Tools You May Need for Your Next Kitchen Remodeling Project

Are you a homeowner who has recently decided that a remodeled kitchen is just what you need?  If so, there is a good chance that you may want to do that remodeling yourself.  If that is the case, there are a number of tools, likely a large number of tools, which you will need.  While there is a good chance that you may already have the majority of the tools needed for your next kitchen remodeling project, there is also a chance that you might not.  Rest assure though because the majority of the tools needed can be found right at one of your local home improvement stores.

When it comes to determining the tools that you will need, when starting your remodeling, it is important to determine which type of remodeling you will be doing. For instance, if you are installing a new set of kitchen cabinets, you will find that the tools needed may vary a little bit from the tools that would be used to replace your kitchen floor.  That is why it is advised that you determine exactly what in your kitchen you would like remodeled, as well as what types of tools will be needed.  Despite the fact that you may need different tools for different projects, there are a number of common tools; common tools that you may need no matter what kitchen remodeling project you are working one.

Perhaps, the most important tools to have is a hammer.  Hammers are used on a wide variety of different kitchen remodeling projects, particularly ones that require nails.  Hammers can also be used to help position a tile or countertop piece into a tight space.  Since hammers are used all around the house, sometimes on a daily basis, there is a good chance that you already own a hammer.  In fact, there is a good chance that you own more than one!

Aside from a hammer, it is also a good idea to have a collection of screwdrivers on hand. Although there is a good chance that you already own a couple of screwdrivers, you may want a multi-function screwdriver.  A multi-function screwdriver is one that easily allows you to change the screwdriver heads, in no time at all.  In fact, if you are really looking to save time, you may want to purchase an electric screw gun.

A putty knife is another tool that you may need to use, when remodeling your kitchen.  Putty knifes are ideal when replacing a kitchen countertops or when retiling your kitchen floor.  They are great for removing unwanted or unneeded caulk or spreading around the glue that is needed to hold your kitchen tiles down.  Putty knifes are common tools, but they are not as common as hammers or screwdrivers; therefore, you may need to purchase yourself one.

It may also be a good idea to have box cutters or handsaws on hand.  If you are replacing the flooring in your kitchen or if you are installing a new laminate kitchen countertop, there is a good chance that you need to cut materials down to size. In some cases, a box cutter could do, but in other cases, you may need a handsaw. That is why it is best to have them both on hand.

In addition to the above mentioned tools, you may need to have a wrench, a measuring tape, a glue gun, a pair of pliers, and a ladder.  Of course, it is also advised that you think along the lines of safety. In addition to the above mentioned tools, it may be a good idea to have a pair of safety goggles, a face mask, work gloves, and even a hard topped construction hat, just in case.


Maintenance of High Grade Mechanical (Automatic) Watches Word Count:

You now are the proud owner of a fine mechanical watch.  It is the watch you will pass down to your grandchild.  High grade timepieces are known for quality and durability but like all machines, they need to be maintained to perform at fullest potential.  With proper maintenance you will have a fine timepiece to wear with satisfaction knowing it is running with precision.

When my customers ask, “Why does an overhaul cost so much?” I usually show them my method of taking the watch apart and the number of parts and how meticulous I have to be in handling them.  Then they understand.  Hopefully, this article will also impart the same understanding to you, the reader.

Manufacturers recommend an overhaul be performed, on average, every 3-5 years depending on usage.  By usage, I mean how careful you are with your watch.  If you wear it to do heavy construction work, for example, it will need more frequent cleaning than one worn during office work.  Just because you can wear a watch when you shower doesn’t mean you should.  Soap scum, at a minimum, looks bad.

An overhaul requires the watch to be totally taken apart and each part cleaned ultrasonically in a special solution to remove all traces of the old oil, dirt and dust.  There are approximately 250 parts in a calendar automatic mechanical movement.  It is then rinsed twice in another solution and heat dried.

All worn movement parts and case gaskets have to be replaced to insure the watch is water resistant.  The parts always should be replaced with genuine parts from the manufacturer.  This will insure the parts fit perfectly.

The case and bracelet are polished to remove all the scratches.

