Top 5 Heart Jewels: A Lot Like Love

Categories:Jewelry & Watches

Top 5 Heart Jewels

The head and the heart are often at war with each other when it comes to love, but when it comes to jewelry, there’s not much to fight over (that fight with your bank account rages on, though!). So for Valentine’s Day and every other day of the year, choose one of these special gold tokens that will have you feeling crazy in love – even if you’re just in love with your style.

Finn Heart & Arrow Earrings: Even the blackest of hearts needs love, and Finn’s asymmetric earrings know that all it takes is Cupid’s arrow to strike the match. 

Poiray Paris 18K Pink Gold Heart Pendant Necklace with Brown Diamonds: Let romance rope you in with this delicate Art Deco-inspired pink gold and diamond pendant.

Ileana Makri Diamond Love Ring: This may not be the massive engagement stunner some of you have been dreaming about, but it’s important not to rush into things. Simple, yet sweet, Ileana Makri’s ring has all a girl needs – diamonds…I mean, love! All you need is love. 

Jennifer Meyer Gold Heart-By-the-Inch Bracelet: Everyone dreams of falling for someone with a heart of gold. To get an edge on the competition, why not have six golden hearts? 

Lanvin Embellished Heart Brooch: Ahh, to be in love in Lanvin! This brooch has not one, but two decadent rows of rocks framing its crystal clear heart. This isn’t the kind you would wear on your sleeve, but on a scarf? Most definitely. 

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Jules Smith Spiked Jewelry: Stack Attack

Categories:Jewelry & Watches

Jules Smith Spiked Jewelry

When you’re stacking jewelry, you don’t want to spend tons on each piece – they add up after all! So I was happy to come across these Frugal Snob options from Jules Smith. Founder and lead designer Gina Nigrelli-Smith has built the line into a celeb favorite with everything from jelly charm bracelets to BFF necklaces. These pieces are a little rougher around the edges, though. The bangles caught my eye first. Even one of them alone would stand out, but I can’t resist stacking and Gina makes it so convenient (and wallet-friendly – why not get two sets??). Same goes for the chevron-shaped rings ! Even the necklace has a stacking element to it with one shark tooth pendant topping another. Pile these on over your girliest dresses for seriously sharp style. 

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Cindy Chao Ruby Ribbon Ring: One in a Multi-Million

Categories:Jewelry & Watches

Cindy Chao Ruby Ribbon Ring

Words cannot describe how proud I am of my dear friend Cindy Chao. In a very short time, she has taken the jewelry world by storm. And redefined the very definition of fine jewelry. As a supremely gifted sculptress, she has elevated jewel art to the next level, raising the bar with her fantastical creations.

The latest is quite a feat. The Ruby Ribbon ring is one of the most exquisite pieces I’ve seen from Cindy. Her artful interpretation of the classic ribbon-and-bow motif comes to vivid life with the centerpiece: a rare, untreated Burmese “Pigeon’s Blood” ruby (named for it’s wildly saturated red hue). Framed with 360-degree pave-set dancing diamond ribbons, as Cindy describes it, the effect is “like heavy silk.” And the result is dynamic and unreal. Cindy also knows her stuff: “Asians love rubies, but they don’t want to look mature.” Same goes for all girls, I think! Clearly, this is no average ruby. 

Cindy Chao Ruby Ribbon Ring

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Fashion Jewelry: The Finishing Touch

Categories:Jewelry & Watches

Fashion Jewelry

 where we turn when our outfit feels like it’s missing something – an oversized collar, dramatic drop earrings, a cocktail ring…To finish off your look, 

 These may be from the Spring/Summer 2014 collection, but with the mix of pearls and perspex, they hint at both a retro and futuristic feel.

Oversized earrings like these are perfect on hot summer days when you want your hair pulled up into a messy bun.

 Beneath the golden waves, Swarovski crystals, and freshwater pearls, you’ll find tiny McQueen skulls. This is the kind of grand and conversation-starting piece you build an outfit around.

