Ralph Lauren 2005 Summer CollectionWritten by Sher Matsen
The Ralph Lauren Spring 2005 Collection is simply fabulous! The collection ranges from Shimmering Luxury to Breezy Elegance to Throwaway Glamour - common element appears to be color white. Lauren said he used sophistication of old-time Hollywood and chic refinement of cafe society as starting points for his collection, which featured several halter gowns, fuzzy cashmere sweaters and some tailored jackets paired with capri-length pants or Bermuda shorts. The fabrics are flowy and romantic, colors are outstanding, and statement is sexy! Ralph Lauren states "Spring is about romantic refinement - an old-Hollywood charm that's luxurios in a modern, off hand way." The spring line has a sexy blend of softness and glamour bringing out feminine side in an elegant and sophisticated way. This is a collection most any woman can be part of. There are cuts and styles suited for all ages and body shapes.
Here's some great sites to see Ralph Lauren Spring Fashions hitting boutiques now. • NewYorkMetro • Ralph Lauren Runway Show • MSNBC News Coverage
Did anyone watch Golden Globes? Emmy Rossum wore this fabulous Ralph Lauren gown - strapless, silhoutte shape to accentuate every curve with this fabulous flowing layers of material from knees down. Certainly a gown made for a star! How about Amanda Coat with a cost of $1800.00? Amazing lines! The Bronson Vest with a cost of $898.00 teamed with Amanda Skirt with a cost of $850.00. All lookers and all certainly make a fashion statement!
The History of BakeliteWritten by Sher Matsen
Dr. Leo Baekland, a scientist, was responsible for discovery of bakelite. He was born in Belgian. In 1889 he immigrated the USA hoping for better career opportunities. In 1907 he was working as independent chemist when by accident he discovered compound of carbolic acid and formaldehyde. When he tried to reheat solidified compound he discovered it would not melt no matter how high temperature.
Shortly after he trademarked “Bakelite” as well as two other variations “catalin” and “marblette” which today are also referred to as bakelite. Bakelite was first synthetic plastic. Because of its durability and beauty its uses were simply endless, it grew in popularity very quickly and within 15 years it had taken world by storm. You could find everything from electrical plugs, to ornate jewelry made from bakelite. It was even used on dashboard face of Mercedes Benz car.
It could be produced in a wide array of colors, but most common where white, brown, green and red. Bakelite dating back to 1920s-1940’s has oxidized and developed a wonderful patina that is sometime a completely different hue than original color. For example, White is often seen as butterscotch, light blue changes to forest green, pink turns to orange.
Because of this invention, Dr Beakeland is seen as father of present plastic industry. The costume jewelry from 1920’s-1940’s bakelite era is highly sought after. So how do you determine if it is actually made of bakelite? There are a couple of fairly simple tests. Although not full proof they work pretty well. Smell – When bakelite is heated it has a very strong odor which comes from carbolic acid in composition. On some pieces you can release smell simply by rubbing them hard with your thumb and creating heat. Others will need very hot water to release odor. Still on others odor is so faint you may not detect it. Sound – When you tap two bakelite pieces together they will make a deep clunking sound, rather than higher pitched clack of acrylic or Lucite plastics. This test is most unreliable as it is difficult to interpret sound because density of items affects sound you hear. Hot Pin Test – Bakelite is a thermoset plastic so it cannot be remolded with heat. To test if a piece is bakelite get a very very hot pin from an open flame source, then touch pin to item. If it is bakelite it will not penetrate. It may give off acid smell and it may leave a purple burn mark. If pin penetrates or melts plastic then it is not bakelite. Use caution when doing this test as it can devalue bakelite piece considerable, and it may do serious damage to other types of plastic should piece turn out not to be bakelite. If you proceed with this test be sure to find a very inconspicuous spot. Also if material should be celluloid, it is very flammable and can be very dangerous. If you suspect piece may be celluloid I recommend you “do not” conduct this test. When ever you are conducting this test you should wear appropriate safety equipment such as eye goggles and gloves. Formula 409 or Scrubbing Bubbles or Simichrome – this product works very well to test whether an item is bakelite. Make sure item is clean, wet end of a Q-tip with Formula 409 then touch it to piece. If Q-tip turns yellow then piece is bakelite. If you believe a piece is bakelite but it doesn’t pass 409 test don’t count it out. Sometimes polished bakelite will not react or pass test.