Archive for the ‘Shopping’ Category
Several companies offer discounts to Federal employees. This is because Federal employees are deemed to be “safe”, particularly by lending agencies, as they have a steady source of income which is somewhat insulated from the turbulence in the private sector.
Working for Federal government can offer an individual job security. Along with it comes monetary benefits, such as employee discounts. A number of companies/retailers and service providers offer their products to the Federal as well as state governments at the discounted rates. This allows them to reach a nationwide customer base and increase their sales figure. These products and services range from consumer goods such as cell phones, computer, laptops to travel and holidays. A few of them are discussed below.
The discount rates offered to the employees who work for the Federal government differ with the fierceness of the competition in the market. These rates also vary from employee to employee. The position he is working at, and the department he is employed in has a bearing on the discounts received. An employee of the US Postal Department may buy a certain product or service at a more discounted price than that of an employee of the Department of Agriculture or Homeland Security.
Following are some examples of the products and services that are offered to the Federal employees at reduced rates:
- The rule states that, “Fiercer the competition in a sector, more eager the sellers are to offer their services at deducted rate. Cell phones aren’t an exception to this rule. Most service providers offer discounted rentals or call rates. Normally, the discounts are in the range of 10 – 20% of the cost. However, the competition has forced some of these companies in offering 10 – 25% deductions as well.
- Computer giants such as Microsoft, Dell Computers and Apple too, offer deductions on purchase of their products.
- There are some entities such as FedSave program which look after the welfare of government employees. Different types of businesses, after negotiating with these entities make their services and products available at lower costs than the market values.
- Government Employee Travel Opportunities (GETO) Program is a travel benefits program for the government employees. Discounts negotiated with hotels and resorts through this program saves money for these individuals.
- The car rental companies offer rebates to these individuals in their home towns as well as in other cities.
- Car manufacturers too, offer discounts (GM Military Program Discount) to members of armed services (reserve and active) and their spouses. The rebates offered are in addition to those available at the regional or local level. GM also offers rebate of $750 to members of USAA in addition to its discount program. These individuals must present printouts of their GO-codes to the dealership at the time of availing discounts which are applicable to buying or renting of 2 vehicles from GM.
- Credit cards, insurance companies, too, offer deals while selling their services.
- Federal employees can change their health plan or status for the existing one only after they get married or divorced, have baby or move out of the state. Apart from these occasions, Federal Employee Health Benefits (FEHB) Open Season that runs from the 1st week of November to the 2nd week of December annually is the only other opportunity to do so.
- Scholarships for students amounting to $400 – $1,500 are awarded to civilian Federal as well as postal workers and their family members.
- Colleges and universities too, offer courses at reduced costs to these employees and their wards.
- There is a loan repayment program which allows a Federal agency to make repayments to the loan holder on the behalf of its employee. The maximum limit is $10,000 per year and the total amount is not more than $60,000 for an employee. The process is followed as a part of recruitment drive for candidates or to retain current employees. The arrangement puts some restrictions on the beneficiary.
- There are some organizations and websites such as Sittercity and Nannypro which offers preschool and after-school childcare, babysitting and other services like housekeeping and services of nannies at a discounted prices to Federal employees.
- Apart from the services and products mentioned above, discounts on purchases of artworks (Thomas Kinkade Events LLC), auto parts such as brake pads and brake rotors (for military personnel), clothing and accessories, eye care, food, gift baskets and flowers, pet health insurances, gyms, home improvements, home security, etc., are available.
Some retailers as well as companies offer special saving programs or discount coupons which sometimes are region or zone specific or selective in terms of products covered. Most of the time, these special reductions are not advertised to the general public. A government employee must ask about these discounts at the time of subscribing to a service or buying a product. He may also search for these programs on the internet while doing research to select a product to buy. To avail these deductions in the costs an employee has to present his identity card issued by government department he is employed in.
Do you wish to season your kitchen woodwork with food grade mineral oil? In this article, you will find everything you need to know about it. So, read on..
Kitchen furniture and appliances have to withstand extreme temperature and humidity variations. Besides, these items are often subjected to awful odors, staining, etc. Obviously, bacterial growth takes place very easily on these appliances and furniture pieces. If you have wooden chopping boards, knife box in your kitchen, you need to be extra cautious about bacterial growth as it can completely ruin the wooden craft. A coat of food grade mineral oil can help you seal the wood and prevent any bacterial growth on its surface. Besides, you can also prevent it from getting stained.
