Pearls have been around for as long as anyone can remember and were the first real valuable gem stone that women Ooooh’ed and Aaaah’ed over thousands of years ago. In fact, in Ancient Rome only women above a certain rank were allowed to wear pearls. It’s not a surprise then that one of the hallmarks of what is traditionally considered “elegant” and “sophisticated” style has definitely got to be the strand of pearls that goes around the neck. It’s been a staple of fashionable women for decades, such as Jackie, Audrey, Coco and Grace.
Grace wasn’t the only Royal who loved pearls- the admiration was mutual across the pond in Britain and while favoured by the older Royals (and previously by Diana, Princess of Wales), the strand of pearls which once defined classic elegant style has fallen out of style with the younger, hipper Royal crowd- think Duchess Kate. Thinking my Google search skills were just lacking, I also discovered I couldn’t find any modern day princess wearing a strand of pearls. Hmmm….
I thought that my pearl necklace collection was going to be going extinct until I found a new role model for wearing pearl necklaces… What I somewhat consider to be the American equivalent of royalty, the First Lady Michelle Obama. It’s pretty much become her jewllery statement and she pairs it with, as you can see below, countless colors, styles and hairdos. There are even full web galleries about her pearl wearing if you’d like to look at more pictures. She’s a great fashion icon for American girls as she’s stylish, trendy, bold (I’d never have the guts to leave the house in a mint green skirt and sequinned pale pink blouse) but also very sophisticated and refined.
I am fortunate enough to own 4 strands of pearls: I have a white strand which were a gift from my sister at her wedding, a pink strand I bought myself in Hong Kong, a grey strand my parents bought me in Vietnam and a final white set which were given to me by my grandma as an heirloom. I’ve yet to find a way to wear any of them which is really a shame. I find that when I go to put them on with an outfit, I think they make me look too matronly. Michelle seems to be able to pull them off though and I realized that what I’m missing is also something I can stand to learn- wearing them with confidence.
Because confidence can make any fashion statement work.