The news circulated like wildfire among jewelry journalists and publicists a few months ago. Former Elle jewelry editor Maria Dueñas Jacobs had launched a collection of stylish and playful jewels. But not for us—for our dress-up-loving kids!
Super Smalls, a new collection of costume jewelry featuring play-ready versions of classic jewelry designs including emerald-cut “diamond” cocktail rings and multicolored faux gem bracelets, felt like an idea so painfully perfect for the age of Instagram commerce (where sheer cuteness is showered with love), I felt a little slow-witted for not seeing it coming.
Then came Rosie Bold. The kids’ jewelry and accessories collection (“for bold girls”) also had a buzzy launch on Instagram. Founded by former Bloomingdales accessories buyer Sarah Pike Shapiro, the line is more mini-millennial than mini-matriarch: There are neon braided stretch bracelets and clip and magnetic enamel earrings with rainbow, heart, and daisy motifs. They’re utterly adorable.
The concept of mini-me jewelry that uses alloys (not plastic) and is built more solidly than the plastic jewels you find in Claire’s boutiques feels timely for several reasons.
Places to buy kids’ jewelry exist everywhere, of course—there’s Amazon, Michaels, department stores, Walmart, and, of course, Claire’s. But as consumers, we’re becoming more aware of the global impact of disposable plastic products. And plastic kids’ jewelry is undeniably bad for the planet. Not that either Rosie Bold or Super Smalls makes eco-friendly claims—but their jewels are designed to outlive a school year.
Both collections are relatively accessibly priced, but these aren’t $4 bracelets you pick up on a whim for your daughter on a Target run. A series of two or three jewels costs around $30 at Super Smalls, while Rosie Bold’s prices for a trio of baubles can run you up to $58. That’s significantly more expensive than your standard plastic kids’ jewelry. And considering how quickly accessories disappear in the hands (and on the earlobes and necks) of young kids, some parents may balk at the prices.
But for true-blue jewelry lovers, $30 for a kid-size jewel that affects a shrunken-down Suzanne Kalan or Andrea Forhman piece may be too delicious a prospect to pass up. And even if you don’t trust your child with $58 metal bangles (I’d personally, uh, have to think about it), both collections are ideal for gifting. Rosie Bold, in particular, sends its jewels in cute Glossier-inspired packaging covered in cheerful hand-scrawled doodles.
And in the end, the collections are designed to delight kids—and their parents. Doesn’t everyone want to see 8-year-olds romping around in a necklace dripping in Chiclet-sized pink “diamonds?” Worth the price of admission, in my book.
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