What is Food Grade Mineral Oil
What is mineral oil? How do you classify food grade and technical grade mineral oil? Food grade mineral oil is a derivative of petroleum. Petroleum products are classified according to the degree and process of refining as well as compounds added or removed from it. Food grade mineral oil has to meet or exceed certain requirements set by FDA. One of the most important requirements set down by FDA is that it must be safe for direct or indirect contact with food. Direct contact with food includes coating of baking tins and trays, while indirect contact includes lubrication of plants in bakeries etc. Besides, there must not be any contamination at the processing and packaging site of the final product. The petroleum product thus processed is food grade mineral oil.
It has myriad different uses in kitchen and home. Use of mineral oil as laxative is also well-known. It slows down the absorption of water from stool inside the bowel. This renders a soft texture to stools and relieves constipation. Other commendable food grade mineral oil uses in kitchen include sealing of wood and making it stain resistant. Wipe the wooden surface with a wash cloth soaked in mineral oil to seal the pores. Wipe off excess oil with a dry wash cloth. Allow the mineral oil to cure on the wooden item. This process makes your woodwork stain and heat resistant, as well as protects it from fungal and bacterial growth.
Where to Buy Food Grade Mineral Oil
It is available at almost any drug store. However, the one available at these stores is mostly meant for laxative purpose. Although, there is no harm in using mineral oil laxative for seasoning your wooden chopping boards, you can find the specialized variety at woodcraft stores. Besides, any store that sells wooden knife blocks, butcher blocks also stocks food grade mineral oil for seasoning purpose. Online retail stores are yet another place where you can find it.
Food Grade Mineral Oil Substitutes
If you are wary of using any petroleum products in your kitchen or you are concerned about dangers of mineral oil, you can look for mineral oil alternatives. Some edible oils can substitute for mineral oil that is food grade, when it comes to seasoning of woodwork. Tung oil and walnut oil are good vegetable oil substitutes for food grade mineral oil. Tung oil is more viscous than walnut oil, hence application may be a bit difficult. Walnut oil, on the other hand is very easy to apply and provides best results. However, avoid buying walnut oil from supermarkets as this particular variety tends to get rancid. The one found in woodcraft stores is often of better quality and serves the purpose well.
Food grade mineral oil is entirely safe for use in your kitchen. So, as soon as you buy a new wooden item in your kitchen, season it with this mineral oil to extend its life. If not, you have the option of using substitutes for mineral oil.
Are you wondering what can you buy with food stamps? Then, read the article for complete details…
Before we get into any details on what can you buy with food stamps, let’s understand the concept first. Food stamps are now known as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). What this program does is, give those families an option to purchase food who cannot afford it otherwise. The program is not only limited to only families but also single people as well. In the following article, we will be discussing how this program works, who is eligible for this program, and what foods can you purchase once your application is accepted.
Food Stamps Program
Often times, there are families and single people who, after constant struggling, can’t make ends meet. It becomes difficult for them to pay their bills and purchase food. And when someone is in dire need, food stamps or SNAP can be used. Similar to a bank account, you will receive an account which keeps all your calculations of the program. You will get an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, which looks like a debit card. With this card, you can make the necessary purchases. Every month, the specific benefits are transferred into your account and you can easily avail them at various grocery and convenience stores. Many times, people wonder if they are eligible to apply for this program and sometimes, miss out of the opportunity. To learn more about the specific items and how you can apply for the program, keep reading.
Apply for Food Stamps
As we discussed earlier that food stamps can be used by families with children or single persons, we will talk a little bit more about what exactly the criteria are. When you apply for the program, you will be asked a series of questions pertaining to your overall income (from your employer and any other outside income), information about child care expenses paid to you by someone, the total household expenses assumed by you, etc. If you wish to know how to apply for food stamps, click on the link in order to read the article for complete details.
Things to Purchase
Even if you are not completely aware of what exactly the food stamps program does, just by guessing the name you can have a general understanding. But, in order to be completely sure what it is that you can purchase with these stamps, take a look at the lists mentioned below.
|Can Purchase||Can’t Purchase|
|Peanut Butter||Pet Foods|
|Baby Formulas||Toilet Paper|
|Dairy Products||Hot Foods|
|Canned Meats||Beer & Wine|
|Sugar & Condiments||Tobacco Products|
|Soda & Mixed Drinks||Hygiene Products|
|Uncooked Meats & Fish||Household Products|
|Canned, Fresh & Frozen Fruits||Cleaning Products|
|Seeds & Plants (to grow food)||Eat-in Grocery Foods|
|Canned, Fresh & Frozen Vegetables||Vitamins & Supplements|
While purchasing the items with your food stamps, remember this – anything and everything that is edible food, no matter if it comes in fresh, frozen, or canned style, it can certainly be purchased by these stamps. Every non-edible items are not included.
