I have had a “thing” for tiaras as far back as I can remember. Why did I want to be a princess the Halloween of 1974? To wear a tiara, of course. (And the magic wand didn’t hurt either.) I recall my talented mom making my tiara and wand out of tin foil — she even made my gown out of an old sheet and felt shapes.
I vividly recall the first tiara I made myself in 2nd grade. I carefully cut out the front of it in a thin, flexible cardboard. After I cut it out, I patiently picked out all the silver sequins from my sequin box and glued them to the cardboard in just the right pattern. I then pilfered a piece of elastic from my mom’s sewing room, stapled it to the front, and voila, I was a princess. I wore that thing until it basically crumbled.
Flash foward to 1999, and I met a well known aura reader/psychic. One of the first things she told me was that I was royalty in a past life. Ahhh….this is suddenly making so much sense!
About 4 years ago, I went with my mom, brother, and his two kids to Disneyland. My niece, Estella, around 9 at the time, told me she wanted a tiara, not Mickey ears. I think I may have done a little happy dance. (Gotta love genetics!) “Of course!” I told her, “OK, now listen. We’re not going to get some cruddy little plastic tiara. We’re going to hold out and find the good ones, OK?” She was IN! Damn, I love that girl. Finally, we found it. A Swarovski crystal store, busting with tiaras well into the 1000’s of dollars. We both selected our perfect tiara, and I don’t think we took them off the rest of the trip, aside from when we were in the pool or on a big rollercoaster. And truth be told, we still wear them.
Tiaras just make the world a better place in my mind. Cleaning my house in one makes the process SO much more enjoyable — even though my boyfriend thought I was a nut when he saw me doing it. You should try it if you haven’t done so before. Even doing accounting in a tiara makes it almost bearable.
Within the past couple months, I’ve added two new tiaras to my collection. The first one came to my attention when my friend Becky, who writes Diamonds in the Library, wrote about it. (btw, you should definitely follow her, if you don’t already.) It’s from Australia, and it’s a collaboration between JY Jewels and Lady of Leisure Millinery. I think it’s such a cool, modern take on a classic. I got mine in the rose gold tone.
When I returned from Europe this month, I was perusing C Magazine, and came across Erica Elizabeth Designs. Her website is chockfull of dreamy headpieces, and I had to order this one…the Stargazer. (Remember how I’m completely crazy for all things celestial?!) And I was even able to select the color ribbon it is wrapped in so it would blend in with my hair.
Speaking of Europe, when I was visiting Kensington Palace in July, I was in awe of the tiaras in Queen Victoria’s exhibit. When the jewel room was quiet, the security guard told me about an amazing optical illusion. He pointed out exactly where to stand, and my brother took this shot of me, where it looks like I’m actually wearing the Fife Tiara. This just MAY be my new Facebook profile…perhaps.
So there it is — my confession. I love tiaras. I have always loved wearing them, and I think I always will. I wish I could wear them on a daily basis out and about. Now, I think I’ll decide which one to wear while I go prepare dinner.
As I sit down to write this article, I’m still recovering from the whirlwind weekend I just had in Beverly Hills. Did I really exchange words with Meryl Streep? Yep. And did I get a photo with Elizabeth Moss while she was holding her award? That happened. For a star-gazer like me, it’s all sort of a dream. So buckle in, my friends, this is going to be a long post, but hopefully an enjoyable one filled with lots of photos and tidbits.
It all started almost a year ago, when I became friends with some of the lovely employees at the Beverly Hilton while I was staying there during the Academy Awards. I found out that although the hotel is closed to the public during the Golden Globes, there are 100 packages which can be purchased to stay at the hotel and partake in some of of the festivities. After countless phone calls and months of waiting, I got the green light just after Thanksgiving. Woo hoo!
My mom and I flew down to LA on Friday, and already we were amazed to see the transformation taking place at the hotel. What was once a circular driveway was now a film set!
