The Mother of a Guide to Selecting Wedding Jewelry

A child’s wedding is a landmark event. Among the details of planning a wedding, focusing on the bride and the habit of putting themselves last, many mothers don’t fully appreciate that the jewelry they wear at the wedding will become even more full of sentiment as future grandchildren look upon the wedding album photos.  

Next to the wedding couple, the mothers are the focus of attention at the ceremony and reception.  Most mothers of the bride or groom are over 40, and there are different considerations for choosing jewelry flattering the more mature us.  We want to be remembered gracefully in those wedding albums, while feeling vital and current.  

Jewelry to Flatter the Mature Us.
 
I typically advise planning clothing around jewelry, since  jewels endure and fashions have a “wear by” date.  In selecting an ensemble for your child’s wedding, there can be a lot of indecision and searching.  Since neither clothing nor jewel is a casual purchase, it may be most prudent to work back and forth between dress and jewels, envisioning and editing as you proceed…..as my friend Elizabeth did.
 
Elizabeth and I have been friends for seven years – a friendship based on love of family, animals, beauty and loyal support in time of need.  Soon after her daughter became engaged, Elisabeth turned to me for jewelry wardrobing help. You can also contact me for help with your jewelry project.

 Learning how Elizabeth selected her mother of the bride jewelry can help you better wear and select your jewelry.  

Consider Color and Coloring    

Elizabeth has a sleek, classic style and had chosen a stunning midnight blue silk taffeta dress with cabbage roses woven into the fabric.  In wearing a strapless dress, the décolleté becomes its own jewel, and this dress showcases Elizabeth’s beautiful skin, shoulders, blonde hair and blue eyes. 
 
She selected new wedding jewelry featuring gems in peachy-pink hues that glow with her beautiful coloring and echo the wedding’s color theme (flowers from the wedding in photo above).  Since the gems in her wedding jewels are gently hued and perfectly faceted, they reflect light with a quiet power that holds strong next to the expanse of dark midnight dress, while not distracting from it.  Jewelry and dress strengthen each other, not detract from each other or from Elizabeth.
 
I heard there was a perfect chord…..

I think of colors and color combinations as musical notes and chords.  When colors play well together, they can be a symphony.  In combining color and texture, we want a tension that keeps the viewer’s attention, yet is balanced.  Too much “sound” can be blaring; too much harmony can be bland.  What I want to avoid is the color equivalent of elevator music or the cacophony of blaring bass from the car next to you at the stoplight.  

Match Game

Matching all the same color of gem and dress can be pretty yet is a one-note melody.  Elizabeth and I strove to find the perfect balance of color notes between the jewelry and her magnificent dress.  If she selected blue sapphire or tanzanite jewelry, it would not stand out from the color of her dress. No need to play matchy-matchy.
 
Meeting up in Manhattan last summer, Elizabeth & I played  with earrings from my boutique.  Which do you think she chose? 

Elizabeth chose a pair of peach topaz and pink tourmaline earrings worn with a pinkish purple pearl drop. They glow like candlelight and softly contrast with her dress while playing up her creamy blonde coloring.  To the earrings, she added a pair of naturally colored pink pearls with our Progressive Pearls system giving her the option to wear the pearls as a chic stud or as a drop on the earrings plus we did later make her a diamond earring jacket to wear with the pearls out of some diamonds from a piece she no longer wore. 

The earrings that couldn’t be worn with Elizabeth’s gown, can be seen in our sale catalog.
Earrings Have a Sweet Spot..
 
Earrings are the quintessential wedding party adornment. They brighten our face – light us up.  When people tell us they love our earrings, we feel energized knowing they are telling us that we look great!    
 
Drop earrings can be very flattering by visually elongating the jawline and neck, while drawing attention away from the effects of gravity’s constant.  As we age, there becomes a sweet spot for earring length. 
 
Earrings too long, and we can look droopy.  Too short, and we miss the flattering elongating effect. You must try the earrings on with your dress and hairstyle – a length that looks smashing with a strapless grown may take up too much visual real estate worn with the coverage of a turtleneck sweater. 
 
A “Wonder Bra” for your Ears
 
For many of us, over time the hole pierced for earrings has been ripped or stretched, making it challenging to wear fine earrings because they tip forward or droop.  There are a few ways around this. 
  
