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Entries in jewelry blog (903)

Gem Gossip Visits e. scott originals in Boston, MA

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Minutes outside of Boston, in a town called Somerville, e. scott originals is a jewelry shop and studio where owner and maker Emily Scott Surette and her sidekick Mayble (an adorable Boston Terrier) make dreams come true. For Emily, this space is perfect in every way possible--it fosters her love for interacting with customers and clients, the studio provides endless moments to create, and Mayble gets to greet everyone as they walk through the door! That's exactly what the dog did when I entered the shop, wonderfully sweaty from the heat wave that followed us up to Boston from Tennessee. I immediately fell in love with the layout and how Emily has decorated e. scott originals. She has incorporated some antique furnishings and decor into the jewelry displays, with some gold frames and mirrors...even an antique chandelier. 

There are a few things that make e. scott originals tick, and working with clients one-on-one, making custom pieces from a very personable interaction, is at the top of the list. Emily loves creating new heirlooms from old, passed down jewelry, diamonds and gemstones. She also uses mainly reclaimed, antique diamonds and recycled metals within all her designs, which we all can appreciate. Custom engagement rings are a big part of what she does, especially with clients who want something local, made by hand and feel like they are a part of the creation process. Emily's warm personality and welcoming demeanor is just what the jewelry-creating process needs, not to mention her skills and expertise. 

Another large part of what e. scott originals does and creates is their own line of highly wearable jewelry. Items that can easily fit with your every day look, like layer-ready necklaces, unique and fashionable earrings and fun gemstone rings. These fill the shelves and cabinet cases of the store and are ready for purchase. They are also ready for other stores, as Emily is looking to expand her wholesale market.  Her target audience is ideal for any self-purchasing woman, gift-giving ease, and the price points are great. I did a little self-purchasing myself when I was there--after trying on the long Tuck studs in 14k yellow gold, I loved the look of them and how they could be worn stacked with other earrings I already own. I had to have them!

Before I left, Emily showed me an "inner circle" box that is presented to every couple who purchases an engagement ring/wedding bands from e. scott originals. The box features local businesses that come highly recommended to help easily plan your wedding day. Anything from cake makers, to photographers, and everything in between. You can see the full list here -- I love this idea and I feel it shows what kind of business Emily is running: one full of gratitude, creativity and soul!  And in case you're wondering, she is an awesome recommender, as her restaurant suggestions were top notch! 

Check out some of my favorite pieces below that you can shop from home: 

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E Scott Originals

 

199B Highland Ave.

Somerville, MA 02143

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*Need a Boston hotel recommendation? Loews Boston was where I stayed and I highly recommend it! Thanks for the discounted stay, Loews!

Gem Gossip Visits Laura Preshong in Boston, MA

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As you may know, this was my first time ever visiting Boston. I have to confess, I didn't know much about the city or neighborhoods until I landed and drove around. Boston's South End, including Tremont Street, was a favorite area of mine right away. In the heart of this fabulous area is Laura Preshong Ethical Fine Jewelry. The shop opened in May of 2005, where Laura soon found her niche of providing ethically sourced, handmade jewelry for the Boston area before anyone really even knew you could source things like diamonds, gemstones and gold responsibly. Being at the forefront of this "movement" has proven to be quite successful for Laura's business as well as helping to provide awareness of choosing eco-conscious jewelry in Boston and elsewhere. 

Nestled amongst some really great restaurants, Laura Preshong is situated on the bustling, busy street called Tremont. As soon as you enter through the front door (beneath their iconic "Laura Preshong" sign seen in their Instagram photos) you can see the nature-inspired jewelry cases, where the jewelry is displayed. Every piece is made by hand in small batches, purposefully giving the utmost attention to every detail. I spotted several unique gemstone pieces, like stacking rings, small stud earrings, and delicate necklaces, each set with gems like Iolite, Tanzanite, Topaz, Aquamarine, Tourmaline and many more. I love the daintiness of each piece and how perfect they are for everyday wear. 

