The Lingerie Guide to the Universe

Lingerie does for a woman’s body what seasoning does for food. Just as the spices and herbs enhances the flavor of food, corsets, bustier, gowns, sexy bras and thongs enhances the visual effects of a woman’s body. I don’t know what primitive man first discovered adding herbs and spices to food, but, God bless him. Don’t get me wrong… I believe food can be quite tasty without spices; however, it is even better with them. Same for lingerie.

Lingerie accentuates the shape of a woman. Women are beautiful on their own, but lingerie can give that extra kick that makes them bubble with flavors never before imagined.

As I thought about that, I realized I had just made a connection between lingerie and food. How odd, what a strange connection when you think about it. Is there any real connection between lingerie and food? What about everything else in the universe? I think lingerie is linked with the entire universe, and I am out to prove it. Let’s take a look at food first.

From Lingerie to Food:

1) Lingerie

loose T-shirt made of cotton, polyester, nylon or diaphanous chiffon that can be worn like a Babydoll.

Polyester

[Synthesis / Alcoholic transesterification] ethylene glycol (doubly alcohol-terminated). Multifunctional monomers (i.e., glycerol) result in cross-linking

Glycerin

Glycerin is used in glycerin soap, in cosmetics and creams, in foods, in chemistry, and in glycerin mist.

Hence we come to food

2) Lingerie

French language, for women’s undergarments. These garments are eroticised in Western culture.

Eroticism

Paraphilia

Paraphilia

[Other paraphilias] sitophilia: sexual arousal from food.

And here we are at food again.

3) Lingerie

Merry widow

Merry widow -backed hook-and-eye flange, and the whole garment was lined with nylon voile. Nine long spiral wires were cased in black

Nylon

[Historical uses] conspiracy theorists surmise that cannabis sativa was made illegal because the fibres from the hemp plant, used for fabrics

Hemp

hemp (Cannabis sativa”) as a source of oil, food, fibre, etc. Yep, back to food again.

There you go, at least three ways lingerie is linked to food. What about other things?
Well, why not start with some of the obvious ones like sex:

Lingerie to Sex:

1) Lingerie

derived from the French language, for women’s undergarments. These garments are heavily eroticised in Western culture.

Undergarment

[History / Present day] at least in advertising. Sex became the main selling point, bringing to fruition a trend that had been building since at least the flapper era

Sex- see, I told you this one was obvious. Want a more obscure one?

2) Lingerie

French maid

French maid

They are a form of ladies’ Fantasywear that depending on design, details can be classified as lingerie

Fantasywear

clothing, usually including lingerie, that people wear in the boudoir for living out Sexual Fantasies.

Sex- Not so obvious that time.

3) Lingerie

Robe

Robe

Worn after bathing or other activities where the wearer is nude to keep warm and/or preserve modesty in times of no immediate need to fully dress.

Modesty

friend or family of the same sex

Sex

Ok, another easy one, love.

Lingerie to love:

1) Lingerie

French language, for women’s undergarments. These garments are heavily eroticised in Western culture.

Eroticism

is an aesthetic focused on sexual desire, especially the feelings of anticipation of sexual activity.

Lust

[See also] Virtues: Love, Romantic love, List of ethics topics

Love – See how easy that was?

2) Lingerie

French language, for women’s undergarments. These garments are heavily eroticised in Western culture.

Eroticism

Human sexuality

Human sexuality

[Topics in human sexuality] love

Love- Still too easy, lets see if we can make this link a little more challenging.

3) Lingerie

Robe

Robe

a garment made of towel like material and is typically worn at home after a bath or other activities where the wearer is wanting to cover up.

Towel

[Pop culture trivia / Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy] the towel can even be used in melée combat. You can use it to hide from the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Races from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy ( this also links lingerie back to the title of this article and Hitchikers guide to the galaxy for which the title was modeled after.)

[Fuolornis Fire Dragon] They often accidentally adored things to bits and hurt the ones they loved because of their rocket-booster breath and park-fence teeth. (That reminds me. I wonder what my ex is up to these days.)

Love

We did love, why not passion.

From Lingerie to Passion:

1)Lingerie

Robe

Robe

A gown worn as part of the religious dress of a cleric, chorister, monk, batizand, etc.

Choir

[Historical overview of choral music / Baroque music] passions and other music. He is also famous for his vast output in chorales, essentially stylistically harmonised

Chorale

passions and other works. These harmonisations are so well known that Bach’s name is virtually synonymous with the chorale in

Passion.

2) Lingerie

Corset by bone

Corset

[See also] Body modification

Body modification

teeth, and/or tongues, including amputation, burning, flagellation, piercing, skinning, and wheeling.

Flagellation

[Association with religion / Slavery] Flagellation of Christ, an episode in Jesus’ physical degradation leading to the Crucifixion. (See Passion) ( I’ll probably get letters on that reference)

Passion

3) Lingerie

Babydoll

Babydoll

it is a common garment for those who indulge in sexualized play-acting around ideas of infantilism.

