New Pearls for the New Twenties

There’s just something about winter that feels like prime pearl season. Maybe it’s the way a strand of pearls looks with a cozy sweater. Or the fact that we aren’t slathering on sunscreen with which to damage pearls. Or perhaps it’s the simple way a white pearl complements the snow so beautifully. Whatever the reason, and knowing full well that pearls are really an anytime, anywhere kind of jewel, if I had to assign it one season, pearl would be a winter.

Giorgio Visconti Cignus pearl earrings
Cignus earrings in white gold with pearls and 1.96 cts. t.w. diamonds, price on request; Giorgio Visconti

Whether or not you agree, this is prime time for pearl stocking. They could make someone feel very loved come Valentine’s Day, and why is it that Mother’s Day is often so associated with pearls? Regardless, that’s coming up quicker than a flash, just watch.

Prounis star sapphire clasp pearl bracelet
Bracelet in yellow gold with South Sea pearls and star sapphire clasp, price on request; Prounis
Little h Turquoise collection earrings
Turquoise collection earrings in 14k yellow gold with freshwater keshi pearls, rubies, seed pearls, and turquoise, $938; Little h
Baggins tahitian pearl pendant
Pendant in 14k white gold with 8 mm–9 mm Tahitian pearl, 0.12 ct. rose-cut diamond, and 0.06 ct. t.w. diamonds, $1,200; Baggins
Alishan platinum pearl earrings
Earrings in platinum with baroque South Sea pearls, 0.65 ct. t.w. tanzanite, and 0.14 ct. t.w. diamonds, $3,190; Alishan
Jewelmak pearl bar ring
Bar ring in 14k yellow gold with pearls, price on request; Jewelmak
Mastoloni Tulip pearl drop earrings
Tulip drop earrings in 14k yellow gold with freshwater pearls, $750; Mastoloni
Maya Brenner Perla pinky ring
Perla pinky ring in 14k yellow gold with 5 mm pearl, $500; Maya Brenner x Sarah Hendler
DSL Pearl South Sea earrings
Earrings in 18k white gold with South Sea pearls and yellow and white diamonds, price on request; DSL Pearl

I would like to think that 2020 could be the beginning of a new age of pearl, revitalizing its demand in a big way. If the 1920s was the decade of long pearl torsades and tassels (everyone in the ’20s was a flapper, in my mind), then this new ’20s can maybe mirror that popularity, in its own way and with a modern vibe. We’re already seeing celebrity pearl engagements—could that be just the beginning of a new era of bridal trends? Some jewelers would literally clutch their pearls at the thought of such a delicate gem being at the center of an everyday ring—rightfully, caution is a necessity—but I find it riveting nonetheless.

In2 Design Alice necklaces
Alice lariats with crystal beads and baroque pearls, $312 each; In2Design
Alessandra Dona Friday Night Mono earrings
Friday Night Mono earrings in 18k yellow and rose gold with black and white South Sea pearls and tiger’s eye, €875–€990 ($975–$1,102); Alessandra Donà
Stuller geometric pearl pendant
Geometric pendant in 14k white gold with freshwater cultured pearl, $1,146; Stuller
K Mita Washi pearl earrings
Washi twisted loop earrings in 18k yellow gold with 6 mm freshwater pearls, $910; K. Mita

So here are some of the latest pearl jewels to take stock of as we ride into this new ’20s age. Some are instant classics, some are a bit more out there, but you can’t ever go wrong with a good piece of pearl.

Top: Knot bow earrings in 18k white gold with 13.5 mm x 11 mm South Sea pearls and 0.9 ct. t.w. diamonds, $4,820; Penny Preville

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JCK Contributing Editor

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