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4 Best Tote Bags for Work to Look Stylish at the Office

Not so long ago, we talked about some of the best tote bags to use if you are a teacher. Inspired by our readers’ requests, we decided today we offer you one of our styling-types of articles – about the best tote bags for work you can wear this summer. However, more than just tote bags, we have some fashion suggestions and tips you might enjoy as well. Without wasting even more time, let us see today four best tote bags for work and some fashion ideas for this summer!

1. Pantone’s Ultraviolet Style with Canvas Zippered Tote Bag

As you probably know by now, Pantone color of the year 2018 is ultraviolet, a powerful, deep, mysterious, and lively violet nuance. You already saw it on fashion runways, in the latest hair color trends, accessories’ trends and more. If you love to follow some of the most significant styling tendencies, we have the best tote bag for work for you today: a heavy canvas sizeable zippered tote bag in a two-tone design, featuring ultraviolet handles, zipper, and bottom hems. However, how can you wear this large and comfortable tote bag to the office so you can look chic and modern? We have some suggestions for you!

  • Pick a pair of violet trousers – for more formal outfits, silk or velvety fabrics work the best; for casual days, jeans and cotton will make you feel comfortable while looking smashing;
  • A white fitted shirt works with everything you want to wear in a white-violet color scheme;
  • A pair of medium-heeled sandals and a gorgeous pedicure finish the outfit in high style;
  • If you love accessories, you can also wear an oversized bangle bracelet made of stacked beads bracelets in multiple nuances of purple and violet;
  • A white-and-purple two-tone outfit mix looks striking; therefore, keep your makeup to a minimum for a casual or semi-formal work day.

The tote bag is large and sturdy, able to carry your laptop, work stuff, and personal belongings safely and with no worry in the world.


2. Casual Tri-Color Tote Bag with Autumnal Colors

Some summer and early fall work days need a bit of toning down, especially if it is chilly outside and you have a casual day at the office with lots of problems to solve little time for sitting and a need for stylish comfort. For such days, we recommend you a jeans-based outfit with low-heeled shoes and a large solid tri-color canvas tote bag to match your attire. Here is what you can pick for a pleasing appearance:

  • Pick a pair of skinny jeans in a dark blue nuance;
  • Add an olive elbow-sleeved fringy blouse that matches the tones on the tote bag;
  • Continue with nude shoes with low heels for walking around the office all day (and pay attention to some subtle golden inserts as they offer a bit of glam to this rather demure look);
  • Wear a cute necklace with large creamy beads for contrast with the olive blouse and perfect integration in the entire nude-creamy ensemble (if it also offers a sparkle of golden shine, the better);
  • We also recommend nude makeup, a fantastic trend that provides comfort and natural beauty to women of all ages.

One of the most considerable advantages of the tri-tone best tote bags for work is that they feature a high number of color combinations, allowing you to create endless outfits and color schemes with your favorite clothes – in other words, buy more such totes to look different and fresh every day!


3. Hot Denim-Based Outfit for Formal Wear

Whoever said denim is casual fabric, appropriate for informal wear only, did not see some fantastic fashion catwalk combinations. We have one for you today. First, pick a sizeable durable denim tote bag for work in a classic blue jean nuance. The size and durability of such bag guarantee you will carry all your work gadgets, documents, personal items, and even some shopping items safely. Nevertheless, let us see how you can turn a canvas tote bag into a stylish piece together with our suggestions!

  • Start with a fitted short-sleeved denim dress in a formal office-style cut and design;
  • Spice things up with a pair of high-heeled black sandals in a rock star type of design with laces and other adornments;
  • A black stacked bracelet with silver or stainless steel insertion will work great with the denim and the sandals;
  • Do not forget your oversized trendy sunglasses and maybe some earrings to match the bracelet if you pick an updo for today's’ work meeting;
  • As for makeup, this is a feminine, yet bold outfit, so make sure your makeup matches it without overshadowing your attitude – which is your most precious accessory.

Keep in mind that denim is probably one of the most versatile fabrics in the world. A denim tote bag will work beautifully with denim jeans, dresses, skirts, and jackets (in the fall), so pick one and turn all your outfits into styling trends!


4. Queen of Style Outfit with Burlap Tote Bag

Now, this is an outfit to die for – and not only for work but for any formal meeting or event where you can wear a stylish and innovative purse. If you want to stand out from the crowd, you can forget for a second the almighty black large office purse and switch to the new IT bag: the fashion large burlap briefcase-style tote bag! The burlap’s natural creamy pink nuance is the perfect canvas for you to paint on a memorable office or party outfit that will keep people talking for days!

  • Start with a simple long-sleeved stretch blouse in a soft pink nuance;
  • Add an asymmetric wavy silk skirt with pale pink flowers against a pearl-gray/soft purple background;
  • Finish with a pair of high-heeled black tango-style sandals;
  • Wear a pair of long black earrings if you choose a loose updo for that particular day.
  • We also recommend a soft style of makeup in the nude or based on soft pinks and purples to light up your face.

The burlap tote bag finishes this type of outfit in a novel, a bit-disrupting manner – which makes the ensemble even more interesting. The mix of silk, jute, suede, and stretchy blouse fabric makes an exciting collage of textures – one that most likely will enhance the best of your features. Such an attire, however, works best for genuinely regular workdays, meetings, and events, a Devil-Wears-Prada style that is jaw-dropping.

Conclusion

We hope you found these fashion suggestions and our best tote bags for work ideas useful and actionable. If you have more styling tips that include fashion tote bags and cool outfits for casual workdays or official and serious business meetings, feel free to share them with us!

Written by Priscilla Greene — July 31, 2018

13 Fantastic Gifts for Boys to Celebrate Teenagers as they Deserve

Some say it is harder to find the proper gift for a teenage boy than a teenage girl. Nevertheless, if you are a parent or a friend of a teenage boy, you should consult this list of gifts for boys ideas to get your inspiration.

As long as you know the young man’s tastes, preferences, hobbies, and (secret) desires, things should work out smoothly. We hope our previous list of sweet sixteen gifts for teenage girls was useful if you were looking for unique presents for a young lady.

In the same spirit of helpfulness, we have today 13 fantastic gifts for boys ideas, so you have a starting point and share it with the others interested in getting a teenage boy a memorable present.

1. Game Console

 

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Of course, a teenage boy already has a PC or a laptop, but game consoles come with a flair of their own, especially because some games are exclusive to consoles.

You can investigate him, his friends, or his colleagues to learn what he wants best (an X Box or a PS 4, for instance), or you can ask him directly if you want to make sure. Either way, a game console is the best idea for teenagers who love to play games.

Of course, you can add a few console-dedicated video games to make the surprise complete. If he already has a console, you can orient yourself towards another piece of tech, such as a tablet or even a laptop.

2. Daypack Laptop Backpack

Speaking of laptops and tablets, if the boy needs to step up his school or casual rucksack game, you can get him a colorful, slick, masculine, yet fun laptop backpack so he can carry his books and his gadgets neatly.

A quality daypack laptop backpack can host all his personal belongings, precious laptop/tablet, and other items in a safe way. Make sure you get the model featuring comfortable ergonomic padded straps as the young man needs freedom of movement and no carrying discomfort.

If you want to make things even more appealing for the boy, you should personalize the backpack before you offer it.

You can ask professionals to apply a monogram on the rucksack or adorn it with a cute print, a message, a cool hashtag, and more. Who said gifts for boys are boring or hard to find?

3. Wireless Headphones

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What teenager these days does not listen to music everywhere he goes? Get him a pair of slick, fresh, super high-quality, and stylish wireless headphones.

Some brands represent excellent choices regarding sound quality, hi-tech features, and price. Get a pair of wireless headphones for any occasion requiring celebration: birthdays, name days, Christmas and other holidays.

He will love the new addition to his gadget collection and will hold the headphones close.

4. Board Games or Card Games

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We know many teenage boys love to play video games, but board games and card games are an excellent choice if he is the sociable type loving to spend a night with friends playing board games or society games.

Many such games have a compelling educational component, besides the entertaining one, and he will appreciate smart games aiming to develop players’ knowledge, vocabulary, strategic abilities, decision-making processes, and problem-solving skills, imagination, and more.

Ask around and learn what style of games he and his friends like to play, then ask a professional seller in a games’ shop for recommendations related to age, game difficulty, and game popularity.

From puzzles to strategy games, and from imagination-centric collaborative games to competition ones, you have infinite possibilities. If you want a challenge as a parent, take a board game that engages the entire family, if you are the kind of people loving to have fun with their older and younger kids alike.