Then the movement is reassembled.  Watchmaker’s tools are specialized to perform the delicate assembly.  They are made by different manufacturers because different watches require their own highly precision fitting tools.  I am always amazed by the people who would no more dissemble their computer but who will take their watch apart.  Putting it back together is always very trying for them.  Seems they have some extra parts left and no where to put them!  I have received watches in plastic bags, broken and missing parts and I am asked to “fix it.”  Proper tools with knowledge cannot be underestimated.

Four special oils are used to lubricate the moving parts and the jewels.  Different parts of the movement require different type oil. For instance, each pivot wheel and balance staff is lubricated with the precise amount of the proper grade of lubricant to maintain the minimum level of friction and wear.

The heart of your watch is the highly sensitive balance wheel complete.  The parts which make up this heart are: 1) Balance wheel, 2) Balance staff, 3) Hairspring, 4) Roller table with the jewel.

A timing machine is used to regulate the time. You attach the watch to the machine and it pulses to indicate if it is running fast or slow.  In either case, adjustments are made until the timing machine indicates a straight line.

When the watch is returned to the customer, it looks like new and performs to factory standards.  From my years of experience, presenting a totally refurbished watch to its owner is always a wonderful feeling of accomplishment.


Location! Location! Location! Best Places to Shop for Pocket Watches

For the pocket watch lovers out there who are interested in adding to your collection, many places are available to help you out. Partly due to demand, the antique and pocket watch industry has increased over the past few years.  Because of this, many have taken interest in buying, selling, and even trading pocket watches.

An antique store is the best resource in locating a pocket watch. As obvious as it may sound, this is the ultimate resource, however, there are a large number of people that overlook this option when searching for a pocket watch. If you can find an antique store that specializes in jewelry, it will make the chances of you finding that perfect pocket watch that much greater.

An alternative to an antique store is a flea market.  There are many bargains available at flea markets and if you find a great flea market, you may just find a great pocket watch for a great price. Not only could you end up saving money, but you could find the pocket watch you have been looking for.

If you did not have any luck at the antique store or flea market, another place to locate pocket watches is at a garage sale.  Garage sales are very “hit or miss”, but if you do happen to find a pocket watch, you can get it for fractions of what it may cost at an antique store. This is the cheapest way to find a great pocket watch, however, it may take longer to find what you are after.

These are just a few places you can begin your search for the perfect pocket watch.  Be sure to shop around and compare the prices between vendors.  Sometimes you could even get them to knock off a few bucks if you mention that you saw one at another shop that you were interested in.  With the resurgance of antiques and pocket watches in general, chances are that you can easily find the one you are looking for at a great price.


Luxι Wristwatches of Excellence

Luxury Watches: Horology is defined as the science of measuring time and the art of making instruments to measure time. So, makes perfect sense that people skilled in the practice or theory of horology are called horologists. Folk interested in owning the finest timepieces made are defined as our refined luxury-loving readers.

Whether the love of great watches stems from the perspective of a collector or a lover of jewelry, there are various upscale sources from which to select.

Many vaulted manufacturers of wristwatches are with histories preceding the 18th century. However, there are relatively new firms. But they too are steep with experience, as one does not ascend to being a master watchmaker overnight. There are various limited-edition wristwatches available meriting a look-see. Here is a dozen of the best we have encountered over the past year. As our list expands, we will update our findings and report those to you on a timely basis.

The Presence of Richard Mille
Richard Mille has wonderful gift solutions when the plan involves buying for two. For the couple inextricably linked, Richard Mille offers limited-edition wristwatches of extraordinary quality for both sexes that are appreciatively masculine and feminine, respectively. Let’s add a femme twist to chivalry and begin with the men’s item.

Ebel Rings the Bell
Most women don’t want to be associated in any way with a whale…unless they’re eating caviar or wearing an Ebel watch. The Beluga line represents, ironically, a graceful and uncompromising interpretation of seductive elegance.

The Reign of Blancpain Marches On
Blancpain has produced haute timepieces for men and women since 1735. Yearly the prominent Switzerland-based watch manufacturer puts up a one-off wristwatch for auction to benefit the Monaco Association of Muscular Dystrophy (Association Monegasque contre la Myopathie) during the Monaco Yacht Show. This year’s selected timepiece for the Only One auction was Le Brassus. Its suggested retail price is $135,000. The results of the auction have not yet been officially announced.

