Designer Jessica McCormack has that enviable effortless style which appears as though she woke up looking put together. Well, she sort of did. The London-based New Zealand native’s uniform is comfortable worn denim, diamond jewels and a white T-shirt. And some jewelry pieces, she says, never come off.
Don’t be fooled by her easygoing style and everyday diamond jewelry. McCormack works exclusively with top-quality vintage and new natural diamond jewelry, including plenty of sizable rocks that add a hefty dose of glamour to even the most mundane looks. McCormack’s signature pieces—oval-shaped diamonds floating on a curvaceous gold ring or bracelet and bezel-set pear-shaped diamonds hanging from everyday gold ball chains—reflect her personal sensibility.
The mother of three is constantly on the go and prefers a no-fuss style that works with her lifestyle. But her love of diamonds inspires her to create “relevant and wearable pieces for today” and heirlooms for the next generation. She works closely with clients who come to her for style advice and to redesign their old diamond jewelry in her signature look.
Here, she offers insider tips on what you need to nail the diamonds and denim look.
What’s your go-to denim and diamonds look?
Jessica McCormack: I am all about a pair of jeans, a white tank and some mega diamonds.
I don’t know if it’s the New Zealand in me, but I am drawn to a more relaxed outfit that I can then dress up with diamonds. “I love that high-low thing,” she says.
Is there a brand that reflects your denim style?
JM: I have a partnership with the jeans brand Citizens of Humanity, which perfectly reflects my vibe.
How do diamonds elevate your everyday look?
JM: Diamonds add glamour, but—especially when paired with a look that’s relaxed—it’s a glamour that feels cool rather than OTT [over the top].
My designs don’t try too hard. They brighten the face; they add that extra something—and they elevate your look rather than changing it entirely.
What makes your diamond jewelry easy to wear with casual clothing?
JM: Designing diamonds that are easy to wear is at the heart of what I do. I call them Day Diamonds. And there are specific things that make them so. For instance, we use a lot of blackened gold in our settings which makes the diamond feel more casual. And our button back setting gets the most out of a stone, but it also feels soft against the skin.
What diamond jewelry works best with today’s more casual style?
JM: Buy pieces you love and that you know you’re going to wear.
For example, my Gypset earrings are perfect because once they’re in your ear I promise they will remain in! My clients sleep in them, swim in them, work out in them. It’s jewelry you don’t need to think about.
Jewelry that you can stack is key because you can build a look up that way. My necklaces work really well together or hang perfectly on their own. Depending on what I’m wearing I’m able to get dressed in the morning, and towards the end of the day add a necklace to my stack to take that same look out for dinner.
Best advice for clients who want to look chic in diamonds and denim?
JM: Wear what makes you feel relaxed. Just like you want to choose a pair of jeans that look good but also feel good, treat jewelry the same way.
Are more women redesigning their old diamond jewelry?
JM: This is something we’ve done for clients since the inception of my brand. But we’ve definitely seen an increase in it in the past couple of years. With more people spending more time in the home, I think they had an opportunity to really look at their wardrobes and their jewelry boxes and re-evaluate the things they already own.
Styling tips on redesigning?
JM: It’s about investing in a piece of jewelry that you’re really going to wear. For instance, what’s so beautiful about inherited jewelry is that it holds emotion and holds onto memories in such a way that it feels almost reductive to hide those pieces away. Think about creating something out of them that you can see yourself wearing, and your remodeled jewelry will be the most special piece you own.
Do you have diamond pieces that you live in?
JM: Yes! Although I fall in love with everything that comes out of my workshop, so I definitely switch my jewelry look up a lot. There are some pieces that rarely leave my body though, including my 3mm gold bands stacked on my thumb, a rose gold Ball n Chain necklace and Gypset earrings.