Sunday, January 22, 2012

Behind the Velvet Ropes

It was a lot of fun going to the old movie theaters downtown. Some of them had rotated between being live theaters and cinema theaters. The marble and the gold leaf was a radical change from the plastered walls, stale popcorn smell and dated 70s carpet of the neighborhood haunt. While both theaters had velvet rope to signify the boundaries of a line, it was the difference between the velvet you imagined being cut from a princess' old dress and something fuzzy, flocked and bald. Even the stanchions were solid brass.

It's funny how I thought it was all so elegant, when it was really meant as a form of crowd control. If I really wanted, I could duck under the rope and go where I wanted, which my brother often did, but somehow there was comfort in being directed where to go.

I just wondered why events that were more prestigious had barricades to keep the "rabble" like us away from the stars or away from the nightclub door. All elegance was lost and we are relegated to being the "undesirables." But that just makes people want to go to the event even more, even though you may never see a star bigger than a size of an ant from your vantage point, rather than getting their own personal audience in a quiet theater where you can eat your popcorn in peace.

Buying velvet ropes sure makes guests at a small affair think they are getting the star treatment, and that is who usually appreciate it more.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

NoMoreRack: Straight Foward Deals

There are many sites out there purporting to have daily deals, but often they are mired in a bit of confusion. What started out as simple concepts have snowballed into sites with so many offers that they seem to have become just regular shopping or store sites. The immediacy is gone.

Luckily, has never changed its tune. A person can still visit the site, see the daily deals queued up and make an instant decision whether or not they want to grab a deal that day. The "less is more" approach tends to work on me, as somehow the fewer items to remember, the bigger space they etch in my mind all day. Shipping is cheap too. It's only $2.00 per item.

Recently, I visited NoMoreRack and found a curious sight that I neglected before. The deal farthest to the bottom right was not for sale in exchange for currency, but was noted as a "friendrack" deal. Apparently, if you rack up a number of referrals, you qualify for a free item. Recent "friendrack" items have been a hobo bag, freshwater pearl bracelets and diamond earrings. Currently, 14-17 are needed to cash in on one of the items, and the offer doesn't expire. I have seen items come up for as little as 6 referrals, however. The items change, but you are not under the gun to mercilessly recruit friends under any sort of posted deadline. When you reach a certain number of friends who sign up on your suggestion, you simply redeem a deal when you find something that interests you.

I am recommended sites and businesses to my friends all the time, so it is nice to have an obtainable reward, and also a good Sometimes you'll find friends want you to reach a goal, and will sign up to help if they know you really want something. Kind of like how my relatives new I wanted the chance to win a bike for selling the most candies and cookies in school. What is one more almond cluster going to hurt?

Have you tried NoMoreRack yet? If so, tell me what you thought. If not, what influenced you to hesitate?

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Monday, January 09, 2012

Working on Etsy

Guest post from: Kent Lara

I use my San Antonio wireless internet connection to make money and work from home. I never thought that when people said that they worked from home, that they were actually working and making money. I got inspired by a friend when I heard about a website called that came out in 2005. I have always been interested in sewing and am quite good at it. There are many people that create custom designs for customers through Etsy.

In 2008, I decided that I was fed-up with my desk job. I decided to give sewing a chance. For years I have been collecting vintage sewing patterns. They range from the 1920’s to the early 1990’s. I started posting the vintage patterns Etsy and working with customers to create custom designs. Now, I have a big enough clientele that I literally work from home everyday and communicate with people all over the world from my computer. I have a flexible schedule and I love it! I am also filling my creative need that my nine to five never met!

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Why Vintage? Reason #2

Read "Why Vintage?: Reason I"

Why Vintage: Reason #2 - expanding your circle of influence.

Vintage clothing is a great conversation starter. There are a lot of folks who would barely notice you were wearing a vintage item. They may just think "wow, that guy/gal looks sharp" and not be able to put their finger on it. But once you start wearing vintage and learning about the pieces you own, it opens up a whole new world.

Suddenly you spot a guy wearing a 40s tie - the silhouette and color scheme are unmistakeable to your trained eye. Suddenly, you have something to talk about! You can go up to him and comment on it and walk away with a great new business contact or friend, or at least feel more at ease. It is iffy sometimes to walk up to a man in a modern tie. He may say "thank you," but there is really only so much you can talk about on the subject. Reason being, is a lot of people don't want to "give away" their secrets. They might not want to tell you where they bought it, unless they are from out of town, because they don't want you to go out and buy one just like it. Or they don't want to reveal that they got it from X store because they couldn't afford Y store.
They might not do it deliberately, but some people unconsciously feel that way.

When you ask about someone's vintage tie, you might get a story about how it came to be.