Category: Bejewelled

Ear inspo

On my birthday in December I had two new ear piercings – tragus and conch in my right ear (for the uninitiated, your tragus is the buttony bit in the middle, connected to your head, and the conch is in the middle of your ear cavity, like where bud headphones would sit).

Me getting pierced at The Oasis

Lots of people had told me that the tragus was quite painful to heal and awkward to sleep on, but I’ve had awkward and uncomfortable piercings in the past and always managed to persevere.

So the husband kindly paid and I had them done at The Oasis in Birmingham, who I trust implicitly because there has been a piercing place there for as long as I can remember.

The piercer told me that I’d be able to change the jewellery after 6 weeks, and if I went back they’d be happy to do it for me.

It’s now been 8 weeks and I don’t think either of them are healed enough to be changed. Most probably because I’m one of life’s natural born pickers (I know!) and I do find myself inadvertently twizzling and poking them. I really ought to bathe them more, but I kind of gave up after about 3 weeks when they seemed to be healing so well.

I’m my own worst enemy and don’t deserve nice things!

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Both of them have keloid bumps on and the conch still bleeds occasionally. It’s in a funny position for healing and also my hair gets wrapped around it sometimes.

Anyway, whilst waiting for them to stop itching/bleeding/oozing and being bumpy (nice, no?)  I’ve been looking at what kind of jewellery I want to go for. I definitely want a hoop in the conch piercing (I actually wanted it pierced with a hoop, but the piercer, he say no).

Love this jewellery – opals are so beautiful

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Quite fancy something ornate in my tragus.

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How pretty are all these earring combos? Definitely inspiring me to get some more done once these have healed.

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You can read about my other piercings here.

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

 

 

Jewellery bargains from New Look

I’m a big fan of costume jewellery as a cheap treat and a way to jazz up your look, but I’ve noticed that a lot of High Street stores, even the more affordable ones like New Look, are getting quite expensive lately.

On the plus side, at sale time there are usually some considerable discounts which means bargains galore!

I picked these beauties up in the January sale online – all 3 items for less than a fiver.

Purple stone ring – £1

Layered feather necklace – £2

Multi stud earrings and ear cuff – £1

Have you had any great bargains recently?
Thanks, as always, for reading! x

Poundland bargains (well, obviously!)

Saying you got a bargain from Poundland is stating the bleedin’ obvious, because everything is a pound, obvs!

The point of me calling these things bargains is that they would have cost more elsewhere, therefore they’re bargains in the true sense of the word, and not just in context of Poundland.

Got it?

Good.

When I was a kid, going into somewhere like Poundland would have been the height of embarrassment, the stuff of “look around, hope none of your friends see you and run in quickly” nightmares. Strangely, when my brother and sister were younger (there’s a 20 year difference), Poundland had developed an almost cult following among kids, who’d often request to go in after school knowing full well they’d come out with something like a cheap toy or some chocolate. After all, who can say no to spending a pound?

These days I’m all about the bargain, although going in for one thing and coming out £16 lighter isn’t exactly economising, but still. I blame the owners for diversifying so much – they now do make up, jewellery and nail varnish so it’s easy to just pick up a few extra bits.

Anyway, I digress.

Here’s what I bought:

Peacock feather earrings – because, peacock feathers!

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Leopard print crinkle scarf – because leopard print!

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Enamel bangle – the stones are a pretty pale pink

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Silver lurex skinny scarf – ideal for adding interest to an all black outfit (I’m thinking black cami, leather trousers and pointy heels)

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Are you a Poundland/Dollar Store/bargain shop shopper?

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

Piercings

My new nipple bar turned up today (the ball fell off my previous one!) so I thought I’d talk piercings.

Piercing chart

I like piercings. A lot. And I like tattoos. Even more. What I don’t like is stretching. Ugh. Starts as a piercing and then gets stretched into a hole.

a) I don’t get it

and

b) I don’t get it

I mean, what’s attractive about putting holes in your body? Piercings are pretty – they add interest and sparkliness.

