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Needs a Bracelet

 
Most outfits needs a little jewelry — a necklace, brooch or bracelet — to look finished. Of these choices, bracelets are the easiest to coordinate with an ensemble and their versatility makes them the best investment of any money you’ve set aside for jewelry.

In case you need a little argument before you can accept that bracelets are the most versatile jewelry:

  • Matching a necklace with a top is tricky because it needs to work on three different levels. First, the style of the necklace needs to complement the fabric and cut of the top. Second, the length of the necklace needs to fit or complement the neckline of the top. Third, the scale of the necklace needs to work, proportionately, with the face and frame of the wearer.
  • Brooches are tricky because, in addition to complementing the style of a top (or dress or jacket), they cannot put too much stress (i.e., weight) on the fabric. I have a beautiful Alexis Bittar brooch that is simply too heavy to be worn on anything except velvet or wool blazers.[1]
  • Bracelets only need to complement the style of the outfit. Q.E.D.
Bracelets

Bracelets = approximately 1/1000 of surface area of this outfit and yet have an impact

If you still need convincing, consider: The women who write Go Fug Yourself have construed this guidance as a mandate, which they have shortened to an acronym — NAB (Needs a Bracelet). That seems irrefutable to me.

When I started working at my law firm, I invested in an assortment of David Yurman sterling silver link bracelets and bangles.[2] These bracelets are the workhorses of my jewelry box and I wear them all the time in various combinations of 2-5 bracelets. I remember when I bought the bracelets I also considered a three-stranded bracelet — but a colleague pointed out that three single bracelets were more flexible than one three-stranded bracelet. She said, “Some days, you might want to wear just one.” And I thought, “No, I won’t!” And I haven’t. But the general principle was sound.

David Yurman, hard at work

David Yurman, hard at work

David Yurman, pressed into service again

David Yurman, pressed into service again

Gavilane

Gavilane antique wood bracelets, spelling David Yurman

Not all bracelets need be investments. Clever designs are made from wood, horn, lucite, cloth, and yarn. Regardless of the material, I am a big fan of multiples — wearing two or three bracelets on the wrist.

Ashley Pittman Kama Light Horn Bangles

Ashley Pittman Kama Light Horn Bangles

Miriam Haskell Tassell Pearl Bracelet

Miriam Haskell Tassell Pearl Bracelet

Elizabeth Yarborough bangles at yarbie.com

Elizabeth Yarborough Bangles

Stephanie Kantis Large Gold Plated Bracelet

Stephanie Kantis Large Coronation Bracelet

Giles & Brother Skinny Cortina Cuff

Giles & Brother Skinny Cortina Cuff

David Yurman Elements Bracelet

David Yurman Elements Bracelet

But a word of caution: Beware of noisy bracelets. I have a bracelet that is dripping with ornaments. I wore it once, and realized that when I walked the halls, I sounded like Jacob Marley coming to visit Ebenzer Scrooge.

Perhaps the junior staff liked it; a cat wearing a bell can’t surprise anyone.

The Noisemaker

The Noisemaker

One final tip from Diana Coleman, the excellent David Yurman specialist at Neiman Marcus in Washington, D.C.: Store sterling silver bracelets in their pouches and then inside ziploc bags and they won’t tarnish. I’ve had these bracelets 12 years and haven’t polished them once. They’re still bright.

Ashley Pittman; Miriam Haskell; Elizabeth Yarborough; Stephanie Kantis; Giles & Brother; David Yurman; Gavilane

 
 
 
Where is that sound coming from

Where is that sound coming from

2 thoughts on “Needs a Bracelet

  1. Thanks – I have just started reading your blog, and as a fellow attorney in a business casual office, I am finding your style and your tips very helpful (and fun) in contemplating my own options. This post in particular put into relief for me, much to my husband’s dismay, the glaring lack of nice silver bracelets in my own jewelry box.

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