Janeos Jewellery

From around the world, Janeo Jewels presents today's hottest celebrities and budding fashion mavens wearing costume jewellery from 925 sterling silver, necklaces, bracelets and earrings with Swarovski crystals. They are setting the standard for fun and affordable fashion jewellery including leather wrist bands, men's stainless steel jewellery and women's charm bracelets. Janeo takes you center-stage to the juiciest news and hottest trends to hit the costume jewellery industry in years.

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Gap's Illustrious Trio Reveals Holiday Picks

It might seem a bit early to be browsing through selections for the upcoming holiday season, what with the weather being scorching in many places, but as with a large number of industries, fashion is always looking forward, and being well-prepared for new seasons is a sure way to win customers and create interest. In this spirit, mega-retailer Gap, Inc. has given the masses in New York a glimpse of its holiday offerings through its flagship store as well as Old Navy and Banana Republic. The new looks for the holidays incorporate a lot of elements that ring true for classic fall and winter looks, but there's also a generous amount of fresh and fun ideas worked into the fabric.

new holiday 2009 items from Gap

One of the most striking aspects about the newly-released pieces is the sheer love affair with color being displayed in nearly every item from thick woolen socks to comfortable overcoats and hoodies. Not content to remain subdued through the grayer months of the year, the holiday collections proudly proclaim elements of energy, health, and a free spirit with bright hues spanning the rainbow. Denim showed up as a major player among the offerings, but no material can beat flannel for classic holiday comfort and style. With so many varying facets, it might be difficult to envision what sort of costume jewellery we'll be seeing in the coming seasons, but there's still plenty of time to speculate.

big crystal flower brooch pin
Big crystals are likely to make grand appearances over the holidays, especially given their unique ability to show off background colors and create a bit of sparkle against matte fabrics. Whether dangling from the lobes as chandelier earrings, wrapped around a wrist in a stunning and dramatic 14k gold bangle bracelet, or pinned to a favorite sweater in a complex and charming brooch, the over-sized crystal has great potential for bringing out the brightness of the cold-weather clothing lines.

topaz blue swarovski crystal drop earrings
This opening for giant sparklers doesn't mean that the small ones will have to stay in the jewellery box all season, either. There's plenty of room for glimmering details with the host of seasonal parties and inevitable formal wear that crop up during the fall and winter. A perennial favorite, our unbranded Swarovski crystal drop ball earrings are a beautiful way to bring rich jewel-toned color to a solid or subdued fashion palette and cash in on the proud hues that are sure to prowl the runways.

funky pom pom costume jewellery necklace
The holiday season is also quite receptive to purely fun jewellery gifts; take the pom pom, for instance. We've woven luxurious pom poms with attractive beads and crystals to create funky long necklaces that are great for wearing over a sweater, and can even add an extra bit of warmth to a winter outfit.
The holiday season may have a handful of months left to go, but we have the feeling that as the heat dies down and that first fall chill finds its way into the windows of jewellery lovers everywhere, bold and brightly colored earrings, necklaces, bracelets, brooches, and rings will be popping up on many a winter wish list.

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Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Polly Want a (Really Fashionable) Cracker?

One of our favorite trends in costume jewelleryjewelry and fashion accessories that has been popping up everywhere from couture magazines to the streets of the world's most style-conscious cities is the bag charm. Purses, totes, carry-alls, clutches...there's a world of design and detail for handbags out there, but we're rarely if ever able to customize our bags with something that makes a statement about our individual personality or taste. That is, until the bag charm came along. Thousands upon thousands of styles are on the market, from the simple and chic to the absolutely outrageous, in materials that span the metals, minerals, and specialty textiles. Here at Janeo we've built up an impressive collection of bag charms, and one of our favorite categories is comprised of pieces that take on all the appeal of the bag charm while adding an incredible versatility. Our combination bag charms, key rings, and chain necklaces let you decide if you'd like to string your charm around your handbag, as a colorful anchor for your keys, or as an exciting jewelry piece for the neck. And it's hard to beat our special, limited edition parrot bag charm when it comes to pairing versatility with fun.

