We are Being Deceived on the Apprenticeship Catastrophe

If we are to believe what we’re told, Australia’s apprenticeship system is in an emergency state, with plunging numbers after cuts in government assistance. In last year’s national election campaign, Bill Shorten maintained the number of individuals in training for an apprenticeship has been today at its lowest level since 2001.

Spending cuts from the Abbott-Turnbull authorities had seen apprentice numbers fall by over 120,000 due to the 2013 election, making it hard to find a tradie. In May this year, Karen Andrews, Assistant Minister for Vocational Education and Skills at the Turnbull authorities, said the aim of a new government finance was to revive the amount [of apprenticeships] into 2012 amounts, when Labor’s lack of employer incentives led to a huge decrease.

Earlier this season, a joint statement by the three largest business lobby groups maintained that apprenticeships had decreased by 45 percent since June 2012 and advocated that the Turnbull authorities to take urgent action to prevent an impending crisis within our apprenticeship system.

Not to be outdone, the ACTU maintained in the past year’s election effort that that the Coalition had ripped funds from apprenticeship applications, leading to a devastating drop in the amount of apprentices studying their trade.

When you recall the almighty hash that national and state governments of both colors have made of the attempts to smarten up TAFE schools by creating vocational education and education contestable by for-profit training suppliers, it is not hard to feel that, between these, the former Labour and current Coalition federal authorities have filled up apprenticeships.

Luckily, however, you don’t have to think it. It is not correct. For their own reasons, the folks I have quoted – Labor and Liberal, unions and employers – are trying to fool us about the condition of the apprenticeship system.

This is clear by a report printed this week from the highly recognized higher education specialist Professor Peter Noonan, also Sarah Pilcher, of the Mitchell Institute in Victoria University.

Allow me to ask: what do you understand the term “apprenticeship” to imply? Can you choose it to imply that the system that’s existed for decades in which young men and women work in trades like carpentry, general plumbing and hot water service repairs, electric, industrial cooking and hairdressing, and tackle about four years of training before getting qualified tradespeople?

Now do this: perhaps you have heard of the “traineeships” that the Hawke government devised in 1985 to decrease youth unemployment by giving training and job opportunities for young men and women in service industry jobs not covered by conventional apprenticeships? They generally last for just a year or so, and are common in both retail and hospitality, admin, childcare and aged care.

Get this: if all those folks I quoted talked of this “apprenticeship system”, what they’re really referring to was these short term traineeships.

Gillard crackdown

There has been a massive drop in the amount of traineeships since 2012 because the Gillard government decided to crack down on enormous rorting by companies and training providers of modifications in the traineeship system produced from the Howard government. There has been a small fall in the number of conventional apprenticeships since 2012, but that is despite the lack of any change at the complete financing of traditional apprenticeships.

Nobody would know the difference between apprenticeships and traineeships much better that Shorten, the ministry responsible, the company groups and the ACTU. None of these would fail to realise that the general public worries a lot more about trade apprenticeships for home extension builders and commercial contractors in Melbourne than about short-term support industry traineeships in Australia. When they chose to portray a crackdown on company rorting of traineeships as a catastrophe from the apprenticeship system, they knew full well they had been deceiving us.

Bureaucratic obfuscation

However, how did they believe they could eliminate such deceit? That no Peter Noonan will blow the whistle on these? Here is the bit you will have difficulty thinking. It seems like it is right out of a Utopia. They believed they would get away with it because, some years back, some genius in the national government made the decision to bring the traineeship numbers into the apprenticeship figures and call all of them apprenticeships.

You know, add oranges to apples and call all of them apples – like getting second storey house extensions and calling two floors the one. Good one. So much has that bureaucratic obfuscation gone, that real figures for apprenticeships and traineeships have vanished. You can, however, split the so-called apprenticeships between commerce apprenticeships (the actual ones) and non-trade “apprenticeships” (really traineeships).

