July Birthstone & Fun Facts

July Birthstone & Fun Facts

Today in Texas, it’s 100 degrees outside and you feel every bit of that heat when trying to run from the car to any air conditioned building. The month of July is just red hot and that is shown even with the birthstone…red hot ruby!

 

 

Rubies are precious gemstones that derive their name from the Latin word for red, “ruber”. They are one of the most prized gemstones and sometimes even dominate over diamonds. Rubies are mentioned several times even in the Bible and are usually associated with wealth, vitality, and love.

 

“The gleaming ruby should adorn, all those who in July were born,

For thus they’ll be exempt and free, from lovers doubts and anxiety. “

-Unknown

 

Rubies are part of the corundum family, so is sapphire. If fact, sapphires come in all colors and when they reach a certain color of red, they are called rubies. Rubies are a 9 out of 10 on the Mohs hardness scale, second only to diamond.

 

Check out this GIA breakdown on all ruby info:

 

GIA

 

Rubies are not only July’s birthstone but also the anniversary stone of choice for the 40th year. They are also a traditional gift for the newly engaged….or you could knock out both the engagement ring and engagement gift and get your love one of these gorgeous ruby engagement rings. Having a gemstone engagement ring has become widely popular since Prince William gave Princess Kate her sapphire engagement ring. The ruby can handle being worn every day and the color red is a color that compliments a wide range of other colors.

 

 

 

July Fun Facts:

~National ice cream, pickle, picnic, hotdog, and blueberry month

~The national days for Canada and France also occur in July like the United States’ Fourth of July

~The long hot days in July are also referred to as the “dog days of summer”

~Julius Caesar’s birth month

~Seven US Presidents have died in July which is more than any other month

~Zodiac signs are Cancer and Leo

~Birth Flower is the water lily

~Famous July birthday holders: Tom Cruise, Dalai Lama, Tom Hanks, Ringo Starr, and Liv Tyler

 

Happy Friday and if you happen to see a jewelry piece from today’s blog that you love, be sure to take advantage of our summer sale. Visit our Etsy store by clicking here, and use coupon code: SUMMERTIME25 at checkout for 25% off your entire order!

 

Minimal Always Wins: From unicorn drinks, baby/wedding showers, to accessories

Minimal Always Wins: From unicorn drinks, baby/wedding showers, to accessories

 

“Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance” ~ Coco Chanel 

 

Who can argue with Coco Chanel? Not me, I totally agree with her. Something about simplicity or the more modern term “minimal”, just never goes out of style.

 

As I visited Starbucks a few days ago, I noticed that in the store and on social media people where in uproar over this strangely colorful, over-complicated, borderline poisonous, unicorn drink. I ordered my regular tall cold brew with almond milk. My simple drink order got the attention of the barista. She asked, “you’re not falling for the unicorn craze today?” Nope, not me. She followed that up by, “well you won’t regret drinking this simple brew in a few hours like the hundreds of unicorn partakers will.”  Fads are fun, fly by night trends are intriguing but the simple classics will always dominate even in the coffee world!

1492632553-starbucks-unicorn

 

As the rain showers come down, our family is preparing for a baby shower and a wedding shower soon. My favorite registry place is Pottery Barn for both babies and weddings. They specialize in such classic, minimal, timeless, yet functional and chic gifts. This reiterated to me again that the elegance of simplicity cannot be matched. Here are a few of my favorite showers gifts for any couple or occasion.