The French jewelry designer’s pieces always seem as if they’re from another time. These hoops were inspired by ancient Incan carvings and spikes.

Stacking rings of all shapes and sizes has been a trend throughout the last year. Tom Binns makes the look easy to imitate with double bands!

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Gaydamak Jewelry: Sisterly Love

Categories:Jewelry & Watches


Gaydamak Jewelry

The best kind of jewelry is the kind you can tell was designed by a passionate Jewel Snob, or in the case of Gaydamak, two Jewel Snobs! Since 2009, sisters Sonia and Katia Gaydamak have been traveling around the world, sourcing their materials everywhere from Israel to Asia to good, old New York. They are experts in gemology, crafting the finest diamonds and gems into their signature hand pieces. In fact, “signature” doesn’t even do them justice; these innovative ladies are the ones who got the trend on the map (Joan Smalls and Madonna are a couple of the most famous adopters), naming the jewels “hand bracelets.” They slide coolly over your palms for a play on the classic bracelet that muddles the line between edgy and delicate. The duo also designs gorgeous rings like this 3 Finger Ring ($3,540) above. Decked out in flames of white and black diamonds, excess has never looked so perfectly restrained! 

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How To Build A Watch Wardrobe

Categories:Jewelry & Watches

Jewellery is tough to pull off if you don’t make your money spitting bars. Which is a large part of why we men obsess over watches. Turn up to a business lunch with inch-thick gold draped around your neck and you’re getting seated by the bathrooms. But if it’s around your wrist? Please, sir, do follow me to the chef’s table.

But you can’t rely on one knockout timepiece. As with your wardrobe, a deep wrist rotation allows for better dressing and the chance to switch up your style. Trust us – an alarm clock-faced pilot’s watch glinting on your wrist kills your black tie look as much as a pair of Air Jordans (got that, Ed Sheeran?).

“A sports-led chronograph on a steel bracelet may fit the boardroom, but it’s by no means classic enough for a wedding,” says Muhaddisa Fazal, fine watch buyer at The Watch Gallery. Which means unless you’re fine wearing the same outfit everywhere, you need multiple options.

That’s all well and good, you say, but there’s the small matter of the five-figure price tag on a Jaeger-LeCoultre Master Ultra Thin dress watch. Dropping a house deposit on something designed for red carpets isn’t realistic unless you’re either walking them regularly, or rigging Libor. Thanks be, then, for the subtle – but important – distinction between a watch wardrobe, and a watch collection.

The latter is for men who describe themselves, without a glimmer of irony, as horologists. Those who don’t think: “Does that blue face work with this bomber?”, but “Which of my pinstripe navy suits should I wear with the Patek?” Watch collections tend to appreciate in safes, as multi-thousand pound piles of precious metal.

DOTTLING LIBERTY BARCELONA WATCH SAFEIMAGE: DÖTTLING LIBERTY BARCELONA WATCH SAFE

“Connoisseurs can collect timepieces that never see daylight or complement their owner,” says Damian Otwinowski, retail director at Watches of Switzerland’s 155 Regent Street, London store. “That’s an injustice to the craftsmanship.” Or, you know, the equivalent of Smaug the dragon lounging on his pile of treasure.

A watch wardrobe, however, is a group of timepieces that let you set off whatever you’re wearing just so. “We change our skin often,” says Otwinowski. “A watch should be an extension of your attitude, personality and mood.” So these are pieces that actually spend time on your wrist, rather than gathering dust.

A watch wardrobe can be spendy, if you’ve got the means, but needn’t be if you haven’t. The key is that what’s in it gets worn, and that each element is bought with an understanding of how it’ll work with what you wear.

The Magic Number

Building a watch wardrobe, then, means covering bases. The old saying goes that every man needs three watches: one for the office, one for the weekend and something plain-faced for formal dinners that tells nothing other than the time and how refined your taste is. Fine if you’re Don Draper. Less so if you’re more often in nightclubs than those reserved for private members.

