Chinese and Japanese Ancient Clothing

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The Chinese were always a fashionable race and Chinese ancient clothing was largely influenced by all the dynasties which ruled it. The Han Chinese clothing or the Hanfu has the longest history of clothes worn. The Hanfu rules of dressing were followed strictly as a mark of respect for the culture. On the other hand, ancient Japanese clothing kept changing with every dynasty that ruled Japan. Since the Kimono is a national dress, it has always been mistaken for very ancient clothing worn by the Japanese people which is incorrect.

The basic design of the Ancient Chinese clothing Hanfu was largely developed during the Shang Dynasty. The Shang had two basic styles – the Yi which was the coat worn on top and the Shang whichwas the skirt worn beneath it. Buttons on any ancient Chinese clothing was substituted by a Sash. The clothing was in warm tones. The Zhou dynasty in western China varied in the sleeves being narrow as well as broad. The length of the skirt varied from knee length to the ankle and the different sizes and styles created a distinction between the people who wore them. Ancient Chinese clothing used minimal stitching on the garment and the use of embroidery and silk sashes to design the dresses.

Japanese ancient clothing was majorly influenced by Chinese clothing. Vigorous trade between Japan and its continental neighbors brought in Chinese dresses and styles into Japan during the Han Dynasty. The Tang styles and Sui dynasty from China influenced clothing in Japan while it was developing from a collection of loose clans to an Empire. All robes in Japan were to be worn from left to right just like the Chinese. Right to left was considered barbaric in China and the ‘left over right’ became the conventional rule of wearing a Kimono ever since. During the Heian period (894 specifically), Chinese influence began dying out and Chinese characters began being abbreviated in Japanese script. The Heian court was taken to sensitivity of art and subtle beauty and wardrobe became much more detailed. Colors, combinations and fabric textures changed and separated themselves from Chinese influence.

After the Heian period, the Kamakura period saw a number of clashes and war clans within Japan. The ancient Japanese clothing soon underwent another change and now clothes became more functional. The number of layers and broad sleeved clothes were shunned for more usable clothing. Soon the imperial land split into a southern and northern court and these people’s lives got influenced by the soft court life. Fights resumed and the gradual decadence is obvious in the elaborate dresses of the period. Women had stopped wearing the Hakama and the robes were lengthened to ankle level. Veils and robes over the head were some strange ways experimented and worn during this time.

Japanese ancient clothing was mainly robes and most of the patterns and designs were religious and auspicious. Dragons were printed with nine yellow dragons and five cloud patterns. These heavily embroidered robes were won by the emperors and were auspicious for the wearer. The Cheongsam was another one piece dress adorned by ancient Chinese women. It had a high neck with a closed collar and short or medium sleeves. Buttoned on sides with a fitted waist, it had slits going up from the sides and complemented their figures.

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Source by Christopher Schwebius

Is Criticism A Good Thing?

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It always seems like in whatever you do, people will always have something to tell you. There are times that they will admire you and there are times that they will criticize you. People are quick to say words that won’t be encouraging, instead belittling to the receiving end. It is what we call, “responding to stimuli”. We, humans react to whatever we hear, see or feel. If we find something unusual or wrong with anyone or anything, we naturally make our criticism or judgement.

Wikipedia defines criticism as the practice of judging the merits and faults of something (or somebody) in an intelligible (or articulate) way.

Criticism is based on someone’s perception and observation. It could be both positive and negative. It is positive if the person giving comments or judgements is focused on someone’s strengths and gives words of encouragement and motivation. It becomes negative if the critic is hurting the other person’s feelings by giving insensitive comments or just simply telling the truth. The real definition of criticism depends on how someone gives it and how someone (being criticized) takes it. Criticism can be destructive or constructive. It hurts us and can destroy us if we only expect the merits from what we have said or done. On the other hand, criticism motivates and encourages us to be more careful with our actions and use it to make us become better individuals.

Nobody is perfect, indeed. No one can ever be perfect. Only a fool would think that he is perfect. Although, there is perfect timing. A perfect timing at a situation or at a person’s mood. For example, it will be so kind of you to comfort a friend that you haven’t talked in a while when one of his or her family members is in a very difficult situation – a matter of life and death. It would be great if you could offer food, shelter or money to a person who critically needs it. We become generous and kind to our fellowmen when we know where they’re coming from. Instead of criticizing, we choose to help them because we know exactly what they’re going through. You may not believe in God but I would like to share this verse from the bible when Apostle Paul preached to the Galatians.

Galatians 5:22-23

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

Why do we criticize one another?

