Daring jewelry gives new life to old looks


The Bronze Octopus Ear Cuff ($49.00) offers all that’s good about both earrings and the nautical look, sans piercing and tentacle attack (Photo courtesy of Etsy.com/shop/martymagic).

Everything old is new and everything tacky is trendy. Since the fashion world spins like a top, it can be tempting to buy basic and classic items like properly fitting jeans and tailored blazers and avoid the trend cycle all together. An alternative? Courageous jewelry that pays homage to trends past while bringing even the simplest look into the new year.

1. The Bolo Tie

The Bow Lo Bolo Tie (seen in grape leather with brass tips, $45.00) by Etsy. User iheartnorwegianwood adds the right amount of cowboy charm without looking costume-like. Wear with a layered outfit to help the ties blend in or over a plain, collarless shirt to draw attention (Photo courtesy of Etsy.com/shop/iheartnorwegianwood).

While the Western look is easily thought of as campy or themed, in small doses it can add both fashion forwardness and a playful gimmick to an outfit. The epitome of this look? The bolo tie.

These cowboy movie standbys are clearly recognizable with their braided leather strings and decorative clasps. These days, necklace-like options are available in styles far from the sheriff-like star of bolos gone by. To modernize the look, wear the centerpiece at heart level or lower and avoid the button-up-and-bolo pair.

2. The Removable Collar

The Metal Frill Collar ($28.00) by Freedom offers a playful alternative to the collar norm (Photo courtesy of Topshop.com).

Collar trends over time have varied in both size and shape. Peter Pan, high-neck, wide lapel, ruffled, and popped collars have all had their moment in the sun. The most fashion-forward collar one can buy is neither attached to a shirt nor meant to blend into one. Stand-alone, removable collars accentuate basics like the tried and true tee-and-jeans look into something worthy of a double-take.

These faux necklace collars can be found in vintage shops adored with plastic pearls and in high-label stores covered in designer logos. One easy way to wear the look is in metal form on a necklace chain. This allows the length to be adjusted and avoids the possible ‘I ripped this off my tuxedo’ misunderstanding.

3: The Perfume Vial Necklace

This Disney Couture Perfume Vial Tower Necklace ($90.00) is reminiscent of both vintage perfume jewelry and heroic cartoon princesses. The tower’s top unscrews to reveal the scented liquid inside (Photo courtesy of Fredflare.com).

Cosmetics and jewelry are staples in completing a stylish look. If a woman is wearing makeup and wearing jewelry, it’s only logical the two should be combined. As opposed to purchasing a piece manufactured with pre-selected toiletries—or worse, dig the ancient solid perfume out of a vintage option— why not snag something that lets you choose the content?

A perfume vial necklace lets you do just that. Available in a wide variety of looks and styles, the functionality of the piece lets you secure your signature scent without toting a sample bottle around in your handbag. When it empties, simply switch it up.

4. Hobnail Lucite

The Empress White "Empress" bracelet ($155.00) is made of durable lucitie—much stronger than the hobnail milk glass it is remincent of (Photo courtesy of Tarinatarantino.com).

Hobnail milk glass, often found in second hand stores in the form of vases and candy dishes, is both perfectly retro and beautifully simple. So simple, in fact, that the look of the teeny semi-spheres engulfing the piece can match almost any other style. This vintage look has moved far from flower holders and into everyday accessories.

Pink-haired designer Tarina Tarantino’s  created an entire collection, the “Empress White” jewelry line, around the look. It includes pieces from earrings to statement necklaces, all while rocking the monotone color palate and trademark bumps.

5. Jumbo Ear Cuffs

The Bronze Octopus Ear Cuff ($49.00) offers all that’s good about both earrings and the nautical look, sans piercing and tentacle attack (Photo courtesy of Etsy.com/shop/martymagic).

Ear cuffs aren’t new; what’s fresh and exciting is the direction they’re heading in. Ear cuffs, also called ear spirals, can be found connected to a post earring or be freestanding, big or small, statement-making or delicate.

At its most simple, a modern ear cuff is a metal band meant to wrap around a part (normally the cartilage) of the ear. Although it can pinch if improperly secured, it offers a piercing-free look that is sure to draw attention. Currently, ear cuffs can be found in every style from hippie chic to steampunk. Regardless of the theme, the look is sure to draw lobe envy.

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