Infantilism

[The psychology of infantilism / Psychological perspectives on infantilism] infantilism is usually regarded as a type of sexual roleplaying and is often viewed as a variation of BDSM.

BDSM

[Various practices / Switching] BDSM may encompass practices such as erotic spanking, flagellation, such as flogging, paddling or whipping

Flagellation

[Association with religion / Slavery] Flagellation of Christ, an episode in Jesus’ physical degradation leading to the Crucifixion. (See Passion)( Just to make sure I get those letters, and possibly death threats, rolling in.)

Passion.

Since I mentioned Jesus Christ in the last reference lets see how lingerie and the church are linked.

From Lingerie to Church:

1) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

[Compare] after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes in 1685, a revolt by the guerrilla Protestant “Camisards”

Edict of Nantes

(1598) and ordered the destruction of Huguenotchurches, as well as the closing of Protestant schools

Church- That’s kind of a negative relationship, lets see if we can find a positive one.

2) Lingerie

Robe

Robe

A gown worn as part of the religious dress of a cleric, chorister, monk, batizand, etc., in various
Choir

Terminology: A vocal ensemble which sings in a church, or sings exclusively sacred music, is called a

Church – Yes that’s much better.

3) Lingerie

Garter

Garter (clothing)

Order of the Garter, which traces its history to the Middle English poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.

Middle English

[Literary and Linguistic Cultures] Middle English was one of the three languages current in England. Though never the language of the church, which was always Latin

Church

I have no intention of picking on religion, shall we move on? Let’s try something people do in church, like getting married.

Lingerie to Marriage:

1) Lingerie

Garter

Garter (clothing)

and colorful garters were an object of display. In Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, “cross braced” garters are an object of some derision.

Twelfth Night (play)

Olivia asks him to marry her. The play ends in a declaration of marriage between the Duke and Viola, and Olivia and Sebastian

Marriage – Bet you didn’t see that one coming.

2) Lingerie

Garter

Garter (clothing)

Groom’s privilege to remove the garter and toss it to the male guests. The symbolism to deflowering is unambiguous.

Virgin

especially in regards to religious views of retaining one’s virginity before marriage. The term maiden

Marriage

3) Lingerie

Knickers

Knickers

1846 the New York Knickerbockers played the first game of “base ball” organized under those rules, in Hoboken, New Jersey, and were trounced 23 – 1

Hoboken, New Jersey

[Demographics / Post World War II] There are 19,418 households out of which 11.4% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 23.8% are married couples living together

Marriage

Too easy so far? Well, I own a lingerie and biker clothing store. Many have wondered what the relationship is, so, shall we try that?

From Lingerie to Motorcycle:

1) Lingerie

Corset by bone

Corset

Corsets are typically constructed of a flexible material (like cloth or leather) stiffened with boning

Leather

[Forms of leather / Leather from other animals] Leather is used to make items which need to be strong but flexible, such as motorcycle gloves.

Motorcycle

2) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

is a simple garment worn next to the skin to protect clothing from sweat and body oils. Chemise is the French term. Italians called it a “camicia”.

French language

[History / Modern issues] There is some debate in today’s France about the preservation of the French language and the influence of English (see franglais)

Franglais

old motorcyclist that I loved (play on “mieux vaut tard que jamais” — better late than never)

Motorcycle

3) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

is a simple garment worn next to the skin to protect clothing from sweat and body oils. Chemise is the French term. Italians called it a “camicia”.

French language

[Geographic distribution / Modern issues] Also, there are some French speakers in Lebanon, Cambodia, Egypt, India (Pondicherry), Italy (Aosta Valley)

Cambodia

[Transportation / Civil war and genocide] The locals normally use automobiles, motorbikes and buses. Velotaxis are an additional option often used by visitors.

Motorcycle

4) Lingerie

Bedjacket

Bedjacket

bedjacket is a light jacket, usually a peignoir, worn to bed while sleeping.

Jacket

jacket is a light coat.

Coat

The coat as an article of clothing for humans

Coat (clothing)

[Types of coats / Modern coats and jackets] Motorcycle jacket, a leather jacket, usually black, worn by motorcycle riders

Motorcycle

5) Lingerie

Unitard

Unitard

In erotic or costume use, they are usually referred to as catsuits

Catsuit

Unlike a unitard, its use rarely involves sports, and it may be made of leather, rubber, PVC, or velour

Leather

[Forms of leather / Leather from other animals] Kangaroo leather is used to make items which need to be strong but flexible, such as motorcycle gloves, jackets, mask, and skull caps.

Motorcycle

Sorry about the two additional references, they are my passions. My shop is located in Augusta Ga. What is the link?

Lingerie to Augusta Georgia:

1) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

[The history of the chemise] women’s shifts did not fall out of fashion until the early 20th century, when they were generally replaced by brassieres, panties, girdles, and

Undergarment

[Underwearing / Present day] The animated cartoon character Homer Simpson is often depicted sitting on his couch in his briefs drinking.

