Jewellery for a Classic Style

Jewellery for a Classic Style

 
Are you a Classic?

 

Do you wear Classic pieces that have stood the test of time and become staples in many women’s wardrobes?  These pieces get an update every now and then and even sometimes find themselves the height of fashion on the catwalk but essentially they are timeless,   they don’t date but remain chic, smart and in many ways empowering.   Many women find themselves with a dual personality style as the Classic look works well in a corporate environment but may get ditched for something completely different at the weekend.  Don’t think for one minute though that the Classic look can’t handle days of leisure.  Those who have mastered this style look trés chic and pulled together, whatever the occasion.  

 

 

Staples items for the Classic Wardrobe include:

 

A well cut blazer worn as a suit or with jeans; crisp white shirt paired with an elegant skirt;  tailored trousers or jeans;  cashmere jumpers (roll necks, v necks, crew necks and cardigans!);  the Little Black Dress for a business look or sassy date night; the Breton top (made mainstream by Coco Channel in 1917, now stocked by just about every High Street brand); ballet flats (made famous by French film star Brigitte Bardot in the 1950’s and still going strong); simple black heels (from kitten heels to stilettos); trench coat and so on.

 

So what are the classic pieces of jewellery?

 

 

1. Diamonds (or Crystals)

They say that diamonds are a girl’s best friend but not many of us have the occasion to wear a diamond necklace; earrings however are a different thing.  A pair of diamond studs will see you through important meetings, weekend outings and even special dates.  However these are not in the budget for many and to be honest, at the risk of upsetting people, CZ these days is such good quality that I defy almost anyone to tell the difference and for a mere fraction of the price!

2. Pearls

Pearls are as iconic as diamonds and a great alternative option.  Pearl earrings can take you anywhere, whether a stud or a beautifully elongated symmetrical drop and with a little black dress you can’t go wrong with a string of pearls.  Of course you can pay a fortune for the roundest South Sea Pearls but today the standard of Freshwater Pearls, found in the lakes and rivers of China has dramatically improved making rounder, lustrous pearls available to the more modest budget;  Baroque pearls, a slightly elongated irregular shape, are widely used now in Designer jewellery due to their unique character.  You can even combine pearls with sparkle for the best of both worlds.  

3. Pendants

Sometimes subtlety is called for, a simple chain with an interesting pendant for that pared back look or something with just enough sparkle to add a bit of glamour for day to evening.   

4. A long necklace

There is always going to be an occasion when a long necklace is needed, whether something with a long chain and larger pendant or a long string of pearls/precious stones.  With jeans and a t shirt or over a cashmere jumper a long necklace can look stunning and they are perfect with high necklines or to jazz up a very simple outfit

 

5. Bracelets

Often overlooked but a bracelet or 2 should definitely be part of your Classic collection. In the office some bracelets are not always practical so consider this when making your choice but a bracelet can make more of an impact than you think even if it’s a simple pendant bracelet.  Choose one to be your ‘signature’ bracelet that you can wear with pretty much anything.  

 

6. Statement

It’s always good to have a really fabulous statement piece in your collection for that really special occasion.  Of 

 

So ladies, if your style is classic you have much to choose from to complete your look with timeless pieces like these.  Be inspired!

 

 

Why wear jewellery?

Why wear jewellery?

Many of us wear jewellery without thinking about it.  We perceive it as an essential part of our wardrobe; that an outfit is just incomplete without it.  You won’t be surprised to hear that I’m one of these! Others though see it as just a superficial adornment, frivolous, superfluous!  So just why should we take jewellery seriously?

Where did it start?

Let’s first explore when we first started to wear jewellery.    Its history began c 75000 years ago with the earliest pieces made from animal hide, leather or reeds decorated with things like animal teeth, bones, feathers, pebbles, shells etc. Many animals have inbuilt displays to attract the opposite sex so it may be that early jewellery was the equivalent of peacock feathers!  Over the centuries we graduated, as they were discovered, to using precious metals and gemstones.  From the Ancient Civilisations to the Royal Courts of Europe the designs became more elaborate and the workmanship more complex with ‘competitions’ to outdo each other as they displayed their symbols of wealth and status.   Jewellery also became a symbol of love and the ability to provide for the chosen recipient.

Of course religion too played a big part in the design of jewellery with strict rules governing who could wear what in the worship of the Ancient gods, leading to the very specific symbols of faith used by the religions more prevalent today.  As our ancestors became more self aware jewellery became a means of self expression and communicating identity and so here we are today still making jewellery out of almost every material known! Wherever you are in the world you will see jewellery with dramatic differences in style and appearance dependant upon the country, the culture and the materials available locally.

