B is for Brooch

Buttons, zippers, buckles, hook & eye, and velcro. Before the advent of these modern fasteners, there was the brooch.

brooch fashion jewelry

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Although brooches are merely just decorative jewelry pieces nowadays, they once had a utilitarian purpose. The earliest form was called a fibula brooch. Resembling a safety pin, it was used to hold garments together on the body. From the draped peplos tunics of Roman yore to the heavy cloaks in early medieval dress, brooches were used throughout history and in many cultures. Sometimes, even the design of the brooch served to reveal something about the wearer, like their rank or affiliation in society.

fibula / peplos / cloak

Eventually as innovation ensued, the functional necessity of the brooch was no longer needed. Yet the brooch still remains one of my favorite go to accessories to adorn the shoulder of my cardigan or the lapel of my coat. Vintage brooches can be found at thrift shops, but even department stores like Macy’s have great options for inexpensive costume jewelry.

With buttons fastening the front of my blouse, I can focus taking my brooching to a whole new decorative level.

1. All tied up: A feminine take on a masculine necktie, excessive accessorizing is key.
fashion jewelry brooch

2. Belt it out: A fabric belt or a wide ribbon tied around the waist will also do. The result is a burnished belt worthy of the wrestling ring.

fashion jewelry brooch

3. Beret, oh hey: A classic Chic Vic move, even the rookiest of broochers can pull this off.

fashion jewelry brooch

4. Off the chain: All you need is a chain with links large enough for the pin of the brooch to needle through. Voilà, that brooch has become a pendant necklace.

fashion jewelry brooch

And there you have it, the fascinating history of fasteners! How do you like to wear your brooch?

Art Deco the Halls

I can’t seem to get enough of the fashion, the booze, the dancing and the parties that classified the Jazz Era. But while I have my Gatsby outfit all ready to go for my holiday party, I still need to get decked out in some fa la la la la la la la la – in the form of Art Deco jewelry.

Art Deco has its roots in the 1920s and influenced everything from interior design and architecture, to decorative arts, and even jewelry. The main characteristics of Art Deco are the use of geometry, symmetry, ornamentation, and rich colors.

On my wish list from Chloe and Isabel is a little bit of everything: drop earrings, a cocktail ring, a statement necklace, and a stunning bracelet. If you’re not into rockin’ the rhinestones, at bare minimum, you should have some blingin’ barrettes in your perfectly coiffed bob.

Tis’ the season of giving, receiving, and everything in between. If Santa is reading this, there’s no reason why I shouldn’t expect a little surprise in my stocking this year, and it better be shiny.

Art Deco the Halls