How classic pearls turned hip

Held dear throughout history for its opalescence, simplicity and brightness, the Pearl is a long-standing fashion icon.

The semi-precious gem has experienced a rebirth in present-day culture. Modernizing the pearl in fashion design has again declared the pearl a must-have. That’s right, it’s time to rummage through your jewelry box and look for those beautiful hand me downs.

Gracing the necks of people today… of the stars, queens, your grandmother, men and women alike (see our article Pearls and the Men Who Rock Them), are the historic freshwater gem, the Pearl. 

Having long held men and women in their thrall as symbols of virginity or trophies of excess, Pearls are no longer associated with purity or elitism. After Pearls had earned a reputation as stuffy, high brow and out of date, designers began to utilize them differently.

Today, pearls are enjoying a re-entry into the spotlight. The Everyman’s gem is here to stay. But how did this resurgence come about in the fashion world? What makes the Pearl something new?

Many young women are looking to reinvent their grandmother’s pearl collection into something more suited to their style. Common trends like layering and stacking necklaces, mixing gems with pearls, and incorporating sculptural elements to the jewelry, are modernizing the pearl in fascinating ways.

Designers are utilizing the smooth, lustrous appeal of pearls and its associations of purity, and then shockingly fixing them to boots, headbands, backpacks and any accessory you can name.

Mockingly large pearls are being printed and worn by celebrities like Usher. Pearls are the discussion. From family heirlooms to contemporary styles, pearls continue to be an iconic piece in every collection. 

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