parrot crystal key ring

Starting with a base of cotton-candy pink enamel, the parrot exudes the beauty and colorful burst of the tropics, suggesting the hot rhythms of jungle dances and tall cocktails with bits of exotic fruits and tiny umbrellas skirting the rim. The parrot's body is encrusted with tiny round clear Swarovski crystals, creating a complex and eye-catching sparkle that adds an overall feeling of whimsy to the piece. The parrot's pretty wing is a cascade of vivid colors in enamel, from deep ruby red to ocean blue, emerald green to an appealing lemon-lime at the very tip. The stylized wing is sure to send your fashion sense aflutter and bring out your inner songbird. The perfect finishing touches are all present, with a cute, pointed golden beak, an inquisitive eye, and a darling little leg perched on a silver stick.
Measuring five and a half by two centimeters, the costume jewellery parrot is just the right size for wearing around the neck as a neck chain or dangling from a bag or keyring. Far from being your average pirate's feathered henchman, this sweet parrot is all about brilliance and the sheer enjoyment of showing your true colors. The piece makes a superb conversation starter and is a favorite jewellery accessory for outdoor excursions from travel to beach trips to casual shopping jaunts on the boardwalk. If you've been looking for something different yet delightful to add to your costume jewelry collection, this is just the item for you.

another view of our crystal parrot bag charm

For use as a bag charm, the parrot comes with a standard keyring with a lobster clasp. A thirty-five centimeter silver-toned chain is included for wearing as a necklace. This extraordinary Swarovski crystal costume jewelry piece is a limited stock item; take advantage of its great style and accessible price before it's extinct!

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Saturday, 25 July 2009

Mercedes-Benz Fashion Show: Swimsuits Ready for Sand and Sun

While there are many anticipated seasonal shows featuring an array of specialty garments, the Mercedes-Benz swim show held each year in Miami is one of the most revered and well-loved events of the summer. It might be the special peek at what will be on offer for the pool and the coast over the course of the next year that draws the crowds to this popular show, but we have a feeling that the unique composition of swim suits create a sort of accessory appeal, making the pairing of tops and bottoms, suits and sarongs, sandals and sombreros, a kind of ultimate accessory arranging. This year, the suits on parade ranged from delicate, teeny-tiny bikinis in many styles to bold one-piece maliots and inventive shapes that strategically placed just a bit of pretty fabric in all the right places to create very modern looks for the water.
The takes on beauty were classic and alluring; one show in particular featured coiffure reminiscent of the 1920s and 30s, back when bathing suits were mostly concerned about covering as much skin as possible. Lips went bold with dark colors and eyes stayed bright and clear with basic mascara and a minimum of fuss (who needs eyeliner stains from a dip in the pool, anyway?). And of course, there was jewellery on display as well. Big, chunky bangles in fun materials and patterns were a popular choice for structural swim suits, while more delicate pieces, especially 14k gold charms, jewelry necklaces, and dainty crystal brooches and other accoutrements, were paired with feminine, strappy suits. So what's a girl to wear to the beach if she wants to bring a little shine? Here's our style guide for different summer suit looks.

ethnic bead necklace
exotic swimsuit cut
This interesting suit shape is brough out beautifully by the interesting lines and patterns of the white and tawny print. Playing up this rudimentary yet exotic look, ethnic beads make for a fashion-forward statement. This suit would work wonders with our ethnic bead necklaces, which come in a range of textures, materials, and colors. A straw hat and a bit of sunscreen are all that's needed to make this look turn quite a few heads, whether in the tropics or lounging around the local pool.

crystal phone charm mobile jewellery
classic floral bikini
A classic bikini calls for classic accessories, and this model sports an excellent set of costume jewellery accessories to complement her suit. The silver bracelets and silver earrings, contrasting with thin and thick structures, add interest to the suit without being overbearing. But there's a bit of whimsy in the floral print that's not picked up by the chosen jewelry designs shown here, and we think the addition of a flower shaped crystal cell phone charm would be a great echo for the suit's print.

leather wristband costume jewellery
updated country swimsuit
This denim and gingham number recalls the sweet patterns and fabrics of the heartland, and calls for accessories in leather and suede. Our quality suede wrist cuff would add just the right amount of golden highlights to this rustic look.

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Happy Prize Picking to Our Weekly Winners

Each week, we round up the winners we've selected over the past seven days and present them here so they can soak up a bit of the costume jewellery spotlight. Winners can choose from a great variety of items in our prize section, accessible from our main page. All it takes to win is a quick entry (or a previous purchase) and a little bit of luck!

Here are this week's winners:

Sally Bell
Laura Cockburn
Mari Pickering
Scott Brown
Lauren Somerville
Femi Sunday
Laura Rcahael Murray

If you've won, simply send us an email with the item you'd like to receive along with your name and post address. Good luck to our entrants in the coming days!