The power of jewellery

As well as being a status of wealth, for 1000’s of years jewellery has also been worn to gain from its energy and power – through talismans, healing crystals, amulets, chakra jewellery and so on.  Ancient beliefs that still exist today suggest jewellery can protect, bring love, energy,  luck and healing.  Religions down the ages have used jewellery to express faith, to honour certain gods and be integral to various ceremonies.  Symbols on pieces of jewellery can also project a message about the wearer to the world, a declaration of intent, love or family connection. Giving jewellery can serve as a very personal way of expressing love, affection, pride or admiration.

 

 

Major religious and other spiritual symbols

 

 

Muru Talisman pendants

Left to right Talismans for Prosperity, Love, Positivity and Intuition 

 

Rachel Jackson Mantra

More than just an adornment

It has stood the test of time and shows no signs of ever going away.  As a species we are conditioned with various needs.  The basic being food, drink and shelter, followed by the need to reproduce but we also have ‘higher’ social needs which include romantic interaction, the need for social and self esteem.  Just as wearing certain types of clothes can project an image, make the wearer look and feel more confident so too can jewellery. It can take an outfit from boring to fabulous.  Designs can be delicate or bold, colourful or subdued, intricate and expensive or simple and economical.

Jewellery can be seen as a reflection of a personality, expressing who you are (or who you would like to be!).  It is personal and meaningful, a communication of style.  It can create memories, be transformative.  It is so much more than just an accessory, it is an art form and one of the most important and nowadays affordable, components of your wardrobe but don’t take my word for it.   Here’s what some other say…….

“Jewellery is the most transformative thing you can wear” …………                                       

Iris Apfel, accidental icon

“Jewellery has the power to be the one little thing that makes you feel unique”……….

Elizabeth Taylor,  actress and icon

“Jewellery is like the perfect spice – it always complements whats already there”………

Diane Von Furstenberg, Belgian American fashion designer

“Accessories are what, in my opinion, pull the whole look together and make it unique”……..

Yves St Laurent, French fashion designer

“Jewellery tells a story without even a single word – a non verbal communication of style”………

Michael, Rosey West, jewellery designer

“I see bold accessories as a woman’s armour”……..

Rachel Zoe, fashion designer

“I’ve always thought of accessories as the exclamation point of a woman’s outfit”…….

Michael Kors, fashion designer

“Clothes without accessories is like sex without orgasm!”…….

Robert Lee Morris, renowned jewellery designer and sculptor

“Jewellery is the last thing left of most civilisations”……..

Theo Fennel, British jewellery designer

 

Now tell me what YOU think!

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What jewellery to wear this festival season

What jewellery to wear this festival season

The Festival season has already started in some parts of the country and no longer are these the playgrounds of the very young.  Just as style is ageless so too is the love of music and dancing and so the Baby Boomers (of which I’m one!) and Generation X are just as likely to be found at a music festival as the Millennials!

Not surprising either when you see just how many festivals there are to choose from these days from Folk to Rock, from Blues to Country, there’s something for everyone and whether you go for just a day or the whole weekend, it’s an opportunity to rediscover that rock chick or that boho hippy, let your hair down and celebrate the music in an atmosphere of joy!

Boho style is the most prevalent at festivals.  Lots of denim of course, shorts, floaty dresses but whatever you wear  you can make anything work with the right accessories even if you end up having to wear the old wellies!

Get stacking……

Bracelets and lots of them are a must! For an authentic boho look you can’t do better than Boho Betty. Adorn your wrists (both of them!) in leather wraps, beads and tassels to your hearts content. Here are just a few examples…..

Boho Betty Beaded Friendship Bracelet Multi                Boho Betty Triple Leather Wrap Blue/CreamBoho Betty Pink Beaded Tassel Bracelet

Reeves & Reeves offer a variety of Friendship bracelets to add to your stack in some great colours in both leather and cord.

Reeves & Reeves Leather Lobster Clasp Friendship Bracelet Assorted Colours

 

For touch of class and a meaningful sentiment add in a simple Talisman bracelet from Muru in Vermeil with semi precious stones such as this Feather which is the Talisman of Positivity or the Elephant for Strength and Determination.

 

Muru Talisman Stretch Bracelet with Feather Charm Muru Talisman Stretch Bracelet with Elephant Charm

 

…….and layering

So what about necklaces? Again you can turn to Boho Betty for some beautiful, colourful, long beads and tassels to really catch the Bohemian vibe.