People criticize others mainly because of misunderstanding, disrespect, insecurity and pride. All of us living in this world are guilty of judging anyone or anything that is beyond what we usually witness in our daily lives. We even criticize our parents, siblings, friends and everyone around us. Sometimes we also criticize popular people, albeit they have a pleasant personality, do good things and help the community. (a)That is because we don’t understand them at times. It is human nature that we complain about anyone or anything that doesn’t suit the situation. (b)You can’t appreciate someone’s success or accomplishments because you are blinded by your disrespect to that specific person. You don’t have an open mind on what a person can accomplish in his life. Instead of admiring, you discredit him. (c)You don’t want to appreciate other people’s ability, skills and talent and you’d rather rebuke them only because it hurts your ego and pride. You look down on someone and when that person has done something excellent, you still won’t recognize it. No matter what the person has proven not only to himself but also to the society.

It doesn’t happen all the time that our judgement or criticism is true and correct. Sometimes we just base our criticism on our feelings toward someone and anything that the person possesses that doesn’t impress us. Anytime you notice that a person’s behavior is unacceptable and annoying to you, you judge him immediately. Without having any sense of consideration, you assume that their way is wrong and yours is right, whereas you can just try to understand them in the first place, give them respect, forget about pride and throw away any insecurity. Most of the time, the word “criticism” gets abused and its meaning changes into something appalling. It becomes a result of a person’s pessimism towards things.

Here is a quote from Mahatma Gandhi for us to ponder on: “Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.”

Who do we criticize in our environment?

Whoever you are, whichever walk of life you come from, you deal with criticism every hour in every day of your life. From our government to show business, sport industry, religions and churches, school, office and our home: it is ubiquitous. We breathe it and live with it. But let’s not go any further, let’s focus on the most powerful thing in the world – the internet, which apparently powers social media.

The following are based on real-life situations:

1. There are a few people who frequently post selfies (self-portrait photograph) that are not quite aesthetically pleasant – usually with the caption, “I’m so haggard”, “I’m fat”, “Oh, my eye bags!”

2. One guy complains about anything that he sees in his surroundings. He posts them on Facebook and Instagram and feel proud about it, saying he is just being true to himself – either you hate him or like him.

3. A friend of ours talks about special things in her fancy life that seems to be more about fantasy.

4. Some guys post much of their activities and interests (fitness and sports) on their social media accounts showing off their bodies and their physical abilities.

5. There are some people who constantly post their new shoes, bags, watches and the places (especially restaurants) they go to.

If you can think of anything else, feel free to add it on the list. It’s your call. Choose which ones deserve criticism and which ones don’t. Weigh things up, think if somebody needs to stop a bad habit, if they’re beyond normal or you may just be annoyed because something hurts your ego. Either we think comprehensively before speaking or simply making comments, anybody or anything that deserves admiration or compliments should get it. As well as the ones that deserve assessment should. We are all entitled to our opinion. But another thing to consider is that when someone is careful enough of their actions, he or she would always be ready to listen to any criticism and would always take it positively.

We can never change nature. Us, wanting to cross out the word criticism in our vocabulary is like wishing for the night to never come at all. It is part of our lives, we have to embrace it, learn from it and make it a driving force to continually mold us into a better person each passing day. And as I end here, I’ll leave you with these questions: With your experiences in life, how do you find criticism? How do you deal with it? Do you have an open mind for any negative feedback? What are you willing to do to change your bad attitude?

Regarding the topic, I am apparently expecting criticism and will end with these words:

“I write from my soul. This is the reason that critics don’t hurt me, because it is me. If it was not me, if I was pretending to be someone else, then this could unbalance my world, but I know who I am.” – Paulo Coelho

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Source by Art Forrosuelo

Translation of Tattoos and Body Art – Make Sure You're Not Free of Charge!

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Foreign language tattoos that include authentic and exotic characters can form a beautiful design with a substantial, individual and personal meaning. But unless you get your tattoo professionally translated, you may end up with a permanent embarrassment on your skin. To help you avoid a tattoo disaster, here are some tips you should consider when choosing a tattoo in Hindi, Arabic, Hebrew, Japanese, Chinese, or any other language you're not familiar with:

Whatever you do, do not use an on-line machine translator to get your tattoo translated. The results can be extremely embarrassing, like having "sanitation" tattooed instead of "purity"!

Explain fully to your translator what you want your tattoo to say and provide them with a description and context to work within. Remember that there is no such thing as word for word translation. A professional translator will ensure the meaning of your word is translated accurately and approbably. Do not rely on friends who claim to be fully conversant with another language. Even someone who is bilingual may not be able to translate accurately.

If you see your tattoo as a form of self-expression, make sure you understand what it means, otherwise the whole exercise becomes rather pointless.

