Prepare to shop accordingly.
After a pandemic temporarily eradicated superfluous accessories like jewelry, it seems that the other shoe (earring?) has finally dropped, and the 2023 collections indicate a recovering trendcast, with more fanfare and flamboyancy than ever.
Surveying accessories on both the spring and new Fall 2023 (men's) collections, pearls are piled high, as are other nautical motifs like shells and starfish. Meanwhile, as gold continues to be the top-grossing jewelry material — dominating nearly half the market in 2021 — a significant number of designers are rebelliously incorporating more silver finishes, both mixed with contrasting metals and singularly.
With the year well underway, there's no better time to get acquainted with (and start shopping) what are sure to be 2023's most popular jewelry trends. Learn about and shop them all, below.
Bangles and cuff bracelets have come in and out of popularity nearly every decade for the last century, from the Art Deco era to Gal Gadot's Tiffany bands in "Wonder Woman 1984" to Saint Laurent's recent runways. Although a notoriously favored accessory, bangle bracelets are swiftly cuffing stylish wrists left and right, thanks to a slew of designers that doubled down on battle-ready bands. For 2023 (so far), they include: Lanvin, Zimmerman, Loewe, Balmain, Michael Kors, Jil Sander, Moschino, Tory Burch and Saint Laurent once again. Simple in application and grandiose in statement, the armored accessory might just be the edge you need to slay the year.
The jewelry market — and market industries in general — is noticing the growing importance of sentimentality to customers.
"People love being involved in the process of customizing their own pieces," says Rachel Karich, founder and designer of LA-based RG The Shop. "There's something so special about a keepsake with a personal touch [such as] your baby's, dog's or significant other's name made into it."
"The piece has to have meaning," says Inesita Capó, co-founder of İTÄ Jewelry, a Puerto-Rico-based brand focused solely on symbolic jewelry. "When the pandemic hit, we were just getting our brand off the ground and were worried about what was to come for us. Fortunately, we only saw growth, and so much of the response was because, more than ever, people wanted heart and meaning in what they were purchasing."
These kind of symbolic make timeless investment pieces and the most cherished of gifts.
In its 2023 Luxury Consignment Report, The RealReal found that shoppers' interest in pearls — specifically pearl bracelets — more than doubled from the third to the final quarter of 2022, whereas interest in diamond bracelets concurrently dropped 50%. Klarna also found that pearl necklaces were purchased at a 32% increase, while pearl earrings were the third top-trending Regencycore item of 2022.
Powerful women have been loving pearls, symbolizing strength and wisdom, for centuries, so it's no surprise that Soft Girls™ are leaning into opalescent ornaments of all kinds. Ome Studios' Luc Earrings a must-own item this year, given the heart motifs dominating runways. Meanwhile, long, wrapped strands of vintage-inspired pearls à la Chanel will always be timeless.
"Even the most dainty of pearl bracelets lend an air of sophistication and class to any outfit," says Karcich.
"When I look at our Atabex, I'm reminded of how women are the real forces of nature," says Capó, of ITA'S bestselling talisman pendants, proving that a piece packed with meaning (in this case, a Caribbean taíno queen representing empowerment) can "bond you with the piece in a very unique way."
Whether you belong to the culture from which an item stems or respectfully admire its sentiment, it's helpful to, at the very least, be well-versed in its meaning to avoid appropriation.
While it's true that nautical jewelry rears its head every summer, designers and shoppers have grown tired of the playful kids' beads that once reigned supreme. Instead, we're replacing the nostalgic trend with a similarly DIY alternative: beached shells strung on simple cords.
Chanel, Moschino, Blumarine and many more have been known to send logo-emblazoned neck candy down the catwalk. Mark Shami, founder of New York's The M Jewelers, says nameplate necklaces are more than a fad, though.
"My father was making nameplates 45 years ago, and I'm still making them every day, now more than ever," he says.
Historically embraced by Black and Latinx communities — and later appropriated by Patricia Field on "Sex and the City" for Carrie's go-to accessory — nameplate necklaces are reaching a peak once again. (Bella Hadid sports The M Jeweler's Butterfly Flower Nameplate Necklace regularly.)
In 2021, rings had the leading revenue share in the jewelry market at over 25% — likely due to the significant uptick in wedding bands sold (approximately 4.5 million in 2022, but who's counting?). Fortune Business Insights predicts that gold rings, specifically, will continue to be the top-grossing segment of jewelry this year. Hence, dainty stacking rings are trending harder than ever.
Jewelry wearers are trading in basic eternity bands for a charmed variety. Not sold on the idea? Just look to Los Angeles-based Logan Hollowell's waterfall ring for a breathtaking alternative bridal stack. Not betrothed? No problem: Single stones from Mejuri and Alex Mika are perfect options for a little daily sparkle, while Costolo provides a more avant-garde style.
More and more designers are hopping on the silver train with all kinds of bold designs, from spiked chokers to faux face piercings.
Dramatically accessorized lobes on models at the Spring 2023 shows are sure to translate into heavily stacked earscapes, especially via layered-on hoop and huggie sets.
Annie Chen, VP of Merchandising at Brilliant Earth, the online fine jeweler known for its build-your-own-wedding-ring lab, confirms that customers are loving the mixed-metal look when it comes to their accessories — and there are no signs of the trend slowing down.
"Gold will continue to be in the mix in 2023, along with cooler metals," like sterling silver and platinum, she says.
Clashing metals is a versatile styling move that enables endless mixing and matching options. It's practical, really. While there are no rules, having at least one two-toned piece in your curation will make the rest flow easier and read more purposeful.
The trend you probably saw coming from miles away (if only because of its large nature) is also perhaps the most fun of all. Realistic buds began blooming last fall, but constitute a full-blown trend now that Prada, Simon Rochas, Dries Van Noten and Acne Studios have showcased fabric florals strewn along necklaces and brooches or sewn directly onto garments.
In a recent report, the RealReal confirmed that pin sales are on the up and up: "Brooches] had an uptick in demand of 27% during the 2022 holidays, and we’re expecting to see even more of them on the red carpet in 2023."
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