Holes aren’t pretty.

Ear stretching

Even if you try to make them so with coloured tunnels

Ear stretching with coloured jewellery

And what about when it goes wrong?

Ear stretching gone wrong

Ear stretching gone wrong

Vom!

Anyway, this post wasn’t about stretching. Back to piercings.

I currently have my belly button, nose, ear lobes and ear cartilage pierced. I’ve had other piercings that I don’t have anymore. And each of them was a different experience.

Lobes
I don’t remember the first set. I was about 18 months old. I know some people have a huge problem with that and think parents should leave kids to make their own decision when they’re older. I think it’s fine. Babies look pretty with stud earrings. So shoot me!

I had a second set of holes done when I was about 22. I had them done on my lunch hour and they basically got them wrong – they weren’t level. So I had to take them out and wait for them to heal, then get them redone straight! No surprise I went to a different place…

Cartilage
I had my right ear cartilage, at the top, done when I was 16. It was done in a hairdressers, which is incomprehensible now, but was the done thing “back in the day”. They did it with a gun, which is now illegal as it shatters the cartilage. Boy did I suffer with that piercing. It used to swell so much you couldn’t see the stud. It filled with pus. Sometimes just the slightest touch would make it ooze green gunge. Would I take it out? Would I hell as like! I was proud of that piercing! It wasn’t very common at the time and I felt very cool with it done (even with bloody goop just under the skin). It took around 2 years to heal properly. I couldn’t sleep on my left side properly for about 18 months, I had to put my hand between my ear and the pillow. That’s how dedicated I was!

Belly button
I had this done when I was 18. It was a fairly new piercing at the time, not very common, and I was desperate to get it done. This was the first time I went into a “proper” studio. I felt way too uncool to be in there with all these alternative kids with bright hair and tattoos. Laying down on the bed, I flinched massively in pain, only to be told that was just the cold numbing spray, ha ha! The piercer applied the clamp, jabbed the needle through, threaded the bar and that was it. I was so pleased that I went shopping to try bikinis on immediately afterwards, even though it was only February. I had some mild discomfort afterwards but it’s always behaved well. I can’t see me ever taking it out.

Auricle
Next I had an auricle piercing (I’ve only just found out it’s called that, I just called it half way up my ear!) Just on one side, the left. I mainly wear a stud, but lately have been wearing this on a night out, which is pretty cute.

Diamante studd ear cuff

I don’t remember much about that one at all, so it can’t have been too traumatic.

These were all pre-husband. The next two I hold him entirely responsible for (in a good way).

Nose piercing
Firstly, I was drunk. You shouldn’t get pierced when you’re drunk, and a piercer shouldn’t pierce you when you’re drunk. But again this was just an independent jeweller. With a gun. I shouted “fuck”, very loudly. The pre-cursor to this is that we were having a weekend away at the British seaside and, predictably, it rained a lot. By the third day of rain we took refuge in a pub for most of the afternoon. And my husband, spotting the shop opposite, dared me to get my nose pierced.

Responsible huh?

I remember going back to work and not making eye contact with anyone because I didn’t think a nose piercing was a very corporate look. But no-one has ever said anything, and I’ve never regretted it. I swapped to a ring earlier this year and can’t believe I didn’t do it sooner. I love it.

Nipple piercing
This was something I’d previously never thought about much, and certainly wasn’t on my wishlist. Husband has his pierced, which I like. Then a friend told me she’d had hers done and that put the seed into my mind, which husband encouraged. I went from not really ever thinking about it to “I must have it done” within about 2 hours one Friday night. Needing to strike while the iron was hot (i.e. before I backed out) I phoned round and round on the Saturday to find somewhere I could have it done.

