Florence Shopping – A Shopoholic’s Delight

Do you dream of wearing beautiful Italian clothes, jewellery and accessories? Then Florence shopping is definitely for you!

For, Florence comes second-only to Milan in the Italian high-fashion stakes, and the dedicated follower of designer label clothes and leather goods will drool at the mouth on seeing the abundance of such well-known names as Gucci, Ferragamo, and Versace. Not to mention the superb craftsmanship of fine jewellery, art, and antiques.

Maybe your pocket isn’t very deep? Never mind! You’ll be able to bag some wonderful bargains at Florence’s colourful market stalls.

Where To Start?

You’ll want to start by getting to know what’s on offer in the city itself.

Popular with tourists and bargain-hunters is the daily, open-air market of San Lorenzo. Or, check out the New Market, located under the Loggia del Porcellino, or the flea market, which is held near the Piazza Santa Croce on the last Sunday of each month.

Who, visiting Florence, hasn’t heard of the Ponte Vecchio – charming medieval bridge which spans the River Arno. Throughout the ages, it’s always been packed with merchants. Nowadays, its shops are brimming with delightful jewellery, gold, art, and souvenirs. Perfect for buying gifts for loved ones, the only problem is that you may not wish to part with the goods once you’ve bought them.

If you wish to browse designer label shops within Florence, make your way to the Via de’ Tornabuoni, where you’ll discover the likes of Gucci, Versace and Ferragamo. Perhaps you’re after Valentino, Armani or Pucci? Then just pop along to the Via della igna Nuova.

The Mall

Feel you can’t afford designer prices? You could well be mistaken! For, just outside the city – about 30 minutes from Florence – nestling in the beautiful Tuscan hills, is a wonderful, exclusive outlet center called The Mall. What’s more, there are even coach trips that will take you there!

At The Mall, you’ll come across all the top Italian brands at fantastically-reduced prices – often with up to 60% off!

Gucci, Valentino, Armani, Sergio Rossi, Ferragamo, Bottega Veneta… whether you seek stylish clothes, bags, shoes, sunglasses or jewellery, you’ll find a tremendous selection here, and at unbeatable prices. Just remember to allow yourself plenty of time for queuing up to pay for them!

Well, it’s good-bye from me… for I’m off on a trip to The Mall, to spend my hard-earned money on designer bargains, in true Florence shopping style!

Costume Jewellery for the Christmas Party Season

The run up to Christmas is now well and truly under way and the party season is just around the corner. Time to think about getting out that little black number and some killer heals to look drop dead gorgeous for the party season!

These days how you accessorise your outfit is almost as important as the outfit itself. What must have clutch bag will you take, how will you arrange your hair and what make up colours will you choose. To give your outfit the finishing touch many women will want to customise it with some beautiful costume jewellery to add that extra bit of style.

Today’s choice of costume jewellery and hair accessories is mind boggling and for the Christmas season they range from bling, subtle and sparkly, to large colourful statement pieces. There are some lovely examples in the shops right now which countless women will be tempted by and love. The great thing is that you can be as individual as you like and go for something really different if you feel daring enough. Sparkly earrings and necklaces are always popular but also take a look at pearls and glass beads and festive coloured pieces in red, gold or silver too.

Hair accessories are massive all year round these days and range from a simple flower to beautiful diamante bands and slides that can really add a touch of style. Brooches too are now really popular again coming in all shapes and sizes with some now doubling up as hair accessories as well.

I hope that this has wetted your appetite for a different look this year and given you a few ideas on how to stand out from the crowd and get noticed. You work hard all year so why not enjoy the festive party season. Take the opportunity to accessorise your outfit with something a little different to make you feel that little bit special. Above all enjoy and relax and have a little you time as you’re worth it!

For some different beautiful sparkly costume jewellery and accessories at a very competitive price, why not visit one of London’s best value retail suppliers of cheap costume jewellery.

Types of Printed Carrier Bags and Their Uses

If you’re a shop or business looking to buy printed carrier bags, it can be overwhelming the amount of choice you receive. Most can be split into categories based on their material: Printed Paper carrier bags, Polythene Carrier Bags, and Eco-Friendly Carrier Bags, each having their own advantages, disadvantages, and uses that they are most suited for.

  • Printed Paper Carrier Bags

Paper carrier bags are commonly used in the retail business as an alternative to plastic. They are durable and versatile, able to stand up to many different printing techniques. This versatility allows for bags to be completely bespoke and include many different finishes, such as Spot UV, Embossing, Hot Foil, Lamination and, being paper, the ability to be recycled.

