Shadora’s Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend

Buying fine jewelry on a budget sounds like an oxymoron, until you’ve checked out the beautiful baubles at www.shadora.com –where you will find fabulous pieces at incredibly low prices.

We’re talking up to 90% off list for gorgeous rings, earrings, bracelets, necklaces—pieces that look infinitely more expensive.

How does Shadora offer a wide selection of well-crafted, top-quality jewelry —from white topaz stud earrings to black diamond accented pendants—for such affordable prices?

The website features a limited number of items at a time, and each item is up for sale for no longer than 30 days, if the stock does not get sold out sooner. Because it doesn’t maintain a huge inventory, Shadora can bring you exciting new looks for a fraction of what you would pay retail.

We fell in love with a pair of 6.5 Carat Blue Topaz and 1/10 Carat Diamond and Sterling Silver Teardrop Earrings set in sterling silver—and got tons of compliments on them when worn with an LBD to an event at the Beverly Hilton recently. The list price was $479.99, but at Shadora.com they were a total steal at $39.99.

We’re not alone in this. Nearly 40,000 people had “liked” them on Facebook, but at last glance, there were still some left in stock.

For less formal occasions, but still providing some glitz, we liked the 2.5 Carat London Blue, White Topaz and Sterling Silver Earrings. Especially for $19.99.

Both sets of earrings are classic and will be in style for years to come. Shadora’s founders say that’s the goal, to offer jewelry that is selected with elegance and longevity in mind. They say they only choose pieces they consider classic, that will stand the test of time.

All items–some of which sell for under $12– come in a lovely gift box, at no additional cost.

An added bonus, unlike most other online retailers that require a minimum purchase for free shipping, Shadora’s merchandise—no matter how much or little you purchase, is shipped for free.

And by the way, only buyers who reside in New York state pay sales tax.

Check out the selection at www.shadora.com and don’t miss out on items you will treasure.

Writ Large: A Parker Pen Makes the Perfect Gold-Accented Accessory

 

June is not only the time for dads and grads. It’s the start of the golden season of summer. Golden sunshine, golden tans, golden jewelry and accessories – it’s all perfect for the warm weather months.

 

And so is an accessory that combines fashionability and function, a gold accented Parker pen, because elegance never goes out of style.

 

We are loving the feel of writing instrument from the company’s Ingenuity collection, which includes other styles in addition to the gold and black pictured here. The collection, which ranges in price from $160 -$190, combines the best in technology and style.

 

So write on, and enjoyed the pleasure of timeless quality, a feeling you just don’t get from tapping on the touch screen on your iPhone.

Giving New Life to Summer White Clothing

It’s pretty rare to get excited about a cleaning product, but that’s exactly what happened with something called Deo-Go. Imported from the UK, the almond-scented liquid removes those yucky, yellow underarm stains that come from using deodorant and antiperspirant.

 

Yeah, that’s right. It’s probably not your own perspiration that is staining light-colored garments – it’s the chemicals we use that stop us from sweating. Now, you don’t have to throw those close away. You can bring them to life again very easily. And what could be more economical and ecological than that?

 

With warmer weather approaching, I got out a pretty white tank top that had such stains and tried out the product. It’s really easy to use–you spray it on the stain, scrub it with, in my case, a toothbrush, let it sit for 30 minutes and then wash it.

 

I hand-washed this top, just for safety, but machine washing is fine as well. Voila! Amazing results. The stains are completely gone, making the top look absolutely brand-new. I will be using this on all my other white and light-colored clothing that need the treatment.

 

Deo-go comes in a clear, 9 ounce bottle with a spray pump and is available for about  $11  at Drugstore.com and Amazon.com as well as at www.getdeogo.com where you can also get more information.

 

The product offers a money-back guarantee and is also certified by the Good Housekeeping Institute.

Sounding Off on a Portable Speaker: Great Audio at Your Fingertips

Talk about amping things up. It may be about the same size as your smart phone, and as easy to tote around, but what the WOWee ONE Slim does is create a wall of sound wherever you may go.

The slim speaker came out earlier this year – the evolution of the original WOWee ONE, and has been one of the hottest items in portable audio.

 

The new incarnation is about the size of a standard smart phone, meaning it can easily fit in your pocket or purse.  Of course, it’s rechargeable and works with just about every device from an iPod to a laptop, an iPad to a MacBook.

