular ingredient among serums is the use of black diamonds. Skin care products such as Alleure’s Anti Aging Skin Crème include finely crushed black diamonds. They are helpful for your skin because they absorb light, which gives your skin a more resilient and glowing look. The absorption of light from these diamonds reduces the look of wrinkles.
The Alleure Anti-aging cream makes good use of the black diamond ingredient. They integrate it well with the rest of the formula they use to create a high end anti-aging serum. What I like about it is that it includes compounds like hydrolized proteins derived from natural ingredients that minimize the look of fine lines on the skin, especially around the eyes. hydrolized proteins, which are derived from plants protect the skin from hormone related damage, balances moisture, delivers helpful amino acids, and provides a very smooth look to your skin.
Although serums are known to be more costly, Alleure Anti Aging cream is considerably less expensive than other luxurious anti-aging serums out there. This is a cost effective product to buy, yet none of the high quality ingredients have been left out.
In conclusion I’m going to be trying this product very soon as I am particularly attracted to the black diamond ingredients in it. If you have used Alleure’s black diamond Anti-aging cream before, I’m super curious to know what your opinion is on this product. I know many people with different skin types are reading so it would be very interesting to see what people have experienced using it. Let me know in the comments below.
Before we get into the detail of the article, I really want to thank the team here for letting me post here with them. It means a lot to be able to get something published for myWedding Blogat great site like this.
She never wears high heels. She doesn’t carry a handbag. She loves Kim Kardashian. She thinks Botox is repulsive. Deborah Ross meets the controversial editor of Italian Vogue, Franca Sozzani
Franca Sozzani is the editor-in-chief of Vogue Italia (“The world’s most influential Italian fashion and style magazine”) and I spent a day shadowing her during haute couture fashion week in Paris. It was a long day, a hard day, a tiring day, a famishing day – no one in fashion eats – but an enlightening day.
We attended “an appointment” with the designer Giambattista Valli and another with Alain Mikli, “créateur de lunettes”. Having never met a “créateur de lunettes” before, I found I was rather stumped for conversation, but I think I pulled it off. And then it was the Valentino couture show, which was fabulously glamorous and exciting, and Kim Kardashian turned up, in the tightest, boobiest, bum-squeeziest dress you ever did see. I knew her bottom was big, I say to Franca as we left, but not that big. “Is massive,” she confirmed. I also noted, at the show, that if you are too far away to air-kiss someone directly, you kiss your fingertips and offer a little, fluttery wave.
I tried this when I got back home (London, N4), when I spotted people I knew on the opposite side of the street, but they just looked at me as if I was insane. The lesson learnt here is that what works in high fashion may not work elsewhere. You just seem mad.
We meet in Paris, at lunchtime, at the Hôtel Costes, which is one of those hotels that is so funky and fashiony that the reception is a bar, or the bar is reception, or there may just not be any reception. I certainly never find it. Eventually, I spot her. She is most striking; like a tiny mermaid doll, with crinkled, long blonde hair and azure eyes that match exactly the azure strap of her vintage Rolex.
I am about her height, 5ft, and, as an icebreaker – a good icebreaker, I had thought – ask if she finds it as difficult as I do to find clothes to fit, particularly trousers, with yards of material pooling at the ankle. “Not really,” is all she says, briskly. She is 64, untouched by Botox, which she finds repulsive. “It make you look like monster. Is not funny.” Do you mind ageing? “Is life,” she shrugs. “It happens.” You’re lucky, I say, to have such wonderful bone structure. I wish I had such bone structure. I’ve got a face like an edam cheese. She does not remonstrate. “Ah, yes,” is all she says. But your nails are terrible, I add, quite meanly. “I bite,” she says.
She is wearing a Giambattista Valli silk dress and tangerine, pointy-toed Manolo Blahnik shoes that are almost flat. She does not do high heels, she says, because “I cannot walk”. She does not carry a handbag, just a little pouch for her phone and keys. “I never carry handbag,” she says. “I don’t have make-up during the day. I don’t know what to put inside.” You’ve saved yourself a lot of money over the years, I say. “Yes,” she confirms. “I have saved myself much money. And now we will go see Valli and Mikli.”