Now, after reading this article, you must have the basic understanding on which items can be bought and which are off-limits. Once your application has been accepted, you will receive your EBT card and then you can get all the necessary and permitted food and beverage items. Just make sure that you are completely aware of the “Can Purchase” list and the “Can’t Purchase” list before you head out shopping.
Some tips for safe online shopping which will help you to understand how you can make the most of this concept without compromising on your security. Read on….
As the trend of buying goods and availing services online continues to soar, the frauds and security concerns associated with the same are also on a rise. Technological advancement has given a major boost to e-commerce and other such concepts, which revolve around the computers, and more importantly, the Internet. The concept of online shopping is no more alien to anybody in the world. Millions of people log onto these shopping websites in order to make shopping a convenient affair. What they fail to understand, however, is the fact that they are compromising on their security by not abiding by the rules of safe online shopping. With so many issues of online frauds coming to light every day, it is surprising to see that people continue their online shopping spree, without paying any heed to their own security.
Tips for Safe Online Shopping
Online shopping fraud is a broad concept, which includes a range of activities right from hidden charges and phishing to credit card scams and identity theft. Given below are some of the most simple precautions that you can take when you opt for shopping online.
Carry out your transactions from a secured PC: You need to make sure that the PC you are using for online shopping and related transactions is up-to-date with security measures, such as anti-virus software and firewall. Being one of the most important tip as far as safe online shopping is concerned, this will help you in keeping those malicious programs out of your transactions.
Be well-versed with the website you use: You need to make sure that the website from which you are buying goods or availing services is authentic. Never go through search engine results which feature random sites which you have never heard of before. You need to understand that – more popular the website, lesser are the chances of you being caught in any sort of web of deceit.
Never give away your personal information: You will have to provide some information while shopping online, however you need to make sure that this is just the general information, like your name or contact number. Never give out confidential information, like your social security number, on online shopping websites. More importantly, never fill in any sort of information in pop-up windows, even if you trust the website. Maintaining privacy while shopping online is a must, as giving away confidential information can make you vulnerable to issues like identity thefts.
Paying by credit card is wiser: Always resort to credit card for payment options. Though many of us prefer to use debit cards for online shopping, they don’t have all the security features that credit cards do. More importantly, if your debit card number gets stolen, it will give hackers total access to your account, and result in even more difficult situations for you.
Before you order the product: You need to make sure that the transactions are secured, and the shipping policy of the company is in the place. Cross checking the actual price of the product and the shipping charges with other companies, can help you in getting the best deal. Make sure that there are no hidden costs in the shipping charges. You will have to take into consideration the actual price of the item, as well as shipping charges, handling fees and sales tax.
After you order the product: Never reply to confirmation mails which ask for your personal details. Make sure that you take the print outs of all the online transaction records, which you can eventually use as proof. Other than all your transactions with the company, it is wise to save the product description as well. Lastly, you will have to monitor the time required for shipping as well. It is very important to know the terms before you buy the product.
These were some of the general tips which you need to followed in order to ensure that your shopping escapade doesn’t go awry. If, at all, you end up having a bad experience, you can report the company to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) or the consumer protection agency in your area of jurisdiction. There are a number of phishing websites out there in the guise of shopping websites. In such circumstances, it would take efforts from all of us to come together and make online shopping safe and secure.
Need a piece of cheesecloth for making cheese, but can’t find one at your local supermarket? Read this article to know where to buy cheesecloth from and also its myriad substitutes.
Cheesecloth is a soft cotton fabric that is woven loosely. It is mainly used for making cheese, hence the name. Besides, cheesecloth is also used in myriad other recipes that require straining of milk products and holding the residue together. The loosely woven fabric drains out the liquid and holds the solid together. The large holes of the fabric allow the dairy product to breathe. Cheesecloth is not dyed unlike other fabrics, which makes it a neutral option for culinary uses.
Where Can You Buy Cheesecloth
Before you are all set to buy cheesecloth, it would certainly make sense to understand what are the various types of cheesecloth available out there.
Cheesecloth Fabric Types
As mentioned above cheesecloth fabric is made from undyed cotton. The threads are loosely woven so that the fabric appears porous. Its porosity is very useful in straining of foods. There are several grades and types of cheesecloth. The grade of the cheesecloth is mainly based upon the number of threads per inch. There are about five grades of cheesecloth, namely, #10, #40, #50, #60 and #90.
Grade #10: Grade #10 is characterized by 20 vertical and 12 horizontal threads per inch.
Grade #40: In grade #40, there are 24 vertical and 20 horizontal threads per inch.
Grade #50: In grade #50, there are 28 vertical and 24 horizontal threads per inch.
