It was Coco Chanel who famously said: “a woman needs ropes and ropes of pearls”. It was also Miss Coco who, as part of her invention of the modern style, made the pearl necklace a must-have piece of jewelry. Suddenly, pearls could be worn every day and combined with another Chanel staple - the little black dress, not saved for ball gowns as they have been for centuries.
Almost 100 years later, it seems that we are living in another pearl renaissance. 2018 saw pearls back on the runways, and in more creative ways than ever before. Gone are the days of one classic strand resting atop a simple cardigan or pastel shell top. Designers like Alexander McQueen, Celine, and Simone Rocha sent them down their runways in sculptural earrings, quirky bright mismatched danglers, and elegant barrettes. From chunky statement necklaces to dainty drop earrings, these traditional gems add a chic touch of elegance to any outfit.
Pearls earrings were a favorite on 2018 runways. Images: Imaxtree
We made a list of the most desirable pearl trends and then added our take on taking the trend from the runway to real life:
The Trend: More is More
Immortalized by Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast in Tiffany's, there is nothing chicer than layers of pearls held together by a prominent clasp.
Audrey wore her pearls to breakfast and inspired women everywhere. Image: Paramount Pictures
Some even claim that the current interest in pearls started from Netflix’s The Crown second season, that follows Queen Elizabeth II and her sister Princess Margaret during the 1960’s. The show recreated many historic fashion pieces, including the art-deco necklace comprised of five pearl strands secured with a platinum and diamond clasp worn by the younger royal for her Cecil Beaton birthday portrait.
Princess Margaret combined fashion with a royal flair in this striking look. Image: Netflix
Our Take: Multi-strand is your Friend
While the single string of pearls has been considered somewhat matronly, a multi-strand pearl necklace is bold and fashionable. When you choose a pearl necklace or bracelet to pair with your outfit, go for multiples strands or even dare to combine different sizes and shapes of pearls for a look that’s interesting and channel your unique interpretation.
Layers of pearls and prominent clasps aren't just for princesses and movie star. Recreate this classic with our Carol Necklace.
The Trend: Baroque Rocks'Baroque Pearls' is the term for irregularly shaped pearls that don’t look like perfect spheres. Unlike their sleek sisters, that have differences in size and texture that makes each one unique, thus giving jewelry more character.
Baroque pearls are all about drama. Image sources: Esra Dandin, Sophie Buhai, With Concept
Our Take: Dive into FreshwaterUnlike round pearls grown in seawater, irregular shapes are typical of freshwater pearls like the ones we use here at LStudio jewelry. We especially love how they look in long Opera Length necklaces and earrings.
Many of our pieces combine freshwater pearls with gold accents. The Michelle necklace and Natalia bracelet are a perfect pair.
The Trend: Statement Earrings
Prominent drop earrings with a single large pearl are particularly fashionable this year. A dramatic version, showcasing truly stunning baroque pearls, was featured in Alexander Mcqueen's spring collection. And it’s hard not to love the much more demure versions by Celine.
Pearl earrings can create a surprisingly dramatic look. Images: Marcus Tondo & IMAXtree
Our Take: Mix Pearl and GoldThere is an infinite number of variations to choose from, but large, over the top earrings, are just not that practical. We recommend going for smaller versions, but making the pearls stand out by accentuating them with gold. The combination of pearls and gold is especially right for a put-together office look.
Faith earrings are what you need. Faux-pearl beads make Anna and Gabriella fantastic choices for a casual look.
The trend: Everything GoesIt’s truly incredible how one of the most classic materials, used in jewelry since antiquity, was reinvented by contemporary designers. The elegant pearl now has an air of edge. Moving beyond necklaces and tiaras, pearls are starring in an endless array of covetable fashion items, like dresses, bags, slippers, and sneakers.
Imaginative designers like Gucci stretch the limits of the trend and re-define pearls' role in fashion. Images: MORGANE LAY, Marcus Tondo - Indigital.tv, Getty Images
Our Take: Let Your Style ShineWe believe that fashion is a way to express your personality. The fun thing about a classic like pearls is that you can never go wrong combining different pieces, so we urge you to experiment. Play with sizes and lengths, or wrap a long pearl necklace as a bracelet. Combine vintage with edge and authentic heirlooms with costume jewelry. What we can all learn from great designers is the magic of the unexpected combination and the beauty of uniqueness.
Combining different and unexpected pieces is key to finding your personal style.
How do you style your pearl pieces? Send us your looks and share your thoughts!
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