Heart Jewelry Because We Need More Love

We’ve talked about heart jewelry here on JCK countless times. A true classic, the icon is always in demand, though it continues to come to us in new iterations, touched by new perspectives and meanings.

Like the rainbow, a symbol of the heart has also seen sort of a renewal as we’ve weathered through the pandemic. When everything feels like it sucks (there’s really just no eloquent way to state the obvious), we begin to cherish the things that are good.

Love is the strongest thing in the world, and now it feels ever stronger. We’re more appreciative of what we have, who we have to love. We miss our friends, family, and colleagues—their absence make our hearts grow fonder. Some of our hearts are breaking, some have downright broken. But the heart remains a central theme as we navigate our trials and tribulations—and triumphs too.

Expressing your love and showing you care—mostly from afar—has become the norm, one of the beautiful side effects of a seemingly never-ending storm. It’s everywhere you look—from Facebook’s addition of a “care” reaction (as opposed to a simple “like” or “love”) to the recent #womensupportingwomen movement on Instagram. And social media is just one place you can see it.

Mateo Secret Heart necklace
Secret Heart necklace in 14k yellow and white gold with crystal quartz and 0.6 ct. t.w. diamonds, $1,950; Mateo
Ariel Gordon heart bracelet
Heart catch cuff in 14k yellow gold with ruby, $1,195; Ariel Gordon

That’s why I feel like heart jewelry is yet again renewed. Over the last few years, it’s seen a renaissance of utter coolness, in-demand designers putting their spin on what once was merely a romantic gift or something you might buy for your mom.

Brent Neale Puff heart pendant
Large Puff heart pendant in 18k yellow gold with 16.9 cts. natural coral and 0.63 ct. t.w. baguette diamonds, $4,950; Brent Neale

But heart jewelry has expanded its reach, changing and evolving like many other styles and categories in our industry. Heart jewelry is a wonderful self-gift, a gift for a friend, a statement to be made. It says “I love you,” but it says so much more. Now a piece of heart jewelry sent to a friend might say “I miss you,” it might say “hang in there” to an ailing acquaintance or relative. Designers have been using the heart to help share that love, to spread those messages. One recent example is the friendship necklace from Established Jewelry, profiled by Emili Vesilind back in April when we felt like we were in the thick of it (though come to find out, we still are).

Theo Fennell rainbow heart necklace
Rainbow heart outline charm in 18k white gold with multicolor gemstones, price on request; Theo Fennell
Ileana Makri Heart Beat earrings
Heart Beat earrings in 18k and 22k yellow gold with diamonds, price on request; Ileana Makri
Foundrae Amate Vestige heart medallion
Amate Vestige heart medallion in 18k yellow gold with 0.4 ct. t.w. diamonds, $5,595; Foundrae

Other hearts make an even greater statement. The onyx broken heart pendant recently created by Harwell Godfrey (100% of its proceeds go to the NAACP) was done so in response to the black community’s struggle for justice. Founder Lauren Godfrey’s design is exceptional, and other designers and brands have offered black hearts in fundraising efforts too.

Never Not Show n Tell ring
Show n Tell Ready 2 Burst ring in 18k yellow gold with diamonds, £2,000 ($2,597); NeverNot
Sylva and Cie mammoth bone heart pendant
Heart pendant in 18k white gold with mammoth bone and diamonds, price on request; Sylva & Cie

So a heart isn’t really just a heart anymore—I don’t know if really it ever was. Now it feels absolute in its power, a silhouette for good any which way you cut it. I’ve highlighted some of my recent favorites here, perfectly acceptable as a self-purchase or gift when we all need it most.

Top: Friendship necklace in 14k yellow gold with 0.07 ct. t.w. diamonds, $600; Luvente

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JCK Contributing Editor

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