Grade #60: Grade #60 has 32 vertical and 28 horizontal threads every inch.
Grade #90: Grade #90 consists of 44 vertical and 36 horizontal threads per inch.
Thus, grade #10 offers maximum porosity whereas grade #90 is the thickest of all. The grade selection is mostly done on the basis of purpose of cheesecloth. Cheesecloth of higher grades is stronger and lasts longer. Cheesecloth fabric is also classified as lightweight cheesecloth and heavy weight cheesecloth.
Where to Buy Cheesecloth
Cheesecloth is mostly used for culinary purposes. Hence, it can be easily found in supermarkets or grocery stores. Look for cooking gadgets and kitchen supplies in the cooking section. Cheesecloth is mostly stocked around this stuff. You can also buy cheesecloth at fabric stores or stores that stock sewing stuff. Some bed linen stores may also stock cheesecloth of certain grades. You may not find the cheesecloth of required grade at a supermarket or grocery store. The cheesecloth that supermarkets sell is mostly soft and loosely woven. Thus, you might have to fold it in layers for achieving the desired thickness or size of holes. The maximum variety of cheesecloth can be found on the Internet, as you can order the cheesecloth of any grade as per your requirements. Go through the catalogs on various shopping websites and order the cheesecloth as per your requirements. One can also find cheesecloth at upmarket cuisine boutiques, albeit at a very high price.
Many a time your recipe demands use of cheesecloth, to which you may not have an easy access, in such cases cheesecloth substitutes can come in handy. There are many materials that work just as fine as cheesecloth for a myriad recipes. Muslin cloth is an ideal substitute for cheesecloth, due to their similar texture. You may use medical gauze for the same purpose. However, you may have to fold it in several layers for achieving a desired effect, as medical gauze is very loosely woven with large hole sizes. An old sock and a worn out linen also work great as cheesecloth alternatives, however make sure both are sufficiently clean to be used for cooking purpose. Similarly, a coffee filter (paper) can also be used as cheesecloth substitute as it offers same porosity. Any of these materials can be used depending upon the thickness of cloth demanded by your recipe.
Buying cheesecloth should not be a problem, now that you know what are the places to look for. In case, you fail to obtain cheesecloth, you can always rely on cheesecloth substitutes given in this article.
After you are done reading this article, you will be able to focus on several tips for shopping at a mall. As malls become the reality of our current world changing lifestyles, it is worth knowing some vital tips to make your shopping experience delightful!
A bustling metropolis is full of luxury shopping malls and in the US, it has become the top-notch destination for the weekly and monthly shopping of urban families. The mall culture, as economists call it, has opened avenues for tremendous shopping and business activities. Shopping in malls was earlier considered expensive but with a large number of malls sprawling in the recent years, competitive pricing and discounts have made it affordable for most of us. Here we will inform you about some tips for shopping at a mall. Have a look.
How to Shop at a Mall
If you are a newbie in the world of shopping in malls, you must know the fundamentals of visiting a mall for shopping. Shopping is one of the favorite pass-times of many people. Before you step into expensive places like shopping malls, ensure you are aware of the critical difference between needs and wants. If you have enough money to splurge, then you can enjoy shopping but if you have a tight budget, be careful with your spending while entering into one, as it can be expensive for your pocket.
Avoid Weekends: Shopping on the weekends can turn out to be very exhausting due to a huge crowd and congested environment. Prefer week days to shop. Leave from your office early some day and then go for shopping.
Plan the Shopping: Shopping malls are a storehouse of all brands and you will literally never get bored of shopping and splurging extra, if you are unaware of what you exactly want. Hence, to manage your budget effectively, shop with a proper plan in hand.
Social Media Offers: Facebook fan pages will often inform you about some amazing discounts on branded apparels. So if you have a facebook account, do check frequently about the latest shopping offers from the greatest brands.
Don’t Just See Labels: Just because it is Levi’s or Denim, doesn’t mean it will fit you. Unless you are not satisfied by trying the accessories and clothes, don’t buy them just based on a hunch or merely because you like it.
Wait for Festivals: If you don’t have urgency for shopping and you can wait for a few days, always do that. Malls across the country give special discounts during festive seasons. Festival sales are always huge crowd pullers in the shopping malls.
If You Want, Rest: Bookstores in shopping malls are a great place to give some moments of relaxation to your tired feet especially if you are shopping alone. Read something and relax the feet after hours of shopping in the mall.
Arrive Earlier: If you arrive earliest in the mall, you will get a better parking lot that is a big advantage in festive seasons when people have to walk hundreds of meters to just park their car!