Roger Dubuis, Indeed
There is luxury and then there is luxury-luxury. Generally, when something comes our way that is viewed as an upper-echelon item, we report it to our luxury-loving readers and that’s that. Weekly we write about vehicles that cost up to and over $1 million and single-family residences costing over $100 million. So, sticker shock rarely affects anyone here. However, these wristwatches by Roger Dubuis, priced as high as $250,000, definitely piqued our attention.

Our Boy, Maurice Lacroix
You may think astrology is a bunch of nonsense or you may not leave the house until you’ve consulted with your personal astrologist. Either way, we predict that owning a Lune Retrograde watch by Maurice Lacroix is a great way to make the right impression. After all, the watch you wear is as telling as how much you leave for a tip.

The Racy Parmigiani Fleurier’s Bugatti Type 370
Parmigiani Fleurier’s Bugatti Type 370 wristwatch draws from the automotive world for its innovative craftsmanship and intricate design. At first glance, it strongly resembles an engine block strapped onto a wrist. Albeit its unique look alone is quite captivating, it is what is under its hood that is setting off the alarms of haute horologists worldwide. Until now wristwatches were built on a vertical axis. This is the first wristwatch ever to be built on a horizontal axis. Its revolutionary transversal movement is set over five separate plates.

Role of the Rolex
Acceptation that Rolex is more than an elite maker of timepieces is commonplace. Its nomenclature is oft used as a synonym to describe excellence, brilliance, first-rate, superiority, distinction, or quality. Suffice it to say that most luxury, upscale horologists would welcome comparisons. Rolex wears the diadem of the industry with panache and ornate gracefulness.

The Majestic Carl F. Bucherer
Recently, we touted Carl F. Bucherer’s single-copy Queen’s Watch as a splashy testimony to his firm’s exquisite craftsmanship and outrageously divine opulence. However, being the fair-minded purveyor of luxury living we are at Luxe, we deemed it appropriate to also bare Carl F. Bucherer’s masculine side with the Patravi collection. Because, after all, kings have needs too. And the Patravi Chronograph GMT series addresses those needs royally.

The Watch Workshop of Speake-Marin
Peter Speake-Marin, the founder of The Watch Workshop, is an extraordinary horologist who produces collectible, limited-edition Swiss-manufactured wristwatches that fit into the modern- and classical era of timepieces perfunctorily. Aside from the entire collection’s subtly classy appearance and meticulous tooling, there is a loftiness of elevated self-worth to its wearers that is as desirable as these watches are attainable. It is a limited feeling reserved only for collectors of Speake-Marin’s omnipotent jeweled masterpieces.

Elegance for All by Zenith Swiss Watch
Baby Star Open Love is the latest addition to the Star collection for the ladies. With its case reduced to 32mm, it is smaller than preceding Stars but equally eloquent displaying the new Elite 68 automatic movement. The boys get the Class collection to add to their assemblage of horologes. For the man in search of discreet luxury, its simple design coupled with unchallengeable precision makes this latest release an instant classic.

Classic Gevril
Perhaps Father Time’s real name is Jacques Gevril, the founder of the Gevril Swiss Timepiece Company. Mr. Gevril, a pioneer of Swiss horology, began his career in the mid-1700s. He is the inventor of the repetition dial and the first exporter of Swiss watches. In 1758 Mr. Gevril was commissioned to make a timepiece for the king of Spain. The king was so impressed byGevril’s craftsmanship that he appointed Jacques the watchmaker to the crown. Nearly 250 years later, the timepiece company earnestly retains its noble status under the watchful eye of owner Samuel Friedmann. Today Gevril watches remain a natural fit with society’s modern-day royalty, adorning the wrists of prominent personalities worldwide.


Keep Up with Fashion Jewelry Trends at Bargain Prices

When it comes to winter wear, there’s more to fashion than sweaters, leggings, tights, handbags, and pashminas. Although many women heavily accessorize during the spring and summer months, the argument can be made that fashion jewelry is even more important during the winter. After all, in the absence of accessories, the dark colors of the fashion season can make you look and feel drab. Add some compelling bracelets, necklace sets, and earrings, however, and you’ll begin to shine.