Laura Preshong specializes in ethically sourced engagement rings that are trend, in style and flatter every finger. There are so many design choices, all which you can try on right there in person--like I did above! There's a fun secret behind these engagement rings: all the center stones are actually not diamonds! The center diamonds are sourced after choosing the style you want, and it can fit your budget and diamond wishes. Laura also adds, "One of the main reasons we do this is because every one of our engagement rings is custom made, one at a time, to fit the exact diamond, sapphire, or whichever stone that you choose. We make sure each ring design is perfectly proportionate to the center stone." Every diamond is ethically sourced from either Canada or Botswana, where origin is easily tracked and can be guaranteed conflict-free. Every piece of jewelry made by Laura Preshong that features diamond melee will contain certified Canadian conflict-free melee (smaller accent stones). The metals used to create the jewelry are also certified as recycled gold, platinum or silver. So every step of the process in creating your special engagement ring or jewelry will be eco-conscious.

As you can tell, I certainly enjoyed my visit--from meeting Laura and her team, to learning about her line of jewelry. Luckily you can shop all her pieces online if you can't make it to the store in Boston, so check out some of my favorites below:

 

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Laura Preshong

 

558 Tremont Street

Boston, MA 02118

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*Need a Boston hotel recommendation? Loews Boston was where I stayed and I highly recommend it! Thanks for the discounted stay, Loews!

Gem Gossip Visits Quadrum Gallery in Boston, MA

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Quadrum Gallery resides inside a mall called The Shops at Chestnut Hill

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The most mouth-watering stack I've ever created, all rings are by Lilly Fitzgerald, shop here

Quadrum | Gem Gossip

Mesmerized by Paul Morelli's designs, love the moonstones! shop here

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Director of Quadrum Gallery, Sia Maravelias, shows me around as I'm entranced by all the gorgeous jewels

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California-based designer Julez Bryant is one of Quadrum's newest additions, shop here

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the work of Lilly Fitzgerald inside one of the cases

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Last year, Quadrum added Spinelli Kilcollin to their repertoire and it has been one of their best sellers, shop here

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I love when designers' work complements one another--here I'm wearing Moritz Glik & Sorellina

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Quadrum understands that one can never have too much Gabriella Kiss Jewelry, so they keep a heavy stock! shop here

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I fell in love with these whimsical gemstone charms handmade by Maria Beaulieu, shop here

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Wearing two gorgeous diamond necklaces by TAP by Todd Pownell, shop here

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Anthony Lent Jewelry is another new addition for Quadrum, shop here

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Jewelry by Sorellina both left and right photos, shop here

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Moonstone magic, all jewelry by Paul Morelli, including the engagement ring

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the unique earring display for the work of Maria Beaulieu

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Spinelli Kilcollin rings piled on...they go perfect with my star boots

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Lilly Fitzgerald jewelry--the necklace is made of apatite, shop here

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Jamie Joseph is always popular and her work is highly collected, shop here

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Quadrum is an ideal place to shop for your engagement ring, look at the variety of styles! Shop more here

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These watermelon tourmaline earrings by Lilly Fitzgerald were a favorite, shop here

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We've got a mix of Sorellina, Moritz Glik, and Paul Morelli

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You can stop by Quadrum Gallery any day of the week! Love that about the store...if I lived closer, I would be there all the time :)

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More Gabriella Kiss, this time on my hands! shop here

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Gabriella Kiss designs lots of unique pieces, all shown here

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Wearing Julez Bryant--check out my geometric ear stack! shop here

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Up close shot of the two Moritz Glik rings ("shaker" diamonds) and Sorellina band

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The outside of Quadrum Gallery, where you can easily spend hours gasping and coveting.

Quadrum | Gem Gossip

Another shot of the Spinelli Kilcollin rings, shop here

Quadrum | Gem Gossip

Gabriella Kiss rings lined up all in a row, ready for new homes!

Quadrum | Gem Gossip

For over 39 years Quadrum Gallery has paved its own way, formed its own niche, and outshined ordinary jewelry stores both locally and across the US. There's something to be said about a store that can march to the beat of its own drum and their success is because of this. Cynthia Kagan - the owner of Quadrum - had the passion and vision of creating this space known for its unique and exciting mix of artisans and jewelry designers. The artists represented can easily wow with a single glance. I was laughing as I was going through the photos taken from my very fun visit to Quadrum early on a Wednesday morning--every photo of myself I have my mouth open in a state of euphoria, most likely verbalizing the words WHOA or WOW, because that's all I could say. The jewelry is just as special as each designer's story is--what inspires them to create, where they are based, how they started...Quadrum is full of magic and I'm excited to share my visit with you all!

