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"In your handbag, lies all your life" so she said!

Don’t you love hearing and reading a success story? Stories about individuals with big dreams that came true with hard work and determination are inspiring and we love to relate to them. Well here’s a story many artists and designers love to hear and read. This is the story of Carla Braccialini who in 1954 sew her first bag and 60 years later, her handbag designs and brand sell all over Europe, Russia, Middle East and Asia!

Braciallini white top handle bag

It is certain situations or incidences in life that stimulate a need to invent, so was the story of Braccialini. That incident where her bag was stolen inspired her to create a bag in the shape of a house and the tagline “In your handbag, lies all your life” was born! She continued to create designs as part of the Temi collection that have inspired and continue to inspire many well-known brands.

Carla didn’t want to just make a bag like many others, but rather create designs filled with fantasy, cheerfulness and unique traits that define the Braccialini name. She invented women's handbags with stories to stimulate emotions and imagination without neglecting elegance and femininity. We all love designers who add their personal touches to their designs because we want to relate and we want to know their personal stories. Braccialini logo is a rose form because Carla loves flowers. Braccialini bags are a reflection of her personal imagination and touch. And for all these reasons she has been also the recipient of the Cavaliere Del Lavoro award, assigned to entrepreneurs for their valuable contribution in their chosen field of profession.

 

 

 

 

 

In the past 60 years, Braccialini was and continues to be one of the most renowned and distinguished Italian leather companies.
 Innovation and technology, continued experimentation for scouting out new routes, a style open to change, yet always faithful to its origins, aware of its values and highly creative. Unwilling to be confused with the masses, every single Braccialini bag contains this and much, much more.

 

Pursed is very pleased to be one of the first Canadian retailers to curate Braccialini. We believe brands like Braccialini reflect our vision and belief in arts, originality, and independent style.

 

The natural skin purification treasure found in Hammam

 

Natural beauty product - skin exfoliateRecently, a friend of mine brought Dzair soap (Black soap) from Algeria. It was the first time I’ve ever heard of this type of soap, which is a sticky paste used to prepare the skin for exfoliation. Initially I thought it contained charcoal powder because of the murky green color. Sounds gross doesn’t it? But after spending some time Googling articles, it turns out that it’s made out of Olives and vegetable soda and it originated in Syria about 3000 years ago. It was called the soap of Aleppo and manufacturing technique arrive a little later in north western Africa such as Morocco and Algeria. This natural beauty soap has different names: Black soap, Beldi or Dzair and is considered the Hammam’s flagship product. It comes in the form of a thick dark paste which when mixed with water becomes creamy. Let me tell you that that my skin never felt this squeaky clean and soft before.

Dzair (Black) soap is made from a mixture of oil and crushed black olives. It is part of beauty products used in the oriental cosmetic tradition and is very often applied in the hammams to prepare the skin for exfoliation.

So how do I use Dzair (Black) soap?

It’s very simple. Before applying the paste, make sure your skin is well moistened by showering in hot water, hot bath or sauna.

With your skin wet, apply a small amount of the paste and massage your body with Dzair (black soap) while avoiding the periphery of the eyes. Leave it on and let your skin soak all the goodness for 10 to 15 minutes.

Natural beauty product - skin exfoliation

Let the scrubbing begin! Using a granular cloth glove or a vegetable sponge (loofah), start scrubbing your skin to get rid of the deepest impurities. You will then see your dead skins forming under the aspect of little black vermicelli.

Rinse it baby.. rinse thoroughly with lukewarm water. The result is breathtaking! Your skin is free of toxins and dead cells, while remaining light and soft.

And what are the benefits of Dzair (Black) soap?

This beauty product is suitable for all skin types. It worked for me as I have a very sensitive skin and psoriasis!

  • It’s 100% natural and rich in regenerating vitamin E
  • It removes all impurities as well as dead skin.
  • It hydrates the skin and makes it smooth
  • It does not irritate the skin and is renowned for its smoothing properties

Can I use it on my face?

Yes you can but do not use exfoliating gloves or loofah on your face. Just rinse your face with warm water. Also be careful to avoid contact with the eyes and the lip.

Where do I store it?

Dzair (Black) soap should be kept cool to prevent drying. Avoid leaving the container open in the bathroom. You can, for example, keep it in your fridge. It will thus retain all its qualities.

 

Natural skin exfoliation product

Where can I find my (Dzair) black soap?

    Sadly the original product is not available in major retail stores in North America. However, there are few options to consider such as checking with your local Moroccan store. A trip to Morocco or Algeria is the perfect option since you get to experience the marvels of an intriguing rich culture.

    I have also found a similar form of this beauty product at L’occitane En Provence. You can order it directly through their website.

