Why does silver tarnish?

Women can prevent silver from tarnishing.Silver is one of the most beloved metals out there, and for good reason. Silver jewelry is often inexpensive, easy-to-find, and lovely pieces are created from the metal all over the world.

However, there is one drawback to silver – it tarnishes. That’s when it turns browns and black. Aside from detracting from the beauty of the pieces, these marks can also stain one’s clothes.

So, how does this happen? Unfortunately, the process of tarnishing is natural. When the metal is exposed to air, it causes a chemical reaction known as silver sulfate. Sulfur is always in the atmosphere as the result of burning fossil fuels.

To prevent this from taking place, much of the silver sold today is covered with a thin protective layer of rhodium. This process, known as flashing, also keeps silver jewelry whiter, brighter and shinier. So it’s a win-win situation.

Women who adore their silver pieces can also take further steps to prevent tarnishing. Storing your jewelry in air-tight bins protects them and inhibits the chemical reaction.

Lastly, those who have already noticed their silver tarnishing can also clean their lovely pieces. Women can use a polishing cloth or even take their items to their local jeweler, who will clean them on a Buffing Wheel.

Jewelry lovers can even make use of a home remedy by boiling water in an aluminum pot and adding baking soda. The froth that is created from the process can be applied to the tarnished silver.

It only takes a small amount of time to wind up with beautiful pieces. Isn’t the extra effort worth it?ADNFCR-2807-ID-19839479-ADNFCR

Fashion Advice From: Nurses

Safety and style are what nurses look for in jewelry
Safety and style are what nurses look for in jewelry
Nurses are an integral part of the health care system. They really keep it humming. My aunt Camille has been a nurse her whole career and now supervises teams of nurses. I recently asked her about what she and her co-workers wear for jewelry on the front lines of health care.

So, I bet that wearing scrubs all the time gets boring. How do nurses add sparkle to their work wear?
Well, not all nurses work on the floor or directly with patients. There are some nurses who don’t wear scrubs but the ones that do have a hard time adding a personal touch. Wearing protective gloves means that you really can’t wear big rings. Depending on the protocol at the workplace they might even require that nurses not wear rings at all. Our main goal is health and safety for everyone we care for – even ourselves! I think that earrings are probably the best way to add a unique touch.

When I started working in nursing almost 40 years ago we had to wear all white – you know the traditional nurses uniform. These days there are all kinds of patterns in scrubs and professional team wear that keep things from being too boring. I was recently in a pediatrician’s office and all the nurses there had on scrubs that the kids there loved.

Are there any trends in earrings that you’ve noticed on the nurses you work with?
Diamond stud earrings have always been popular. I think that anything small and conservative is a good bet. Dangle or long tear drop earrings aren’t safe or suitable for the professional setting. You want to have earrings that are easy to keep clean.

What about down time? What about Friday night?!
Ha! Are you kidding?! Lot of nurses work 12 hour shifts and they’re pooped when the work is done. Just like lots of other women, they work hard for their families when they get home. On special occasions though, when they can have a night out, the nurses I work with love to be pampered. Something special like bold gem earrings – or a long necklace is a lot of fun. They want to wear something that is normally off limits at work.

Put a ring on it (a necklace that is)

Wear a ring on a necklace for a change.Can two accessories become one? If you’re the proud owner of too many rings and not enough fingers to sport them, they can. One of the trends making its way to the masses now is rings worn as charms. It’s simple to pull off, just take a ring, throw it on a chain and wear it like a necklace. Think of it as an impromptu pendant.

Made famous by Sex and the City’s Carrie Bradshaw – the iconic fashionista who donned her diamond engagement ring around her neck in a bunch of episodes – we’re spotting this fashion “do” more and more these days. It’s an easy-breasy way to stand out in a blasé crowd.

For people stumped on how to take this trend by the reins, we recommend swiping your favorite ring and the most beloved chain from your jewelry box, put them together and see what happens. For work, start with something simple like a silver or gold band on a unique chain. Just make sure not to mix and match the two types of metals – unless you’re feeling bold!

For evening soirees, use a sexy diamond or a sparkling gemstone to draw attention to your face. We guarantee placing a bold ring on your collarbone will attract more attention and praise than when it’s worn on one of your digits.ADNFCR-2807-ID-19664989-ADNFCR

Nameplate and initial necklaces making waves

Initial necklaces are all the rage now.Juliet once asked her beloved Romeo “What’s in a name?” When it comes to looking like a stylish girl on the go, we say everything.

