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· Fashion Notes: Trekking through Etsy
· Fashion Notes: A Mom pendant
· Tech: Improved post thumbnail capture
· Fashion Notes: Labradorite necklace
· Just Notes: What I've been into, lately
· Fashion Notes: Earring synergy
· Culture Notes: Samantha Bee on The Daily Show
· Tech: We now have a label cloud!
· Culture Notes: Election 2008
· Fashion Notes: Something I've been fiddling around with
· Just Notes: It's Sunday--take a survey!
· Beauty Notes: Skincare thoughts
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· March 24, 2008 9:25 PM by Carol
· March 24, 2008 9:51 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 19, 2008 10:34 PM by Dain
· March 20, 2008 2:18 AM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 17, 2008 11:12 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 19, 2008 2:38 PM by Duygu
· March 19, 2008 6:51 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 14, 2008 10:02 PM by Dain
· March 14, 2008 11:38 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 15, 2008 7:42 AM by Dain
· March 15, 2008 7:43 AM by Dain
· March 15, 2008 1:48 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 15, 2008 2:20 PM by Dain
· March 15, 2008 8:27 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 15, 2008 9:14 PM by Dain
· March 16, 2008 11:27 PM by Dain
· March 17, 2008 11:21 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 12, 2008 6:52 PM by Dain
· March 12, 2008 9:26 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 14, 2008 1:08 AM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 13, 2008 11:07 AM by Dain
· March 13, 2008 11:55 AM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 13, 2008 12:38 PM by Dain
· March 14, 2008 12:59 AM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 5, 2008 4:41 PM by Dain
· March 5, 2008 8:53 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 5, 2008 9:08 PM by Dain
· March 5, 2008 9:30 PM by Colleen Shirazi
· March 2, 2008 5:11 PM by Dain
Recent blog posts:
The Powder Group
Dain's Literary Attempts
Colleen's Beading Blog
Colleen's Adult Acne Blog
Eponym Blog Directory.
The Lipstick Page Forums Beauty & Fashion Blog: March 2008
Fashion Notes: Trekking through Etsy
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, March 24, 2008 8:23 PM (Eastern)
Back when I was fiddling around with these:
...it wasn't the norm to make earring frames. Standard practice was to buy readymade frames, attach stones and call it a day.
Lately however there's been a bit of innovation in handmade earring frames. I was scrolling through Etsy last night, looking for ideas for spiral earrings, since I had it in mind to make some.
One of the nicest merchants I stumbled across was the Nina Rossi Jewelry site:
Fleur de Lis chandeliers spiral amethyst brio earrings
Gizelle Swarovski . Black garnet 14k gf hoops earrings
Part of the fun here is "How did she do it?" but I'm seeing a lot of square wire, with fine-gauge wire "soldering" the pieces together. Really dig her combination of herringbone weave and beaded bezel techniques to frame the black garnets.
On to the Natural Jewels shop:
These examples have a slightly more rustic flavor (though she has pieces on the site which defy gravity). I love how she used graduated shades of hessonite to produce a vivid, yet also subtle, line of color.
Kelly Lyn Raspa:
Got a bit sidetracked here, but what a killer heart pendant. She has hammered skull earrings breathing fresh air into the skull motif, a ship necklace, and much more.
Finally, the spiral design I was seeking, at Jewelry by Natsuko:
Mind you, I'm not going to duplicate these exactly. But they are the perfect spiral, balanced off by longer "stems."
Fashion Notes: A Mom pendant
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, March 19, 2008 7:32 PM (Eastern)
This is difficult to photograph. It won't stay still when it's on, which is the point of it (lots of movement, catches the light).
This is one of the few odd sentimental pieces I've made; each stone has a meaning. I have my kids' birthstones on top, and small stones to signify the years I've spent with them. The tiny sapphire heart is for the blue sky, the smooth citrine coin is for the sun, the moonstone is for cloudy days (I have some with blue flash but didn't use it here), and the aquamarine is for the sea. These are all symbols of my happiest memories with them.
It actually has two tiny chains at the end, not one. I'm sort of debating about the chains; one is old, from a shop I no longer go to, and one is new. It seemed a bit trite to cut the chain off altogether from the end, so I cut it and reattached it, and added the small piece of old chain.
Tech: Improved post thumbnail capture
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, March 17, 2008 8:29 PM (Eastern)
It looks as if our friends at artViper have improved their screenshot script. In exchange for a modicum of branding, they now capture screenshots of posts with videos in them.
At least I hope that's what's going on. I manually recaptured the thumbnails that would recapture, and queued the rest, so it's going to be a while (likely a few days) before I'll be able to see if the new script works consistently, but it looks promising.