Homer Simpson

[Overview] Dooooh” from the films of Laurel and Hardy.

Laurel and Hardy

[Oliver Hardy] (January 18, 1892 – August 7, 1957) was born Norvell Hardy in Harlem, Georgia near Augusta, Georgia, in the United States of America.

Augusta, Georgia

(bit of a stretch on that one, lets try it in reverse)

1) Augusta, Georgia

[Famous Augustans] Laurence Fishburne, actor

Laurence Fishburne

as well as a recurring role as “Cowboy Curtis” alongside Pee Wee Herman (Paul Reubens) in the CBS children’s television show.

Paul Reubens

[Arrest II] as he stated that he was a collector of “erotic artwork” and he had a sizable collection of vintage erotica.

Erotica

[See also] lingerie (erotic underwear)

Lingerie

That one was a little more difficult. Shall we try something really ambiguous. Say, a Mountain?

From Lingerie to Mountain:

1) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

is a simple garment worn next to the skin to protect clothing from sweat and body oils. Chemise is the French term. Italians called it a “camicia”.

French language

[Geographic distribution / Modern issues] Vanuatu

Vanuatu

[Geography] – are also claimed by the French overseas department of New Caledonia. Most of the islands are mountainous and of volcanic origin.

Mountain

2) Lingerie

French maid

French maid

They are a form of ladies’ Fantasywear that depending on design details can be classified as lingerie

Fantasywear

or French Maid or Fraulein outfits ensembles, or by the use of materials such as PVC, Satin or Rubber

Satin

and plain weaves are the 3 basic types of weaving by which the majority of woven products are formed.

Plain

Plains may be more suitable for farming than plateaus or mountains.

Mountain

3) Lingerie

Corsage by elastic

Corsage

bouquet as a fashion accessory attached (usually) to dress

Bouquet

A group of television channels owned by the same company, e.g. British Sky Broadcasting or Turner Broadcasting

Television station

Because some regions have had difficulty picking up over-the-air signals (particularly in mountainous areas), direct-to-home cable or satellite stations provided service.

Mountain

Mountain not big enough? How would we link lingerie to the world?

From Lingerie to World:

1) Lingerie

Camisole

Camisole

camisole is a woman’s undergarment which covers the top part of the body. It is sleeveless and tight fitting in contrast to a loose-fitting

Undergarment

[Related topics / Present day] BVD

BVD

BVD arguably was, and remains, the best known initial trademark in the world

World

2) Lingerie

Stockings

Stocking

but now of knitted wool, silk, cotton or nylon (see Hosiery). The word stock used to refer to the bottom “

Cotton

native to the tropical and subtropical regions of both the Old World and the New World.

New World

The continents were new to the Europeans, who thought of the world as consisting only of Europe, Asia

World

3) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

[The history of the chemise] women’s shifts did not fall out of fashion until the early 20th century, when they were generally replaced by brassieres, panties, girdles, and

Undergarment

Undergarments can also have religious significance, as in the special temple garment worn by followers of the

Religion

[Compare with / Related philosophical stances] – essentially an extremely cautious means of building a supportable, evidenced understanding of our world

World

Let’s not stop with this little planet, how about the solar system?

From Lingerie to Solar system:

1) Lingerie

Camisole

Camisole

A Camisole can be worn over a brassiere or without one. Some camisoles come with a built-in underwire bra which eliminates the need for a bra

Brassiere

[Push Up Bras] Some more innovative push-up bras use silicone inserts or water sacks to imitate the fullness of a natural breasts

Silicone

[Chemical terminology] like a ketone group with Si in place of C (the same terminology is used for compounds such as silane, which is an analogue of methane)

Methane

[Methane not on Earth] Methane has been detected or is believed to exist in several locations of the solar system. It is believed to have been created by abiotic processes

Solar system

2) Lingerie

loose T-shirt made of cotton, polyester, nylon or diaphanous chiffon that can be worn like a Babydoll.

Polyester

[Applications] Holograms

Holography

Holograms are common in science-fiction, most notably Star Trek, Star Wars, and Red Dwarf

Red Dwarf

[Invented words / Nova 5] Red Dwarf left the Solar System was apparently the “dollarpound”, divided into one hundred “pennycents”.

Solar system

3) Lingerie

Corset by bone

Corset

garment worn to mold and shape the torso into a desired shape for aesthetic or orthopaedic purposes

Aesthetics

[Aesthetics in the visual arts] perceived mass, subliminal structure, linear dynamics, tension and repose, pattern, contrast, perspective

Pattern

The planets of our solar system are caught in an incredibly ancient pattern by the gravity of the
Sun

Solar system

Keep Going? Galaxy would be next.