Re-Piercing
In my early 40’s, I got a plastic surgeon to sew up my ear holes and re-pierce them after they healed.  This wasn’t the perfect solution – the surgeon was male and wasn’t the best person to understand positioning of ear holes vis-a-vis earring wear and the scar tissue from my healed holes prevented re-piercing in the same spot. 

 
Instead, I recommend going to a busy mall store like Claires for ear piercing. I am convinced. The saleswomen there pierce more ears than any jewelry store or plastic surgeon plus they understand how to wear earrings.  Don’t be thrown if they are covered in tattoos or have many body piercing- they are experts at piercing.
 
Recently, two clients just had new holes pierced slightly above their old stretched ones.  When they wear their new earrings, nobody will see the earlier hole, as the earring will cover it.  
 
Lift with the Right Friction Back
Besides re-piercing, the type of backs for your earrings play a huge part in supporting your earring.  I make a “parabolic back” (shown right with pearls) where the gold saucer distributes the weight of the earring more evenly – like a “wonder bra” for earlobes.  I also have a few more tricks in my pocket – contact me and I can find the right one to help any earring tipping problems.  

 
Like the Ring of It
 
Several months after choosing her earrings, Elizabeth selected a Trellis ring from my boutique, in a similarly glowing peach topaz.  The gem sits in a woven “trellis” basket woven trellis and its color also shine through the trellis frames.  (Our sale catalog has some Trellis rings too.) 

Elizabeth is an accomplished floral designer and flower gardens are my inspiration for the ring design. So, this is a ring that speaks to her everyday life that she will enjoy behind the wedding.  She can wear it with the earrings, with pearl studs; alone or stacked with other band rings; with her wedding gown or at Sunday brunch.  Her cat Blueboy warmed up to her ring too.
 
Plan your lipstick and nail polish to work with the color of the gems!

Necklace Considerations

Because of the texture in Elizabeth’s dress and her simple-chic style, she didn’t wear a necklace.  Less can be much more giving the eye a clear focal point:  Elizabeth, is wearing her jewelry, not the jewelry wearing Elizabeth.  Instead of a necklace, she found a blue sheared mink caplet to cover her shoulders during the ceremony. 
 
If you want to wear a big necklace – scale back the earrings to studs so the eye knows where to land and isn’t visually distracted.  If you choose to go with big statement earrings, choose a necklace that is simple and chic, or none at all.  
 
Another reality of aging is that we usually need to adjust our necklaces to be slightly longer than those we wore at 28.  I used to wear 16-18 inch necklaces.  Now, 22 inches is my go-to length because it is more flattering to add visual space between my neck and the necklace.  It visually elongates, drawing the eye away from aging effects on my jawline and neck. The more massive the necklace, the longer it should be.  
 
After the Party 

Elizabeth choose new jewelry for the wedding, but she continue her wear far after the event.  They reflect her style, her refined sense of color and distaste for big fussy bling.  She can dress it up or down – from the wedding to Sunday brunch.
 
She can wear the peach topaz and pink tourmaline earrings with and without the pearl drops. While they are very striking in the way they reflect the light, they are also neutral so she can wear them with a wide variety of clothing colors.
 
She can wear the pearls four ways:  as studs, as drops for her earrings, she can wear drops with her pearl studs and with new diamond jackets we made taking diamonds from old pieces she no longer wore.

Elizabeth’s new Mother of the Bride Jewelry
(Worn with her wedding ring set and bracelets from her collection.)

    
“Trellis” Ring featuring 7.15 ct. Peach Topaz, set in 18 karat
white and rose golds.
 
“Blush” earrings featuring a pair of 12.08 carat Peach Topaz and 1.30 carats of Pink Tourmaline,
set in 14 karat white gold.
 
Kasumiga naturally colored Pink-Purple Pearls with our Progressive Pearls system allowing her to
remove the studs and use the earrings as drops.
 
We made Elizabeth a pair of earring jackets for her pearl studs featuring diamonds we repurposed
from jewelry she no longer wore.
 

Would you like a pair of removable earring jackets, like we made for Elizabeth?
We can use your gems or ours (diamond or colored).

To order complete using our diamonds:  $2850 in 18 kt gold with approximately

0.82 carats of diamonds (six-3.2 mm rounds)