Plan Your Attire Well: If you are planning to try several clothes, it is logical to wear shorts, T-shirts and slippers, so that you can easily change every time you are in the trial room.
Be Aware of CP: Don’t just focus on prices in a single mall. Be aware of the competitive pricing of brands. If you can get the same clothing or brand at a cheaper price in a nearby store, it is worth saving some money.
Use Gift Coupons Wisely: If you are in possession of some gift hampers or coupons, store them at separate places in the purse so that when the need comes, you can easily take them out. Don’t mix them with other papers in your purse. Also, use the gift coupons smartly.
Mall Shopping Safety Tips
Shopping malls attract significantly high number of people of all ages. This gives miscreants and notorious pickpockets sufficient opportunity to take advantage of unaware shoppers. People who frequently indulge in shopping at malls must keep in mind the following safety tips.
- Never leave your belongings and purchased items unattended even for a couple of minutes.
- Try to limit the number of shopping bags you carry in malls. Prefer one large bag, or at the most two, so that you can keep a track of everything.
- Men must make it a habit to keep their wallets in the front pocket.
- Women, if they carry purses, must make sure that they hold it close to their body. If there are two people, the bag must be held in between the two people. This must be done during peak sale seasons when there is a huge rush in the malls.
- Never leave a child unattended outside malls, in a store or toy house. Always take them with you and keep a watch on them. Malls are the places where kidnappers are on the lookout to abduct kids.
- Avoid using washrooms that are situated very deep inside the mall or at the end corner of it.
- Never allow a child to go to the washroom without your assistance.
- If you’re shopping at night, request mall security officers to escort you to the parking area. This is most important, if you are alone.
- Avoid staying inside the large halls and top floors of a mall, especially, if it is the closing time.
- Assist kids aged below 6 years while using the escalators.
- When taking your kid to the mall, if possible, take another adult with you.
- Don’t look for items near warehouses in the malls or places where only the staff is allowed to enter.
- Be careful when standing in line, as children drift away from the line, while you are reading about some product or looking elsewhere.
- Don’t overburden a trolley by making more than a kid sit on it. If needed, use more than one trolley.
- Avoid using lifts or stairs, at night in the mall, if you suspect someone with restless or suspicious behavior.
- Push the cart on your own and don’t let it be pushed by the child. Children are unable to see shoppers coming in the front and they may bump into them. Let them smoothly move with the traffic.
- Don’t carry strollers on escalators. Use elevators for that purpose.
- Inform your child that he or she should be careful with using the escalators and must stand comfortably instead of leaning on the sides or trying to do something different.
- In case a person or child meets with an accident while using the escalator, don’t immediately rush back or jump. Instead press the alarm button provided at many places on handrails in elevators. If you start running back on the escalators, even you may fall.
- It is good to read safety pamphlets distributed by the shopping malls, every time you visit a mall.
- If shopping with toddlers, it is vital to bring good strollers and you must be accompanied by another adult. Right timing and weather conditions are also important determiners when taking toddlers out.
- Don’t park in areas very far from the vicinity of the mall. It is ideal to use the parking area.
- Be careful while withdrawing money from close by ATMs near malls. Pickpockets are mostly in hideouts, watching your every move. They target careless and casual shoppers. Make sure you are alert.
Shopping in malls is going to be here and rule the heart of people. While malls have become the perfect places for families to indulge in some shopping and luxuries of life, questions about safety issues in crowded places are certainly a matter of concern. By using the aforementioned shopping tips, you are surely going to get the best deals! Happy shopping!
Leather shoes are absolutely loved by men and women alike. They add sophistication and class to the outfit. But, do you know how to choose the perfect pair? Now, we don’t want to spend our money on a buy that we will regret later, do we? Here are some tips to choose the right pair for you.
There are different types of shoes that use the hide of various animals like cattle, goat, pig, crocodile, snake, deer and even lizard! They are also the most durable shoes and good care can make them last for years. Have you ever bought a pair of shoes that you regretted later because of poor quality or bad fitting? There are so many other criteria that a perfect pair of leather shoes must meet, like a well-attached sole and heel (stitched or glued), thickness of the leather, tendency to wrinkle and the polish of the shoes. Viewing the shoes may make everything seem to be fine. But, you need to feel the texture and the linings of the shoe too.
Choosing Leather Shoes
There are different types of leather that are used to make shoes. Polished and natural finish leather don’t get stained easily. The leather shoe should be well-lined from back to front. Three general classifications of leather are:
- Suede: Suede leather is very soft and won’t last if you wear them during monsoons. Same is the case with nu-buck leather. They are made by completely separating the grain from the hide. Also, they easily get stains, unlike patent leather, and need a lot of care. It is best to spray them with a protectant to make them last longer. Suede leather is generally low-cost.
