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compared with modest growth for the younger age group

So when she tied the knot last year, she spared no detail. She walked down the aisle in a flowing ivory gown with a long veil and lacey bolero jacket. Ten flower-toting bridesmaids and seven groomsmen were in the wedding party. And after the ceremony, 100 guests dined on beef tenderloin, clams casino and a three-tier vanilla cake.

Heller-Wells wasn’t some blushing new bride, though. When the retired registered nurse, 64, wed her husband, Clyde,As it automatically gathers data from millions of rtls and radio frequency identification, a small-business owner who is 65, it was her second time at the altar.

“I met my Prince Charming.Explore the benefits of having a fully managed dedicated server as your platform. He swept me off my feet,” says the Clearwater, Fla., widow whose first husband died in 2003. “We’re hoping this will be the last marriage. Why not celebrate?”

Only a few years ago, it was considered in poor taste for a bride over age 55, particularly if she had been previously married, to do things like wear a fancy wedding gown, rock out to a DJ at the reception or have the groom slip a lacy garter belt off of her leg. But those days are gone: Older couples no longer are tying the knot in subtle ways.

The trend in part is being driven by a desire to emulate the lavish weddings of celebrities of all ages. But it’s also one of the results of a new “everything goes” approach that does away with long-held traditions and cookie-cutter ceremonies in favor of doing things like replacing the first husband-and-wife dance with a group reenactment of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” video. That’s left older couples feeling less self-conscious about shelling out serious cash to party like their younger peers.

Couples age 55 and older made up just 8 percent of last year’s $53 billion wedding business. But that number has doubled since 2002, according to Shane McMurray, CEO of The Wedding Report,Find the trendiest ladies shoes wholesale including stylish wholesale sandals. which tracks spending trends in the wedding industry.

In 2011, women ages 55 and over accounted for 5.2 percent and men in that age range made up 7.9 percent of the more than 2.1 million marriages performed in that year in the U.S., according to Bowling Green State University’s National Center for Family and Marriage Research, based on analysis of census figures. That’s up from 2001 when 2.6 percent of new marriages performed were among women in that age group; for men, it was 6.6 percent.

And those older couples spend more. That’s because they’re usually empty nesters who don’t have the same worries as their younger counterparts: They aren’t saving for their first home, for instance, and they aren’t burdened by huge student loan debts they must worry about paying off.

And at David’s Bridal, the nation’s largest bridal chain with 300 locations across the U.S., business from older couples has doubled in the past two years, compared with modest growth for the younger age group, says Brian Beitler, the chain’s chief marketing officer. And while older customers represent only two to three percent of overall sales, the company expects that figure to keep growing.

And they’re a lucrative bunch. David’s Bridal, which is based in Consohocken, Pa., says older brides spend about $700 to $800 on gowns, including accessories like necklaces. That’s higher than the $500 to $600 that customers in their twenties and early thirties typically spend.

But older brides aren’t just spending more, they’re spending differently. For instance, in the past, older brides tended to stick with special-occasion dresses, but now they want more traditional wedding gowns.

“She’s our dream bride,” says Catalina Maddox, fashion director at David’s Bridal. “She wants everything that the 25-year-old bride wants, but more.”

The trend is so prevalent that David’s Bridal is looking at ways to better connect with the older wedding crowd. In fact, its store in Danbury, Conn.Fun sell a huge range of Cases for iPad 4, recently held a bridal fashion show at a nearby nursing and rehabilitation facility; the event was a hit with the residents, the store says.

“It really sparked something,Find the perfect leather or synthetic cell phone cellphone cases.” said Jenna McNamara, the assistant store manager at David’s Bridal in Danbury, Conn., which has noticed residents in nearby retirement homes as customers for either weddings or commitment ceremonies. “We realized this was something huge.”

