Accessorizing Repeated Motif Prints With Jewelry

A quick peek at the racks of clothing in stores or the pages of any fashion or celebrity-focused magazine confirms that prints are a key trend this season. Typical of the jewelry seen with especially dynamic prints are these examples from the July 2, 2012, issue of People:  

Jaime King wears tiny stud earrings and what appears to be an engagement ring with her Peter Pilotto dress seen at left. In the center, Shailene Woodley wears only a slender black bracelet of some kind with the complex print of her Mary Katrantzou dress. To the right, Eva Longoria wears only tiny hoops that hug her earlobes with a Versus dress accompanied, inexplicably, by visually distracting hot pink platform pumps.

Contrast those all-over complex prints with that of the Karen Walker dress modeled by actress-writer-director Lena Dunham in the May 2012 issue of Glamour. The print incorporates a distinct repeated and spaced motif on a colored background in hues and shapes lovely on Dunham. She wears eyeliner that picks up the blue of the print, but nary a bit of jewelry.  

While minimal jewelry is a safe choice, it certainly isn’t very interesting. When a print is based on a distinct repeated motif, the motif provides all manner of ideas for accessorizing with jewelry. The size, shape and direction of the design elements may suggest jewelry that picks up and plays off the print.

In the May 2012  issue of Glamour, actress-writer-designer Lauren Conrad wears a top and skirt from Miu Miu with mismatched repeated prints beautifully designed, so that the smaller print is used in the visually smaller area of the top. Conrad wears a pair of gold bangles from Tiffany & Co. and Gucci, as well as a delicate heart locket and chain, also from Tiffany & Co. The jewelry adds sophistication and polish to the look.


A delicate pendant necklace is also the choice to accompany a dramatic print dress by Chanel worn over Céline white paisley pants by actress Lea Seydoux in the May 2012 issue of Vogue. The necklace designer does not appear to be identified by Vogue.


In this photo from the April 2012 issue of InStyle, it’s difficult to see the design of the pendant in the Victorian necklace from Claude Morady Estate Jewelry pictured on actress Allison Williams in a repeated print coat from Miu Miu, but it appears to be a version of the symmetrical posies that appear in the print. A stylized floral motif is an easy design on which to riff.

Notice that none of the delicate necklaces are worn over a repeated print garment, and for good reason—the necklace visually could well get lost in the field of design elements. Choose a necklace that sits against the skin, bangle bracelets, or earrings that relate to the print and bring attention back up to the face.

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