- Full Grain: Most shoes are made using full grain leather. Often used for the entire shoe, full grain leather is commonly used in shoe parts such as shoe uppers and linings. It is the upper side of animal hide that once contained hair and that has now been removed. Full grain leather is not treated to remove imperfections. This makes it very durable and preferred by most people due to its fine quality. It also has a lower tendency to retain less moisture and easily takes the shape of the foot.
- Corrected Grain: As the name suggests, corrected grain leather has been treated using grain to correct imperfections after sanding off the leather. The hide is generally low quality and the natural grain is buffed. Then, an artificial layer of grain is applied on the hide. Such leather is generally used for dyeing that further hides the scars on the hide.
Other types of leathers are Nappa leather, buckskin, patent leather, tanned leather and shagreen. If the leather is too thin, your shoes are likely to wear off quickly and they are not the best choice if you plan on buying heeled shoes. Also, they easily take the shape of your feet and soon you will be able to see imprint of your toes onto the leather. While choosing look for a pair that has a strong leather so it lasts longer. Did you know? Pigskin is more permeable than calfskin, so it has more breath-ability for your feet.
Your shoe size may not be one of the conventional sizes. There are many people stuck somewhere between two shoe sizes like between 8 and 9. In such a case, you wouldn’t know which one to buy. So, you should try both sizes and preferably go for the bigger one because a shoe that is little too tight can make you feel very uncomfortable. Also, even though there is a scale for shoe sizes and yours may just be one of them, everyone’s width of the feet is different. Heavier people tend to have wider feet. If you are not sure about your foot size, ask the salesperson to measure both feet for you. If you are going to wear the shoes with socks, it is a smart move to try on the shoes wearing socks. This is because socks will make the fit of the shoe slightly tighter. Now, check the space between your biggest toe and the edge of the shoe. There should be a space of about half an inch between them. This is because our feet tend to expand by a size during the day. In fact, you should ideally buy shoes in the afternoon when your feet will be at its biggest size. Avoid the half-inch rule at this time. Once you decide to buy a pair of shoes, walk around in them in the store for about 5 minutes and then keep wearing them for another 5 minutes. It will help you to know whether your feet are comfortable in the pair and if they may give you a shoe bite.
Shoes designs rarely go out of fashion. So, anything you buy will be trendy even after years! There are several designs available in the market like Oxford shoes, loafers, boots, cap toes and monk strap shoes. Women have them in pumps, boots and Mary Janes. Try different styles to know what looks good on you. Some people who have a slim feet look great in slim-fit designs. But, if you have wide feet, go for such shoes that accommodate the width of your foot such as loafers and leather slip-on shoes. If you have wide feet but you are wearing a slim fit design, you will feel your feet spill out of the sole and stretch out from the sides. You will also be likely to suffer from warts and sores. You know it best what goes well with the outfits you intend to wear with your leather shoes. If you are doubtful about your choices, bring a friend along to choose the right pair. Do remember, that, your shoe must be comfortable apart from the style factor. Do not follow trends that make your feet unhappy! For low-heeled shoes, check the balance of the shoes by placing them on a table top. They should meet the surface at the center of the sole.
The most common colors are black and brown (dark or tan). They are classics and go well on all types of attires, especially formal suits. Other colors available in leather are oxblood, brick, gray, red and white. They are dyed using vegetable dye and aluminum dye. Also, remember that a good pair does not have any polish or oil stains. They should also not have any scars or marks.
Shoes that are made of calfskin, pigskin, kidskin or crocodile skin tend to be more expensive than the rest that may be made of veal or full grain leather. For men, a good-quality pair can cost anywhere around $350 onwards. However, they will be very durable so, it is definitely worth the price. My father buys the most expensive pair and they always last him for years! Shocker, huh? I know it because I teased him about buying a new pair and not telling me about them (yes, the shoe-obsession gene has been passed down the generations), until I found out they were more than 8 years old! I swear they looked so new like he just bought them off the store. Not to forget, though, he takes really good of care of his shoes. You should compare prices and quality offered by different stores for the same design of shoes, before you buy a pair.
Are you stuck with shoes that are too tight and now it’s impossible to wear them without wincing? Well, you don’t have to throw away your exquisite buy. You can stretch leather shoes at home! When you take off the laces, make sure you untie the laces before you get your feet out else it will stretch the top line of the shoe, ruining its fit. Always check the fit of the shoes before you buy them. So, I’d suggest you refrain from buying shoes online. Remember, that you need to take proper care of shoes so that their finish and shine last longer.
