Are you a fan of Victorian jewellery? It’s undeniably beautiful, crafted with expertise, and totally unique among its modern-day counterparts, but Victorian jewellery is difficult to style for the modern age.
With this guide, Victorian jewellery can become a part of your wardrobe in 5 easy ways.
1. One Colour Win
You can’t lose if you adopt the method of creating an outfit entirely out of shades of the same colour. Wearing the same colour – or different shades of the same colour – all over might seem like a case of ‘too much’, but if you pair several tones from the same colour family together, you can accessorise with items from of the same colours, and create a very multi-dimensional outfit. Matching jewellery stones that are in the same colour family as your outfit is a great way to incorporate Victorian jewellery into your wardrobe, and it can work for a vast variety of colours. For example, an outfit incorporating several shades of red – from a boisterous bright red, to a seductive rich-toned dark red, can all be brought together by a beautiful Victorian ruby or garnet.
2. Minimalist Masterpiece
Another way that Victorian jewellery can be your friend is if you really tone things down and keep it simple. Restricting the colour palette of your outfit to one or two shades that contrast with the colour of the jewellery you plan on wearing will create an excellent effect, where the eye can’t help but be drawn to the accessories. Simple shades like blacks, greys, and whites are perfect for creating that stark contrast with items of jewellery that almost reach out and grab you, giving them the perfect background upon which to stand out. This method is the most effective if the jewellery you are hoping to display is especially bright and colourful, perhaps featuring several different stones, but it is also excellent if your piece is plainer but big enough that it is a statement in itself.
3. Vintage Victory
Mixing eras together might sound like a mess of aesthetics, but believe me; it can create a beautiful, cohesive outfit when done right. For this, you’ll want to use something that dates back to the earlier half of the twentieth century. Anything from the fifties and earlier can be paired together with Victorian touches in the form of jewellery and come together as an overall ‘aged’ look. Anything from a poodle skirt to a flapper dress will become an elevated, more complete outfit when worn in harmony with a statement Victorian ring or necklace, and instant sophistication will be achieved. Brooches are another excellent jewellery item to incorporate to succeed here, as they have been worn consistently throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and so won’t look out of place as part of a vintage outfit.
4. Stacking Success
This method is really one for the bold and daring – as well as avid collectors of Victorian jewellery. Since wearing Victorian jewellery in the 21st century is the goal here, the basis of this method is wearing as much Victorian jewellery as is physically possible. For this to work you need to ensure your outfit is very plain; the ideal moment for a little black dress. Next, wear every Victorian ring, bracelet, and necklace you can find. Once again, another method that sounds like madness on paper [or screen], but in reality it creates a stunning visual where your base outfit sets off the beauty of your jewellery. Although it may be tempting, leave brooches out of this method, as a cluster of brooches all on one outfit tends to be more overwhelming than dazzling.
5. Modern Magnum Opus
This final methodology is about contrast; mixing the modern and the matured to create a wonderful outfit that isn’t as ‘out there’ as the stacking method, for those who prefer a more refined style. The best way to achieve this is to wear an incredibly modern outfit. Architectural, structured clothes, with sharp, clean lines will be needed to pull of this look. Paired with cutting edge modern clothes, Victorian jewellery will stand out with its scrolling patterns, and softer edges. The best pieces to look out for if you’re looking to accomplish this kind of outfit are items with intricate detailing, such as unique patterns or gemstone clusters. Earrings, bracelets, and rings are best for this, as they don’t actually cover any of the base outfit, allowing both elements to complement and contrast.
Wearing Victorian jewellery in the 21st century without looking like an extra from Ripper Street might seem like a challenge at times, but now you know that it is doable. Using these simple methods, you are free to go forth and prosper in your newfound wisdom – bring some antique beauty to your modern-day glamour.
Bethany Massey – Digital Assistant (Content Creator)
Having graduated university with a BA in English Literature and an MA in Creative Writing Bethany then joined the AC Silver team as a content creator. Bethany spends her days writing content for the AC Silver blog and other luxury goods/antique blogs.