BLACK GOLD: The cost of black gold (oil, that is)–and just about everything else these days–is causing a lot of jewelry designers to re-scale their new collections. The average family budget is tighter than it has been in quite a while, but women’s desire for gold jewelry is as strong as ever. So what began as a simple economic compromise is soaring into the stratosphere of fashionable chic.
And what is this Uber-Trend? It’s two-tone jewelry, combining precious gold and silver, with gold as elegant, featured highlight. The less-costly silver usually makes up the main body of each individual piece. Result: Much lower cost, desired look of precious gold, freshly paired with super-hot silver, in a new, very NOW look. All of this follows the
Roberto Coin credo called:
The designer defines this as jewelry pieces conceived to look more expensive than they actually are.
THE YURMAN EFFECT: The idea is not exactly new, of course. Designer David Yurman actually built his reputation on fashion-forward mixed metal jewelry before moving into the fine jewelry field a few years ago. But now, some super-hot jewelers like Coin are resurrecting the style with new excitement and real practical incentive.
But…the momentum is not limited to fine jewelry by any means. In fact, one of the most important things about this trend is its unique implications for costume jewelry. Now, women everywhere can adopt the fabulous two-tone gold/silver look at prices that place no strain on their wallets. Customers can choose individual pieces that blend the two metals, or simply combine, say, individual faux silver (or silver-plate) with faux gold (or gold-plate) bracelets or neck chains to get the desired effect.
CHANDELIER EARRINGS: The gold/silver combine is especially good-looking in hoop or chandelier earrings. It also works up into a stunning necklace in practically any length. Pendants, bracelets and rings in mixed metals also express a very timely look, and come across with verve and newness when presented in architecturally clean designs.
A major trend in the mixed metal field is the re-emergence of hearts as one of the top symbols in both fine and costume jewelry. One beautiful bracelet in the field is a double heart that drops from elongated, textured silvery links. A smaller gold-plated heart lies atop the larger silvery heart. Another multiple bangle has alternating silver- or gold-plated heart drops on each bracelet circle. These are elegant, modern takes on a timeless classic.
CROSSES AND DAGGERS: Other symbols coming on strong in the field are also linked to the past: crosses and medieval-looking daggers. In some instance, you get the feel of the Knights of King Arthur’s Court with these pieces and the purist’s eternal fight for “Good.”
Other money-saving ideas starting to appear are 2-in-1 omega necklaces that actually reverse, with gold on one side, silver on the other. Another technique is to craft bracelets that readily adjust up from 7-1/2″ bracelet length, to 9″ length, so they can also be used as anklets and bracelets. Again, by providing different looks and greater flexibility in a single piece, this idea tends to justify purchases of exciting new pieces of jewelry, something always needed by the customer, no matter what state the economy!
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CLUTCH MANIA: Medium and little hand bags carried by hand are big and getting bigger in the fashion world. Some of the bags are fairly traditional, little clutches in patent or tooled leather, medium sized bags with pretty bow-like ornamentation or gemstones playing up the main part of the bag in place of straps or buckles. These are tart-y little things, often in bright colors like green or yellow, not necessarily going with anything being worn.
A particularly interesting design is a little square about six inches across with small rhinestone squares in the body of the bag. These aren’t evening bags we’re talking about, rather nice little day bags for ladies who either don’t have too much to carry or who have actually disciplined themselves to carry less. Impossible! You say? Well, then, think dualistically: A cute little bag to clutch and carry, a big tote for all your real gear. And of course, it you absolutely adore them, these bags do work well for evening, too!