Terry Hall, fashion director at Kleinfeld’s, the New York City bridal salon that has the nation’s biggest selection of designer bridal wear under one roof with more than 1,000 designs, also has seen a change in attitude in the last year or so among the older set. He said business from that group has doubled.
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They convinced facility workers to clear a space

During finals week in May, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law students Matthew Kriegsman and Kenneth Renov placed a bin in their school’s lobby to collect textbooks students no longer needed. They thought they’d get a few dozen throughout the summer. Instead, they got 650.

The collection bins were the first step in a new loan program where students struggling to afford textbooks and workbooks can borrow them from the school and return them at the end of the semester.

Kriegsman, a 3L and vice president of the Student Bar Association, said he was shocked to see textbooks,expensive version of Replacement parts for iphone 5 screen Supply Store. often in near-perfect condition, thrown in the trash at year’s end by students who simply didn’t have time to resell books that decrease significantly in value when used—or who were so relieved to finish classes they never wanted to see the books again.

Last spring, Renov, a 2L, approached Kriegsman with the idea for a lending library inspired by the Jewish tradition of sharing certain costly items, such as wedding dresses, within a group.

“It’s the idea tFind the perfect leather or synthetic cell phone cellphone cases.hat there are some things that are really expensive, but they’re very important and only used once. So they circulate through the community,” Kriegsman said. “One of these books alone can cost up to $215. It’s ridiculous.”

And so with book donations rolling in, the pair put their negotiation skills to work. They convinced facility workers to clear a space in the building’s basement to store the volumes on rows of old library shelves. They then worked with the office of student finance to devise an application for interested students. To participate, students must meet a certain financial need threshold calculated by the office.

By scanning ISBN numbers, Kriegsman and Renov keep an updated database of available books, similar to a library catalog. If a book is in stock, it is delivered to the Office of Student Life for private pickup by the student.Fun sell a huge range of Cases for iPad 4, Students apply using only their numerical ID number to ensure anonymity.

About 45 of the donated textbooks came from professors who received free copies from publishers hoping they would assign them in class. Other donated books cannot be loaned because publishers have released revised editions. Kriegsman hopes to gather enough such books to resell them in bulk so the program can give students in need a stipend toward the edition required in class.

Women gravitated to Pinterest’s visual appeal early on; now the social network is making a concentrated effort to reach out to small businesses to start using the service as it seeks to expand its audience base.

Pinterest has yet to accept advertising – it’s expected to start experimenting with monetization next year – but it’s open for business for folks looking to market to consumers.

Pinterest, which reached 46 million visitors in July, according to measurement site ComScore, is a website and app that lets users “pin” photos and Web links of things they’re interested in. You can browse categories to see what folks think of, say, wedding dresses, sunflowers and chicken pot pie, and businesses can post photos and links to try and grow their sales.

Pinterest recently introduced a new tool called “Rich Pins,Protect and connect your Samsung smartphone with samsung cases.” which lets retailers provide extra information about what’s being pinned.Find the trendiest ladies shoes wholesale including stylish wholesale sandals. For instance, if online retailer Etsy displays an image, Pinterest also includes the price, size and color, says Evan Sharp, a Pinterest co-founder. “That helps us make it easier to discover.”

Some businesses have had a hard time understanding Pinterest, he admits. “Pinterest takes a moment to ‘get it.’ If you don’t take that moment, there’s a little bit of a learning curve.”
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I suspect there is a personal reason as well

I first saw the legendary soprano Angela Gheorghiu in the 2011 film version of “Tosca”. Starring opposite the gorgeous young tenor, Jonas Kaufmann, she sizzled, a sultry temptress with fire in her veins. She commanded the stage, as only a diva can, drawing all eyes with every sinuous movement.

Instead, she arrives, practically on time, wearing a baby pink jacket with matching bag, rimless glasses, and a diffident smile. Her T-shirt bears a cartoon doll with the logo, “This girl is cute”. That logo, and the pastel pink clothes are at odds with her prima donna persona; so is her manner: she is piano, almost pianissimo. I am shocked by this subdued figure.