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Thursday, 23 July 2009

Celebrity Fashion Face-Off – Different Accessories, Same Designer Duds

It's an especially feared feared fashion faux pas: after tireless searching, tailoring, and pampering in preparation for a big night out on the town, two celebrities end up wearing the same piece of clothing. There are a few different reasons why this particular slip-up is so unfortunate. The ample opportunity to compare who looks better in a plunging or thigh-revealing gown is a definite downside, with older or less toned celebs taking a visual hit that otherwise wouldn't have had much cause to be published. There's also the issue of the time-honoured celebrity-designer courtship. If a certain design house offers a piece to a celebrity for a red carpet waltz or important event, the appearance of the same garment on someone else can detract from the selling and statement power created through the sponsored celeb's fashion “advertisement.” Perhaps most importantly, however, showing up to a party looking like someone else simply isn't fun. Still, this couture tragedy is bound to happen on occasion, so what's the remedy? Costume jewellery, of course! Accessorizing with unique jewelry from bracelets to bangles and brooches to gemstone jewelry necklaces, and even throwing in the occasional bag charm, mobile jewellery, or crystal belt buckle is a great way to put personality into a piece of clothing.

Madonna and Whitney Houston in the same dress

Recently, the identical dress discovery was made between two major music divas: Madonna and Whitney Houston. You can hardly blame the pair for their draw to the dress, a black and silver Dolce & Gabbana leopard print number with refined, squared-off straps and a generous neckline featuring flattering sweeps of fabric. Madonna and Whitney wore the dress on the very same night, but were thankfully attending different events. Whitney donned the frock to an album debut in London, while Madonna slipped it on for a dinner with the designers themselves in Milan. Both singers look fantastic in the dress, making an expose of who has a wider waist or whiter teeth an exercise in futility. But neither diva seems to have gotten the maximum value out of the gown through their choice of accessories.
Madonna chose a classic cross jewelery necklace with a silver pendant, slightly tucked beneath the gown's neckline. In contrast, Whitney wore a simple black choker, which may have been a bolder statement, but still lacked that something special delivered through the rhinestone sparkle and 14k gold sheen of quality costume jewellery. So what could these celebrities have worn to make their dresses look a little different? For Madonna, we'd recommend our unusual cord, tassle, and crystal jewelry necklace, in gunmetal gray tones that work well with the silver sheen of the dress. Our crystal charms would also be a great choice for a bag or phone, and this black, white, and clear cosmetic compact mirror bag jewellery would do the trick nicely.

tassle necklace
enamel heart shaped bag charm

For Whitney, we think our rhodium crystal belt buckle would make a nice accent, especially when paired with the sparkle power of one of our charm rings that doubles as a jewelry necklace chain, such as this black and clear rhinestone-studded heart charm.

rhinestone belt buckle jewellery
crystal heart key ring pendant neck chain

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Tuesday, 21 July 2009

The Great Phone Charm Celebrity Match-Off!

Phone charms are gaining momentum as one of the hottest jewellery accessories on the market, with nearly limitless options for mobile phone straps and crystal charms that can range from elegant to funky. We've found plenty of dirt on celebrities and their cellphones, but how about celebrity phone charms? Until the stars reveal their favorite picks, we have a few humble suggestions.

Britney Spears
cell phone charm for Britney Spears
Britney could use a little love lately, and as the saying goes, you've got to give some to get some. Perhaps she'd do well with our crystal heart charm, a pretty gold piece with sparkling crystal details along the outside and a very clear message of “love” written across the center. A little traditional, a little original, with a lot of star power –right up Britney's alley.

Amy Winehouse
hello kitty mobile charm for Amy Winehouse
Amy Winehouse would probably appreciate the cute appeal and touch of something a little unusual in our hello kitty bag charm and phone accessory. The piece features a silver charm studded with brilliant clear crystals, in the shape of the classic hello kitty character. Topping it all off is a pretty pale green bow, the perfect hair accessory for an elaborate up-do like Amy's. Dangling from her cell, this mobile phone strap with special hello kitty star power would be sure to add a little bit of softness to the singer's often ragged edges.

Jennifer Love Hewitt
heart shaped charm for Jennifer Love Hewitt
What better phone charm for Jennifer Love Hewitt than this classic crystal heart charm all dolled up and ready for a ride on a celebrity cellphone? A beautiful, gleaming gold hear charm is set with stunning clear crystals, surrounding a captivating and dramatic centerpiece of pure Siam red crystal. Evoking the passion of love while remaining subtle and innocent, this is just the charm for the cheery, doe-eyed actress' phone.

