Bijou all the way!
The melody of “Jingle Bells” might be playing in your head this time of year, but maybe you’re also hearing Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.”
Dig out your bold jewelry from the ’80s, or if you weren’t born yet, head out for the newest version of rad redux.
But wait! There is a qualifier this time around. Anything that jingles should be worn with a sense of balance. Fashionistas have learned from an ’80s past that there can be too much of a good thing. Take these cues in terms of trends and apply as needed.
“Accessorizing is a great way to incorporate trend into your wardrobe without investing in an entire outfit,” says Karen Giberson, president of the Accessories Council in New York. Add to that, she says, “Your jewelry always fits.”
Your jewelry should also fit your personality. Classic? Edgy? Romantic? Bohemian?
The woman who prefers a classic style might go for pearls and chains. The edgier spirit accessorizes her little black dress with ornate temporary tattoos that sparkle.
Delicate shoulder-duster earrings and perhaps several dainty necklaces speak to the romantic, while the bohemian goes for oversized rings on many fingers, layers of bracelets and wide belts with eye-catching buckles.
The brooch, in all its many interpretations, can be applied to both modern and traditional styles of dress.
But if there’s ever a time to dazzle, it’s the holiday season between now and Mardi Gras.
“Sparkle is always the way to go,” says Katy Beh, who designs her namesake fine jewelry in 22-karat gold with precious gemstones. When deciding where to apply your fashion budget, the local designer says to start with the ears.
“The sparkle from diamonds and gemstones, anything faceted, draws attention to your face and brings the focus to your eyes,” Beh says.
The latest trend is that earrings no longer have to match. Wear several earrings on one ear (perhaps an ear cuff, an ear crawler and an ear stud or dangle) and a single earring on the other. And the back of an earring is no longer just a utilitarian fastener, but also part of the design.
“This year we love a statement earring, from crystal to gemstone colors. It’s an exciting moment for earrings. Fun ideas include asymmetrical pairings, earring jackets and bold backs,” says Giberson.
Translucence and neutrals can be just as eye-catching as color, says Beh, who favors white stones for the holidays.
“White echoes snow and ice and snowflakes, seems wintery, brings light to the face and eyes and is always flattering. The stones can be diamonds, pearls. white topaz,” she says.
Those who shun the conventional can opt for skin art.
“Tattoos are still hot and there are a number of glamorous temporary options for the holidays,” says Giberson. “It’s a fun way to wear the trend without the permanent commitment.”
Companies such as Black Lace Skin offer a number of metallic choices and some with Swarovski crystal embellishments, or check out accessory boutiques at the local mall.
Last but not least, don’t leave out handbags as a jewelry option.
There are minaudières in polished metals, satin evening bags with bold stones and even clutches in reptilian prints polished with sequins.
Fashion-lovers who saw this year’s biographical documentary on 93-year-old Iris Apfel learned the art of jewelry as improvisation from the style icon’s own lips: “Jewelry can change an outfit more than anything else. Transformation, punch, individuality: One or all of the above are why you should wear jewelry.”