Thursday, 3 May 2012

Earrings: Favourites, Re-Constructions and Passé

Decorative Choices

Look at the earrings I've found . . . 
- from My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002) 

A Closet Content Analysis: Earrings

NICE             NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY           NEED             NEW

I think the accessories look very modern and very exciting. These big earrings, these big hoops. I think the girls are sort of falling in love with...
- Ralph Lauren

Earrings are the most worn adornments, necklaces are second and bracelets come in third. That analysis is certainly logical and confirms my own number one jewelry wearing choice; although for me bracelets come in second and necklaces third.

For the spring and summer of 2012, it appears as if statement earrings are taking over statement necklaces in popularity. The problem there is weight, especially if you prefer precious metals and stones to faux. Many of us know a person or two who has ripped through the bottom of the ear owing to weighing down and overextending their pierced lobes. Old style clip-ons might be a safer choice when wearing weighty earrings but even then the clip spring has to be sturdy enough to manage the weight. I think I'll stick to the hoops with a statement necklace. 

Black rhinestone hoops: just enough bling to "pop" something black
NICE: Hoops of moderate to large circumference are my best NICE in the earring category. I have gold, silver, and be-jeweled (albeit none that are precious). I've lost my share of expensive earrings, some that were gifts, over the years and have the singletons left to prove it. 

Five strand chain drop earrings: re-makes from old button clip-ons

NOTE-WORTHY RE-CREATIONS: In the past, I have often wondered why women saved singleton earrings. I suppose there's always the hope that the lost one will be found or perhaps that somehow one might find another exact same pair and have a spare.

From that "wondering why" I began re-creating "new" pieces from the bits and baubles I had. While I was in Victoria, Canada, a friend asked me to remake a pair of beaded button clip-on earrings from the sixties (on the left). I salvaged the chain from other bits she had and created a pair of five chain drop pierced earrings using the beads (only the ear hooks were new). For those who like vintage, you are probably cringing; but now for her, those never-worn button earrings have become wearable. Of course, I would think this is a fabulous idea. 

Cuban black & burnished gold chain link drop with orange ceramic bead.

NOTE-WORTHY NEW-CREATIONS: The advantage of being a fashion jewelry maker is that I can make trendy pairs for the cost of materials. This pair of over-size links with an orange ceramic do-nut bead complement an orange top I bought in Vancouver.

Chain drop earrings featuring black Cuban and burnished gold oval links.

I have been inspired by David Yurman's chain link graduated drop earrings and have made a variety based on this inspiration using round, oval, and cuban/curve link chains. 

5 chain drop feather earrings, September, 2011

NO THANKS: How quickly a fad comes and goes. In the spring and summer of 2011, feather earrings were all the rage. I was fortunate enough to have a brother-in-law who ties flies (for fly fishing hooks). He had a collection of beautiful feathers and we made an arrangement. He got his cut, and by Christmas 2011 I had sold or given away all the feather earrings I made and now it's done. I only wore feather earrings two or three times. This  pair featuring a 5 strand drop of different lengths with the feathers touching the tops of my shoulders was one of my favourite pairs. 

NEED: I NEED to get a pair of 18 karat gold hoops fixed. The ear wire broke off one of the hoops and I don't have 18 karat findings. They have been sitting broken for a good while. What a waste. There's a piece of advice from this experience - if they can be fixed, fix them and wear them, for goodness sake. 

NEW: I'll update this post if I buy a pair of earrings at the market in Ste. Foy Le Grande (45 minutes from Bordeaux by motorway) this Saturday. I have never been here in May and so I am looking forward to see if the same vendors are here in the spring as in July and August. I know one thing for sure there are not as many British tourists here now as there are in the summer.  

Love the introductory line from an email I received, celebrating "national girlfriend and sister's week": I don't want to brag or make anyone jealous or anything, but I can still fit into the earrings I wore in high school.


  1. Relaxing in Kelowna4 May 2012 at 11:27

    Love the way you promote the idea of "reduce, reuse, recycle", or as you say, "repurpose". And the last line of your post has become my new mantra!

    1. I love the challenge of re-purposing. A colleague once asked me to re-create a green-seed-bead flower brooch into something she could wear. She was reading my mind as I pondered it and she said, "I know it's awful, but it's sentimental". I re-made it into a necklace using bronze leaves and charms to tone down the green flower and bronze chain and findings to create a necklace. She was grateful and I was satisfied; probably even more than when I make something new.

      The last line - I agree, it's a good one!


Your comments inspire me and so I read them in gratitude and reply with delight. Thank you.