The Top Story at fabulous

Jo, the owner of fabulous, answers some questions about the newest collection to hit stores….

Tell us about the latest collection to be launched at fabulous?

Story by Kranz and Ziegler is the newest charm bracelet concept to come out of Denmark, the home of brands like Pandora and Trollbeads that have already taken the world by storm – including fabulous customers! Story is definitely set to do the same.

With fabulous stocking lots of gorgeous bracelets, what’s different about Story?

There are lots of reasons to take a look at Story bracelets, because their designs and range of charms are unlike what’s gone before. I think the biggest reason is that they are so versatile; you can pick your favourite charms, wear them on the onyx bracelet for evening and swap them to a leather bracelet for day time, and both will look as stunning as the other.

In what way do Story charms differ from others?

The charms are particularly special because they have a clever locking system, which allows the charms to thread on to the bracelets but once they are on they can be arranged so that they do not move around or bunch together. This means that you can create specific designs for your bracelet and rest assured it will look great all through the day!

First of all, the charms which fit on the Story bracelets can create an entirely different look to other charm bracelets available because they all have a modern look to them, be it the owl with the sparkly eyes, or the satin finish heart.

Also, the charms are available in Rhodium plate, as well as Sterling Silver and 18ct Gold plate – at reasonable prices, which means that the looks you can create with your Story charms really are endless and individual to you.

Who do you think the Story bracelets appeal to?

Definitely those fabulous customers who are ready to move on to something else after completing a Pandora, Thomas Sabo or Trollbeads bracelet, especially those who like to rest assured they are wearing the next big thing that not many people are aware of yet.

The designs of the Story bracelets themselves are very fashion-focussed. The current trend for wrap and friendship bracelets is not slowing down, so the single and multi-strand bracelets by Story provide a stylish base on which to add your personal choice of charms. Saying that, the wide choice of bracelets means that they can appeal to many different personalities and requirements.

…..So if you already like Thomas Sabo’s fun take on the traditional design of a charm bracelet, the sophistication of Pandora’s popular charms, and the casual stylishness of the Good Works leather wrap bracelet, you will love the way Story by Kranz and Ziegler combines all these qualities to help you create a fabulous new piece of jewellery!

Currently only available in fabulous stores, the Story by Kranz and Ziegler range will shortly be available online.

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fabulous Student Lock In

Laura, from Bath’s fabulous store, gives us a run down of the city’s Student Lock In last week

On Monday 17th October the students of Bath were treated to a night of mass discounts throughout SouthGate, the new shopping destination in the city, and of course fabulous were there with some fantastic offers too!!

From 7.30 until 10pm the whole of Southgate was cordoned off for students only to take advantage of the discounts, offers, nibbles, drinks and music available. All sorts of stores in SouthGate took part and fabulous was no different. Students came by the hundreds to view the offers and to take advantage of our alcoholic beverages – we made sure we had the students’ favourite – beer!!

The night went really well, it was a great success for all involved, proving what a fabulous asset  SouthGate is toBath and its younger residents. We’re definitely looking forward to the next one!

Don’t worry if you couldn’t make it last week, pop down before the 24th November with your NUS card to take advantage of our bargain offers including:

  • Buy any two ChloBo pieces and receive 25% off the lowest priced piece
  • Buy any Thomas Sabo jewellery and receive a FREE 2012 Thomas Sabo diary
  • Buy any two pieces from Daisy and receive 25% off the lowest priced piece
  • Buy any Nomination starter bracelet and receive a FREE Gold charm, worth £16
  • Buy a Tresor Paris bracelet and receive a FREE pair of earrings, worth £11

Vitalise Midlands Women of the Year Awards

Zoe from the fabulous store in Solihull tells us about the inspirational event!

On Friday 14th we had to set our alarm clocks rather early to make our way to Birmingham’s Hilton Metropole Hotel close to Birmingham Airport in order to attend the Vitalise Midlands Women of the Year Awards. Vitalise is a charity which provides respite care for those with physical disabilities, dementia and Alzheimer’s as well as their carers.  It was the first time we had taken in the event and we weren’t sure what to expect! We took two very heavy suitcases literally bursting at the seams with a selection of our most popular designers including Pandora, Lola Rose and ChloBo, prepared for an interesting day!

We were helped by the friendly staff to the Kings Suite, which was where all the shopping stalls were to be set up, so that the attendees could enjoy a spot of retail therapy before the luncheon and awards ceremony began. We shared the vast room with nine other stallholders whose wares consisted of handbags, hats and gloves, clothes and jewellery as well as two brand new Jaguar convertibles in the centre of the room! Our visual merchandising skills were put to the test as we had limited space and resources to display our fabulous jewellery but we were pleased with the outcome!

