Authored by Sheri Cyprus and can also be found here: http://is.gd/QeOQHi
In fashion, a surplice is a diagonally crossed neckline and/or bodice. It is also thought of as a "faux wrap" style and creates a deep v-shaped neckline. This is a fashionable and very feminine look used for women's clothing, yet, ironically, it was inspired by garments worn by men.
Today's surplice style was suggested by the tunic vestment garment traditionally worn by male church leaders in many Western churches. These vestments were, in turn, inspired by the Greek alb tunic and are often white with fairly wide sleeves. The surplice styles made popular in women's fashion are recognizable to the vestments only in the crossover aspect.
Women's fashions may be in the form of T-shirts, sweaters or dresses. The surplice may be just a cross-over neckline that ends before the waist, or it may extend into the bodice of the garment. A faux wrap top or sweater may also have a self-tie at the side to accentuate the wrap look. Some tops that end the surplice at the bust have a band of material at this point that covers the seam and creates an empire, or high, waist.
The surplice, or faux wrap, style differs from authentic wrap styles in that the diagonal front seam is sewn up. In a true wrap top, the seam is not sewn shut, but rather is attached to the rest of the garment with strings or ties to hold the front closed. Sometimes, gaping can occur with the front of the true wrap, which is why a surplice style can be more practical and comfortable that an actual wrap.
Surplice looks are popular in both casual and dressy clothes. Materials vary widely from cotton to cashmere and silk to sweatshirt jersey. Some wedding dresses may either have a front cross-over styling or a cross-over back. The style is flattering to virtually all figure types, and these garments may have long sleeves, short sleeves or be sleeveless for even further versatility.
Authored by Sherry Holetzsky and can also be found here: http://nosax.me/14bKcOb
Whether you are looking for style, warmth, or maybe a little of both, you can find scarves of all kinds, from designer labels to handmade varieties. They can be worn as outerwear or as accessories to complement a particular suit or outfit. Luxurious silk scarves are especially popular as fashion accessories. Aside from silk, scarves are available in many other fabrics and textures, including cotton, wool, rayon, polyester and poly-blends, and even sheer fabrics, which are usually used for headscarves.
If you are choosing scarves for outerwear, look for styles that provide thickness and warmth. These are usually closely knit and somewhat more bulky than the dressy varieties. They are frequently available in sets with matching hats and mittens or gloves. You can select from lush materials such as angora to complement your coat and make a statement, or you can choose a more casual scarf, such as one made from flannel or fleece. There are extra long scarves that can be wrapped around the neck two or three times, while shorter styles are often tucked into the opening of the coat or jacket to keep the neck and upper chest warm.
Selections also include a large variety of fun, whimsical options. You might choose a striped design, trademark characters, or scarves made from shimmering, sparkly yarn. Some have fringe along the ends while others have clean lines, and some are reversible or two-sided so you can create two different looks with one scarf. Hooded varieties are very cute and also provide maximum warmth.
While silk scarves make great fashion accessories, other types do as well. You can find lovely cashmere, angora, velvet or chenille sweater sets with matching scarves. Embroidered scarves are very attractive and work well to dress up a plain sweater, blouse or suit. There are many ways to wear dressy scarves, including several unique ways to tie them. Another option is to simply drape a scarf over your neck and shoulders and leave it loose.
Both fashion and outerwear scarves make great winter accessories and they also make terrific gifts.
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Authored by N Phipps and can also be found here: http://is.gd/zGb1xz
While in the fashion world, the stole is oftentimes confused with the shawl, there are differences between the two. Although each can be used as an accessory to a party dress or gown, stoles are commonly used to cover the shoulders. Shawls, however, are usually designed specifically as a means of warmth in addition to complementing an outfit.
Rather than warmth, a stole is often worn to show off a particular fabric, like satin, or fur, such as white mink. The major difference between stoles and shawls lies in the size and material. Stoles are usually rectangular and range between 2-4 feet wide (61-122 cm) and 5-6 feet long (152-183 cm). Shawls are generally triangular and larger in size—about 3 feet wide (91 cm) and 7 feet in length (213 cm). They are also constructed with heavier material.