Click Here to Shop These Baby Gifts & More 
Click Here to Shop These Wedding Gifts & More 

 

My husband and I are moving and will have to be living out of our suitcase for a few weeks. I was packing and trying to prepare for different occasions, have the right shoes, accessories, etc; I went back to minimal, classic, mix-and-match pieces. Here is what is in my suitcase:

Floral print maxi dress from amazon (doesn’t wrinkle, was perfect for Easter and the upcoming shower)

floral maxi.jpg

Click Here to Shop the Dress

 

Tory Burch sandals (comfy yet dressy enough to wear for any occasion)

sandals.jpg

Click Here to Shop the Sandals 

 

Jeans with solid color t-shirts (these mix and match pieces can be dressed up or down with jewelry and different shoes)

 

My jewelry consists of a statement necklace, simple necklace, bold earrings, and diamond studs (these 4 pieces again have me covered for virtually any occasion or outing)

Click Here to Shop These Items & More Gorgeous Pieces 

 

Having a simple wardrobe has allowed me to not over-stress about over-packing or having too much scattered throughout the hotels/houses we are staying at for the next few weeks. I can concentrate on family time, site seeing, house hunting, and good food.

 

I would love to hear how you have simplified your life and how it has impacted you (for the good or bad). Thank you for reading and Happy Friday!

 

 

Gifts and Accessories Under $100

Happy Black Friday! Did you wake up to an alarm at 3am or did you choose to just fight a crowd at 7am? I’m not sure if droves and droves of people really do the whole Black Friday “spend-the-night-in-the-parking-lot” type of craziness anymore. I even read that some retailers are just opening an hour earlier and that is it. I’m good with that. I like my sleep and have never really gotten into the whole madness of a one-and-done Friday after Thanksgiving shopping day. The only time I have been Black Friday shopping was with my mom one year, after dark, around 7pm. We went to JCPenney. The sales associates were restocking the racks, shelves, and displays for the next day. The same deals were going on and the store was empty. My mom and I took our time, browsed around at our leisure, and walked out with some amazing deals.

I am more of a cyber Monday shopper. Maybe because I like the idea of sitting in my California king bed, with a big cup of coffee, listening to CMT music, cuddled up with my dogs, and my laptop. I also love to shop with small boutique shops and have really found myself shying away from regular mega retailers. Supporting a small business online or buying from a stay-at-home mom designer makes me tick. The first place I look for gifts in on Etsy. It is just a whole world of regular people just wanting to showcase their talents or found treasures. I love the personal touches and feeling like I am a valued customer and not just another number. Maybe that is because I work for an Etsy store and we care about each individual customer. We have established relationships with folks all around the globe. We are part of special engagements, gift wrap keepsakes for surprise birthday presents, and even have return customers that we get to know personally over the years. We value our customers, each and every one. Our goal is to make each sale special!

This week I wanted to compile a list of a few gems that I have found under $100 on Etsy. These would make lovely gifts for a loved one or just a unique keepsake for yourself. I hope you find this helpful and keep in mind that Etsy is filled with one of a kind stores that are ready to help you find something amazing!

I will start with a few items from our boutique. Jewelry (like Paris) is always a good idea:

This lovely necklace is only $79! Click Here to view the listing.

Christimas ER.jpg

These Christmas inspired earrings are $99. Click Here to view the listing.

These lovely diamond studs are $99. Click Here to view the listing.


Scarves are my favorite winter time accessory. Check out some of these:

Scarf.jpg

Click Here to view the listing.

Click Here to view the listing.

scarf 4.jpg

 Click Here to view the listing.


Personalized items are very popular this year and they make the gift receiver feel special.

sign

Click Here to view the listing.

apron

Click Here to view listing.

Click Here to view listing.


Here are a few options for hostess gifts if you are wanting to give something to a family member that is hosting Christmas this year.

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Click Here to view listing.

Click Here to view listing.

Click Here to view listing.


Another gift-able idea is a DIY gift craft set. This would be perfect for a family with kids or maybe a teenager who is really into design or crafty things.

diy

Click Here to view listing.

DIY 2.jpg

Click Here to view listing.

diy3

Click Here to view listing.


Lastly, we don’t want to leave out our beloved men folk. Here are a few Etsy finds for them as well…(he’s actually won’t be that hard to shop for)

Click Here to view listing.

Guy gift.jpg

Click Here to view listing.

 Click Here to view listing.


I hope this helps open your shopping spectrum to online boutiques on Etsy. If you have a shop and want to be featured on our blog please let us know! We would love to help out a fellow designer or store owner. Happy Shopping Friends!

