4 year-old with flair!: Jewelry Judge

As I was wheeling my cart towards the check-out area in Target this week, I could hear the loud cries of a little girl. She was apparently NOT getting her way with all the candy enticingly displayed by the register. I decided to pull in line behind them for some reason…and as I did, I noticed the darling bracelets she was wearing. As soon as I asked her about them, the crying stopped. Yes, I do believe we have a young jewelry-a-holic on our hands!

At only 4 years of age, she was rocking the layered bracelet trend. Not only was it age-appropriate, but she clearly has an eye for color, with her pink bangle perfectly complementing her beaded charm bracelet. Her mother was quite delighted, and said she picks out her own outfits and accessories every day. I wonder how big her jewelry box is?!

kid's bracelets
Future Fashionista!

Carrots in San Francisco….more than just a clothing boutique!

The first time I made the short jaunt from Union Square to Jackson Square to see the newly-opened boutique, Carrots, I was in love! The vibe was so modern and fashion-forward. It was like stepping right into some completely chic woman’s enormous closet, yet you can actually try on and buy the merchandise. And one of the selling points to me, was that it really covered everything from head to toe. You need the perfect bootie for those skinny pants? What’s your size. Oh, and a wide belt would be the finishing touch on that dress? Well then here, try this one. And of course, the pièce de résistance is that they carry some of the coolest, edgiest jewelry collections around. Whether you’re completing a look while trying on clothes, or just searching for that “perfect piece that MUST go home with you!!!” then you’re sure to find it here. (By the way, that’s an official jewelry category in my mind.) 😉

Opened in fall of 2007 by the lovely sisters Melissa and Catie Grimm, these gals really know what they’re doing! Although they grew up literally surrounded by carrots, (their family is the largest grower, producer and shipper of carrots in the world!) they certainly know what they’re doing in the glorious realm of fashion.

Last week I popped in (you know me and my pre-season “rounds”) and Catie spent some time showing me the latest and greatest. Here are a few items that turned my head.

First is this fantabulous leather, chain and beaded necklace by Marin local Geoffrey Young. You know that I’m currently obsessed with leather bracelets…and then this comes along!

geoffrey young necklace
This would certainly “make” a simple t-shirt!

I found these rose gold sword earrings by Suzanne Wilson extremely intriguing as well. Though I can’t necessarily picture myself wearing them, I can certainly envision them on some other, edgier woman. And here’s the interesting thing — when I browsed through this designer’s website, I didn’t see any earrings like these. But that’s where Catie and Melissa are so brilliant in their buy. They are experts at curating their own, signature look in their store.

suzanne wilson earrings
Luxe mixed with a bit of danger

There were a couple groups of bracelets that really grabbed my attention as well. This first display is oxidized silver and Italian-made by Goti. I could see them layered with other bracelets, or simply on their own. They are artistic, a little tough, and utterly hip, all at once.

goti bracelets
I love the texture and detail on these!

Perhaps a bit more attuned to my luxe-boho look are these beaded bracelets by Elizabeth Martin. I enjoy the patina of the turquoise and the organic feel of the rough black and cream beads.

elizabeth martin bracelets
Hmm…which one has my name on it?

Of course, I wouldn’t want to ignore my fingers. I adore the sleek designs of these silver and druzy rings by hitchcock Madrona. (I’m SO bummed I missed this store while up in Seattle earlier this year! One more reason to go back.)

hitchcock madrona rings
Natural elegance at it’s best!

Last, but not definitely not least, was this pair of stunning earrings. Taking a departure from the traditional chandelier earring for stepping things up a notch, these lovelies have natural diamond balls with a gorgeous tassel of oxidized silver. I must say that they are officially on my “lust list.” Created by a two-sister design team named The Woods, I’m in jewelry heaven!

the woods earrings
Now this is NOT your average earring!

I could go on, but I will stop here. Needless to say, if you’re ever in San Francisco, I would definitely add Carrots to your “to do” list. I know you won’t regret it!

Pop of Color: Jewelry Judge

As is typical here in San Francisco during summer…we get foggy, gloomy mornings. On a good day, it’ll clear by lunch, but many times we’re immersed in grey for the whole day. Trying to “look” like summer (while staying warm) when the high is going to be 64 degrees can be a challenge, to put it mildly!