5. Touch Screen Gloves for Smartphones

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If you teenage son or friend already has a smartphone, you can throw in some touch screen gloves in your gift basket. Winter touch gloves for smartphones make a great gift for Christmas or a winter birthday, not to mention Valentine’s Day or some other special occasion.

As we know by now, teenagers and high school adolescents cannot stay away from their phones and tablets. Winter comes with texting and scrolling issues when kids are outside.

Therefore, a pair of touch-sensitive gloves will be a godsend and one of the most appreciated gifts for boys in the family and friends gang.

6. Travel Water-resistant Duffel Bag/Weekender

Teenage boys do have the right age to start traveling on their own or together with their friends or colleagues. They usually go on a school trip, a summer/winter camp, a visit to relatives in another city they need reliable and cool travel gear.

For this reason, you should consider getting him a travel water-resistant duffel bag. Look for a medium-to-large weekender that features an adjustable shoulder strap, solid handles, a polyester fabric body for water and dirt resilience, pockets, and solid zippers.

The young man may use such a duffel bag for his gym and sports practice and activities, but a fancy trip requires durable and cool travel gear – and this is what such a bag is.

7. A Trip to an Awesome Destination

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Now that we already talked about traveling, you know your teenage son needs to expand his horizons from a cultural and social point of view – and the best way to achieve this is by traveling.

Either you go on a trip abroad together as a family, or you send him to the school on a trip somewhere else, you will do him a lot of good. Buy him those plane tickets or make the necessary reservations and celebrate a special birthday or a special holiday by allowing him to see and experience the world.

As we said before, traveling is probably the most entertaining education mean and a surefire way to build personal and social skills in any person. For this reason, gifting a trip to a teenage son, grandson, brother, or best friend is a way of telling him you trust him as a man and a human being and you want him to learn on his own the beautiful intricacies of this world.

One of the best gifts for boys of all ages, a trip is a surefire way for him to make some unforgettable memories.

8. Tickets to Events He Loves

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People who love music, for instance, remember every concert they ever attended. People who love theater still remember the thrill, the chill, and the emotions they had when they saw their first play.

Should we go on about those passionate about sports cheering for their team on a full stadium? You get the idea. If you son, friend, or colleague shows an ardent interest in the form of art/entertainment, gift him tickets to such an event.

Music concert tickets to see famous bands, music/film festival tickets, shows, art galleries, opera and theatre, air shows, sports competitions, geek conventions are all perfect opportunities to offer a young man the memories and the experience of a lifetime.

From the Super Bowl to San Diego Comic-Con, you have dozen+ events to consider as best gifts for boys. Pick the one that will make the boy the happiest and offer him a unique experience.

9. Driving Lessons

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What boy does not want to learn how to drive and get his license and even car? If he is of the right age, you can get him the driving lessons he so much desires. You can take the boy out to test-drive (of course, the adult drives) some fantastic and hot cars.

If he is into driving and vehicles, you can take him to a car race. Driving lessons are as useful as they are fun, so make sure the boy is ready to embark on this new journey of his life and pass the challenge with flying colors.

10. A Shopping Voucher for Clothes

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Your son is growing up fast, and he always needs new clothes. Instead of buying clothes for him, why not celebrate a nice birthday or Christmas by offering him a shopping voucher so he can buy the clothes he likes and needs?

Allowing a teenage boy to shop for himself builds self-confidence and tastes, teaches responsibility, and allows him to taste the freedom of adulthood.

As a parent, you should not frown upon his choices, in case some are not upon your tastes, but make it an educational opportunity and show him where and how he should have made better decisions.

Some boys and young men do not necessarily like to shop for themselves, while others know exactly what they want regarding personal style, so this is an excellent occasion to instill some independent-life skills in your teenage son or best friend.

11. Grooming Products

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Teenage boys need (or will have to soon enough) to learn how to take care of themselves. While the first shave is an important father-son moment, boys these days have to learn what products to use and what things work better for their age, style, skin type, even dermatological problems in there are any.

If you want to offer your son a proper introduction in the grooming and styling products for adolescents and men, you can take him out shopping and allow him to pick products that are on his tastes. You can also offer a full set of grooming as a gift, or offer him a voucher instead so he can buy whatever he needs.

Similar to the case of clothes, young boys need you to trust them they will make the best decisions. It is also an excellent opportunity for them to feel mature and independent, as they need their own set of grooming products instead of borrowing razors and aftershaves from their fathers’ cabinets.

If your son also wants some funky cool haircut, you can pay the stylist session as well. It is crucial that he finds what suits him best and what he likes more, even if he will make a few mistakes along the way.

12. Adventures and Activities

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Did you ever hear your son, little brother, or best friend talking about some activities and adventures he might like? We are talking about snorkeling, trying some extreme sport like parachute jumping, horseback riding, go-kart racing, and so on? Well, this is your chance of making a boy happy!

Reservations, tickets, and bookings for adventures, sports, and fun activities are possible challenges for adults, not to mention that many are more than affordable. Your son may want to experience an adventure park, a bungee jump, kart races, paintball with his friends or scuba diving.

Find such opportunities in your area and offer them as a birthday gift. If he dreams of bigger adventures, make a trip out of them (he already has the travel duffel bag!) together with the entire family.

After all, how many times in life does one have the occasion of being there at the F1 competition, surfing with the pros, or visiting Paris and its Disneyland?

13. Hobbies and Passions Related Gifts

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If the celebrated teenager already has some well-defined talents, hobbies, passions, and skills, the easiest way to make him happy is to appeal to those talents.

If he loves piano music, you can get him an 88-keys digital piano for him to practice. He will make his music and feel like a real artist. The same goes for a new guitar or another musical instrument. Sports fans and young athletes always want the newest type of sports gear.

Such items may be expensive, but if Harry Potter is an example, nothing beats a Nimbus 2000 broomstick for a competitive boy who wants to lead his team to glory, does it?

From all the gifts for boys in all the world, the ones directly speaking to his passions and talents are the best ones. You can also consider new surfing board, upgraded ski gear, a new skateboard, art kit, professional writing software, new sports gear and sports bag, and so on. Such gifts work for brothers, best friends, and schoolmates as well.

Learn what the teenager in question loves as a hobby or even talent-based career and offer him a gift in that area. There is always some upgraded tool or instrument he desires, so things are quite easy in this regard.

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed our list of gift for boys and you have now some sources of inspiration to make the teenager a lovely surprise. If you have other suggestions for our community, please feel free to share your tips and ideas!

Written by Priscilla Greene — July 30, 2018

16 Sweet Sixteen Gifts for Girls to Make Her Feel Truly Special

The sweet sixteen anniversary is significant for both a girl and her parents. She will have a party and plenty of occasions to make unforgettable memories together with her family and friends. But what about the sweet sixteen gifts? If you are her parent, best friend, a member of the extended family or a dear party guest, you have to think about a great gift to celebrate the event. Today, we have 16 sweet sixteen gifts ideas for girls to make them truly special and help them build those unbreakable memories.

1. Pearl Pendant

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Pearls have something fascinating about them, a discrete shimmer, an intrinsic beauty, and a rich symbolism that will make any girl fall in love with such a piece of jewelry. Pearls are not grandma’s jewelry anymore, as the new trends come with fresh designs and beautiful montages with a modern twist.

You can get her a pearl pendant as probably her first valuable piece of jewelry to hold and cherish as a family heirloom. Some necklaces come with gold or silver chains in demure and feminine combinations, while others play on the wild and rebel side and mix in leather or other metals.

A sixteen-year-old girl is mature enough to understand the value and the preciousness of such a gem, and she will wear it with joy on this occasion and all the future ones. When she grows up, she will know that among all her sweet sixteen gifts, the pearl pendant was (and still is) her favorite present.

2. Canvas Messenger Bag for School

A teenage girl has to have a cute, useful, and trendy canvas messenger bag for school, casual outings, and even short weekend travels. Pick a laptop messenger bag in a denim-like color to match her outfits and her outgoing personality.

When it comes to sweet sixteen gifts, you need to consider the practical side as well. She will probably wear the messenger bag all throughout high school and look modern, fresh, and trendy with no effort.

Schoolchildren usually wear backpacks for school and outings, but the young lady needs an upgrade regarding fashion and practicality.

Make things even more memorable for her and make sure you order the messenger bag with her monogram, a fun message printed on it, a cute hashtag that only teenagers understand, or even a more elaborate design that speaks about her personality or values.

3. A Personalized Scrapbook

 

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At sixteen, a person has the best and sweetest memories, so you can take advantage of that and put together a scrapbook for her, containing photos, tokens, souvenirs, and more. You may need a notebook or a photo album to turn into a collection of great moments.

