Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Modern Bondage

Bangles and Cuffs are all the rage! Everywhere you turn there is a stack of colorful arm candy to shackle your wrists with. Personally, I love them in theory but when I wear them I inevitably take them off because I work so much on my computer and they get in the way of my feeble typing skills. I've been sporting my collection more of late and here are a few that I am lusting after right now.

This amazing assortment comes from one of my favorite - although way above my budget - vintage jewelry sellers, Carole Tanenbaum. Pieces from her amazing collection of over 10,000 items are being sported by A-list celebrities galore.


Bakelite, a vintage, early plastic product {formed by the reaction under heat and pressure of phenol (a toxic, colorless crystalline solid) and formaldehyde (a simple organic compound), with a wood flour filler, it was the first plastic made from synthetic components - via Wikepedia}. Bakelite jewelry was the rage in the 30's and 40's. It is enjoying a huge resurgence now with an equally large price tag. The classic bracelets shown above are vintage bakelite.



Carole Tanenbaum's book Fabulous Fakes is a treasure trove of vintage costume jewelry. It's a great source for design inspiration and color research.



Jewelry designer Mark Davis is working his magic with vintage bakelite bracelets. He embellishes them with semi-precious jewels and sells them for an astronomical ticket price at Barney's New York. They range from $2900 - $8900! That's some very expensive costume jewelry.





Lee Angel is the innovator behind this line of enameled geometric bangles in great color combinations sure to set off any outfit. Available at Neiman Marcus they are very affordable between $80 - $200! Pretty reasonable for NM!






Just as colorful and much more affordable is the new enameled collection from J. Crew. When did they get so hip? I love the one in the center. It will be mine - oh yes - it will be mine! And with a price tag under $200 it might just happen.


Banana Republic's take on brights is another enameled collection with vibrant colors and geometric lines. They have a classic and timeless look.




R.J. Graziano is the designer of this bright gold and black crystal cuff.





For the more subdued in color but equal in impact these gorgeous cuffs will fit the bill. The gold piece is stunning and the Kenneth Jay Lane Stone Cuff would be great with an evening gown or jeans and a T-shirt.





Sure to stand the test of time is this John Hardy, Jaisalmer cuff. It has a great shape with the sides flaring up above the center.





The new, very vocal version of the bangle by designer Jessica Kagan consists of pre-ban ivory bracelets hand engraved with witty sayings and quotes. She now offers a plastic version to bring the price down to you and me dollars.. Recently she was very outspoken when Chanel allegedly ripped her design off on the runway. Her response was to produce a bracelet engraved in bold letters with the statement " Ripped off by Chanel" . I guess that says it all! I got the "Don't You Know Who I Am?" bracelet from my husband for Christmas. Yes, I'm a lucky girl!



Well my friends, hurry up and get yourself over to Grandma's house and search through the attic for her old bakelite jewelry. You can make some serious bank selling it on on Ebay.

10 comments:

Bayou Contessa said...

Jackie,
This is a 'gem' of a post. I want that John Hardy cuff! Check out my post on Mardi Gras crowns, I think you'll like it. And I'll be doing a few more jewel posts this Mardi Gras season. Great Post!
Julie

Brilliant Asylum said...

Seriously--WHEN did J. Crew start looking like Hermes? I was supposed to curb my shopping after New Years, but you are making it hard!

All Things Bright and Beautiful... said...

Dear Jackie - I swear you are a woman after my own heart - I'm looking at this post an the one next and I'm just going YUM YUM YUM!!!

I love daybeds too - you have some GREAT pics there!!

:-)

Take care and have a great weekend! :-)

Jennifer R. said...

love the bangles from LEE angel, the geometric shapes are unique and i love that the best.

Jen Ramos
'100% Recycled DESIGNER Cards'
www.madebygirl.com

Patricia Gray said...

I love all these bangles, but alas I am like you...they seem to get in the way of my laptop and are always clanging on my desk which has a glass top. But I love them anyways. You have shown some beautiful pieces.

rochambeau said...

Beautiful collection!! Like the cuffs!!

NIKA STEWART said...

I'm drooling! But like you, I tend to buy things that look amazing, and then sit in my closet because they are just too impractical and uncomfortable for everyday living (you should see my big closet of incredible shoes that are hardly touched!). Where is the happy medium between fabulous fashion and cozy comfort??

Mélanie said...

I love these bangles . i collect them but almost never wear them !!!

Anonymous said...

I think it should be pointed out that Mark Davis uses real gemstones, diamonds and 18kt gold and platinum in his pieces. That hardly makes them costume. I wish that they were so that I could afford them!!! I was just in NYC and went to Barneys. They are incredible in person (actually behind glass!). You must go and look. Even if, like me, you can't afford. Don't let the sales ladies scare you off! They are like works of art!

Shauna Killroy (a.k.a. "Lucky Red") said...

Great News! I found Lee Angel bangles that are almost exact copies of Mark Davis pieces for 1/10 the price OR LESS! Intermix had them and I also got some at Neiman Marcus Last Call. I don't actually have any of the real ones but the Lee Angel ones are good enough that I don't need Mark Davis! Of course if someone is feeling generous I am happy to accept any gifts.