Worried about the blue flower arrangements to make for a theme party? Well, if you need some tips on floral arrangements using blue flowers, then you are on the right page. Here are some ideas to help you create eye-catching blue floral arrangements.
Arranging flowers is known to be one of the challenging tasks. When you have a bunch of blue flowers, making the right arrangements by using them alone or in combination with other flowers can be a slightly tough job. Though you have plenty of ideas, you need to pick the right option for making the blue flower arrangements look lively and catchy. These flowers are popularly used for special occasions due to their unique charm. With the right floral arrangements, these flowers look class apart. Here are some tips on making some fabulous arrangements for wedding decorations, bridal bouquets or party centerpieces.
Ideas to Choose From
The first and simplest arrangement is the one which is done using a bunch of single type of blue flowers. Once you have chosen and purchased a bunch of flowers, all you need to get is a glass vase or blue colored porcelain vase. Place the bunch in this vase or tie a metallic silver ribbon to the same if you don’t want to place it in the vase. You can have a monochromatic color scheme with a floral bunch which includes light and dark blue colored flowers. Add navy blue, sky blue and those flowers which have a bluish gray tint.
Pairing Leaves and Twigs
You can make appealing arrangements by adding fresh green leaves and dried twigs to the bunch. Choose the flowers and accordingly add leaves to the bunch. For tall flowers it is best to add tall twigs instead of leaves. Do not cut off the flower stalks or leaves from tall stems as they look awesome when paired with dried twigs. You can have a tall blue floral arrangement by adding this entire bunch of flowers and twigs to a tall cylindrical glass vase. Adding leaves and grass blades to short flowers is the best way to make a fresh and beautiful green and blue floral arrangement.
Fresh Floral Combinations
Now this can be a bit tricky as you need to add the right colored and sized flowers to the bunch of flowers. One of the best ideas is to pick white, off-white, pink, magenta, grayish flowers for making a perfect combination . Blue and white flowers with lots of green grass blades or leaves can also make beautiful looking arrangements. To have a nicely shaped bouquet or bunch, buy white or pink flowers of same type as that of the flowers. Even if you don’t get different colored flowers in same type, try to maintain uniformity in terms of size to ensure that the bunch looks lovely. Else, add large flowers at the center, graced with white and pink colored smaller flowers from all sides which are further graced with very few leaves. Grass blades coming out from the bunch in-between look simply awesome.
Fancy Holders and Vases
Any floral arrangement can’t be finished without a perfect flower holder, vase or tie up ribbons. If you are making a hand bouquet, opt for fancy satin ribbons or laces to tie up the same. Metallic ribbons offer the best way to tie up the bunch of flowers so as to hold the well-arranged pieces in place. Apart from these, you can find plenty of options in flower holders and vases. Transparent glass, frosted glass and porcelain vases make the best options to place the flowers. Trendy and designer flower holders are also available in a range of options from which you can choose a suitable piece. Make sure that you stick to transparent, white or shades of blue while buying a flower vase or holder. No matter where you place well-arranged bunch of flowers, do add narrow ribbons and grace the tall vases with golden tulle to have a well dressed centerpiece ready to jazz up the space.
I am sure that you are eager to try a few attractive arrangements, right? Then what are you waiting for, grab the best flowers, twigs and lovely white and pink flowers like calla lilies, rose, Gerbera, and get ready to create lovely bouquets and arrangements graced with colorful ribbons and delicate flower vases.
Do you want to experience barefoot running with your shoes still on? Toe shoes provide you with the same sensation while still protecting your feet.
Toe shoes are a rage amongst runners and trekkers. These shoes are quite different from the usual shoes as they have distinct toes and not a capped off look, unlike other shoes. This is the reason why they are also called five finger shoes. There are many advantages of toe shoes over other running shoes. The most important one includes the feel of running barefoot without inflicting any damage to your feet.
‘ Toe shoes have a separate toe space for each toe. They also have a thin sole which enhances the sense of touch while running. They are particularly helpful for rapid muscle building in the leg region.
‘ You also improve your agility, balance by wearing these shoes while running and jogging. This can indeed help you to run faster and for a longer duration. Most people prefer to wear toe shoes to impart strength to the muscles in feet and leg.
‘ Besides running, they can also be worn while trekking, water sports or even a casual walk down the park.
‘ Another advantage of wearing toe shoes for running is that their extremely lightweight sole does not weigh you down. Hence, you can run without feeling tired.
‘ The breathable nylon upper keeps your feet from getting wet due to sweat while performing rigorous exercises. All these benefits can add to your performance while running or working out.
