If it’s possible for something to be simultaneously the world’s most impractical, and the most covetable, baby gift, then the designers behind Bario Neal have succeeded mightily with the debut of their new collection. Titled Baby & Child, it’s a line of slim, hammered 14k gold bangles for moms (or any parental type) and little ones that can be engraved with someone’s name or a meaningful word such as Blessed or Hope. Or even Mama, as the case may be.
Assorted Keepsake bangles in 14k gold, from $304 each
The baby bangles are intended for wear up to 18 months; there is a also toddler size (ages 2 to 4) and one for children ages 5 to 13. The Guardian bangle is for grown-ups. A matching set would be make great a Mother’s Day gift, whether you view Junior’s itty-bitty bangle as a legit accessory or a keepsake for show (much like the Tiffany & Co. silver bubble wand I received with great pleasure for my daughter’s first birthday, which will likely remain in its pouch).
Keepsake baby bangle in sterling silver, $83
If this baby-gift idea strikes you as painfully bougie, keep in mind that during the 1800s and early 1900s, babies were often presented with jewelry to be worn for special occasions and photo sittings. The estate jewelry market is crawling with examples of teensy baby bangles form the Victorian era, and there are also vintage silver Navajo examples set with turquoise and coral. Fairy-size baby rings were also common but would definitely be considered a health hazard by today’s standards.
The Baby & Child collection reflects Bario Neal’s desire to create something with substance to give in lieu of a yet another teething toy or swaddle blanket. Something that’s not made of plastic but rather crafted with quality materials, which can perhaps also serve as a way to teach a budding jewelry lover about the value of precious objects. Or at least take bébé’s fascination with shiny things to a whole new level.
My little meatball would probably bang it on the coffee table incessantly or chomp it to the point of corrosion, but, of course, I’d take one in my size and maybe slip it her way when she’s a little older.
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