Thank you, Franca, I say, for taking me with you today. If you are ever in London, I add, I will return the favour, and you can shadow me to Sainsbury’s then the post office, or it could be the other way round, depending on where we are in the day. One doesn’t want to go to the post office at peak times. She smiles, almost. I don’t think she is un-warm. It may just be that in an industry in which showing warmth is not valued, you can get out of practice.
We make for her limo. It’s only three steps from the hotel front but it is raining, so the driver collects her with an umbrella, which he holds over her as she does first step, second step, third step to the car. I decide to pay attention from here on in, as I would one day like my own driver with an umbrella. (Take that, N4!)
To my delight, I discover a dog in the back of the limo. This is Laszlo, her West Highland white terrier, whom I make to stroke, but I’m speedily talked out of it. “NO!” she cries. “HE BITE! DON’T TOUCH!” What, I suggest, if I let him sniff my hand first? “NO. I PREFER DON’T TOUCH! HE BITE!” She pulls him onto her lap while I cringe against the opposite door, avoiding his jaws. The traffic is gnarled. She speaks constantly into her phone. (Vogue Italia is about to celebrate its 50th anniversary and she has an exhibition to organise, she later explains.) I am left to watch the raindrops glide down the windows, and to occasionally interject a question between calls.
Which is the greatest fashion house of all time? “There are so many. There are some that really last for ever, like Chanel or Hermès. Prada and Gucci. It is difficult to say one. The point for me is not to make a good collection. The point is to last the years.”
Can anyone be fashionable? Could I? “You can become fashionable but it does not mean you can become elegant. You can have much money to buy the most beautiful dresses but doesn’t mean is good for you. Elegance is not how you dress. Is attitude.” Could I acquire that attitude? “Some people they have and some people they don’t have.”
Do you ever buy your own clothes, or do the designers just unload a ton of free stuff on your doorstep every morning, as I’ve always imagined happens with magazine editors?
“It depend. Sometimes they ask me if I want, but I like to be independent.” Are you a fan of any of the high-street shops? “I like Uniqlo.” So do I, I tell her. “But is not about fashion. Is about basics you can mix with fashion.”
Oh. Gap? Do we love Gap? I’m always in Gap. I practically live in Gap. “Sportswear.”
Franca Sozzani has been editor of Vogue Italia since 1988, and writes an online blog every single day covering everything from the Italian government to eating disorders and creativity. (“A true creative doesn’t need to overdo it, but to show that creativity can be useful and can open new roads …”) I ask, when I can, if she doesn’t get fed up of it. If she doesn’t wake up some days and think: sod the bloody blog. I’m going to say Laszlo ate it. “Many times,” she says. “It is huge work. I get tired. But there is a community of people waiting for this blog and I do not want to disappoint.”
Under her stewardship, the magazine has proved extraordinarily influential. Though its circulation of 120,000 is small (US Vogue sells 1.3 million), its website has 1.86 million page views per month, with half the traffic coming from outside Italy, and Vogue Italia is famed for its controversial images. She has taken on oil spills (astonishing pictures of models as slicks), rehab, domestic violence, plastic surgery (starring a semi-butchered Linda Evangelista) and racism. In 2008, she published an all-black issue which sold out and had to be reprinted. I ask her if the head honchos at Condé Nast ever get on the phone and say: “Franca, what’s wrong with a nice girl in a floaty dress on a swing, or carrying a basket of sweet peas?” She says this cannot happen: “I am editorial director of the group, so I would have to call myself.”
We attend our first appointment with Giambattista Valli, the Rome-born designer who lives and works in a beautiful 18th-century apartment. He is, when we arrive, in a state of great excitement. “I show you something amazing,” he tells Franca. He retrieves a copy of that morning’s Le Monde, which is carrying a front-page photograph from his show of the day before. “For me, is big day,” he says. Apparently, Dior also had its show yesterday, “but I am on the cover. Dior is not on the cover. Amazing!” I give a little clap, I’m not sure why. I think that may be the other fashion lesson I learnt: when in doubt, clap.
Franca and Valli sit and catch up in Italian, so I mooch among his rails. Astonishing dresses. Dresses with vast feather trains. Dresses covered with fabric 3D daisies. They may be the most fabulous dresses I have ever seen, and must cost a bomb. May I have one, I call over. “No,” says Valli. Please? “No,” he repeats.
I mooch back and ask if they consider themselves visual people. “Yes,” says Franca. “I have always been a visual person. Don’t ask me for a name. I just remember people and how they dress and what they wear.”