We hope most women are happy with their moniker at the moment. That’s because the nameplate is back!

Once a revered trend in the 90s, this statement necklace has been resurrected from the fashion graveyards and given a second chance at life. More and more dapper women have been seen baring their IDs loud and proud lately and we’re pleased to report the fad is “in” again.

Whether you’re looking for a diamond-studded necklace or a girlishly gold pendant, you can purchase this gorgeous number in a variety of colors, sizes and prices. Women with lots of cash to spare or even those on a budget will find they can easily partake in this craze.

But, because sporting your whole name can feel a little too much like wearing a name tag, we recommend wearing an initial-only necklace. Gorgeous celebs like Kim Kardashian have taken advantage of the trend – the dark-haired beauty has been snapped by shutterbugs showing off a daring gold “K” pendant.ADNFCR-2807-ID-19664995-ADNFCR

Fashion Advice From: Teachers

Teachers don't have look like schoolmarms!
Teachers don't have look like schoolmarms!

Next to parents, teachers may very well be the most important people in our kid’s lives. They care for them five days a week for almost 10 months out of the year. Teachers can teach us a thing or two about a professional yet easy care style.

I recently sat down with my teacher friend Robin (she’s 37) and asked her about her casual chic style. Here’s what she shared with me:

What’s one piece of jewelry that you think is a “must have”?
Other than my wedding rings, it has to be earrings. I think it’s good to keep earrings classic and simple. I generally stick with smaller diamond or pearl earrings – nothing too dangly or flashy. I want to be taken seriously by parents and co-workers. More conservative jewelry helps me do that. I have a pair of sapphire earrings my husband gave me for my birthday one year that I wear all the time!

Do you ever feel that you slip into the “schoolmarm” look?
Ha! Teaching is fast paced and you have to be ready for anything. So expensive and fancy clothes will just get ruined. No high heels here! I think that be taking fresh fabrics and a more sporty approach keeps me from looking like a fuddy-duddy.

What about necklaces?
Well, long necklaces are problematic. If you lean over students to check their work, you can hit them in the head with a long necklace! I wear a diamond solitaire pendant a lot. It has a shorter chain that keeps it out of the way. I also wear a shorter pearl necklace a lot too.

What about the kids? Do you see any fashion trends popping up in what the kids wear to school?
Well, I am constantly surprised at what parents let their kids wear to school! Seriously, they must be really busy in the morning or have given up the fight. A lot of kids are wearing bright colors and lots of stripes – both are not good for me! Of course girls still love flashy costume jewelry and I have to ask them to put it back in their book bags all the time. I think what I like best about working with young people is their fresh attitude. They mix things up and see the world with optimistic eyes. It’s really the best part of my job – the kids.

In Like a Lion

Black Diamond Sterling Silver Aries Pendant
Black Diamond Sterling Silver Aries Pendant
Do you know the origin of the weather proverb about March, “in like a lion, out like a lamb”? For most locations in the northern hemisphere, the average temperature at the end of the month is higher than at the beginning (more gentle than the biting, fierce winter), so the proverb typically has some meteorological truth to it. But where did it come from?

The phrase apparently has its origins with the constellations Leo, the Lion, and Aries, the ram or lamb. It has to do with the relative positions of these constellations in the sky at the beginning and end of the month.

Under the tropical zodiac, the Sun is in the constellation Aries roughly from March 21 to April 19, by definition beginning at vernal equinox or the first day of spring.

If someone in your life has a birthday between March 21 and April 19, you should consider a zodiac glyph pendant as a unique and memorable birthday gift. The black diamond sterling silver Aries pendant pictured here is beautifully rendered in brushed and polished sterling silver and highlighted with dazzling enhanced black diamonds. It is truly budget friendly at only $125.

If black diamonds are too racy for you, consider this Aries pendant delicately cut out of a brushed sterling silver disc and with a single accent diamond for just a touch of sparkle. A zodiac pendant is a thoughtful keepsake she is sure to love.

Time for Saint Patrick’s Day Fun

Saint Patricks Day is right around the corner!
Saint Patrick's Day is right around the corner!
Don’t get pinched this Saint Patrick’s Day; be sure you’re wearing some green! While an entire green outfit might make you look like a Christmas elf rather than a harbinger of spring, it’s easy to add just a touch of green with the right accessories.

You could really get into Saint Patrick’s Day with a clover design sterling silver pendant. Polished green agate and diamond accents in this pendant won’t pinch your wallet either at just $85.

