My reviews are based on my personal experience with a product or event. I am not a professional product tester nor do I get paid for any of my blog posts.

The items that I post reviews on, have either been purchased on the internet or through a local vendor. Additionally I will review items that I got on sale, as a gift or as a sample from either the manufacurer or some other source.

Note: always read the manufacturers directions on how to properly use a product and craft carefully. Additionally, I am an Amazon Associate and may earn a few cents (literally) from your clicking on my Amazon links. Since they raised the minimum payout from earnings to $10 I haven't seen a credit for a while but eventually I will get one.

Every penny counts when trying to set a budget to get supplies to use for my reviews, tutorials and hauls. However, you do not have to use my links. You can use your favorite search engine to find the best price for your budget.

Dolce & Gabbana Dolce Matte Red Lipstick in Flirt 621

Dolce & Gabbana Dolce Matte Red Lipstick in Flirt 621 is a perfect blend of emollients and pigment, the quality of this lipstick is amazing.  Everyone needs a red lipstick but finding the right one can be difficult.  I have been searching for the perfect matte lipstick that is not drying to my lips.  I was a little skeptical when I first received the free Dolce&Gabbana red Matte Lipstick sample from BzzAgent.  It looked like every other red lipstick on the market. Then I tried it on and instantly fell in love with it.

The Dolce & Gabbana Dolce Matte moisturizing formula lipstick in Flirt 621  is a rich red color with subtle blue undertones.  What is good about blue undertones in a lipstick is that it brightens your smile and Creates the illusion of whiter teeth.  Additionally, the pigment and lasting formula on this lipstick is amazing.
The formula in this lipstick is moisturizing and not drying on my lips.  I have tried so many of the matte lipsticks and most dried my lips out and made them look bad.  My teenager tried it on and loves it too.  She even kept the sample.  
Dolce & Gabbana Dolce Matte Red Lipstick in Flirt 621 is not cheap at an average price of $37.00, however I believe it is pigmented enough that a little goes a long way on my lips.  I liked it enough to pay the $37 for the full 0.12 oz. tube.  I recommend visiting Sephora or Macy's to see the lipstick for yourself if you are searching for a non-drying matte lipstick that is a rich pigmented red. 

Thank you to Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, and BzzAgent for sending me a free sample to test and review. If you would like to test and review products, then you should contact BzzAgent for more information. They are great to work with and their website is super easy to use.

Jewel Loom Inspirations by Julianna C. Avelar | Review

Jewel Loom Inspirations by Julianna C. Avelar is wonderfully done book filled with colorful and beautiful projects for making loom jewelry using her Jewel Loom (from Beadalon). I did a book flip though so that you can enjoy the beautiful projects, however I did  cover the materials lists for each project and quickly passed through the instructions to preserve the joy of actually owning the book.

The “Jewel Loom Inspirations” book is a wonderful book for the first time and beginning Beader to learn how to use a loom and how make a variety of different type of jewelry projects.  The more experienced Beader may enjoy the many beautifully designed projects that are included in this book.  The Book is perfect to use along with Julianna’s Jewel Loom kit from Beadalon.  

The technique pages include well thought out photographs so that the reader can truly follow along. 
There are some great step by step photo for each technique, as well as the project. Below is a picture I took of Julianna demonstrating her "Jewel Loom" at a local Craft Show.  It really is easy to use the loom and her designs for it are excellent.

The projects included in the "Jewel Loom Inspirations"  book are very contemporary and can be worn by anyone wanting to make and show off unique and beautiful jewelry.  