Here’s where a car typically drops you off to check into the hotel. But not today!
Take a gander at this short video I shot from the balcony of our hotel room. This is a major production, to say the least.
I couldn’t believe when a luggage cart of Golden Globe statues just rolled right on by…
We did take a little shopping break that day, so we headed to the parking garage to catch a ride in the hotel car. (Love that service!) And who did we encounter as we were sitting there? Oh, just Seth Meyers, the host of the show…no big-ee. I wished him good luck on the show, and received a winning smile, twinkling eyes and a heartfelt thank you in return. Yeah…that doesn’t happen every day.
My brother and sister-in-law flew down on Saturday to meet us. This was going to be a family affair! Finally it was Sunday, the big event. We had seats on the second row of the bleachers on the Red Carpet. It was an ideal place to sit, as not only could we see and interact with the stars on the carpet, but we were also the closet seats to the press photography area. Can you see what a fabulous view this will be of all the stars?
Here’s a little video from my seat showing you the lay of the land.
It was actually very warm when we first got to our seats — a sunny 75 degrees, but the stage lights made it even hotter. Fortunately, we didn’t have to be too dressed up for this part — that’ll come later.
Here’s the family, ready to see the celebs!
As the Red Carpet began filling up, many of the stars would come to the area right where we were seated to sign a huge board celebrating the 75th anniversary of the event. While they were in this area, you could exchange some words and snap some close-up photos. When Allison Janney was in front of me, I said, “Yay for tall girls!” She got a huge smile and this was her response. I have to say, she is truly luminescent in person — glowing from the inside.
Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel were just darling. They looked SO happy and loved the crowd cheering them on.
One thing I noticed was that you really catch different views of things when you’re there, versus seeing it on TV. For instance, when Debra Messing stopped to touch up her make-up before a photo op, I couldn’t help but notice how the sun gleamed through the giant emerald ring she was wearing on her right hand. Can you see it in the picture below?
When I heard that everyone was going to be wearing black to the Globes, I was definitely all for what it stands for, but I thought I might be disappointed not seeing the typical array of colored gowns. Although some have referred to it as looking like a funeral, I must disagree. First of all, people were very excited, and there was a palpable energy in the air. Also, I’ve never seen so many variations of black dresses in my life, and people really made it their own with their interpretations and accessories. I’m not sure if Nicole Kidman has been getting many kudos on her dress, but I have to say that she was so ethereal, floating down the carpet with her darling husband, Keith Urban. The diaphanous fabric right next her face really suited her delicate bone structure.
I couldn’t help but be wowed when Merly Streep went by.
When Mandy Moore came through, her Irene Neuwirth earrings simply gleamed in the sunlight.
Any fans of The Crown out there? Well Claire Foy and Matt Smith were awesome. They kept giggling, and it was clear they were enjoying the moment.
I was also thrilled to see the recently engaged Catriona Balfe, one of the stars of Outlander.
Two of the stars from Black-ish, Anthony Anderson and Laurence Fishburne, definitely hammed it up for us.
Sterling K. Brown (and his gorgeous wife Ryan) was smiling SO huge, I bet his cheeks hurt by the end of the night.
It was hysterical watching Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson waiting to get their photos taken. Tom kept pointing at his wife and making faces — totally in line with the personality you think he has after watching him on screen for so many years.
Loved how William Macy was showcasing his “TimesUp” pin during his photo session. A good portion of the attendees were wearing this powerful accessory.
As the carpet was winding down around 4:30-ish, Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw made an appearance, both seeming to enjoy the audience.
By the time everyone was inside, the signature board was completely full. I wonder where it’s going to reside??
So, after three hours on the carpet, and 100’s of photos taken, it was time to head inside. The show started promptly at 5. While they did have a viewing party with screens in the lobby, we opted to skip this and headed up to watch the show in our room, order room service dinner, and get all glammed up. I wanted to be outside the ballroom doors right when they opened and all the stars started flooding out!
