When discussing fundamental matters of style, it's hard to avoid mentioning Jackie Kennedy.
Are you aware that Jackie used to mix real and fake jewellery? Yep, me neither, until I researched this post. It became widely known when Sotheby's auctioned off Jackie's baubles in 1996. Some of the fake pieces include the three-string pearl necklace she was famously photographed in with her son John.
Also in the sale were a pair of cheap Liz Claiborne earrings in pearl and diamante as well as some long strings of black beads. Inevitably, the aforementioned pieces fetched astounding prices (the pearls, valued at $65, went for $211,500, and the beads for over $100,000), all of which illustrates the point that with jewellery, as with so much else, it's not what you wear but the way that you wear it that counts.
Here it is again....
Perhaps Jackie's greatest genius was her ability to mix fake jewelry and the real stuff with aplomb. It was a very modern approach at a time when social and style mores could have suffocated a lesser woman. Jackie would have undoubtedly approved, then, of the current trend of wearing whatever one wants and of mixing not only fake and fine, but any and every metal and medium.
The other queen of fake jewellery was Coco Chanel. If you google Chanel jewellery, you will see the volumes of pieces which have been made.
Chanel jewellery mixed with a whole lot of other costume & real pieces....
Nowadays, yes, quality and craftsmanship are still king, but versatility and femininity also play a big part in a purchase. You have to love it. It needs to be rare, to stand the test of time, and it needs very much to be able to be worn with everything.
Nowadays its all thrown in together....
After all, we don't live at Downton Abbey and we no longer want to shut our jewelry away in a drawer to wear only on special occasions.
David Yurman ring....
Charm bracelets are the perfect example of what's required now by jewelry buyers. However, nobody wants to "wear their wealth" any more. There has been a trend recently toward softer, gentler stones, like pink spinels, aquamarines, sapphires and tourmalines—these are stones and pieces with character, rather than bling.
On top of the trend toward understatement and versatility, there is an idea now of "living in" our jewelry. Jewelry doesn’t only mark occasions now, it literally becomes part of our life experience. Many women buy pieces that mean something—maybe their daughter likes a particular stone, or they are having, say, their grandmother's diamond ring remade into something more modern that they can wear all the time. The key is that what you are wearing says something about you but also something to you.
You could say that the wearing of jewelry right now is almost counter intuitive. Witness the legions of women out there wearing cheap friendship bracelets with their expensive watches, bracelets and rings. In fact, uncut diamonds that only the wearer knows are really diamonds are popular because they say something about you and not your economic group.
Even the humble watch has taken on a new role. You no longer need a watch for telling the time; that can be done for you in so many other ways. If you are a woman, you should treat your watch more like a bracelet and purchase accordingly. In other words, a timepiece is now just another piece of jewellery.
Jewellery lifts what you are wearing, but it shouldnt be something that changes with the seasons or with your clothes (unless you want it to, of course). You should just love wearing it. And you should want to wear it all the time.