Life & Reflections

Life & Reflections
Life and Reflections





Interesting Facts about Fancy Colour Diamonds

Being one of the hardest and stable substances, diamonds are considered as the most precious gemstones by many people. These gemstones are available in a wide variety of sizes, shapes and colours from which one can choose as per his/her liking and budget. In the last few years, fancy colour diamonds are earning popularity due to various reasons. The most suitable reason of their popularity is that they add creativity and colour to the jewellery. Brief information about fancy colour diamonds is provided here under.


Set a Budget Before You Shop for a Diamond Wedding Ring

If you or your fiancé are fans of celebrity news, you probably have gotten caught up in the extensive pre- and post-wedding coverage. At the heart of each story lies the very same element  -- the diamond engagement ring. Remember that costly and ostentatious doesn’t equate true love. You need only to look at Kim Kardashian and her first husband’s million-dollar plus wedding, which included a very short time worn, but an enormous wedding ring.

Whatever traditions you adhere to, one that seems to cross cultural and economic lines is the ubiquitous diamond engagement ring. The engagement ring is a coveted visual confirmation of a couple’s love and commitment to each other. In other words, few couples get engaged, and subsequently get married, without an engagement ring.

Start looking and researching the available possibilities, and get an idea of what the price range is for diamond engagement rings. It may help you to look at the best diamond wedding rings in Melbourne at Simon West Fine Jewellery.


Unique Cuts of Diamonds That Add Fire

image source

Diamonds have always fascinated humans. Originating from the depths of the earth, the stone is born from a mixture of minerals and molten lava as it rises to the top. Diamond cuts however didn’t start to come into the scene until later in 1866, originating from South Africa.

Ever since that day, the cut of a diamond has been considered to make a big change to its overall beauty and value. Some experts would even say it is the most important element of all the four C’s (clarity, colour, carat and cut). Why is this? Because the shape of the diamond (its cut) can bring to life the shine of the stone due to how it reflects the light. This element will give your diamond ring the fire you crave!

Hunting down a ring with the perfect cut is easier than you think. When looking for unique engagement rings collection in Sydney for example, Delphi Diamonds have a range of diamond cuts.  We have handpicked the best cuts that provide the most sparkle so when you begin searching, you know exactly what to look for.


Do You Know The Difference Between Silver Plated And Sterling Silver?

via Morgue File
Silver, like gold, is one of the oldest metals for jewellery design. Silver is highly malleable and reflective, and has been transformed into everything from mirrors to flatware, but by far its most enduring use is as a personal adornment. Since silver doesn’t tarnish when it is worn, it is associated with purity. Both economical and versatile, silver can be worked into bold earrings, thick chains, or even something delicate. Understanding the difference between silver plated and sterling silver jeweller will help when choosing your pieces.


4 Reasons to Choose a Custom Engagement Ring

If you’re getting ready to pop the question, you may want to consider comparing custom engagement rings vs. ordinary, mass-produced rings. If you have already decided to go down the route of having a unique ring made, you’re headed in a great direction! Custom rings have a variety of unique advantages over the rings you’ll find in most jewellery stores. And no matter what you decide to do, you’re already putting in extra-special effort to find a ring your partner will love, and that is the most important thing.

Why Should You Consider Custom Engagement Rings?

With more and more national jewellery franchises popping up, particularly in shopping malls, and the less faceless online jewellery shops, buying an engagement ring has never been easier. You can see a collection of custom engagement rings in Brisbane online to get an idea why these rings are so in demand!

Buying a mass-produced ring or picking one online is certainly convenient, but what exactly will your soon-to-be-fiancé think? No doubt she has been dreaming about receiving the perfect ring, from her perfect guy, for pretty much her entire life. Just imagine her disappointment when she discovers the ring was purchased from a well-known website, or when she feels the ring lacks the beauty and quality she was hoping for.

By doing your homework to see how custom engagement rings compare to standard pieces,   you are already going to lengths to show her you do care about giving her something very special.

So, let us delve into some of the reasons why custom engagement rings are the way to go.

The 4 Advantages of Custom Engagement Rings

1.      Picking a custom engagement ring will show just how devoted you are to her. When you decide to have a unique ring created, you get to be involved in the entire process, sharing your ideas and making sure the ring will be even more exquisite than she has always dreamed about. This on its own demonstrates a higher level of love and devotion that your loved one is bound to appreciate.

2.      Purchasing an engagement ring from a franchise jewellery store, or a larger chain store, means you are giving your partner a ring that possibly thousands of other people already own. The large jewellery manufacturers churn out rings en masse and make use of driven marketing tactics to sell them world-wide. However, custom engagement rings are built especially for you, ensuring they really are one of a kind.