Jessica Alba
purple cell phone charm for Jessica Alba
Jessica Alba's smoldering appeal along with her fresh take on fashion is a sure match for our purple button, crystal, and heart cell phone charm. Mobile jewellery with a distinct sense of high-fashion accessory, this charm creates a cascade of purple shades and stand-out shapes, with deep purple enamel buttons, several light amethyst beads, and a substantial silver and amethyst crystal heart charm. Cute, classy, and creative all at once, this cell phone charm even matches the star's favorite purple shoes shoes.

Paris Hilton
crystal phone charm for Paris Hilton
Paris Hilton isn't afraid to bring out the bling, as is plainly visible with her crystal-studded phone. But why stop there? Our preppy, perky, and eternally pretty handbag crystal phone charm would look great dangling from the heiress' mobile. With real gold charm details making a strong statement of quality and taste brought to life by shimmering crystals and a cute enamel butterfly, this cell phone charm hits all the classic notes.

Which cell phone charms would you pick out for your favorite celebrities? Let us know, and don't forget to include yourself on the A-list, of course.

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Saturday, 18 July 2009

An Often Overlooked Accessory: Nail Bling

It seems that as fashion marches its way triumphantly into the twenty-first century, there's not much that hasn't been accessorised. We have decorative belts and belt buckles, charms for everything from our purses to our cell phones, special boot anklets, temporary tattoos, and all manner of hair accessories. And these, of course, just cover the outlying areas, after we've already covered the staple accessories themselves, such as costume jewelry, hats, bags, and scarves. Yet while this list might seem fairly exhaustive, it does leave some items behind in the wide world of accessories. One such item that's been getting a lot of attention lately is the ever-versatile nail. No, we're not about to suggest that you hammer some metal into your stilettos to give them an edgier look. We're talking about that prettiest of natural accessory features, the finger nail. They've been painted and polished in myriad ways throughout the years, but modern fashion is lending its particular nuances to this under-appreciated accessories realm.
One of the basics of any good nail accessory scheme is keeping things neat and clean. While it can be tempting to start out with what you've got and begin the paint-a-thon, there are a lot of aesthetic issues to deal with for most nails that aren't used to receiving the special treatment. Most nail nuts recommend getting regular manicures, but you can easily take a few steps to prep at home. Trim your nails often and evenly; go ahead and get a nice clipper that lets you attack at all the right angles. While super-long nails have been in style in past decades, there's not much good coming out of the statement now, unless perhaps you're looking for an 80's vintage feel. Enjoy a nice soak and get to work on those cuticles, making a nice and even canvas for the accessorising art to come.
Once you've prepped your nails for their powerful new look, you can head out to a professional or have a friend get creative with your tips. Or if you're feeling adventurous, you can experiment on yourself until you find something that's just right. So what are the celebs sporting on their nails these days? A great variety of fashions are being flaunted on the world's most watched fingers. Some people, like singer and actress Beyonce, are all about getting their accessory out there with a big statement; the star was recently spotted with monochrome nails that featured husband Jay-z's name and a tiny photograph of him in a baseball cap on the thumbnail.
Other fashionistas are amping up the accessory voltage with Swarovski crystal embellishments and other accents that really get the camera's attention. Still others, like pop starlet Rihanna, let the color and execution of the paint job speak out loud, with bright, eclectic polishes that are both fun and funky. Whatever your personal accessories style, you're sure to find a great way to get your nails in on the action.
Rihanna sports bright nails

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Weekly Winners

It's time to congratulate the winners we've picked over the past week. With tons of costume jewellery favorites to choose, from Swarovski crystals to 14k gold and rhodium plated delights, cocktail rings, long funky necklaces, bead bracelets, and more, our prize winners can choose a free item from our special category and enjoy prompt delivery in Janeo's much-loved, custom packaging.
All it takes is a few moments to enter, or enter automatically with a purchse. Huzzah for this week's winners!

Alan Ribchester
Matt Belcher
Susan Mackenzie
Denise Harmer
Melanie Louise Hunt
Maureen Nichol
Yem Brown

If you've won, shoot us an email with your pick, and feel free to sound off here on the blog with any thoughts. Good luck this week!