When I went into the studio I didn’t want to make a big fuss about the fact I was going to be getting my boob out, so I sat down and pulled my dress down straight away. The piercer didn’t look up, but carried on prepping, getting clean needles and jewellery and the like. I thought if I then covered up I’d look prudish, so I just sat there with my right boob hanging out for an inordinate amount of time, talking away like it was the most normal thing in the world. It was cringey! This was another mega painful one. There were swear words. I didn’t feel well afterwards and actually went to bed for an hour. To clean it I had to dangle my boob into a mug full of salt water. Good job I’m not blessed in the breast department, or I’d have needed a bigger mug.

The final piercings are all down to me, and all a bit stupid really (not stupid piercings, just stupid for me). I don’t have any of them anymore. Read on to find out why

Hand piercing
I took my little sister to get her belly button pierced and the guy in the studio had a microdermal next to his eye, all sparkly and pretty. I expressed an interest as I’d seen them before and they looked nice. I was told that it’s a really simple procedure, they just make a little hole with a holepunch type thing and feed the jewellery into the hole. It’s anchored in because of the shape and then your skin heels over it. The jewel bit just screws onto the anchor that’s in your skin.

Microdermal jewellery

“It barely hurts” they said.

They lied.

I wanted it in my hand. There were scalpels and skin peeling and all sorts of horrific pain. I didn’t think I could stand it. It was horrendous. But it looked so very very pretty.

Hand microdermal

It was a bit awkward and I was wary of catching it on things and again of people’s comments at work. I caught people looking at it but no-one ever said anything.

This one came to a rather abrupt end in a shopping centre. I was getting off an escalator and someone cut across my path, catching my hand with her handbag. As I walked away I thought that my hand felt sore, looked down, and the anchor bit WAS HANGING OUT. I went a little bit woozy and weird and tried to push it back in. But it wasn’t to be. I had to yank it and break the bits of skin that had started to grow around it (which sounds more horrendous than it was). I vowed to get it redone once I’d heeled, but in truth I was too wuss!

Triple forward helix piercing
Ah, the internet, purveyor of all things pretty. That’s how this one came about. This exact photo.

Triple forward helix

Love love LOVE the look (still do now). But impatience led to me wanting it to look like that immediately. So I asked for all 3 piercings to be done at once. The piercer did say it wasn’t advisable, but obviously I knew better, right?

Wrong.

The bars they used were too long, for a start, so I didn’t get the look I wanted (the picture above uses labrets which are more like studs). The healing didn’t go well and one came up in a lump, so I had to admit defeat and take it out. After a couple of months I conceded that it was an experiment that had gone wrong and decided to remove the others. Once came out fine. The other one was cross threaded. I couldn’t remember which way was loosening and which way was tightening so I wasn’t even sure I was doing the right thing to try and get it out. In a fit of exasperation I tried strong nail clippers to cut through the metal. It didn’t work (obvs). I had to go back to the piercer and get them to remove it.

I’m not sure I’m done with this piercing yet and might revisit it. But definitely only one at a time.

Lip piercing
Perhaps my most stupid of ideas and one I blame firmly on hitting my mid-30s and having a crisis! There can be no other explanation. In my defence I had always wanted my lip pierced, and always held back due to work and appearances and the fact that it would probably be frowned upon by management. I finally got fed up of toeing the line and decided it was a box that needed ticking. So I had it done on my birthday, when I’d broken up from work, a few days before Christmas. I was assured that there was no reason it should affect my eating or impact my enjoyment of Christmas dinner (food is always on my mind).

We nearly had a repeat of the wonky earlobes piercing, when the lady in the shop marked the dot ready for the piercer. “That’s not in the middle I told her”. She said “sorry, we’re supposed to line it up with the middle of your top lip but yours is slightly unlevel”. Er, thanks.

The piercing itself was not as traumatic as I feared. The skin under your bottom lip is pretty thick and I had visions of multiple bodging to break through, but it was done in one push and that was that.

This photo was taken on the day I had it done. You can see the lump inside my lip!

My lip piercing

Did it affect my Christmas dinner? Yes! Gutted.

Did it affect my job? No-one said anything. I think by this point they were used to me being a bit left of centre.