Write a few words for each photo to remind her of that moment, add your own words for each token or memento, describe things, write lyrics, you know – heartfelt messages that she can keep forever and revisit anytime she needs a walk down the memory lane.

4. A Hammock Chair for Her Room

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This idea is more for the parents who want to celebrate their daughter’s sweet sixteen by upgrading her room and turning it from the crib of a child into the nook of a young lady who needs her privacy, her beautiful things, and her corner of peace and relaxation.

If you decide to revamp her room, do not overlook the idea of hanging a hammock chair by the ceiling to offer her a small corner of perfect paradise where she can read, take a nap, dream, and hang out with her friends.

Hammock chairs are easy to install, come in various colors and designs, and you can turn the sweet sixteen gifts quest into a family trip to the furniture store so she can pick her favorite princess throne.

5. Driving Lessons

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If the girl wants to learn how to drive and shows an interest towards the car and independent transportation, driving lessons are one of the best sweet sixteen gifts she will ever receive.

Of course, mindful and responsible parents will not give the car to an adolescent, but driving lessons are essential. You can also celebrate together, as a family, the moment she passes her test and gets her license, as this is a significant step towards maturity as well.

6. A Trip Abroad

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It is time for the young lady to see the world – in a safe manner, of course! A vacation abroad with the family, a trip with her friends chaperoned by a parent or teacher, a circuit offered by a tour operator or a city-break with older siblings, they are all incredible gifts you can give so she makes unforgettable memories.

Traveling is one of the most entertaining forms of education. Help the girl expand her knowledge, meet new people, discover new places and cultures, see things not many adolescents experience at their age, give her the edge and the leverage to become curious, exploring, and inquiring adult.

7. A Traveling Backpack

Speaking of trips and vacations, you can add a traveling backpack to the mix as well. She will have a sturdy bag to travel with during school outdoor activities, your mountain family trips or your annual family road trip, the vacation abroad you just bought, and even to school.

A camo-style backpack with padded shoulder straps, plenty of pockets, laptop compartment, and a chest strap is an excellent choice for any teenager ready to take over the world. A sturdy traveling rucksack to carry all her belongings and accompany her in her adventures is what she needs if she shows interest in seeing and discovering the world around her.

8. Spa Day with her Friends

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At sixteen, teenagers show interest towards makeup and personal care, and they do love some pampering. Mix in a bit of education with plenty of fun and offer her a spa day with her best friend (or friends).

With the help of the SPA professionals, she will learn more about how to care for her skin, what products suit her better, how to counteract the tribulations of adolescence properly, how to apply makeup, how to treat her nails, and so on.

On the other hand, having a day with your friends that includes a massage, pool fun, manicure and pedicure, a new haircut even, sauna, and lots and lots of giggles is an incredible way to spend your sweet sixteen birthday.

9. Name a Star Certificate

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Among all the sweet sixteen gifts for teenage girls, this one will certainly make a memorable impression. While not an item she can use on a daily basis, she will have a star with her name on it, and that is amazing in and out of itself.

Some important associations will provide you with star name certificates and elegant gift boxes. While not practical per se, the Star Name Certificate will show her how much she means to you, how much you value and honor her, and how much she is the bright shining star of your family.

The certificate is also a sweet keepsake she will cherish for the rest of her life and draw inspiration for gifts to offer her children when the time comes.

10. New/Upgraded Smartphone

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Teenagers these days are tech-savvy and adaptable to any device. Depending on your phone-using family rules, your daughter may already have a smartphone – case in which you may consider an upgrade to a newer make and model.

If she does not have a smartphone yet, her sixteen birthday is the perfect occasion for her to receive her first phone. If you are at it, make sure the phone comes with a reliable camera – it is the age of the selfie, after all, and you should interfere moderately with the trend, it will pass naturally eventually.

Also, get your daughter a glass screen protector for the phone – it is better to be safe than sorry – and a whimsical phone case she will love.

11. Clothing Gift Cards

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Buying clothes for a sixteen years old teenager is more difficult than anyone imagines. Therefore, instead of trying to guess her tastes and getting her things that might not suit her body or her preferences, you can offer her some well-chosen gift cards.

Going shopping with her friends is something a girl does and will do throughout adulthood. If you still want to keep some parental control on what she buys and what she wears, get her clothes shopping vouchers in stores that have a reputation of selling high-quality clothes and accessories for young women her age.

She is at the right age to get quality lingerie and underwear, some chic outfits for special occasions, cute shoes for special events, proper makeup, and so on. Of course, mom or her older sister can accompany her during this shopping adventure, but a girl needs a bit of freedom so she can take her best friend and make her independent decisions.

12. Adventure Activity

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Speaking about new experiences, sixteen is the perfect age to try new and exciting things, and we talk about activities and adventures that are safe and legal. Depending on the girl’s interests, passions, and hobbies, you can consider one or more of the following:

• Scuba diving;

• Horse riding;

• Some extreme sports such as paragliding or bungee jumping;

• A family day at the adventure or amusement park;

• A VR experience in a professional studio or a session in an escape room;

• Mountain climbing, skating, etc.

Such adventure activities represent a fun way to celebrate a birthday in general. As sweet sixteen gifts go, offering the girl something that she shows an interest in or something she can bring her friends to makes a memorable gift and celebration.

13. A Tote Bag with All the Trimmings

Girls this age wear all sorts of bags, backpacks, messenger bags for school, and tote bags for casual outings, shopping, travels, beach, and fun activities.

For this reason, a canvas two-tone tote bag with zipper (consider a monogram or a fun print/message) is a perfect gift.

Of course, you can insert in the tote bag some other fun items for a sixteen-year-old: the new smartphone or phone case we mentioned earlier, high-quality makeup, a new leather wallet, or the tickets for the trip.

Such a canvas tote bag is a great gift in itself, and it makes the perfect “wrapper” for other small gifts and items you want to give the girl as a cute surprise.

14. An e-Reader

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Books are great, and we hope she reads a lot and always keeps a book close. However, we live in a digital era, and e-readers come with many advantages and benefits. For this reason, you can offer her an e-Reader already containing some of her favorite books and author collections.

Having a reading device at hand, she can take it along for the trips, vacations, and travels. She can use it to make notes, save her favorite quotes, and more – a high-quality e-Reader with the proper ink and light will engage her in reading even more.

15. A Hobby Class

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Just like the trip abroad or the adventure activity, pick something you know she will love. By hobby classes, we mean everything from martial arts to painting.

If the girl shows talents and interests in specific fields, you can buy her beginner or advanced courses and subscriptions to workshops. It may be music, photography, arts and crafts, dance, even a sport if she has certain inclinations, cooking, design, and more.

16. Tickets to a Cultural Event

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It is time for your teenage girl to get her beautiful clothes and her best friends for a night at the theatre or opera. Of course, you can make an entire event or family trip around an attractive cultural event she wants to attend.

It can be a play, a musical, a varieties show, a concert or a festival, an art exhibit at a gallery, a unique book launch party, a geek-centered event, and more. Pick the one that best suits the tastes and personality of the birthday girl.

Facilitate her introduction to higher forms of culture, art, and education. The sooner she gets a taste for the fine arts and the refined events, the more she will want to gain superior intellect and a vaster culture and erudition.

Conclusion

We hope you enjoyed our sweet sixteen gifts ideas for girls. If you have other suggestions or tips, feel free to share them with us!

Written by Priscilla Greene — July 27, 2018

Useful Backpack Repair Tips if You Want to Do It Yourself

Our backpacks and drawstring bags are precious possessions for many of us and sometimes, no matter the high level of their quality, they wear down and tear up, or suffer accidents. Instead of throwing away your favorite rucksack, you can restore it and make it as good as new with a few well-implemented tips and minimal skills. Today we will show you a handful of backpack repair tips to help you whenever you need a reliable fix to save your favorite piece of accessory.

1. Backpack Fabric Tears or Holes

Whether you wear a backpack to go to school, work, or casual outings, sometimes you find yourself in the situation of having to deal with a fabric hole or tear. This type of accident can occur in urban and outdoor environments, but you can fix it quickly.

  1. If your urban laptop backpack’s fabric tears while you are in the city, you should buy some duct tape and cover the tear/hole temporarily (from outside and inside as well) until you get home and fix it for good.

Once you get home, you can follow the next backpack repair tips to make your rucksack or even drawstring bag look and act as good as new:

  1. If you can handle sewing, pick a larger needle and fishing wire or dental floss instead of standard thread; they will allow for stronger patching of the tear.
  2. Sew the tear twice – and create a stitch pattern that will look pleasant if it is on a visible part of the backpack.
  3. If you have to patch a hole, overlap its margins and try to sew it as tight as you can. Then, use seam grip and two round nylon patches (1 inch larger than the hole). Use seam grip and a nylon patch for the exterior of the backpack and the same seam grip and the second nylon patch on the interior of the bag; make sure the two pieces overlap perfectly over the hole.
  4. Clamp together the two nylon patches together for proper sealing of the hole/tear, but you can also sew them together with a sturdy stitch made with nylon wire.