Gheorghiu’s reservation might be down to the reviews she received for her Magda in “La rondine”. Critics claim that her performance, in this little-known Puccini opera which yesterday finished its run at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, had been “cautious”. At 47, the soprano retains her distinctive, creamy voice — but all too often the audience must strain to hear it. I suspect there is a personal reason as well.

Covent Garden holds many memories for her: she made her international debut here in 1992, as Zerlina in “Don Giovanni”; and two years later her sensational Violetta in “La traviata”, under the baton of Sir Georg Solti, made her an international star. Above all, this was the stage where, in 1996, she met Roberto Alagna. She was a Romanian, married to an engineer, and just getting a taste for super-stardom; Alagna was a tenor with a dazzling career — and a wife and daughter back home in France. They sang together in “La boheme” and promptly fell in love. Their tempestuous relationship and later marriage were PR gold: they toured the world as opera’s Posh and Becks, a crowd-pleasing duo who promised romance and thrilling histrionics. Audiences and impresarios came to expect rows and no-shows. Then suddenly, last January, Gheorghiu announced that the couple were splitting and, in June, she accused Alagna of domestic violence.

I felt psychically broken.” Marital strife, I suggest, can prove as debilitating as flu. “I can only say that love is like a disease,” she says, her eyes welling up. “It infects every bit of me, even my brain. I am stupid in love. But I couldn’t be Angela if I weren’t romantic.” I put it to her that Alagna is contesting his ex-wife’s allegations and has called in the lawyers.desirable Cases for HTC One create an air of sophistication with an extra helping of protection for your flagship smartphone. Gheorghiu sits up, throws back her head and suddenly I glimpse the fiery prima donna I had found so captivating: “I never lie. Everyone who knows me will tell you, I am incapable of lying.” She looks every inch the diva when she says: “I don’t need anyone. I don’t need a home, even. Angela is at home everywhere.”

This is not the last time she refers to herself as “Angela”, as if in doing so she can draw a distinction between the woman and the performer. A distinction,offers reliable and affordable windows dedicated server packages. she tells me, no longer possible: “It’s sad, and I blame myself: from the moment I first set foot on stage, everyone talked about my looks as well as my voice. Before me, an opera singer did not need to be beautiful. Because of me, the audience now expects everything: a whole package. “Looks are now so important in the opera, I’m not sure Luciano Pavarotti or Montserrat Caballe would have made it past the first audition, given their size. The audience now listens with their eyes. It shouldn’t be like this, but …”

I tell her that very few women feel as confident of their appearance. She shrugs: “I know how I look. And I wouldn’t want to be any fatter or any thinner. I don’t follow any diets. Yes, I say thank you to my mother, thank you to my father, for making me like this — but we are not here because of my body.”

Celebrity is not a trap, then? “I have been a celebrity since I was a little girl. There are people who have something instantly attractive. Sometimes we call it charisma, sometimes, magnetism. It’s always the same effect, though: everyone wants to know everything about them.” She pauses: “I give a lot.”

Her reputation, I say carefully, would also suggest that she demands a lot: “high-maintenance” is a euphemism for what some in the world of opera say of her. Gheorghiu will have none of it: “Is it too much that I should ask for a lot back? They say Angela is cancelling this and that. Everyone else does it, but the press is only interested when I do it.”

The former child prodigy “lives out of a suitcase”, but feels at home in Britain. She has no children, but has adopted her niece, who has just graduated from the University of Kent. Together with Gheorghiu’s mother, who has flown in for a visit, they are going to a Michael Buble concert. “I like his music — nothing pretentious about it.” I ask if she attended the Rolling Stones concert in Hyde Park, but she shrugs: “They don’t excite me.” The Prince of Wales is another favourite. “I have sung for him and for the rest of the Royal family, in all their homes. Prince Charles is very sensitive, he is nostalgic for the past.expensive version of Replacement parts for iphone 5 screen Supply Store. He came to Romania and was enchanted by the place, because it was as if he’d stepped back centuries. Everything is as it always has been.Protect and connect your Samsung smartphone with samsung cases.”