We got there in time to have a family photo before the doors opened.
In no time at all, this is what the lobby looked like!
One of the cool things about this awards show is that all the after parties (in this case there were 8!) are held at the hotel. So for the rest of the night, the celebs just party hop, and you can interact with many of them as they cruise around. Granted, some had major security surrounding them, but others you could definitely approach.
Given that my word for 2018 is “fearless,” I really put that into action. I had a slightly teary conversation with the fabulous Chrissy Metz about her being such a wonderful role model to us curvy girls. She had been walking with a very handsome guy, and I asked if him if he could take our picture. She said, “You do know that he’s a movie star, right?” Well, actually I didn’t, and I asked him again. They both giggled and he happily took the photo. I wonder who it was…
Some Kind of Wonderful was one of my favorite movies back in the day, and I couldn’t believe one of the stars, Lea Thompson, (you may also know her from Back to the Future) was next to me in the bathroom line! Turns out she introduced me to her husband, who happened to produce that film — we had a conversation about how innovative it was to have a female drummer as one of the leads.
Another of my all-time favorite shows is Gilmore Girls. What a treat to meet Amy Sherman-Palladino, who won for the new show The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. (I binged and loved the whole season before heading to LA. I highly recommend it!)
Yay to Elisabeth Moss on her win! Loved that she was holding her statue during our photo.
I know that Connie Britton stirred up a lot of controversy with her sweater, but I enjoyed talking with her about it.
I, uh,…just maaaaaybe may have said a swear word when I saw Tracee Ellis Ross. (“Tracee, you are fu**ing awesome!”) But she didn’t seem to mind; in fact, she stopped and got a big smile on her face!
I don’t know about you, but I’ve become completely obsessed with This is Us. How gorgeous is Susan Kelechi Watson, who plays Sterling K. Brown’s wife on the show?!
Last, and certainly not least, I cannot tell you the power that emanated from the incomparable Viola Davis. Wow!! And side note, I thought her layers of diamond necklaces were out of this world — fave jewelry look of the night, for sure.
I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning and had a tough time sleeping after such an exciting day and night. The next morning, as I got ready to leave the hotel, it was a bit sad to see the show set being dismantled…
Now, it’s back to reality. But I know this is an experience that I will never forget!!
I’m definitely having a moment with all things celestial — stars, the moon, constellations, etc. I’ve clearly got my head in the clouds! And there are SO many great options out there to satisfy my celestial cravings. I wanted to share 11 items with you which I absolutely adore. In no particular order, here they are.
These “written in the stars” rings from Sofia Zakia are just amazing. You can pick two different constellations, and she’ll combine them on one band. How cool is that?! I can picture them as wedding rings, friendship rings, or even one combining one’s parent’s or children’s constellations. Ok, I’ll stop gushing now.
I admit that while I covet this jacket from L’Agence, even the large doesn’t fit me. *drats* BUT…I was able to fulfill my fantasy through my client, who looked absolutely stellar in it. She’s pairing it with everything from a camouflage slip dress to a tee and jeans. Super versatile.
Rails has quite a few styles of shirts with stars on them, but I think this shirt jacket with star patches is my fave. When I’m not in black, grey or white, army green is my go-to color.
Sirciam has been a long-time favorite with their rose gold celestial pieces. This particular ring is a real winner in my book. Even though it’s a larger scale ring, it works perfectly for every day. And yes, I have yet another client who will attest to that fact.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you know I buy myself a “boyfriend gift” for various occasions. I mean really, why should I have no boyfriend AND no jewelry?! I can’t control the boyfriend part, but I can certainly buy myself jewelry! I await the arrival of my own Samantha Knight pendant with my lucky number 13 on it to celebrate the holidays.
Luckily, I did find the perfect pair of star jeans that actually came in a size 16. Score! Loving my new Mia star print jeans from Kut. I put them with a distressed over-sized light blue chambray shirt and felt awesome.