Valli says he studied art and his trouble is he knows too much about art; that in fashion, knowing about art can only lead to suffering. Or, as he puts it: “Sometimes, to be too cultivated is limited in the contemporary fashion panorama.”
“I agree,” responds Franca. “Everything is going so fast people don’t understand what they are doing.”
“There is,” continues Valli, “no time for the digestion. Everything is skin deep. So if you do something a little more intellectual …”
“People, they don’t get,” Franca concludes, sadly.
This seems to make them gloomy, so I wonder if I should do more random clapping, to cheer them up, but then opt for changing the subject altogether. I am fascinated as to how they might deal with everyday life. So I ask if either of them cook. I’m already quite hungry (a croissant on the train at 7am; no lunch), and it’s probably what’s on my mind. Here’s how that goes:
Valli: “She can dress the table, but not the food.”
Franca: “I love to dress the table.”
Valli: “My grandmother say to me you just have to learn to do one thing the best. It’s enough. I have been living in Paris for 17 years, and I think I maybe ate 8 times at home.”
Me: “Your oven must be very clean.”
Franca: “I don’t like the smell of cooking in the house.”
Valli: “If it’s a summer holiday house, it can be nice to have that tomato sauce smell, but that is holiday.”
Franca: “That is different.”
Valli: “You don’t want all the smells.”
We watch Valli’s show from yesterday on his laptop. I do not have to do the clapping, as Valli himself does the clapping. I ask if they agree with Vivienne Westwood: that people should buy less, but buy better. Buy one good item rather than ten crappy ones. “Yes,” says Valli, “but people do not know what is the good thing, unfortunately.” He sighs dejectedly. Franca sighs dejectedly. I sigh dejectedly (don’t want to be left out). Then we leave, are umbrella-ed back to the limo, where she’s back on the phone so, again, it’s a matter of quickly getting questions in when I can.
Is Anna Wintour as scary as she looks? “She is very good mother. She loves her children.” You don’t ever get bored of clothes? Don’t you ever think: enough with the skirts, already? “Is always evolution.” What was your first experience of fashion? “My big love, when I was 17, 18, was Yves Saint Laurent and, later, Biba. I was crazy about Biba.”
Franca Sozzani grew up in Mantua, in northern Italy, where her father was a mechanical engineer and her mother did not work, but was chic. “She was very classic. Not so many jewellery, even in the evening. She was not wearing the make-up. Only lipgloss.”
Franca studied philosophy and languages at university, but did not expect a career. “I never thought to work. It happened because I got married at just 20 and I got separation after three months. I wanted to do independent.” You got married at 20? What were you thinking? “Probably, I thought we have beautiful party. I knew I didn’t want to get married any more, but it was too late. I went too far. It was decided. I thought it was a way to be independent. I was too young.”
Her first job was at Vogue Bambini, and she rose from there. Later, she briefly married again, and had a son, Francesco Carrozzini, now 31 and a photographer based in New York. You married again? “I think maybe I think another beautiful party,” she says.
She has, I discover, houses in both Milan and Paris, travels extensively, and I get the feeling she is through with men. Do you like to go out socially? “I no like to go out if it isn’t for work.” Are you ever lonely? “Yes.” I don’t quite know how to respond to that. There’s a silence, until I eventually say: well, who’d want you, with your terrible nails? She laughs, which may mean I’m getting somewhere. I’m not sure. Her big love is Laszlo, whom she bought on impulse, and adores. It’s her first dog “and I did not know I could care for a dog like this”. He sleeps on the bed? “Of course.” I am minded to ask if Laszlo wouldn’t be better tempered if he wasn’t cooped up in a car all day, but don’t want to show myself up. He’s a dog in the fashion world. This may just be how it is.
We visit Mikli, then it’s the show, with all its clapping and fluttery finger kisses. Valentino himself is there, as well as Kim Kardashian, who, it turns out, is a friend of Franca. “I went to her wedding.” Tell me, tell me! Tell me, now! “Nice wedding.” She is a big fan of Kim. “She is a nice girl and she knows how to behave and move. She’s an intelligent girl. Some people do not agree but they do not know her.”