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Thursday, 16 July 2009

Berlin Fashion Week Presents an Up and Coming Show

Of all the often flaunted and much-lauded fashion capitals of the world, chief among them Paris and New York, Berlin's fashion week usually doesn't get to make many headlines. On one hand, it's understandable; the show itself has only just enjoyed its fifth year of production. But the vibrant German city, with its bevy of eager young designers, hasn't been gaining too many accolades from critics in the past few shows. This year, plenty of critics were equally under-enthused, but some commentators spotted glimmers of creativity and hope among the collections. In particular, the works of young fashion talents from the “Designers for Tomorrow” segment proved impressive for many critics. The category featured fashion design students and up and coming stylers and other professionals, who showed several collections that were both off the wall and wonderful, all while remaining wearable –an element that many designers, especially newer ones, often overlook.
Accessories created a strong presence at this year's Berlin fashion week, which has the unhappy distinction of being wedged between several major events in the fashion world, sometimes threatening to steal its proverbial thunder. But the bags, shoes, and other assorted goodies accompanying models down the catwalks were full of inspiration and spirit, proudly proclaiming the hues of summer and autumn with materials that weren't afraid to let loose and shine
From funky bangle bracelets in a rainbow of colors to specialty necklaces layered with charms and structural elements, costume jewellery looks at Berlin's big show were full of proud and punky statements without becoming too whimsical. Clean lines seemed to take a major hint from the clothing collections themselves, offering clearly defined corners and exact, rich, full colors. Achievable through intensely shaded enamel and other oft-incorporated materials, clean lines are some of the very best friends of costume jewelry, as a good linear structure helps serve as the basis for a piece that otherwise has free reign to morph in any number of complex ways. From simple yet stunning Swarovski crystal drop earrings in a wide variety of colors to sleek silver bracelets and simple necklaces, costume jewelry is hardly a stranger to the sleek fashions seen on the runway in Berlin this week.
While the parties are all over and the champagne has gone flat, the charming German city is sure to experience an increase in interest over its annual fashion event. With the wise addition of young and developing designers to the regular section of the show, the event was elevated from being simply another international fashion week splinter to a truly interesting event worthy of the attention of its more prominent sister shoes, throughout Europe and the rest of the world. If you missed Berlin Fashin Week this year, not to worry; you can start experiencing its one of kind allure with costume jewelry options that will bring out your own inner beauty and display it in a whole new way.

A party thrown by Escada during Berlin Fashion Week

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Tuesday, 14 July 2009

A Fan of Color for Your Favorite Wrist

There's a certain classic appeal in the monochrome; from works of art to fashion design, jewellery pieces to photographs, the presentation of a piece in limited, color-bound hues creates a visual appeal that's perfect for a variety of settings and applications. We're certainly fans of the monochrome at Janeo, and you can find multitude of quality costume jewellery pieces that reflect this fact. But we can't hide our enthusiasm for bursts of color. In tones and shades that span the visible spectrum, colors bring artistic pieces to life and afford a sense of celebration and joviality to everything they touch. Colors are some of the most important and well-beloved elements of costume jewellery, and pieces that share the spotlight on design, structure, and substance with a full palette of colors constitute some of the most effortlessly wearable and fun jewelry items available. This multi-hued spirit is captured in its full glory by our inventive and unusual studded bangle bracelet, a bangle with all the right touches to bring a bright smile to anyone's jewelry wardrobe.

multicolored bangle bracelet

An extraordinary example of the high-fashion looks rendered in affordable jewelry materials, our bangle bracelet begins its jubilant tale of color and creativity with a perfectly suitable and fashionable bangle base. A beautifully contoured ring of metal comprises the principle structure for the bracelet, and is accentuated in a rich, deep pewter finish, polished to an attractive luster. The cloudy gray of the pewter makes the perfect setting for the stunning array of color to come. Laid along the front of the contemporary jewelry piece, a row of moody graphite Swarovski crystals creates a complex sparkle while adding geometric interest with round stones offset by the spines to either side.
It is precisely the spine-like structure of the bracelet's fan that comprises the immediate structural appeal of this remarkable rhinestone bangle. Jutting forth from either side of the row of graphite crystals, small, curved spokes extend a few millimeters, creating a vertical matrix of metal that immediately grabs the attention and draws the eye. These spokes culminate in round crystal stones, and it's in these stones that the power of color comes through in the piece. Playful yet bold, the crystals display hues of red, pink, green, yellow, and violet, with smoky overtones that echo the graphite crystals and pewter finish below yet send the visual sense soaring with vibrancy and light. These colors render the bracelet a great match for just about any outfit or occasion, as the range is sure to complement everything from little black dresses to pantsuits to casual wear.

detail of multicolored bangle

If you're looking for some fun in your jewellery collection or the collection of someone for whom you care, this unusual bangle bracelet is the perfect way to deliver fun fashion jewelry with ample doses of elegance and modern appeal. A limited edition, the bangle is a rare costume jewellery item that's bound to sell out.