I never loved it though, it didn’t look how I’d hoped. It lasted about 6 months and then I took it out of my own volition. I found out afterwards that no-one had ever really liked it, and it put my husband off kissing me.

So, that’s my piercing journey!

So far…

New jewellery

Yep, I’ve been collecting some more luscious stuff to adorn myself with (when I say collecting I mean buying, obvs, I’m not just taking it from places in a random magpie like fashion). All silver as usual, with some turquoise thrown in (still one of my current favourite things)

Ebay – as always I have so much love for ebay.

I ordered this bracelet without realising it’s actually a perfect match to the boho necklace I also bought a few weeks back. From a completely different seller too, much coincidence!

Silver coin boho bracelet

Silver coin boho bracelet

Silver and turquoise stretch bracelet

Turquoise and silver bracelet

Slave chain bracelet

Turquoise hand bracelet (2)

Hamsa slave chain bracelet

Hamsa bracelet (2)

Eye of Ra necklace

Eye of Ra silver necklace


Then, from the Boohoo sale, which is pretty damn good!

How cool is this wood and metal square bangle? Reduced to just £2 in the sale, much cheapness.

Boohoo wooden bangle

Turquoise and silver double ring, also Boohoo (£4 – now down to £2)

Boohoo double turquoise and silver ring

I’m classing this as jewellery for the head (I know that’s not really a thing, but it kind of should be); chain headband with side droppers, for want of a better description (£3, Boohoo)

Boohoo headchain

I’m such a costume jewellery lover; it’s such a cheap way to really bring an outfit alive (cringy fashion speak!!)

My current favourite things

Nivea fruity shine lipbalms. These are just gorge on my lips. I reviewed them here.

Nive Fruity Shine

Selling on ebay. It’s such a pain but worth it when you make a few pennies (because that means guilt free future shopping by reinvesting the profit!)

Ebay logo

Rodizio Rico. A Brazilian churrascaria in the Mailbox in Birmingham. Basically a full on meat fest. Men with meat on skewers carve it on to your plate at your table. I took my Dad for Father’s Day. He went caveman!

Rodizio Rico

Platform sandals. Way easier to wear than you expect, because the height of the sole offsets the height of the heel. These are my most recent ones, part of a mini haul from from Matalan.

Matalan brown platform sandals

Turquoise and silver jewellery. Perfect combination, and surprisingly versatile. Looks great with a tan (which I unfortunately don’t have at the moment; thanks for nothing summer 2015). Lots featured on my Pinterest bejewelled page. This one is a recent purchase from ebay (I’m buying as well as selling!)

Silver and turquoise necklace

My Naked Flame balcony burner. A Christmas present from the husband. Fill it with burning gel and set it alight – it’s mesmerising to sit outside in the dark and watch it flicker away.

Naked Flame gel burner

What are you loving right now?

Summer workwear – a variation on a theme

I’ve been a bit predictable / unimaginative with my work outfits for the last few days. I find dresses so easy to wear in summer – one item to throw on, no colour matching, no waistbands which can be uncomfortable and hot when sitting at a desk all day. All of these dresses are from Matalan, from last year, and all of them are crepe – the easiest fabric in the world to own. Lightweight and crease free, they dry mega quickly and don’t need ironing. I’d have a whole wardrobe full of crepe clothing if I could!

Pink dress – Matalan
Snakeskin and feather sandals – not sure, maybe ebay? Love these, they have 3 ankle straps covered in purple jewel chips and small feathers, and a tiny wedge heel
Jewellery: Turquoise colour ring – Primark, turquoise colour cuff – gift, silver swirl ring – Camden (present from husband on a day out)
Tortoiseshell sunglasses – Primark
Chunky coin necklace – ebay

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Snakeskin feather sandals

Snakeskin feather sandals

Silver turquoise jewellery

Boho jewellery

Floral dress – Matalan
Red pointy ankle strap flats – Matalan
Multiple rings – H&M, Birmingham rag market, Primark
Round sunglasses – Primark
Freshwater pearls – Mauritius (present from husband when we got married, bought on the beach from a local fisherman)

Summer workwear

Red pointy flats

Summer floral dress

Summer workwear

Freshwater pearls

Blue dress – Matalan
Tan gladiator sandals – independent shoe shop
Brown iridescent glass beads – H&M
Turquoise colour ring – as before (Primark) / amber ring – gift from Mother-in-Law

Blue dress

H&M glass beads

Turquoise and amber jewelery

What’s everyone else wearing for summer?