October Birthstone ~ Opal

My favorite month is upon us and with it brings one of nature’s most glorious gemstones that has a “play of color” phenomenon effect! I’m referring to opals!

opals

Photo Credit: http://mineralia.tumblr.com/post/96719262954/themagicfarawayttree-beautiful-purple-and-blue

Opals are a freak of nature, literally. The “play of color” I mentioned earlier is what happens when light hits an opal and a colorful display of iridescent hues radiate from its core. This amazing occurrence leaves most of us mesmerized and wanting more. That is why some opals have a higher price tag than some diamonds.

opals 3.jpg

Photo Credit: http://www.kalledjewelrystudio.com

You have probably heard that opals are very fragile and can’t be enjoyed or worn often. Opals are delicate, but not as susceptible to breaking as you may think. They have about the same fragility as glass. So when you wear your prized opals just remember this comparison. Wearing them in earrings or in a necklace are a safe way to be able to enjoy them daily.

opals-2

90% of opals are found in Australia. But, thankfully, you don’t have to endure a 21-hour flight to get your birthstone or your favorite colorful miracle stone. Check out a few of these treasures…

Click Here to View Listing for Earrings    Click Here to View Listing for Pendant

There are many, many different kinds of opals: black opal, jelly opal, agate opal, angel skin opal, white opal… just to name a few.

opals-4

Photo Credit: http://www.geologyin.com/2016/06/types-of-opal-with-photos.html

Opals are just so easy to love! Happy Birthday October babies and lucky you for having such a celebrated birthstone. :o)

Never Going Out of Style

I’ve compiled some classic favorites that will never go out of style. Some things I think we can all agree on; some are just my own personal “ride or die”. I would love to hear from you, so let me know if you have something (no matter how random) that will never go out of style.

 

1)      Kindness/Love

I will say first off, that a smile will never go out of style either. A smile is the most basic universal sign language and will go a long way no matter where you are. Psychologist William James said that a smile could actually make you happier (I’m paraphrasing). This could possibly help trigger your desire to show love and kindness to others. Kindness, love, a smile ~ these things are always in style and can change the world.

happiness

Photo Credit: https://stylescientist.wordpress.com/2013/12/29/being-fashionable/

 

2)      Chicken Noodle Soup

I know this one isn’t as profound as kindness or love but we all know that chicken noodle soup is not only good for a cold but for the soul. I’m pretty sure there are books out there on this topic :o)

Chicken Noodle Soup.jpg

Click Here to View Recipe From cookingclassy.com

 

3)      Grilled Cheese

While we are on the food train, I have to mention my go-to Sunday night favorite. Grilled cheese and tomato soup will always be in style. They may be the red lipstick or little black dress of easy meals.

Grilled Cheese.jpg

Photo Credit: http://sugarintherain.tumblr.com/post/36495984342

 

4)      Little Black Dress (LBD)

You know there cannot be a classics list or “never out of style” list without the LBD. Centuries ago even up to today, check your Pinterest, LBD’s are here to stay! (yes, that did rhyme!)

LBD.jpg

Photo Credit: http://www.polyvore.com/night_out

 

5)      Diamond Stud Earrings

I feel like I am always mentioning these in my blogs. Diamond studs are my “ride or die”. (Someone please tell my hubby that I need a bigger pair!!!). They just go with everything, they are suitable for any occasion, they are the perfect gift for any occasion. They are just perfect!