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Saturday, 11 July 2009

Men's Fashion: Skinny Jeans Stir Up a Ruckus

It seems not too long ago that large swaths of the fashion community were complaining about the sight of popular men's jeans. They were simply too baggy. Tired of seeing men, especially students and younger guys into the specific clothing of certain subcultures, walking around with increasingly lower pants that exposed boxer shorts and seemed to impede the ability to walk, many people made no secret of their loathing for the clothes items. But jeans are an essential component of the American fashion landscape, and it seems that while denim may go through many manifestations in tune with the times, the basic love of jeans isn't going away any time soon. That staying power is evident in an apparent 180-degree flip recently taken by the men's fashion industry: no longer much interested in the baggy models that have been so popular over the past decade or so, designers and buyers alike seem firmly enamored of the "skinny jeans" trend.
Traditionally limited to the realm of women's fashion, skinny jeans have a tapered leg with a close-fitting ankle, a major departure from the boot-cut and flare designs that are slowly being phased out. While these new skinny jeans arguably present a cleaner look, some models are also presenting their own problems in terms of wearability. Whereas baggy jeans were prone to slipping down and getting too much fabric in the way of walking, skinny jeans can prevent a full range of motion, making some guys say goodbye to their carefree, fence-hopping ways. As the fashion industry buzzes with interest in the new jeans, denim outlets are racing to develop pants that deliver the right look without being too constricting, a balance which often presents a challenge for clothes makers. One popular response has been the creation of jeans in more versatile, stretchable fabric blends.
Observing the change from baggy to tight is certainly amusing, and critics of both styles abound, though of course there are many devotees as well. Our interest? Aside from sharing the pain of having to "break in" our jeans with the other half of the population, we're thrilled about the opportunities that skinny jeans open up for men's accessories. Let's face it --with baggy jeans that trail excessive fabric from the waist down, there's little option left for elaborate jewelry to do its thing. But skinny jeans help create a great canvas for a variety of men's costume jewellery designs, from leather and silver bracelets to complex yet masculine pendants and well beyond. Affording a nice waistline, skinny jeans are also great friends with costume jewellery belt buckles, letting guys get in on a bit of the glam with designs that have just the right amount of sparkle or polish.
As we gear up for fall --one of denim's favorite seasons--, we're sure to see new better-fitting skinny jeans making merry with men's jewelry items that project personality without being tired or boring.

an unidentified celebrity wearing skinny jeans

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Congrats to Our Weekly Winners

Our prize category is filled with attractive and valuable items that will treat you or a loved one to something special absolutely free when you win as one of our contest entrants. You can fill out your information on our main site or place a regular order to be entered automatically. If you've won this week, take a few moments to select your prize and shoot us an email with your choice --and feel free to let us know your thoughts here on the blog as well!

This week's winners:
Esme McCrubb
Jacqueline Beardsmore
Mr John Ettery
Lynsey Rogers
Sally Barfoot
Josie Stinton

Congratulations to our prize winners and best of luck to all our entrants!

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Thursday, 9 July 2009

Vogue Goes Shopping for Value

Emanating a refined and historically choosy vibe from its glossy cover, the monthly fashion magazine Vogue tends to stand out among the slew of less serious publications. Famous among couture style mavens as well as those who simply like to imagine that they'll someday have to funds to go on a suggested shopping spree, Vogue offers its readers a glimpse of the world's catwalks and special secret finds in accessories and beauty, all while keeping its presentation slick and distinctive. With featured items and collections of pieces that frequently top the $1,000 mark, Vogue's pages have typically been limited to the realm of the imagination for many readers who might try to mimic the style with less pricey designer names (and in fact, some magazines specialize in taking the outfits presented in Vogue and other elite fashion publications and replicating them with cheap offerings from more accessible stores and brands). But lately, the luxury duds in Vogue have been taking a lesson from their less finicky cousins.
That's right, Vogue has taken on the topic of value. It may seem extraordinary that a publication usually filled with untouchable designs fresh off the world's most exclusive runways would highlight an item from Gap, but as readers have been finding out over the course of the latest crop of magazine issues, this is precisely what's happening. That's not to say that super-splurge Manolo Blahnik shoes and buttery leather Marc Jacob bags won't show up between the editorials, but the tone of the shopping guides and overviews of recent offerings are clearly oriented towards a more cash-crunched audience. The obvious reason is that the global economic downturn has taken its toll on the number of shoppers who can afford to drop thousands on new clothing items, and many people who have lost the ability to brazenly "charge it!" don't feel too drawn to pouring over pages full of things they can no longer have.
For many of Vogue's fans, the new trend is quite welcome. A Christmas special before the turn of the year offered shoppers a guide full of more affordable items that still carried the special nuances worthy of earning a Vogue approval. Since that issue, several new features have been introduced, including a "steals" section over the summer, which features many items under $500 (and some --gasp-- available for less than $100). If you've been wondering how costume jewelry would play into the deal, well, we won't be too surprised to find jaw-dropping diamonds and designer gems that could buy a house in many parts of the world replaced by more sensible, yet still captivatingly beautiful, pieces. With the effortless affordability of Swarovski crystals, Indian glass beads, filigree chandelier earrings, and other costume jewellery staples, the sparkle is sure to stay strong at Vogue, albeit in a fashion that's much more suitable to modern shoppers.
No doubt the magazine is waiting for the recession's end to have a celebratory romp with expensive designer pieces once again, but maybe --just maybe-- this stint with value will result in a more accessible fashion focus. What do you think?