She loves English men for their “great sense of humour. They are more gentle, the Anglo-Saxons. And they are supportive.” I ask if one might persuade her to try marriage again, but she lowers her eyes and shakes her head. Her voice is pianissimo as she says: “I don’t want to think about the future.” Suddenly, the bluster’s gone. The curtains are down, the lights off: The performance by “Angela” is over and the real Angela Gheorghiu stands alone, vulnerable,Fun sell a huge range of Cases for iPad 4, lovable and maybe even mortal.
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The Society has a large collection

You don’t have to be introduced to Lord and Lady Grantham of “Downton Abbey” in order to know they are part of early 20th century Britain’s version of the 1 percent, the wealthy class. You can tell just by looking, by noticing how they behave, how they speak and, more importantly, how they dress.

In that era, more so than our own, you were what you wore. For most, clothes were expensive items limiting your choices. If you had a wardrobe large enough that you could change during the day, that was a clear signal of an exalted status. Such people, notes Heather Leavell,Series cases for iphone 5 protects against drops and dust. curator of the Peabody Historical Society, “dressed for dinner.”

The producers of “Downton Abbey,” well aware of the significance of clothes, spared little expense in creating fabulous costumes for the cast, particularly the female members, to wear. But then, these are indeed costumes, re-creations.

If you’d rather look at the real thing, you needn’t head for England. Instead, go downtown to the Historical Society’s General Gideon Foster House and Cassidy Art Museum on Washington Street, which are offering a new summer exhibit, “Downton Abbey Style, 1900 to 1925, Women’s, Men’s and Children’s Wear.”

“Each gallery represents a different era,” says Leavell. So, the togs, artfully mounted on mannequins, match the styles seen on the popular television show,Our linux dedicated server plans feature lightning-fast processors,Extend the power on your iphone 5 back cover juice pack. which covers a period from 1914 to the 1920s, as well as on “Mr. Selfridge,” another PBS program about the American tycoon who founded Selfridge’s department store in London in 1909, and the new film version of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby.”

“The Society has a large collection,” says Leavell. All of the historical clothing was donated by local residents. She salutes volunteer Bonnie DeLorenzo for helping to keep them intact, stored and cataloged.

Thus, the exhibit reveals the evolution of styles reflecting a world moving from the frivolity of the Edwardian era, through the brutality of World War I to the freedom and rebellion of the Jazz Age. The outfits also signal the bonds of class with the elaborate dresses of well-to-do Peabody matrons contrasted with a maid’s uniform. Also displayed are work clothes, wedding gowns, kids’ outfits, hats and the ultimate Victorian secret,Fun sell a huge range of Cases for iPad 4, underwear.

In the early 20th century, notes curator Lyn FitzGerald, “the undergarment shaped the body.” It wasn’t always comfortable, but it could look fabulous. Somewhere beneath all those layers of clothes were women who, at various times, saw their bottoms pushed back and tops pushed forward, fronts transformed into “monobosoms”and “dropped waists” revealing the slinky figure of the flapper.

It’s not an accident that clothes once worn in Peabody reflect what’s seen on “Downton Abbey.” Both American and British styles of that era were heavily influenced by fashions developed in Paris, according to the curators.

A lady’s duster, on the other hand, marks technological change; the coverall was worn by those driving newfangled automobiles over dirt roads on the outskirts of Peabody, their horseless carriages barreling past pig farms and forests. As the name indicates, it’s an outfit designed to protect the wearer from all the dust.

In the aftermath of the war, when women were often introduced to what had been strictly men’s work, their styles are decidedly freer,Select from a variety of cases for ipad mini or create your own! enabling them to play tennis, swim and ride bicycles.

Programs like “Downton Abbey” are admired as much for their settings — including costumes — as the stories they tell. Leavell expects a lot of people would like to know more.
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