We watch the show, which involves models stomping the runway like dead-eyed corpses. That’s what I think I saw, anyhow, but I may have been hallucinating, from the hunger. Still, I say to Franca afterwards, no black girls? Why? “I don’t know.” There must be a reason, no? “I don’t know.” Come on, I say, you’ve devoted an issue to this subject, so you must have thought about it. Is the fashion industry simply racist? “No,” she says. “Not at all. Lazy. Not racist. Absolutely not.” Possibly, if you are an image-maker, the image is everything, and the rest just gets rather lost along the way.
To the limo again, as she has kindly offered to drop me at my hotel. The limo glides. The raindrops slide down the windows. Laszlo eyes up my throat. It’s 8pm and I’m exhausted. “I’m exhausted,” I say. “The couture is not so tiring,” she says. “The prêt-à-porter. That is tiring.”
As we part, I thank her, then dash to my hotel room where I make for the minibar and mainline the peanuts and then the Japanese rice crackers and then the Pringles and then the cashews – I end up with snack dust all over my chin. Other lesson learnt, and it’s an important lesson: eat before you go …
This post was contributed by moneysavingblog.org who is a regular poster both here on their own blog. You can catch them on twitter, facebook or even their very popular youtube channel.
The excitement is almost palpable as you start to look in stores at engagement rings and browse online sites. Rows of sparkling stones set in precious metal, each one calling to you to be your lifelong choice to show your commitment to the one you love.
Unless you already have a very set idea of what you’d like your ring to look like, or you’re having a custom-made ring crafted, the selection can feel overwhelming.
However, take a deep breath and spend some time thinking before making a rushed decision; you don’t have to buy the first one you see and if you know a little more about the different styles available, you’ll have a better idea of how to narrow down the ones you’d like to try on before making one of the most important choices of your life.
The diamond solitaire is the most popular style for engagement rings. A simple band of perhaps yellow or white gold, diamond rings Houston by Whiteflash.com will certainly show you the reason why this style continues to be the number one choice for so many.
A solitaire diamond ring is designed to show off the beauty and rarity of a single diamond to its absolute best. It’s about seeing the facets glitter and sparkle in the light with it raised delicately above the finger. Owning a solitaire ring means you’ve chosen a design classic which will always look amazing alongside any other rings you wear – whatever their design.
A style which first became popular in the 1920s, Halo rings – and their statement cousins the Double Halo rings, are now the hottest design in town.
A Halo ring encompasses a tightly enclosed gemstone which is then surrounded by a ring of smaller stones, or in the case of a Double Halo, two circles and this statement ring will usually have a round or princess cut stone in the centre. Owning this style oozes undoubted sophistication and elegance.
Three stone rings
Three stone engagement rings are highly symbolic; they represent ‘yesterday, today and tomorrow’ and as well as being the perfect choice for an engagement celebration, they are also popular as eternity rings.
Three stone rings appeal to many people because of their general aesthetic look. They are also a practical choice for those who don’t want a particularly raised stone; often related to their working life where a stone set at height may become snagged in clothing or on equipment.
The range of three stone rings is huge and so there’s the opportunity to find one which has very personal appeal. Some are very simple designs with the stones cut in a clean-looking way and some are very ornate with the design extending to the band. There’s also the added option with a three stone ring to have all the diamonds the same size and shape in a row alongside each other of for there to be a raised stone in the middle which may be a different size or cut.
Choosing your diamond ring is a major decision so thinking about your lifestyle, your personal tastes and perhaps other jewellery you’ll regularly wear alongside it will all help you to hone in on the ring which really stands out. You’ll know exactly the ring for you when you see it catch the light in a way which outshines all the others around it – it really will be calling your name.
For many people, the opportunity to get their hair cut is not just about a quick trim – it is a step out of a busy day or week. It is a chance to relax, switch off and simply enjoy being pampered. Modern, unique hairdressers in Lichfield offer a hair cutting experience that is more than putting on the cape and taking a seat…
It starts from the moment you walk through the door…
In fact, you could take a step further back than that. A great hairdressing experience starts with the moment you make contact with the salon, whether that’s using the online booking facility that works without a hitch or the conversation you have with the receptionist.
It needs to be sleek and welcoming, professional and friendly. The service should be prompt and with a smile. Just as you would expect turning up at a high class hotel where you will be spending your hard earned money, you should be attended to immediately. Not left loitering by the door wondering when someone will come and ask you why you are there.
And don’t think that just because a salon is busy that is an excuse! Popular, trendy salons will be busy but this should not affect the quality of the service they offer.