Ensure that your design is not misaligned, mirrored or applied upside down – a mistake often made by tattooists who do not understand the characters they are working with. Make sure with images you understand what meaning lies within. For example animals represent different emotions and histories whereas numbers represent luck – 88 for example is a lucky number in Vietnam while it also represents an elite squadron of Hitler's army.

Still not convinced? Here is an example of what can and did go wrong:

A woman wanted a Chinese tattoo so she went to her local take away shop and asked one of the staff to translate the word "free" into Chinese. He wrote it out for her and she took the design to a tattoo artist. Unfortunately, just like in English and many other languages, the word "free" has a double meaning in Chinese. It can mean freedom, or it can mean free of charge. You can guess which version the waiter translated into Chinese!

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Source by Eva Hussain

Watercolor Painting – Benefits and Drawbacks of Watercolor Painting

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The most rudimentary form of painting with the brushes could be related to watercolor painting, as it is the primary step in the painting field, to get accustomed with the colors and the strokes of the brushes. This form of work is mostly found effective, to a great extent, considering the fact that it allows you to learn the strokes with a paint brush, before proceeding onto more daunting techniques. At the same time you also get the rough idea of mixing the paints, to get the desired effect. On discussing about this art we come across several aspects, which can be debated upon or could be put aside as the shortcomings or benefits of the art.

Several positive aspects

Watercolor paintings are an easy art, as far as the painting techniques with the paint brushes are concerned. The necessary ingredients required for watercolor painting could be easily available in the market, along with the water that is in free flow in every home. The watercolors are generally watering soluble pigments, which can be easily affordable by the individuals, and the water to dissolve the pigment is available at the workplace and even at home.  

All this makes the technique of watercolor painting so popular among the younger learners, who seek to get a good grasp on the painting techniques. Even the application of colors and the movement of strokes could be very well mastered, through the watercolor painting. It is much easier process than the others and allows us to feel free to experiment with the colors, as they are within affordable limits.

Some of the negative effects

Although, people say that the watercolor painting technique is a very easy process and saves a lot of money, they forget to consider the after effects of the watercolor painting. There are several disadvantages of maintaining a watercolor painting due to several reasons, like problem with pigmentation, colors being water soluble and few others. You might have noted that watercolor paintings are mostly done on paper, varying between several qualities, which tend to turn yellow after quite a few years.

Moreover, the watercolors being soluble with water are prone to water damage in the long run, where the entire painting might be ruined. Preservation for a watercolor painting can be really difficult considering these aspects, as you never know when some accidents might lead to contamination of water over the painting, dissolving the paint and ruining it.

When we take up the aspects of the pigments present with the paper texture, we do not wonder about the bonding of the pigments with the texture. For this reason, when the pigments seem to come off the paper and the painting seems to get dull over the days, you feel astonished at the incident, causing us further trouble to restore it.

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Source by Murtaza Habib

Everything You Need to Know About Router Bits

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A router bit is a cutting tool used with a router to rout out (or hollow out) spaces in the surface of a generally hard workpiece. Although routers and router bits are more commonly used in woodworking applications like cabinetry and carpentry, these cutting tools can also perform in metals, plastics and various other materials. Essentially, though, these cutters are used to create joinery aids (like a dovetail joint) or to embellish work pieces with decorative or ornate effects (like formed edges, intricate inlays or surface work). With the right router bit, users can cut, trim, and shape workpieces with staggering versatility; these bits are available in numerous profiles and can be custom fabricated to create virtually any profile conceivable.


Of course, there are many different types of router bit and although they all serve the same general purpose, they each do different things and achieve different results. A good router bit, though, should be sharp, should retain its sharp edge, and should be well balanced; this produces a bit that will last longer and will “chatter” or vibrate less during use. Conversely, bits of lesser quality tend to wear faster, chip easier, and chatter more aggressively. The following, then, is a basic breakdown of how router bits are most commonly categorized and their respective routing applications.

Cutter Type:

For the most part, router bits can be divided into three major types: fluted cutters, profile cutters and helical cutters. Fluted cutters are used for edging and trimming, profile cutters are used for trimming and shaping, and helical cutters, while mostly used in more easily machined (softer) materials, are designed for trimming, shaping and drilling. Of course, within these three groups, bits can be (and are) more specifically categorized – this will be reflected in greater detail below.


Similarly, drill bits are usually fabricated with one of three compositions: solid high-speed steel (HSS), carbide tips, or solid carbide. HSS bits are the least expensive; they dull more quickly and, accordingly, are used primarily to trim laminate or for work in softer workpieces. Carbide tipped bits are the most universal bit type as they are more durable and perform (at least) reasonably well in all applications. Of course, these are more expensive than HSS bits, but they are equip to manage harder materials and they retain their sharp edges for longer periods. Solid carbide bits, as one would assume, are the most expensive and highest-performing bit type. While some might argue that their solid carbide construction is superfluous, they are durable and deliver beautiful results. Because of their cost, though, solid carbide bits are generally used by only the most practiced woodworkers.