From Lingerie to Galaxy:

1) Lingerie

Corset by bone

Corset

a woman’s corset was usually worn over a garment called a chemise or shift, a sleeveless low-necked gown made of washable material

Shift

derived meanings of change, such as red shift, Great vowel shift, paradigm shift

Redshift

[Introduction] The term redshift is also used for the observation that light emitted by distant galaxies is shifted to longer wavelengths

Galaxy

2) Lingerie

French language, for women’s undergarments. These garments are heavily eroticised in Western culture.

Eroticism

Sexual fantasy

Sexual fantasy

of Christian martyrs, many of whom resort to self-mutilation to preserve their virginity or chastity

Virgin

in many Neopagan traditions. The constellation Virgo represents a wide selection of sacred virgins.

Virgo

[Notable deep sky objects] to 10° west of Vindemiatrix (e Vir), this constellation is especially rich in galaxies.

Galaxy

3) Lingerie

Unitard

Unitard

unitard is a skin-tight one-piece garment with long legs and sometimes long sleeves. It differs from a

One-piece garment

sari

Sari

[The traditional philosophy / Styles] (the body as the world) unites with the ‘sharira-mandala’ ( the whole universe).

Universe

[Expansion and age, and the Big Bang theory] A fundamental aspect of the Big Bang can be seen today in the observation that the farther away from us galaxies are.

Galaxy

Finally, that gets us to the Universe.

From Lingerie to Universe:

1)Lingerie

Petticoat

Petticoat

skirt, dress or sari. The petticoat is a separate garment hanging from the waist.

Sari

[The traditional philosophy / Styles] (the body as the world) unites with the ‘sharira-mandala’ ( the whole universe).

Universe

2) Lingerie

Chemise

Chemise

[The history of the chemise] women’s shifts did not fall out of fashion until the early 20th century, when they were generally replaced by brassieres, panties, girdles, and

Undergarment

Undergarments can also have religious significance, as in the special temple garment worn by followers of the

Religion

[The nature and content of religion / Questions that religions address] Creation beliefs, which seek to explain the origin of the universe, the Earth, life, and humanity

Universe

3) Lingerie

French maid

French maid

They are a form of ladies’ Fantasywear that depending on design details can be classified as lingerie

Fantasywear

or French Maid or Fraulein outfits ensembles, or by the use of materials such as PVC, Satin, etc.

Satin

technique that forms a minimum number of interlacings in a fabric. If fabric is formed with a satin weave using filament fibers such as silk….

Filament

In astronomy, it is used to refer to any thread-like structure in the astronomical universe

Universe

There you go, lingerie is weaved into the very fabric of the universe. I knew it all along. Those that have used lingerie probably know it, too. I wonder if lingerie is the very meaning of life….?

Note: Here are a few more links that deserve mentioning.

Lingerie to Couple:

Lingerie

Babydoll

Babydoll

it is a common garment for those who indulge in sexualized play-acting around ideas of infantilism.

Infantilism

[The psychology of infantilism / Psychological perspectives on infantilism] infantilism is usually regarded as a type of sexual roleplaying and is often viewed as a variation of BDSM. In this variation

BDSM

[See also / Switching] Swinging

Swinging

[History] It has consistently found that swingers have better pair-bonds than monogamous couples. The most recent and most thorough study

Couple

Lingerie to Fidelity:

Lingerie

derived from the French language, for women’s undergarments. These garments are heavily eroticised in Western culture.

Undergarment

[History / Middle Ages and Renaissance] urban legend that Crusaders worried about the fidelity of their wives forced them to wear chastity belts.

Fidelity

From Lingerie to Monogamy:

Lingerie

Garter

Garter (clothing)

which traces its history to the Middle English poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight

[Plot synopsis / The Meeting with the Green Knight] Arthur refuses to blame Gawain and decrees that all his knights should henceforth wear a green sash in recognition of Gawain’s courage and honour

Honour

[Honour, sex, and violence] virginity, or at least to preservation of exclusive monogamy.

Monogamy

Jewelry Care and Cleaning Guide: How To Care and Protect Your Jewelry

Celebrating a Special Occasion with Jewelry!

Jewelry Care means being careful, how you store and and clean it!

How to care and protect Jewelry?

If your jewelry has value to you, it is valuable enough for you to want to take care of it. Jewelry Care means being careful you do no lose it as well as being careful how you store and clean it.

When you buy jewelry, any jewelry, from the most expensive fine jewelry to inexpensive costume jewelry, you buy it because it is beautiful. The gleam of the metal and the shine or luster and fire of the gems appeal to your aesthetic sense of beauty, based on what you can afford. The better the jewelry, the longer you want to wear it, perhaps even for rest of your life, and the longer you want it to have that like new glow, although some metals and finishes attain a warm patina with wear. What you don’t want, however, is scratched or gouged settings and dull gems. Accidents can happen, but all too often the jewelry is damaged by carelessness or not taking the few moments necessary to tend to the jewelry.

In most cases, being careful is the only care jewelry needs. Some types of jewelry, nevertheless, need special care because the gems may be soft, absorbent, or fragile.