 

Just make sure your neighbors don’t mind huge sound, because that’s what you will get from this product after you attach it to any surface including a wall, a desk, a surfboard or even a cooler.

 

Just think of the possibilities. In addition to being a portable speaker for any music player device, or for watching movies, it’s a great tool for presentations or for providing speakerphone capability for any cell phone with a standard headphone jack.

The WOWee ONE Slim and Classic come in several colors and styles, including black on black and black and chrome, as well as the recently released white WOWee ONE, a perfect companion for the white iPhone.

The WOWee ONE Slim boasts a dynamic response range of 40Hz – 20KHz and reaches 90 decibels, yet weighs only 4 ounces. The Slim has a battery life of 10 hours and measures just 4.3″ by 2.2″ by .7″, ideal for a pocket, handbag, backpack, or glove compartment, so it’s always handy.

The WOWee ONE Classic has a dynamic response range of 40Hz – 20KHz and reaches 90 decibels yet weighs 7 ounces. The Classic has a battery life of 20 hours and measures 4.7″ by 2.4″ by 1″.

The Slim retails for $89.99, and the WOWee ONE Classic at $79.99. Available at www.woweeone.com

Sound That Will Blow Your Socks Off in a Limited Edition Wireless Way

 

 

Hi-tech audiophiles will be falling in love with a futuristic new product from Parrot, and clamoring for a set for their living room—or any room.

 

Parrot, the leader in high-end wireless devices, is releasing a limited edition series of their Zikmu Parrot by Philippe Starck wireless speakers just in time for the holiday shopping season, in the striking metallic colors Ancient Gold and Electric Blue. (They’ve previously been available in black, white and red.)

 

The Zikmu speakers, fashioned in an ultra-modern sculpted shape, combine sophisticated wireless technology with the sleek artistry of renowned designer Starck, known worldwide for his architecture and product design. The design of the speakers reflects the inventiveness of his artistry and he says, his personality.

 

Here’s how they work. The wireless speakers feature a dedicated iPod® / iPhone™ docking station and Wi-Fi and Bluetooth® technologies. The two speakers communicate wirelessly with each other, allowing them to be positioned anywhere in any room. They deliver intense, 360 degree sound with spectacular clarity.

 

That means you can simply pop your mobile device into the docking station in one of the columns and spectacularly amplify all your favorite music, from Lady A to Led Z. You control the speakers from anywhere in the room using the intelligent remote control. At the same time, your device is charging up.

Along with music to the ears, you’ve got some gorgeous conversation pieces.

Available exclusively at Ron Robinson for Fred Segal, 8118 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles, (323) 651-1800 www.ronrobinson.com  $3,400 for the pair

Terrific Toffee, The Old-Fashioned Way

Terry's Toffee, in more than a dozen flavors, can be addictive

Using his grandmother’s recipe, Terry Opalek brings together the ingredients for a selection of gourmet treats that taste like a little bit of sweet, crunchy heaven.

Opalek and his partner Michael Frontier created Terry’s Toffee in 2002, and soon after, it became a favorite of Hollywood’s elite.

For the seventh year running, Terry’s Toffee will be in the green room and the dressing rooms at the Kodak Theatre as a special treat to the presenters, nominees and winners at this year’s Academy Awards

Coated in fine dark, milk or white chocolate, the toffee comes in 15 flavors, including McCall’s Classic and Dark—using grandma’s recipe, Peanut Butter Chocolate, Koffee Toffee, Lavenilla, Orange Blossom, Hazelicious, Asian Accent, Cran-Orange Passion, Peppermint Pistachio Crunch and Chai-cago Spice.

Yes, Terry’s Toffee makes its home in the Windy City, where the Grand Ave. store and a shop at the Andersonville Galleria also sell six flavors of yummy toffee ice cream.

But don’t worry if you can’t stop by those locations. You can mail order all the mouth-watering flavors, in sizes from ¼ to a full pound (about $9-$36), along with Terry’s “Beyond Biscotti.”

Terry’s also does designer gift boxes for the toffee and can brand it for you, your company and special occasions.