The book contents includes:
  • ·      Introduction
  • ·      Getting Started
  • ·      Materials (easy to find materials, including adhesives)
  • ·      Tools (she lists tools that are specific to these projects)
  • ·      The Jewel Loom (A great explanation of the Jewel Loom and how to use it)
  • ·      Stringing The Warp Threads
  • ·      Building a Base
  • ·      Finishing Techniques
  • ·      17 Projects:
    • o   Checkered Cuff
    • o   Ocean’s Desire Beaded Bracelet
    • o   Elegant Pearl Bracelet
    • o   Ombre Cubed Bracelet
    • o   Great Pyramid Cuff
    • o   Surf’s Up Beachy Cuff
    • o   Bugle Bead Leather Cuff
    • o   Mix-and-Match Beaded Band
    • o   Boho Happiness Wrap
    • o   Mardi Gras Beaded Band
    • o   Funky Fringe Headband
    • o   Loopy Jewel Ring
    • o   Victorian Choker
    • o   Goddess Amulet
    • o   Sunshine Sparkle Earring
    • o   Swarovski Crystal Brooch
    • ·      And a wonderful Inspiration Gallery that features the work of other Designers & Artists.

I really found that the “Jewel Loom Inspirations” project photographs, explanations and tutorials in this book were so very helpful in figuring out how to properly use the jewel loom.  She also offers some tips throughout the book to help the reader gain some additional insight and/or skills.  The step-by-step directions in this book are well thought out and very easy to follow. The photography of the jewelry projects in this book is beautiful.  The projects are fairly easy to do and do not involve a tremendous investment in time and money.  

For those that love using beading charts, this book does have one for a more difficult project.  However, the design of most of these projects truly does not require a graph to be able to complete the projects. 

I love this book and would recommend it as a great accompanying gift with the Jewel Loom Kit.

You can buy either through Amazon.  I am including a link for you. 

DIY Midori Style Passport Size Travelors Notebook Tutorial

I wanted a plastic or vinyl passport sized Midori Style Traveler's Notebook in a fun color to carry in my purse.  Since I did not want to spend $30 or $40 on one,  I decided it would be fun to make one.  For those who are not familiar with the passport size midori, these are leather covers with elastic that hold one or more notebooks.  These notebooks come in vast selection of papers from water color paper to grid paper.  What one puts in their midori depends on what they intend to use it for.  I want mine to do brain dumps in, so I just needed inexpensive paper notepads.

I decided to pay a quick visit to my local Daiso store to see what products they carried that I might use to make my passport traveler's Notebook.  I was really pleased to find this cute passport cover in a fun green color that I could easily convert into a Midori Style Travelor's Notebook.  This book has a pockets on the inside covers which can hold cards, stickers and etc.  This is the perfect choice for my DIY Midori Style Passport size Travelors Notebook.

Supplies Used for this Project:

  • 1 vinyl passport cover  ($1.50)
  • 2 passport sized journals ($1.50 for a set of 3)
  • 2 charms ($1 at Michaels)
  • Assorted beads (from my bead stash)
  • 2mm Elastic Cording   ($1.00 per yard)
Tools Used for this Project:
  • Steel Leather Hole Punch (size appropriate to the elastic cording)
  • Cutting Mat
  • Scissors
  • E2000 Glue (optional)

Step 1:
Open up the passport and lay flat.  Punch two holes approximately a 1/4" from the top, using the steel hole punch.  Then punch two more holes 1/4" from the bottom of the passport cover. Using the process as step one, punch one hole in the center (middle) of the spine.

Step 2:
Take the elastic and measure it out to 2 1/2  times the length of the notebook.  My book is around
 Thread the elastic through one of the bottom holes and then through the opposite hole.

I like the look of bead on my fauxdori. So once I threaded the elastic, I added a bead and then tied a knot.  Then I pulled the knot through the bead to hide it.  Additionally, I wanted a book mark so I left about 5 inches of elastic at one and then rethreaded that through one of the holes.

Step 3:
Add a few beads and a charm to the elastic book mark to decorate it a bit.

Step 4:

Take the elastic and cut a piece that is a little less than twice the width of the folder.  Add a charm or a bead and tie a knot.

Thread this piece through the center whole, leaving the end with the knot on the inside. Use this piece to hold the cover closed when not in use.

Step 5:

To finish the project, just add the notebooks by opening them through the middle and slipping them through the elastic.

These two fit perfectly.

This was a pretty easy project to do and I ended up making a few extras.  I changed where I put the holes for the elastic on the pink one so that it would look different.  I really like how they came out.

Note: This is not a sponsored post, I purchased everything I used in this project.