For small tears and holes, you can use nylon patches (inside and out) and seam grips without supplemental stitching. The latter also offers a water-resistant finish besides proper tear sealing.

 2. Backpack and Drawstring Bags Shoulder Strap Problems

One common problem with the packs that we wear every day is that their shoulder straps falter. There is nothing more unpleasant and annoying than your backpack strap snapping or the drawstring backpack’s strap tearing. Let us see a few backpack repair tips related to shoulder straps’ fixing!

  1. If there is a problem with the strap of your drawstring backpack, you should replace it with a new piece of string. You can make a secure knot if your cinch pack’s line needs only some tying.
  2. If your work backpack shoulder strap snapped from the opening, cut away along the seam to get to the opening and feed the belt back into the opening. Make sure the strap stays flat in between the two side seams of the opening;
  3. Use the backstitching technique to sew three parallel lines between the side seams and make sure you tightly hold the strap in between the seams;
  4. For more safety, use seam grip to secure the strap back in its place.

To avoid straps snapping, you should limit the weight you carry in your backpack. While some drawstring backpacks come with improvements and safety applications, they can hold so much.

3. Backpack Broken Zippers and Slides

Another common failure of a bag is a zipper that somehow stops functioning, as it should. Jammed zippers and distorted zippers are frequent. Worse than traveling with a duffel bag whose zipper does not work correctly is to carry your laptop in a computer daypack backpack with a broken zipper. Luckily, you have some solutions at hand.

  1. If you have to fix a distorted zip (ones that slides but does not close anything), you need some tools and some skills (a pair of pliers or a multi-tool with pliers). First, you open the zipper as much as you can and then gently squeeze the top and bottom of the slider together with the help of the pliers. When the slider gets closer to the zip, the ensemble should start working together seamlessly.
  2. If you have to fix a jammed zipper, focus on lubrication. Almost anything oily works. If you are not at home, try using a lip balm. Sometimes it also works with soap.
  3. Stuck zippers are a bit harder to repair. You should use nose pliers, as their will do the job with more finesse than regular pliers. If a zipper tooth is bent, you should lightly apply pressure with the nose pliers to bend the toot back into its shape and line. Make sure you do not use too much force, as a broken zipper tooth is nothing you wish to happen.

We have to admit that sometimes the best way to fix a broken zipper is to replace it altogether, especially if none of the backpack repair tips above did produce satisfactory outcomes.

4. Backpack Broken Buckles

Whether you are mountaineering or working in the city, you will find it hard to replace a broken buckle, mainly because nobody carries spare backpack buckles. However, the first thing you need to do is a shop for an identical buckle and change it yourself at home – if you can. If the buckle comes with a somewhat complicated mechanism or you cannot find one to fit the webbing or the backpack as a whole, go to a repair shop.

5. Backpack / Drawstring Bag Broken Mesh Parts

Mesh is a frequently used feature of many backpacks or drawstring bags. We use the mesh for backpack pockets or for lining drawstring rucksacks, among others. If the mesh part of your polyester mesh bag/rucksack presents tears or holes, take a needle, thread, and use your sewing skills.

  1. Sew together the overlapped edges of the tear/hole, making sure that you sew sideways, as you need to pull the mesh together;
  2. You will have to create a grid – if the torn mesh is visible – by sewing up and down to try making the mesh look as good as new;
  3. If the mesh is severely torn, you should get a new mesh piece and replace the pocket, the lining, or the entire mesh panel if you need to.

Mesh is quite vulnerable to physical accidents that can tear it out quickly. To avoid such nuisance, make sure you carry your backpack with care and safety in mind.

Conclusion

We hope you find these backpack repair tips useful and actionable. If you have other tips and tricks for us, feel free to share them. We know you care about your backpacks and drawstring bags and it would be a shame to give up on them when we could use our imagination and skills to get them back into shape.

Written by Priscilla Greene — July 24, 2018

Eco friendly Purses: Are They Good for You and the Environment?

Eco friendly purses and bags are becoming more and more popular, and they will soon replace plastic bags altogether. We have talked in the past about eco tote bags, sustainable jute tote bags, and other fabrics with low impact on the environment, but today we will look at things from a different perspective. Let us see today if eco friendly purses and bags are as good for you as they are for the environment.

The Biggest Selling Points of Eco Friendly Purses and Bags

As we already know, we can reuse eco friendly purses, shopping bags, tote bags, and backpacks as many times as we want. Most common materials and fabrics we use for such sustainable bags are cotton/canvas, jute, hemp, polypropylene, calico, and others. Each comes with its fair share of advantages (and some disadvantages), so we will begin by discussing the environmental benefits of using these products more.

  • Of course, the most significant selling point is their reusability – in direct relationship with the fabrics’ resilience to wear and tear.

What few people know, however, is that eco friendly purses have a myriad of benefits besides the obvious one – help you carry groceries in a plastic-free manner. We have partially touched on such issues before, but now we want to offer a clearer picture.

  • Canvas shopping bags and cotton tote bags reduce the world’s need to use plastic and paper. If we give up on using plastic and paper shopping and groceries bags, we would cut fewer trees and reduce the activity of the plastic industry at least in some departments;
  • The cultivation of jute increases the soil fertility. Increasing the amount of jute tote bags to wear at work or to use as gift/wedding favor bags can sustain and help grow the communities cultivating jute plants.
  • Canvas eco friendly purses, bags, and totes can smoothly go together with your other clothes in the washing machine, so you can keep them clean and disinfected. If you wondered whether is cheaper to buy plastic bags instead of regularly washing cotton and canvas bags, we would tell you one thing: the amount of plastic bags in landfills and waters is so high right now it kills marine life. You are washing clothes anyway, thus throwing the shopping bags in there as well comes with an insignificant impact in comparison to using plastic bags.
  • Despite it being a class of plastic, polypropylene is a material that follows in the category of sustainable and environmentally friendly fabrics. Yes, it is plastic, but it has a low production cost and is durable, meeting thus the reusability criterion. Moreover, you can wash non-woven polypropylene purses and drawstring bags, for instance, by hand, and reuse them for how many times you like.
  • Numerous tote bags come in already-recycled materials; canvas, jute, cotton, and hemp are biodegradable and compostable fabrics. When their life is over, you can turn them into a new resource to serve the environment.
  • You can repurpose and restyle canvas/cotton bags and purses, giving them new life. In other words, such eco friendly bags can live even longer, past their standard

Eco Friendly Purses and Shopping Bags are Sustainable. Do They Also have Disadvantages?

After we summed up the main environmental advantages of using eco friendly purses, shopping bags, backpacks, and gift bags as well, it is time to learn about some issues as well. While these bags are not disadvantageous, they may pose a few problems. In the spirit of fairness and transparency, we believe we have to talk about them too so you can make an educated choice.

  • Cotton and canvas tote bags are not resilient to staining and leakages. In other words, if you use such purses and handbags for shopping, school, work, the beach, or casual activities, you need to know you have to wash them regularly, to sanitize them, remove spots and stains, and keep them bacteria-free. Luckily, we already tackled this issue, and if you want to learn more about how to wash your canvas bags safely, we have a full canvas/cotton cleaning guide ready for you. Also, keep in mind that cotton tends to shrink, so it is better to follow the washing rules to a tee to avoid such inconvenience.
  • Jute tote bags make excellent office eco friendly purses, gift bags, book bags, wedding favor bags, and shopping bags as well. However, you should remember to be careful with jute, because the fabric is not moisture-resistant and specialists do not recommend you wash it in the washing machine. In other words, if you choose a jute eco friendly purse for work, you should keep its content as safe as possible (do not carry cosmetics that can spill, containers or foods that can leak, and so on).
  • Non-woven polypropylene bags, backpacks, and purses, just like jute, are not good candidates for the washing machine. Therefore, you need to employ handwashing and a few particular measures to keep them for more extended

Final Thoughts on Sustainability and Usefulness

Eco friendly purses and bags – cotton, canvas, jute, and even polypropylene – can answer one of the many questions related to sustainability practices. From a practical point of view, a canvas shopping bag is stronger than any plastic bag you would use to carry your heavy groceries.

As fashion eco friendly purses go, as we have seen a few times before, the modern designs and the unique take on their construction make such bags perfect for school, teaching, traveling, beach vacationing, office work, and casual wear. They hold much longer, and you can even waterproof them.

