Hair Jewelry, Fall 2012 Style

Back on March 19, I wrote: “Jeweled headbands and barrettes have been appearing regularly in the fashion press since last autumn in anticipation of the holiday season… Hair adornments have proved to be so popular that their presence is ongoing this spring as well.”

The trend continues as we approach the 2012 holiday season. Bejeweled barrettes and combs remain popular, to be sure, but even more interesting and unusual are a wide variety of hair adornments created with repurposed jewelry—brooches, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces creatively pinned into the hair.

The September 2012 issue of Town & Country features a variety of fine jewelry and designer costume designs for the hair: a horn hair comb from Macklowe Gallery Art Nouveau, Siman Tu “pearl hair jewelry,” a Fred Leighton 19th century gold tiara, a Lalique jeweled comb, a Rodarte star-studded headpiece, and a Chanel hair band.

The September 2012 issue of Allure provides “10 Rules for Wearing Hair Accessories,” discussing how to wear headbands, barrettes, bobby pins, and ribbons. One of the rules: “Crown with jewels.”

“Brooches, pins, or earrings can be gorgeous with braids and chignons,” says hairstylist Odile Gilbert. “Place them around the base of a bun or above one ear to hold shorter layers. Expert tip: Secure them by tying on floral wire and looping that through hair.”

Swarovski crystal bracelets from Shourouk adorn a long braid in this fashion styling from the August 2012 issue of Elle. The model also wears “Painted pearl earrings” from Tom Binns Design. Her dress is from Stella McCartney and leather fanny pack from Moschino.

In the Sept. 24, 2012 “Best & Worst Dressed” issue of People, French actress Marion Cotillard’s jewelry is named as one of the “Best Accessories” as chosen by Olivia Palermo. About Cotillard: “Anything she does, she does with Old Hollywood femininity and French effortlessness. She always incorporates elegant pieces with what she’s wearing.” More specifically, “making a necklace into a hairpiece is a new, different take on accessorizing.” The necklace and ring shown in close-up are both from Chopard.

In the September 2012 issue of Vogue, Leslie Camhi rhapsodizes about the season’s opulent neo-Baroque jewels, including bandeaux pinned with brooches, chokers, and tiaras, which “frame the face in dramatic—and deeply flattering—ways.” Among her conclusions: “Big jewels = take-charge personality. (Elizabeth Taylor understood this equation well.) Yet, however empowering, they also appeal to the little girl within us all.” Pictured above is a look from Oscar de la Renta and a faceted-stone necklace from that designer.

Glamour magazine’s September 2012 issue also looks to Oscar de la Renta for inspiration in a piece entitled “Accessories for Your Hair! Here’s how to pull off the gorgeous new hair-jewelry thing.” Glamour reports: “The trend kicked off at Oscar de la Renta’s fall show, where Orlando Pita did faux bobs with jeweled headpieces. The DIY way: First, tease your crown. Next, pop a brooch onto a ribbon, and tie it on tight. Last, do a loose, low pony, fold it under, and pin it at the nape.”

Glamour also notes that celebrities are accessorizing their hair with all kinds of bling and suggests another Do-It-Yourself approach: “Wind a gem-encrusted necklace or a gold chain around a low chignon. Secure with bobby pins. Now, keep everything else simple (only basic earrings, and no necklaces, please!).

Tiaras are making an appearance again. The November 2012 issue of Elle reports: “No longer reserved for princesses and brides, the new toned-down tiara does best with nestled into an unfussy updo like Kirsten Dunst’s.” Along with Dunst, Elle shows a current Dolce & Gabbana tiara design along with a vintage photo of Elizabeth Taylor wearing a diamond tiara and drop earrings.

The October 2012 issue of Glamour has a slightly different take on the tiara, viewing Kirsten Dunst’s look as a “flower-child halo,” a “romantic update on the skinny headband,” as also seen on celebrities Jaime King, Ashlee Simpson, and Keira Knightley.

Allure‘s “10 Rules for Wearing Hair Accessories” has yet another view of tiaras: “Not cool,” adding: “Paris Hilton. Miss America. Toddlers and. . .you get the point. ‘Tiaras carry way too many references—both high and low—to be fresh and original,’ says hairstylist Orlando Pita. Steer clear, unless it’s Halloween or you’re Queen Elizabeth and it’s your Diamond Jubilee.”

The October 2012 issue of Harper’s Bazaar, however, begs to differ. On “The List—This month’s objects of desire,” the editors feature an elaborate tiara of gold leaves from U.K. designer Polly Gasston. Also pictured is a David Webb ring and a cuff with a surreal influence by Delfina Delettrez.

Given the style influence of Kate Middleton, the Duchess of Cambridge, with her fondness for fascinators and other adornments in her hair, and the overall British influence on American style, I expect we will see tiaras continue to make inroads into American fashion. One thing’s certain: Jewelry has found an important supporting role in adorning glamorous and festive hairstyles.  

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