 

Click Here to View Listing for Diamond Studs

6)      Solitaire Engagement Ring

I tend to get stuck in a trend (that’s a pun!) of grouping like items together. The round diamond solitaire engagement ring is a classic and will forever be present in our jewelry marketplace. Tiffany & Co started this with their six prong classic many, many moons ago. It is here to stay folks!

diamond-solitaire

Click Here to View Listing for Diamond Solitaire

7)      Brooches

Yes, I’m still on the jewelry train. This one may get some disagreements but I am sticking with my guns. Brooches are so classy, so versatile, they just have to be always in style for this girl! If you think I’m off my rocker check out this article about different ways to wear a brooch…you might just fall in love with them too!

brooch

Click Here to View Listing for Brooch

brooch article.jpg

Click Here to View Article on Beautiful Ways to Wear Brooches

Photo Credit: http://glamradar.com/beautiful-ways-to-wear-a-brooch/

8)      Big Red Barns

This is a random one but check out these photos and tell me otherwise that this look will not always be glorious!

Red Barn.jpg

Photo Credit: https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/ba/b3/cd/bab3cd646ff6735f623f29b30ca4c880.jpg

Barn.jpg

Photo Credit: http://weddingsabeautiful.com/2013/09/15/22744/

 

9)      White T-shirt & Jeans

Forever in style! No matter what generation, no matter what shoes or accessories, this outfit will always be an easy classic. Put a white shirt with colored jeans, layer a long sweater over the tee, boots or heels, boyfriend jeans or skinnies, this look has it all covered!

White tee.jpg

Photo Credit: https://www.facebook.com/AmazingOutfits.page?ref=12610&

white tee 2.jpg

Photo Credit: http://www.shopstyle.com/action/loadRetailerProductPage?pid=uid6704-516052-92&id=472140360

 

10)   Reading a good book

Reading will never be out (especially reading my blog :o) . My dad always said “readers are leaders”. Here is my favorite childhood book and grown up book. I’m also including a 2016 reading challenge book list for my fellow book worms out there.

 

book challenge.jpg

Link to Book Challenge by Popsugar.com

 

So this list is getting a little long but if you want to see more of my list, head over to our Pinterest (Click Here) . Thank you so much for reading!

Fall Must Have List

1) Black & White Striped Long Sleeve Shirt

I don’t really know if this is just a fall must have. I am obsessed with a basic striped tee for summer or fall. It is so versatile. You can pair it with black leggings or jeans. It looks great layered with a floral shirt under it or a vest on top. Here are a few styling photos to help inspire you. There is a fabulous long sleeve version online at Nordstrom’s for less than $30!!!

black-striped-tee

Photo credit: https://www.slant.co/topics/3955/~long-sleeve-or-3-4-sleeve-breton-stripe-shirts

black-striped-tee-2

Photo credit: http://wachabuy.com/75-fall-outfits-to-copy/


 

 2)  Peep Toe Booties

These little beauties are prefect for us living in Florida or the Mid-West. They transition easily from summer to fall and look cute with virtually anything. Here are a few of my favorites!

 

peep-toe

Photo Credit: http://www.makeupandbeautyblog.com/fashion-2/toms-majorca-peep-toe-bootie/

peep-toe-2  Photo Credit: http://www.hellofashionblog.com/2015/03/theperfectspringshoe.html#comment-38022


 

3) A blanket scarf ~ with some plaid preferably

I’m obsessed with blanket scarves. If you are sitting around a campfire, the sun is setting, there is a little chill, your honey is making you a s’more, and you take your gorgeous blanket scarf and wrap it around your shoulders…that is just pure fall bliss!

 

blanket-scarf

 

Photo Credit: http://www.stylishwife.com/2014/09/stylish-fall-outfits-for-women.html/2

scarf

Photo credit: https://waysof.life/article/60-of-the-most-popular-fall-outfits-on-pinterest-1#P2ntIsB7bc


 

4) Gold Stud Earrings

My hair gets tons of static once the seasons start to change. I find myself usually turning to my tried-and-true messy bun or French braid. This makes way for some bold statement earrings. I like wearing studs so they don’t catch on my scarf or hat. Check these out…

 

heart-studs   red-studs

Click Here to View Hearts

Click Here to View Ruby Studs


 

5) Floppy Hat

These are not only trendy but keep the snowflakes out of your eyes (if you have to worry about such things). They come in all different colors and give a boho yet polished vibe.

hats

 