Paper carrier bags can be further divided based of paper, type weight and handle type:

Printed Luxury Rope Handle Paper Bags are typically stronger than an average paper bag, with gsm (grams per square meter) ranging from around 170-300gsm. This allows for a strong gusset, giving the bag the ability to stand by itself. They can be printed using a wide range of techniques and finishes. Rope handles are easily attached through punched holes and ribbons can be attached to give the bag an extra special feel. They are well suited to retail, designers, boutiques and fashion & jewellery customers.

Printed Luxury Insert Ribbon Handle Bags contain all the same features as Luxury Rope Handle bags, except here a ribbon is fitted as the handle, giving a high-end feel to the product.

Printed Luxury Closed Handle Satin Paper Bags are manufactured in 170gsm to 250gsm, with a unique way of fastening. Using a Satin ribbon, a flap folds over the top opening and secured, creating an attractive thin fold. They are available with different laminations and finishes, and are perfect for jewellery and other high value items.

Printed Recycled Paper Carrier Bags are similar to Printed Luxury carrier bags, capable of being customised in a wide variety of ways, however here the paper is 100% recycled, giving an eco-friendly shine to your products. Recycled paper is typically thinner than non-recycled. This type of carrier bag will typically be around 100-180gsm.

Printed Paper Twisted Handle Bags don’t have added rope making these machine-made carrier bags are very good value for money. Twisted handles are popular in department stores due to the saved cost and high volumes. With an average weight of around 80-130gsm, and FSC certified, twisted handle carrier bags can be a great way to promote brands.

Printed Flat Handle Paper Bags are perfect for many high street retailers and are often seen in cafes, sandwich shops, card shops, and other quick and easy takeaway situations. They are lightweight and fold perfectly flat, and are cheap to manufacture and print. As the handles are paper, they can also be printed onto.

Printed Die Cut Paper Bags have handle cuts straight into the bag, helping this creates this all-in-one product look clean and simple. This process can be done with a wide variety of thicknesses and sizes, while still retaining the ability to fold flat. Because of their simplicity, they are great for corporate events or high volume stores.

Printed Paper handless Bags are a basic staple of the retail world. Easy to print, use and recycle, they are ideal for many different customers in all kinds of situations. They are lightweight, low bulk and a very cost effective method of promotion a brand, especially useful for food products.

  • Printed Polythene Carrier Bags

Printed Polythene Carrier Bags are the plastics bags you’ll see everywhere in the shopping world. They are extremely durable and waterproof, and can even be made using recyclable materials. They do not offer the variety of finishes that paper can, but can still be printed using full colour and a choice of matte or gloss finishes.

LDPE (Soft) Plastic Carrier Bags can be seen a lot around shopping centres. They are manufactured in different weights measured in Microns. With a slightly more eco-friendly nature than their cousins HDPE Plastic carrier bags, they are a popular choice amongst ethical retailers. Handles can be die-cut, flexi loop or clip close offering a bit of variety, or manufactured with a seal strip to create a mailing bag. They are robust, versatile choice, great for heavier items, clothes or food.

HDPE (Hard) Plastic Carrier Bags are higher density than LDPE carrier bags, giving it a more rigid feel. They are special in the printing process as they allow for off-set printed using up to 8 colours, or perfect picture quality images to be printed onto the bags. Again they offer a variety of handles, including “T-Shirt handles”, creating that classic supermarket bag look, die cut and flexi loop.

  • Printed Eco-Friendly Bags for Life

Printed eco-friendly bags for life are the most durable of the three types. Manufactured using durable materials, they can stand up to the stresses of everyday life and provide long-lasting advertising for any brand.

Printed Cotton Bags are a very popular choice amongst retailers and consumers alike. They are lightweight, soft and reusable. They can be manufactured in many shapes, thicknesses and sizes to suit different needs, as well as suitable for logo or full coverage printing.

Printed Jute Bags are made from naturally occurring fibres, giving the bag much more strength and structure than cotton. They are perfect for heavy items, popular in supermarkets, wine cellars, and other stores. Jute bags can come with different handles, such as rope or woven, and be printed onto.

Printed Polypropylene Carrier Bags can come either woven or non-woven. Woven offers a more uniformed, criss-cross pattern and is slightly stronger than non-woven bags, in which the fibres are arranged randomly. They can be manufactured in a variety of thicknesses, and be printed in full-coverage colour, allowing for creative and eye-catching result while still being reusable and good for the environment.

Find out about Printed Carrier bags and more at Precious Packaging