Router bits can also be classified as edge bits, non-edge bits, or anti-kickback bits. Edge bits include a small wheel bearing which acts as a fence against each workpiece; these wheel bearings can be changed to alter the diameter of the cutting edge. Non-edge bits do not have this wheel bearing and therefore a fence (either attached to the workpiece, the router itself or to the router table) must be used with these bits. Anti-kickback bits, on another hand, feature non-cutting material surrounding the bit’s “shoulders.” This additional girth around the bit limits the material feed rate which, in turn, protects the workpiece from over-eager bit progress. This reduces the risk of kickback which occurs when a bit bites and catches the material it’s cutting. This is usually the result of material feeding too quickly. The girth of ant-kickback bits also allows the bit to stay cooler which reduces the likelihood of burnishing and allows the bit to better retain its sharpness.


Router bits are also differentiated by the diameter of their shank or the portion of the bit that fits into the router collet. Shank sizes commonly range from about 1/2″ to about 3/8.” Although 1/2″ shank bits are typically more expensive, they are also the most popular as the thickness of their shank lends durability (in their stiffness) and also less vibration during use. Bits of a smaller shank diameter tend to be less durable and more chattery. Altogether, a 1/2″ shank bit will usually deliver the smoothest cuts and due to their greater rigidity, many larger profile bits are only available with this 1/2″ shank. Similarly, some smaller or more specialized bits are only available with a 1/4″ shank.

The shank of a router bit and a router collet must have the same diameter to be used together. Of course, collets of different diameters are available for purchase and are frequently included with the router itself. Adapters may also be purchased to help different bit shank sizes fit more comfortably.


In order to cut, trim, and shape efficiently, router bits spin at very high speeds (ranging from approximately 8,000 RPM to 30,000 RPM). Because router bits are shaped and sized differently, though, all router bits can not / should not spin at the same speeds. For example, because larger bits have more girth and weight spinning about, they also have a much greater potential to vibrate or be, in some other capacity, out of control. Larger bits, then, should be used at lower speeds. Similarly, bits that spin too slowly can burnish and damage your materials. Accordingly, manufacturer guidelines should always be reviewed and implemented before engaging a bit.

Although, as a generality, faster speeds are more advantageous while working with router bits (they ordinarily yield a much smoother cut), speed isn’t the only factor that contributes to the quality of your cutting results. The sharpness and composition of any given bit, the material being cut, the type of router being used, feed rate, and various other factors play into the results produced by your bits. Accordingly, it will behoove you to run bits at appropriate speeds before assuming the faster you spin them the smoother your results will be.


As aforementioned, there are numerous bit designs and, according to that profile, each bit has a different specialization. The following, then, briefly sums-up (in alphabetical order) the most common bit types and the things those bits do best.

Ball End Router Bits:

As the name indicates, ball end bits have a ball or sphere shaped formation at their bottom which routs out channels for pipes and cables.

Bullnose Router Bits:

Bullnose bits are designed to create a (convex) rounded edge on the front edge of a workpiece.

Chamfering Router Bits:

Chamfering bits produce a clean angled bevel cut. These are commonly used in joinery for concealed joints and beveled edges in constructions with multiple sides. Chamfer bits are also used to create a decorative (albeit plain) angled edge.

Combination Router Bits:

Combination bits are primarily used in trimming to trim softer materials and, particularly, veneers.

Core Box or Round Nose Router Bits:

Core box or round nose bits produce a half-round groove or a groove or cove with a rounded bottom. They are commonly used for fluting and reeding.

Corner Round Router Bits:

Corner round bits are designed to create a rounded corner on a workpiece (usually furniture).

Drawer Lip Router Bits:

Drawer lip bits are used to create the acting pull-handle on the fronts of pull-handle drawers and cabinets.

Edge Forming Router Bits:

Edge forming bits (like an edge beading bit) are used primarily to create a decorative edge on a workpiece. These bits often include a pilot bearing for guidance and are ordinarily used to create a final decorative feature. Because these bits are almost singularly used for embellishment and can take-on virtually any profile conceivable, there are many different types available. To name a few of the most common edge forming bit types, one will commonly encounter edge beading bits, cove bits, ogee (or Roman ogee) bits and round over bits.

– Bead and Double Bead Router Bits:

Bead bits create a decorative quarter-round convex profile. Double bead bits so this twice with one quarter-round running directly below the other.