Existing-worker traineeships

The number of traineeships has long been a lot higher than the amount of apprenticeships, which have a tendency to change with the strength of this market. Nevertheless, commencements have grown in certain classes: carpenters, electricians and technicians, with a majority hoping to become electrical contractors. However, the number of traineeship commencements ballooned after 1998, when the Howard authorities took a strategy aimed at encouraging companies to engage more young men and women, and forced subsidies offered for coaching of present workers, of any era.

The report states registered training organisations, apprenticeship centers and agents “vigorously marketed” those existing-worker traineeships for emergency plumbers for gas repair, backyard landscaping contractors, general electricians and the like. It found that a business model emerged where companies would discuss the incentives with registered training organisations, who subsequently delivered coaching, also often of questionable quality and duration.

Employer subsidies

From 2012, the summit ahead of the Gillard administration’s limitations took effect, 44 percent of all traineeship commencements were for existing employees. Approximately 18 percent of all “trainers” were aged 45 or older. The Howard government also decided in 1998 to make company incentives accessible for part time traineeships and apprenticeships.

The report states that this choice also created a marketplace in Commonwealth company subsidies, by which companies could change their part time and casual childhood workforces (such as full-time faculty and college students) into part time traineeships. This had a double benefit for companies – they could pay trainees the national training wage (under the appropriate award) while also asserting company subsidies, with coaching supplied entirely at work. Major retail companies and franchises, particularly from the fast food businesses, took complete advantage of those incentives. Now why is it that easy to believe?

How A.I will change E-Commerce and then the World

A.I is all around us, from browsing on Google to exactly what news you see on social networks to utilizing Siri. And with the momentum around AI growing every day, it’s not unexpected that a few of the most ingenious retail websites have just recently been exploring using AI, too.

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Services that overlook this growing pattern will find themselves playing catch-up for several years.

The huge concern is how precisely will this brand-new innovation alter retail? E-commerce is an area with a great deal of capacity, in part due to the fact that it’s such a data-rich market, and, there’s some momentum around AI methods currently. Exactly what’s more, a great deal of the AI strategies that are taking pleasure in success in other applications are well-positioned to make severe influence on the area, improving retail procedures and changing the online experience into something more like speaking with a knowledgeable sales representative at a brick-and-mortar store.

Imagine a world where you’re about to purchase a new basketball jersey for the upcoming NBA season and a little chat bubble pops up warning you that the player you’re about to buy is rumoured to be traded to another team saving you the annoyance of potentially having to return it in the future, or where consumer reviews are processed by an A.I so that a chatbot can provide customised answers to questions pre-purchase

Deep learning is a terrific example of this. It’s been the fuel for much of the current success in applied AI, so it is not unexpected that a few of the very first efforts at enhancing the shopping experience have actually been utilizing the power of deep learning in categorizing images. If you take a look at something like Pinterest’s visual search function, you can see the early development of how deep learning can integrate comfortably in a retail context.

Another example is innovations that permit you to take photos of things you see in stores, such as women’s pumps, on your commute or perhaps in an advertisement and make the products in those images shoppable. That can quickly act as the start of a shopping experience: You see something you like, however you have no idea the name or where to obtain it, or you simply desire something much like, state, a set of shoes you see in a store window (e.g. CamFind).

However, taking pictures is not the only technique for shopping, and there are other locations in the shopping experience where AI can play a part. In fact, the e-commerce user experience for things like women’s shoes, has basically remained the very same in the past 15 years. Which suggests that specific metrics, such as conversion rates, have actually stagnated.

An online buyer, who typically understands exactly what they are searching for, is confronted with the job of developing the ideal search terms, or scrolling through numerous pages of stock to discover it. Efforts at enhancing the keyword search experience with natural language have not made a significant distinction yet, partially because of that shopping, for the majority of users, is a really visual experience. This problem is amplified for multi-use products as well; such as multi-function clothing like reversible singlets, generic items such as laundry powder, raw materials like electrical parts; among a plethora of others

Deep learning can be of help here, too! Auto-encoding functions of images in a stock based upon resemblances and distinctions produces an abundant design of exactly what is offered in the stock, and the design is remarkably near to how we as human beings view shoppable products. The design alone, naturally, is insufficient: We require a method to comprehend a consumer’s choices as they connect with the stock.

