December 4, 2016: Hola everyone! Winter has arrived in Milwaukee and there are snow flurries today. Despite several hard freezes remarkably my "spikes" in two of my patio planters have absolutely refused to die. The rosemary and thyme plants I nursed inside the house through last winter spent the summer in their pot outside next to the side stoop off the driveway, where they get plenty of sunshine all day long. I transplanted them into a cozy sheltered spot right next to the stoop in October and they are still green and growing, too! With the delay in getting the drywall patching done in the relatively minor "reconstruction" work I had done in my kitchen, I am way behind my time in getting the house decorated. But yesterday I got my wreath decked out with extra lights and dressed the front door of the house, and my battery-operated traditional candles were put up on the window sills all around the house Friday evening. It becomes a ritual to go around at dusk and turn the tops to the right to turn the candles "on" and at bedtime to go around and turn the tops to the left to turn the candles "off." Today I put some "glittery" throw pillow covers purchased new last month from H&M on three of my sofa pillows to glam things up a bit in the living room and add some sparkle. Later on, after I sufficiently fuel myself up with wine and snacks and probably to distract myself while I listen to the Packers game on the radio, I will huff and puff and pull my artificial tree up from storage in the basement. I will decorate it simply this year. Every year I say that, and every year I end up throwing just about everything except the kitchen sink on the tree. I am very proud of myself this year, though. I did not buy a single new ornament or Christmas doo-dad for the house (throw pillow covers don't count!!!) Happy Holidays to all, with hope and fervent prayers for 2017. I've a feeling we're all going to need a lot of help from Goddess in the coming year. Jan

Monday, November 21, 2011

Bracelets: Make Mine Beaded

One of the women in our investment club makes jewelry in her spare time as a way to supplement her income, and she does pretty well at it.  She attends a couple different events each month and makes a few hundred dollars profit per month. 

Now that's a financial incentive, but I don't have the inclination to make necklaces and bracelets.  My schedule is fully-loaded as it is! 

So, when I attended a neighbor's party on Saturday where Mary Kay products and Just Be Jewelry were featured, I thought hmmmm --

Jewelry making has really taken off, or maybe it's always been popular and I just haven't been paying attention.  While I wasn't interested in the Mary Kay products (I'm loyal to L'Bri products, which work excellently for me and are aloe-based and almost purely natural), I spent a lot of time at the jewelry table.  There were several bracelets in particular that I really liked.  I'm not a bracelet wearer!  I ended up purchasing two to take with me to Las Vegas for presents.  I can only hope my friends like them, but when it comes to things like jewelry, taste is such an individual thing, one never knows. 

You know, I didn't blink an eye paying $18 each for those bracelets, but really, when I think about it, that's outrageous when I look at the stock at Sam Moon, for instance.  Yeah, I keep harping on Sam Moon, but for inexpensive and trendy accessories I don't think there's a better place to buy. 

I know beads and beaded jewelry have been getting bigger and more trendy over the past couple of years.  Those ridiculously expensive charm bracelets made up of individual beads/charms that cost so much -- today's equivalent of beany babies as far as I'm concerned!  I think some of them are pretty but, really, I'm not into wearing a mini-fortune of charms on my wrist that won't hold their value. 
Now, of course, the market has been flooded with fabulous fakes for cheapskates like me :)  Hell, why pay for Pandora if I can buy something I think looks just as cute for under $10 for an entire bracelet?  I'm not above using a purse gifted to me that looks much like a fake Coach bag, so I won't turn my nose up at inexpensive but trendy accessories.  By the way, those bracelets I bought for my friends -- neither of them were beaded but one did have some little mini-pearls on it.

Sam Moon has a huge selection of bracelets; these are just three of many that show the range of the "beaded" look.  They're not Pandora charm bracelets, but I'm not into the charm bracelet look:
Sam Moon:  Filigree Ball Stretch Bracelet
  • .75" Beads
  • Burnished Silver Metal
  • Polished Silver Beads
  • Stretches To Fit Most
$6.99
Item #: 368930
Sam Moon: Multi Bead Stretch Bracelet
  • Burnished Gold Metal
  • Black, Brown Wooden, And Dark Green Beads
  • Silver Faceted Rhinestones
  • Stretches To Fit
$5.99
Item #: 365938
Sam MoonFashion Stretch Bracelet
  • Multicolor Genuine Glass Beads
  • Square and Circle Beads
  • Stretches to Fit
$4.50
Item #: 359796
I selected the first one because I like it's "substantial" look and while I'm not a fan of silver toned jewelry normally, in this style I think it's perfect. This is probably the most traditional looking bracelet - it is symetrical in design.  It has an Indian vibe that I like.

I selected the second bracelet because I like earth tones; I find the polished beads appealing next to the wood, and I like the juxtaposition of the silver toned divider beads with the warmer gold tones. 

The third bracelet is delicate looking and reminds me of something a fairy princess would wear - not exactly sure why; maybe because it looks youthful and fun.  It's a pretty little bracelet for a pretty little price! 

I stopped by at Overstock.com and found many La Preciosa bracelets for sale for under $20.  This is typical of what I saw - I selected this one because I the "black/white" scheme appealed to my chessly sensibilities:

Overstock.com:  La Preciosa Glass Silverplated Black
Glass Bead and Charm Bracelet
$17.99
Item#: 13647571
This pretty bracelet from La Preciosa features black glass beads in various designs that alternate with silverplated beads and a single charm bead. The snake bracelet is crafted of silverplated base metal and secures with a lobster claw clasp.

If you want to buy gold and silver, you can always shop at Pandora :)

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