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Do You Know About 'Personal Jewelry?'

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For the past few years, you couldn't read a fashion magazine without seeing styling advice that included, "and top it off with a piece of statement jewelry!" Bib necklaces, mixed-media earrings, cocktail rings, and arm parties were an essential part of the early-2010s outfit, and the variety of statements each made all seemed to be variations of "LOOK! ME! OVER HERE!"

These days, the statement is less a shout and more a purr. Jewelry trends have shifted to be smaller, more subtle, and more permanent, too. Instead of baubles you switch out every day to match your mood and outfit, the most exciting jewelry coming out these days are pieces that you put on once and never take off. They're pieces you don't notice on other people until you're having a conversation with them — chain necklaces, simple rings, and pretty hoops that become as much a part of your body as a tattoo. It's personal jewelry — not statement jewelry — and it's a refreshing new normal.

Gossamer-thin layered chains are replacing a million rings or stacked friendship bracelets as the jewelry hoarder's look du jour. Keep it all in the same metal family or mix it up for a magpie effect.

One of the first rules of statement jewelry is to pare it back — wearing big earrings, necklaces, and rings is too much of a look. Ironically, that minimal approach doesn't apply when you're working with minimalist jewelry. Don't be afraid of going for broke and wearing it all.

The best kinds of jewelry are the ones with personal stories. Whether it's the mix of gemstones, a bracelet you got during a game-changer trip, or a ring that reminds you of a particular feeling, these items are little amulets you carry with you at all times.

The midi-ring was perhaps the first big trend to come out of this genre of jewelry. While it was cool to aggressively stack tiny gold rings on all your fingers, these days, a curated approach seems fresher. Choose two or three rings to wear on your second knuckle — and that's it! Skip the traditional ring for a deliberately forward-thinking look.

If you thought signet rings only belonged on the pinky fingers of flashy (male!) wheelers and dealers, it might be time to reconsider. Whether etched or left plain, a simple gold or silver signet looks striking in an understated way (especially if you leave the pinstriped suit and cigar at home).

Even if you've worn hoops all your life, there are so many beautiful, simple versions out now that there's something new for you to try out. Twisted, warped hoops keep things surreal, while a bouquet of sparkles makes a basic hoop a little more flashy.

By CONNIE WANG

 

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