Another AI strategy, called online learning, can be of use here, where websites have the ability to examine every click through an online stock in real time to comprehend client choices and develop a tailored shopping experience. Certainly, other non-visual elements of shoppable material, such as cost, size and match, should likewise be considered, assisting to weight the visual designs towards user choices.

The combination of deep learning and online learning will have the power to create really powerful A.I tools that learn extremely fast to tailor experiences for consumers and this potential goes beyond retail with opportunities of user interfaces being developed to provide online physics tutors among other subjects for children that are more effective than current teaching methods

AI will provide concrete and essential benefits for both sellers/developers and their clients/users.

Currently we’re seeing several, remarkable opportunities for product discovery allowed by AI: You’ll have the ability to take images of products you like using mobile data capture, search aesthetically online and get individual suggestions based upon an AI-generated design. However that’s simply the start.

Another AI development you’ll see applied to online commerce is site and material optimization. Typically, this has been done through experimentation, and validated utilizing A/B screening software applications like Optimizely. The concern with this sort of optimization, naturally, is that enhancing online material is a multi-point optimization issue.

a.i, machine learning, online tutor

There are numerous degrees of flexibility offered for expedition, varying from font size, messaging choices and images to utilize all the way to offered choices and options, page order as well as the design of the pages. Although screening specialists have clever hypotheses, various audiences react to various messages. Often the tiniest tweak shifts profits significantly. Often a full-blown overhaul is required.

Evolutionary algorithms (EAs), a class of AI methods, are distinctively fit for these sorts of issues. Influenced by concepts of survival of the fittest, EAs create a population of prospect services– in this case, setups for online material– then determine their efficiency and proceed to constructing brand-new prospects based upon the more effective prospects currently determined. To put it simply, you offer a program messaging concepts, image choices, page designs and more, and the EA mutates, combines and develops to discover the very best setup for success on a specific website.

Exactly what’s interesting about this method is that AI can determine the prospect options live, versus the existing user base, and enhance the efficiency on a continuous basis. Each user pushes the system to make tweaks and optimizations. In essence, this implies consistent and constant optimization that can in fact progress with altering user patterns. It is practically like the content lives!

However once again, there’s more. Chatbots, through assistants and automated client service associates, are ending up being progressively typical throughout the market. They have the prospective to develop an enjoyable experience for the user, one that is directed at determining precisely what best suits their requirements, while promoting the brand name identity through the chatbot personality itself. Lots of business developing conversational systems– such as Viv– are counting on this brokering of intent to online services as their supreme service design. It’s not tough to envision extending this to shoppable material.

AI is likewise primed to make the enormously complex (and data-rich) world of logistics a lot easier for sellers with tools like an asset tracking system, from making certain the best items remain in the ideal storage facilities to in fact anticipating which products will fly off racks.

Remarkably, as far as customers are worried, a great deal of these AI developments will result in one main idea: adaptive, in-the-moment customization– AI that can intuit exactly what a buyer’s design is and adjust its suggestions as she or he purchases; AI that can develop a site to particular customer requirements; and AI that can comprehend user issues and address complex concerns

Simply put, at every action of the purchasing journey, from discovery to shipment, AI will provide concrete and crucial benefits for both merchants and their clients. It will make shopping both much easier and more individual. And it’s currently occurring, all around you.

AI has the potential to revolutionise more than just the shopping industry; this is merely a starting point. Education will likely be the next step and while you can currently find a tutor online, A.I threatens to entirely automate tutoring by adapting exactly to the learners needs. We are only a step away from A.I existing in every aspect of our lives

Grooms and brides are dodging church events, research suggests

It’s a good day for a white wedding event and wedding reception, however not in a church.

Nearly 75 percent of weddings in 2014 were performed by civil servants, with religious events plummeting by a majority in the past twenty years.

Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that 57 per cent of wedding events in 1994 were performed by priests. In 2004 it was down to 41 percent and by 2014 only a quarter of all weddings were performed by ministers.

Bulldogs footballer Liam Picken married his wife Annie Nolan in Ballarat at St. Patricks Cathedral on New Year’s Eve of 2015.