3.      Custom-made engagement rings are crafted with meticulous attention to detail and quality. When you decide to purchase a custom-made ring from a skilled designer, you are assured that it is created by an expert who has specialised training and experience. You just cannot get this calibre of quality from mass-produce rings, as they will have been created quickly along an assembly line.

4.      An experienced ring designer will care about you, your partner, and helping you woo her with jewellery. Therefore, the designer will treat you with courtesy and respect, as opposed to focusing on a commission. At the larger jewellery stores, salespeople are more motivated by money and the pressure to move items, than focusing on the customer. Their job is primarily to get you to buy the costliest jewellery in the shop, no matter what you would really like to buy. This is probably why some men dread buying engagement rings.

So, if you are looking for the best engagement ring for your loved one, a custom made ring is always the best options. We hope that this article has helped you make a final decision on your purchase.

A Guide to Selecting Men’s Wedding Rings

Maybe you’re envisioning the traditional, flat metal weddings because that’s all you know of. However, nowadays, your ring choices are as endless as your fiancé’s.  We don’t want you to become overwhelmed so keep a few points in mind like fit, durability, metal choice, diamonds, and personalising the ring to your lifestyle.

·         Metal Choice - Gold is still a traditional and popular choice, most often found in 18 carat gold since 24 carat gold is almost too soft to work with.  You’ll find higher percentages of pure gold in 18 carat and 24 carat, but you’ll also pay more. Many couples love the two-tone or even three-tone effect of combining white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold.  If you want a luxurious ring that’s shiny and durable, think about platinum.  While they’re not scratch resistant, they’re specialised in that they don’t lose surface volume if they are scratched.  A subtle matte finish pairs well with platinum, but you’ll have to take care of it.

·         Your lifestyle - On average, men’s weddings rings suffer more wear and tear than women’s because of men’s occupations so keep that in mind.  Are you planning to wear you ring to work every day? Do you work in a machine shop or play lots of sports? Then, you may wish to consider sturdier metals like platinum and watch certain finishes and details because they’ll be more noticeable after you bump your ring repeatedly.

·         Comfort and fit - Most traditional rings feature a squared off interior, which may end up pinching your fingers. That’s why most men prefer the comfort and style of the newer men’s rings, which are more curved and rounded versus flat and square.

·         Diamonds and detailing - Today men’s diamond rings are known as fashionable and trendy versus unusual. Most men’s wedding band’s use diamonds as one of the details in the ring as opposed to the centrepiece in a woman’s ring.  You can view an extensive array of stylish men’s wedding rings and see which one works best for you.

·         Size - If you go to a reputable jeweller, they can measure your ring finger and figure out your band size with no issues. All you need to do is decide on the width of the ring. Generally, you’ll want at least a millimetre between the top of tour ring and your knuckle.  Once you’ve figured that out, you can look at rings and decide if you want a wider one, or a more slender ring.

·         Details - Consider adding some detail and personalisation to make your wedding band unique. Maybe you want to pay homage to your heritage with a Celtic design or maybe you like the look of an 8-band puzzle ring. If you’re fiancé has a diamond and gemstone engagement ring, perhaps you want a bold strip of diamond and gemstones along yours. You can find all these types of rings and more at Ringleaders, a reputable jewellery store in Brisbane.

Now that you’ve selected all your rings, congratulations. You’ve checked yet another thing off the checklist. Wear that ring proudly and have a wonderful wedding day.

Engagement Ring Shopping: Should You Do it Together?

Shopping for an engagement ring is one of those activities in life that falls into the exciting, yet stressful category. It can feel that there is so much riding on the outcome that it’s bound to be fraught with uncertainty. Should you and your beloved shop together for the perfect engagement ring or should you press boldly ahead alone with the selection left completely up to you?

Either way, it’s important to know that what you end up purchasing should be exactly the kind of ring your bride to be has always dreamed of and disappointment must be avoided.

Although the answer may never be absolute, there are a number of pros and cons to consider that can help make the ring shopping question significantly clearer.

Shopping Together

·         Pros

The primary benefit of shopping for an engagement ring together is that your fiancé will be able to choose the exact style of ring she adores with zero chance on your part of making the wrong choice.

Personal taste is a highly individual matter and with such a unique engagement rings selection available, stress levels can often rise when facing the decision alone. There is no accounting for how the slight nuances in different ring styles and settings and can prompt one to quickly fall in or out of love with a certain piece.

Nobody wants to wear a ring for a lifetime that doesn’t really suit their taste or style. Shopping together completely eliminates that possibility.

·         Cons

Buying an engagement ring together rules out the delight that a surprise proposal with a ring already in hand evokes. Introducing practical concerns into the picture often makes common sense, but also kills the ‘wow factor’ that happens with an unexpected proposal.