Stole material generally includes lighter fabrics like chiffon, silk, and satin; or fur, which is lined with one of the lighter fabrics. Shawls may also be seen in silk fabrics, but are most often knitted or woven from cashmere or pashmina wool. Both of these fashion accessories are available in various sizes, styles, patterns, and colors. Stoles and shawls share similar uses throughout history, but in different ways.
Stoles were originally used as a scarf that hung down the front, often for religious purposes. These were typically dyed or embroidered to denote a particular event, such as the ordaining of a priest. Prior to adding glamor to clothing, fur stoles were actually worn to protect from fleas and lice, enticing them to the fur rather than the hair or body. Like stoles, shawls also served as a protective device, though for the purpose of keeping the body warm. In addition, these too could be seen in religious ceremonies, such as traditional Jewish funerals and weddings.
Additional uses for stoles and shawls exist today. For instance, a stole may be used to indicate the honors or academic achievement of graduates. Crocheted shawls are popular pastimes for many people, especially those wanting to help others. Also known as prayer shawls, these gifts are knitted by caring individuals and then passed onto to others to help ease their suffering with prayers and blessings.
While there are many similarities between stoles and shawls, there are also many differences. Learning how to decipher between the two isn’t difficult; just remember that stoles resemble scarves, only bigger. Shawls resemble triangles most of the time.
Authored by Stacy C. and can also be found here: http://is.gd/tVvari
A fashion collection is a selection of outfits and individual garments that fashion designers put together every season and that reflect predictions of upcoming trends, including color, cut, line and proportion. A collection will usually include a variety of styles, from evening wear to sportswear to outerwear. The cut, coordinating colors and design elements of each style usually tie the items together. It's likely that a fashion designer will have two collections per year — one for the fall/winter season and one for the spring/summer season. The number of pieces included can range from as few as 30 pieces to as many as 120.
After the collection is finished being created and tailored, the designer usually puts on a fashion show. This allows potential buyers, such as distributors or retailers, to see each piece to see if they are interested in buying any of the garments. In the majority of fashion shows, models walk down a runway dressed in pieces from the collection.
Models in fashion shows often wear outlandish hair, makeup, and accessories to represent the designer's artistic vision about the clothing. Each garment itself usually is designed to be functional and appealing to the general public, also known as the mass market, although this can vary by designer. People's tastes change so frequently that fashion collections usually are designed with the idea in mind that the style, colors, and cuts will be out of style within one to two seasons.
Some designers specialize in haute couture, garments made to order for one individual customer. Money usually is no object when it comes to such pieces, and expensive fabrics and design techniques are used. Ready-to-wear collections are a cross between mass market design and haute couture. Although the pieces in a ready-to-wear collection aren't created for individual customers as haute couture is, the designs and price points likely will not appeal to the general public.
Fashion students often have to present a fashion collection as part of their graduation requirements. Successful designers and fashion houses sometimes attend graduate student fashion shows, particularly at well-known art and design schools, to scout out future employees. These schools often are location in cities known for being centers of fashion, such as New York, London, Chicago, and Paris.
We have several collections you may want to view: Alice Yim, Bradley Scott, Juliette Longuet, Kay Unger and many more in our clothing section.
Authored by Malcolm Tatum and can also be found here: http://is.gd/7rKAfM
Created by combining gold with at least one other white metal, white gold is an alloy that is considered to be both attractive and durable. Its qualities make the substance ideal for a number of uses, especially in the creation of jewelry for both men and women. Here is some background on the creation of various grades, as well as a couple of examples of how it is used.
Just as with gold or silver, karats is the means of accurately measuring or grading a particular gold alloy that will be sold as white gold. The determination of the number of karats has a lot to do with what type of white metal is used in the mix. For example, white gold that contains measured amounts of silver or palladium will classify with a higher amount of carats. The presence in nickel helps to give the material durability but can also lead to a slightly lower designation of karats.