The front of house staff and their greeting should be spot on but your stylist should be too. They should be interested in you and what you want; they should listen to you but also make suggestions that may ring the changes for your cut and style.
However, if you do not like their suggestions say so, and do so without the fear of them having tantrum; many people like their hair cut ‘just so’ and are not open to having the latest trend.
The salon ambience
Salons can be busy places. With hairdressers, curling tongs, straighteners, hot water, chemicals and people the temperature can soon go up – and not just in terms of heat but just hoe the whole place feels.
Noise makes people shout; it can make everything seem so much more jerky and disconnected. People walking, slamming things, pushing things… none of this make for a pleasant, relaxing experience. And there is only one thing worse than a mundane hair cutting experience and that is one that feels pressured and zips along at a great rate of knots.
What can contribute to this is the décor too; what does that look like? Dated and peeling? Or fresh and looked after? Not all salons have to be cutting edge trendy, with clear Perspex coffee table and LED lighting – a clean, hygienic yet welcoming décor is just as important. This is essential a personal like and dislike – either you do or you don’t!
You may speak to the receptionist and the stylist but what about the others? Do they all make contact at some point? Are they are all smart and friendly?
Some salons can come across to clients as being so busy that they feel rather lost in the whole scheme of things. The whole place should welcome you!
If you are to be in the salon for a few hours, you may find yourself gasping for a drink but some saloons will offer you one – but charge an extra £2.50 to your bill!
However, the mark of a good salon is when these extras are simply part of the service, form the brides and her party enjoy a glass of champagne as they are pampered and made ready for their big day, to the person enjoy a pamper session as a gift. Or to the busy lady who is having her haircut and enjoying a hot beverage as part of the session.
Looking at reviews of some of the top hair salons across the UK, it seems that customers appreciate many nuances to their visit;
- A genuine, warm welcome and a smile all ranked highly when it came to trying a salon for the first time and for those customers who are regulars.
- For those people opting for a new style they appreciated the gentle honesty with which the stylist and their team asked about their hair and their chosen new style
- What was also important to many customers was the lack of criticism when things had clearly gone wrong with the previous cut and colour…
- The range of magazines for people to read whilst they waited for their appointment or whilst their colour was being applied etc. The magazines need to be recent and appropriate titles for the salon.
- Many people liked the idea of being able to pinpoint hairstyle from a variety of sources to show stylists, making use of online facilities in order to access ideas such as http://www.beautybloggers.org/top-summer-hair-styles-keep-trend-summer/
- Customers also rated the hair washing experience highly, enjoying the head massage and it being unhurried and enjoyable
- The feeling that the team knows that feeling good about their hair, is something that many people enjoy and should enjoy
- And not feeling guilty or a nuisance when the customer asked for something to be changed…
Having your hair cut should be an all-round relaxing and enjoyable experience, not hurried.
The way single people meet and begin relationships has been changed dramatically by the wondrous plethora of online dating sites readily available to the masses. And it can be argued that these changes, that have brought a whole new dimension to dating, may have occurred for the better.
The days of drunken initial meetings in bars and clubs have long been banished, and replaced with online communication from the comfort of your own home with people you have more information on that simply what they look like, what alcohol they like to drink and how dodgy their dance moves are. It seems that love, or the possibility of it, is reachable with a few clicks of a mouse and taps on a keyboard…
Right, so maybe it’s not as easy peasy as many dating sites may claim on their somewhat cheesy TV adverts, but online dating is definitely worth a try, and perhaps the tips below will help increase your confidence and chance of success…
1. Be honest when writing your profile.
Honesty is always the best policy when it comes to your online dating profile.It’s easy to feel pressurised into adding fake hobbies and interests to your profile just because everybody else seems to have loads and because you don’t want to appear boring. Doing this will only create problems and potential embarrassment in the future when somebody quizzes you on your profile.Remember, you deserve someone who likes and wants you for the person you are, not the one you’re pretending to be.
2. Don’t be put off merely by a photo.
Although it’s most likely the majority of people will have selected the most flattering photo they can find for as profile picture, in reality, some people simply don’t take a good photograph. It’s well worth keeping this in mind if you come across someone online who shares your similar interests and hobbies and who you enjoy interacting with, as, should you choose to meet face-to-face, you may find yourself attracted to them in person.