Fashion Jewelry Trends

Just as you add pieces to your wardrobe each season, you should also change out your fashion jewelry. When selecting your pieces, here are some trends to watch:

Bracelets: When it comes to bracelets, beading is key this season. Look for dangling bracelets with semi-precious stones, glass beads, acrylic beads, and even seashells. Stretch bracelets work for virtually every wrist, while the fashion forward are opting for multi-stranded beaded stretch bracelets. Black, red, and dark green dominate the scene, with crystals adding sparkle to more formal occasions.

Pendant Sets: Silver adds a wintry glint to the season’s pendant sets, with animal jewelry taking the lead. African elephant pendants, horse pendants, and even frog pendants can add elegance or whimsy to your fashion statement. This year, holiday ensembles are being accented with snowflake pendant and earring sets.

Brooches: The story this season is animal jewelry. Brooches have come back with a bang, and are epitomized by teddy bears, kitties, poodles, and butterflies. Other whimsical implementations, such as angels, ladybugs, and cherries, are also setting trends.

Watches: Long gone are the days when a woman had a single watch. Today, watches are viewed first as a fashion accessory first, and second as a timepiece. Cuff watches are setting the tone, but beyond that, you’re only limited by your imagination. Look for crocodile cuff watches, round or square wood cuff watches, and shell cuff watches.

Jewelry as Gifts

There’s little doubt that jewelry is always appropriate as a gift. For example, teacher gifts could include a gold teacher brooch depicting a coffee mug with pencils, a school-themed slide magnetic bracelet, or a teacher’s prayer stretch bracelet. Similarly, a set of two fleur-de-lis bracelets would make wonderful gifts for a mother and daughter.

For those on your gift list who are spiritual or religious, fashion jewelry can tastefully reflect their deeply held beliefs. A multi-strand necklace with a cross would be a perfect gift, as would a cross-shaped charm and earring set.

Finding Bargain Prices

As anyone who has shopped for fashion jewelry and other accessories knows, keeping up with trends can be expensive. That’s why savvy shoppers go online to buy fashion jewelry. Because e-tailers don’t have the same overhead expenses as brick-and-mortar retailers, they can happily pass those savings on to you.

When you shop online for jewelry, make sure to select a company that has a commitment to both setting and reflecting fashion jewelry trends. The company should also offer a distinctive collection of rings, necklaces, bracelets, and earrings, while offering value prices.

This winter, don’t settle for drab. Let your wardrobe sparkle with fabulous fashion jewelry!


Luxury Watches

If money permits, one of the most important accessories is perhaps a luxury watch. Luxury watches aren’t just functional, they are also a wonderful addition to your wardrobe.

For quite a long time, luxury watches have been recognized as a symbol of a person’s success. Brands such as Rolex, Cartier, Patek Philippe, TAG Heuer, and also others seem to demand instant respect and admiration.

Although the primary purpose of luxury watches is to tell the time, more and more of today’s styles offer wonderful, additional benefits. For example, some serve as two-way radios, small computers, or even as a display for your position on earth using GPS technology. It is amazing to think how sophisticated the capabilities are on luxury watches.

While many watches have increased their capabilities, some have opted to go above and beyond the latest technology to offer something more—time pieces that are built to last a lifetime. Of course, these premier watches are known as luxury watches.

Before you purchase a luxury watch, there are a few things you should know. Once you do, you should have no problem choosing the luxury watch that is right for you.

When it comes time for you to shop for a luxury watch, it is important to know the difference between an automatic watch that doesn’t run on batteries, and a quartz watch that does.

An automatic watch runs by the physical movement of the wearer’s wrist. It means that if it isn’t worn for a period of time, it will stop ticking. Shaking it will, however, bring it back to life.

A quartz watch uses batteries and is usually less expensive than an automatic.

Next you must compare caliber automatic watches to standard automatic watches. Automatic luxury watches function without the use of batteries, but after a while the time will be slightly off. A caliber automatic luxury watch is able to provide better precision.