Terry’s Toffee, 1117 W. Grand Ave., Chicago (312) 733-2700, www.terrystoffee.com

Plugging into the Petersen

Ford Motor Co. is already very well represented at the Petersen Automotive Museum in Los Angeles, but now there’s a new kid on the street.  It’s Ford’s Electric Focus. A bright orange version of it has just joined the permanent collection of rare and collectible automobiles on display.

And who better to “induct” the vehicle than car guy Jay Leno, who had celebrities race the vehicle in a segment called the Green Car Challenge on his failed 10 p.m. show.  Leno, who still seemed bitter about the prime time program and not in a particularly good mood, nevertheless gamely answered questions about the vehicle and compared it to his own 1909 electric car that’s part of his extensive collection. He said it cost about $1.50 to charge the Focus and that the vehicle had a range of 100 miles– and went surprisingly fast, hitting a top speed of 78 mph. It takes about three or four hours to charge up the car through a 240-volt outlet, the type used for washing machines and refrigerators, and the battery lasts for up to 10 years.

The racing prototype of the vehicle was designed for Leno’s show and outfitted with Recaro racing seats and a vibrant orange paint scheme.  You can see it now in the museum’s permanent alternative power exhibit.

Lladro’s Limited Edition Treasures

A piece of Lladró always makes a beautiful gift for the collector, and now the famed Spanish porcelain company has come out with a limited edition line of beautiful sculptures and other pieces for the home called Lladró Atelier. Under that umbrella, two new collections, Rococo Mirrors and The Parrot Party, were showcased at a flamenco-flavored cocktail event at the company’s Rodeo Drive location, an occasion special enough that company president Rosa Lladro flew in from Valencia, Spain. Reflecting 18th century Rococo opulence, there are six mirrors available in six colors, each with a limited edition of 300, all hand-crafted by artisans in Spain, where the company was founded in 1958.

Lladro, 408 N. Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills, (310) 385-0690

Carry All and Looking Good

Fashion, form, function and affordability. Those words describe Caboodles, and if you’re not familiar with the brand, check it out. Since 1987, it’s made organizing your cosmetics fun and fashionable, with a variety of cases, some of which can double as handbags and be personalized for your needs. The “Envy” soft-sided bag shown here gives you outside zippered pockets and inner compartments to hold make-up, brushes, electronics. It has a hot pink satin lining and straps long enough to work as a shoulder bag. And get this, it’s only about $20.

Caboodles, available at Target, Amazon and some Walgreens stores, www.caboodles.com

Santa Monica: The New Place To Be

This wasn’t just a facelift.  It was a complete re-do of a ship that had long since sailed, one that took two years and cost several hundred million dollars. So when the curtain came up on the new Santa Monica Place last week, she was bold, beautiful, exciting and enticing, urging one and all to take out their wallets and spend, spend, spend. Bloomingdale’s was first to open its doors in a sneak preview of its boutique-style store, not anything like the Century City outpost and similar in feel to the Soho emporium. Curated for the local market with an edited collection of clothing, accessories and cosmetics—and reportedly the largest sunglasses wall in the country–Bloomies handed every invited guest a $25 gift card to get the shopping party started. The other department store anchor, Nordstrom, will open by the end of the month, creating even more of a frenzy.

The new CB2 store is already wowing crowds with its stylish and eminently affordable housewares, furniture and home accessories. Most of the shops are open already, and if you’re looking for trendy casual wear, this is the place, with Joe’s Jeans, 7 For All Mankind, Betsey Johnson, Fluxus, Kitson, Eva Varro, Juicy Couture and the ultra-hip All Saints vying for your business. Older-school brand names include Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Coach, Kenneth Cole, Michael Kors, Tory Burch and the still to open Tiffany & Co.

But the piece de resistance is the spectacular third-floor dining deck, with ocean and 3rd St. Promenade views, featuring six “chef-driven” restaurants—meaning non-chain eateries providing a new dimension to the local dining scene, like Xino, the Sandia, Zengo and Sonoma Wine Garden, which features walls made from wine crates, a 300-bottle chandelier and an ocean-view deck.  They’re expansive, expensive and it remains to be seen whether they’ll work in “this economy,” but we wish them the best. Meanwhile, there’s a fast-food court for hungry habitants with lighter wallets to grab a bite with the same great views. And it’s not the same old, same old there, either. Sarku Japan, Stefano’s Pizzeria and Sushi Itto are open, soon to be joined by Pinches Tacos and Fatburger.