Fashion’s Digital Jewelry Prints

Jewelry lovers, take note—technology has enabled fashion designers to capture some of the visual beauty of jewelry on fabric. This season, as Suzy Menkes writes in the September issue of Harper’s Bazaar: “Prints go wild in the digital era. There are kooky landscapes or vastly blown-up flowers and the madcap embrace of any object captured on film and played with on iPad.” Some of those objects are jewels.

Oscar de la Renta utilizes the allure of diamonds blown up to huge proportions in the bijoux print design seen to the left above in an ad from the September 2012 issue of Harper’s Bazaar. The dress to the right is adorned with clusters of huge faux pearls for a three-dimensional effect.

Here’s the first page of a two-page Oscar de la Renta ad from the September 2012 issue of Elle featuring a skirt and dress printed with what diamond jewelry designs.

The second page of the Oscar de la Renta ad from the September 2012 issue of Elle includes  prints of oversized multi-hued jewels. Notice that all the models in the de la Renta ad are adorned with actual jewelry that has some commonality with the fabric prints but does not match the jewels seen in the prints.

Diane von Furstenberg chose a digital print of chains, oversized links covering the fabric of a dress in the above ad from the September 2012 issue of Elle. The dress is accessorized with a chain link bracelet of huge links and a handbag with chain link detail.

The September 2012 issue of Elle reports that jewelry designer Kimberly McDonald has a created a line of home goods, such as the Lucite box topped with rock crystals shown upper right above, and “sliced-amethyst-geode-printed silks particularly stunning on a pair of throw pillows” (not pictured). The page also reports on a capsule collection of mod gold ball-studded baubles, including the cuff shown, created by Isaac Manevitz, the founder of the Ben-Amun costume jewelry label, inspired by jewelry he designed for Jackie O. in the late 1980s.

The jewelry prints are related to a trend toward significant ornamentation of garments worn with additional bejeweled accessories. An excellent preview of this “razzle-dazzle” is found in a two-page spread in the June/July 2012 issue of Harper’s Bazaar. The first page of the spread is shown above. The embellished looks appear in the top row; the bottom row shows examples of another trend:  military-inspired looks.

Here is the second page of the June/July Harper’s Bazaar spread. The magazine commences its analysis of these fashions with the text: “FORGET STATEMENT JEWELRY: Fall’s clothes are embellished, embroidered, and bejeweled enough to make an heirloom-quality impact all on their own.”

Don’t take that directive literally. While it is true that much of the season’s fashions are heavily embellished, the looks are almost always accompanied by jewelry, and the jewelry is large and substantial. Both the Oscar de la Renta and the Diane von Furstenberg looks above demonstrate this. By no means forget statement jewelry—it is a key element of looking fashionable this season. Watch for much more on this significant trend in my upcoming blog posts.