Regardless of recognizing as an atheist, Ms Nolan wanted a church wedding so she could continue her family custom.

“I have to be about the 7th generation of Nolan’s to be married in a Catholic Church in Ballarat so for me knowing my forefathers once experienced a comparable big day was valuable,” Ms Nolan said.

Minister of 38 years and more than 1000 wedding events experience, Box Hill Parish Priest Father Tony Kerin said there are fewer but more fervent requests for church wedding events these days.

“Since individuals with flimsier church connections have socially appropriate options now, those who look for church services do so more intentionally now than in ages past,” Dad Kerin stated.

He thinks the lessening variety of church weddings has been influenced by a modification in the understanding of marital relationship in wider society.

Civil celebrant Sally Hughes stated more couples are concerning her for the liberty a civil event deals.

“Religious events are far more stiff and are determined by the church,” Ms Hughes said. “People desire a ceremony that is more inclusive for their visitors.”

Some of the most popular locations for civil events are beaches, Yarra Valley wedding venues, city roofing tops, art galleries and yard BBQs where the brides can get away with wearing women’s sandals on the big day.

Ms Hughes stated surprise ceremonies are ending up being progressively popular, where guests turn up in trendy women’s shoes believing they’re participating in an engagement celebration at a winery prior to the couple revealing it’s truly a wedding event.

The most bizarre wedding location was inside The Spiegeltent, total with ringmaster and cabaret artists.

 

Northern Connecter to be South Australia’s First Significant Concrete Roadway

The $985 million Northern Connector motorway will be the state’s very first significant roadway constructed from concrete, costing more however producing jobs, and saving money on upkeep. About 13km of the 15.5 km roadway, connecting the Northern Expressway and South Rd Superway, will be concrete, while the 4 interchanges will be standard asphalt.

In a joint announcement today, federal Infrastructure Minister Paul Fletcher and his state equivalent, Stephen Mullighan, will reveal the concrete construction is anticipated to support 40 extra tasks, such as the use of a slab crane to transport concrete slabs, and inject another $11 million into local industry.

“The preliminary capital cost is partially higher than an asphalt road but the advantages in regards to increased regional involvement and ongoing cost savings are well worth it,” Mr Fletcher said. Requested for a cost contrast, Mr Mullighan’s office stated concrete would cost an extra $300,000 however did not expose the total. The preliminary price quote of the upkeep saving is $23.1 million over the first 30 years, after the road is finished by 2020.

Mr Mullighan stated an extra 175,000 cubic metres of concrete would be needed for roadway pavement, all of which would come from local providers. “A concrete surface is anticipated to nearly cut in half the ongoing maintenance expenses of the roadway, with building and construction of the roadway pavement expected to begin in the 2nd half of next year,” he said. “In addition, concrete pavements offer savings for the running costs of heavy vehicles, such as fuel.”

Mr Mullighan said the road would have a “low-noise diamond grooving surface” which would be durable and safe while decreasing noise and enhancing ride quality. About 60 percent of the United States 73,000 km interstate highway system is concrete, which was chosen, in part, because of its durability. United States cement makers say concrete roads last twenty to thirty years without significant repair, while asphalt generally lasts eight to twelve years prior to resurfacing or substantial repair work is needed.

Lendlease Engineering, selected in May to design and construct the motorway, states concrete will maximise financial advantages to South Australia while minimizing continuous upkeep costs. The main professional contractor, Cement, Concrete and Aggregates Australia state director Todd Hacking, whose business likewise supplied concrete for significant portions of New South Wales’ Hunter Expressway, anticipated this would be the very first of many concrete roadways in SA as the financial, ecological and social advantages were understood.

Major Northern Port works are anticipated to begin within weeks, supporting 480 tasks yearly during construction, such as the work that will be given to the crane hire companies in South Australia At least half of all tasks will be filled by northern suburbs’ homeowners. Mr Mullighan said 7 previous Holden and automotive industry employees were amongst 70 people now dealing with the site.

Rewarding Remodeling’s To Increase The Worth Of Your Home

Home renovations are a headache and they can be costly. If you’re going to undertake them, you want to make certain you’re getting your cash’s worth. Some restorations will include more value to the rate of offering your house than others. These are the very best remodeling recommendations to increase the worth of your home.

