Oscar Bling

The 81st Annual Academy Awards were last night, and what a show it was. If you saw it, you noticed the jewelry on the Red Carpet. It was hard to miss. This year seemed to be all about making a statement with jewelry. So who made our jaws drop with their stunning or gawdy awful jewelry while strolling the the Red Carpet?

Let's start with someone who can do no wrong, Angeline Jolie. All I can saw is wow! First of all, she's classy and sophisticated in her black strapless Elie Saab gown, but she tops it off with emerald Lorraine Schwartz earrings and a matching cocktail ring. Your eyes went straight towards them, as they should have. Any emerald of this size, cut and design should steal the show.

Let's move on to Heidi Klum. Now, you would assume that she could do no wrong being the host of Fashion Runway. However, don't forget that a model of this caliber is also willing to take risks. Well, I'm afraid she lost this one. Her red Roland Mouret dress was a disaster and seemed to be pulling and stretching in all the wrong places. It just seemed like the fabric was wrapped, folded and pinned wherever it landed. On top of this, her excessive jewelry just added to the chaos. She should have put the earrings on and left without all those bracelets. In her defense, she was wearing and promoting a Diet Coke charm bracelet that she designed to benefit a charity.

OK, let's talk about something positive! Taraji Henson made her Red Carpet debut in a fantastic Roberto Cavalli strapless gown and some jaw dropping Fred Leighton jewels around her neck. Plus, did anyone notice her red clutch?What a fabulous nod to the event and to her overall statement. She either found an excellent stylist or she has impeccable taste.

On a controversial note, Amy Adams looked....good. I myself was torn. I though her dress was beautiful, and her necklace was amazing. But when I saw it all together, I just don't know. Perhaps she could have taken a tip from Angelina Jolie, make a statement with the dress -OR- the jewelry. I think if the dress were just red without the black lines, the necklace, or a version of the necklace might have worked. On a side note, I hated her choice of shoes - black, clunky, and it didn't tie in at all with her necklace choice. They remind me of Prom.

Whether fabulous or disastrous, those are my Red Carpet picks of the night as far as jewelry goes. Until next year.
You can view all your fashions favorites online at E! Fashion.

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Jewelry Clasps

Jewelry clasps are often looked over when shopping for jewelry. But, there are many different types of clasps, from fancy decorative clasps to a simple ribbon or stringing material that ties into a bow. Some are part of the design while others are simply the fixture that keeps the piece of jewelry on your body. So, let's talk a little more about different clasps, as well as what to watch out for.

The claw
The most common type of clasp is the claw, which is a little hook with a spring that opens and closes to secure your necklace or bracelet. These are great, secure clasps, but watch out for the tiny ones, these can be hard to open and close if they are too tiny. These are also difficult to use on bracelets, you seem to keep chasing the bracelet around and around your arm.

Hook clasp
A simple hook clasp, usually handmade, are a nice and easy to use, especially with bracelets. All you have to is hook the loop without holding a clasp open. Once you hook it, you are golden - no pun intended. Make sure the hooks aren't too wide at the opening, or your jewelry might fall off. You can easily tighten your hook clasp by pinching in together once it's hooked together.

Toggle Clasp
A toggle clasp is a ring on one end and a swivel or bar on the other side. The bar is inserted into the ring sideways, then it's secured when the bar turns so the width is larger than the ring. Does that make sense, it's a bit tough to describe. They are also easy to use, and can be decorative enough to be in the front or the back of a necklace. Some necklaces are even designed around the toggle clasp, if they are elaborate enough.

Magnetic clasps
These are great for lightweight jewelry and non strung jewelry. Why? Well, while they are very convenient and easy to use, they don't latch properly, or at all. So if you are wearing a beaded bracelet and it gets caught on your seat belt, or your sweater, or something else, then disaster can strike. Best case scenario, your bracelet falls off and you see it and put it back on. Worst case scenario, the bracelet falls to the ground and beads go everywhere! I'm not trying to say that magnetic clasps are a mistake, I'm simply saying you should carefully decide which jewelry you wear with a magnetic clasp.