Fashion Notes: Labradorite necklace
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 7:52 PM (Eastern)
I had to lean at a funny angle to take this pic, because I wanted to capture the "schiller," or "flash" in the stones (which did sort of work). Otherwise the stones do hang properly. This is more accurate:
I'm still fiddling around with this, though I like it on this chain.
It's occurred to me I gravitate toward Indian stones. Not just the stones, but the Indian cut. There are several different types of cuts; most of them more precise than Indian, but that's why I like it.
Just Notes: What I've been into, lately
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Friday, March 14, 2008 4:54 PM (Eastern)
Once in a while I'll get sentimental, and start googling for pictures of my home town. I haven't actually been there since the mid-1980's, and can't for the life of me recognize it anymore, save for this:
...which is genuinely nice; they built it right before I left. There's a long walkway in front of the Elizabeth River, and lots of little shops and restaurants in the blue-roofed structure facing it.
But this is what caught my eye: it's divine!
The U.S.S. Wisconsin3
The Nauticus Museum didn't exist until I'd already gone, and I'm drawing a blank as to what was there before (I want to say ships and tugboats, the kind of tugboats those bad kids used to jump on and explore coughs). Now they have this, and the battleship U.S.S. Wisconsin. Now I feel like buying a ticket. I'd love to see the inside of that ship.
Oh well...further hoop development:
These are a rougher grade of sapphires. You'll note the double loop at the top; it's much better that way. Compare this earlier incarnation of the same hoop:
With the single loop, I had to hammer the wrap. Though it's not an area of great stress, the thought of the short wire popping out...ugh.
1. Norfolk skyline by Thestearninator.
2. The Waterside, a small shopping and entertainment facility in Norfolk, Virginia. Photo taken March 11, 2003 by Ben Schumin.
3. Although there are no active battleships in any navy as of 1992, the United States Navy still maintained for a decade and a half two mothballed battleships--Iowa and Wisconsin--(berthed at Nauticus National Maritime Center in Norfolk, VA) and could recommission one or both of them if needed. Since the 1950s the United States battle doctrine has called for air superiority, which clearly favors the aircraft carrier, but other weapons such as guided missile ships and destroyers also play a significant role. In May, 2006, Wisconsin and Iowa were stricken from the Naval Vessels Registar and placed on donation hold for use as museum ships.
Fashion Notes: Earring synergy
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, March 12, 2008 2:51 PM (Eastern)
A venture into one of Dain's ideas of combining two contrasting stones. Here is citrine and labradorite, utilizing Eni Oken's herringbone weave (based on "french beaded flower techniques" and basketry).
I didn't have soft wire in this gauge on hand, and didn't feel like waiting to get some (with six or more gauges, two commonly-used tempers and two or three metals involved, I feel fortunate if I do have the exact wire on hand), so went ahead using "half hard." Hence the appearance is less basket-y--the soft temper would enable more exact placement of the wire--and more like the sloppy bun I happened to be wearing in the pic. :D
These, and some previous earring endeavors:
...mark my first conscious attempts to make earrings that work with a specific hair color.
Earrings are generally regarded as a "facial accessory," and often the advice is to choose pieces which work with your face shape, and possibly your hair style and length...but the cosmetic aspect, the idea of earrings as a form of makeup, is a bit underplayed in my opinion. It's well to try earrings on in front of a full-length mirror, in the same way you would model a jacket, as well as using a customary hand mirror; it's as much about what the composition can do for you, as it is about the composition itself.
Culture Notes: Samantha Bee on The Daily Show
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 2:28 PM (Eastern)
Canada's Samantha Bee has been the top comic on The Daily Show for quite some time. In fact, if I think about it, she's easily as funny as Stephen Colbert, with her unique blend of squeaky cleanliness and depravity (where Colbert is funny almost by default, in the usual Southern paper-cut style).
If this doesn't make you spew your tea, nothing will.
Tech: We now have a label cloud!
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Monday, March 10, 2008 8:42 PM (Eastern)
It's on the front page: The Lipstick Page Forums
Culture Notes: Election 2008
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Wednesday, March 05, 2008 4:30 PM (Eastern)
rotfl! You've got to love New York.
I signed us up for a RedLasso account. It isn't the veritable Youtube I thought it would be, but it's not bad. You get feeds from some of the bigger news stations, plus Comedy Central and, of all things, E!. You may then make your own clips.
Fashion Notes: Something I've been fiddling around with
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Tuesday, March 04, 2008 1:08 AM (Eastern)
So I bought three smooth London Blue topaz "pears." And a sample of oxidized sterling silver chain.
