Delicate Gold Jewellery AKA The Anti-Bling Ring(s)

Pure and simple, subtle and dainty are the watchwords here.

Jul 11, 2013 at 10:00am | Leave a comment

This summer my taste in jewellery has become increasingly simplified - I’m looking for things that appear as the finest glittering thread, so you can barely tell if someone’s wearing jewellery or not or if it’s just the way the light is catching their tanned skin.

I like fine jewellery - ‘fine’ in both senses – precious gold with subtle diamonds is absolutely ok with me, but also ‘fine’ in the sense that they are gossamer-light and delicate, the thinnest pieces around. Subtle and dainty are the watchwords here.

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Gold origami bird bracelet from neony, neony.co.uk

These are the opposite of cocktail rings and statement necklaces – they’re designed to fly under the radar, to barely be noticed. Which isn’t to say they need to be whimsical or twee – the clean simplicity of a stark spike piercing an earlobe or a single gold cross is just as powerful.

Catbird is THE hipster jewellers beloved of all cool fashion types in NYC – think Emily Weiss of Into the Gloss and Leandra Medine aka the Man Repeller. You can spell out any word or acronym you like with the Alphabet gold rings (but please, not YOLO, I will judge you.) Oh and they ship internationally, so we can all get a bit of that Wang-bag-carrying, denim-cut-off-wearing NYC cool.

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Catbird Alphabet ring, $96, catbirdnyc.com

Their first-knuckle rings are cult pieces now - they look like they'll slip off your finger, but they don't. They're also known as 'memory rings' as you're meant to move them from one finger to another to remind you of something you mustn't forget, a bit like the fancy gold version of tying a knot in your handkerchief (did anyone ever actually do that? Who owns a handkerchief apart from old men? They seem dreadfully unhygienic to me.)

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Catbird classic hammered first knuckle ring, $64, catbirdnyc.com

Catbird's website also stocks a wonderful range of quirky labels including Bittersweets NY who do this darling little cat ring - just look!

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Bittersweets NY cat ring, $150, catbirdnyc.com

It seems like the hottest erogenous zone to adorn with decorative jewellery is the edge of the ear - I keep seeing fashion-forward stars like Kate Bosworth wearing elaborate ear cuffs. This pearl and fly (yes, it really is a fly) earring-come-cuff from Delfina Delettrez ain't cheap, but I think it's a modern classic - just the sort of thing Wallis Simpson would choose if she were around today.

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Delfina Delettrez Yellow gold fly & pearl single earring, £326, matchesfashion.com

Alex Monroe is the master of this genre – his featherlight rings and famous gold necklaces are exactly the right price point – not out-of-reach pricey, but expensive enough to feel like you’re wearing something special (and ideal for a group clubbing together to buy a milestone birthday present for a friend).

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Alex Monroe Love Heart Ring, £120, 18ct fine twig ring, £310 and prowling fox ring, £150, alexmonroe.com

Dogeared is an American label that's stocked on ASOS - I love the quiet statement of their cross ring, so simple and chic.

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Dogeared Faith ring, £33, asos.com

Remember what I was saying about delicate jewellery not having to be too girlie or twee? I think this Whistles Spike ring perfectly illustrates that point, plus it's only £12.

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Whistles Spike ring, £12, whistles.co.uk

More from good ol' ASOS, this time from their Curve (plus size) line - a subtly kinky handcuff bracelet in butter-wouldn't-melt delicate gold finish.

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ASOS Curve handcuff ditsy bracelet, £6, asos.com

H&M's gloriously affordable earrings are a more subtle way to do the 'ear-embellishment' thing - I love that strand of gold chain hanging from the arrow, it's so cool.

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H&M earrings £3.99, hm.com

A simple gold bangle like this Monica Vinader one will never go out of style - imagine it hanging from a tanned wrist (preferably clutching an Aperol Spritz), the epitome of summer elegance.

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Monica Vinader Gold-Plated Sterling Silver Fiji Chain Bracelet £175, liberty.co.uk