For example, after a standard automatic luxury watch is worn for a month, it will typically be off by 12 minutes, while a caliber36 automatic will be off by only 2 minutes.

In addition, a standard automatic, if stored, will run for 36 days before it stops ticking, while a caliber 36 automatic will run for 50 days. Of course, the higher the watch quality, the higher the price.

Lastly, choose a watch that fits your personality. There are so many luxury watches available today, it can be very overwhelming trying to choose which will best meet your needs.

Each brands tend to specialize in certain areas of timekeeping. For example, A TAG Heuer is known for its accuracy in the sports world, especially when it comes to gold and auto-racing.

In fact, Tiger Woods, a well-known professional golfer, has helped the company to design the Link Tiger Woods Limited Edition luxury watch, his own signature. It was designed for golfers who prefer to wear a lighter watch on the golf course.

Now that you know what to look for, you can easily narrow down what type fits your needs from the various type of luxury watches available.


Increase Your Cubic Zirconia Sales with Dazzling Displays

When selling any type of jewelry including cubic zirconia, your displays make all the difference in how well your items sell. Customers are often drawn to those dazzling jewelry displays that offer shimmering lights and vibrant colors. White cubic zirconia pieces and other colors can each be displayed in such a way to attract the eyes of customers. Use the jewelry display tips below to increase cubic zirconia sales in your retail store.

Choosing Your Wholesale Cubic Zirconia Stones

Proper display starts even before you place the jewelry items in your display case. You can coordinate how you will display them when ordering your wholesale cubic zirconia stones. Choose loose cubic zirconia stones that are complementary to one another and be sure to order a variety of colors, shapes and sizes.

Many jewelry retailers make the mistake of displaying only jewelry that they like. Having a variety of cubic zirconia pieces will keep your showcases from looking bland or bare. The more colors and shapes you can display, the more you’ll be able to cater to all your customers’ needs.

Some cubic zirconia stone colors you might find include grades AAAAA, AAA, and A quality white cubic zirconia a.k.a. fake diamonds, citrine yellow, garnet, violet, champagne, aqua, lavender, peridot, pink, tanzanite, and amethyst. There are also synthetic gemstones in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes. If you’re just getting started in the jewelry business, check with an online CZ wholesale giant to find great deals on loose CZ stones and more.

Display Colors

The colors you choose to enhance your cubic zirconia jewelry displays are very important. You should use vibrant colors that blend well with the jewelry. Use soft, complementing patterns and objects such as small silk floral arrangements, pastel-colored satin cloth, and dimensional displays for light pastel colored jewelry such as CZ white fake diamonds, pink, lavender, aqua, yellow, and amethyst.

For darker colors such as emerald, champagne, garnet, padparadschah, peridot, and tanzite, use black and other dark colors around the display but still place the jewelry directly onto a light-colored background for contrast.

Types of Displays

Colors are important, but so are the displays you use. Cubic zirconia jewelry should be displayed in such a way that the customer can visualize wearing it. For instance, anklets and toe rings can be displayed on a foot replica display. Earrings and necklaces can be displayed on partial tabletop mannequins, which come in a variety of styles and colors. There are hand-in-glove displays that appear to hold up necklaces or bracelets in an elegant manner.

You can use rotating display cases for watches and jewelry sets. Also, set up display blocks of different shapes and sizes underneath a satin cloth.  Place them in three-dimensional locations to give a more visual effect.

Lighting for Cubic Zirconia Jewelry Displays

Lighting is very important for displays. It can be used to highlight certain jewelry pieces or sets that are on display. Use softer lighting for the entire store, and then have brighter lights sprinkled throughout your jewelry showcases to illuminate those pieces. The customer will perceive that you offer high-quality items if your lighting and overall decor reflects a touch of elegance throughout your store.

Don’t Forget the Store Window!

While creating displays, don’t forget to dress up those front store windows. Your windows will either attract customers or turn them away. Put your very best items up front, or items that are on special for the week. Make the display eye-catching and appealing to the jewelry seeker.

Jewelry customers are attracted by what they see. You’ll be amazed at how dazzling displays will affect your cubic zirconia sales. Use the tips above to start increasing cubic zirconia jewelry sales today!