The 2012 Golden Globes: The Best Jewels Reflect a Team Effort

Planning for a red carpet appearance requires a team effort. There’s the matter of the dress, shoes and bag, makeup and hair, and of course, jewelry.  At every awards show, it appears that a few of the attendees (often those who are novices to the process), never quite get to the consideration of that last perfect finishing touch, the jewels.

We witnessed this happening again at the 2012 Golden Globes, when, for instance, young actress Rooney Mara, who tends toward an edgy style, apparently wore no jewelry. Veteran actress Tilda Swinton, wearing spectacular three-dimensional floral cuff bracelets from Fred Leighton, demonstrates how edgy style can beautifully incorporate jewels into the mix.

Young actress Shailene Woodley opted for tiny drop earrings far too insignificant for her lovely Marchesa gown, especially when the neckline provided delicate details that could have inspired more interesting earrings. Yet there are times when small earrings provide just the right touch. For example, Piper Perabo wore a gown of neutral light taupe from Theory with a huge skirt and narrow bodice, along with an extremely elaborate hairdo. Stud earrings and a wide diamond bracelet provided just the right touch of dazzle. For Angelina Jolie, simple but enormous diamonds at her ears could not have been improved upon with her spectacular red-accented champagne-color satin gown from Atelier Versace.  

Happily, there were an abundance of beautiful jewels to be seen. Noteworthy earrings were the norm, and there were plenty of diamond bracelets and all manner of cocktail rings sparkling on wrists and hands. Necklaces were few and far between, although Heidi Klum in Lorraine Schwartz’s turquoise confection and Frieda Pinto in a bib necklace of sparkling yellow diamonds, were exceptions. Both choices were worn with very basic dresses, which provided a blank slate for their chosen adornments.

The freshest looks in jewels go beyond the expected. Actress Emma Stone wore a two-tone Lanvin gown finished with a belt with a huge jewel-encrusted eagle front and center. The wings of the eagle played off the shoulder design of the dress and emphasized its deep vee neckline.

The most spectacular use of jewels was seen on Charlize Theron, who wore a couture Dior gown of petal pink with a low vee neck and an elaborate skirt with an enormous tiered bow at the waist. Theron accented her gown with an enormous diamond brooch or set of brooches at her waist, and a 1920s diamond headband in her hair. When interviewed on the red carpet, she explained that her jewelry was vintage Cartier that had been flown in from the Cartier museum in Geneva. Consider the coordination and planning required to create this dazzling effect.

The team effort that went into Theron’s exquisite look went further: InStyle magazine posted online comments from Theron’s hairstylist Enzo Angileri, who stated, “Because the jewelry was so special, the hair had to be understated.”

The loveliest red carpet looks are those in which jewelry is more than an afterthought.