Keep in mind that the harder the gem and the higher it is on the Mohs scale of hardness, the more durable it generally is. At time, a hard gem with high or distinct cleavage is apt to be fragile and may break or cleave if it is struck at the right angle. Hardness therefore is not synonymous with toughness. A tough gem may be soft enough to be more easily scratched but it is less apt to break or shatter. These characteristics have pertinence in wearing, cleaning, and storing jewelry, and in remodeling.

Metals have similar characteristic. The purer the silver and gold, the more easily it can be damaged. Also, you must consider the combination of metal in settings with gem or gems. What may be perfectly good to clean a metal, such as sterling silver, may not be the best for the gems. You have to consider the jewelry as a whole, not as simply metal or gems.

These point are tied in with the third point: the care you take with your jewelry to protect it from loss, both when you are wearing it and when you put it away for safekeeping. All the care in cleaning and storing will not matter if you lose the jewelry. The care you should take in this sense involves the precautions you would take to make sure you do not lose something you like and enjoy. That common sense, and it is common sense whether or not the jewelry is insured, and whether or not it is valuable. The precautions you should take with any jewelry that you like and that means anything to you, in fact, are simple common sense.

– Protection of jewelry

First of all, think about what you do when wearing jewelry. Rings are good example of how common sense can prevent loss.

More Rings are probably lost through carelessness than any other type of jewelry, because they are more apt to be taken off when being worn than pins or necklaces, bracelets or even earrings. So, Precaution Number One, if you wear rings, is to wear them at all times, or be careful with them as you are with your money and credit cards.

Men and women, incidentally, tend to regard rings differently.

– Storing and cleaning jewelry

When you take jewelry off, all jewelry and not only rings, what do you do with it? First, you should have a good and safe place for it. Second, that place should keep the jewelry safe not only from loss but also from damage.

The worst place you can put it is in a jewelry box already filled with other jewelry all jumbled together, where it can become scratched or more seriously hurt. The best place you can put jewelry is in individual leather or cloth cases or bags that will protect each piece from being damaged by other pieces of jewelry. If you do not have separate boxes from the jeweler for each piece of jewelry, at least put each piece in an individual case of some kind and do not drop it casually into a jewelry box.

In most cases, a plastic bag is a good substitute for leather or cloth. Plastic, however, should never be used with pearls, opals, and ivory, which need air to retain their beauty. Plastic, nevertheless, does have an advantage for other jewelry in that you can easily see the piece of jewelry that is in the bag. This method, incidentally, is also good for costume jewelry, which can be scratched as easily, if not more so, than precious jewelry.

Cleaning is also important in retaining and restoring the beauty and luster of jewelry with and without gems. Even gold can discolor from soaps and perspiration. Silver can be especially prone to tarnish, although almost all American sterling silver jewelry is coated with rhodium, an element of platinum, to prevent tarnishing. Any other silver that is worn all the time rarely needs polishing either, since wear retards tarnish. It still may need cleaning, though.

In fact, any metal may need cleaning now and then to remove dirt, soil, or soap film, as may gems. There are, in general, four methods of cleaning jewelry. Although all are safe for cleaning precious metal and diamonds, all are not interchangeable and safe for all kinds of jewelry. These are the methods most commonly suggested and used, but be sure to read further for the exceptions and for the precautions you should take with specific metals and gems.

-Detergents Bath. Mix a mild detergent and warm water in a small bowl or cup. Immerse the jewelry, brushing the pieces with an eyebrow brush. Rinse the jewelry under warm running water, being sure to put the jewelry into a tea strainer or cheesecloth for safety’s sake. Pat dry with lintels cloth. Do not use for soft gems or foe any jewelry that is strung, such as ivory or pearls.

– Cold water soak. In a cup or bowl, combine half cold water and half household ammonia. Put the jewelry in and soak for 30 minutes. Do not leave it overnight or for a long period of time. After 30 minutes, remove the jewelry and gently clean the front and back of the setting, if necessary, with an eyebrow brush before swishing the jewelry in the solution again and draining it dry on tissue. Do not use soft gems or any jewelry that is strung, such as ivory or pearls.

– Quick dip. Commercial jewelry cleaners generally employ the quick dip method. Since cleaners vary, you should read instructions carefully and follow them to the letter. Do not use cleaners on nay jewelry not specifically mentioned unless you check with a jeweler first.

– Ultrasonic cleaners. You will find several of these small machines on the market. In general, the principle is that of using high frequency turbulence to clean jewelry soaking in a metal cup of water and detergent. Again, be sure to read and follow the directions with the utmost care and do not use the machine on any jewelry not specifically mentioned. Not all jeweler, feel these machine are safe even for diamonds. Before buying one, therefore, be sure to check with your jeweler and get his advice.

These then are the common methods in general. Specific metals, and gems, require specific care. The methods described below are safe for the specific metals and won’t harm most gems. Keep in mind, though, that some gems need special care. Whenever you have any doubt about cleaning jewelry, be sure to consult your jeweler.