Honestly, this is just the tip of the starry iceberg. There are SO many options out there in clothing, jewelry and accessories, I could go quite crazy. What about you? Do you have any celestial cravings? I’d love to hear from you in the comment section.
These past few days, as the weather is finally turning to fall here in northern California, my mind has been focusing on neutral tones and feeling cozy. I think it’s a combination of all the craziness going on in the world and the cooler temps that has me wanting to hunker down and feel grounded. This starts by deciding what gems I want on my body, and what colors and fabrics give me this feeling. My current answer? Grey. It’s soothing, serene, and full of depth. I absolutely adore grey diamonds, and I long to have more of them in my life. Here are a few grey diamond rings that truly call to my soul.
Alexis Russell always wows me with their combination of bands and stones.
And what do I want to wear with these rings? Well given that it’s that seasonal transition time, I want to make some white J Brand crop flared jeans work with the cooler weather. Yes, us Californians DO wear white after Labor Day! To do this, I’d trade my summery tops for a chunky grey cashmere turtleneck (this one is Barney’s own line), some distressed Marsell boots (one of my go-to shoe brands) and top it off with a Faliero Sarti scarf. Yummy, right? And the boots don’t have to be the same exact tone of the sweater — just neutrals that blend.
So back to some more grey diamond rings. Communion by Joy has been on my jewelry lust list for quite some time. The design of the settings, the textures and the stones are so unique. Here’s their Royal Guardian Rustic Diamond Ring.
Oh, and a couple tips from the wardrobe stylist about the Golden Goose sneakers — I’m addicted to them. (I have three pair!) BUT, I hate the sole insert they come with. They have a very raised heel and are uncomfortable for me. So, I toss those and put in a pair of Superfeet insoles. And voila, they’re perfect. AND…since I don’t like going sockless and those little ballet flat peds never stay put, I swear by Hue’s hi cut peds. They work perfectly, and the high profile on the top works just right with sneakers.
So now you know what’s been on my mind. I hope you’ve enjoyed this peek inside my thoughts. Now, I’m going to spend the rest of the day getting my closet ready for the season — packing away my linens, sandals and summer items, and pulling out the boots and flannel. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for the change!
When I began planning my adventure in Scotland, I naturally asked all my friends for advice on where to go. A friend of a friend said I HAD to visit the Isle of Iona, as it was a completely magical place. OK…so I got out the map and located it. Hmm…it was part of the Hebrides Islands, a little isle off the coast of the Isle of Mull, off the coast of Oban. It didn’t sound like the easiest place to get to, but I was determined to make it happen. And, it turned out it wasn’t as difficult as I originally thought.
To get to Iona, I purchased a full day, round trip tour from West Coast tours. I bought my ticket almost 6 months in advance (not that you have to), and I lucked out big time on the weather — cool and sunny! We departed Oban just before 10 in the morning and enjoyed a scenic 50 minute ferry ride to Craignure on the Isle of Mull. From there, I hopped on a bus and took an hour and half drive across the ruggedly beautiful Isle of Mull. The driver gave an informative and sometimes humorous commentary during the journey.
Then it’s just a a 15 minute ferry ride over to Iona. Once I debarked in Iona, I just started walking. I knew the main thing I wanted to see was the Abbey, but you never know what you’ll encounter along the way. And what did I find??? An incredible jewelry gallery, Aosdana! Honestly, this was about the last thing I ever thought I’d find on this remote island.
Aosdana “derives from an ancient Gaelic word and is the collective term for the bards of old whose role was to record the histories and genealogies of the land, through poetry and music.” It all started with local jewelry designers, Alex and Euphemia Ritchie and Iain McCormick. In 1996, Iain gave a young female relative, Mhairi Killin, the wealth of his expertise and designs. In 2003 Mhairi opened Aosdana, where she showcases this work, as well as the work of many other Scottish artists. I was extremely impressed by the gallery, both in its clean displays and breadth in style of work. Here’s a peek inside the gallery.
