Life & Reflections

Life & Reflections
Life and Reflections





How to Authenticate Your Antique Diamond Engagement Ring

As if choosing the right antique diamond engagement ring for your fiancée-to-be was not hard enough; authenticating the worth and age of your antique diamond engagement ring is an even more daunting task.

Age before Beauty

When it comes to antique diamond engagement rings, age is not everything although it is most certainly a focal point when verifying its value. Diamonds have been in circulation since 800 BC when they were first discovered in India, yet the most sought-after baubles seem to originate in the Georgian era (mid 1700‘s to mid 1800‘s) and are commonly known as “regency style”.

Starts with C

When it comes to verifying the value of an antique diamond engagement ring, the other traditional values come into play as well; carat, clarity, colour, and cut.

Carat – A metric carat weighs in at 200 milligrams and each carat can be sliced up into 100 points to provide a very clear, concise weight measurement.

Clarity – Internal attributes that affect clarity are called inclusions, while external attributes are called blemishes and together they dramatically affect clarity and value of a diamond.

Colour – Diamond colours range from colourless to light, leaning towards a yellow colour. The value of most gem-quality diamonds is founded strictly on the absence of any colour in the stone.

Cut – With an assortment of cuts to choose from, how a diamond is cut will affect the overall brightness of a stone due to its ability to reflect light through the rock.

Raw Material Testing

When it comes to testing the integrity of both gold and diamonds, there are standardized ways to do so which have been around for centuries.

Gold - Testing gold has been done the same way since before the world’s obsession with alchemy, which is the practice of (trying to) turn metal into gold. Alchemists were never successful although many people pursued the practice much akin to the great gold rush of generations past and the word now rests largely in metaphor.

In order to test gold, the practice is simple; since stamp marks made by the manufacturer can often help although they were not mandatory until the 19th century. Instead, testing gold is best done by exposing gold to acid.

Simply give the gold a little rub against slate and expose the rub-off to acid. If the little amount of gold that rubbed off disappears under the acid, you’ve got fake gold, also known as “fools gold”.

Diamonds - The science behind testing diamonds is much more recent than that of gold testing, and it can also tell a synthetic diamond from the genuine article. The testing of diamonds is facilitated by measuring the speed of which heat passes through the gem, and it is by no means a simple task. We suggest consulting a professional for this one.

Get Help

When appraising the value or authenticity of any antique diamond engagement rings in Sydney, you are still best suited to seek out an appraiser you trust.

Appraisers have a trained eye and are generally quite honest (especially when you are not buying from them directly). Testing gold or diamonds cost a nominal fee at most and it is good practice when you are considering dropping a few pay cheques on a single purchase such as antique jewellery.

Tips for Searching for the Perfect Homecoming Dress

The only thing worse than not being able to find a suitable prom dress is finding one that you can’t have. It could be for any number of reasons; money, stock, sizes... Finding the right dress takes time and above all patience. Be careful of falling into the trap of loving one dress and hating all of the others. There truly is a massive variety of evening gowns out there, so being uncompromising is never a good start. Whether you absolutely have to have a certain outfit, or genuinely can’t find one that you like, here is a guide to make the dress finding journey easier a bit easier for you.

Have an idea of what you want
Do a little research before you go out hunting; check magazines, fashion catalogues and the internet for styles that tickle your fancy. If you already have an idea of what you want, jot down some of the key features of the dress to narrow down your search. There is, after all, no point in going to the shop if you have no idea what you want to buy. Take into account your body type, skin tones and budget. These are the things which will ultimately make the dress right for you.

Give yourself space to compromise
Limiting your choices to fit an exact style will make the dress far more difficult to find, more expensive to make and ultimately raises the chance of a disappointing dress hunt. While it’s good to know what you want, sticking to a rigid plan could end up being unnecessarily stressful. While there is a huge number of dresses to choose from, the designs are not infinite; so being particular could lead to expenses or problems. Know what you want, but give yourself parameters to cross. You might find that the unexpected change you had to make looks perfect.

Be an investigator
So you know what you want, but not where to get it. Where do you start looking? Well, we do live in the 21st century and information is freely available on the internet. Start by looking at websites of different designers, try searching something like homecoming dresses 2015,’ or browse online catalogues of local suppliers and outfitters. There are plenty of them. Be careful of buying dresses over the internet; you’ll want to try them on, maybe tailor them a little bit or see what other suitable dresses the store has in stock. If the dress you want isn’t in stock, many of the designers’ websites will give you a list of outlets they supply to.

Be prepared to travel a little
Unless you live in fashion central there is always the chance that your local options are limited. Scouring the web for suppliers in your neighbourhood will likely not give you as many results as you would like. Pick a radius out on a map from where you are, and explore your options within it. You may find you need to travel out of town to get what you want, but with the kind of money you are spending on a homecoming dress, you’ll want to get it right. So putting in the extra effort should be a necessity.

Good choices take time to make
If you’re anything like me, you’ll leave the search right up to the last week and then likely panic because you can’t find what you want. Take your time and start early. If you give yourself time, you’ll also give yourself more options. If you force yourself to rush your decision, chances are that you will encounter a disaster somewhere along the way. It’s also important to remember not to jump to a decision too readily. Feel it out and see how it works. Think of the pros and cons of the dresses you’re looking at. Consider everything. Settling on the first dress you see might work for you, but you never know which one of the dresses around the corner may have been absolutely perfect for you. Although having said that, there’s no reason to spend an entire year searching for your dress. Fashions change, we all know this. If you take too much time, your options could end up being a bit outdated.


New Sunglasses- Wishlist- Help Me Choose!

I recently just had an eye-test and confirmed that my eyes have gotten worse for wear again. However the optometrist told me I don’t need to update my regular glasses only my sunglasses as the prescription is a few years old now.

So I have been searching online for some sunnies as I find purchasing them online so much cheaper. I usually buy Ray Ban sunglasses however I am of course open to other brands.

I came across the website iFrames, an Australian website which means I can get the sunglasses even quicker- a bonus!

I decided to check out the Prada and Oakley frames for something a bit different. Here are some of my favourites.

1. Oakley Frogskins -These are so cute- perfect for summer!
2. Prada Handbag - Just gorgeous and so posh looking!

3. Prada PR07PS - These are my favourite- can't go past multicolor!

Which one should I pick?


Thinking of Spring

With Spring just around the corner for us southern-hemisphere people, it’s that time of year to start planning not only a Spring clean but also a Spring wardrobe.

Lucky for us the northern-hemisphere tends to have some awesome sales this time of year on just the things we might need. I recently came across and was surprised at just how awesome the sale prices were.
Some of my picks for my Spring (sale) wardrobe include the following items.

1.       Safari dress (pic)
How cute is this dress! Perfect for weekend casual or dress it up for work. I love the khaki style and vivid print.

2.        Boho floral dress
There is nothing I love more than a cute floral dress. Looks great throughout the year, just change from wearing sandals to wearing boots.

3.      Quilt cardigan
The perfect item to throw on when the weather decides to be cooler than usual. A great thing to keep at work for the days when you are just not sure to layer or not to layer.

4.       Samantha denim jacket
Nothing says Spring like a denim jacket. Enough said.

5.       Chambray striped maxi skirt
My favourite item of clothing for the warmer months is always a maxi skirt. You can’t go wrong with this soft and casual number. A great wardrobe staple.

What are your top picks for your Spring wardrobe- tell me in the comments below!