Boho Betty Happy Beaded Necklace with Metallic blue tasselBoho Betty Maat Fluor Pink Tassel Necklace

 

Boho Betty Aziza Chain Necklace with Coral TasselsBoho Betty Bahiti Green Tassel Necklace

 

Of course you don’t have to go with tassels, you can layer just as well with beads and metal.  Just ensure different textures as well as different lengths and don’t space out too evenly.  You want a relaxed thrown on look.

A favourite of mine at the moment for in the neck is this Venetian Coin style necklace from Mark Watson available in Gold or Silver tone and for a mid length this Gold Patina Ball Pendant.

Venetian Coin Necklace                     Gold Patina Ball Pendant by Mark Watson

 

For more general info on layering read the blog here.

Earrings with impact

Tassels can also adorn the ears.  Below are examples from Mark Watson and Boho Betty, both of which have matching necklaces!

Mark Watson Sandra Long Tassel EarringsBoho Betty Aqua Tassel Earrings

The best alternative to tassels has to be hoops and for a real impact these Rachel Jackson Punk Hoops are perfect or smaller but nonetheless head turning, these 3D orb earrings also from Rachel Jackson.

Rachel Jackson Large Punk Hoops                 Rachel Jackson 3D Orb earrings

 

Here’s hoping for the sunshine, but if you do end up covered in mud, with these accessories you’ll still look great and they’ll be an asset to your holiday wardrobe too!!

For the full  Sophisticato Festival Collection click here

For more information on where all the Festivals are happening this year click here

 

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Bracelets and how to wear them

Bracelets and how to wear them

photography credit - kerry j photography

 

Bracelets are not something I always wear, unlike earrings (wouldn’t leave home without those!) and for a lot of people they are often an afterthought but they are a wonderful way to enhance your outfit and add individuality.   If you find it difficult to choose the appropriate style here are a few tips and ideas:

Simple, sophisticated office style

The office isn’t necessarily the place for noisy bangles clunking together nor large chunky bracelets that are obtrusive and irritating clinking against your desk, so choose a stylish single bracelet that will add some sophistication and charm to your corporate outfit, that sits well at the end of a jacket sleeve.

A simple chain bracelet with a single charm will do this job very well or go for something with a little more interest and texture,  with understated sophistication.

Hummingbird bracelet from Sophisticato.uk

Muru Feather bracelet from Sophisticato.uk

Tara Kirkpatrick bracelet from Sophisticato.ukPictured above left to right Cinderela B Hummingbird, Tara Kirkpatrick Wire Balls & Muru Feather Talisman

For something that will take you seamlessly from the office to a bar or restaurant add a little sparkle with something like these pretty cz bracelets from Nour London

Nour London Bracelets from Sophisticato.uk

Stacked bracelets for casual chic

Bracelet stacking is a continuing jewellery trend that is likely to remain with us for some time. It allows you to showcase your individual style and can be great fun mixing colours, widths and styles to team with most outfits.

Getting started with stacking is effortless;  just start with 2 or 3 and build up!  First, choose a theme such as colour or materials and choose bracelets that complement each other but don’t match each other perfectly. Take care when mixing different metal colours as this can look haphazard if not done thoughtfully. However, if you have gold rings (wedding/engagement rings for example) don’t feel you have to stick to gold on your wrist or anywhere else for that matter.

Large stacks of bracelets ideally should be worn with much simpler outfits so as not to look cluttered. A good rule of thumb is the larger the stack the simpler the outfit.  Go ahead, experiment and have fun – the options are really endless!

 

Stacking bracelets

Muru stretch bracelets from Sophisticato.uk

Pictured  left Boho Betty and right Muru Talisman 

Quirky or sparkly – bracelets for elegant date nights and glamorous parties

For high impact but no fuss try a cuff such as Chris Lewis Wound Silver Cuff (featured at the top of this blog) which would add a touch of class to any outfit for that special dinner date, as would the beautiful Keisha Pearls bracelet pictured below along with a couple from Bill Skinner for a slightly more quirky but nonetheless ‘dressed up’  look.

Bracelet selection from Sophisticato.uk

Above left Bill Skinner Scenes of Nature, Centre Keisha Pearls by Pearls of the Orient, Right Bill Skinner Honeycomb & Bee

Sometimes though you just have to go all out for glam and sparkle for those extra special dates or party nights and Nour London have the perfect solution without breaking the bank!

Sparkly bracelets by Nour London available et Sophisticato.uk

 

I hope this helps you to wear bracelets with greater ease and will be front of mind the next time you’re looking to put that finishing touch of chic to your outfit. Choosing timeless bracelets will give you tons of options as they can be worn again and again!

For more ideas and alternatives use this link

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