Perhaps the most popular application for white gold is in the use of jewelry items. This jewelry includes such items as earrings, necklaces, ankle bracelets, and rings. More recently, white gold has also been used for nose and belly button rings, as well as in the creation of other interesting pins that are sometimes used as ornamentation with cheek or brow piercing.
The exact properties of white gold will vary, depending on the metals that are included in the mix. When it is composed of a gold and palladium mixture, it will tend to be somewhat more pliable, which is ideal for creating settings for stones. The presence of some nickel adds strength that is desirable for the creation of rings and other jewelry that is expected to wear gracefully over long periods of time. In just about all cases, items that are created with white gold are usually treated with a layer of rhodium, which acts as a sealant. The rhodium also helps to protect the finish from scratching and other forms of wear.
Authored by Judith Smith Sullivan and can also be found here: http://is.gd/fp4BKP
Choosing the best two-tone pendants depends on whether you are purchasing the pendant for yourself or for resale and on your aesthetic preferences. Individuals who run jewelry businesses also must consider what their customer base will purchase and whether buying the piece will be profitable. The quality of the piece is always a consideration, but before you begin shopping, you need to determine what you want.
Two-tone jewelry can be metallic or colored. A variety of materials are used to make pendant jewelry ranging from classic gold and silver to enamel, glass, and gemstones. The size of two-tone pendants also varies from tiny charms to pendants 8 to 10 inches (20 to 24 cm) in length. The pendant may also be threaded on a chain, piece of leather, fabric strap, or metal slide necklace.
The quality of the piece should guide your purchase. Unless you're buying jewelry for one time use only or you simply want a cheap version of the latest trend, inspect each piece carefully before buying. Make sure that all bezels and settings are firm and secure and that there are no scratches or dents in the pieces itself. The chain should also be well made and free from damage. Be sure to look at the back of the pendant as this is where shoddy work is most visible.
It is easiest to inspect a piece of jewelry in person. Although Internet websites often supply a number of photos, remember that these photos show the piece in the best manner possible. If you must purchase online, make sure that the website offers a generous return policy, a guarantee of quality, and free shipping both ways.
An very large amount of jewelry is available from both online and brick-and-mortar retailers. If you're buying for yourself, decide what purpose you want the pendant to serve. Often, individuals will purchase jewelry to coordinate with an outfit. If this is the case, look at your clothing carefully and decide what colors and style will best complement your ensemble.
If you're purchasing as a gift, it's important to take the other person's style into consideration. Well-intentioned buyers often purchase something that they like, forgetting that the recipient may not share their taste or preferences. Be sure to keep the receipt because it is better for the recipient to return your present and get something they like than for your gift to remain unworn and unused.
Shop owners and buyers have a different set of criteria when purchasing two-tone pendants. It is important to choose high quality pieces because customers will come to you, not the manufacturer, if they have a problem. Make sure that your supplier has a guarantee in place in case some pieces turn out to be defective.
When choosing for a customer base, purchase two-tone pendants that are pleasing to the eye, but learn to expand your preferences to include what others find attractive. Jewelry shop owners often find that it helps to settle into a niche. This could mean selling jewelry made from a particular material, like copper or sterling silver, or of a certain type, such as handmade pieces from local artisans. Not only will this attract repeat customers who like the style, it will make it easier for you to shop for pieces.
Authored by Jane Harmon and can also be found here: http://is.gd/RlOsEr
A pendant is a type of necklace in which a jewel, fob or jeweled motif hangs on an otherwise unadorned chain. The word pendant is both a noun and an adjective, and can mean 'hanging from something else.' A chandelier, for example, might be described as 'pendant from the wooden beams.'