As the attendees and nominees began arriving and having a wander around, we saw some familiar faces such as Karen Jones, the editor of Touchbase magazine, Tara Robinson, the Sales and Marketing Director of Mallory Court where we hold our annual Garden Party, Sarah Faulkland from Midlands Today and Joanne Malin from Radio WM. Also we met lots of lovely ladies who shop at our Solihullstore. It’s really nice at an event when people chat to us and are friendly because they know and like shopping with fabulous!

After a couple of hours shopping, the ladies were called to take their seats for the luncheon, and it was time for us to refuel too! The hotel proved quite confusing as it’s so large and is very easy to get lost in! Finally I made it to the lobby restaurant to enjoy my lunch whilst people watching.

This year’s winners were Lucy Shuker (a British wheelchair tennis player, who received the award for Woman of Achievement) and Julie White (the director of D-Drills Ltd, who won the Business Woman of the Year award). At the end of the awards ceremony, I was lucky enough to meet television presenter and guest speaker for the awards, Kirstie Allsop of ‘Location, Location, Location’ fame. She was very accommodating of the crowd of fans that grew around her and I heard her chatting to ladies about the W.I. and Phil Spencer, her co-presenter! Unfortunately she was in a rush to go to another interview so I was able to only have a quick photo with her taken on my phone! Little did I know I was going to get to do a bit of celeb spotting when I got up that day!

 If you would like to learn more about Vitalise please click here.

October Birthstone – Opulent Opal!

“October’s child is born for woe,

And life’s vicissitudes must know,

But lay an opal on her breast,

And hope will lull those woes to rest.”

–  October Birthstone Poem

All About Opals

Opals are deposited at low temperature and can be found in almost any rock types. They are most commonly found in basalt and sandstone. This is the national gemstone of Australia, which produces 97% of the world’s supply. Opals are known for their mystical and sparkling colours, which change in the light.

Did You Know?

  • The word Opal comes from the Latin word “Opalus” which means “a stone”.
  • In the Middle Ages it was thought that if you wrapped an Opal in a fresh bay leaf, it would give you the power of invisibility.
  • It has been believed that Opals relieve pain during childbirth.

Gift Ideas

 Opals are a symbol of good luck and so a brilliant gift for any occasion. They are also the gemstone for both the 14th and 18th Wedding Anniversaries. Due to the variance in colours of Opals, no two Opals are alike. Show someone how you unique and special they are with the perfect gift of Opal Jewellery. See our range of Opal jewellery at fabulous for ideas!

 How to Care for your Opal Jewellery

  • Opals are more delicate, as they are a softer gemstone than Diamonds and Sapphires, and so more likely to get scratched.
  • You should be careful when wearing your Opal jewellery and take it off to do chores like gardening and washing up.
  • Opals should be stored in their own box or soft pouch to prevent them getting scratched when stored.
  • To clean your Opal jewellery, use a mild soapy warm water solution and a soft brush.
  • Rinse the item off with clean water after cleaning.
  • You could also use a soft, damp cloth to clean your jewellery.

 You can read more about Opals at Wikipedia!

October’s Zodiac Sign:

Happy-go- Lucky Libras are often very successful in business and careers! Very fair-minded and affectionate, Libras are very romantic at heart!

Happy Birthday to everyone born in October!

Fabulous Proposals!

Need some inspiration for creating your special moment? You’ve come to the right place!

Top Ten Ways to Propose:

Proposing with an artistic touch

Proposing with an artistic touch

1) Proposing at the spot where you had your first date. What could be more romantic than reminiscing about your first date or first kiss and then dropping to one knee and popping the question?

2) With an artistic touch. If you’re artistically inclined you could integrate something you’ve made into your proposal. For example, if you have woodworking skills, present the ring in a special hand-carved jewellery box that she can cherish forever!

Proposing at sunrise - so romantic!

Proposing at sunrise - so romantic!

3) With a sunset or sunrise. Take a long stroll along a beach at sunset or climb a hilltop to see the sunrise. In a beautiful setting with the just the two of you it will make her feel extra special!

4) With a song. Whether it’s a cheesy karaoke track, or – if you’re musically talented – a song written yourself, no girl can resist a man behind a guitar (or microphone for that matter)!

5) On a Romantic Getaway. Whisk that special someone away for a surprise visit to somewhere she’s always wanted to go. Then as an extra surprise, propose!

The 'cheesy' comic proposal!

The 'cheesy' comic proposal!

6) With Laughter. We once heard a story in which a man’s girlfriend commented that she would love a cheesy marriage proposal. Her boyfriend asked her to marry him in the cheese aisle of their local supermarket… What better way to start than your lives together than with laughter?

