Amber is BeautifulWritten by Sher Maten
Amber is a beautiful! A true gift from mother nature. It comes in many different colors - yellow, orange, red, white, brown, green, blue and almost black. It may be transparent or clouded. Transparent tones range from pale to dark yellow, to yellow light brown. Cloudy amber comes in a wide range of colors. Amber is fossilized resin of ancient trees that grew in amber forests. Through various physical and chemical changes resin becomes Amber. Amber is unique because it is able to preserve organic tissues in it. It is very common to find pieces of plants and insects, trapped in amber making it extremely valuable to both collectors and scientists. A beautiful and fascinating gem! Amber is found in various parts of world. The largest amber deposits are off shores of Baltic Sea. Baltic Amber is most sought after and valuable for making amber jewelry. Baltic Amber has been used for decorative items since prehistoric times. A Baltic amber amulet has even been found in Egyptian tombs . Amber was also very popular in ancient Rome during reign of Neron when: jewelry, ornaments, amulets, and even dice were made from amber. During Middle Ages, amber prayer beads were exported. From 16th century into 18th century item made from amber included jewelry, dishes, buttons, pipe mouth pieces, chess sets and a host of other fine products. The majority of Baltic amber comes from a 400-square-mile area - Samland Peninsula, now known as Kaliningrad region. The Kaliningrad amber mine supplies 99% of Baltic amber. Up until 19th century amber was retrieved manually from sea. During latter part of 19th century operations became much more sophisticated as they began dredging and mining for amber. Since then millions of pounds of Baltic amber have been mined.. A small town in Kaliningrad region has world’s largest amber mine.
Nina Ricci - Top DesignerWritten by Sher Matsen
In 1883 in Turin, Italy Maria Nielli was born. In 1895 when Maria was 12, her family moved to France. When she was 13, she apprenticed to a dressmaker. At age of 18 Maria had become head of salon and at age of 22 she was their chief designer. In 1904 she married a jeweler named Luigi Ricci. In 1905 she gave birth to their son Robert. In 1908 Nina joined house of Raffin as a designer where she stayed for 20 years.
At age 50, in 1932, Madame Ricci opened her own house with her son Robert. It was House of Ricci. Robert ran business and Madame Ricci created garments. During 1930’s business grew very quickly. Beginning as a one room operation it grew to consume 11 floors in 3 buildings.
Nina Ricci created elegant, sophisticated garments in a classic style. She was well known for her high quality garments becoming very popular with older society women. She was highly talented at getting most out of every print. Both her evening and day dresses were designed to draw attention to female figure.
In 1963 Crahay left Ricci and was replaced by Gerard Pipart, who had worked with Balmain, Fath and Jean Patou. In traditional Ricci style, he designed beautiful lace dresses with appliquéd fabrics.
At age of 87 Nina Ricci died in 1970. Pipart continued designing for house of Ricc. Robert, Nina’s son was not only an excellent business person, he was an expert perfumer. He has transformed house into a size Nina would never imagined possible.
At age 83 in 1988, Robert Ricci died. In 1998 Mariano Puig, of Catalan family purchased house of Nina Ricci in 1998. They also owns house of Paco Rabanne.