I haven't even begun to cover the different types and designs for clasps...this article would be too long and I don't want to bore you. Let's face it, this isn't the most exciting topic in this blog. But, it is something to think about when buying jewelry or making jewelry. Make sure your clasp is secure and easy to use. Just because it's beautiful, doesn't mean it's practical. Try on your jewelry yourself. Many jewelry shops will put it on for you, but you wont get a sense of how easy it is to put on and take off yourself. But don't over analyze, if you love that unique handcrafted bracelet with your favorite gemstones or pearls, you can always have your husband or friends help you put it on. It's not the end of the world, we do have to make some sacrifices for beautiful jewelry.

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Pre-Holiday Savings

Happy Holidays from Kincaidesigns
It's that time of year again – time for family gatherings, turkey dinners, jingle bells and holiday shopping. This year, avoid the crowds and shop online at kincaidesigns.com.
You'll find unique handcrafted jewelry, glass holiday ornaments and other gifts such as wine charms and keychains. Plus, prices start as low as $20 for holiday star ornaments, and as low as $18 for handmade jewelry.

Start your holiday jewelry shopping now!

Start saving before the holiday rush!
Why wait until the holiday rush to save on your holiday shopping? You can save 20% on your entire purchase of handmade jewelry at Kincaidesigns when you spend $100 or more. See coupon for details.

handmade jewelry, holiday savings, cheap jewelry, cheap christmas gifts, cheap holiday gifts, affordable handmade jewelryGift wrapping
When you shop at Kincaidesigns.com, your handmade jewelry will automatically arrive at your doorstep in a gift box, wrapped with a bow. All you have to do is place your jewelry gift under the tree or stuff a stocking on Christmas Eve. No need to hide away and wrap these gifts while no-one is watching.

Start your holiday jewelry shopping today!

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Matchy Matchy

What kind of fashionista are you? Do you like to wear matching jewelry sets? Do you match your shoes to your handbag, or wear lipstick to match your shirt. Well, today's styles have become so eclectic in nature, that it seems you can do no wrong. Now, take that comment with a grain of salt because there are still fashion do's and fashion don'ts.

Lately, women are making statements with their oversized handbags, large earrings and bright shoes. Clothing seems to be centered around fabulous accessories.

Obviously, jewelry is one of those fabulous accessories. I admit it, I used to wear matching necklaces, bracelets and even earrings, but lately I've enjoyed wearing a more eclectic collection of jewelry and accessories, combining large gold earrings with my handcrafted bridge jewelry necklace, and topping it off with some bangles. Yes, technically they "match," but they aren't sold in a set.

So, it's the first day of summer. I challenge you to wear two pieces of jewelry that weren't bought in a set. Wear those silver hoops with your wooden cuff bracelet, or your gold bangles with some pearl earrings. It's liberating for the more conservative of fashionistas, and it will open up the possibilities that you never knew you had in your jewelry box.

Check out polyvore.com for tips on building your wardrobe. Mix and match outifts, jewelry and handbags from online retailers, then follow the links back to their websites to make your virtual wardrobe a reality.

Shop for timeless handmade jewelry at kincaidesigns.com. Mix and match or pair our jewelry with your favorite gold hoop earrings.

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Buying Jewelry Insurance

If you have homeowners or renters insurance, your jewelry is already covered up to a certain amount. Make sure you let your insurance company know the value of your jewelry so they can advise you about buying additional jewelry insurance. You can insure you jewelry against instances such as loss, damage and theft. Many people don't think they can claim broken or destroyed jewelry from activities such as sports, power tools, chemicals and solvents, swimming pools and hot tubs, or any activity where jewelry can be damaged. But just like anything else you insure, your jewelry can be covered from these instances as well.