Sia Maravelias has been director of Quadrum for over 12 years, with 18 years total of working at the store, and has an enormous passion for jewelry. I also met with Amy Renneisen, assistant director who is equally addicted to jewelry as well. Playing with jewelry all day is just a tiny fraction of what these women do on a daily basis. One of their most favorite things is interacting with their dedicated clients who follow profusely on Instagram, print out their own wish lists from scrolling through the website, and are counting down days until their favorite designers host a trunk show at the store. Sia recalls, "Our Gabriella Kiss trunk shows create some large crowds in our store...it is always so much fun!" 

Quadrum is exclusively designer-centered, meaning they don't create their own in-house line of jewelry or have a repair shop on site. With the focus being on the artists, the store has become a destination. The selection is one of the most unique and distinct out there, having formed some of the longest-running relationships with certain designers. A great example of this is they've carried Barbara Heinrich for over 32 years, John Iversen, Reinstein/Ross, and Pat Flynn all over 20 years! Every year the Couture show is a tradeshow the team looks forward to and is often when they scout out a select few new additions to their artist lineup. This year they've added Anthony Lent, Sorellina, Moritz Glik and Julez Bryant.

Another aspect that I highly admire about Quadrum is something I just learned of when I visited. They do all their own photography, as well as their website and social media. All photography has been self-taught and it is honestly some of the best I've seen. Jewelry photography is no easy feat and those in the business know this quite well. I also love how both Sia and Amy have their own Instagram pages aside from the main Quadrum Gallery page. Both of their Instagrams are dripping with inspiration, whether it is how to stack or style some of the pieces from the store or new arrivals headed to the cases. You can follow Sia at @jewelry_maven and Amy at @thegemdiaries

Thanks so much for having me and I will forever be dreaming of all the incredible jewelry I saw while visiting. 

 

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The Shops at Chestnut Hills

199 Boylston St.

Chestnut Hill, MA 02467

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*Need a Boston hotel recommendation? Loews Boston was where I stayed and I highly recommend it! Thanks for the discounted stay, Loews!

Summer Getaway: Adventures in New Mexico with Vale Jewelry

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Summertime gives us all the wanderlust vibes you can ever imagine. Our Instagram is typically filled with jewels, gems and all things relating to jewelry design, so it always grabs our attention when our favorite jewelry designers and store owners post an envious getaway pic. We've seen glimpses of Paris, tropical islands, Canadian mountains, and everything in between. I'm personally obsessed with the US desert southwest--remember I honeymooned in Sedona, Arizona?--so when I saw a New Mexico landscape scroll onto my screen I had to know more. Luckily the sister duo of Vale Jewelry, Eva & Ava, were more than happy to share about their two-week trip to New Mexico--let's find out more:

We planned this trip around a visit to Walter de Maria’s groundbreaking land art, The Lightening Field, but it quickly ballooned into a 2-week major road trip around New Mexico. The fifth largest state, but one of the least populated, the vast deserts and scrubland inspired Georgia O’Keeffe body of work as well as numerous other artists. You only have to spend one day there to understand why it’s muse to many creatives, between the sunsets, endless sky, and the ingrained history of crafts. No wonder it picked up the nickname of The Land of Enchantment. Home to most of the US’s oldest Native American and indigenous tribes and pueblos, including the Zuni, Navajo and Hopi, this magical and awe-inspiring land should be on anyone’s travel list.

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Left photo: One of the oldest continuously-inhabited communities in the United States, Taos Pueblo was built in the early 13th century and located right in the Rio Grande Valley. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, it holds a very active Tiwa-speaking Native American tribe residing in multi-storied adobe houses built as two complexes made from mud, wood, grass and water. This historic village is located just 1 mile outside Taos. About 4,500 members still live in this area, but only about 150 still reside inside these structures year-round without the modern convenience of running water and electricity. While it is a private community, they do offer visitors to come see parts of the village where locals sell crafts like pottery and local eats like fried bread.

Right photo: San Geronimo has a storied past as one of the first post-Columbian Spanish Catholic churches in the US. Built by Native Americans of the Taos Pueblo people under the suppression of the Spanish missionaries and colonial powers, this one featured above is actually the third reincarnation. It was one of the many churches destroyed during the Pueblo Revolt when tensions between the native tribes and Spanish colonial presence boiled over. The current church shown above was built in the 18th century.