When lots of folks think of green jewelry they think of emeralds. Emeralds have a beautiful, intense and radiant green. The green of the emerald is the color of life and of springtime. They’re definitely a great way to add green to any outfit this spring.

For a fresh and modern look this Saint Patrick’s Day, you could try a less traditional gemstone like green chrome diopside. Lush green tones sparkle gorgeously in this elegantly unusual diopside pendant. While perfect for springtime, this pendant’s bright green color will carry you right into sunny summer days. Honestly, it would even be a great choice for parties. It’s definitely a versatile piece for your jewelry collection.

Celtic Cross for St. Patrick’s Day

Delicate Celtic cross pendant
Delicate Celtic cross pendant
This St. Patrick’s Day Celtic Cross jewelry would make a fine gift. A Celtic cross is a symbol that combines a cross with a ring surrounding the intersection.

The early Celtic stone high cross is generally in the form of a normal cross with a ring joining the arms. In Ireland, it is a popular legend that the Celtic Catholic cross was introduced by Saint Patrick or possibly Saint Declan.

It has often been claimed that Patrick combined the symbol of Christianity with the sun cross, to give pagan followers an idea of the importance of the cross by linking it with the idea of the life-giving properties of the sun. However this theory is now thought unlikely by most art historians, who think an origin from crosses carrying a victor’s wreath around their intersection is more likely. Such a cross is found on the reverse of the Liudhard medalet from Canterbury in England in the 590s. Making the Celtic cross an ancient symbol.

The ideas of eternity make the Celtic cross jewelry this a great gift for your bride-to-be or for anyone with Irish, Scottish or Welsh ancestry.

Locket Jewelry Hers and His!

Sterling silver polished locket cufflinks - a great gift!
Sterling silver polished locket cufflinks - a great gift!
The one piece of jewelry that is so incredibly personal to anyone that owns one is a locket. Lockets have been around for hundreds of years and during all that time they have been used for many things. Lockets are generally associated with pendants that are worn on a chain (it keeps the charm close to your heart), but lockets were often used on a ring as well.

Today even men can wear lockets – as cufflinks. Timeless and sophisticated, these elegant cufflinks show of the classic beauty of sterling silver to perfection. Gleaming silver is exquisitely crafted into a dramatically simple design that requires no outside adornment to take away from the pictures he chooses to place inside.

In the past a locket was used to carry around small things that had some value to the wearer. Medicine could be kept inside them as well as poison! Lockets were also used by those who held certain beliefs in herbs and like charms to ward off evil and sickness. The hair (a lock!) or ashes of loved ones was often kept inside a locket as one of many items kept as a keepsake.

Lockets were often used to put a miniature hand painted picture inside. These tiny images of the person inside were very tedious work, but done by an expert artist the result was a beautiful work of art. In the past hundred years or so is when the most popular use for lockets developed so to speak. Placing photographed pictures inside them became their most common use and photos could be had by almost anyone.

The Victorian era was an extremely popular time for the locket. They used the locket for a jewelry piece as much as for their storage capacity. The heart locket was very fashionable. These lockets were made in some very elegant ways. Monogramming a locket was one way to personalize the piece even more. They could be set with gemstones or pearls and the finest metals were used for making them. Although in the past lockets had been made from all sorts of metals such as copper, brass, platinum and silver amongst others. Antique and vintage lockets are very collectible for jewelry lovers.

Lockets are still widely available today and can be bought in many styles. The techniques used for making lockets have improved over time, but they are still delicate, which really only adds to their beauty. They still make as lovely a gift for someone you love as anything you could give them in the way of jewelry.

On the Street: Heart Pendants

Heart Pendants Add Romantic Sparkle!
Heart Pendants Add Romantic Sparkle!

You definitely don’t need a man this Valentine’s Day to make your holiday super special. If the thought of romance turns your tummy, consider doing something nice for yourself. The ladies pictured here are having a fun night out on their own.

Check out the heart pendant on the lady in the middle. She knows that heart jewelry doesn’t have to be sticky-sweet. No, you can use heart jewelry with irony to create a fierce rock ‘n roll look. For the price of a bottle of decent champagne you can get this sterling silver crystal heart pendant – it’s on SALE for just $35.

That sexy, bad girl look only works if you add a little black to your outfit. One way to spice up any occasion is with inky black onyx. A great pick would be this white topaz and black onyx sterling silver pendant. It’s also on sale – priced at just $47.50. This trendy over-sized pendant will help you shine at your next party or special occasion. Its bulky look makes a big impression and gives you that edge without having to take out a mortgage.