 

Curb Appeal

The inside of your home might be remodeled from top to bottom, but if the exterior looks unattractive, you will never get possible buyers through front door to marvel over your granite countertops and your sunken whirlpool tub. Something even as simple as putting in some brand new exterior blinds would be a sophisticated touch.

 

Little things do matter and that’s good news for you because little things are less expensive and they are a lot easier to do. Think it or not, one of the very best methods to enhance your house’s value is to obtain a brand-new front door. This little enhancement adds approximately 96.6% of what it cost you to the worth of your house, according to U.S. News & World Report

Is your house looking a bit dull on the outside? Prior to you put it on the market, lease a power washer, which you can get for about $75 a day.

Landscaping is a vital part of curb appeal. It can include as much as 28% to the house’s value according to NAR. Strategically planted trees not just improve your home, but they can assist cut energy costs too.

Plants aren’t the only element of landscaping. Shelter is important to prospective buyers too, and it’s another one of those things that can save you, or the brand-new owners cash. Having a shelter reduces the risk of weather effecting outdoor equipment and furniture. Curved glulam roofs are very popular among new homeowners so that might be the way to go if you are wanting to go for a modern look, but if not, then there are a lot of architectural trusses around.

 

Beyond Cosmetic

It’s nice to stroll into a beautiful house, however there are some remodeling’s that are well worth the money that have nothing to do with interior design. Setting up central air conditioning in a 2,400-square foot home can cost around $10,000, but it can include as much as 10 to 20% to your house’s value, reported Real Simple.

It can also save you energy costs long term, as they are less pricey to run than window systems. Plus, central air conditioning systems don’t block the view of all that lovely landscape design you did the way that large window systems do.

Peace of mind goes a long way to making your house attractive to purchasers. Having to replace the roofing a few years after moving in is not on any buyer’s wish list. Because nobody wants to handle that, a new roofing system can include a great deal of value to your home, in between 15 and 40%, says Signature Exteriors, one business that installs them. It can likewise increase your house’s energy effectiveness.

 

Kitchen area is King

Even those people who eat take-out most night’s, dream of a beautiful cooking area, relaxing family dinners around the table, or entertaining pals.

Kitchen remodels can return as much as 83% on your payout., and with the kitchen being the hub of the home, it says a lot about your interior style if it’s designed well.

Granite counter tops appear to be a dealmaker for many people, so if you have yet to replace your old counters, you should get on it. Storage space is essential too. We buy lots of cooking area gizmos, and even if they’re simply “aspirational,” they need a location to live.

Simply repainting the kitchen area can make a big difference. If you have invested a lot of time cooking, the walls can be dull from smoke and grease. You might not see it any longer, however you can bet a potential buyer will.

 

Add a Bathroom

Remember when you were in college and needed to share a restroom with one, maybe more, roommates? We all remember it, and we all certainly don’t want to do it when we are adults who own a home. So, if your house only has one bathroom, adding another will make a huge distinction.

Adding or redesigning a bathroom can recoup in between 80-plus% of your investment. Individuals desire porcelain tiles on the walls and the floors, an upgraded shower stall with several showerheads, and great deals of counter space, with 2 sinks if you have space for it all.

Outside Area

Similar to homebuyers imagining entertaining in a newly renovated cooking area, they also dream of outside amusing. Adding a deck made with some gorgeous glulam timber can provide a return on investment of 73%, especially if you get some awnings to provide some protection as well to make sure you look after it. A patio area, while still preferable, includes less return, in between 30-60%, according to Inman.

You may think most purchasers wish to do all this outside entertaining poolside, but a swimming pool in fact includes little worth to a home. Swimming pools do require a lot of maintenance and some people do not wish to be troubled. Also, if your house remains in an area that interest young households, some would choose not to have a swimming pool because of the risk it presents to kids.

Where to for commercial, service and home heat?