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Left photo: The ladder above resembles some of the staircases used in many pueblos as well as native and local adobe houses. Typically, the staircases are made of local timber such as pine, spruce and ponderosa. These ladders were precious items since the wood had to be cut down from forests located quite a distance from local desert pueblos. They were passed down from generation to generation. In traditional Pueblo culture, the people of the original land came to this land by the underworld. Hence, many pueblos build ceremonial underground chambers within these adobe houses called kivas that the chieftains use for religious song, prayer and ceremonies. The one above is one from the Acoma pueblo featuring a double ladder for going up and down with a lightening rod shape holding the two together.

Right photo: On our way back from staying overnight at The Lightening Field in Quemado, we stopped by Pie Town. Yes, you read that right, it’s a town named after one of the best desserts having taken its name from an early settler of the town in the 1920s that made the town famous with a highway pie shop. The pies above are at a local pie shop called Pie-O-Neer. The Macaroon Apple Pie and Cherry Cherry Pies are worth the stop. And yes, we ate all 4…and then took a few for the road.

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Left photo: One of our favorite stops for local barbeque, Rudy’s had the most incredible brisket and baby back ribs, this is the place to stop for New Mexican bar-b-q in Albuquerque, friendliest staff and the tastiest homemade cherry and apricot cobblers this side of the Rio Grande! If in Santa Fe and craving local barbeque, stop by a food truck called Santa Fe BBQ.

Right photo: A must when you’re in Santa Fe. The New Mexican picnic above is breakfast at a local favorite called Tia Sophia’s. They make some of the best sopapillas, the pillowy fried quick breads in the image. Order everything ‘Christmas’ which means doused in both the red and green chiles. Also, a stop at Gabriel’s just outside Santa Fe is a must too. Known for their tableside guacamole and carne adovada, neither will disappoint! The local enchiladas and tamales are things to order when in town.

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Left photo: This is the view from Sandia Peak after hopping off the tramway. The crest here reaches over 10,500 feet and the tramway’s the world’s second longest ride. The sunsets and sunrise in New Mexico are unreal, typically fiery red and orange against the bluest backdrop.

Right photo: A quick hike in Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Park is a must if you’re in central New Mexico. Formed by volcanic ash deposits that have since been weather-worn to form sand-colored cylindrical cone shapes standing side-by-side. A walk in between these canyons is awe-inspiring.

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Left photo: No trip to New Mexico is complete without a stop at White Sands National Park. The world’s largest gypsum dune runs for over 275 square miles. So big, this dune can even be seen from satellite in outer space. Despite temperatures reaching 120F during the afternoon, the gypsum sand never gets hot due to the gypsum crystal’s natural ability to reflect the sun and the fact that it does not convert light into heat. We went barefoot and even did some dune-sledding down the steep cliffs. For a cool experience, plan to camp overnight.

Right photo: Another stop along the way is Carlsbad Caverns and watching the enchanting Bat Flight where over 500,000 local Brazilian Free-Tailed bats make their nightly migration from the cave to feed. It’s a coordinated visual symphony!

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Showing off some vintage Native American silver by Navajo and Zuni tribes made between the 1900s and 1950s. We picked up these older pieces during our travel around New Mexico. Some of our favorite stops include:

 

Shopping Guide:

 

  •  Rainbow Man (Santa Fe) – amazing selection of fabrics, weavings, jewelry and objects
  •  Santa Fe Exchange (Santa Fe) – wide range of both sterling silver, objects and some turn of the century pieces
  •  Shalako Indian Store (Santa Fe) – widest vintage sterling silver shop, great for Concho belts, rings, and bangles. Nancy and Marsha are both well-informed on Native American jewelry
  •  Palms Trading (Alburquerque) – solid selection of old pawn, blankets, shoes and food stuff
  • Rose’s Pottery (Bernanillo) – housed behind Rose’s is an old theatre that the owner converted to a small private collection of early Pre-Columbian to middle of the century art and pottery. If you’re lucky, she’ll give you a tour of this collection passed down from her father. The front features a beautiful collection of Kachina dolls and pottery from all the major pueblos
  • Old Town Antiques (Alburquerque) – the owner Connie is like an encyclopedia of New Mexican crafts, beautiful selection of both jewelry and objects, she even offers Pre-Columbian artifacts. 