Yesterday I was heading out of Neiman’s, when I accosted this darling girl who was lunching with a friend. Not only is she right on trend with her bold, colorful necklace, but I love how she paired it with the black and white check shirt. Inspired! And I like how she kept the rest of the accessories clean with her watch and simple, yet elegant ring.

She said the necklace was from J. Crew a few seasons ago. (Does this make it vintage?!) Just goes to show that you don’t need to break the bank to make a killer statement with your jewelry!

J. crew necklace
This pop of color really works!

Venessa Arizaga: Designer

One of the things I just love about this time of year, is that all the new merchandise for the season is arriving in the stores. I love seeing the boxes stacked up on the floor while store employees are eagerly unpacking new items out of the shiny, cellophane bags. It’s like Christmas come early! So, I make it a mission to really do the rounds, hitting all my favorite boutiques and department stores to make sure I don’t miss a thing! (because that, of course, would be a tragedy!)

Yesterday one of my visits was to Les Deux Copines in Burlingame, CA. I was just drawn to the necklace on the manequin in the window, and I had to investigate further.

les deux copines necklace
What’s around her neck??

Upon closer inspection, I was even more enamored of the edgy necklace, which really brought personality and individuality to the outfit.

venessa arizaga necklace

Come to find out that this super-cool creation is by Venessa Arizaga, who I one day hope to meet in person. I would describe her designs as fashion-forward, definitely with some edge, yet with a user-friendly vibe. Honestly, I’ve never seen a collection quite like it.

Look at this bracelet. I adore the juxtaposition of the woven silk colored thread with the heavier gauge chain. It’s like good-girl meets rocker, all in one piece.

venessa arizaga bracelet
I think I could picture myself rockin’ this…

As a life-long traveler and lover of the exotic, Venessa really puts a unique spin into her line. I was really drawn to these two necklaces. One, which plays with the uber-current neon trend, and the second, which I can really envision transitioning into fall, with a cream sweater and leather leggings.

venessa arizaga necklace
Just the right amount of neon!

venessa arizaga necklace
It has the feeling of an avant-guard sweater, yet for your neck!

Finally, I loved the irreverence in this pearl necklace. The small skull bead really says it all. Would you dare to wear it? Does is sync with your personal style? I certainly know a few people that this would work perfectly on!

venessa arizaga necklace
Perhaps not the right string of pearls for the PTA meeting

So yes, I’m intrigued. Have I purchased a piece yet? No, not yet, but I certainly wouldn’t rule it out. Can’t wait to see what ships next for the season!

Neiman Marcus Brooch Giveaway!!

Neiman Marcus is one of my absolute favorite department stores, and they had a killer promotion going on this past week. They were offering a gorgeous brooch with certain purchases, and let me tell you, they literally flew out the door! I’m sure it’s no surprise to my readers that I…uh…qualified for this prezzie, and I can’t wait to give it to one of you! I think you’ll love the gold tone, and the sparkling jewels in hues of blue and green.

neiman marcus broach
Wouldn’t you love to wear this ?!

Brooches are one of the hottest jewelry trends of the season. While they are traditionally worn on a jacket lapel, be creative! Use one pinned to your favorite clutch to really spice up your bag. Or pin it to the band of your snappy fedora. If you’re the lucky winner, enjoy! (This contest runs until Friday, Sept. 7th.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Clara Williams: Designer

Items that have multiple functions are something I love. Whether it’s a leather motorcycle jacket that can be transformed into a killer vest with de-tachable sleeves, or my hiking pants which can become capris with ease (don’t laugh!), I think it really extends your cost-per-wear on an item.

Dartmouth and Harvard-educated Clara Williams has brought this vision to jewelry, which you know is pretty much one of my biggest passions. With her patent-pended magnetic clasp technology, and over 11 years in business, she has broached (no pun intended) a whole new territory in jewelry. Honored to meet this Chicago-based designer at the Couture show in Vegas, I was so intrigued by her line.

clara williams jewelry
Clara and I at the Couture Show

So the concept behind her necklaces is that you choose the main necklace element, be it one or her 14K or 18K chains, or something more exotic, such as pearls. From there, you choose your center piece, which magnetically clasps to the necklace. How brilliant is that?!

clara williams necklace
14K braided gold necklace with tourmaline centerpiece

With your imagination, the sky is the limit with the combinations you can come up with. Here are some beautiful examples.

clara williams jewelry
Love the blue hues of lapis and turquoise!

clare williams jewelry
The rough aquamarine has my name all over it!

