Good jewelry is an investment not just an adornment.



Jewelry and Beauty on a Budget

 The selection of a lady’s jewelry is much like perfume.  You will want something that suits you and becomes your signature.  Think of how Coco Chanel was known by her Count Verdura Maltese enamel cuff bracelets that she wore all the time.  Her multiple, long ropes of pearls were also a trademark.  Former U.S. First Lady, Barbara Bush, was never without here chocker length pearls. 

When you develop your classic look you will also be developing a jewelry wardrobe that compliments your look and is flattering to you as well.  Though you may change from silver tones to gold tones from time to time, try to identify the “color tone” that is most flattering to your skin tone.  Your coloring may make silver or white gold the right choice for you.  Or, you may find that yellow gold is a better choice.  Though some can mix yellow and white gold successfully, it is probably better to pick one or the other to build your classic, individual jewelry wardrobe. 

Quality is always noticeable even by the untrained eye.  By contrast, an inferior product is also noticeable. The trick is to learn to select versatile, classic pieces of fine quality and they will never go out of style.  Despite the marketing messages, you don’t need drawers full of jewelry to be well dressed.  Carefully select a few pieces that can be worn all the time and virtually with every garment in your well assemble wardrobe.

You may want to start with a watch as that needs to be functional as well as stylish.  Search until you find just the right watch.  Don’t rush into the purchase as you have now made a commitment that this will be your watch for years to come.  Then you can gradually build your jewelry wardrobe around your style of watch.

You next selection should be earrings.  Once again, select something that will be versatile and can be worn for almost any occasion.  These basic earrings should not dangle or be so large as to interfere with the telephone or cell phone.

Purchases of good jewelry should be made from reputable jewelers only. They will be happy to help you identify the best value.  If you are getting something with a stone in it, they can advise you about the quality and durability of that particular stone.  Some, like opals, can be horrifyingly fragile and wouldn’t hold up to constant wear.  Pearls are a lovely basic in any wardrobe, however, they need care and will have to be restrung from time to time.  This is a dying art and it is very difficult to find someone who will do it.  Also, you will find that pearls come in many different colors and qualities.  Understanding the differences is very important.  It is unlikely that you, as a customer, would be able to acquire the necessary knowledge to make the right choices. This can also be said about lapis lazuli. 

In the case of pearls it is acceptable and maybe even adviseable to purchase good quality simulated pearls.  Some of the better made strands are as beautiful as real cultured pearls but vastly cheaper and durable. 

So, get a good watch and a lovely strand of simulated pearls and matching earrings.  There is almost no occasion at which this would not be appropriate.  This combination can carry you for several years as you search for just the right next piece to add to your collections.

If you get something valuable, you will want to inquire about insurance since you want to wear these pieces all of the tine and not keep them locked in your safety deposit box for fear of losing them. You will need to learn to resist the temptation to buy trendy items.  They will do nothing for your look.  You are building a unique look all your own.  You really don't want to look like everyone else.  It will amaze you how comfortable you will be with your look.  Over time, you will add pieces that will allow you to change your look from time to time.  Think of it this way, you are waiting for the day that you overhear someone say, "Oh, that is just like the piece that (fill in your own name) wears."  This means that you now have a signature piece which is to say a classic look all your own. 
There are those who claim that wearing your birthstone can bring you luck.  It is very unlikely that there is any scientific evidence to support this claim, however, you might like to give it a try. 
  • January: Garnet
  • February: Amethyst
  • March: Aquamarine
  • April:  Diamond
  • May:  Emerald
  • June: Pearl or Moonstone
  • July:  Ruby
  • August:  Peridot
  • September:  Sapphire
  • October:  Opal
  • November:  Topaz or Citrine
  • December:  Turquoise or Lapis 
You will see that the lists includes both "precious" and "semi-precious" stones. These designations are very fluid and can be influenced by popularity and availability.  Generally, however, "precious" is applied to diamond, ruby, sapphire and emerald.  In the purchase of any jewelry deal with reputable, established merchants.  In the early 50's, the Gemological Institute of America developed a grading system which is helpful when evaluating the difference between stones.  Your merchant will explain to you the 4 c's which are color, cut, clarity and carat weight.  These factors are all considered in the price and value of a stone. You may find it tempting to purchase synthetic stones because they are beautiful and very affordable.  In the words of one of our staff, however, "I'd hate to get hit in the head for a fake diamond!"  The sad reality is the bigger the sparkle, the bigger the target. 
It takes an expert to be able to measure the following designations in a stone, so we offer this information so you will have an understanding of the terminology and its relative impact.  This is not intended to suggest you can make the determinations yourself.  Always consult a certified reliable dealer. 
Diamond Clarity:

Internally Flawless minor surface blemishes

Very, very small inclusions

Very small inclusions

Small Inclusions

Inclusions visible to the naked eye

Diamond color

Exceptional white D E

Rare White  F G

White        H

Slightly tinted white   I J

Tinted white K  L

Tinted Color M N O P Q R and S-Z