I was very drawn to this zoomorphic ring with a dark finish. Its pattern was so much more complex than any Celtic design I’d seen before, and I learned it symbolizes renewal of life and eternity of spirit. Love it even more!
I was also intrigued by the green stones in many of the pieces, such as in this charm bangle. I discovered that these stones are often referred to as “St. Columba’s tears” by the locals, and they sometimes carry of piece of it in their pockets to ward off drowning. It’s a mixture of serpentine and white marble, and it naturally occurs in shades from lime to dark green.
As I strolled around the gallery, I couldn’t help but admire a large statement necklace hanging on the wall by Kelly Munro. This “creel” necklace is made of brass, rubber and wood. It could easily function as a piece of art if displayed when you’re not wearing it.
I also think the handcrafted silver work by Susan Macleod is quite lovely. Here’s her Sweet Pea & Pearl necklace.
Another artist who uses wood in her jewelry is Cristina Zani. I think it’s so pretty how she carves the wood and then uses paint and gold leaf to make it an organically beautiful centerpiece.
Grace Girvan uses pebbles from the beaches of Iona in her designs — here’s one featuring two stones with fascinating patterns.
If you find yourself on the Isle of Iona, you definitely have to visit the Abbey. (It’s just up the road from Aosdana.) It was founded back in 565 AD, and it’s still in use today. Can you imagine going to services in such an ancient building? There was moss and ferns sprouting from the interior walls — truly a mystical place!
When walking back to the ferry landing from the Abbey, you’ll pass Aosdana, and shortly thereafter come upon the Iona Heritage Centre. I found this a perfect spot for an alfresco cheese toastie for lunch. (translation: grilled cheese sandwich)
As I waited for my ferry back to Mull, I couldn’t help but get lost gazing into the crystal clear and frigid waters.
I’m so grateful that I followed the advice of my friend of a friend to visit this charming isle. If you find yourself visiting and you’re looking for a great place to stay in Oban, I highly recommend Greystones. This immaculate, modern boutique hotel, run by Mark and Suzanne, has five rooms. It’s the former private home of the director of Kimberley Diamond Mine. (Quite perfect for a jewelry blogger, don’t you think?!) I can’t rave over the views enough — and the yummy breakfast!
For drinks, enjoy the outdoor area at Oban Inn (established in 1790!), and then have a delicious seafood dinner at Eeusk.
Part of my job as a personal wardrobe stylist is packing my clients for trips. I seem to be doing a lot of this lately, and when it comes to the jewelry, there are quite a few things to consider. I thought I’d share some of these points to ponder with you, as you may find yourself packing a suitcase for a trip of your own this summer!
Your destination should determine what jewelry you bring
Are you going to a luxury resort on the French Riviera? Then perhaps you’ll need to up your glitz game! Are you going to visit the rainforest in South America? Then a waterproof sport watch and stud earrings may be all you really need. I always advise bringing the fewest number of pieces necessary no matter what your destination, especially if you’ll have to cart around luggage to multiple locations.
Think about the security of where you’ll be traveling
In the example of a high end resort, there’s likely to be a safe in the room or at the front desk where you can store your unworn jewelry. On a more rustic trip, I wouldn’t risk bringing any superfluous items; perhaps stick to one look that you’ll wear everyday, or perhaps complement it with some inexpensive necklace that you wouldn’t mind “losing.”
Consider the message your jewelry is sending
I have one client who brings 4 carat CZ stud earrings no matter where she goes. Sure, these earrings don’t necessarily cost a lot, but they are still flashy. And honestly, no one knows whether they are “real” or not — I think she’s tempting fate. When you think about your destination, do you want to draw attention to yourself? Or blend in? I recall a time in my 20’s when I was at the train station in Naples, Italy. A local approached me and said I shouldn’t be wearing the jewelry I had on, as it was tempting to thieves. And what did I have on? Simply a pair of $18 silver hoops, a few silver rings and a silver bangle. Interesting. In my book, this was a very low key (and inexpensive) look, but I never considered that the image I was projecting to those in the train station might be read differently.
