Monday, April 28, 2008

LA Times Rock Report

So the Sunday LA Times has finally gotten around to reporting on jewelry in multiple articles in their Image section.

NOW that the patina of the "it" bag has worn off, along with the appeal of the red sole of a Christian Louboutin pump, jewelry -- both fine and faux -- is having its moment.We're not talking about a single strand of pearls, a subtle lariat or a few stacking rings. We're talking statement jewelry, the kind of pieces that are so colorful, intricate or just plain enormous, they demand to be noticed.

I wonder, have those LA Times writers been reading BH Branchee. I wrote here about the demise of the "it" bag and the new focus on jewelry.

For spring, jewelry is alive with birds, butterflies, blossoms and blooms echoing the garden of delights on the fashion runways. The details are so lifelike on these fantasy pieces, they look as if they could have been plucked from the wild. Leviev's 60-carat fern frond, dazzling with green garnets and yellow diamonds, is as realistic as a sketch from a botany book. Chanel's Camellia Feuille aquamarine and blue sapphire ring may be small, but the intense color of the stones makes it look like the prize bloom in a garden. Chopard took the trend and turned it into one major cuff clustered with "blossoms" of pink sapphires and diamonds, and priced at $650,000. Talk about flower power.

Well, if you are looking for some garden themed jewelry and you don't want to spend $16,000 on this green winged dragonfly brooch from Van Cleef and Arpels, here's a diamond dragonfly brooch for $2150 from

Well anyway, lots in the LA Times....some useful, some not.

The Jagger Dagger, a $250,000 ice pick
A coming-out party unveils a bejeweled ice pick designed by Jade Jagger. It's got diamonds, sapphires and lapis lazuli. Too pricey? There's a "cheaper" version for $10,000.

An Ice Pick! Doesn't everone need one of those? (I don't know about you but I find myself breaking up large chunks of ice on a daily basis.)

Men can wear jewelry too
Flashy male bling has reached a level of acceptance not seen since the 1970s.

Uh, not really. Sorry but anything more for men that a watch, cufflinks and a wedding ring is tasteless...unless of course the gentleman is a titled royal and only then is a signet ring acceptable.

How do you broach the brooch?
Wear it high on your shoulder. It gives you height, and it's a younger way to wear it. In other words, don't wear it like your grandmother did, like a third bosom.

Let's talk about bracelets.
The more the merrier. That rule about taking a piece of jewelry off before you walk out the door is dead. Bracelet-length sleeves are very in, but I also don't mind seeing a bracelet on top of a long sleeve either. And every now and then, I'll see a woman in matching cuffs, and there's nothing chicer than that.

Do you wear the cuffs on the same hand or different?
Both or one. Ken Downing at Neiman Marcus is such an amazing stylist and man of taste. And he recently did a showing of my jewelry and the models, their wrists were stacked with five or six bracelets on each arm. All different colors. And then the backs of their dresses -- these low cut dresses -- jewels pinned to them.

All great fashion advice from Hutton Wilkinson the stylistic heir to Tony Duquette.

"Costume was never made to last," Romero says. "The metals are much softer and are usually alloys, which are much harder to work with. People take much better care of fine jewelry than they do costume and actually, fine jewelry is sturdier. Precious metals and real stones can take a lot more abuse."
A great article on jewelry upkeep and repair with 4 recommended repair shops.
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