If we never forget that a plastic bag needs about 400 years to decompose, it becomes evident that we need more canvas/cotton bags in our lives. Moreover, since some of the biggest fashion houses and brands started promoting stylish eco friendly purses on their catwalks and shows, it becomes clear that we can integrate such accessories in our everyday outfits without a problem.

Written by Priscilla Greene — July 20, 2018

Top 5 Teacher Tote Bags You Will Love for the Next School Year

five best teacher tote bags for the next school year

An excellent and reliable teacher bag can make a big difference in your everyday life and comfort. You need to carry plenty of things – from laptops and school materials to snacks and personal items. If the bag does not feature a specific set of traits, back and shoulder pain might be the least of your worries. Today we will look at our top five teacher tote bags to love and wear the next school season!

1. Polyester Improved Essential Tote Bag for Women

best teachers tote bags large polypropilene bag

You can find this bag in a myriad of lovely and vibrant colors to match your style and fashion choices. More than that, however, this polyester improved teacher tote bag comes with some traits that make it a valuable purchase and a reliable companion during the school year:

·         The polyester fabric is waterproof, so your belongings will be safe in fall weather;

·         Polyester is a very durable fabric, and the improved tote bag comes with extra resilience to wear, tear, and heavy lifting; in other words, you will be able to carry around all your teaching and personal items with no worries;

·         The web handles allow you to carry the bag by hand when it is full and on your shoulder when you do not carry voluminous items, making it a versatile and resistant accessory;

·         This bag is one of the most practical teacher tote bags due to its construction: it features a generous central storage area, with small interior self-fabric pockets to host a wide variety of school or personal items; moreover, the left side exterior pocket allows you to keep close your phone, keys, and other things;

·         You can benefit from wholesale offers and have different teacher tote bags for each week if you want to; the price is unbeatable.

2. Heavy Canvas Zippered Tote Bag for Women

two-tone canvas teacher tote bag

Canvas tote bags are incredibly fashionable and popular these days, and for all the right reasons: they are eco-friendly, durable, resilient to wear, tear, and heavy carrying, not to mention versatile and stylish. If you want a novel approach to the classic teacher bags, these zippered teacher tote bags in vibrant two-color designs will make your school days a lot easier and more interesting next school year. Here is what you should learn about these bags:

·         The heavy canvas tote with gusset will be an excellent ally for you during the school year, as it will help you carry heavy items, like a laptop, books, school papers, school materials, and your items;

·         As design goes, these bags feature a feminine shape and two-tone models in a great variety of whimsical colors; you can pick a wholesale offer to benefit from more colored tote bags to match your attire, tastes, moods, and fashion style each week of the school year;

·         The heavy canvas tote comes with durable self-fabric handles, allowing you to wear it by hand or on your shoulder;

·         The zipper offers protection and safe storage of all your school and personal items;

·         The bag comes with a large central zippered compartment for secure storage and carrying, but also with a handy zippered side pocket to keep your accessories, keys or phone safe and a front pocket, perfect for your wallet, credit card, ID, and more.

·         As we mentioned, you can buy such teacher tote bags in bulk, to have one for every occasion or situation; moreover, these bags are so versatile you can use some for shopping or for the beach holidays that you will have this summer.

For those teachers wanting even more space, you can also select the jumbo-sized version canvas tote bag with interior zippered pocket and exterior pocket.

3. Large Digi Camo Poly Tote Bag with Zipper – Unisex

camo polypropilene teacher tote bag

This accessory is more than just a tote bag – you can look at it as a cool messenger bag for young female and male teachers who want a fresh take on classic teacher tote bags and messenger bags as well. The digital camo design works wonders for unconventional educators who wish to mix utility with a more urban, laidback personal style.

·         The digital camo poly tote bag comes with a vast zippered storage area, perfect to carry around laptops, books, documents, camera, snacks, and personal items;

·         Polyester is water resistant, so you do not have to worry about those rainy school days you will have to face throughout the fall; this particular bag features polyester with heavy vinyl backing for more resilience;

·         The long, durable handles allow you to carry some heavyweights by hand or on your shoulder;

·         The exterior pocket offers you quick access to your keys, wallet, phone, ID, and more.

·         Men and women alike can carry this bag for school days, shopping, travel, and hobbies – the bag is versatile enough to meet and exceed all your needs and expectations.

4. Zippered Non-Woven Polypropylene Purse-Style Tote Bag for Women

zipper purse teacher tote bag

Some school days are more relaxed than others – you only have to meet the parents or attend the school meetings. In other words, some days do not require you to do heavy lifting and carrying. For this reason, you will enjoy these purse-style teacher tote bags in two-tone canvas and classic purse design.

·         This purse is a medium-sized tote bag (but still spacious to meet your everyday teaching needs), made of 100 gm non-woven polypropylene; it features an exciting variety of color combinations and contrasts;

·         Depending on your needs, you can carry plenty of items for meetings or regular school days – or wear it as a fun and light purse for less busy school days;

·         The large interior section features a zipper for perfect storage and protection of your items;

·         The design follows the lines of an office purse with long handles so that you can wear it on your shoulder;

·         The fabric is resilient to wear and tear, making it a smart choice if you use the bag for school, shopping, casual outings, hobbies, projects, and more.

5. Fashion Juco Office and School Tote Bag for Women

jute canvas tote bag for teachers

Being a teacher does not mean always carrying jumbo bags and carrying heavy loads. Sometimes all you need is a large, stylish, elegant, and feminine bag to attend activities and meetings. Fortunately, this large fashion Juco teacher tote bag brings the best of all worlds:

·         You can enjoy a heavy duty Juco (jute & cotton mix) two-colored burlap bag perfectly blending the eco-friendly and durable jute with the smooth cotton, offering more than a bag, but an experience;

·         The purse will meet and exceed all your carrying expectations, as it is durable, resilient to wear and tear, and able to satisfy the most sophisticated of tastes regarding elegance and demure practicality;

·         The inner cotton lining offers even more durability and safety;

·         Its high level of strength, security, and usefulness comes from the matching thick rope handles and the two matching woven lightweight straps you can tie to close the top of the bag;

·         The design and choice of jute nuances allow you to wear the bag in formal contexts, matching it to your pastel and fall-inspired attires; it works terrific with the forever-fashionable nude shoes and makes an elegant addition to any casual outfit you want to style up;

·         This teacher tote bag takes a sophisticated environmental approach to classic office briefcases and the regular business and work bags.

Before we depart, remember that all canvas, cotton, and jute teacher tote bags allow personalization: you can screen print your favorite quote about teachers on them, your name/monogram, and more. You can also request embroidery or style the purses up with some of your DIY creations.

If you enjoyed our selection of the best teacher tote bags to wear during the next school year, tell us which one you prefer the most! Which of these cotton/canvas/poly/jute teacher tote bags would you pick for the next school year?

Written by Priscilla Greene — July 16, 2018

How Does Screen Printing Work?

how does screen printing work

Screen printing is both an art and a science we see all around us. Screen printing is a technique we use to transfer beautiful, bold, vividly colored prints and designs onto a wide variety of fabrics. The beauty and importance of this technique are that the artwork becomes a permanent addition to the item.

Screen printing is not only for T-shirts, although they are the most evident pieces of fashion and apparel you see featuring screen printing. Today, we have gorgeous prints on a wide variety of items, such as cotton tote bags, clothes, caps, pajamas, and any textile you can think of. The advantage of screen prints is that it uses colorfast inks. It means that the colors do not fade and that they stretch together with the material, seeing less wear and tear damage.

Lately, screen printed items became extremely popular when it comes to corporate gifts. For instance, screen-printed drawstring backpacks are all the rage right now regarding workshop/conference participants gifts. Also, you will see the technique on swag, trinkets, and high-end art as well.

Have you ever thought about the process of screen printing? Today, we will offer you a quick guide on the process and reveal some of its mysteries to you!

  1. Artwork Creation

People versed in the visual arts usually use their creations to print on their clothes and shopping bags. If you do not create your artwork, you can look for images and choose some designs that best suit your needs. You have to remember that the print shop needs good image resolution and vector images that they can scale to the correct size and resolution.

If you want to prepare a gift for someone, you can have a conversation with the print shop and let them choose the best artwork, message, or patterns you want to print.

What you have to know is that the screen printing process allows you to use one color – if you want to keep things simple – or an entire rainbow. There are few limits on colors or fabrics, so you can easily print duffle bags, rucksacks, and more.

Nevertheless, some cotton burns faster than other fabric. In fact, you should know that the easiest products to print are cotton items, followed by jute ones, with non-woven bags and items taking the third place.

