Let your inner seductress out by way of sexy serpent jewels that slither around the body’s curves, while standing for strength and new beginnings.
For centuries, the serpent has stood for so many things—love, seduction and beauty included.
This year, it stylishly slithers back to necks and wrists, symbolizing a sexy departure from the sweatpant culture we’ve grown used to given recent circumstances.
NecklaceJacob & Co
Ear CuffLogan Hollowell
NecklaceMagerit at Underwood's
Women want to be sexy again, after living in casual-land for so long during the last year, and gold snake jewelry is the embodiment of that.
JENNIFER MCCURRY, Jewelry Specialist
By Marion Fasel
Snake jewels have slithered back into the forefront of style for any number of great reasons—of course, topping the list, is their seductive good looks. “Women want to be sexy again, after living in casual-land for so long during the last year, and gold snake jewelry is the embodiment of that,” explains Jennifer McCurry from Marissa Collections.
Snakes have long played the role of jewelry seductress. During the classical era in Greece women wore alluring gold snake armbands and rings. Diamonds began infusing serpent jewels with sparkle during the 19th century. Several chic royals including France’s Empress Eugénie and Britain’s Queen Alexandra flaunted diamond studded gold snake bracelets. In the 20th century, Elizabeth Taylor, María Felix and Catherine Deneuve were among the stylish movie stars who sported snake jewelry.
Back in the glory days of magazines, legendary Vogue Editor-in-Chief Diana Vreeland made sure snake jewels appeared all over the pages of her publication. In a 1968 editorial staff memo she said: “Don’t forget the Serpent. The serpent should be on every finger and all wrists and all everywhere. The serpent is the motif of the hours in jewelry. We cannot see enough of them.”
Today movie stars are once again making diamond snakes part of their red carpet looks. There is rarely a big occasion where a Bulgari Serpenti necklace doesn’t make at least one appearance. Stars who have worn the snake style just this year start with model Anna Cleveland and go right on through the alphabet to Zendaya.
Zendaya in Bulgari
“For Bulgari, the Serpenti Collection manifests one of the most celebrated icons of the brand’s creativity,” explained Nicola Bulgari in the book Bulgari: Serpenti Collection written by yours truly. He went on to add, “It is also vivid proof of our ability to take inspiration from the past while introducing distinctive and striking reinterpretations.”
One reason for the snake’s staying power with iconoclastic houses like Bulgari is their linear form. It is what makes snakes so sexy in jewelry. Designers often wrap the bodies of gold and diamond snakes around wrists, necks and fingers. The meandering line gives jewels the great quality of movement. There is also a bit of playful peek-a-boo with skin exposed underneath parts of the jewel.
Another big reason snakes have been almost constantly popular is because they symbolize so many good things. During the classical era snakes were linked to the goddess of love, Aphrodite. Her bracelet represented alluring beauty. The power and wisdom of snakes was part of the lore of Alexander the Great and the Roman emperor, Augustus. Both leaders proclaimed they were sired by divine serpents. When Prince Albert presented a gold snake engagement ring to Britain’s young Queen Victoria, it sent a message to the world the creature was a symbol of everlasting love.
Today another meaning is regularly applied to snake jewels. “Snakes represent strength since their bodies are like one big muscle. They also symbolize new beginnings because they shed their skin,” says Jennifer McCurry. “New beginnings and strength are ideas women hold especially dear right now.”