     

     

     

     

    March 04, 2017

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    A handbag sparks the birth of a business

    My fondness for Bagghy was born almost 3 years ago on a memorable trip to Venice, Italy. As we were strolling along the narrow and busy calle (allies/streets) we came across Bagghy's signature store: well lit, airy and colorful. I fell in love with every single handbag and was impressed with the uniqueness and quality of the collection. I asked the sales lady to reserve the bag (it was the last piece in store) and I would drop by to buy it later on our way back to mainland. It wasn't a hesitation but rather wanting the convenience of walking around Venice without carrying shopping bags - you know what I mean.

    Feeding pigeons with my little man in the piazza - Venice 2014

     

    On our way back, I realized I forgot the name of the calle while standing in the middle of a piazza surrounded by about 10 calle. At that moment, I realized that the only way to get there is to rely on my visual memory. Luckily enough we found the store and I got my bag.

    Three years have passed and I still take the bag with me to work every single day. I cannot tell you how much abuse the bag has endured. Regardless, it still looks as good as new. Now like most women, I dream of a Hermes bag and would worship my spouse if he surprised me with one, but I am in love with my Bagghy bag, and am extremely satisfied with the quality and practical applications of this brand of handbags. It is the type of love which led me to get into handbag retail business and to no surprise, it is one of the best sellers at Pursed Boutique with loyal followers who cannot get enough of it.

     At Guggenheim Museum Venice..

     

    I am pleased to be the first retailer and exclusive distributor of this emerging brand in Canada. This is a brand that recognizes the value of uniqueness, high quality and affordability. Bagghy offers a wide range of styles suitable for everyone: driven career individuals, creative, trend setters not followers, practical, worldly persons who thrive on challenges and opportunities.

    @ McMichael grounds: because good fashion is art!

    And that's how our story began... never underestimate the power of travel. Sometimes it not only leads you to new destinations, but also to new destinies!

    January 11, 2017

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    Spring into a healthy and relaxing mood!

    When Pantone released the 2017 Spring color report, all one can think of is nature, in its energetic yet relaxing manner ,and the outdoor. Spring is a revival of life, filled with hope, tranquility and freshness and so are this Springs colours. They represent health, relaxation, warmth and energy.. From healthy kale, to Island Paradise, this spring predicts a season of greenery, aqua and flames:

    Kale and Greenery!

    I am so excited to see Green dominate the color chart this Spring in a neutral form or vibrant mode. Green represents freshness and health so are the names of Spring 2017 Greens: Kale and Greenery. 

    Primrose Yellow

    This joyful shades takes us on a journey of enthusiasm, good cheers and lots of warm sunny days.

    Lapis Blue, Island Paradise, Niagara

    As well, blue continues to be a favourite color trend this year in 3 different shades of Island Paradise, Niagara, and Lapis Blue... Ah with such names, how can you not think of a relaxing beach vacation. 

     

    Flame

    Flame is Spring 2017 Orange, a vibrant and gregarious color filled with warmth and great summer days.

    Pink Yarrow

    Pink Yarrow is a festive, and tantalizing color lifting the spirit with its captivating tones. When you are in the tropics enjoying sceneries of green and blue, pink is surely an eye catching color popping on a variety of roses and flowers. 

    Pale Dogwood and Hazelnut

    Neutral colors are quite practical and perfect to transition into a different season. Pale Dogwood is a subtle pink arousing an aura of innocence and purity; while Hazelnut, an unpretentious brings to mind a natural earthiness.

     

    Use discount code: SPRING17 to receive 15% discount on your handbag order*

    * Offer expires: January 31, 2017

    November 20, 2016

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    Happy Birthday pursed.ca

    I cannot believe it has been a year already! Geez you think time flies by but boy it flies even faster when you are starting a small business.. Juggling many balls at the same time is tons of fun and I am lucky none have dropped yet!!

    With a full time corporate job, a loving family, starting a business, networking and promoting my business, having a balanced lifestyle has been tough, and having a
    balanced weight is even tougher. But such is the life of an entrepreneur. It's never easy and this I say on behalf of millions of business owners. One thing I have learned being a small business owner is to appreciate the efforts successful entrepreneurs make. They work hard and let me say it, they deserve respect and salute for their efforts, successes AND failures. 

    Regardless of all the aches, pains and sleepless nights (and bags under my eyes), I am fortunate to have met many new friends with inspiring stories and amazing souls filled with passion and aspiration. The life of an entrepreneur is not just filled with material goals, it truly is a road to self-discovery and an enriching journey filled with new experiences, opportunities, and enlightenment. 

    Pursed celebrates its first birthday and it's now ready to stand and explore the world just like a toddler who just discovered how to walk. So I want to thank you for a memorable year, and for your support and love. I hope this year Pursed will continue to be your destination to everything beautiful.

    Love

    Reena

    Fall/Autumn 2016 Fashion Color Trends

    Ah what a wonderful summer this has been.. at least here in Canada, it's been warm and dry most of the time, almost tropical which is quite uncommon for Canadians. But we know the heat will be over soon and we're moving towards the most beautiful season in Canada, Fall or Autumn, whichever word tickles your fancy. 