How are you going to transport your jewelry?
First and foremost, your jewelry should travel on your physical body or in your carryon. Absolutely NO jewelry in your checked luggage…EVER!! I had one client who was traveling with just a few inexpensive necklaces. She ignored my advice and put them in her checked bag. I was not surprised to hear that when she arrived at her destination, not only was her jewelry missing, but a few other items as well. When the baggage handlers see jewelry in a bag, they don’t know if it’s valuable or not. Why tempt people??
My latest find is a travel jewelry box I picked up for $19.99 at the Container Store. It’s the mini lidded stacker in mink, and it’s been working like a charm! I like that it’s a solid box, so I don’t worry about jewelry getting bent in a jewelry roll. It’s small enough to tuck into my purse, and the lid stays very securely snapped closed. I use the ring area for my earrings as well. The only downside is that it doesn’t accommodate bangles, but I can work around that.
What about the jewelry you leave at home?
This is a VERY important thing to consider in these days of social media. Even though security experts advise you not to post any travel photos on social media until you are back at home, that’s pretty darn hard to do. If you’re gazing out at the most spectacular sunset over the Grand Canyon, I dare you not to press the “share” button on Instagram! In addition, everyone’s address is public knowledge. So if you post, thieves will know you’re gone and they know your address. The solution? Keep all your jewelry under lock and key, either in a safe (bolted to the ground or in a wall), your safety deposit box, or off the premises entirely. I know this sounds extreme, but I think it’s crucial. In addition, make sure your jewelry insurance policy is up to date. (For more info on this, refer this article from 2016.)
I know this is a lot to think about, but in my book, planning your jewelry is just as important as planning your clothing. I’d love to hear any other tips you have on this topic in the comment section below. And if you’re going away this summer, I wish you an amazing journey!
Also, I won’t be blogging regularly for the month of July, but I’ll be back full force in August. Know that you can always get your dose of bling on my Instagram and Facebook page.
-Clean my apartment
-Write a blog post; make it an extra-special one, as JewelryFashionTips.com turns SIX this week! (How did time fly so quickly?!)
-Work out/go to my barre class
-Eat a healthy dinner
This is how the day actually went down:
-Sleep in till a little after 9
-Have a leisurely morning in my pj’s
-Go to lunch with my mom at the Pancake House (translation: not the healthiest of choices, but yummy)
-Hang out with mom, just chatting in her family room
-Take a long, hot shower when I get home (2nd one of the day — it is allergy season, after all)
-Put my pjs back on, even though it’s only about 4:00
-Read magazines for a couple hours on my couch (technically, this counts as work-related)
-Watch TV (Did anyone else see the finale of Big Little Lies?! OMG!!)
-Get in bed at 8:30 and read Outlander (finally on book 8) for three hours
As you can see, I didn’t accomplish a single thing on my to do list, but you know what? It’s OK. The world kept spinning, and when I got up the next day, no calamity had ensued. And on the bright side, I had a joyful, relaxing day. I DID accomplish things, just not the things I had necessarily thought I would.
I think having down time is severely underrated in our society, especially for women. It’s always rush, rush, rush — with everyone complaining about how busy they are. It’s almost a badge of honor to be worn out. How did this EVER become OK?? I am very NOT OK with it, and I’m making a concerted effort to take plenty of me time, say “no” when I want to, and make decisions in my best interest, even if they turn out disappointing some people. This is especially tough for me, as I tend to be a people-pleaser. I’m sure I’m not the only one out there, right?
