Put a ring on it!

Sylvie  LevineThe wedding season is here. Eager brides are flocking to wedding shows and happy couples are choosing rings to celebrate and represent their union.

DolceDolce’s Amber Burns chatted with designer Sylvie Levine to learn the basics of choosing bridal jewellery. Here is Amber with what she learned:
 
Shanks, halos, and birdcages may sound like an absurd combination, but with the guidance of jewelry designer Sylvie Levine, anyone can find the perfect ring.
 
Levine’s winter bridal-jeweler line includes 14 collections of meticulously designed rings categorized by style and commonalities. Each collection is named after a French love term in honour of Levine’s Belgian roots.
 
Purchasing a diamond, whether it is for yourself or a loved one, should be an extremely personal and sentimental experience. Levine prides herself on creating custom jewelry to fit her clients’ needs, while remaining budget conscious. "I’ll modify every ring to fit any size or shape diamond. I’ll use any metal," she said.
 
With so many options and the ability to customize your ring, where should one start? Levine explains you should first pick out your center diamond, and focus on two elements: shape and size. Shapes range from round, emerald, marquise, cushion, or — one of my favourites – pear-shaped, just to name a few.
 
Choosing the size of your diamond will likely depend on your budget. Do not get discouraged if your funds are limited. Levine’s tips and techniques can make even the smallest of diamonds look brilliant.
 
The next to think to consider in picking out your ring is the shape of your hand. Many of us amateurs do not consider this step, but it makes all the difference! Short, thicker fingers should go with thicker shanks (bands) and even a higher profile. If you have petite, thinner fingers, a thick shank would overpower the delicacy of your hands, so go with a smaller, classic band, creating focus on your centerpiece.
 
An engagement ring may become your most cherished piece of jewellery, an heirloom to pass down for generations. Whether you like classic, dainty looks, or fabulously, loud statements, choose a ring that is a reflection of you.
Reece Witherspoon's ringSylvie’s rings start at $900 for wedding bands.
 
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A touch of rock and roll

Boho style blouse from new Andy Hilfiger's Andrew Charle's collection at Macy's $79DolceDolce’s Amber Burns reviews Andy Hilfiger’s new collection – a homage to 70’s rock and roll at Macy’s.

Here is Amber’s report: 

Andy Hilfiger began his career working for his brother, the leading American fashion designer, Tommy Hilfiger. He helped to put Tommy Jeans on the fashion map. Following that success, Andy’s company Sweet Face Fashion launched JLO, Jennifer Lopez’s fashion and beauty brand.
 
After years of being behind the scenes of some of the music industry’s most successful clothing and beauty launches, Andy Hilfiger has combined his passion for music and fashion. His new clothing line, Andrew Charles, a rock ‘n’ roll-inspired collection for men and women, is now available at Macy’s stores.
 
Growing up watching bands like the Rolling Stones, Hilfiger developed an early appreciation for the fashion trends he saw onstage. Hilfiger defined his aesthetic: “I wanted to create real stage clothing for everyday wear."

The women’s pieces in his collection are inspired by the 1970s rock scene. This romantic Long Sleeve Lace Ruffle Blouse, $79, creates a soft silhouette while incorporating a level of edginess with its black lace and embellishments.
 
 
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Centerpiece savvy

This colourful centerpiece is perfect for a casual fall celebration!DolceDolce’s Amber Burns shares entertaining tips from the experts at Country Living magazine, just in time for the holidays. Here’s Amber’s report: 

With the right tools and a few insider tips, anyone can create a stunning centerpiece for a holiday soiree, to brighten a home – or both! Enjoy the elegance floral centerpieces exude. 
 
Recently, Country Living held its second annual fair at Stone MountainPark outside Atlanta. Home and food stylist Annette Joseph shared her floral expertise with me.
 
First, gather your “flower tool kit,” which should include: Clippers, scissors, wire, tape, ribbon, and Annette’s secret weapon, rubber bands. Rubber bands are essential in creating a massed-out, flush look. Annette suggested playing with the juxtaposition of the flowers and the vessel. For instance, peach roses look chic in a rugged, funky bucket on crisp, white linen. Go for the unexpected.

To create a uniform, professional look, separate bundles of flowers individually and remove the leaves. Annette encourages you to regroup your flowers into multiple small bouquets, but to “always cut the flowers shorter than you think.”  The shorter stems create a fuller-looking bouquet, and keep the flowers from drooping over the edges of the vessel. 

DolceDolce's Amber Burns and Ed. Sarah Gray Miller from Country Living Country Living editor Sarah Gray Miller likes "hydrangeas and peonies… they’re classic." 

Creating a floral centerpiece is a fabulous way to personalize any event.  Your party should always reflect your style.
 
Here are more tips from the experts at Country Living to jazz up your gatherings:

·        Themes are always fun; be consistent throughout different realms of planning;
·        Themes are always fun, but keep your chosen theme consistent throughout the planning process;
·        Incorporate your theme from invitations to favors;
·        Welcome your guests with a great appetizer;
·        Play up your theme or holiday party with a seasonal beverage, such as cider or egg nog;
·        Favors should be high in sentiment, but not in price. Use mason jars, cocoa, and marshmallows to create an inexpensive party favor.  Add some ribbon and a name tag to double your gift as a seating arrangement.
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Flower power

Vanessa Hudgens "Chain drop three father earring" by Love Child at shopplanetblue.com DolceDolce’s Amber Burns’s unleashed her inner flower child with this summer’s bohemian  fashion trend. Amber shares tips how to create one of the hottest and prettiest hair trends for summer. Here’s Amber’s take on how to go boho:

If you ever wanted to channel your inner flower child, this season is the perfect time to do so.  Feathers, leather, flowers, and beads may sound like a long-lost lyric from the 1960’s, but these items are all you need to create bohemian-inspired accessories this summer. Jewelry has always been a great way to complete any look, and these pieces will help you do just that.

 
 
"Peacock feather earring" by Born Gypsy at shopplanetblue.comHow to create your own boho hair accessory
What you choose to wear should be an extension as well as an expression of yourself. Whether it is earrings or hair pieces, accessories are sure to take you far this season. Feeling crafty? Head to the craft store or use old mismatched earrings and discarded necklaces to create your own accessories with a few simple tips.
 
Gather your materials.  Collect feathers, beads, leather cords, and anything else that inspires you.  Super glue is an important item.  Needle-nosed pliers will also prove helpful with small, pesky clasps.
 
The possibilities are endless. Check out fashion magazines for inspiration. Also, a trip to your local craft store may help jump-start your creative process.
 
Start by tying one end of a leather cord to an earring, then attach beads and feathers using super glue, to the end of the cord.  Repeat this step by adding more cords for added dimension.
 
To make a clip on hair extension boho
Express yourself --my friend did!Braid in ribbons and beads to an inexpensive clip-in hair extension from Ulta or any beauty supply store. You may even find a cute one at a dollar store, as the look does not need to be realistic. Use leather cords for the craft store to incorporate feathers in your hair pieces.  Simply braid the cords into small sections of the hair.  Secure the top ends of the cord to the clip with super glue.
 
Continue adding elements to your pieces until you are satisfied.  Keep in mind color, texture, and weight.  Have fun with this, and enjoy your one of-a-kind accessories! 
 
Here is one my crafty friend made herself.  
  
 
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