1) Copper

Copper will tarnish like silver in presence of moisture and sulfur. In most cases, however, a lacquer is baked on to prevent the jewelry from tarnishing. To clean copper, use any commercial cleaner that specifies it safe for copper. Do not use ammonia, which can erode copper.

2) Gold

The lower the number of karats, the more gold will discolor due to the higher percentage of base metals in the alloy. Mild soap, water and ammonia will remove the discoloration with ease.
One theory goes that you can prevent gold from leaving black mark on the skin by spraying the gold with hair spray. All you actually doing is adding a substance that can add to the tarnish. Keeping gold clean is the best way to avoid skin discoloration. In any case do not use hair spray on any gold with gems.

Gold-filled. Remember, the character of gold filled jewelry is the same as the karat gold that makes up 1/20 of the total weight, except that the jewelry will not last as long as the same jewelry in solid karat gold. Gold-filled jewelry can be cleaned the same way as karat gold, with mild soap, and a drop of ammonia.

Rolled gold plate. Rolled gold plate may contain less gold than rolled gold, but it should be cleaned the same way as gold-filled and karat gold jewelry.

Gold electroplate. Although the layer of gold deposited by electroplating may be 7 to 100 millionths of an inch thick, good gold electroplate can wear as well as rolled gold. It should be wiped clean regularly with a damp, soft cloth, and a mild soap and water solution may be used to remove any makeup. Do not use a treated cloth to clean gold electroplate.
Gold-washed or gold-flashed. Jewelry finished in this manner contains very little gold. The surface layer, in fact, is so thin that it may be negligible and wear off after a few times of being worn. Any cleaning, and particularly any rubbing, any remove the finish entirely.

3) Silver

Any commercial silver cleaner or silver cloth will touch up and clean silver jewelry. Soap, water, and a drop of ammonia will also clean silver that is very lightly tarnished or may just need cleaning to remove makeup and perspiration.

Silver-filled. Clean silver-filled jewelry in the same way as sterling. The older the jewelry, however, the more permanent the patina will be. Such a patina cannot be removed.

Silver plate (or silver electroplate). Silver plate, unlike gold, can last for years and can be cleaned in the same way as sterling silver. It can be re-plated, if necessary, although re-plating is more common in silver tableware than in jewelry.

4) Combination metals

Metals, including precious metals, are sometimes combined with other metals and with enamel. Be very careful in cleaning the metal that you don’t clean off the inlay or enamel. The same caution holds true for vermeil, which is sterling silver with karat gold electroplate. If you must rub, rub very gently with soft cloth.

5) Gems

Some gems need special care. That care includes both cleaning and storing gems. Be particularly careful with:

Amber. Amber is the softest of all gems and will be scratched by all other gems. Be careful in wearing it and always store it by itself. It darkens gradually with age and exposures to light and should be kept in a cloth or leather bag case.

Never use a rough clothe or clothe that may have dirt, dust, or grit on it to clean amber because of its softness. Never use acid to clean amber or wear amber when working with acids since acid will decompose amber. Alcohol and other solvents do not normally affect amber, however, unless it is exposed to them for a long period of time. For this reason, be careful not to leave amber in any cleaning solution, except very briefly. Hair spray and perfume can also affect amber.

Coral. Coral is relatively tough. Be careful with twig coral in both storing and wearing, since the thinner the twigs the more easily the coral can break. Remember, coral is not a mineral and its luster may be spoiled by preparations used to clean other jewelry.

Diamonds. Diamonds should be kept apart from other gems to avoid scratching the other gems. This rule holds true for both storage and cleaning. One expert suggests boiling diamonds for 10 minutes in soap, water, and ammonia to clean them.

Ivory. Wash ivory carefully in soapy water, drying it with a damp cloth. Never soak ivory in soap and water, however, since soaking can cause it to crack or break. If you are cleaning ivory beads, do not get the string wet because the string will stay wet and can affect the beads. Do not use commercial jewelry cleaner or acid.

Ivory darken with age. It can be bleached by sunlight or peroxide. If peroxide is used, do not soak the ivory in it, and avoid wetting any string with which ivory beads are strung with the peroxide.
Keep in mind that ivory is permeable and relatively soft, factors tending to make it contract or shrink in cold and expand in heat. The combination of temperatures, along with soaking and drying out, can lead to the cracking of the ivory. Wiping it carefully with a soft, damp cloth, therefore, is probably the best method of cleaning ivory.

Jet. Jet, although tough, is soft and should never be kept with other jewelry that can scratch it. Scratching diminishes its polish and lessens its value to collectors.

Lapis Lazulli. Despite its softness, Lapis Lazulli wears well and is popular for men’s jewelry and especially men’s rings. Even though it may scratch, the scratches are not difficult for a good jeweler to polish out.

Malachite. Malachite is soft and is not tough like jet. It breaks easily and should be worn with care. It also scratches easily, losing its polish. Be careful wearing it next to your skin, which can turn malachite dark or black.