 

Eating Guide:

 

  • Tia Sophia’s (Santa Fe) – best brunch and breakfast place for New Mexican cuisine
  • Café Pasqual’s (Santa Fe) – modern twist on New Mexican with some delicious homemade cookies
  • Rudy’s Country Store & Bar-B-Q (Alburquerque) – fantastic ribs, brisket, daily special cobblers and desserts
  • Gabriel’s (Santa Fe) – delicious guacamole and carne adovada
  • Frontier (Alburquerque) – a mix of everything, an all-day diner styled location popular with locals, young and old
  • Jimmy’s on Jefferson (Alburquerque) – quick local favorite for breakfast, order Steve’s Breakfast Special featuring a plate of hash with green chile. 
  • Grove Cafe & Market (Alburquerque) – modern eatery with homemade granola and breakfast and brunch
  • Cocina Azul (Alburquerque) – great lunch spot for some of the best carne adovada and homemade and fresh sopapillas and posole
  • Farm & Table (Alburquerque) – fresh and modern New Mexican classics as well as farm-to-table dinners with a small working farm on the back
  • Golden Crown Panaderia (Alburquerque) – tasty fruit empanadas

 

 

Cultural Guide:

  • Georgia O’Keefe Ghost Ranch (plan advance for an overnight stay, it books up early)
  • Georgia O’Keefe Museum
  • Walter de Maria The Lightening Field (apply in February when they open up spaces, openings close within minutes)
  • Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument (get there early before it gets too hot)
  • White Sands National Park (come here right before sunset for the most magical view)
  • Carlsbad Caverns National Park (don’t miss the last elevator down at 5pm)
  • Rio Grande Gorge & Bridge (shop from the local artists selling at the foot of the bridge, view is not for the faint of heart)
  • Roswell, NW (stop at the museum and eat at Big D’s for their famous green chile burger)
  • Sandia Mountains (go there an hour before sunset)
  • Taos Pueblo
  • Acoma Pueblo

 

xoxoGemGossip

WANT MORE? You can follow Vale Jewelry ---> @valejewelry

High Jewelry Made a Big Impact at Paris Couture Week

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Haute couture is one-of-a-kind creations crafted from the finest materials by skilled artisans using century-old techniques.  Haute couture had humble beginnings.  In 1858, an English couturier, Charles Frederick Worth, established the first haute couture house in Paris championing exclusive luxury fashion for the upper-class woman and coining the term “fashion designer” in lieu of the basic dressmaker.  Today, haute couture is still synonymous with high-quality materials and workmanship.  And when haute couture meets haute joaillerie (high jewelry), the result is transformative!  The jewelry becomes an extension of the designer’s vision for his or her collection creating a complete story – one that is truly a work of art!

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GIAMBATTISTA VALLI AND ELEUTERI:

Giambattista Valli accessorized his haute couture collection, comprising of ethereal tulle gowns, draped silk chiffon dresses and embellished minis with exquisite vintage jewels from Eleuteri. The jewels focused mainly on bracelets featuring a glorious 1950s French amethyst and turquoise piece as well as a intricate jade and gold design from David Webb and several Tubogas wristwatches from Bulgari. 

PICTURE Credit FROM VOGUE.COM 

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GUO PEI AND CHOPARD:

The Chinese designer made a name for herself when she dressed singer Rihanna in yellow couture for the MET’s “China through the Looking Glass” gala and red carpet.  For her haute couture collection, she collaborated with Chopard paying homage to the golden era of haute couture and Hollywood icons of the 50s.  The results were a perfect fusion of Chinese and Western cultures, high fashion and exquisite jewels. 

The deep jewel toned hues of Pei’s dresses paired effortlessly with Chopard’s the Silk Road collection, which featured an emerald bib necklace, diamond and pearl drop earrings and an amethyst pendant necklace.  The Chopard jewels complemented the opulence and extravagance of Pei’s couture collection perfectly.

PICTURE credit  FROM ZIMBIO.COM /GETTY

This post was contributed by:

wwwdaily Laura Lee Fulham | T: @WhoWoreWhatDly | W: www.whoworewhatdaily.com