If international fashion shows are the arbiters of jewellery taste, then there’s nothing stylish about being diminutive in 2023! The AW23 catwalks were full of high-octane glamour, including enormous earrings at Balmain, body chains at Gucci, oversized neckwear at Schiaparelli, ear climbing hoops at Valentino, and layered chain necklaces at Vivienne Westwood. This size and scale are easy to achieve in non-precious materials, but it doesn’t always translate into fine and high jewellery when gold and gemstones come at a premium. Instead, it’s the sense of confidence, standing out from the crowd, and the spirit of self-expression that has translated into this season’s biggest fine jewellery trends. We might not see quite the same adventurism as the runways of London or Paris, but we can certainly see a flair for the dramatic. Let’s take a look…
Pop of Colour
With the quiet luxury aesthetic in full swing, there’s a definitive fashion palette this season of tan, camel, nude, stone, black, and white… imagine a sleek and sophisticated capsule wardrobe. However, some designers simply couldn’t ignore the allure of colour, using signature shades as accents, pops, and show-stopping additions to looks. On the AW23 catwalks, there were hits of teal and red, a pink jumper tied around the waist at Bottega Veneta, a blue cover-up at Botter, and red shoes against a head-to-toe black look at Prada. Now, imagine this achieved through minerals, whether a bold cabochon cocktail ring, a beautiful hardstone long-line necklace, or a statement bracelet. The trick to styling the trend is ensuring the rest of your look is neutral, drawing the eye to a bright adornment in the most electric shade you can find.
Set aside your delicate ditties this season because chunky vibes abounded on the AW23 catwalks. Look to Louis Vuitton, especially for its knuckle duster-inspired multi-finger rings in shiny silver against matte black. The same look was spotted at Givenchy, while Chanel opted for a layered look, combining vintage-looking clusters with signet shapes. Mixing metals and materials is no longer ‘taboo’ either, and both looks were seen across the season’s shows. Dive into your jewellery collection and pull out the rings you adore, whether they’re crafted with fine or costume materials, and mix and match to achieve the look. To avoid looking messy and mismatched, choose a signature piece (the ultimate chunky ring) and build a concoction of pieces around it that support its beauty, complement its colours, and continue to tell the same story.
All About Ears
Earrings are always on-trend in one form or another, but we’ve seen a shift this winter. Rather than just being big for the sake of being big (attention-grabbing but not nuanced in terms of design), this season’s earrings are design-orientated and more artful, intending to grab attention and maintain the conversation. There were asymmetric pieces at Fendi and Gucci, golden hoops at Valentino, enormous sparkling orbs at Balmain, and face-framing sparklers at Prabal Gurung. However, two earring-centric looks, in particular, caught our attention here at KaterinaPerez.com. As demonstrated by Dolce & Gabbana, Ferragamo and Versace, the first was big, round, and flat coins pressed to the ear lobes like radiating suns around the face. I’ve seen similar examples of earrings like this recently by Elizabeth Gage, De Beers, Luvor, and David Yurman, so I am excited to see how the trend develops this season. Secondly, there was the combination of outlandish earrings and formal work attire at Alexander McQueen. We typically consider big earrings a party-appropriate look, but who said they can’t be worn to the office?
The Look-at-Me Bracelet
One of the must-have accessories for 2022 was a statement cuff bracelet, and this trend hasn’t gone away. However, on the AW23 runways of Saint Laurent and Fendi, the look was more paired-back, sharp, androgynous, relying on shape and silhouette rather than lashings of colourful stones. At Schiaparelli, there were big swathes of yellow gold-toned cuffs to demand attention. We’ve transitioned from wearing two matching cuffs on either wrist in 2022 to a single showstopping creation in 2023. The high jewellery interpretation of this is a piece that requires the wearer to spin their wrist and showcase a bracelet from all angles! Recent examples include a carved agate creation by Neha Dani, the Urban Bloom bracelet by Pomellato, the Tasaki Flourish cuff from the Atelier 6: Nature’s Spectacle collection, and Alessio Boschi’s Harem’s Garden suite.
Hearts and Flowers
Forget Valentine’s Day! Hearts and flowers have emerged as a key trend for the winter season. There were floral crowns at Dior (very reminiscent of the Chaumet Blé head ornament in the Le Jardin de Chaumet High Jewellery collection), floral earrings at Chanel and Givenchy, and floral prints at Richard Quinn, Erdem, Jil Sander, Carolina Herrera and Emilia Wickstead. At Nina Ricci, flowers were placed around the neck, like living chokers of petals. Heart shapes emerged as a trend in the summer and have maintained dominance since. I recently spoke to the team at German gem dealer Groh + Ripp, who said they’ve seen a big demand for heart-shaped stones. Gucci also had some sizeable hearts in its Allegoria High Jewellery collection, while Robinson Pelham and Messika also had some attractive hearts this year. If you are looking at your jewellery box and thinking, ‘Where is the love?’ you may need to invest!
Let’s not forget some of the season’s more nuanced trends worthy of special mention. Paco Rabanne, Chloe, and Stella McCartney highlighted an obsession with body jewellery, including waist chains and decorative decolletage adornments. Seeing their interpretations of body jewellery made me reminisce on the collaboration between Valérie Messika and Kate Moss. It also helps to explain the latest Swarovski x SKIMS collection of wearable crystal creations. Next, there were layered necklaces galore at Roberto Cavalli, Chanel, Etro, Vivienne Westwood and Zimmermann, proving that the ‘neck mess’ trend isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. And, finally, tennis bracelets and Riviere necklaces are back, big time! Long lines of stones capture the sleek, cool, and effortless glamour of the season, so dig out those jewellery box favourites and give them their moment in the (winter) sun.
The biggest takeaway for AW23 is the fact that there are no rules. All trends point to exuberant self-expression, where colour, shapes, proportions and combinations are all open to interpretation. Even if the above trends don’t rock your world, the trick is simply to pick what reflects your personality and dial it up to eleven. If you can do that, you’re going to have a fabulously creative winter season… rain and snow be damned!