  1. The Graphic Designer Steps in

screen printing graphic designer

The screen printing studio received your vector image or helped you select the message/print you want them to work. From this moment on, the graphic designer takes over the matters. Here are some of the most important steps you should know:

  •         You will receive a mockup from the designer. It is a visual demo or proof, showing you how the results will look. You can approve the mockup or ask for future changes regarding sizing, placement of the print on the item, artwork inks, an item’s color. For instance, if you want to print a colorful design on a natural canvas tote bag, the designer will show how the product looks. In case you want high contrasts (yellow print on a black rucksack), you need to pay attention to color saturation, contrast, and so on.
  •         Once you agree on the mockup, the graphic designer will tell you about pricing and execution deadline. All you have to do is wait.
  1. Separation of Colors, Film Printing and Screen Burning

The process becomes easier if you print only one color, but if the artwork contains many colors and shades, they need to make a screen for each of them. Here is how things work:

  •         Back at the printing studio, the team creates a “screen” for each of the colors in your design;
  •         They coat all the color screens in an emulsion (a photosensitive liquid mixture) and leave the screens to dry; the emulsion hardens when we expose it to light;
  •         On their computers, they separate your vector image into its colors – this is what they call color separation – and turn each color into its black image;
  •         They print these images using inkjet technology on kodatrace – this is a clear acetate film;
  •         The kodatrace featuring the entire design goes on an exposure unit – you can think of it regarding an oversized light box;
  •         Do you remember the coated screen above? Now the printing studio places the coated screen over the design and exposes it to light; the image on the clear acetate film goes onto the screen through a press vacuum the air technique.

If you do not understand where the “screen burning” stage comes into play, we will clear things as well: the unhardened emulsion is burned into the screen. Then they use a power washer to remove leftovers and leave the shape of each color in the design separated in its place. Think about stencils that are more complex.

  1. Ink Mixing

screen printing technique ink mixing

Ink preparation and mixing is more difficult than you might imagine. Most professional print shops work with Pantone Matching System to get those exact shades and nuances you want for your T-shirt or tote bag. Mixing inks are difficult and need patience.

Ink bottles are very expensive, and mistakes can delay (and sometimes ruin) the project. Besides the basic color, print studios use ink masters to get all the colors you can imagine. Keep in mind that metallic shades cost more than traditional ones.

As a nice fact to know, sometimes it takes up to three hours to install the colors in the printing press and many more hours to mix them to the desired shade.

  1. The Great Rinse

Upon checking for the emulsion to have dried on the screen, the printing team starts to rinse the excess emulsion. The power rinse leaves behind the clear screen – mesh – that displays the print of the artwork. The specialists carefully rinse with water the emulsion from the screens. The team lets the mesh dry and uses refined and skilled manual touch-ups with even more emulsion in case the mesh needs more liquid. If the touch-ups are significant, then they leave the mesh to dry once again, so the additional layers of emulsion harden as well.

    6. Press, press, and more press

      how does screen printing technique work

      It is probably the most exciting stage of the screen printing process. If you ever get the chance to witness the entire technique, you should pay attention to this moment, as this is when the magic happens: the actual transfer of colors and images onto your T-shirt, backpack, or cap. This is how it works:

      •         A press operator aligns the screens and uses a laser alignment tool to load your T-shirt or tote bag. If you print in bulk, the alignment tool ensures that all items receive the same print in the same spot every time.
      •         Another specialist loads the image on the press – lining all screens, so they form the final image.
      •         If you ever heard of squeegees, this is where they step in: the rubber squeegees help the operators pull the ink through the stencils onto the fabric;
      •         The shirt, bag, or cap goes through all of the screens for the final image to come up; to preserve the quality of color and print in between two screens, each layer of color goes through a flash heat process. It ensures that the next color can go on top of the image without wet ink coming off onto the back of the other screens.
      1. Curation and Finishing Touches

      Now you have a printed shirt – although you do not know this yet. After the item leaves the press, it goes to a conveyor belt oven. Here, high temperatures chemically activate the inks to forever bond with the textile fibers of the item.

      Professional print shops have somebody called a “finisher” that inspects the products, makes sure they are perfect and in full compliance with the client’s requests.

      Conclusion

      Since each design, each ink, color, fabric, and project is unique the screen printing process requires a team of dedicated and disciplined specialists. Such teams beautifully mix the eyes of artists with the skills of engineers, so you get an amazingly printed product to enjoy for years!

       

      Written by Priscilla Greene — June 29, 2018

      Gifts for Women who have everything - 11 Ideas

      tote bags gifts for women who have everything

      Many women love to receive gifts that come from the heart and from a deep understanding of their wishes, their personalities, and their passions. It is difficult to buy presents for women who have everything or do not seem to need or want anything in particular. How many scarves and jewelry can you buy for a woman and still take her by surprise?

      If you have a dear woman in your life – a partner, a friend, a family member etc. – you need to be thoughtful in your search. The gesture usually values more than the gift itself and it is seldom about monetary value. If you are in the search for the perfect gift for women who already have everything, you have come to the right place, because we have 11 ideas for you!

      1. A Spa Pampering Day

      woman enjoying spa day

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      One of the greatest gifts a woman can receive is a voucher or a ticket to a full spa and self-care program in a specialized health club. With their busy lives, work responsibilities, everyday stress, and crowded schedules, women may not have the time or the mood to take a day off for everything a spa implies.

      Therefore, you can buy them such a glorious day, where everything is about her: Jacuzzi and massage, a facial, manicure and pedicure, sauna, hairstyling, body treatments, and more. You can easily find such specialized clubs or centers, hotels offering such services, and even quiet resorts where she can spend a weekend or a day of pleasures and spoils.

      2. A Unique Photo Session

      unique photo session

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      If you want to make her feel like a celebrity or a member of a royal family, book her a photo session and pay for a series of pictures for a portrait. You can book the session for two, if you want your couple to make the essence of the photo shoot. Have fun, pose, laugh, and share the interesting and unique experience not many people benefit from.

      If you do not want to be part of the picture and let her have the spotlight, make sure she just shows up for the appointment. You should also make sure the photo studio is nothing but professional and the photographers will comply with her wishes and tastes. Other than that, offer her a unique moment in life – the looks and the feel of a superstar on the red carpet!

      3. A Personalized Tote Bag

      international women's day bag

      It is not a diamond necklace, but it may value even more to her. A nice canvas tote bag can carry any print, message, or hashtag you know she will love. Monogrammed/personalized tote bags make an excellent gift for women who have everything – there is likely she does not have that make and model, nor the graphics, typeface, message, drawing, hand painted decorations, or custom-made design.

      Canvas, cotton, or burlap tote bags work amazing for women with a powerful eco conscience, the trendy ones, the free-spirited ones, and the ones young, hip, and bohemian at heart. Moreover, modern personalized tote bags are all the rage right now in terms of fashion and accessories, so you will help her stay trendy and turn heads everywhere she goes.

      She can dress up the tote bag for a day at the office or take it down a few notches for a laid back casual day with friends. Versatile, natural, and gorgeous, the tote bag will reflect a woman’s personality perhaps better than jewelry does.

      4. Exclusive Event Tickets

      dancers

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      If your friend, partner, or family member has some specific tastes in music, theatre, art, literature, and entertainment, you should take your time and find the perfect tickets to the perfect event. You may get some tickets to the concert of her favorite band, entry tickets to a famous theatre play, etc. If she is into creativity, free expression, and all forms of art, you are in luck.

      Besides movie premiers, you can surely find unique and exclusive, out-of-the-box events she would love to go in your city:

      •         a meeting with a writer,
      •         a fun night at the museum,
      •         a geek convention,
      •         opera or ballet night,
      •         dance performances,
      •         contemporary artistic performances,
      •         a tango club,
      •         the comedy club,
      •         a show with magic.

      You have dozens of options.

      As long as the event meets her hobbies, passions, and interests, you will offer her more than just a gift: you will offer her the experience of a lifetime.

      5. A Fun Adventure

      escape room detail

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      A city-break for two or a romantic getaway for a couple of days does not hurt, but traveling involves some planning and does not quite fall in the surprise-gift category. However, a fun adventure does. By this, we mean:

      •         a day at the amusement park,
      •         the aqua park,
      •         the adventure park,
      •         escape room game,
      •         paintball,
      •         a day spent in the countryside in a wine-tasting circuit,
      •         a day spent horseback riding etc.

      Adventures, in comparison to traveling, are shorter and you can plan them for a day during the weekend. You can consider some extreme sports, if she ever told you she would like to parachute jump or try some scuba diving.

