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Wearing jewelry now

November 7, 2012

Mixing patterns, textures and shapes in bangles while sticking to one colour at Joe Fresh

This one’s gonna be a decadently bedazzled fall. It seems our boredom with autumn hues has delivered a fresh and colourful approach to cooler weather dressing this year: wool coats in mustard yellow, plum skinny jeans, blue suede shoes. It really is about time this season was yanked out of its sunlight deprivation syndrome.

Despite what may seem to some as an anything goes moment in fashion, there is some reason to the madness of mixed prints, contrasting colours and mish-mashed eras. Costume jewelry is one of the easiest ways to get in on some colour if you’re not actually going to buy the red corduroy leggings.

Let’s take a look a what we see what’s working out there in the world of bling.


The Cool Way: The customized cuff. Think large, jeweled, and stacked. Stick to a focal colour and play tones of it in different renditions: charms, matte stones, pearls, resin, cuffs, chunky chain. It’s all about the value of each piece’s details and group unity through a colour commitment. Wearing two or three on the same arm is best but each can be worn on their own because each is special. Together they are dramatic and cuff the arm.

J Crew does a nice job with this ad of showing how to wear ornate ‘fancy’ bracelets in a very everyday look: the slouchy sweater, messy hair, no makeup. The bracelets steal the show and lift the green hue to glam


The Cool Way: Clusters of different colours. The geometric trend is shaping stones and baubles into fun-filled gatherings. This is better than unity in colour- it’s an anything goes situation and we like it. The hard thinking of which colours go together is already done for you, so wear these with an outfit that picks up one of the colours in the jewel, or wear with  your go-to basic pieces. This is ideal for the colour-shy a.k.a. the all-black dresser.

Clusters of resin gems are easy to wear: these from Kate Spade would look spectacular with black or with any colour represented here. That’s mileage

Contrasting bold colours makes a statement earring that gets every job done: pick up coffee on the way to work, order a cocktail at the bar and flips through the latest with the book club. $78 at Kate Spade


The Cool Way: Over-the-top cocktail cluster. The bling knock-out punch as been a mainstay year-round and we’re seeing the cluster trend seep into the digit area this season. We’re also seeing a few ‘horizontal’ rings that span more than one finger, and while they’re still kicking around, we’re all in agreement that they’re passé.

Size is key when it comes to rocking the cluster cocktail trend, and the shinier, the better. You can find a fab specimen in very cheap & cheerful pricing, so take a chance on something completely outrageous. Best bet: the H&M trio cluster (below); at less than 10 bucks it will bring in more compliments and earn you fashion cred you may not even deserve.

The cocktail ring is the best party asset: it feels exciting to wear something so decadently bling and it looks fantastic as you hold a glass of bubbly. $9.95 at H&M


The Cool Way: Chunky and worn on top of a shirt or dress. This may seem counter-culture since we’ve just exited a decade and a half of shaming anyone in a necklace over a turtle neck. The difference here is that the petite and delicate pendant with your birthstone is still not ok over your turtleneck- but chunky costume jewelry is.

This season the big necklace gets the memo for the office: wear with a dress shirt and blazer. It’s a glam way to loop over a simple dress’ modest neckline and instantly makes it interesting. Note to self: this chunky necklace trend is not going away so get one and get used to it.

Festive and offering movement and colour, this necklace at H&M gets the job done of bringing in cut stones, shine and considerable size to the neckline. $20 at H&M

Mixing metals is one of my personal favourite trends from the past few years. I’m so done with silver-silver, gold-gold. Let loose! Mix ’em up. $25 at Aldo Shoes

Images courtesy of featured retailers.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. November 8, 2012 7:20 am

    Wow–the H&M necklace for $20 bucks seems like a steal—I also love the Kate spade earrings. Which also reminds me I need to clean out my jewellery tray. Tangled mess. TERRIBLE.

    • November 8, 2012 10:25 am

      Yes- a steal is right. I find with costume jewelry you can often find a really great piece at H&M, Forever 21, Aldo, etc. These shops offer great finds for something that you may or may not commit to in the long run. I love the Kate Spade earrings but I am not necessarily dropping $80 on earrings at this time, although given how much wear they will deliver, it may be worth it.

      I often tell people that the jewelry I bought at H&M is vintage- I just lie. Being honest about some beautiful pieces’ provenance somehow diminishes its perceived value/beauty, so I’ve taken it upon myself elevate these special pieces and give them the best representation. Otherwise people wrinkle their nose and look at it like it’s a cheap trinket from a gumball machine. No more!

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