Hawaiian Bangles

If you follow my Jewelry Fashion Tips Facebook page (and if you don’t, “like” it right away — there’s tons of goodies on it!), then you know that I was enjoying myself in Hawaii last week. I was staying with friends who live there, so one of my first stops was the local grocery store to stock up on my fave foods. The cashier’s wrists caught my eye right away, adorned in traditional gold Hawaiian bracelets.

Traditional Hawaiian Bracelets
Traditional Hawaiian Bracelets

Known as Hawaiian Heirloom Bracelets, they are inscribed with names and sentiments just for the person who wears them. They first became popular back in the 1860’s, and their popularity certainly doesn’t seem to have waned. I saw them all over Oahu on wrists of all ages!

During my stay on the island, I noticed yet another Hawaiian bracelet trend — lovely slim bangles, either in silver or gold, enhanced with a single charm. I saw charms ranging from shells to Tahitian pearls to sea glass. While in Sand People (a popular beach-themed chain store on the islands) in Kailua, I saw these lovely examples with Tahitian pearls designed by Oahu-based Beach Girl Jewels.

Simply elegant!
Simply elegant!

I was also on the lookout for bangles by Hula Hoops, which is a Maui-based designer, as this is where my friend Jeanette found some beauties! When she stacks a bunch of them together, here’s how it looks.

Jeanette's "simple" stack
Jeanette’s “simple” stack

When she takes it a step further, incorporating other bracelets, the result is simply stunning!

Totally unique and fabulous stack!
Totally unique and fabulous stack!

I must admit, that I did come back to the mainland with a singular bangle. (Aren’t you immensely impressed with my restraint?!) I’ve decided that I will add additional bangles on future trips. Meanwhile, I look forward to adding my new “addition” to some of my creative bracelet combinations. Aloha!

Stacked Bangles with Style: Jewelry Judge

It’s on those rare days when the escalator is down that I find myself in the elevator at a department store. But today, this unexpected detour gave me the chance to see some chic arm candy.

The perfect mix
The perfect mix

While her over-all image is very cosmopolitan and refined (right down to her Prada bag) the stack she put together has a little bit of a global vibe, which really adds dimension to her appearance. I think I could tell a lot about her without even exchanging words. Well done!

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!

Age-Appropriate Jewelry

Trust me, as a 43 year-old woman I’m constantly aware of dressing both myself and my clients in a hip, yet age-appropriate way. Is the skirt too short? Too much cleavage showing? Do any of my friends’ daughters wear this? These are all questions which constantly run through my head when styling. Believe it or not, this also extends to one’s jewelry choices each day.

There are a multitude of fun jewelry trends out there right now, some of which I’ve written about, such as brightly colored jewelry and the art deco craze. I basically feel that the younger you are, the more license you have to experiment with trends — it’s the time where you’re really trying to nail down your sense of personal style.

Here’s the wrist of a 19 year-old I spotted in San Francisco. The neon pink bracelet from Charlotte Russe paired with the silver charm bracelet from Juicy Couture just seemed “right”…remember…she’s 19…

juicy couture jewelry
Perfect for a 19 year-old

And while out and about in Palo Alto I spied this stylish 23 year-old who was rocking both stacking bracelets and the neon trend. Again, I loved it…for her.

age appropriate jewelry
Some summer fun!

But then…there are those times when a poor choice is made. While I know Hello Kitty is more than just a crush for some (I have a dear friend with a tasteful Hello Kitty tattoo), I find it highly inappropriate when an adult adorns herself with said cat in not just glittery earrings, but also with Hello Kitty bedazzled hair clips. Really?! I’m not sure this woman has clearly thought about the image she wants to portray. And really, she was a darling woman.

hello kitty jewelry
My 7 year-old niece would love this

So tomorrow morning when you head for your jewelry box, I urge you to take some time to think about your personal style and what your jewelry will be saying about you before you even open your mouth. Because trust me, jewelry talks!

Bountiful Bracelets: Jewelry Judge

While browsing the shops in Los Altos, CA over the weekend, I was completely impressed with the way this young woman stacked her bracelets! The way she combined earth tones of vintage and new created perfect harmony and visual interest. The one furthest up her arm belonged to her mother, the gold bangle in the middle she received in 5th grade, the woven one is by Tai, and the one closest to her wrist is by DanniJo. Bravo!

stacked bracelets
An inspired combination!