– Cove Router Bits:

Cove bits are used to create a concave (or indented) quarter-round into the edge of a material.

– Edge Beading Router Bits:

Edge beading bits are used to cut decorative half-round profiles called “beads” into the edge or corner of a workpiece. This edge typically features a small lip or fillet at the top and bottom of the convex half-circle cut.

– Ogee Router Bits:

Ogee bits have an “S” shaped profile and produce an “S” shaped edge on a workpiece. These decorative edges have one convex hump and one concave cove (like an “S”) and usually have a small fillet at the top and bottom of the cut. This delivers a more traditional or “antique” finish.

– Round Over Router Bits:

Round over bits produce a perfectly rounded edge on a workpiece. These are commonly used in cabinet and furniture making.

Finger Grip Router Bits:

Finger grip bits shape the drawer pull handles on the front edges of some drawers and cabinets.

Flush Trim Router Bits:

As the name implies, flush trim router bits are used to trim the edge of one material to be flush with the edge of another material. They are often used to flush veneers or to produce identical shapes in multiple workpieces. These bits are used with a pilot bearing that may be positioned at the top of the bit or at the base of the cutting edge.

Fluting Router Bits:

Fluting bits are used to carve flutes (or a concave profile) into a workpiece (usually molding).

Joinery Router Bits:

Joinery bits are used to produce a specialized type of groove for a precision joint. These, then, are used in virtually all types of construction where one workpiece must be joined to another. The most popular joinery bits are dovetail bits, drawer lock bits, finger joint bits, lock miter bits and tongue-and-groove bits.

– Dovetail Router Bits:

Dovetail bits are used to create a strong joint between materials and are ordinarily used in cabinetry, frames and shelving. They are available in a huge variety of angles and involve carving interlocking mortises and tenons (usually fan-shaped) into an adjoining workpiece.

– Drawer Lock Router Bits:

Drawer lock bits are designed specifically for the joining of perpendicular pieces (like the joining of drawer sides to drawer fronts) and should always be used with a router table. They create a wedge-shaped tenon.

– Finger Joint Router Bits:

Finger joint bits have a series of thin horizontal cutters that protrude from the bit (like fingers). When this profile is cut into two separate pieces, the grooves/extensions interlock to create a strong end or edge joint with a greater gluing surface area. Some finger joint bits feature adjustable cutters.

– Lock Miter Router Bits:

Lock miter bits have a reputation for being difficult to use but create durable and (when used properly) perfectly aligned miter joints with a large surface area for gluing.

– Tongue-and-Groove Router Bits:

Tongue-and-groove bits are used in pairs to create a tongue-and-groove joint in a workpiece. This joins workpieces together edge-to-edge (where one piece has a thin, deep ridge (tongue) and the other has a slot (groove); these pieces are pushed tightly together to form the joint).

Keyhole Router Bits or Keyhole Slotters:

Keyhole bits are used to cut the keyhole shaped slots found on the backs of hanging workpieces like picture frames. These slots, of course, aide in the hanging of these pieces.

Molding Router Bits:

Molding bits are used to create complex ornamental profiles in architectural and furniture moldings and are usually much larger than a typical edge forming bit. They can incorporate multiple profiles onto one bit and produce ornate edging for molding pieces. As these bits are more substantial, they are almost always used with a router table.

Mortise Router Bits:

Mortise bits are used to carve mortises (or square shaped slots). These are used for joinery and for carving spaces for hardware such as hinges and lock sets.

Rabbeting Router Bit:

Rabbeting bits are used to create rabbets or notches in the edge of a material. These cuts/notches are vertically and horizontally straight and create a step shaped profile. Rabbeting bits utilize a pilot bearing which is positioned at the top of the bit and guides it along the edge of a workpiece. Using pilot bearings of different diameters allows one rabbeting bit to produce cuts (rabbets) in multiple sizes.

Raised Panel Router Bit:

Raised panel bits are available in both vertical and horizontal configurations and are typically used (with a stile and rail bit – see below) to create profiled, decorative edges on a panel (i.e doors). Horizontal raised panel bits cut profiles while the panel being cut is flat (horizontal) on a work table. Vertical raised panel bits cut profiles into a panel while said panel is on its edge, and, because their radius is much smaller, are usually considered safer and simpler to operate.

Spiral Router Bits:

Spiral router bits are designed quite like a spiral drill bit with flutes ground around the body of the bit to form a sharp spiral profile. They are available in up-cut and down-cut configurations and, while ideal for plunge cutting, they are also used for edge forming, cutting, and trimming in a variety of materials.