Life changing events that can be romantically ritualised are rare and these memories become a treasured part of a couple’s story. Planning to buy the ring together takes that opportunity away.

Financial Considerations

·         Pros

Engagement rings can be found to suit virtually any budget and it’s easier to keep within budget when shopping alone. If your lady falls in love with a ring that is more expensive than planned for it can be difficult to say no.

Issues of value, worth, generosity, care, devotion and willingness are all tied into the giving of a ring. These notions can be challenging to process in the heat of the moment with your partner. Shopping alone circumvents these issues and puts you in charge.

·         Cons

Couples make many decisions together in the course of a marriage. Each party brings something unique to the relationship and successfully navigating important choices creates deeper bonds.

Keeping your partner out of the decision making loop deprives you of her valuable input. Your partner may actually be more financially cautious than you and want to rein in your spending.

A more understated, modest piece may be her preference rather than a more expensive engagement ring. Without her participation in the process you are left guessing and hoping that the financial outlay was mutually acceptable, rather than knowing for certain. To browse a great range of engagement ring options, click here to view their page.

Whether you choose to shop for the engagement ring together or alone, be sure to think things through, seek advice from friends and family and read about how other couples have resolved the dilemma for themselves. No matter which shopping choice is made, ultimately it is the commitment to love that will matter most in the end.

Body Jewelry for Conch Piercing

So it has been over 3 months now since I got my conch pierced. I am actually surprised at how quickly this piercing has healed up. I got a double helix piercing done last July and the top one still hasn't healed. I am beginning to wonder if it will ever heal.

So now it is time for me to find some new body jewelry (I'm really liking Fresh Trends) for my newly healed (healing?) conch. I had a few ideas of what I wanted before heading online to check out what is available.

I am really into conch piercings, which have the cute ring, which goes all the way around kind of like this one:

So anyway here are the options I came up with – now to decide which one to get! I often find this is the hardest part especially when Freshtrends stocks such gorgeous body jewelry at affordable prices!

1. Gorgeous gold
I love this simple gold captive bead ring. So pretty and so classic. 

2. Daisy garden septum clicker
Available in 16g so perfect for my conch

3. Vertical captive bead ring
I like the simplicity of this and that it has the vertical captive bead ring which means it will sit perfectly.

So which one is your favourite? Let me know in the comments!

Vintage Watches Shopping Tips

photo via morguefile
As you peer into the glass cabinet in front of you, you go deeper into a contemplative trance. To buy? Or not to buy? That is the question. With all the choices before you, a very convincing salesperson and a wad of cash to part with, it’s no wonder buying vintage watches can be a tricky task.

First things first, there are three main things you will need to consider when you first go searching for the perfect antique timepiece. These three things are:

1.      Have you done your research?
2.      Have you gotten up-close and personal to the item?
3.      Have you ensured the seller is trustworthy and reputable?

These may sound like obvious things to do before buying something so expensive. However, missing just one of these elements can throw things off track drastically and cause you unnecessary trouble. Finding a reputable seller should be at the top of your list. It’s clear by reviews and their lengthy presence in the market that Kalmar Antiques have a brilliant reputation for supplying quality antique pieces.

It can be a real enjoyable activity and with lots of knowledgeable communities and resources both online and offline, there’s heaps of learning you can do. This way you get in the know and can discover items of great value.

So let’s get nostalgic! Consider why you are doing it in the first place

The ‘why’ should always precede the how in any case. If you take great pride in vintage watches, you will no doubt invest more time and energy. If it is for business investment, both aspects are of equal importance. From Omega to Rolex to Heuer, there can be no certainty in vintage watch investments. So if vintage watches are a passion, you need to ensure you are grounded in reality when considering your choices.

Considering which brands are most reliable is crucial before bidding or buying a watch. Here are just a few:

Ø  The renowned Rolex
Ø  Patek Philippe
Ø  Omega

Doing more research on consistent top sellers is crucial to you tapping into a winning watch. If you’re actively on the hunt for vintage Rolex watches, Kalmar Antiques, as mentioned earlier, stocks a great selection.

Picking your vintage watch

You know a watch is vintage if it is 20 years or older. It can come from any owner or stock, but the most affordable are normally second hand. Generally, there are two types of antique watches.

The Estate watch or the Timepiece

These two categories include a wide variety of different types of watches. Important timepieces get their value from a famous lineage. It may be important because there have only been limited versions made or maybe it’s of unusually high calibre. Knowing the history is a crucial aspect which differentiates watches too.

Estate watches, on the other hand, are far more expensive than timepieces and are characterised by being part of the ‘estate’ of a deceased person.

Should you go down the pre-owned path?

With a growing number of places to actually buy pre-owned vintage watches, you have the luxury of choice.  The places where you can clock the best deals will be flea markets, antique jewellery stores and sites.