In the jewelry world, a pendant is either a complete necklace -- that is, the jewel and the chain -- or the jewel or setting alone. Pendants are often sold without chains so that the purchaser can select a chain to suit their needs. Some pendants are made with a pin-back as well as a loop for a chain and can be worn either as a brooch or a necklace.
Dramatic pendants can be made from large single crystals or gemstones with little in the way of a setting, just a simple attachment so that the jewel can be strung on a chain. Other pendants feature heavy worked silver or gold settings with an array of colored jewels in elaborate combinations.
A locket is strictly speaking a pendant. Pendant watches, variously jeweled or enameled or simply made of precious metals or even plastics, go in and out of style.
Many people use pendants to make statements about themselves. A Christian might wear a bejeweled cross, while a Wiccan might wear a pentacle, to announce their affiliation with a particular faith. Birthstones and medallions for various organizations or causes are also popular pendants.
Some people like to wear a particular stone pendant for its metaphysical properties. Folklore maintains that different stones are good for different conditions, or can assist with different life aspects. People may want to wear a rose quartz pendant if they are interested in attracting love into their life, for example. Citrine, a lovely lemon yellow or deep apricot-colored stone, is thought to attract money or enhance prosperity, as well as dispel negativity -- useful qualities indeed! Carnelian, a deep red stone, is thought to help one make decisions, while hematite, a shiny black metallic-looking stone, is protective.
Pendants can be formal or casual, elaborate or simple, costly or inexpensive. Many people just don't feel 'dressed' without them.
For pendants, check out our Amy Zerner page.
Authored by Christina Edwards and can also be found here: http://is.gd/sHwaCW
The words underwear and lingerie are sometimes used interchangeably, but there are a few differences between the two. Technically, all lingerie is underwear, but not all underwear is lingerie. Underwear is worn for practicality and comfort by both genders, while lingerie is typically worn by women because it is attractive. Regular underwear is usually less expensive than lingerie, and it has been around much longer.
Underwear is considered any type of garment that is worn next to the skin, beneath a person's clothes. These undergarments have several functions. They help keep a person's outer garments clean by absorbing sweat and oils from the skin. They can also help keep a person warm in the cold climates, and they often offer some type of support.
Men may choose from among few types of underwear. Boxers and briefs are typically the most common options, along with boxer briefs, a hybrid of the two. These typically offer some support for the male genitals. Women can choose both underwear and lingerie in the form of bikinis, briefs, thongs, and brassieres, which offer support for the breasts.
The French word lingerie actually means underwear, but in English-speaking countries, the term has come to be associated with more attractive or sensual underwear. One big difference between underwear and lingerie is the reason it is worn. Although lingerie is usually worn beneath the clothes as well, it is not usually chosen for practicality or comfort. Instead, lingerie is chosen because it is fashionable or enticing. Women often wear lingerie that they believe will be attractive to their lovers.
Another difference between underwear and lingerie is the price. Generally, regular underwear is more economical. It is typically made from inexpensive cotton, and can be purchased in packs containing a number of undergarments.
Lingerie, on the other hand, is typically a bit more expensive. It is often made from more expensive material, such as silk or lace. Another difference between underwear and lingerie is the intricacy of their designs. Regular underwear is typically quite simple, while lingerie is usually a little more detailed.
The origins of underwear and lingerie are also quite different. Underwear is believed to have been around since ancient times. Historians believe that ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans all wore undergarments. In fact, a loin cloth is also considered to be a primitive type ofunderwear.
In the 19th century, undergarments were typically not spoken of in polite society, and it was bulky as well as unattractive. Lady Duff-Gordan, a prominent fashion designer, decided to change this. She began to design women's undergarments that were smaller, less restrictive, and more attractive. These alluring types of underwear eventually became known as lingerie.
Authored by Cynde Gregory and can also be found here: http://is.gd/8xEouL
Cotton underwear has a number of benefits and a few disadvantages. It is comfortable for most wearers, both because of its ability to breathe and because it has a soft surface that doesn’t irritate most skins. It is a natural fabric and is hypoallergenic. Unlike nylon and other synthetic materials commonly used to make undergarments, cotton does not absorb and hold moisture to become a habitat for fungi; nor does it produce static electricity. However, unless it is treated as a delicate washable, it will stretch out far more easily than synthetic undergarments.