Penelope Cruz on the cover of Vogue magazine

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Tuesday, 7 July 2009

The Brooch Inspired by a Bird

If you've ever seen a male peacock on display, you've likely been awed by the gorgeous array of feathers that make up the bird's tail fan. A luminescent and vivid screen of rich and complementary colors is supported by a geometric yet fluid structure that sets the stage for one of nature's most beautiful sights. It was with this structure in mind that our peacock brooches were created; acquired by us in a strictly limited edition, these stand-out pieces evoke the grace and splendor of the peacock, in costume jewellery materials that are sure to light up any choice of clothing. In fact, the exceptional beauty and intricacy of these brooches makes them the perfect choice for wedding jewellery, whether the pin serves as a focal point for a shrug or wrap, is worn like a corsage or choker, or is placed on the dress itself to add extra shine and sparkle to the bridal ensemble. But whether worn on the big day or on an exciting night out, reflecting the gray skies of winter or the hot brilliance of summer, these incredible crystal brooches are a stylish and extravagant choice.
Anyone who likes big gems is sure to fall head over heels for a Janeo peacock crystal brooch; positioned slightly off-center to create visual interest and contrast, an extraordinary thirty millimeter Swarovski crystal serves as both the backdrop and the central attraction of the piece. With an abundance of facets that reflect a rainbow of hues and a perfectly polished and smooth surface, this giant round crystal is a gem lover's dream. Surrounding this stone, a swirl of smaller rocks whip around the brooch, creating a sense of movement and extension that echoes the dramatic sweep of the peacock's tail. Starting off the series, a circle of small round Swarovskis are studded around the piece, while a second row of substantial, pointed oval crystals are arranged in a semicircle that curves around the center of the brooch in an impressive arc.

peacock brooch

Providing the finishing touch, an abstract, stylized swirl stretches from the middle of the central stone towards the perimeter of the costume jewellery brooch, ending in rounded points that add intrigue to the overall design. Within this swirl, two rows of round Swarovskis create a counterpoint of sparkle with horizontally-oriented lines, bringing the impression of the peacock to life. An incredible gift for jewellery lovers with a special taste for nature-inspired designs, intricate rhinestone jewelry, and abstract style, these crystal brooches can make any occasion extra-special. But they're not available forever –part of our collection of limited edition pieces, the rhodium-plated brooches only number one to three pieces per color (choose from silver or gold-toned settings). Evoke the elegance and intrigue of the peacock with one of Janeo's exclusive and exotic crystal brooches.