Finding right sized toe shoes can be one difficult task for you, as they do not follow standard US shoe measurements. The different shoe sizes are expressed in inches. Hence, you will actually have to measure your foot size before buying toe shoes.
(To find out the correct size of your shoes, place a sheet of paper perpendicular to the wall. Now stand on this paper with your heels touching the wall. Stand as straight as possible and keep your heels at the same level. Ask someone to make a mark from the heel to the tip of your longest toe (this need not be your big toe always). Measure the distance between the heel and toe to get accurate measurements.)
You may also take this paper of markings along with you while shopping for toe shoes. The salesperson should be able to provide you with correct shoe size. Conversion charts are also available which convert the inches into the corresponding shoe size for the particular manufacturer.
Toe shoes are extremely easy to care for as you simply need to wash them. You can step inside a shower by wearing your toe shoes and then apply some shower gel to get rid of the odor. Alternatively, you may also put them in washing machine and run it. However, it is recommended that you dry them by hanging from a clothesline only. Putting them in a dryer isn’t a bright idea.
Vibram is by far the most leading toe shoe manufacturer. The other brands mostly deal in thin sole shoes, that render a near barefoot experience. Vibram has got pretty high rating on all review sites. Vibram toe shoes price is around USD 80. You can order them from the company’s website or from some online shopping sites. Some retail stores may stock them, though they are rare to come in the exact size you are looking for.
Toe shoes are perfect for you if you are an athlete or a sportsperson. They can give you a comfort that you have never experienced before.
Most people are unaware of their correct shoe size and hence end up buying ill-fitting ones. Read the article and follow step by step instructions on how to measure your shoe size, to avoid any such situations.
When you go to a shoe store to buy shoes, it becomes essential to know your shoe size so that you don’t end up by the incorrect pair. If you buy shoes larger than your foot, wearing them is not possible and even if you do, walking in them is sure to be a nightmare. Also shoes which are smaller than normal size tend to get tight on your foot and again you won’t feel comfortable wearing them.
Measuring Your Shoe Size with Ruler
It is important to collect all materials you will be needing for your job. You will require a blank piece of paper, sticky tape, pencil or pen and a ruler. You can also keep a tape measure with you, in case you are not comfortable using a ruler. Also ensure the piece of paper is bigger in size than your feet.
Keep the blank piece of paper on the floor and press it over with your hands, so that it becomes smooth. To make sure the paper stays fixed in this position, tape it to the floor from all four corners.
Remove your shoes. It is important you keep your socks on while measuring your shoe size, as you would obviously wear shoes with socks. This will help you get an even accurate measurement. Place your foot firmly on the paper and your shin should be a little ahead of your ankle. Your toes should not be curled. Keep a pencil or pen nearby before you step on the paper as you would require it shortly.
Now pick up a pencil or pen and trace an outline of your foot on the paper, while standing in the same position. Hold your pencil or pen straight up and tight when you draw the outline. In case you are not comfortable doing this yourself, take help from someone. Take this foot back and follow the same procedure with your other foot.
Once you have the outline of both your feet, take out tapes from all corners and remove the paper. Take this paper and keep it on a table for you to work on it further.
You will have to first measure the length of your foot, which is the distance between the heel and tip of your toe. Keep the ruler between your toe tip and heels to draw a straight line from top to bottom. Note down this measurement on a piece of paper. To measure the width of your foot, place your ruler between the two side ends of your foot and draw a straight line at the place where this distance is maximum. Note down this measurement.
Repeat the above step to measure the length and breath of your other foot. There may be a slight difference in measurement of both the feet. In such a case take the larger measurement as your shoe size.
Once you have the measurement of your feet, you can easily get your shoe size from websites online. To help you with this, a table is provided below, which will give you your shoe size depending on your foot measurement.
Shoe Size Chart
This chart will help you with how to measure your shoe size, once you have your foot measurement:
|Measurement (Inches)||Men Shoe Size in USA/Canada|
Tips and Warnings
Remember these tips when you go about the task:
- Whenever your shoe size lies in between two sizes, you should always go with the larger size while picking up shoes.
- In case you are measuring for children, you will have to keep doing it every time before buying shoes as their size keeps increasing very fast.
- If you are being able to draw the outline of your foot, just mark out the end points at your heel and toe line for the length and the most distant points on the sides for the width. Then take measurement and continue with the procedure.
- You can use a measuring tape as well, instead of a ruler to measure your shoe size.
- It is observed that shoes of different brand manufacturers have slight variations when it comes to sizes. Hence you should always wear and check shoes before buying.
After getting necessary instructions, try it at home and find the proper shoe size before you buy a pair. This should prevent you from buying shoes of the wrong size and also help you, when you are purchasing shoes online.