7) In Writing. Write “Will You Marry Me” in the snow, or sand. If you have a bigger budget you could even get a plane to carry a banner with the proposal!

Propose in Writing

Propose in Writing

8) Above the Clouds. How better to propose to the one that you love than drifting across the horizon, enjoying the beautiful scenery? Present your girlfriend with her engagement ring while you are hundreds of feet above ground… she’ll love it!

Keep it classic for an unforgettable proposal

Keep it classic for an unforgettable proposal

9) When Visiting a Famous Landmark. Mark your special day by visiting a famous place. Romantic proposals have been carried out on the Eiffel Tower, London Eye and even Stonehenge!

10) At the Perfect Time.Tell your girlfriend you want to make a time capsule together to bury and dig up years into the future. As you’re collecting the items, say it wouldn’t be complete without a picture of the moment you two got engaged! Have a Polaroid camera ready to take a photo right after you give her the ring.

However you plan on proposing, you will want to make it as romantic and memorable as possible! You also need to ensure that you have the perfect engagement ring for your partner. Here at fabulous we have a beautiful collection of engagement and wedding rings to get you inspired. But if you find the idea of proposing with the actual engagement ring daunting, as you are not sure of what style to choose, or you think she would like to be involved in the decision, why not propose with a token ring to show your intention? This shows her you’ve planned the proposal, but that you want her to be involved in choosing the ring and also gives you the chance to create something bespoke together, if you prefer! See our “Marry Me” engagement ring at fabulous!

Popping the question to your boyfriend: Proposing the unconventional way.

Traditionally it’s the man’s job to ask for a woman’s hand in marriage. But if you already know that your relationship is not traditional, or that he’s too nervous to do it himself, here are our fabulous tips to help you to ask HIM!

Tip 1: Think about how he feels

  • Do propose if you think he will be impressed by your grand gesture.
  • Do create a proposal tailored to his personality rather than yours.
  • Don’t be surprised if he is a little taken aback at first or feels you may have stolen his thunder.

Tip 2: Decide on a Symbol

You could ask him to marry you and then suggest that you pick engagement rings together. Or you could buy matching engagement rings to symbolize your engagement. Visit our online wedding boutique, fabulous Forever for ideas! Or you could even forget the traditional ring and instead buy a special gift that you know he’ll love.

Tip 3: Make a Plan

Every good proposal requires advance planning! Remember that this proposal is now about him, not you. While you may have imagined a horse-drawn carriage at the age of 5, he is less likely to share this dream.

Tip 4: Asking the Question!

Tell him why you want to marry him. Blurting out a hurried “Willyoumarryme” will ruin the significance of the moment. You may also want to address why you’re asking him instead of the other way around. “We’ve always had a non-traditional relationship, and I thought this was the best way to enter into marriage,” And no, “I never thought you’d get around to doing this, so I took matters into my own hands” is probably not the right thing to say and may spoil that romantic gesture!

Did you know?

  • 15 percent of proposals occur in December.
  • The engagement ring was introduced by the Romans, following their conversion to Christianity. It is worn on the third finger of the left hand, due to the Greek belief that this particular finger was connected to the heart.
  • Chivalrous gentlemen sent a pair of gloves to their true loves. If the woman wore the gloves to church on Sunday, it signalled her acceptance of his proposal.
  • The term “spooning” was coined by lovesick men of Wales. A suitor carved a spoon of wood and presented it to his beloved. If she wore it around her neck on a ribbon, she returned his love and they were engaged.

Fabulous Proposals! We asked some of you to share your romantic engagement stories:

We went scuba diving on holiday in Rhodes the day after my birthday. We stopped on a sandy bottom to watch stingrays and the ring was put on my finger – Julie Longyear

He had a t-shirt made for my 2-year-old son saying, “will you…” (On the front) “…Marry my daddy?” (On the back) – Rachel

He came back from Afghan and took me out for the day in London. We saw Lion King the Musical and had a three-course meal. Then he popped the question when we reached the top of the London Eye – Colette

We got engaged on the top of Mount Etna in Sicily. We went up a big rock and I came down with the little one! – Nina Buchanan

Instead of waiting for him to ask me, I asked him. I went and picked his ring, booked a meal and hotel and proposed after dinner in front of everyone. I just asked him and he said Yes! – Hannah

He brought me a box of my favourite chocolates and when I opened them he had pushed my ring into a chocolate and then he asked me – Laura Tock

As a joke he said – “I don’t know if I want you to be my girlfriend anymore, how about being my fiancé instead?” – Tommy

He gave me a fiancé birthday card in the pub – Sarah

He took me to New York City and proposed at 6pm on a horse and carriage ride around Central Park – Laura.

In Vegas after a show and dinner (next to a Twizle machine) – Kirsty!