Unlike May West, who was quoted as saying–“I have always felt a gift diamond shines so much better than one you buy for yourself!” –I believe that all jewelry you purchase yourself suggests that you are independent, self-sufficient and, whether set in earrings, a pendant, or even a ring, allows your personality to shine.
When buying your own jewelry, there is no need to leave hints, cutouts of magazines or mastermind covert operations with your favorite retailers to get what you want. You go in, see it, have to own it, and usually with a little ping of the cash register and your signature, you get the unbelievable rush of walking out with a piece of jewelry that bespeaks something about who you are.
Over the summer I blogged about being a jewel-aholic, a name coined for me by close friend and majorly talented designer, Moritz Glik (diamond and sapphire earrings featured here). I have admitted to my addiction and have even tried to control my urges. But there is a special attraction I have for little something that lights up the face, sparkles from a finger…(or two), and glistens around the wrist.
For much of my life, I’ve been either a serial monogamist or in-between boyfriends. I’ve been given jewelry that ranged from silver artisan sculptures of (what the heck, I still can’t begin to figure it out) to sweet, girley pave hearts of all sizes to hard-edged skull and cross bone delights. These guys were buying for how they envisioned me, rather than who I was. There were other scenarios: An ex, who re-gifted a ring he kept from college and thought it would be sentimental to give me a band he’d forgotten an old girlfriend gave to him. I’ve dated guys who ‘didn’t get the point of diamonds’ but were head over heels for CZ, thought that faux was fabulous even upon turning my neck an interesting tint of orange. I had earrings that weighed as heavy on my lobes as ill-fated romances on my heart. There were whimsical charms, which were fun in the beginning, but like the rest of these pieces had about the same endurance as the relationships they represented.
And, so I decided to get the goods for myself. I started a while before “the self-purchaser” had become a catch phrase for women who no longer waited for their significant others or loved ones to buy them jewelry but decided they would do it themselves. This demographic, made up of confident woman who know their taste, are aware of what they can and can’t pull off and the pieces that work with their lifestyle, has been increasing in number and I for one, am quite happy to see it and share the high.
For years, women were okay with buying designer fashion, handbags and shoes but were conditioned to feel guilty about purchasing jewelry. Like Mae West, they had believed that it should be a gift from a man.
I was once one of these women and would plunk down my credit card for Prada handbags and boots, Loro Piana cashmere sweaters and Ann Demeulemeester clothes, (to mention just a few of my fashion favs and vices–much of which took me longer to pay then some of the jewelry I own) A Milanese ex-boyfriend, with a fear of diamonds (or anything else that “is forever”) had an eye for well-made outerwear and bought me leather jackets in all styles and lengths but froze anytime we went near a jewelry store.
After clearing out my closets, and my past from pieces and relationships that did not work for me, I learned that it might be easier to find a right hand ring than the right man. (although I am still hoping for one of those too)
My advice: You don’t need another black dress from Barney’s, four-inch heel Blahnik boots, or this year’s Balenciaga bag. Jewelry offers longevity and if you choose wisely, will flatter your best qualities.
And while it’s nice to have a guy around, you definitely can make yourself feel worthy of a little shimmer and shine!
Some suggestions for a few gems you might want to buy for yourself: Moritz Glik’s sapphire and diamond earrings, Megan Thorne’s three-dimensional lacy earrings, Todd Reed’s rose and polished rough cut diamond rings, John Apel’s rose cut diamond key pendants, Emily Keifer’s bypass rose cut diamond ring, Cathy Waterman’s stained glass pattern earrings and Temple St Clair’s moonstone and 18K gold locket.