In Australia, the focus of climate and energy policy has been electricity. It’s a core input to essential energy services, it’s pricey, and it is accountable for a 3rd of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

 

However, provision heat is responsible for half as much climate effect as electrical energy, or as much as transportation. And typically the devices that utilise gas or oil use a great deal of electrical power too. Current rapid increases in gas prices and cost volatility have concentrated on decreasing reliance on gas, much of which supplies heat, and with the new house design there is more of a focus on solar.

 

There is exciting potential to cut these emissions by procedures consisting of improved energy effectiveness, reassessing commercial procedures to minimise the requirement for heat, and switching from gas and oil to high efficiency electrical technologies owned by sustainable electricity.

 

Many households are already moving far from gas to high effectiveness reverse-cycle air conditioners, heat pump hot water systems and induction cooking. However we require much better insulated hot water tanks and ovens, in addition to thermally effective structures and wise electrical power management systems, to reduce expenses and maximise advantages.

 

In the industrial sector, gas usage, generally for space heating, hot water and cooking, is frequently terribly inefficient. Ineffective (typically old and badly maintained) boilers, large losses from pipes and ducts, bad control systems, thermally bad structures, and inefficient gas cooking offer huge capacity for savings. Previous low gas costs have actually led numerous to be careless in their use of gas.

 

Gas use in industry is frequently remarkably ineffective, too. When losses from badly insulated steam pipes and leaking fittings, ancient and ineffective boilers up to 50 years old and inefficient procedure devices are thought about, the waste is staggering.

 

Under the Energy Performance Opportunities program (closed down by the Abbott government, regardless of impressive cost-effectiveness and international acknowledgment), companies were required to establish computer system designs of the energy and product streams through their procedures and to benchmark efficiency versus theoretical optimums.

 

Many companies, and their knowledgeable engineers who are part of an in-house employee rewards program, were really amazed by the scale of inadequacy and the scope for cost-effective performance improvement.

Industrial-scale electric heat pumps now have the ability to efficiently supply steam using renewable electricity. Green chemistry and advanced metallurgy are producing more efficient processes, higher quality products and lower process temperature levels.

 

Smart controls and keeping an eye on systems lower turn down rates (and the energy squandered producing items that cannot be sold). Enhanced heat recovery and heat/cool storage boost versatility and allow previously lost energy to be made use of in modern house designs.

 

At the point of use of items, ‘virtual’ options are changing physical items and motion. These consist of weight decrease and moving to lower emission effect products (e.g. cement made from geopolymers, and engineered wood replacing steel and concrete). Increased recycling ways lower temperature level, less energy-intensive procedures replace production of virgin products.

We are also seeing amazing capacity to replace nonrenewable fuel sources with renewable energy across all combustion activities: ARENA just recently funded a research study that explored these possibilities with many extensive staff incentives dished out to high performing research and development volunteers.

 

Across all of the elements in the supply chain, the multiple benefits of brand-new solutions, ranging from cooler business cooking areas to lower turn down rates and enhanced personnel performance, amplify the energy advantages.

The huge concern is whether Australians will catch these opportunities or if they will continue to see themselves as being victims of modification. Maybe the emerging concentrate on energy efficiency and development can help.

 

An Insight To The Real Italian Women’s Shoes Craftsman

I was really interested in the article below that I found this yesterday afternoon, which gives you a great insight to an old fashioned Italian women’s shoe maker. I thought I would share it because he is currently making headlines for his craftsmanship. Enjoy the read!

The Italian who made simple shoes chic again

For a man who constructed his reputation around the perfectly engineered stiletto – mathematically balanced, refined proportions, neither too high nor too pointy – Gianvito Rossi is sanguine about the encroaching hegemony of the trainer, even though he holds it responsible for the ever-widening female foot.

“Trainers are part of modern life – and they’re better than destroying your feet with badly fitting high heels,” is his verdict.

The son of Sergio Rossi, one of the pre-eminent Italian shoe names from 1966 onwards, Gianvito is well placed to observe women’s feet for his range of womens shoes His mother wore heels as an article of faith. The family home was above the factory, and young Gianvito grew up with the sweet, damp tang of leather in his nostrils.