Buying jewelry insurance

Jewelry insurance is available in addition to your homeowners or renters insurance. It may or may not be tied to your homeowners or renters policy, but it serves as additional coverage, so you're safe either way. Before you buy jewelry insurance, do your research. Compare policies and how claims are reported. Just because a plan is inexpensive, doesn't mean it's a good policy. Some insurance companies make it almost impossible to file a claim, requesting impossible details and unnecessary proof. In order to insure your jewelry, you should have a receipt if possible, a photo of your jewelry, and a thorough appraisal.

You should have your jewelry appraised prior to buying coverage. This will provide a written document of the value of your jewelry, so your premium will be properly determined. Plus, with a detailed description, photographs and accurate value of your jewelry, there will no discrepancies when filing a claim. Your appraisal should include the following:

• Complete and accurate description of your jewelry including the style, characteristics, weights, grades and measurements.
• Statement about any unusual treatments or flaws that might come with your gemstones.
• Statement as to whether your stone is imitation, natural, synthetic, etc.
• Name, manufacturer, workmanship, metal, mounting and karats.
• The value of your jewelry
• Photograph of the item being appraised.

Always make sure your appraisal is prepared by a certified Insurance appraiser. Ask to see certification.

How to prevent theft, loss or damage.

Keep your jewelry in a safe place like a jewelry box in your closet, a safe, or a hidden locked box. Your dresser drawer or jewelry box will be the first place a thief will look. It would be a extra safety measure to keep your bedroom closet locked as well.

Make sure your windows and doors have quality locks, and consider a security system. Most thefts occur during the day when people are away at work because burglars think they can gain access to your home without being caught. You need to prepare your home so they wont even try to gain access.

When you are on vacation, have a neighbor collect your mail and newspapers, and consider leaving the porch light and an inside light on in the house. This creates the illusion that someone is home. If you'll be away for a long period of time, have someone mow your lawn, make sure your jewelry is in a secure location and consider having the post office hold your mail until you return. You want to draw as little attention to your empty home as possible.

When you aren't wearing your jewelry, make sure it's being put back where it belongs. Don't leave your jewelry on tables or counters where they can be knocked onto the floor or down a drain. Some jewelry may go unnoticed and be sucked up the vacuum cleaner, or simply disappear.

If your jewelry is bothering you during the day, don't throw it in an obscure pocket in your purse. Consider keeping a jewelry pouch in your purse so you can keep your jewelry in a secure place until you get home. Remember to put your jewelry away when you get home.

If you are traveling, don't pack your jewelry in luggage that will be handled by someone else. Pack your jewelry in your carry-on luggage so you will be able to keep an eye on it. Keep your jewelry in a hotel room safe or a hotel safe. Don't leave it on the bathroom counter or out in the open where it can be vacuumed up, swept away, or worse, stolen.

Don't wear your jewelry during strenuous activities. Gemstones can break if hit just right, precious metal can scratch easily, and you can even loose your jewelry in water activities such as water skiing. So be careful, and leave your jewelry at home on these active days. Some of these activities include yard work, manual labor, sports, housework, construction, working on the car or handling harsh chemicals, etc.

If your jewelry is damaged, gather the pieces and take a photograph of the jewelry remains if it's possible. Write down what happened to cause your jewelry to be damaged, and report claims as soon as possible. Remember to get authorization before having your jewelry repaired, as not all claims will be approved.

Don't forget to have your jewelry inspected often. Settings can become loose with wear, and it's easier to lose stones. Whenever you stop into a jeweler, have them check the setting and have the piece of jewelry cleaned. It's easier to remember to do this for jewelry you wear all the time, like a wedding ring. You have the piece on you most of the time, and you can just stop into a jeweler when you see one. But those pieces you wear less frequently, or for special occasions, it harder to remember to bring these in. So the next time you go out shopping, bring your jewelry in and drop it off before you shop around. Just don't forget to pick up your sparkling jewelry before you head home.

Jewelry Insurance References

JCRS - http://www.jcrs.com/
JIBNA - http://www.insure-jewelry.com

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