Even when blended with synthetic materials, cotton permits air to pass through it. It is cooler to wear than many other fabrics. It also wicks perspiration away from the skin surface, which keeps the skin drier. This is especially important to women who have a tendency toward developing yeast infections.
Cotton has the capacity to absorb 20% of its own weight. This means that, even when it has carried perspiration from the skin surface, it will not feel damp. In addition, unlike other common fabrics used in the manufacture of underwear, cotton doesn’t pill.
A natural product, cotton doesn’t require a chemical finish to be woven into fabric. Asthmatics and others with skin or breathing sensitivities have far fewer problems with cotton underwear than with underclothes made from nylon, lycra, or polyester. Individuals who do not have allergic reactions to synthetic fabrics or the chemicals used to finish them find that cotton-spandex fabrics combine the best of both worlds.
While cotton underwear lasts well if it is hand washed and air dried, most people want underwear that is easy to care for. Cotton undergarments that are not blended with spandex or another synthetic to help them maintain their shapes can become stretched out very quickly. However, wet cotton fabric is 30% stronger than it is when it is dry; repeated washings will not cause it to wear out.
Among the disadvantages of cotton underwear is the fact that it has a tendency to stretch out unless it is washed by hand and air dried, so the leg openings can lose shape very quickly. Cotton isn’t as smooth as man-made fabrics; it can bunch beneath clothing and show a clear pantie line. Synthetic fabrics can accept a number of surface treatments that change the luster and allow them to hold onto dyes more readily than cotton undergarments can.
Authored by Tricia Ellis-Christensen and can also be found here: http://is.gd/gsaqUc
A monokini refers to several types of women’s swimwear based on the bikini style. In some cases the monokini is merely a bikini bottom, worn without the top. This is the most common form, and is used quite frequently in countries where topless bathing is the norm. The monokini of this type may have shoulder straps that help keep the bottom in place but does not cover the breasts.
A more elaborate type of monokini, which covers the chest, is usually ranked among the sexier swimsuits. Taking inspiration from the bikini, the monokini of this type is a one-piece garment that has large cutouts of fabric over the stomach and most of the upper back. Small chains, straps, or thin pieces of fabric may form a connection between the chest and bottom portion of this form of monokini.
The goal of this swimsuit is to replicate the look of the bikini. This means, that like the traditional bikini, most of the stomach and the back are exposed. Connections between top and bottom often exist on the sides of the garment, giving the bikini look, but providing a little extra security that the garment will stay on.
Like all swimsuits, the monokini bottom portion of the swimsuit can vary in cut. Some have g-string style backs, while others provide full coverage of the rear. The bottom of the monokini may be high cut, reaching to the waist, with high cut legs, or may be a much lower cut, exposing the belly button. In general, people who are comfortable with baring quite a bit of skin might choose the monokini.
Austrian designer Rudi Gernreich coined the term monokini in 1964. His original design was a chest-baring swimsuit. The lower half stopped just below the breasts. Two thin straps constituted the upper half. Clearly, the suit was meant to be worn in areas where topless bathing is acceptable, which is a common practice in many European countries. Ironically, the bottom of Gernreich’s monokini offered fairly extensive and generous cover of the pelvis and rear. Aside from its lack of a top, the bottom portion of the suit would be considered modest as compared to the high cut swimsuit bottoms of today.
It's important to note that many pools and beaches worldwide do not prefer or even permit some monokini wearing visitors. Restrictions may even apply to the type of bottom coverage provided. Be aware of the applicable rules to ensure your enjoyment in the sun and water — and don't forget to apply suncreen to the cutout sections which expose the skin.
For all your bikini needs, check out our Lenny Niemeyer page.
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