Ebay crazy!

Sometimes there are things on ebay that don’t make sense.

Like the fact that a pair of nude ballet pumps from George, that only cost £6 brand new, have sold for £22. I’ve seen vouchers selling for more than their actual face value. On the flip side, other things sell for pennies. Madness I tell thee!

One of the problems I have with selling on ebay is that I tend to talk myself back into keeping stuff that I’m listing for sale. I’ll write such a nice description, with ideas on how an item can be worn, that I end up thinking I shouldn’t sell it after all.

But now I’ve turned over a new leaf in terms of what I do and don’t keep I’m being ruthless. 8 things sold at the weekend (although I must admit that I was kind of relieved one of the items – a pair of yellow shoes – didn’t sell, because I saw a lovely pinterest post last week that gave me a new idea of how to wear them and I secretly hoped no-one would bid!)

What to do with the fruits of my labour? Why, reinvest of course! And where better to buy from, than the crazy world of ebay, where pennies can buy you so much more than on the High Street.

(OK, ‘fess up time, I ordered some of this stuff before any of my items had actually sold).

I’ve mentioned the jewellery bargains that are to be had from China in the past, so I pressed the button on some bits that have been on my watch list (and some bits that were just impulse buys!)

Skull necklace – £3.48 (free postage)

Skull necklace

Coin statement necklace – £5.52 (free postage)

Coin necklace

Spider ring – £1.96 (free postage)

Spider ring

Multi stone row earring – 99 pence (free postage)

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Diamante stud cuff effect earring – £2.65 (free postage)

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Purple turquoise ring – 99 pence (99 pence postage). I saw this at a mega bargain price and the auction was just finishing, so I snapped it up.

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And some hair accessories to pretty up my unruly, growing ever so slowly, pain in the ass barnet.

Elastic and chain headband – £1.00 (90 pence postage)

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Beaded feather headdress – £2.55 (free postage). This is subtle enough to be able to wear it all summer, not just for festivals.

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Feather headdress – £6.99 (£1.99 postage). Couldn’t resist this – I absolutely love peacock feathers. Hoping it gets here in time for Download Festival next week.

Feather headdress

Just in case, I also ordered a backup from a UK seller! (£7.50, 90 pence postage) Let’s gloss over the fact that my hair looks nothing like that…sob

Peacock feather headdress

I tend not to buy clothes from ebay due to sizing and not knowing if it will fit (such a ballache to have to relist) but you can’t really go wrong with accessories. I’m also currently in a less is more mood on clothes, and all about piling on the jewellery for interest (that’s not to say I’m wearing less clothes, obvs, just plainer stuff that’s the perfect foil for statement accessories). Ebay is such a treasure trove of unusual stuff, and of course it’s always exciting to get a parcel through the post.

This little piggy went to market

Specifically the Birmingham Rag Market.

This has been in my life for as long as I can remember. As a kid, going into town on the train with my Mom to purchase fabric for curtains (she was a keen seamstress), as a teenager buying clubbing clothes from some of the independent traders, and into my 20s buying antique and vintage jewellery from 2 kooky old ladies.

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I haven’t been to the market for quite a while. It’s rare I shop in real life any more! And the only chance I get to go into town is on Saturdays and Sundays – the market is closed on Sundays and Saturday are just hellish – why would you?!

Anyway, I digress. The rag market is still a hive of tatt and treasures. Hats, masks, bargain branded make up, fancy dress, sparkly jewellery, cheap shoes, patterned tights, bright coloured fabrics, vintage clothes and mobile phone accessories sit alongside each other seamlessly.