    Today's blog will cover the latest trends in color this Fall 2016:

    2016 Fall & 2017 Winter Colors

    If you are familiar with Canadian Fall season, you've already figured out the fashionable colors this Fall. The Fall 2016 Pantone Report is every fashion and interior designer bible. It sets the trend for colors used in furniture, paint and fashion. This Fall the report defined three color segments:

    1. Blue Family reflects our desire for tranquility, strength and optimist
    2. Earth tones are natural transitional colors in the Fall
    3. Exuberant popup of vibrant colors acting as playful complements to Earth tones

    Blue Family include Riverside Blue and Airy Blue.

    It's pretty much Jeans Blue and Icy Blue colors for those who are not able to distinguish between the two.

    New Riverside Pantone Color for Fall 2016 Airy Blue Pantone Color for Fall 2016

    Pursed Boutique currently has a wide selection of Blue toned colors from La Rose De Sim and Bagghy

    Top handle bag genuine leather by Bagghy at Pursed Boutique Large Clutch Hamsa print by La Rose De Sim at Pursed Boutique

    Earth Tones include Sharkskin, Warm Taupe, Potter's Clay

    In simple terms, Sharkskin is pretty much a dark and rich shade of Gray which is suitable for Fall and Winter. Potter's clay reminds me of Terra Cotta color or Pumpkin Orange with Gray hue.

    Sharkskin Pantone 2016 Fall color Warm Taupe Pantone 2016 Fall Fashion colors Potter's Clay Pantone 2016 Fall Fashion Colors

    And here are the current collection of bags which you can wear every Fall

    Large Clutch Bang print by La Rose De Sim at Pursed Boutique Luxury leather top handle bag by SaQue handbag designer at Pursed Boutique 

    Exuberant popup colors include Lush Meadow, Spicy Mustard, Aurora Red and Bodacious

    My personal favourite is Bodacious for I am a sucker for purple. Lush Meadow reminds me of Emerald color perfect on any finger. Truly though, these are uplifting colors and I can't wait to update my wardrobe with few of them.

    Lush Meadow Pantone 2016 Fall Fashion Colors Spicy Mustard Pantone 2016 Fall Fashion Colors Aurora Red Pantone 2016 Fall Fashion Colors Bodacious Pantone 2016 Fall Fashion Colors

    But if you are hesitant to wear these colors, there's always the option of accessories. After all, even if your wardrobe has basic colors, you can still complement your black dress or coat with a vibrant bag!

    Mini Annabella top handle mini bag by Farah Asmar at Pursed Boutique Shoulder bag Ostrich exotic skin by Christine VonBun at Pursed Boutique Crossbody metal chain bag by La Rose De Sim at Pursed Boutique

     

    In the next Blog I will share with you the latest trends in fabric and silhouettes. So make sure to drop by next Sunday and get tips on what to look for in-stores this Fall 2016.

     

    Types of bags you need to own

    Let's admit it, we could never have enough bags and shoes! Surveys even prove it, women on average buy at least 1 handbag per season. Multiply this by 4 seasons over a 5 year period, you probably have (on average) purchased 20 handbags in the past 5 years.

    Well, I'm not here to judge whether this is too much or too little. Handbags are important because we cannot be mobile without basic necessities to carry with us daily. And our needs for handbags change based on lifestyle and stage of life.

    But there are certain types of handbags you'll need to own at all time. Why? because each one serves specific types of functions and occasions.

    Crossbody


    Crossbody Sharon - Farah AsmarI don't need to explain it but you know that crossbody bags are incredibly comfortable to wear. Hands-free shopping, public commuting and event coffee trips. These are the perfect bags to carry when your hands are full. At Pursed Boutique, you will find a large selection of crossbody bags in every shape, style and color.

     

     

     

     

    Day Clutch

    I love carrying these bags when going out for social gatherings, lunch or casual dinner with friends. But mostly you'll just want a casual bag that is easy to grab.

    Weekender

    Weekender handbag - BagghyThis bag isn't just for trips to the cottage or beach, the weekender is a large durable bag you need in your daily life. This bag allows you to stuff most of the items. It could be a grocery bag, a gym bag, and a diaper bag. As well, an elegant functional vacation bag. I absolutely love Bagghy handbags as weekenders because they are made with durable and strong materials and the styles of the bags are inspired by luxury brands like LV and Hermes.

    Evening Clutch

    Evening Clutch - SaQueThey are so pretty and lately they come in a variety of shapes and styles. They are perfect for celebrations like weddings, fundraising events, and galas. Depending on your social obligations, you may own a few of these.

    Structured work Bag or briefcase

    Briefcase - BagghyBuy a large one if you have to carry tablets and laptops and files and papers like I do. Buy a medium-sized one if you've got your basic cell, makeup, and small books.  Again, Pursed Boutique carries a selection of work bags by Bagghy like the Trousse or Tanya bags.

    Just for Fun

    The original bag. It can be any shape or structure you choose. Get something that really stands out for your street style look, ripped jeans or for your evening style, and LBD.