detail of peacock brooch

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Saturday, 4 July 2009

Bollywood Stars Light Up the Fashion World with Sparkling Style

The Indian film industry, which has been steadily gaining worldwide recognition after conquering entertainment fans in its own country for decades, has been lighting up the screen in India and around the world with new releases lately, adding further testament to the talent and sheer effort that go into popular Bollywood films. Over the past few seasons, the romance stories, action-packed thrillers, and big dance and musical pieces have delighted audiences, sparking extra interest from international film lovers as well as those looking for something a little different than the Hollywood flicks that parade their way through the summer blockbuster list in much of the Western world. There have been grandiose openings and special screenings, and many other events at which fans were able to get a glimpse of the stars and technical talents that have gone into producing Bollywood's latest crop of movies. The International Indian Film Academy Weekend, however, recently held in the bustling city of Macau, is one of the biggest events of the year, and calls for something a little special in terms of bringing the pomp of India's silver screen to the entrances, ceremonies, and parties surrounding the show.
This year, the special weekend didn't disappoint. While some awards ceremonies and other red-carpet events have visibly suffered from the global economic downturn, leading to subdued tones or a departure from flamboyant or ostentatious outerwear, the stars at the International Indian Film Academy Weekend came out in their Bollywood best, with some incredible fashion designs and jewellery items that have had reporters and gossip mavens babbling ever since. Strolling down the entryway to the event's prime location amidst a sea of fans and picture-takers, stars and crew caused cheers and accolades amid the industry's most enthusiastic supporters. In particular, Bollywood mega-star Amrita Rao captured the attention of many cameras with her simple black strapless gown, offset by some of the most eye-popping diamond jewelry we've seen in a while. Her luxurious diamond bib necklace, an intricately designed piece whose delicacy was nearly consumed whole by the size and sparkle of the stones, was a major hit, as were her matching chandelier earrings.
Many leading fashion brands were represented as stars made their entrances, from women's designs to the latest offerings from men's collections. Hoping, perhaps, to absorb a little bit of the spotlight from the film industry itself, Indian fashion took full advantage of the setting of the International Indian Film Academy Weekend, robing big screen names in their most precious outfits. From specialty gown designers to costume jewelry makers, accessories houses to up and coming shoe brands, the whole of the fashion industry was well-represented. The weekend has finished and the stars have likely slipped into more comfortable, if still quite stylish, duds, but the event has given Indian entertainment and fashion a welcome boost, especially during a difficult period that has seen fashion houses in some places close their doors.

Amrita Rao in a file photo

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Congrats to Our Weekly Winners

The winners are in; here are our prize winners for the week:

Michelle Byard
Jane McGregor
Tracey Boswell
Faiza Osman
Debbie Allen
Emma Croombs

If you've won, please send an email to the address you recieved in your winning notification, and if you'd like, post a comment here with your name and your choice of prize or thoughts about the contest.

Happy prize picking and good luck to everyone in the coming week!

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Thursday, 2 July 2009

Celebrity Fashion Lines Flummoxed

Most dedicated shoppers and fashion mavens have a particular designer or brand that makes their sense of style sing; whether it's a major luxury label or a lesser known private outfit, there's a name for just about everyone out there. In the last few decades, a growing trend among celebrities, especially entertainment's larger-than-life starlets, has been the creation of name-branded clothing lines touted, worn, and, at least during some point of the process, ushered towards design and development by the divas themselves. From swimsuit lines to full couture offerings, fashion and costume jewellery to accessories-only, celebrity fashion labels have opened up a new creative world to many actresses and musicians who hope to try their hand at the world of fashion design.
But sometimes, that hand doesn't turn out to stitch so well. As with any company, there are numerous reasons why a celebrity fashion label might go out of business, from mismanagement to personal crises to simple lack of popularity. It'd seem that a major cause of turmoil for stars with a penchant for design is –bet you didn't see this coming-- the current economic downturn. Yes, the havoc on the stock market, decline in value of many personal holdings, and dismal outlook on employment in the United States and in a growing majority of countries around the world may be causing problems for scores of people, but celebrities aren't untouched by the proceedings. The idea is simple, really: if people can't afford to make their mortgage payments, they probably won't be all that interested in the latest offerings in leggings from a favorite TV personality or movie star.
Finding out this fact the hard way, several celebrity designers have either put their production on hold or closed their doors altogether recently, resulting in some speculation about the viability of such lines within the fiercely competitive and exclusive realm of fashion design. Leading the list, Sarah Jessica Parker, of Sex and the City fame, found her label Bitten taking the plunge as the sole retailer of the brand declared bankruptcy. A distinct feature of the label was its relatively accessible price, leading some industry news hounds to wonder if Bitten will reappear in the near future.
In more direct demonstrations of the decline of celebrity-branded fashion, the lines of Mandy Moore, Jennifer Lopez, and Lauren Conrad have all recently either called it quits or announced a lull in production, which is likely to add to the woes of retailers across the country. While modern budgets can allow for the occasional costume jewellery splurge or other innocent indulgence, dropping a lot of cash on clothes that bear the name of Hollywood's most watched women is becoming less of a priority for a majority of shoppers. Though entertainment will likely retain its demand as the economy adjusts, the popularity of starlets on the screen and over the stereo isn't guaranteed to translate itself to fabric. In these trying financial times, wherein even well-established and adored fashion houses such as Christian Lacroix are up against the difficulties of a dwindling market, the fashionably famous may find themselves increasingly ousted from the designing world.

Mandy Moore with her clothing line, no longer in production

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