Photo Credit: http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/nordstrom-floppy-wool-hat/3955165?mr%3AreferralID=NA&mr%3AtrackingCode=9AC441C9-232B-E511-80F7-0050569419E4

 

floppy-hat

Photo Credit: https://www.society19.com/best-fall-outfits-to-copy-right-now/


 

5) Green Stackable Rings

 

I tend to gravitate to all black, grey, and white attire during the fall and winter so a happy splash of color is a good thing. Green is one of my favorite colors and stackable rings are the best thing since pumpkin spice latte. Here’s a few examples. Stack ‘em up!

green-ring

Click Here to View Emerald Ring

 

green-rings

Photo Credit: http://www.polyvore.com/sweetlime_rings/thing?.svc=pinterest&utm_campaign=default&.src=share_android&id=172844803&.embedder=3162416


 

6) Burgundy Lips and/or Nails

I love this color pretty much anytime but fall/winter is the best time to break out some new lipstick in a rich shade.

lipsticl

Photo Credit: http://www.maccosmetics.co.uk/index.php

nails

Photo credit: http://www.herbsandoilsremedies.com/2013/07/10-unusual-uses-for-nail-polish.html


Be sure to follow us on Pinterest to see our other fall must-haves! Happy Friday!

 

What “Vintage” Means To Me…

My grandparents live on a small cattle farm in Florida. There is a little cobblestone drive that leads to the side of the ranch style, brick house, where the garage is. On Saturday mornings when I was younger, we would go over for some of my Papa’s pancakes. He was a cook in the US Air Force and can make pancakes that are so sweet and cake-like that you can almost feel your teeth rotting. As a kid, these were my absolute favorite! Nanny would make bacon, grits, and eggs to go along with these pancakes. (There is no such thing as a simple, small meal on a farm.) I would watch my Nanny scurry about the kitchen that she had cooked in for over 40 years, it was like a well rehearsed dance. She was always dressed to the nines, even on a Saturday morning at 8am, her ruffle apron covering her blouse. She had a gorgeous wedding ring that would sparkle even when caked with pancake batter and she always had great earrings on. She didn’t believe in having “naked holes” or no earrings. Her hair was short and permed and the perfect style to showcase a pair of statement earrings. She was always so put together and beautiful to me. Even the neighbors who would come by early for coffee before starting their day, knew that Nanny would be up, dressed, and ready to receive them.

On the days that Nanny and Papa went to the flea market to sell old tools and other amazing vintage finds, she would still be decked out it all her jewelry. With her diamonds glistening in the Florida sun, she literally didn’t sweat, she sparkled! She was a believer in being thankful for what you had, enjoying it, and not letting it just sit in a box and collect dust.

I guess you could say that “vintage” is not just a type of jewelry style to me, it’s memories of days passed, it’s the smell of pancakes sitting around a farm table, it’s excellent craftsmanship, and it’s pure elegance. Now that I get to work in a place that has tons of beautiful, nostalgic, well-made vintage pieces, I get obsessed with all the amazing jewelry we have to offer. Our boutique has everything that is precious about the word vintage to me. Each piece has been carefully cleaned and inspected. Each piece is photographed to show its beautiful details. Each piece is ready to be a part of what vintage means to you! I’m sure you will be able to find a piece that brings back some memories of childhood. Or maybe you will find a piece that just speaks to you and you’re ready for it to come home with you and be a part of your kids’ and grandkids’ memories. Each piece is ready to become a keepsake for you and generations to come! Here are a few of my favorites!

ring

A ring like my Nanny’s in our Etsy store… click here to view listing

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A right hand ring similar to my Nanny’s…click here to view listing

Diamond earrings that remind me of the antique ones that I loved as a child…click here to view listing

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Gorgeous Art Deco vintage watch…click here to view listing

One of my favorite antique brooches…click here to view listing

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These RARE Tiffany & Co Diamond Earrings would be my Nanny’s new favs…click here to view listing

One more cluster ring that I love…Click here to view listing