In a year when we’ve been restricted to communicating virtually, expressing our style solely from the waist up, it’s no surprise that statement earrings are bigger – both physically and metaphorically – than ever.
The trend takes influence from the catwalks. At Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week in January this year, Armani Privé matched richly embroidered gowns with collarbone-grazing earrings, while models at Fendi wore abstract chandelier earrings designed by Delfina Delettrez that descended all the way to the chest.
The trend assumes exquisitely precious form in the collections of jewellery connoisseurs, with natural diamonds the obvious choice to inject a dose of high glamour to a look.
“Statement diamond earrings played a huge part in our daily wardrobes over the past year, giving our more laid-back working-from-home wardrobes an instant update when the occasion calls,” says London-based diamond jewellery designer Annoushka Ducas, whose new drop earrings feature diamond daisies that graduate in size as they descend towards the collarbones.
“Now that we can think about dressing for events and parties again, shoulder-dusting earrings are a strong choice – as Beyoncé perfectly illustrated at this year’s Grammys. Big earrings, especially those embellished with natural diamonds, make a statement as well as elongating your neck and drawing the eye to your décolletage.”
There is something immediately transformative about putting on a pair of statement earrings; like slipping on a pair of high heels or an evening gown. Although you can’t see them yourself, the feeling of wearing a pair of shoulder-dusting earrings alters your posture, making you stand a little straighter and taller, and appear more graceful as a result.
Dazzling diamond earrings have long been a favourite of clients of David Morris, the international jewellery house headquartered on London’s Bond Street. “The enduring popularity of shoulder-grazing earrings lies in a mix of drama and wearability,” says CEO and Creative Director Jeremy Morris. “They instantly elevate any look. We’re seeing younger clients style them in edgier ways, and even wearing them as singles. The beauty of choosing such a bold style is that they make an incredible statement alone – you can throw them on and not have to think about any other jewellery.”
The house’s Phoenix earrings feature clusters of pear-cut white diamonds that taper elegantly into long diamond drops: an opulent yet sophisticated take on the trend, perfectly suited for strapless gowns and off-the-shoulder cocktail dresses. As Jeremy Morris says: “they completely steal the show.”
Graff recognises the power of natural diamonds to light up a woman’s face and flatter her complexion – no filter needed.
Its latest high jewellery collection, Tribal, features several pairs of collarbone-grazing diamond earrings, with sculptural abstract ovals crafted using the minimal amount of metal possible to allow the brilliance of the diamonds to shine through.
The Whisper in the Wind earrings by Her Story evoke the delicacy and sensuality of Chantilly lace, with custom-cut tulip-shaped natural diamonds accentuated by shimmering rose-cut stones: a beautiful blend of symmetry and femininity. The diamonds are set en tremblant to quiver gently as the wearer moves.
Tasselled earrings also offer a mesmerising sense of movement, shimmying and dancing along with the woman who wears them, making them an obvious choice for parties and special occasions.
Jaipur Gems offers a variety of shoulder-grazing tasselled styles that swing and sway like brilliant, sparkling waterfalls.
Narayan Jewellers by Ketan and Jatin Chokshicontrasts tassels of white diamonds with rich blue aquamarines, and Tasaki wraps ropes of real diamonds in various sizes around lustrous South Sea pearls.
Diamond jewellery designer Neha Lulla punctuates strands of brilliant-cut diamonds with pear-cut stones, dangling gracefully from crescent moon-shaped curves that frame the face beautifully, and a collaboration between Anmol Jewellers and fashion designer Manish Malhotra resulted in a tiered chandelier style of rose-gold tassels embellished with over 10 carats of Forevermark diamonds.
“A pair of shoulder-duster earrings is a stand-alone jewellery piece which can make a bold fashion statement and become the highlight of your look,” says Ishu Datwani, founder of Anmol Jewellers.
“They can instantly elevate your look and add a touch of glamour: whether worn to a wine and cheese gathering, styled with a contemporary cocktail dress, or paired with elegant Indian attire at an extravagant wedding. Styling is very important: my advice would be not to wear any other attention-seeking jewellery, allowing the earrings to stand out.”
Shoulder-dusting earrings also lend themselves to more graphic, geometric designs, tapping into another one of 2021’s major diamond jewellery trends.
The Art Deco diamond earrings by Vummidi Bangaru feature sharp, diamond-set chevrons descending through long, slender drops: understated and supremely chic.
As we make a cautious return to glitz and glamour after so many months of loungewear, we predict that jewellers will find themselves inundated with requests for evermore elaborate earrings. And it’s a trend that designers themselves are all too happy to embrace – after all, these jewels are made to be noticed.