If you think about it, there are many things that can pass for an anklet. Remember those yellow Livestrong bracelets of the early 2000s? I wore one on my ankle my freshman year of college, making some sort of fashion statement (or maybe just feeling good that a bracelet fit around my ankle?).
My point is, the look of a bejeweled ankle is somehow so striking, it’s almost an excuse to put anything there. Double up a necklace, pull on a stretchy beaded bracelet, use a scrunchie (that is a very weird one and yes, I have in fact seen it).
And yet actual anklets, those pieces crafted specifically to be worn on the parts of our body that connect our feet with our legs, are some of the most charming pieces of jewelry we can buy.
Maybe it’s the novelty of the thing. The fact that they have a carefree feel, given they only typically come out with the sun and when the temperatures rise. Our ankles, no longer obstructed by the confines of long legwear (cough, sweatpants), are finally ready to get dolled up for their time in the light.
There’s something quite sensual about an ankle chain, though why that is I can’t quite put my finger on without sounding like someone with a foot fetish (and, if that were the case, certainly I’d be taking better care of my own feet). I think it’s just the way it makes us feel, like the part of the body that keeps us upright deserves to be adorned, to be celebrated. Even when pregnancy comes along and blurs the line between your feet and your legs (again, me). And actually, that’s all the more reason to adorn that particular body part.
Anklets still aren’t necessarily jewelry store staples, not so obvious a category as bracelets or necklaces. But as more jewelers and designers offer them, I hope that can change (at least when the season is right). I’d even go so far as to say that, with the recent, refreshing gender fluidity of jewelry, men may opt to adorn their ankles, too, though I don’t find a gender-specific design to be necessary to afford that sort of wear.
Here are some of the latest and greatest—some made to be anklets, others that could flexibly fit the bill, all just right for that summery store display you’ve been waiting all winter to let shine.
Top: 5 Point anklet in 14k yellow gold with 4 mm turquoise, $575; Mateo
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