Inspired by the 1970s, texture goes to new depths with designs constructed of macramé and crochet this season. The texture adds interest to a muted color palette that stands in contrast to the neons and bright hues running on a parallel fashion track. These openwork woven designs can present the practical issue of catching on anything less than completely smooth (be mindful of earring dangles, bracelet clasps and watch stems!), but jewelry chosen with care is proving to be the perfect finishing touch.
In the May 2011 issue of InStyle, the magazine’s Fashion Director Cindy Weber Cleary writes: “Summer neutrals beg for texture: pleats, sparkle, open knits, embroidery, crochet, ruching, perforated suede, and macramé. You can wow in one hue head to toe if you vary the texture.” While the fashion spread does not picture any jewelry, Cleary shares what she calls “my secret”: “A flash of sparkle, whether it’s an accessory or an under-pinning, heightens these looks.”
Most of the stylings of woven that appear in the fashion magazines are looks are accessorized with bold jewels. For example, an elaborate textured dress in deep blue from Emilio Pucci is accompanied by modernistic earrings from Alexis Bittar in the May 2011 issue of Marie Claire.
A hand-crocheted cotton dress from Ralph Lauren Collection is accented with turquoise bracelets from Ralph Lauren Vintage in the February 2011 issue of Elle.
The feature “Spring Fashion A to Z” in the March 2011 issue of Marie Claire assigns the letter C to crochet: “Send a textural message with ‘70s-inspired woven fabrics in seaside shades of blue, stone, and pink sand.” The March issue of Marie Claire also pictures a coquettish model wearing elaborate woven pants from Just Cavalli and an open-weave hat from Inverni with nothing more other than a pair of rings from Melissa Joy Manning worn on one finger.
The most extreme of the woven designs cannot take jewelry, as in the case of this oval dot-perforated jacket from Marni worn with an open weave dress from Jen Kao over a bikini from Salvatore Ferragamo, pictured in the March 2011 issue of Marie Claire. Between the perforated ovals and the fishnet texture of the dress, only the very smoothest accessory avoids the risk of catching on the apparel.
The April 2011 issue of Marie Claire devotes an entire page to ivory-colored macramé and crochet separates that “make California girls unforgettable.” Along with the sportswear designs, the spread includes a large pendant necklace from Freedom at Topshop, a pair of tassel necklaces from Banana Republic, and long fringed earrings from Freedom at Topshop.
Ugg Australia presents an ad in the May 2011 issue of InStyle in which the model wears a crocheted bathing suit cover up along with a detailed cuff bracelet of similar detail and scale as the crochet of the top.
An ad for Gucci features a dress with woven detail down the front and around the waist, worn with a wide matching cuff bracelet that keeps the entire ensemble within a neutral color palette.
A current ad for Dior features a crocheted dress in shades of blue accompanied by bright earrings and a matching bracelet in a bright orange-coral design, the color compliment of the blue of the dress, which makes both colors pop.
An intriguing alternative to wearing macramé or crochet apparel is to wear jewelry that itself is constructed of woven materials. Crocheted metal jewelry designs by Montreal-based designer Arielle de Pinto are featured in the April 2011 issue of Elle.
There are a number of jewelry designers who weave precious metals into exceptional designs. I hope we’ll be seeing much more of their work highlighted in the press over the course of the summer.