Winters Past

20th Century Fashion from Deco to Disco

Vintage Pearls, Modern Style

Do you remember when Sharon Stone wore a white men’s button down Gap  shirt with a long evening skirt to the Oscars? If this doesn’t ring a bell, go ahead and Google it.

OK, didn’t that look fresh and new? The key to Stone’s look was the unexpected juxtaposition. Pairing a classic- in this case, a dress shirt-with a luxe purple satin skirt startled the eye just a bit and looked innovative and stylish.

Now, pearls. They can have a bit of a Mamie Eisenhower feel to them, which is a way of saying old school and not particularly stylish. But right now, pearls are looking fresh and cool, like Sharon Stone’s white shirt.

These are frankly fake costume jewelry pearl necklaces worn in a  modern way.

Here is my list showing how to wear pearls in a way that is current and not mumsy. I’ve written it in a retro fifties fashion magazine do-and-don’t style:

  • Don’t go all matchy matchy. Pairing your necklace with more pearls (like with pearl ear rings or a bracelet) is like kryptonite to the updated look we’re going for here.
  • Do wear it like you mean it. So, we’re not looking at a dainty single strand. Choose a bold, standout piece; maybe one that is oversized or super long.
  • Do choose interesting pearls. Are they multi strands, mixed with other beads or have some cool hardware mixed in? Good!
  • Do keep everything else modern-your hair (unfussy), your outfit (modern), and your makeup (minimal). Note the tee, sweat shirt, denim, cardigan and trench coat below. Bold pearls would also go really well with a black leather jacket.
  • Don’t be afraid to mix pearls with metal. Bold gold or silver chains go nicely with pearls.
  • Don’t pair them with standard office suits. Go for the unexpected combination-either very casual or very dressy but not in the middle.

Here is some visual inspiration:

a modern way to wear vintage pearls

a modern way to wear vintage pearls

a modern way to wear vintage pearls

And did I mention that the subtle glow of pearls is very flattering to wear?

Here are a few vintage pearl necklaces I have in the shop right now that fit the bill nicely:

vintage pearl necklaces at Winters Past

vintage pearl necklaces at Winters Past

Author: Winters Past

I am a vintage clothing shop owner living and working in rural north Florida. I believe in adding a little vinegar and molasses to my greens, having my coffee outside whenever possible, and mixing something vintage into every room and every outfit.

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