      The idea is this: she may have everything, but she may have not done everything yet. Get a sense of what she means and feels about adventures, check out her bucket list, and make sure she gets to do something fun, be it face painting, riding a roller coaster, or getting a taste of zorbing.

      All you have to do is buy tickets, make reservations, and insist she takes a day off to have some fun. You can have the whole gang get involved, as nothing feels better than living the adventure of a lifetime together with your best friends.

      6. A Safety Jewelry Gadget

      safety jewelry

      Pinterest

      Women cannot be too careful in this day and age, and safety gadgets and apps are very popular. The science of safety and the beauty of jewelry blend in a wide variety of smart accessories meant to keep women safer. The independent and mobile type of women will appreciate a safety measure more, especially if it comes in the shape of exquisite jewelry.

      It is encouraging how many companies and startups pioneered and enhanced the idea of smart safety accessories. A woman can wear an inconspicuous beautiful ring that emits an ear-breaking alarm sound in case of danger. She can use plenty of bracelets and necklaces that look amazing and that can discreetly call 911, friends, family or an emergency network in case she finds herself in a dangerous situation.

      Panic button apps are still useful, but smart safety jewelry is the next best thing in terms of integration with national services and discrete aids for getting out of a distressful situation. You can pick among many styles and types of safety jewelry gadgets. They come in exquisite designs and many of them work impeccably in terms of efficiency.

      7. A Sleep Gadget

      sleep gadgets

      Pinterest

      Sometimes, a woman has everything except some good night sleep and rest. Since we are still in the realm of gadgets, you should know that science and technology evolved enough to offer us better sleep and excellent sleep tracking. We are not talking about silk eye covers or silicone ear plugs.

      We are talking about slick gadgets that track her sleep patterns, heart rate, breathing, and movement. The options are generous: pulsating-light gadgets that function as sleep inducers and alarms meant to offer people restful sleep, sleep tracking bracelets, and more.

      In case your friend, partner, or family member has some troubles sleeping, you should research such gadgets. Most come with a dedicated phone app showing sleep parameters and patterns and suggesting changes. Some come with their own sleep-inducing lights and sounds, while others are able to measure brain waves. Depending on your budget and her sleeping needs, you can offer her a device that will certainly contribute to her increased quality of life.

      8. Classes, Workshops, Courses

      learning to draw an elephant

      Pinterest

      If the woman you want to get a gift for is the type of person who loves to learn new things or develop her hobbies and passions, your job is to find classes and workshops addressing her interests. Opt for things like:

      •         exotic Italian cooking classes;
      •         the Japanese tea ceremony,
      •         origami,
      •         pottery,
      •         graphic design,
      •         guitar,
      •         painting, etc.

      Depending on her interests and talents, you can find such classes and workshops for her and pay for them. It will bring her more joy then some jewelry or clothing. She will appreciate your dedication for her evolution and development as a person or professional. If the classes are on the casual side of life, you can book them for the both of you.

      After all, don’t you want to have some fun at a creative writing class, perfume design, astronomy, or art workshop?

      9. Personalized Painting / Caricature

      caricature drawing

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      A woman who has everything might want to have some fun. You can take one of her photos to a street artist to create her a personalized sketch or caricature. It is a fun gift meant to make anybody have some good laughs. You can also buy a nice frame so she can display the fun side of herself in her favorite place of the house.

      Art-loving and fun-loving women will appreciate such a gesture. While not coming with significant expenses, it is certainly out of the box and quite interesting, so you might as well try it. You can find street artists in the local parks or at fairs or you can find an artist online. There are many young creative people looking for opportunities to show off their talent, so you will sustain artists and make your friend or loved one have a unique self-portrait around.

      10. Personalized Figurine

      personalized action figure

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      Did you know that there are 3D printing studios willing and able to make personalized figurines of real people if you get them a photo of that person? Look online for such studios; grab a picture of the woman you want to surprise and turn her into a lovely figurine. Some studios will take things up a notch and transform her into a famous character from comics, movies, or video games.

      As personalization goes, you can nurture and channel her inner superstar and come up with original, fun, and creative customized gifts, such as caricature portraits or even figurines. This is going to be a gift she will definitely remember and cherish for years! After all, how many people think about turning their friend in a bobble head or a small statue?

      11. A Personalized Book Scarf

      personalized book scarf

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      Did we say a woman who already has everything already has too many scarves? Well, it is likely that she does not have a personalized book scarf. In the world of arts, crafts, and handmade boutique shops, you will find plenty of offers, one more interesting and crazy than the next.

      One of them is to have a lovely monochrome scarf printed with book quotes and phrases. In other words, you can choose her favorite quote or her favorite poetry and have them printed on the scarf by a professional studio.

      This gift is unique and unconventional. It goes beyond buying books for a friend or a loved one and it certainly goes beyond printing some music lyrics or some poem verses on a piece of paper. If she is a book lover, keeping the words of her favorite novel, poem, movie, or song close to her heart and in front of her eyes is an unparalleled gift.

      Conclusion

      Some women may have everything, but some things will never be sufficient: love, affections, trust, respect, genuine affection, laughter, and joy. If you can offer these things to her, you will win a special place in her heart and mind, forever.

      Take her by surprise and make her laugh; offer her something unique, that is just for and about her. Offer her something that appeals to her personality, sparks her interests and her passion, and challenges her mind and spirit. Offer her an experience rather than an object, and if you offer her an object, make sure it will turn into one of her most beloved memories.

      What other interesting gifts for women can you think of? Do you have other suggestions?

      Written by Priscilla Greene — June 27, 2018

      Top 5 Common Uses of Polypropylene

      common uses of poypropylene

      Polypropylene is a type of thermoplastic polymer resin. In short, it is a very useful type of plastic, with numerous commercial, industrial, and fashion applications. In order to understand better the common uses of polypropylene, we have to look at its main features and advantages first.

      The main benefits of polypropylene are also the main reason why manufacturers in a plethora of industries prefer it to other types of plastic. Let us see what these important features and benefits are:

      •         It is very resilient to wear, tear, and fatigue: this makes it perfect for items that endure high levels of physical stress;
      •         It has a very high melting point – around 20 degrees F: this comes with many uses in the food container industry and other heat resistant applications;
      •         Comes with great color fastness properties – meaning that we can easily add color to it without degrading the quality of the material itself;
      •         It does not absorb water like other plastics – meaning we use it for waterproof applications;
      •         It is resilient to sun and other elements – making it one of the best solution for outdoor applications;
      •         It is resilient to mold, rot, bacteria, and more – which means we can use it for extended periods in indoor and outdoor environments without risking damage;
      •         It supports additions, in terms of elements which offer it elasticity – these new versions of polypropylene come with a rubber-like composition, opening the door to newer and newer applications;
      •         It is chemically resistant to most oils and solvents;
      •         It is lightweight and flexible – meaning we can tailor it upon our wishes and needs;
      •       It comes with the smallest environmental impact among all plastic types; we can recycle polypropylene items and parts into many applications (cases, cans, home storage, flowerpots, pallets, crates, composite lumber etc.); it produces less solid waste by weight and less CO2 equivalents by weight than PET, PS or PVC.

      Summing up, polypropylene is a more sustainable plastic than its peers, comes with plenty of structural, chemical, and physical advantages, it costs very little to produce, and we use it every day in almost every aspect of our life. In fact, it would be hard to live without it. For this reason, we will focus next on the main five common uses of polypropylene.

      1. Flexible and Rigid Packaging

      Polypropylene comes with many packaging applications you may not even know about. In its flexible form, polypropylene tends to replace cellophane, metals and paper due to its superior properties and lower price. As film and flexible packaging, you will find polypropylene film in three main sectors:

      • Food and Confectioneries
      • Tobacco
      • Clothing

      As rigid packaging, you will find polypropylene in sectors such as caps and closures to pallets, crates, bottles, Just-in-Time (JIT) storage solutions, bottles and jars for packaging (condiments, detergent and toiletries), thin-wall containers (yogurt cups, disposable hot drinks cups etc.).

      2. The Fashion and Sports Industry

      polypropylene camo bags

      If you look back at the list of polypropylene’s advantages and features, you will easily understand why this material is the go-to choice for the sports, clothing, and fashion industries.