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There’s always a gem to be had if you’re patient. I wasn’t in the market (geddit!) for anything, but the key is having an open mind.

So, what did I score?

Some costume jewellery – £1 each!

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The red one looks like a jewelled fruit depending which way you wear it, and the “pearl” one has a petty diamante trim. I can’t get a good close up of the black one, but it has marcasite effect hearts on the side.

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I spotted a rail of 70s looking leather and suede jackets on one of the vintage stalls. I’ve wanted a 70s tan jacket for a while, and never found the right one. This looked like it might fit the bill.

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But it was ever so slightly too small and wouldn’t fasten. 70s women were a lot smaller(and I’m not the waif I once was…) Despite the stall owner telling me I could have it for £15 (a tenner discount from the marked up price of £25) I decided not to impulse buy.

However, after thinking about it all day (and seeking the husband’s opinion via the medium of picture message) I decided to go for it. After all, who wears their jackets “done up” anyway?

Here it is; a total bargain and a great shape/colour combo.

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And I’m pretty happy with myself!

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Time for some street food now; review to follow. Happy Friday!

Cool Jewels

I’m a big fan of jewellery – it can make or break an outfit. More specifically I’m a big fan of statement jewellery. Loud, in your face, unusual and quirky. I don’t do subtle and I don’t do expensive.

The High Street is a great source of cool jewels at a good price. But even some of the main stores can go OTT on price for something that is, essentially, a transient piece. Not necessarily because you’ll get fed up of it, but because the quality will fail at some point. Water, soap, perfume and even natural body oils will contribute to the deterioration of costume jewellery, stripping the metal colouring. Studs and rhinestones will come loose and fall out. So buy cheap and enjoy!

I don’t wear gold, gold coloured or brass jewellery. I’ve been purely a silver/white gold girl for a loooong time, and I don’t like mixing metals.

Here are some of my current faves.

Bird ring from H&M – £5.99

Bird ringH&M bird ring

Set of 6 double rings from H&M – £3.99 (these come in different sizes so you can wear them as midi rings, which I’ve been obsessed by ever since Phoebe in Friends)

Silver rings

Double rings with chain from H&M (ages old, can’t remember price but around £3)

H&M double ring with chain

Poundland launched their range of own brand jewellery – Purple Ivy – fairly  recently, and I’ve picked up a couple of bits from there.

Stag head ring from Poundland – £1

Stackable diamante rings (set of 3) from Poundland – £1

 

Moving on to Primark – I bought these ages ago. They’re adjustable, so can be worn as midi rings too.

Initial rings from Primark – £1.99 each

Initial rings

This one reminds me of a Russian Doll!

New Look – can’t remember price (less than a fiver)

New Look enamel ring

This is my newest addition.

Double chain harness ring from Boohoo – £3

Double chain harness ringDaisy ringAnd now for my favourite and most bargainous source of jewellery – Ebay. There are many sellers in the Far East who are listing jewellery for pennies with free postage, and you’d be justified in thinking it would be rubbish. Not so. Comparable in quality to most things on the High Street you can pick up some really unusual pieces at total steal. Shipping usually takes around 10 days (although can be longer) but it’s worth the wait. Alternatively, if you’re wary or need something more quickly, there are UK sellers with great bargains too.

Coin necklace via ebay – approx. £5

Coin necklace

Stag head necklace via ebay – approx. £3 from the Far East (UK sellers are listing them for more)

Staghead necklace

Skeleton cameo pendant via ebay – approx. £3

Skeleton cameo<

Love/Hate double ring via ebay – approx. £5

Love hate ring 2 Love hate ring

Heart shaped nipple bar via ebay from China – £1.49 for 2!

Nipple bar

And here are some pieces I’ve received as gifts, so I don’t know the source or cost, but I do know that I love them.

Black acrylic ring

 

 Floral skull pendant

Floral skull pendant

Turquoise cuff and turquoise snake bangle

I can feel an ebay spree coming on…