Writing a blog is such an interesting endeavor. I take joy in sharing amazing jewlery with my readers and telling stories that may never otherwise be told. I truly do it as a labor of love, as I don’t necessarily earn money from it. But I have also noticed a big change in the world of blogging. “Traditional” blogs like mine, with long-ish written articles are losing some steam. More visual, quick bites are what’s getting the traffic. That’s why I’ve increased my presence on Instagram and continued with my daily images on Facebook. It’s also why I’ve reduced my twice-weekly article schedule to once a week, at most. I’m not planning on going anywhere, just switching it up a bit in how I share the sparkle. In addition, this new arrangement is allowing me a little extra time for myself each week.
I hope that you can take a look at your schedule and see if you’re getting enough YOU time. And if you’re not, I’m confident you can find a way to make it happen. You deserve it. Sending you love from my dusty apartment!
I first met Michelle around 2000. I recall that the first year or so we knew each other, her wardrobe uniform included a fitted black Prada t-shirt, and virtually no jewelry. Seriously, no sparkle! It’s been such a treat to see how Michelle’s style has evolved over the years, and I now consider her one of the most avant-garde dressers I know. Granted, she is in the fashion industry, but Michelle does not let trends dictate what she wears. I’ve seen her dive into both color and gems the past 17+ years and truly discover her own personal style. Lucky me — I got to spend an hour exploring her jewlery box and hearing about her favorite pieces for this latest installment of Into the Jewelry Box.
When Michelle met me at the door, she was in a Saturday casual chic look which included an Avant Toi sweater topped with a knotted chain necklace with a singular Tahitian pearl. She told me, “It’s messy and old…I’ve had it for over 10 years…and I love it.” Now that’s a good return on investment, still wearing it a decade later.
She complemented the easy look with a pair of pave diamond studs. These earrings get a lot of mileage in her wardrobe, as they go everywhere from spin class to traveling the globe.
I was lusting after this other pair of diamond slice studs nestled in her jewelry box — what a fabulous, warm glow! These were purchased on a trip to India.
Another pair of her everyday earrings are these luscious grey drops from Larkspur & Hawk. I can see how they’d just meld with whatever she decided to wear that day.
I hadn’t been to Michelle’s house in years, but it didn’t surprise me to see her jewelry collection was as edited as she keeps her closet. She chooses to buy fewer pieces, but fabulous pieces. I asked her what her most worn items are in the current rotation. First and foremost is the “rolling” bracelet by Sidney Garber.
She first saw this bracelet in Aspen, where one of her friends was wearing it. At first she didn’t “get it,” but then her eye started seeing it paired with The Row and other key designers, and suddenly she had a big “ah ha!” and had to purchase one for herself. It is now her #1 favorite piece of jewelry she owns. She likened the phenomenon to skinny jeans. Remember how when they first hit the scene we cringed while wearing our boot-cut jeans? Then when our eye and mind got used to them, they were suddenly a staple.
Michelle also has two long necklaces which she frequently layers together. One is a golden hand on a long leather cord, and the other is a gold Irene Neuwirth chain with two brightly colored pendants. And all together, they totally work on her!
She found a pair of amethyst Judy Geib earrings that really play back well with the whole jewelry ensemble. They “go” but they’re not totally matchy-matchy, if you know what I mean.
Michelle also has a real affinity for the fashion jewelry from Bottega Veneta. She’s acquired a nice collection of their drop earrings, as well as a very cool bracelet with green accents. These are easy for her to mix and match with her scarf collection.
Speaking of earrings, she has a few pair that are extra-special. When I asked about her strategy for jewlery acquisition, she explained, “I’m clothes-driven. I just LOVE clothes. I buy the outfit first, and then I go about finding the right jewelry.” This is how she ended up with these crazy-cool Nak Armstrong earrings, purchased to complement her mother-of-the-groom outfit for her son’s wedding. I took a photo of them on top of the Gucci skirt she wore. Once again, you can see how she just nailed the blended color palette.
Here’s another standout pair of earrings, this time labradorite by Irene Neuwirth. These are generally reserved for more special occasions.
