Spruce equips fashionistas with fresh furnishings and graceful garments in a sleek boutique filled with elegantly designed goods. Invite incandescence into dim corners with Spruce's mixture candles, personalized flame keepers that add a luminous touch to romantic dinners, upscale séances, or nights of illuminated manuscripting ($7.50). Fashion finders discover accessory success with Spruce's everyday jewelry (starting at $10) or engage in some trendy archaeology with chic vintage baubles (starting at $50).
Ortho Mattress has supported sleepers' backs with sturdy coils for more than 50 years, crafting Ortho LFC, Ortho Dr. Preferred and Summerhill & Bischop–brand mattresses in its Los Angeles factory before shipping them direct to customers. An Ortho Dr. Preferred Conform eurotop ($949.99–$1,499.99) cossets slumbering limbs in a 3-inch layer of contouring memory foam undergirded by supportive coils, while a 4.5-inch Ortho LFC smooth top ($199.99–$299.99) is slim enough to tuck into a trundle bed or rollaway. Both models come paired with a box-spring mate so that they'll always have a partner in Yahtzee. Besides in-house brands, Ortho Mattresses' showrooms stock Simmons Beautyrest and Sealy Posturepedic sleep sponges.
An affordable and monumental selection of sofas, beds, desks, and sarcophagi mingle good-naturedly in Ashley Furniture’s wondrous warehouse. A Matrix Accent Chair ($219.99) commands shoppers’ attention with its sleek, contemporary design, and Kira furnishings provide stylish sites for storage, studying, or snoozing. A Sydney Accent Chair ($199.99) or Cubit ottoman set ($99.99) anticipate increasing the comfort of various human inactivities, while the Romy Accent Table Group consists of one cocktail and two end tables, creating a table cartel ruling over a home's Speed Quarters surface needs.
PPG Porter Paints' team has dedicated 90 years to sprucing up homes with its revered brand of vivid, low-odor paints, stains, and primers. Multiple lines and sheens of interior paint offer to protect walls from presidential portraits painted in mustard ($25.79+/gal.). Eco-conscious shoppers can snag gallons of Pure Performance color, designed to thwart mold and mildew without angering Mother Nature's overprotective rottweiler ($33.39+/gal.). Peruse exterior paints if looking to prevent al fresco fortifications from cracking and peeling during super-soaker season ($25.79+/gal.). Effective on most surfaces, Porter's acrylic, synthetic, and alkyd Seal Grip primers also help house-wide paint jobs to stay put ($40+/gal.). Amicable staff members roam each locale's voluminous aisles and are eager to provide product recommendations for any home, office, or abandoned grain silo.
Gabriel's Garden's beauteous bounty of home- and garden-oriented gifts can match your last-minute Mother's Day, or first-minute Earth Day 2011, shopping needs. Stock up on scented goodies such as the eye-catching Vance Kitira pillar candles (from $4.95) or the shea-butter-enriched Pre de Provence soaps ($1.50–$7.95) available in more than 30 fragrances—none of which, thankfully, are "Uncle Leroy's cigars" or "junior-high locker room." For long-term garden glory, plant a batch of Kalalou Botanical's recycled foam stems ($9.95–$27.95), or invite the animal kingdom into your home without even cracking a window with the pale-yellow bee charmer dishes ($2.95–$59.95) with adorable bumbling bee patterns.
If you?re looking for a sleek and versatile skirt with decades of history, you might try on a pencil skirt. Read on to learn more about this hip-hugging garment.
Ever wear an H-line skirt? If that sounds not just unfamiliar but hard to envision, try bending the two vertical lines of the H together at the top. Now play that in reverse and you get, in a gesture, the genesis of the H-line skirt, better known as the pencil skirt.
For this terminology we have to thank the alphabet-obsessed French designer Christian Dior, who, after first popularizing the A-line and then the H-line in the mid-1950s, went on to develop a ?Y-line? silhouette. Whereas the A-line accentuates the tiny waist and full hips of an hourglass figure, the pencil skirt stays narrow from top to bottom to hug whatever kind of curves a woman has?if any. This newly slimmed-down look (an extension of earlier pencil-type skirts of the ?30s and ?40s) was also dubbed the ?French bean? or the ?flat look? in the press.
The pencil skirt tends to stop at or just below the knee, with a vent in its back seam to allow for greater mobility. This wasn?t a concern for one of the garment?s early predecessors. The fad of the 1910s known as the hobble skirt took the shape of the pencil skirt and kept going down to the ankles?where an extremely narrow hem required tiny steps and even caused reports of traffic congestion as women supposedly had to be helped across the street. This was a far cry from the images the pencil skirt would come to evoke: the favored choice of sultry Hitchcock blondes and, today, a staple of professional women?s closets everywhere.