Moonstone. Moonstone’s softness means that it needs care. Moonstones should be kept by themselves and cleaned carefully with only a very soft cloth and soap and water.

Opals. All kinds of opals are fragile and require care, the most care of any other gem. The polished stones are usually thin and may crack or craze. One cause may be extremely cold weather, indirect sunlight, in hot dishwater, or when handling frozen foods. Cold weather may also cause opals to shrink, which means they can fall out of the setting. Because of their softness, they are easily scratched and may absorb dirt or grit, another reason for avoiding dishwater and being careful in cleaning them.
Opals contain water, sometimes as much as 10%. Thus, they may dry out. For this reason, some experts suggest leaving them in water, in a mixture of water and glycerin, or in mineral oil to keep them from drying out and losing their fire, whenever they are not being worn. Use only a mild soap solution and a soft cloth to clean them. Never put opals in plastic bags, commercial jewelry cleaner, or acid.

Pearls. Both Oriental and cultured pearls are genuine pearls and need a certain amount of special care. Cosmetics (including hair spray), dust, dirt, and particularly perspiration can affects pearls. They should be wiped carefully only with a soft clothe after wearing and kept in satin-lined box, never in a plastic bag. Because their softness, cars should be taken not to scratch them. Pearls need to be worn and allowed to breathe. Do not use commercial jewelry cleaner or acid to clean them.

Peridot. Peridot scratches easily and tends to lose its polish. It should be stored and worn carefully but no special cleaning is necessary.

Topaz. Topaz should be kept in dark, literally. The gems tend to fade or pale in light, and some yellow-brown topazes on display in museums have turned clear after several years. Remember, too, it cleaves easily. It does not require special cleaning methods.

Turquoise. Since turquoise is very porous, it will absorb all sorts of impurities, especially if it is exposed to dirt and grease, such as in working in the yard or in washing dishes.

Turquoise tends to change color with age. It may lighten, darken, or streak. According to an old wives’ tale, burying turquoise in dirt restore the color, but the advice does not say for how long or what amount of dirt might be absorbed. You are probably better off learning to appreciate the change in color.

Never expose turquoise to ammonia, which will spoil the surface by pitting or spotting. Jewelry cleaner and acid will also injure or destroy turquoise.

To sum up, one of best methods of cleaning jewelry is simply to use mild soap, water and a drop of ammonia, even though ammonia should not be used with certain gems. Commercial jewelry cleaners are also available at fine jewelers, and these are safe, too, for most, but not all, jewelry. Be surer to read the directions on any commercial cleaner carefully and to follow them.

When in doubt about cleaning any jewelry, ask your jeweler what he would suggest. Remember, a watchmaker is not a jeweler. For expert advice and help, you need a jeweler who knows metal and gems, because in some cases you may be better off bringing the jewelry into the jeweler’s for cleaning.

An Introduction to the Suit Jacket

Without a doubt, the most elegant item of clothing in a man’s wardrobe is the suit jacket. It comes as part of a set with matching trousers and sometimes with a vest in the same or contrasting fabric.

There are two main types of suit jackets – the single-breasted jacket, usually with notch lapels and the double-breasted jacket, strictly with peak lapels. Occasionally, you may find a suit with a mandarin collar but it’s not mainstream. Shawl lapels are commonly use in a tuxedo jacket.

Single-breasted jackets have a single row of buttons down the front, usually two or three; there may be an occasional four, commonly for very tall men. The jacket’s front sides only overlap enough to permit buttoning.

A double-breasted jacket has two rows of buttons, and the front overlaps enough to allow both front sides to be attached to the opposite row of buttons. These jackets were all the rage in the 80s and seem to be going through a revival of sorts with some recent high-profile adopters in David Beckham, Jake Gyllenhaal and even Prince Charles. The current double-breasted jackets though are only remnants of their former selves – gone are the big shoulder pads, they are cut shorter and the bulk factor is removed altogether allowing shorter men the opportunity to don one without looking all swamped up.

Jacket Fit. The fit is the most important part of the jacket and I can’t stress that enough. People have different comfort levels with how tapered they wear their jackets. This is usually done at the waist to allow the jacket to closely follow the contours of the body. It all depends on how comfortable you feel in the look. You may have noticed men who power-dress, bankers and management consultants for instance all wear tapered jackets as it is what basically creates the image. To look good in a suit, you need not have your jackets fitted to that level unless you like it that way. Although be careful that it’s not too loose either as that creates the opposite effect of a shabby image. Make sure it’s shaped well on you and the fabric does not pinch at some corners and hang loose at others.

Here are a few things other you will want to look at to ensure the rest of your jacket fits well. The waist button should rest just below the natural waist of the wearer. The length of the jacket should be in line with the middle knuckle of the thumb and the back should rest just a little below the bottom. The cuffs should rest just a little above where the wrists. This leaves room for the shirt cuffs to be seen, usually around half an inch.