Stile and Rail Router Bits:

In frame and panel construction, stile and rail bits are designed to create ornamental edges and panel slots in the edge of a workpiece (most commonly in raised panel doors and custom cabinets). These ordinarily come in sets of two matched bits but are also available singularly.

Straight Router Bits:

Straight bits come in a variety of cutting diameters and are designed to make straight cuts into a material to hollow-out an area or to produce a grove or dado in a workpiece (usually for a mortise or inlay). Straight bits are very common and may also be used for dado joining and for general material cutting.

V-Groove Router Bits:

V-groove bits are used to carve a “V” shaped groove into a workpiece. While ideal for miter folds, these bits are commonly used in lettering and sign-making.

Veining Router Bits:

Veining bits are designed to create decorative cut-in designs. They are commonly used for free-hand work and lettering.


To conclude this journey through router bit basics, the following are a few tips to help you optimize your router bits and your experience with them.

First, you should always store your router bits separately from one another (perhaps even in their own individual cubbies). Because router bits are both heavy and fragile, you want to minimize their contact with anything they are not presently cutting. Don’t allow your bits to roll about bumping and knocking into other objects under which circumstance they will most certainly chip.

Second, keep your router bits sharp. Dull bits can damage your materials and will produce generally poor cuts. Like many other cutters, router bits can be sharpened to keep their edge.

Third, be cautious of how you handle your router. Both forcing a bit and moving one too slowly can cause overheating in both the bit and the router. An overheated bit can damage workpieces and can lose temper (which diminishes the integrity of the bit) and an overheated tool can result in internal and sometime irreparable damage. The sound your tool makes as you cut is usually a fairly good indicator of whether or not you are properly paced.

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Source by Mallory Kramer

Wooden Frames Versus Aluminum Frames For Silkscreen Printing

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Silkscreens are available usually made of wood or aluminum – how to chose? and whats the difference?

For beginners, hobbyists and doing simple prints, the wooden frames are ideal, mainly due to their inexpensive price. Any wood silkscreens I have purchased have not cost anything more than £ 20.00, and have done a great job.

Problems though can occur with wooden frames when they can warp due to regular dipping in a water tank or wash out sink when removing either ink, emulsion or both. I have found the wood can take a while to dry. There is also the problem due to continued use of the screen the mesh fabric becoming worn down and loosing on the frame, causing the frame not to register as good as it used to when newer. This makes the screens unusable for multicoloured prints as the tighter the screen mesh the better the screen will register or line up for multicolour prints.

If you want a longer repeating frame, if you become more serious about printing, or you are finding that your wooden ones due to continued dipping in water are becoming warped then aluminum may be the way to go. These can be more expensive, but they will not warp and can also be stretched and re-stretched many times. The mesh and glue are simply removed from the frame using a professional tool that does not do any damage to the aluminum. Once cleaned, the frames can then be re-stretched which will give you the ability to use the same frame for a very long time. Aluminum frames are also light weight which has an added bonus of being easy to handle and shipping when purchasing is fairly cheap.

So if you are just starting off, then try a wooden frame and do not invest too much cash, if you get the silk screening bug, (which lots of people seem to) then invest in some good quality aluminum silk screens, they will last you years and continue to give you great results even when you progress to more complex multicoloured designs and prints.

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Source by B Johnston

Interior Decorating Ideas – Decorating Your Clinic with Wall Art

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Have you ever been at the clinic, waiting for your turn to see the doctor, and all you see on the walls around you are posters on cancer prevention, reminders for you to do your annual medical checkups, dealing with rheumatism in old age, diabetes … the list goes on.

All around us, we're flooded with uncomfortable images and messages that remind us that we really need to take good care of our health. Although these posters are there for a reason – to inform and educate, they certainly add an unwelcome addition because they inject an element of fear into all of us. Here we are, waiting to see the doctor, worried sick that that illness could get worse, and all we see in front of us are images and information about illnesses and disease. We really do not need these at this time. Tell us these things when we're well, not when we're sick.

Having been a patient myself (and who has not), the waiting area at the doctor's office is quite a stressful place to be. As you're waiting for your turn to see the doctor, your mind is full of apprehension and uncertainty as to what the diagnosis might be. The last thing you want is to be bombarded with images and media detailing out a plethora of possible ailments you could have diagnosed with. It just adds to the stress.

Strip this entire media off the walls, I say. Remove every shred of evidence that this place is a clinic. Patients do not need reminders as to why they're there. Put in its place decorative art work. Surround the walls with art and beauty. Put some framed pictures on the assistant's counter top. Having a beautiful piece of art to look at will certainly make your wait a lot more pleasant and take your thoughts away from all things unpleasant. Art may also accelerate the healing process. This is the reason why some hospitals have beautiful art hung on its walls. This is what the patient really needs.