      •         Due to the resilience of polypropylene to wear, tear, sun, elements, mold, bacteria, and especially water, you will find the material present in the building of outdoor equipment and accessories.
      •         One of the largest applications of polypropylene in the sports and fashion sector is the production of tote bags and cynch bags. These bags are resilient, sturdy and durable, reusable, waterproof, and lightweight. Moreover, you can personalize them with graphics, logos, monograms, prints, and so on, as polypropylene works amazingly with colors that stand the test of time. Polypropylene bags, drawstring backpacks, and duffel bags are a must-have for dynamic people who want personalized comfort, utilitarianism, beauty, and affordability.
      •         Polypropylene makes a good addition to sports clothes, equipment, and undergarments – we find it in cold-weather base layers for winter sports, but also in warm-weather clothing for summer sports, as it keeps perspiration away from the skin.
      •         Do you know your summer beach slippers? You have high chances to own a pair made of polypropylene.

      Besides clothes and accessories – with the tote bags and cynch bags’ industry on top of the list – modern designers began to use polypropylene for making contemporary jewelry as well. All clothes, bags, and jewelry share the common traits of the material. They are durable, versatile, printable, resilient to fatigue and the elements, hypoallergenic, and incredibly fashionable.

      3. Medical Applications

      Besides the fact that polypropylene is a material found in any medical laboratory that uses plastic in all forms and purposes, one of the most known medical applications of this material is the synthetic, non-absorbable suture Prolene. Surgeons use it in prolapse repair operations as well. In the medical field, we also find polypropylene used for equipment, tools, containers, and more.

      4. Consumer Products

      plastic bottle caps

      This list is very long – we told you that we all use polypropylene every day and sometimes we do not even realize it. In the consumer products’ department, we find polypropylene in the following sectors:

      •         Houseware – namely carpets, mats, and rugs. The polypropylene fibers are very durable and the colorfastness of the material allows for bright and resilient carpets, which have great traffic resistance and keep their colors fresh and vibrant for many years;
      •         Furniture – polypropylene finds its way in all types of upholstery; molded polypropylene is also an important “ingredient” in indoor and outdoor furniture;
      •         Toys;
      •         Luggage – as we said, polypropylene is an amazingly versatile material. In its thin form, you find it in tote bags, duffle bags, sports bags, backpacks, and more. In its rigid state, you will find luggage that holds your belongings safely and resists heavy manipulation and all the beatings your bag can take in an airport.
      •         Appliances and household items – due to its resilience to heat, oils, solvents, mold, and bacteria, polypropylene represents the go-to choice for microwave food containers, dishwasher pods, containers, plates, and other kitchen items. We use it to make sauce bottles and jars, many types of food containers, but also parts and components of vacuum cleaners, pressure cookers, washing machines, dishwashers, and more.

      5. The Automotive Industry

      In this sector, polypropylene becomes increasingly popular. We use it for car dashboards, but for other interesting applications as well: bumpers, cladding, and exterior trim, film cushioning, film skins, covers, interior elements, and more. In some specific applications, polypropylene also managed to replace the traditional painting.

      Did you know about these common uses of polypropylene? Which are the other sectors and areas where you know we use this type of plastic? What other advantages do you know about?

      Written by Priscilla Greene — June 25, 2018

      History of the Tote Bag

      history of the tote bag

      The tote bag as an accessory mixing beauty and utilitarianism is all the rage right now. Some use it as an eco-conscious statement in their fight against plastic when they go shopping or store food in their pantries. Others wear it as a fashion accessory that meets and exceeds all expectations of comfort and aesthetics. The tote bag is now a universal symbol of feminine functionality.

      You can dress the tote bag up or use it in its raw return-to-nature shape and color. You can personalize it with everything that goes through your mind or wear it casually with your glam outfit for an edgy look. You can have one in every color possible and one in every size. Tote bags are versatile, elegantly simple, useful, and fun.

      However, how did they manage to become so popular? When was the first tote bag worn? Who invented them? Today, we will look at the history of the tote bag and see its evolution from the beginning to present days.

      The 17th Century – In the beginning, it was just a Word

      The actual history of the tote bag does not begin in the 17th century. In fact, if you look at historical archives, you will see depictions of men and women in almost all cultures wearing some earlier forms of textile pouches and satchels to carry around their belongings. Leather, cloth, other vegetal fibers were all materials people used since the dawn of time to create all sorts of useful bags.

      When it comes to tote bags, nevertheless, we can trace back the word tote – to tote, in fact – meaning to carry. Back in those days, toting meant carrying your stuff in some sort of a bag or sack. Those bags, while not likely similar to the totes we know and love today, seem to have been the precursors of our modern totes.

      Since those first iterations of the early tote bags, the world moved on, and we had to spend some good hundred years until we got what we know today to have been the first official tote bag.

      The 19th Century – The Age of Utilitarianism

      white and green tote bag

      Slowly but steadily, the word tote began moving from its verb status to a noun status. The 1940s is an iconic time stamp in the history of the tote bag, together with the great state of Maine. Officially, the tote bag was born in the forties in the shop of the emblematic outdoor brand L. L. Bean.

      The famous brand came up with the idea of an ice bag in 1944. We still have the easily recognizable, legendary, large, boxy, canvas ice bag. Back then, the L. L. Bean ice bag was exactly that: a large, sturdy, durable canvas bag to carry ice from the car to the freezer.

      It did not take people long to realize that they could use the bag for more than ice transportation. Bean’s bag was versatile and resilient to wear and tear. So what else could it carry?

      Together with the first person that answered this question successfully, the ice bag became a hit and started its ascension as a staple of utility. During the 50s, the tote bag was the bag of choice for homemakers, who used the bags for groceries and household chores.

      The Sixties – When Function met Fashion

      sixties tote bag

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      Some things take hundreds of years to turn into emblems of fashion. The tote bag needed only 20 years and little to no effort. The father of the tote bag, L. L. Bean brand, reintroduced the ice bag in a newer, more feminine shape. The new bag looked like the old ice bag – so it was easily recognizable and an instant crowd pleaser – but it featured some elements of style and fashion (the now legendary color trim).

      The 60’s design of the new Bean satchel took the old ice bag up a few notches. The most important element – and one that is still extremely popular today – is that canvas stood the test of time. People used to look at canvas as some sort of an industrial material, but canvas, just like denim, proved that from heavy lifting to fashion runways the path was short.

      The new Bean canvas bag of the sixties is still available today. The brand is still making them in their original shape, size, and color scheme, but it also adds some new elements each year – such as seasonal coloring and more. Along the way, companies like L. L. Bean and others began adding leather handles to the tote bags, leather bottoms, all sorts of colored trims, zippers, prints, and so on.

      Since L. L. Bean set the tone for the future of women’s accessories, other designers took things even further. The 60s came with turmoil, increased social and political awareness and comment, cultural changes, and plenty of fashion changes as well. In this flourishing new world, the old tote bag gained new life as well, becoming more and more visible in the streets as a purse or bag and not only as a grocery-carrying sack.

      Bonnie Cashin - The Reign Supreme

      During the sixties, American designer Bonnie Cashin created what we know today as being the Cashin Carry Tote. The bag was big, bold, and beautiful, coming with a modern flair and an easiness to its form and function that many tried (unsuccessfully) to copy.

      Cashin’s tote bag took America by the storm. The Flower Power generation imposed a new culture altogether, changed poetry, music, and fashion. Their flowery clothes and vibrant colors matched perfectly the canvas loose bags they wore. Young men and women making history turned the flowy textile shoulder bags into an icon of an entire social and cultural movement.

      The Eighties – The Advent of the IT Bag

      In the eighties, legendary New York City bookstore The Strand introduced their own version of the textile tote bag, a model that is still visible and popular in the city as we speak. Made with natural cotton duck canvas and interior lining, the Strand Tote became a must-have for everyone looking for comfort, craft, design, usefulness, and beauty.

      Wanting to keep the design fresh and surprising each year, both L. L. Bean and The Strand came up with innovation and exquisite additions. Their products inspired other manufacturers to rise up to the high standards and create a myriad of totes that match all tastes and needs. This is how we ended up with other iconic bags and purses, the Birkin coming to mind.

      The Modern Age

      jute tote bag

      Today, tote bags play many roles and meet many needs. Some designs speak to the fashionable side of the wearers, featuring zippers, Velcro, leather trims, badges, and more. Some, like the Strand totes, fulfill brands’ promotional needs. Many women wear canvas or cotton tote bags as fashion purses, while others keep them only for shopping. Together with the increased concern for the environment, tote bags also became reliable answers to the sustainability problem.

      Everywhere you go, you see tote bags in a diversity of models, shapes, sizes, and materials that nobody imagined. From cotton to fashion burlap tote bags, the world is your oyster. You can find many featuring more than one color, and you can personalize yours just the way you want. With enough imagination and the right fabric, there is no stopping you.

      What do you think about the history of the tote bag? Do you know more about this iconic purse? Can you fill in the history blanks with new information?

      Written by Priscilla Greene — June 22, 2018

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