Despite trying to divert himself with a degree in sociology and political science, he gravitated back to the family business. After Sergio sold the company to Gucci Group in 2000, there were a few years when father and son no longer worked with shoes.
But Gianvito missed footwear so much he found shoes encroaching on his dreams. There was nothing for it but to launch his own brand. A decade in, he sells in more than 250 stores around the world, turns over €61 million ($88 million) a year and has been responsible for three of the most copied styles like womens sandals in recent times: the Portofino sandal, a deceptively dainty looking strappy stiletto; the velvet ankle boot; and the leather-tipped PVC stiletto court shoe, which has been a perennial bestseller since its launch five years ago.

womens shoes online

Stepping from leather

He loves that stiletto; it’s a man’s ideal of a woman’s shoe, he says. But he’s also grown very partial to working with velvet. “I think in future all shoe designers may move away from leather a bit,” he says.

Gianvito feels strongly about the wellbeing of feet. Hence his own (luxurious) trainer collection. And hence his relaxed acceptance of sneaker culture. It is hard, he says, to make a wide shoe elegant, but it’s not impossible.

“There are a lot of women 50 and under who have destroyed feet,” he shakes his head ruefully. “These are women who started wearing heels from about 1995 when the industry changed. In the past, designer womens boots and  shoes were made by shoe experts with high-quality rules and standards and enormous attention were paid to the fit.”

Sergio and Gianvito Rossi, for instance, had their own factory in San Mauro Pascoli and produced the shoes for Gianni Versace and Dolce e Gabbana, inter alia. From the late ’90s, as brands pushed for expansion, they took shoe production in-house.

“If you wear badly fitting shoes when you’re young, it’s terrible for the feet,” he continues. “So there are women in their 70s who have beautiful feet. It’s the younger generations that have suffered. I see it all the time. They can’t really wear heels anymore, but their mothers and grandmothers are fine.”

Impeccable craftsmanship

Rossi is a stickler for quality, even though his shoes sell for the same – or sometimes less – than equally elevated brands. Producing still from his own factory, he would rather concentrate on impeccable craftsmanship than bling. Far from making his shoes recede into the background, this attention to form makes them stand out for their elegance and defined silhouettes.

“It’s really not that hard to design a crazy shoe,” he posits. “You just keep adding more and more detail. But at some point you have to ask, ‘Is that elegant or modern?’ ”

Even when womens and  mens dress shoes reached heights of ostentation a couple of years ago, Rossi’s were notable for a sense of luxurious restraint that made them seem both contemporary and timeless.

His velvet ankle boot, introduced two years ago and available in 65-millimetre or 85-millimetre heels, is a case in point. It repeatedly sells out.

“Higher is not necessarily better,” he says. “And I speak as someone who designs from a man’s point of view. But if a woman wears a heel that’s too high for her, it distorts her silhouette. The key is balance, and not to be tied to only one style, as women of my mother’s generation were.

“Now you wear sneakers one day, stilettos the next. The main thing is that the woman is wearing the shoe, not the other way round.”

 


Read more: http://www.afr.com/lifestyle/fashion/accessories/the-italian-who-made-simple-shoes-chic-again-20161029-gsdptk#ixzz4PSlLe5FO

How To Incept An Art Gallery On The Cheap

1. Prepare picture hangers: Mark your walls where you wish the rails to be. After cutting your molding to the desired length, pre-paint to speed up installation. You can fill nail holes with putty later.

2. Set up molding rail: With finish nails, countersinking the nail heads. Then, pre-drill holes through the rail into the wall studs and protect with 2″ screws so the rail will bear weight.

 

3. Make your wall mounts: Have lengths of 1/16″ wire rope cut to length at the hardware shop. I utilized 6′ lengths. Bend brass corner braces to form the rail hooks. If you want to prevent flexing from occuring, alternative bigger “S” hooks are the way to go. The brass hooks I made hang near to the wall, a plus.

Thread an aluminum grommet onto the wire, run it through the bottom of your rail hook and back through the grommet to form a small loop. A couple taps of a heavy hammer will set the grommet. Just watch your fingers!