What kind of art to display, you might ask. Well, apart from movie or music posters, because they hardly seem appropriate, almost any other kind of art will do. A good choice would be abstract art. Pick something that has soft, pastel colors that calms the mind when looked upon. Abstract, or contemporary art, does not represent anything in its true form, but rather it is an abstract representation of it. Much of it is left for the user to interpret what it's all about. This will certainly keep the patients busy as they wait their turn. Abstract art will give the place a nice contemporary feel and make it seem less like a clinic and more like an art gallery.

There are many choices of abstract art to choose from. Prints of abstract flowers will add a nice, warm touch to the office. What about black and white abstracts? This will create an interesting contrast with the colors around it. You could also display abstract art of other genres, like collages, geometric abstracts, abstract landscapes and abstract figures, among others. The choices are plentiful. If you're not into contemporary art, why not use pictures of animals? A picture of a cute kitten or puppy can do wonders to encourage healing and comfort. If you can not keep a real pet in the doctor's office, then display a picture of one. The effect may not be the same, but it certainly is nice to look at and takes a great deal of stress off the patient.

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Source by Edwin Mah

6 Most Creative Housewarming Gift Ideas for Art and Music Lovers

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If you have a friend who sees art and hears music in everything, you would probably know what it’s like to receive a creative housewarming gift. More often than not, they are handmade, down to earth and most importantly, they are out of the ordinary. In simple words, they are simple, thoughtful and straight from the heart. So, when the time comes to return the favour, it only makes sense to do the same for the art and music lovers. So what if your mind does not bend creatively as much as theirs, shopping for gifts for art and music lovers can fun. All you need is an insight into what ‘wows’ them and the right place to look for gift ideas.


Every artist and musician appreciate an elaborate book on their field of art and its old and contemporary techniques. This is why they make amazing gifts for all occasions. Since housewarming is a great opportunity to present decorative items to the recipients, coffee table books are something you can consider. Not only they add a classy touch to the coffee table, enjoying reading while sipping a hot beverage always feels nice. However, it is up to you and the budget you have decided for the gift, whether you should buy an expensive coffee table book. In case, you want to please your friend, but in a less expensive way, look for hardbound or paperback copies of books they would enjoy.

Music Collection

For a music-loving friend, there is nothing greater a gift than the gift of music itself. He or she would probably have a vast taste in music, wider than what is commonly heard. Different genres, different languages, different temperaments, your musician friend might have an inclination towards it all. You can compile his or her kind of music on an MP3 along with the songs you enjoy listening together so that he or she thinks of you while listening to it. You can even give them a music gift basket comprising of music DVDs of famous musicians from all over the world from various genres.

Wall Hanging Gifts

They make ideal housewarming gifts. Please the friend or loved one, who has recently bought or shifted to a new home, with a charming wall décor. You can spend a good amount of money on a ready made wall hanging. However, your friend would appreciate handmade décor made of jazzy embellishments and craft items. Take Do It Yourself crafts lessons online and create something wonderful depending on the theme of their interior décor.

Picture Frame

A lovely picture frame brightens up the place the moment it is displayed. These days, picture frames are available in a variety of materials. Wood and metal being the most favourite of all material, are often preferred with engravings. Make the picture frame more special as a gift by framing a painting replica of their favourite artist or someone they idolize in it. You can even frame a long forgotten picture of the two of you to bring back the memory of the good old times.


The best thing about giving tapestry as a gift is that, you can make one yourself and the effort that you have put in it truly shows in the intricacies. However, Do It Yourself tapestry costs more patience than it costs money. So, go ahead with it only if you think you have what it takes.

Metal Art

Metal sculptures enhance the home and garden with their elegance and rustic appearance. Wrought iron artefacts, brass figurines, copper decorative pieces look amazing in various settings and under all kinds of lightings. Besides, the more they age, the better the metal art appears that too in an effortless way. Make sure you do not pick the first thing you see in the market. Put some thought into it while making your selection.

It is wise to have a set budget in order to shop the best comfortably. However, if you have a tendency to go overboard you must buy gifts online. The best quality products are priced reasonably, asides being available in a wide variety.

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Source by Iliena Bosu

All About Koi Fish Tattoos

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Koi fish are commonly known as Carp fish everywhere. In Eastern cultures, especially in China and Japan there are many superstitions and myths involving the Koi fish. These tattoos are quite colourful and every colour symbolizes a particular characteristic and has various meanings. It come in various hues including red, blue, yellow, gold, white, black and grey. It has to travel many miles upstream for food and sustenance. One popular myth of the Eastern culture states that if a Koi fish is able to swim upstream of a particular waterfall to reach the highest point known as the Dragon Gate on the Yellow river, it gets transformed into a dragon. This is why they usually represent the strength, determination and perseverance of the fish apart from other virtues.