Her earrings are also convertible. Different enhancers easily slide on and off the basic earring. I can imagine that this line is the traveler’s dream, with the amount of different looks you can achieve with her jewelry! In addition, once you start “collecting” her line, you can just keep adding different pieces, really creating a multitude of looks.

Though Clara loves spending her time fly-fishing and traveling to exotic locales such as the Galapagos Islands, you can also catch her here state-side. Her line is offered in a variety of retailers, and you can even see it live in Pebble Beach coming up on August 16-19 at Elan at the Lodge. If you ever needed a reason to visit one of the most picturesque places in the Unites States, here you have it!

Statement Necklace: Jewelry Judge

I was out one Saturday morning in Palo Alto, and this gal’s necklace stopped me in my tracks. She had a few inches on me, which is saying something, and she walked with presence! Her simple black outfit was styled perfectly with this statement necklace. She said she picked it up at Buffalo Exchange. Not only is she stylish, but she’s eco-friendly with the recycled piece. Lovin’ it!

buffalo exchange necklace
Every aspect is in scale!

buffalo exchange jewelry
Close up of the necklace

Leather Bracelets: One of my Growing Obsessions

I’ve got a pretty darn solid sense of my personal style, which I describe as luxe bohemian. Translation: beachy, globe-trotting, relaxed feel dripping with gorgeous jewelry and accessories! (No one will ever accuse me of being a minimalist!) This is where developing my jewelry signature really helps define my style. My jewelry signatures include horn pendants, stacked rings and bangles, and druzy/agate pieces, to name a few.

I’ve begun adding a new signature the past 6 months or so…the leather bracelet. The concept evolved naturally, as I began incorporating some into my bracelet stacks. And now, I’m just becoming obsessed with them and noticing them everywhere! (It’s like the phenomenon when you’re shopping for a new car, and suddenly you start seeing your desired car all over the place!) Case in point, while shopping in San Francisco recently, I spotted this tremendous stack.

hermes bracelet stack
Hermes bracelet stack

This combination includes two Hermes enamel bangles (the H bracelet and the patterned one) along side a wide leather bracelet. It’s a little rock-n-roll, yet remains very sophisticated as well.

Victoria Beckham was also spotted stacking Hermes. Now this particular look is a bit too hard-core and sleek for my own personal style, but I can certainly appreciate it on her!

victoria beckham jewelry
Edgy Hermes stack

While in Las Vegas a couple months ago, I did encounter this killer bracelet at the Fendi store. This one spoke to me both with it’s lighter neutral color and the singular spike closure — just a bit of attitude, but not too much. In addition, it runs really tiny, so it fit my wrist perfectly. (Who knows why, but I have crazy small wrists for a tall girl!)

fendi leather bracelet
Softer rock-n-roll vibe

I also loved discovering Mulberry’s Bayswater leather bracelet when their store recently opened here in San Francisco. A client and I both swooped one up the week they opened! And the good news here is that they do come in more than one size and in quite a few different colors. I like that it’s not too wide, so it makes it easy to stack with other bracelets, allowing you to create very eclectic combinations.

mulberry bayswater bracelet
Be creative with your stacks!

Double-wrap leather bracelets are also increasingly popular. Hermes designs one of the most famous double-wraps, as shown here.

hermes leather bracelet
Hermes Kelly Double Tour bracelet

Gorgeous as this one is, for my own style, I prefer this taupe stunner with a big piece of Druzy by Rachel Olesker. I found this gem at The Store in Mill Valley, CA.

rachel olesker bracelet
This fits my luxe boho style perfectly!

So how do you feel about leather bracelets? Is this something you can see yourself wearing? Whatever your answer is, I bet you’ll notice one soon when you’re out and about! Cheers! 🙂

Joss Stone: Jewelry Judge

I’ve already admitted to you that Live with Kelly is one of my guilty pleasures on a leisurely morning. Well this week she had Joss Stone on as a musical guest, who was there promoting her new album. (Many of my Facebook fans are raving about it…I’ll have to check it out.) Well anyway, my attention during her performance was not on the song, but rather the spectacular necklace she was wearing. (I’m sure you’re not surprised to hear this!) It was reminiscent of a royal Egyptian collar, yet in sparkling silver, and it looked just amaze-balls with her black strapless top. Wow! Now, I’ll just have to track down who designed this stunning piece….

joss stone Live with KElly
Rockin’ an amazing necklace!

Here’s a view with just her…

joss stone necklace
Where can I find this??