 

4. Make your art hooks: Take the copper terminal lugs and turn around the tabs so they will pinch the wire rope securely when the set screw is tightened up. Thread onto the wire. You’ll notice the tabs have a hole where you might use an “S” hook. I just bent the tab to form a hook using two sets of pliers.

 

5. Location the finished hangers onto the rail

6. Hang the art: Hang and change the terminal lugs as required.

 

For a bit more security, connect your art to the hook by running a zip tie around the hanging wire on the frame and the wire rope. To conceal excess wire rope, loop wire till it is in the back of the art-work and secure with blue painters tape, which will keep sticky residue from building up on the wire or suspended ceiling systems

News Update If You Are Travelling The Great Ocean Road This Weekend

I thought this news could be very interesting to anyone travelling down the great ocean road direction, as there has been quite a few landslips, so please read and stay safe everybody!

IS the Great Ocean Road open? More landslips from weekend rain

THE relentless weekend rain caused five more small landslides on the already embattled Great Ocean Road.

Nearly 60km of the coastal route was spectacularly closed last month, when wild weather caused landslips, downed trees and rock falls, and if you were enjoying your lavish Lorne accommodation, you may have escaped the worse!

The latest report from VicRoads’ Incident Control Centre has warned new landslips could occur at any time.

With 200mm of movement detected over the past four days from Monday, the east end of the Wye beach from the beach front caravan park towards Separation Creek has now been closed as a precautionary measure.

Geotechnical assessments will continue through the area during moderate winds with a high chance of rain forecast over the next few days.

Parts have since been reopened, and despite the downpour over the weekend the road remains open to all traffic between Lorne and Torquay

It is still closed to all traffic from Separation Creek to Wye River, as well as the beach below Paddy’s Path, and it is not yet known when that portion of road will be reopened.

While it also open from Lorne to Separation Creek, the speed has dropped to 40km/h and no large trucks or buses are permitted. Exemptions apply to garbage trucks, cement trucks and cars towing boats, caravans and trailers.

From Wye River to Skenes Creek the speed has been reduced to 60km/h with the same guidelines in place. So if you’re staying in some Wye river accommodation, you may be there for a little while longer.

From there, the road is open all the way to Warrnambool with no restrictions.

A Postal Worker Will Mow Your Lawn-Only in Finland!

posties mowing lawns

How about this for a think outside of the box idea: mowing lawns and landscaping

If you are lucky enough to live in Finland, you can have a postie cut your grass…. for a small fee.

Believe it or not, the postal workers came up with the idea and put it to management according to Anu Punola, the director of Posti, Finland’s official postal service. “We believe many customers will be happy to outsource lawn mowing when we make it convenient for them to do so,” she said announcing the program.

The idea is that the posties will do the job every Tuesday which is traditionally a light day for mail numbers in Finland. In recent years there has been fewer ads and magazines for them to deliver. The idea is also that the customers have to provide the lawn mower which really only makes sense. You cant really expect then to carry a portable one on the back of their bikes. The proposed cost will range from 65 euros to €130 ($75 to $149) per month and this depends on the size of the customers lawn. Another bonus is that it’s tax deductible.

Finland’s Posti was already a service that is considered to be very enterprising. They already deliver meals to many customers. The postal service also has plans to have a health care company teach its employees to help people who have many types of disabilities and help them with their cooking and cleaning needs.

But then, why stop there? How about  a full landscape paving service, or shovelling snow in the winter months? Or maybe even building retaining walls or walking dogs perhaps? Watching the kids for an hour or two or picking up some milk before delivering the mail? Helping with the kids homework? The list is endless. Curiouser and curiouser the whole plan seems to be.

It’s not just Finlands postal service that have innovative services. In Japan, their postal service provide banking and insurance. In Korea, mainly at some of the offices in rural areas, postal workers can make rail and airline bookings for you. If you live in India and want to sell stuff online, guess what? They sell goods online for you and then they also delivers them. However, the most innovative one comes out of the land downunder. Australia Post are testing the use of drones for their mail delivery. We are very impressed…but! Is a drone able to mow your lawns or build a retaining wall? Not yet, but I’m sure it’s just a matter of time. 

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