The legends started in China but the Japanese too embraced the carp fish associating it with many of their legends, fables and stories. These tattoos also symbolize good luck hence are tattooed with other charms associated with luck like cherry blossoms and lotus flowers. They are usually tattooed on in places where they can be viewed easily like arms, legs, torso and shoulders. People of the Eastern world truly believe that this tattoo should be chosen with care and it symbolism should be true to your personality and in harmony with that person’s surrounding.

The design that is tattooed swimming upstream generally symbolizes that the person is currently struggling with something in life. If it is tattooed on running water it courage and ability to persevere in the face of adversity as well as focused and goal oriented. A design that is tattooed swimming downstream represents that the person has overcome his/ her struggle. It can also be depicted as love for someone of the opposite sex, wealth and prosperity, family and fearlessness. Usually these tattoos are done on a large scale and are big.

A red Koi fish represents love, strength, masculinity, bravery and energy. It is believed to be the strongest and can swim against strong currents. A blue one represents masculinity and fertility as well. Five golden Koi fish means wealth and prosperity as well as good luck. A black one represents success after a change and is usually associated with the fish that gets transformed into a dragon. A dragon Koi fish represent overcoming all the obstacles and reaching your goal. It is usually tattooed on to represent a new chapter in life or rebirth.

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Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

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Source by Marvick Zack

Reduce Stress and Prevent Burnout With the 3 R’s – Review, Regroup, Renew!

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The 3 R’s: Review, Regroup, Renew!

It is a privilege to be a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, and employee. These roles, however, should not replace the role of individual. Many of us are pressured to make the most of our time each day. When we do have time to ourselves, we usually fill it with errands-housecleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, banking, etc. Our spouse, kids, parents, siblings, friends, and boss all take a piece of our day, but when was the last time you took time for you?

It’s important for individuals to practice the three R’s: review, regroup and renew! Eking out a few moments just for you is critical in order to maintain energy for the millions of things you do everyday. Stress is cumulative. Without relief, it will build upon itself until you reach the final point of burnout. But you can stop this progression, and even reverse it, by simply taking time out for yourself. Individual “down time” can help you put things in perspective, reduce stress, and prevent burnout. By taking care of yourself, you are better able to take care of others.

You don’t have to schedule a week long vacation in order to have some individual “down time”. Let’s face it, family vacation is the antithesis of “down time”.

Here are a few things you can do to rejuvenate and enjoy some “down time”:

Do absolutely NOTHING

One of my favorite songs is “Enjoy the Silence” by Depeche Mode. Kick off your shoes, sit in your favorite chair, relax your muscles and just breathe.

Get a massage or a facial

Get that kink out of your back and shoulders with a massage or relax with a soothing facial at the local spa.

Go on a “self” retreat

If you need to get away, but only have a day, fill the gas tank, grab a map and drive to a cozy little town or hop on the ferry for a day trip to a local island.

Make a date with yourself

Treat yourself to a gourmet meal for one at your favorite upscale restaurant. Chew slowly and savor every bite.

Take an art, dance, singing or music class

While signing your children up for classes, sign yourself up as well. Many programs offer separate classes for children and adults at the same time.

Cruise an art gallery or museum

Soak up the energy and appreciation of your fellow man’s creative genius. Many museums and galleries offer free or discount days every month which will allow you to enjoy “down time” for little or nothing.


My good friend, playwright Sheritha Bowman, has many different roles. As a wife and mother, she’s the cook, chauffeur, doctor, lawyer, teacher, and occasional referee for her three outspoken kids. During her “down time”, Sheritha is busy writing, rehearsing, and directing her stage plays; she’s also working on a novel. As we all do, Sheritha also spends a lot of time worrying. One night after a show, Sheritha discovered that she had misplaced her keys. She searched frantically in every nook and cranny she could think of. Feeling a little defeated, Sheritha walked back to her car, only to find the keys in the ignition! Sheritha said two things crossed her mind: she was grateful that her car hadn’t been stolen and she was reminded of the Scripture, “Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?” (Matt. 6:27). After this event, Sheritha decided to have a little “down time” and while the kids were at school, she did something wonderful-nothing. She reviewed the things and situations that caused her worry, she regrouped and put things in perspective and this, in turn, allowed her to renew her energy.

After hearing Sheritha’s story, I was reminded of a quote by Swiss philosopher and poet Henri Frederic Amiel, “So as long as a person is capable of self-renewal, they are a living being.”

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Source by Kimberly Harden