Jacket Shoulders. Jackets are usually built around the shoulders, and this structure is essential to the fit of the garment. The most important function of the jacket shoulders is to create symmetry. People come in different shapes and sizes and that is true of their shoulders too. Some men have extremely broad shoulders, others drooping and some will even have shoulders of different heights. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that and a well-stitched bespoke jacket will easily help to create symmetry. The padding of the shoulders is the place to start. Make sure the shoulder lines are well-defined but not exaggerated. For most people excessively large shoulder pads, for instance those that extend beyond the natural shoulder line creates a disproportionate look. On the other hand, if you naturally have small shoulders, having the shoulder pads very slightly extend beyond your shoulder line, will correct the look for you. It’s all down to your body type.

The thickness of the padding is the next thing to look at. If you naturally have shoulders of different heights, you can use the padding of varying thickness to easily correct that for you. As a general rule with shoulder padding, gone are the days when bulky shoulder pads were in trend. Today’s jackets largely have a thin padding with a slightly downward natural slant. Over-padding causes the neck and head to be engulfed by the jacket, and too thin padding does not allow the jacket to have the formal look that a suit jacket is supposed to create. What a bespoke jacket does is to create evenness and symmetry no matter what your natural shoulders are like.

Jacket Lapels. Lapels are the folded flaps of cloth on the front side of the jacket; a continuation of the jacket collar that stretches down to where the buttons begin. Lapels come in different styles and options. The most common variance of the lapels is the width. For a classic look, a moderate-width lapel is best and it works well on most occasions.

There are three basic types of lapels. The most common is the notched lapel and is the type used on single-breasted jackets. A suit jacket with notched lapels is often considered the most formal way of dressing and the type adopted by businessmen across the board. The second type, the peak lapel is more dressy than notched and commonly used on a double-breasted suit. Peak lapels create a broader and stronger silhouette with it’s fuller looking edges and arched angles – more of an occasion look and might be a bit much for the working day unless of course it comes on a double-breasted jacket. Shawl lapel is the third type and is usually found on tuxedo and dinner jackets. Here, the lapel and collar are not separate – the under collar is cut in one garment front with the centre back seam joining the two halves.

Jacket Sleeves Buttons. One of the things that distinguishes a bespoke jacket from an off-the-rack one is functioning sleeve buttons. In fact it has become fashionable to leave the last one unbuttoned as a statement to say that the jacket is custom-made. Most suits these days have four sleeve buttons but three is not uncommon. Regardless of the number, there should be at least as many of them as there are buttons on the waist, and they should be placed within a half-inch or so above the hem. Also sleeve buttons should always match the waist buttons.

Jacket Pockets. There are three typical styles of pockets on a jacket. The first is the jetted pockets. This type of pocket is sewn into the lining of the jacket and only a narrow horizontal slit appears on the side. As they appear nearly invisible, it contributes to a very sleek and polished look and frequently found on formal wear.

The second type of pocket is called the flap pocket. Flap pockets are like jetted pockets with an additional flap sewn into the top of the pocket, thus the name. It covers the pocket’s opening. Flap pockets are the most common type on suit jackets and nowadays is tailored such that the flaps can be tucked inside the pocket thus creating the jetted pocket appearance. This gives wearers’ the option of wearing the suit one day with the jetted pocket look and another with the flap pocket look.

There are also patch pockets, the least formal, and like the name suggests, a cloth is patched on the outside of the jacket to make it into a pocket.

Some bespoke jackets also come with a ticket pocket, another customisation that distinguishes a bespoke jacket from a ready-made one. It’s a smaller pocket placed above the standard pocket on the right side or occasionally on the left if that’s the wearer’s dominant hand.

Pockets are, usually, horizontally cut, but on some less formal jackets like the sports jacket you will find that they are made with a slight slant.

Moving up and common to all jackets is the breast pocket – basically a jetted pocket found on the upper-left chest. It’s purpose is not that of a pocket as such and is used more commonly for putting a display handkerchief or pocket square.

Inside pockets differ from jacket to jacket. Off-the-rack ones don’t often come with one. On a bespoke suit, it depends on the customisation requests but as a standard there is normally one on the left side and it is sewn into the lining. Some additional inside pockets for holding pens and/or credit cards are also not uncommon, another signature that the jacket is bespoke.

Jacket Vents. Vents are flap-like slit(s) in the back bottom of the jacket designed to accommodate freer movement while a person is seated for instance and for easier access to trouser pockets for the wallet. On the bespoke jacket there are three options – ventless, center vent and side vents.

Ventless jackets as the name suggests have no vent and is commonly found on Italian-style suits offering a sleek look for the back side of the jacket. Center vent is one single slit in the center of the jacket. A jacket with side vents has two vents, one on either side, usually where the trouser pockets are placed.

If there’s one point to take away after reading through the article, make sure it’s “fit”. A well-fitting suit covers a multitude of sins you may make in fabric, color and style.