Do you consider yourself a pearl girl? (Yes, Jen, I see you nodding your head.) I’ve never had a strong affinity for them personally, as most of the designs I saw growing up were too traditional for my taste. It’s just not my personal style to wear an heirloom strand of white pearls or a pair of round stud earrings, as lovely as they are. But let me tell you that the tide is turning, and I’m seeing some sleek, modern designs out there that may have me changing my tune. Take a look at these pieces and see what you think.
Many people associate sneakers with the gym or uber-casual clothing, but I’m here to tell you that you can really elevate your sneaker look. A few years ago, I spotted many stylish sneaker looks on women in Stockholm and Copenhagen. With the increasing popularity of sneakers here in the States, I even started a whole Pinterest board last fall called Sneaker Chic.
The key to looking pulled together is pairing them with an outfit with clean lines and in predominantly solid neutrals. Slip-on styles appear a bit dressier than lace-up options. And yes, you can even wear them with skirts and dresses if you’ve got the formula correct.
With fall merchandise now arriving in the stores, I’ve noticed many pairs of bejeweled sneakers on the shelves. Since I’ve often written about how blingy shoes and bags definitely count as jewelry in an outfit, I thought I’d give you some ideas of how to incorporate this trend into your wardrobe. And of course, both of these outfits I’m going to show you can easily be worn with a simpler, non-jeweled pair of sneakers as well.
First of all, here’s a sampling of what I’ve seen coming in at a variety of price points. Definitely jewelry for your feet, right?!
So now let’s take it a different direction — how to wear sneakers with a dress. Again, I’m going to say keep it simple and clean with the outfit. This will make you look modern and sophisticated. For the dress, I chose this Rag & Bone ribbed stretch-wool design.
If you could see yourself creating some sneaker ensembles, I encourage you to go play in your closet a bit and see what you can come up with. Use these ideas, and the looks on my Sneaker Chic board as inspiration, and then see how you can adapt it to your own style.
Keep your budget in mind, and remember the cost-per-wear principal. If it’s something you’ll wear a ton, then the cost-per-wear will go down and it’ll be a better investment. If it’s an item that will be worn infrequently, then see if you can find a less expensive version that will give you the same look.
And if your are so NOT a sneaker gal and you’d rather wear heels, then go for it! As with any fashion trend, it’s all about staying true to you!
I spent countless weekends at my Italian grandparent’s house in Los Gatos while growing up. I have so many vivid and cherished memories of the time spent there. Whenever my little brother and I would arrive, we’d run into my Nonie’s closet to get a piece of Chiclets gum she always had in her purse. Just typing that sentence, I can feel the crackly texture and whoosh of mint as I would bite into it. We loved to go feed the ducks and ride the train at Vasona Park, eat her mostaccioli with special sauce, and watch Lawrence Welk (while dancing on Nonno’s feet, of course!) . And I can’t even tell you how many games of horseshoes we played in the backyard, with the hand-made wooden score planks made by Nonno.
I know you won’t be surprised, but on certain special occasions, Nonie and I would quietly go into her modest bedroom (sans boys) and look at the treasures in her jewlery drawer. Though she did not have a valuable collection, each piece had sentimental meaning to her and was carefully separated with the terrycloth towel with which she lined the drawer. I loved listening to her tell me about the different pieces, who gave them to her, and where she wore them.
One of my most favorite pieces is her engagement ring…
At one time, this ring had a center stone, but now it’s just a roughly worn piece of blue glass. They were very poor immigrants, and when the original stone (I’m assuming a sapphire) fell out, glass was the only thing they could replace it with. Nonie told me it got so worn and pitted from all the lye that was used in long-ago days doing laundry. Running a boarding house at one point early in their marriage and having three children, she did more than her share of laundry, to be sure.
Though this ring has no real monetary value, it’s one of my most treasured possessions. I wear it frequently, and I’m often asked questions about it. And whenever it’s on my finger, I truly feel like my Nonie is with me. I love her and miss her.
Do you have any treasured sentimental pieces in your jewelry box? I’d love to hear your story! Please send me a photo of your faves to [email protected]
I was on Instagram scrolling through my feed three weeks ago, and it sort of went like this…cute, ‘like’…funny, ‘comment’…still scrolling…why did they post that?!…still scrolling…Holy Cow–what am I looking at?!? (almost drop phone)
Joel Adam Baynard, the master behind Freestone Peach, did not set out to become a jewelry designer. In fact, his path to getting here has been quite diverse. Born and raised in North Carolina, he had creative relatives in the Blue Ridge Mountains who quilted, shaped stone and turned wood. He has served as a US Naval officer, lived in Japan four times (He’s fluent in Japanese!), has worked in healthcare construction and administration, and went to business school at Wake Forest University. Who knew that this would be the path to selling his first piece in August of 2013.
While interning for a construction company in Tokyo in 1999, Joel learned about the Shibui aesthetic, “…which consists of seven qualifiers: Simplicity, Implicitness, Modesty, Silence, Naturalness, Everydayness, and Imperfection.” I had to read this list many times for it to start sinking in. I like this philosophy a lot.
He strives for Shibui in his creations. He told me, “I think second chances and relationships are the heart of my work. I use flawed pieces of wood, scraps that would be burned, and fruit trees that are abandoned to infestation. The wood could not stand alone, typically next in line for the burn pile. The stones don’t make the cut as most cull through them. I take these two imperfect materials and marry them together. The wood provides a darkling and elegant structure that holds the stone together. The gems fill the emptiness of the timber with an astringent spontaneity and new life. Silent, simple, unobtrusive beauty.” Wow…I’m floored by this description.
Love this behind the scenes look at his workbench.
Here is a bangle made from the ivory wood of a spalted apple tree. I particularly enjoy the unique color of the wood, don’t you?
Since August began, my Instagram feed has been full of sparkling peridot jewlery, honoring the birthstone for the month of August. Around August third I had one of those “Doh!” moments. Here I’ve been blogging about jewelry for over four years, and never have I written a series of articles about the birthstones for each month. (Sometimes my blondness amazes me.) So I’m very excited to explore the gems for each month, and we start with the peridot, which I learned is one of the few gems that comes in only one color. Ranging from a lighter yellow-green to a dark olive, the depth of the green is determined by how much iron is in the stone.
Known as “the gem of the sun” and “the emerald of the evening,” the peridot apparently has many benefits to its wearer, including the following:
-Enhances harmony in relationships
-Attracts love into your life
What’s not to love about this list?! With that in mind, I started my search to see what fabulous peridot designs I could find. In no particular order, here’s eleven pieces that I would wear in a heartbeat.
Do you recall seeing Jennifer Hudson in this fabulous necklace at the Grammy’s? It was one of my favorite looks of the evening, and this year at Couture, I was able to meet Maral Artinian, the co-founder and curator of Marli, the name behind the diamonds.
When I first looked at her pyramid bracelets, I didn’t realize they had moving parts. Take a peek at this 9 second video that shows how they move.
I also have to share a couple avant garde ear cuffs with you. The first is from the Avventura (meaning adventure in Italian) collection. I can only imagine how the diamonds sway when you walk.