Buying vintage watches online

Here are the simple steps you must undertake when buying a vintage watch:

      Decide if you are going for a specific brand or style
      Determine if you want a specific model within that brand or style 
      Write down a list for a sound strategy. Split it into two columns: one for wants and one for needs. Consider the material and straps, whether it needs to be manual or you don’t have a preference.
     Once answering these questions see if they fit with what you want to achieve and your budget.

So before you make your first purchase, apply the points in this guide and get the vintage watch you’ve been searching for.


The Hottest Prom Dress Styles over Time

Image by Peaches Boutique

There are certain prom dress styles that have made serious impact over the years. Of course, there seems to be different trends each year, but it’s more about the right style fitting the right figure.

To make sure you turn up to your prom wearing the hottest dress, we’ve put together a list of which styles flatter different figures. Follow it, and you’re sure to be the Belle of the ball.

Petite Figures

Small frames look sensational in short, poufy shapes. This helps to add the illusion of an hourglass curve. For great ideas, view online store at

If you’d prefer to look taller, mermaid gowns have been the way to go. They create a curvy silhouette with their dramatic hemlines and fitted bodices.

Taller Figures

Show your amazing height off with ruche dresses that will keep you looking to lanky. Micro-minis have become hot favorites and in past years high leg slits and high-low dresses have been popular choices as well.

Curvy Figures

Your curves are what make you beautiful. Show them off with a form-fitting dress, one-shoulder strap or an empire waistline that will make your waist look smaller. To keep up-to-date with this year’s hot trends, connect with Peaches Boutique on Facebook.

Apple Figures with Fuller Bust Line

Apple figures are usually “top heavy,” with wider torsos and broader shoulders. Some of the hottest prom styles draw attention away from the waist and towards the bust. Therefore, choose dresses that flow from beneath the bust. A ruched or draped material that gathers and lies across the middle works well, too.

Pear-Shaped Figures

Goddess-inspired gowns have been popular choices for girls who are pear-shaped. Grecian-like gowns that have a high waist and intricate neckline will draw attention towards your upper body and away from the hips. Alternatively, voluminous layers that float over the hips with an exaggerated A-line that plays up your waist will look amazing.

Sheath Evening Gowns

Sheath evening gowns have also made it as hot trends. They’re designed to hug the body tightly and are usually unbelted with a straight drape. These dresses look amazing with or without straps.

A-Line Dresses

A-line evening gowns are timeless classics. These somewhat bell-shaped gowns will fit snugly at the top and gradually widen towards the bottom, without pleating or gathering. A-line styles are simple and elegant.

Trumpet Shaped Dresses

These dresses are typically tight fitting down until mid-thigh or knees where they then flare out. While mermaid gowns hug the body to the knees and then fan out, trumpet dresses are fitted through the hips, down to mid-thighs and then dramatically flare out.

Empire Dresses

Empire shaped gowns involve the waistline coming up to just under the bust and then the skirt hangs loose and straight. It’s a light, breezy style.

The Dropped Waist

With these dresses, the waistline is dropped just below the waist and the skirts are either flared or fitted.

Princess Gowns

Princess gowns are also classics. This style is tight and cut in single pieces, hanging in unbroken lines from the shoulder all the way to the flared hem.

Use this list to help you choose one of the hottest prom style dresses.


5 tips for buying and restoring old houses

Not many people realise that one of my dreams is to one day buy an old house and fully restore it to its former glory. There is something so beautiful about older homes, they have spirit and warmth. It’s the sort of feeling you don’t really get with newer homes.

Here are my tips!

1. Choose something that you can finish
Many people get into restoring homes only to find that the job they have taken on is too big and too costly. So make sure you work out exactly how much time and energy you want to expend into restoring the property. Don’t purchase something that is far more work than you want to do regardless of the cheap price!

2. Budget
Make a budget for the renovations and make sure you stick to it!  Again, this comes down to choosing the right property – for your time, your money and for future profit potential.

3. Choose something with natural beauty
Gorgeous elements such as high beam ceiling or exposed bricks are all the rage, so choose something that has these elements. This will add to the value of the property in the long run and also give you something beautiful to restore.

4. Think about your future plans for the property
Do you want to sell the property, live in it or rent it out? If you choose to rent it out it might be useful to invest in some property management software in order to ensure you get the best bang for your buck!

5. Stick to the theme
There’s no point renovating a beautiful old property to turn it into something lifeless and modern. Stick with the home’s natural feel. If it’s a country feel go with that. A bit industrial style? Roll with that. Restoring is all about bringing life back to the thing being restored so take the house back to its original beauty, nothing more.

Need some help remodeling your home? Check out my previous post on giving your home a new lease of life.