3. Consider beforehand what you feel is important in a life partner.
It’s wise to explore beforehand what you’re looking for in a potential life partner before you begin interacting to people on a dating site. One fab thing about online dating is that, technically, you’re in control of finding a partner who possesses exactly – or near enough – what you want. Although nobody is 100% perfect, with online dating it’s possible to control, at least to a degree, the specifics you find desirable, for example, the level of partner’s education, their income, whether they smoke, drink or want (or have) children. Although these things might not matter in the short term, they can become sources of conflict and deal-breaking issues in the future, so it’s well worth considering what you want or don’t want so you can find somebody who matches you and your needs in the most significant areas.
4. Get your friends and family to help.
Writing an online dating profile can be really tough, especially if you’re extremely modest or shy, or perhaps even suffer from low self-esteem in this type of arena. If you’re finding it tricky to list your positive characteristics, ask your closest friends and/or family to help! This may help you to identify and actively acknowledge your most positive qualities, and it may even give you the confidence you need to write great things about yourself.
5. Try not to be embarrassed about meeting a partner online.
Gone is the traditional stigma attached to online dating. So many people have taken to the Internet to find love, practically everyone knows someone who’s tried it, and many of us know people who are in lasting relationships, and even marriage, having found partners online. With the unsurprising rise in popularity of online dating, it’s hardly shocking that the stigma has been all but entirely eradicated in recent years.
Furthermore, consider it this way: it makes so much more sense for people to meet in a way that allows them to consider physical attractiveness but, simultaneously, match less superficial requirements, for example, interests, lifestyle and important life priorities, than for people to meet in drunken, intense environments where physical attraction is virtually the ONLY factor under considered.
This post was written by Becky Stretton, author of the parenting blog, Green Duo. Visit her blog to read all about Becky, her husband Steve, their new baby daughter Phoebe-Rae and all their adventures in their green, eco-friendly household.
One of the most enjoyable parties I ever attended was my friend Samantha’s casino party. We had a blast playing games, gambling with fake chips, and spending the night laughing and eating delicious food. Casino parties can be so much fun if done right, especially those that go all out to create the right atmosphere. With that in mind, here are a few guidelines to plan a chic casino party that your friends will never forget!
1) Casino-inspired invitations
First things first – send out gorgeous casino-inspired invitations for your guests. Make sure that they aren’t boring and blab – a white page with text just won’t do. Your guests should be excited about the party and it’s the invitation that will get them there. There are gorgeous casino and poker party invitations available on sites like Etsy. You can also make them yourself, of course, if you feel up to the challenge.
2) Learn the rules and set up the games
Nothing worse for a hostess than to set-up a wonderful casino party, only to have no idea how to play any of the games. It’s your responsibility to ensure that everyone is up to speed with how casino games are played and how the evening’s gambling will work. Whether you are setting up tables for poker, putting up fun online slots games on screens, or even if you have an actual roulette table to play with, if you and your friends don’t know how to play, it won’t be fun. Inform yourself! You can go to wwwOnlineCasino.ca to read about the rules and develop your gambling style in preparation for the party.
3) Décor & ambience
One of the most important aspects to your party will be the decoration and ambience you create. When your guests come over, they should be leaving the mundane routine behind them and entering a room that has been transformed into a fun casino party. To do that, you can use the classic colors of red, black and white (for the chips) to decorate around the room. If you feel like doing some DIY, you can create posters shaped and decorated like cards, poker chips, dice, and even Vegas show signs.
4) Casino themed food
If you love to bake and cook, this is a particularly fun way to add some interesting elements to your party. You can bake cookies in the shape of cards or casino chips, make a beautiful cake decorated with casino elements, serve shrimp aligned on a cocktail cup, or any interesting ideas you can think of. You can even make ice cubes in the shape of spades, hearts, diamonds, and clubs! Pinterest is the place to go to find the best casino-themed food items… but beware – you will be submerged into a world of amazing recipes and ideas and you may want to make them all.
5) Dress up
Your invitation should tell everyone to dress appropriately for your casino night. What constitutes appropriate attire wear for a casino party? Well, really it’s up to you and what you envision for your casino night. You could have all the gentlemen and ladies dress very formal, you could ask them to dress as if they were heading out for a fun night in Vegas, or maybe you would like a 1920s inspired casino party. Either way, dressing up will bring the party to a whole new level. Watch how all your guests will feel submerged into the fantasy of being into a casino – it’s a lot of fun!