How to Wear Fine Jewelry

by Nancy Plante May 08, 2020

How to Wear Fine Jewelry

Whatever look you choose, a beautiful piece of jewelry is something that can complete your look and make you stand out. We have some advice that we think will help you learn how to wear fine jewelry with ease.

Tahitian pearls have an iridescent surface that reflects color, like the pink of this jacket.

Tahitian pearls have an iridescent surface that reflects color, like the pink of this jacket.

What Jewelry to Choose Based on your Outfit

Depending on the outfit you select and the look you are trying to achieve, there are a variety of questions you can ask yourself—this will help you you select the appropriate jewelry:

Will you be wearing a statement piece?

You should select only one statement piece to complement your outfit. A few examples might be:

  • A chunky necklace 
  • Earrings
  • A stack of bracelets—just one big piece or a stack 

Any other accompanying jewelry should be less dramatic.


Experiment with texture and pattern to find new looks!

What kind of fabrics are you wearing?

  • Light, sheer fabrics call for delicate jewelry and thin chains.
  • Chunky, heavier necklaces and bracelets go with bulky sweaters and thicker fabrics.

What style of neckline are you wearing?

This will determine:

  • If you want a necklace that rests on your skin, inside the collar, or the neckline. 
  • If the necklace should be longer and rest on the fabric of your top.

What colors are you wearing?

You don’t have to wear a gem that is the same color as your outfit. Choose colors that will make your outfit “pop.” Complementary colors (opposites) are fun to pair together. For example, you could pair a hot pink tourmaline pendant with a teal jacket or emerald earrings with a pink dress. Neutral-color clothing looks great with blue jewelry. You could pair beige linen with lapis lazuli jewelry or fabrics with brown tones paired with London blue topaz earrings.

<p style="text-align: center;"><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">Round beads or pearls look great with polka dots! The earrings keep the pearl theme without being too "matchy."</span></em></p> <h2></h2>

Round beads or pearls look great with polka dots! The earrings keep the pearl theme without being too "matchy."

Does your clothing have a pattern or print?

Have fun with patterns and jewelry—try on lots of options, you might be surprised at what you like.

  • A bold pattern will look best with solid, simple jewelry.
  • A smaller, detailed pattern can sometimes be coordinated with jewelry that has a patterned surface. For example, a paisley turtleneck with hoop earrings that have a curlique etched along the curve makes a stunning combination.

What metals should you choose?

Some people prefer to wear white metals including silver, platinum, and white gold, whereas others prefer yellow gold. This may depend primarily on what flatters their skin tone. Keep in mind that you don’t have to stick with just one metal all of the time. 

  • Rose gold seems to flatter everyone.
  • Try mixing metals. Wedding ring trends include stacking a white gold engagement ring with a yellow gold wedding band, or vice versa.
  • Metal colors can change the look of gemstone jewelry. For example, blue sapphire looks rich in yellow gold, while it takes on a cool look when set in white gold.

Your style can change over time as well. Some women find that as their hair grays, they switch their yellow gold jewelry for white metals. It’s all about what YOU like—wear what you feel looks best on YOU.

How do you combine pieces?

It’s best not to have a “matchy-matchy” look when you are pulling together your outfit. It’s much more visually appealing when you mix and match various pieces of jewelry with your clothing. 

  • If you have sets of jewelry—things such as matching earrings and pendants—mix them up. For example, If you have a set of sapphire studs and a matching pendant, wear the studs with a silver necklace and wear the pendant with diamond studs. You could also simply wear the sapphire earrings and skip the necklace altogether.   
  • If you have a stock pile of chains, trade them between your pendants—this is a fun way to get creative and see what combinations you might come up with.
  • Wear a pendant on a short chain, layered with a longer chain or station necklace.

Recently, a customer came in with a diamond cluster pendant that was set in yellow gold. She came in to get a new chain. We tried a yellow gold chain, which looked pretty, and then we tried a white gold chain—what a fun surprise that was. The white gold picked up the white of the diamonds, making the pendant come alive.

What about rings?

As with other jewelry, keep the proportion of your rings aligned with your outfit. For example, if you were to wear chunky rings, you’d want to pair that with chunky clothes. Here are a few more tips to keep in mind:

  • If you want to show off or highlight your rings, don’t wear one on every finger. Michelle Obama takes off her wedding set to wear a large cocktail ring on her middle finger for a dressy event. 
  • If you’re rocking a stack of bracelets, wear your rings on the other hand. It balances out the look.

When in Doubt

If you’re feeling a little perplexed, don’t fret. We have 10 simple steps you can follow when in doubt. Before you know it, you’ll be a pro at styling your outfits with your jewelry.

  1. Make sure the jewelry matches the occasion.
  2. Busy patterns and simple jewelry go hand-in-hand.
  3. Use statement earrings to highlight the face.
  4. Wear jewelry that compliments your skin tones.
  5. Mix warm toned jewelry with cool colors and vice versa.
  6. Diamonds are a girl’s best friend.
  7. Gold, black, and white are timeless colors that go well together.
  8. Mix and match pieces.
  9. Avoid being matchy-matchy.
  10. Choose a centerpiece.

Don’t forget...

It’s easy to forget when we wear our jewelry every day how dull each piece can become. A good cleaning will bring your jewelry back to life. Even better, occasionally having your gold jewelry polished and your white gold refinished will have amazing results. Your jeweler can offer different options for cleaning, refinishing, and refurbishing to keep your treasured jewelry looking its absolute best—how it’s meant to look. Visit us in store for a cleaning or to pick out your next statement piece. 

Nancy Plante
Nancy Plante


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in Blog

The Making Of A Ring
The Making Of A Ring

by Nancy Plante August 16, 2023

Wax Carving
Wax Carving

by Nancy Plante June 01, 2023

Past And Present
Past And Present

by Nancy Plante March 16, 2023