So, although the trio stands, it needs updating. “It’s beneficial to have a classic watch, a sports watch and a statement choice,” says Fazal. “Most men alternate between a classic and a sports for the daily ensemble, saving that statement piece for an extra special event.”

The classic and sports should ideally have something to do with either your job – if you’re a seaman, then think Rolex Yacht-Master over a pilot’s watch like a Breitling Navitimer – or your hobbies. For keen cooks, a plain-faced chronograph, like the IWC Portugieser, means a better outfit in the office and perfect pasta in the kitchen.

There are some ground rules to watch-clothing styling. First, leathers and metals should match. If you’re wearing brown shoes, or carrying a chocolate folio, you need to switch that black crocodile skin. And if you’re wearing any gold jewellery – probably your wedding ring and cufflinks, unless you’re in the A$AP Mob – don’t wear a silver bracelet. Yes, that includes steel.

Make sure you match your metals and leathersMake sure you match your metals and leathers

Beyond that, it’s about matching aesthetic to environment. As a rule of thumb, the more practical your watch, the less formal the occasion you wear it for.

You shouldn’t need to time anything at a wedding (it won’t make the best man’s speech go faster, although – take our word for it – champagne will) so don’t wear a diving watch.

It's important that your watch matches the occasion as well as your outfitIt’s important that your watch matches the occasion as well as your outfit

Technically, tradition dictates that if you’re in a dinner jacket, you shouldn’t be wearing a watch at all as you’re having too much fun to worry about the time. But there’s always your phone if you’re not.

Time After Time

Your first watch, then, should be something adaptable. There’s no point dropping your hard-earned on a dress watch if you live in streetwear, or a model with more dials than a call centre when you work in pensions in the city.

You also don’t want to blow the bank. According to Fazal, your first watch sets a benchmark you’re unlikely to dip below, so be sensible and look to upgrade later.

“A first watch should hit between £250-600 with an increase of about £500 every time,” she adds. “Granted, that takes a lot of saving, but most people only purchase a watch once every three to five years.” She also recommends steering subtle, even if it’s been a bumper year on the markets.

“A lot of guys buy a series of big statement pieces whenever the bonus comes in, but in all likelihood, you’ll get minimal wear from a wrist trophy. They’re often too flashy for the office and, realistically, how many weddings and rotary dinners do you go to over a year?” Steer subtle with something like the Mondaine Stop2Go (£450) if your budget’s tight, or the Junghans Meister Classic (£1,250) if there’s a touch more to play with.

Next comes something with more personality, says Otwinowski. TAG Heuer and Omega’s racing watches are stalwarts of Swiss watchmaking, although expect to see your Carrera or Speedmaster on a fair few wrists.

Less common is something like the Raymond Weil Freelancer Piper (£2,895), an aviation watch produced in collaboration with private airplane manufacturer Piper Aircraft. It’s a timepiece that offers exclusivity, with a less exclusive price tag.

Raymond Weil Freelancer Piper Watch

Finally, your formal watch. Perhaps counter-intuitively, there’s an argument to be made that less wear means you should spend more. You get the pleasure of breaking out something special, and run less risk of it getting battered. But formal needn’t mean dull. Baume & Mercier’s Classima range (from £990) is unobtrusive but – with its Roman numerals and gossamer hands – still has personality.

If you’ve saved the pennies, Zenith’s Captain Chronograph (£5,800) dresses up thanks to the gold on the hands and hour markers, but the chronograph adds a ruggedness that means you won’t have to wait for a black tie ball to break it out.

Baume & Mercier Classima Stainless Steel and Zenith Captain Black Automatic Chronograph Watch

Mechanical watches aren’t like their workhorse quartz cousins. “Good watches are like car engines,” says Fazal. “They need to be maintained every couple of years.”

And just as you wouldn’t take that finely tuned Ferrari to the supermarket, don’t risk damaging your tourbillon on the trolley. That said, remember to – when appropriate – actually wear it. You don’t want your wardrobe to become a security box.

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