Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Five Gold Rings

Obviously this should have been a pre-Christmas post but Three Gold Rings did have quite the same, well, ring to it.

I used to wear quite a lot of jewellery. As a young teen I styled myself rigorously against the unexpectedly conservative environment I found myself in. I would hazily describe my 'look' as Pre-Emo/Pop-Goth/Rainbow-Tween/Weirdo and I accessorised with enthusiasm. It was a strange mishmash of skulls, plastic children's jewellery and craft supplies. Really I pioneered the 'arm party' with half-foot wrist guards of rubber bracelets, boiled sweet plastic beads and Claire's Accessories tat. I used weird clothes and cheap jewellery as a defense against the barrage of pashminas.

Either the twinsets wore me down or my new found sense of mid-teen sophistication demanded that I eventually put aside such childish delights. I traveled without my family to Mongolia and, briefly, Beijing when I was fifteen and returned with a pound of red jasper beads and a string of cheap black pearls. They were a bounteous haul and kicked off what I would laughingly describe as my 'world traveler' jewellery phase. To be fair, I stand by the jewellery but not by the neck ache or the tediously beige and adult clothes I thought appropriate to pair with it. I don't regret the neon pink fishnet socks of my thirteen year old self but I do regret the camel coloured v-neck of my sixteen year old self, even if it was both more sane and more flattering. Sixteen year olds, no matter how many Penguin Classics they've read or countries they've visited, deserve better than camel coloured v-necks. Sixteen year olds deserve Rookie. Most of us, those of us destined for office jobs and suburban mundanity, only have a short window in which you can truly embrace looking like a weirdo and it is a crying shame to squander that window on anything camel coloured, no matter how enthusiastic the necklaces.

I have a tendency to fixate upon objects/aesthetics and I find that the duration of these obsessions is stretching as I grow older. After I spent three months in India I spent three years wearing Rajhastani earrings and regretting only buying half a dozen pairs. They were beautiful and interesting and I might still be wearing them now if they hadn't slowly fallen apart one by one. It was probably India that finally won me around to gold. At some point, while I was wearing beige, I decided that gold didn't suit me. That may be true, I do tend towards the pasty and pallid, but I don't think camel really suited me either and I just powered straight ahead with that one. I would say that it is more likely that gold was out of fashion in the early-mid 00s. Whatever the cause, I only wore silver for years. But eventually yellow gold caught and kept my attention. It is very shiny after all. I received two gold rings for my 21st birthday and I have worn them together every day since then.

These days, although plenty of beautiful statement jewellery catches my eye, I find that all I really want to wear is a little interesting but relatively inconspicuous gold. It is probably another phase, my chic young urbanite phase (hah), but it has been nearly four years and it shows no sign of diminishing quite yet so I roll with it. I have three fixed points - the two rings and a small, emotionally significant necklace. That leaves a few fingers, my wrists and ears to play with. This is jewellery I wear almost every day, jewellery I live in.


Zoe and Morgan / Lasso Love Ring : This was also a birthday present and is also never removed but it lacks the permanence of my other two rings. I mean this quite literally. I love it and I've worn it every day for three or four years but I won't and can't wear it forever. It is gold fill and it is on its third iteration - I have had to send it back to the shop for replating and repair twice already. I own a couple of bits of Zoe & Morgan and I love their style, there's always a bunch of stuff on their site that I fancy, but it doesn't last. It falls apart and I get that they're making fashion jewellery not heritage jewellery but it is a pity. Luckily their customer service is really excellent.

Maria Francesca Pepe / Hoops with Spikes : I bought my first pair of these MFP earrings on eBay and wore them to death. Or, rather, I wore them until one came loose and fell out. I don't know how that happened since they have a good, tight clasp but accidents and all that. I lived without these earrings for a while and it was rough. They are perfect earrings, for me. They go with everything. They're gold and they're spiky but they're not too invasive. They're tough and a bit weird/unexpected but they're still relatively discreet. I don't want my jewellery to be pretty. I don't really want anything associated with me to be pretty. I appreciate pretty things but I don't identify with them and I don't want to wear them. R bought me a replacement pair of these earrings one Christmas and now I'm back to wearing them a handful of times each week. It is a great relief.

Dominic Jones : It makes me very happy that I own and can wear jewellery from Zoe & Morgan, MFP and Dominic Jones. These are jewellers with clear, specific styles/aesthetics that I really admire. I would happily wear barrels of each. I mean, I can't afford much of their jewellery full price but they each have some more affordable pieces and they all show up on eBay occasionally. Like the first pair of my MFP earrings, these were eBay and they appeal to the exact same part of me. They're gold and a bit sharp and not quite expected. They go with everything and I love them.

Ottoman Hands : Sometime, around when I was wearing v-necks and deciding that gold didn't suit me, I decided that hoop earrings didn't suit me. And now look - all three of my earrings are gold and hoop-adjacent. Suck it, sixteen year old me! You can't tell me what to do, you sensible young person who cares about what is flattering! I mean, I stand by your judgement, hoop earrings don't suit me (I presume it is something to do with my big round face? Circles emphasise my moon face?) but I find that I do not care. Also, small, hoop-ish things aren't quite so noticeable. These were a Christmas present from my soeur and I've worn them a lot in the last month. I think they go with my haircut. The stones complicate any lipstick decisions but they have a rough/unpolished tomboyishness that I enjoy.

Accessorize / Aztec Geo Triangle Ring : This was £10 from Accessorize! Everything about that statement is surprising. Obviously the extreme cheapness is surprising for any/all passable jewellery but, also, I don't have a particularly high opinion of Accessorize and I think this ring looks very Etsy/indie. It's super cute. Sure, the fake gold colouring wore off in about a fortnight of light wear and it is too big for the little finger that I'm wearing it on so I'll definitely lose it soon but it is very jolly. Fun origin story: this ring was purchased as part of a Christmas exchange. My grandparents very sweetly bought me two pairs of black S/M leggings and I managed to exchange them for a fine haul - this ring, a ponyhair leopard print clutch and a pair of socks covered in sloths! And the greatest present of all, of course, was their unwavering belief that I could fit into a sized S/M anything...

1 comment:

  1. It's taken me awhile to get stuck on gold but I'm not moving off of it anytime soon. It's lovely that you collect pieces when you travel as well. I'd be desperately afraid of losing them (the clumsy oaf that I am)

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