(London Blue is just a loose classification for "deep" blue topaz. Swiss Blue is lighter, Sky Blue the lightest of the three. These colors typically are produced by heat-treating topaz. Oxidized silver uses chemicals to darken "bright" silver; usually areas of the piece are then polished to highlight them, though it's trendy now to leave more of the piece dark.)
The block of four photos:
Upper left: The first version involved cutting the chain into four pieces and joining them by passing a sterling wire through each pear and wrapping it to the section of chain. I've seen this done many times and somehow thought it would be a snap. Not so; one of the pears proved to have a very small drill-hole. Though it is possible to ream out the hole to make it bigger, I don't own a bead reamer (and there are several kinds of these), and I'm not sure of the risks of reaming out such a stone to begin with. What if you chipped the hole?
Hence, the wire I used for that stone was quite thin. Wrapping the stone directly to the chain...the link needs to be reasonably strong. Plus, there was a level of stress on the wire where it joined the stone. Bend it back and forth a few times and the wire would break.
Upper right: Back to the drawing board. Decided to join the chain using heavy gauge sterling wire, which is very strong. My daughter decreed this design to resemble "three people with garnet hair and blue faces" or "vases with flowers in them." Interesting, but a bit too much frou-frou here.
Lower left: Elected to try constructing a long drop in front with the garnets. Not bad, kind of eccentric really, but ultimately I felt the garnets were too much.
Lower right: Tried shortening the drop.
Top center pic: Finally, it occurred to me to revisit the original concept of three blue stones. What's satisfying here is the sheer strength of the construction; even with the thin wire, the wrap is pretty sturdy (the new style with two loops at the top).
Is this the final design? Only time will tell. It's rather like eyeshadow in the sense, what looks great in the pan is not always the shadow you end up wearing day by day, and the shadow which strikes you as ordinary, or hard to wear, can end up a staple. It takes months sometimes to determine the usefulness of something you make. It's quite different from making something to sell, where the priority is the sale.
Just Notes: It's Sunday--take a survey!
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, Sunday, March 02, 2008 6:31 PM (Eastern)
Admit it...you're goofing around today. You did the laundry, read your usual beauty & fashion blogs and boards, listened to your playlist (how did I ever live without this?) and now you're contemplating whether to clean the bathroom or try to find something more fun to do.
Why not take a survey?
There's no money involved with this survey, or a prize, but I have taken it myself. It's actually a lot of fun. It's for this guy's dissertation, so, in an odd fashion, it is a way of being heard. The irony would be if only the people already obsessed with politics took the survey, as:
The purpose of this survey is to examine how people think and feel about the political issues, parties, and candidates in the upcoming election. In the survey, you will be asked a series of questions about two political candidates, John McCain and Hillary Clinton. We are very interested in how individuals that find information on the web think about politics, and your participation would be greatly appreciated. In total, the survey should take about 15 minutes to complete. The survey is completely anonymous and you can skip any questions you do not wish to answer.
Click here to take the survey:
Please feel free to contact Chris Weber (email@example.com) at Stony Brook University with any questions or concerns. Thanks for your help!
Okay ladies...and we are not to comment about the survey, in order to not bias the responses of other participants.
Labels: just notes
Beauty Notes: Skincare thoughts
Posted by Colleen Shirazi, 12:37 AM (Eastern)
Oh well, I broke down and bought Dr. Hauschka's Cleansing Milk today. My local health food store now carries this brand, thus negating the need to travel to Berkeley. I experienced a small pain in the wallet as I bought my Milk, and wondered if an earlier casual remark--that a dollar spent on good skincare meant saving at least five dollars on everything else--held much water. And decided there was something to it.
I'd run out of my usual evening facial cleanser, the (in)famous beauty-board darling, Johnson & Johnson Head to Toe Baby Wash, a while back. That's when I started using a sample of the Hauschka Cleansing Milk, and realized its odd, almost greasy whitish lotion was good for my skin. Less acne, fewer flakes, softer texture, all-around expensive skincare goodness.
When I'd squeezed the last drops from the sample tube, I was left with nothing, and started washing my face with some tea-tree oil soap. Now this was not good for my skin. Makes a great hand wash, but, face-wise, I was beginning to see pimples. Pimples are depressing enough in their own right, but are particularly disturbing to those who have been to acne hell. Signs of returning to hell...eh...not good.
But, five dollars on everything else? What would I be spending $169.75 on? How long is this cleanser going to last? My Hauschka Cleansing Cream, purchased mid-January, is less than half-way used up. Let's be optimistic and say it will endure three months (I use it only once per day in a pea-sized blob). If the Cleansing Milk can do the same, that's $169.75 over three months, or $56.58 per month. It is conceivable I'd be tempted to spend $56.58 in a month, depressed over having lousy skin. Hermmm...