One of the things I really admire about Michelle’s collection is that it really isn’t full of “basics.” In fact, most pieces have a very distinct personality, just like she does. Have you ever though about having a fly on a necklace? And that it would be one of your go-to pieces? Neither had I, but she bought this Stephen Webster fly necklace and it has become a staple. Who would have thought?
Or what about a multi-strand necklace embellished with crystal evil eyes on pearls? Sounds a bit out there? Well not in this case — in her wardrobe it’s spot on perfect.
I have to say, that getting an inside look into Michelle’s jewelry collection has really got me thinking. Perhaps I should consider adding more color to my jewelry? Does this fit into my personal style? I certainly tend towards buying neutrals. Also, if I see a piece that truly speaks to me, yet it’s more “quirky” than I would normally buy, I’m going to analyze it before automatically dismissing it — would it blend with my wardrobe? Where could I see myself wearing it? All things to ponder.
Thanks to Michelle for allowing me to invade her jewelry box. I love the collection you’ve built, and I’ll be anxious to see what you acquire next!
This graphic is inspired by one I saw on the Instagram page of Sparrow. While it certainly gave me a chuckle, it also hit very close to home. I have often found myself in this very situation while gazing at some dreamy piece of jewelry I’m just dying to take home with me. This is when it’s VERY important to remember the cost-per-wear principle.
Most of my clients have internalized this concept, as I often bring it up when we’re out on our shopping excursions. Basically, it boils down to how much does the item cost, and how often will you wear it?
Let’s take an example of a $500 necklace. If you purchase it and only wear it twice, then the cost-per-wear is $250. That’s a mighty pricey necklace!
Using that same $500 necklace as an example, let’s say it turns into one of your daily basics, and the first year you own it you wear it 300 times. Then, the cost-per-wear on this necklace is now only $1.67. Are you following me?
Of course, there are many more factors that go into deciding whether or not to make a purchase, such as do you LOVE it, can you actually afford it, will it work seamlessly in your wardrobe, etc. But considering the cost-per-wear is crucial, unless you’ve got one of those bottomless wallets I often dream of.
The bottom line is the more you spend on something, then the more you should wear it so that the cost-per-wear goes down, making it a much wiser purchase than something you simply leave in your jewelry box or closet. Don’t save anything “for good,” as many of us were taught. Wear the diamonds, use the fancy towels, and eat off the “good” dishes every day. What are you waiting for? You deserve it. Not only will you enjoy it, but you’ll also be making an economical decision.
How can it be that six days in Las Vegas for Jewelry Week flew by so quickly?!? Here I sit, back in my apartment, when just a 6 hours ago I was having lunch at the Wynn with some amazing jewelry industry peeps. I will admit I got a bit teary upon take-off, seeing the Wynn and Mandalay Bay shimmering in the distance, knowing I was leaving without doing and seeing all I wanted to, which is always the case when I attend the Couture Show and JCK. It will be strange not putting one of these badges around my neck tomorrow morning.
But on the upside, I have to say it was probably my most memorable trip to the shows ever. Part of this is that since it was my 5th year attending, I know an increasing number of designers, press, and show staff, so it’s just wonderful to see all of them. I also noticed what a difference social media made in my experience this year. I’ve become online friends with so many jewelry industry people, and I feel as if I’ve gotten to know them on a very personal level, from their grandkids to their vacations to special moments in their lives. More than once, when I saw one of these “virtual friends” in the flesh, we embraced with the biggest of hugs, bringing the online friendship live. It was truly awesome!
And then there’s the jewelry … and this year just blew me away. I cannot WAIT to share all the fresh content with you. I think you’ll be dazzled by what I saw and tried on. Big, bold and colorful to dainty, neutral and sparkly, I saw a l.o.t! So stay tuned for next week, when I’ll begin sharing all my bling-tactic discoveries. Is your interest piqued? I hope so! And if you want a little taste of what I saw, check out my Instagram feed for some teasers.