Handbags & Fashion

Chanel Jewelry: Add Timeless Elegance to Any Look

By Erica Kagan
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Chanel Jewelry

Chanel Fashion Jewelry & Coco Chanel

Chanel Jewelry has become synonymous with luxury, sophistication, and timeless elegance. As a pioneer in the world of Chanel Fashion Jewelry, Coco Chanel revolutionized the way we accessorize by introducing high-quality, stylish Chanel fashion jewelry pieces that could elevate any outfit. From the iconic Chanel Earrings to the statement-making Chanel Brooch, every piece from every collection is designed to complement your personal style and add a touch of glamour to your ensemble.

While mixing high end items with lower priced brands is common practice today, when Coco Chanel first introduced Chanel costume jewelry it was considered both radical and innovative. Chanel “Costume jewellery isn’t made to provoke desire, just astonishment at most. It must remain an ornament and an amusement,” remarked Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel. Flashing back to the 1920s, Gabrielle Chanel first collaborated with expert costume jewelers to bring her unconventional design ideas to life. Until Coco Chanel leaned into the untapped potential of Chanel fashion jewelry, costume accessories were considered a faux pas, perceived as being only for women who couldn’t afford the real thing. Unfazed by the status quo, Coco Chanel embraced her radical design ideas, discovering a provocative delight in mixing precious materials with faux ones. A departure from the understated elegance of Chanel ready-to-wear, Coco Chanel championed unabashed opulence with her Chanel costume jewelry designs. From piling on necklaces and sautoirs made of faux pearls to layering an unprecedented number of brooches and cuff bracelets, Coco Chanel awed the fashion world with her expressive and playful design combinations. Emphasizing the ‘costume’ in Chanel costume jewelry, each piece Coco designed was the signature finishing touch, or perfect complement, to an already glamorous outfit.

Chanel CC Earrings

Discover the World of Chanel Earrings

Chanel Earrings are an essential part of any collector's jewelry collection. These exquisite pieces come in a variety of styles, from classic CC studs to bold, oversized drop earrings with statement Chanel motifs. With their unmatched craftsmanship and attention to detail, Chanel Earrings add a touch of sophistication to any look, making them the perfect accessory for every occasion. From Baroque inspired nest clip-ons to the Pearl CC Drop design, Chanel earrings are coveted by the most dedicated vintage hunters. Often accompanied by a matching ring or cuff bracelet, Chanel earrings are the ideal finishing touch to any outfit. Though Chanel earrings started to become more of a focus of Chanel costume jewelry collections in the 1990s, interestingly, it wasn’t until the 2000s that the brand introduced pierced earring designs. As such, most vintage Chanel earrings are a variation of the clip-on. Regardless of era, Chanel costume jewelry, including iconic oversized statement earrings, is recognized for the visual interest created by their contrast and excess.

Chanel Cross Necklace

Chanel Jewelry - Maltese Cross

Despite her iconically individual spirit, Coco Chanel was an avid collaborator, constantly seeking inspiration from the world around her. Coco’s jewelry designs were directly influenced by her circle of chic, bohemian friends, eager to sport a profusion of stones, faux pearls and precious metals all at once. Beyond using friends as her muses, Coco Chanel sought out unique collaborators to maximize the impact and allure of her jewelry creations. From 1933 onwards, Chanel had a close yet largely undocumented friendship with Duke Fulco di Verdura. A Sicilian aristocrat and jet-setting playboy, Verdura was an unlikely partner for self-made businesswoman, Coco Chanel. On a personal level, Verdura helped Coco shape her own abundant collection of jewels. Much of Coco’s collection was the accumulation of gifts from her various lovers, including Russian Grand Duke Dimitri and the Duke of Westminster. According to fashion lore, the Duke of Westminster would gift a jewel and bouquet of flowers to Coco Chanel each week. Evidently, out of the unexpected came revolution, as Verdura would help shape the future of Chanel jewelry. With a shared passion for Baroque and organic, unbridled shapes, Verdura and Chanel disregarded the classic criteria of sophisticated taste. The most distinctive design to emerge from this collaboration was the iconic Maltese cross, a motif largely influenced by Verdura’s Mediterranean culture. Immediately purchased by fashion icon and editor Diana Vreeland, the Chanel Maltese cross brooches would remain among the most sought-after jewelry designs ever crafted. Soon after, French jewelry designer Suzanne Gripoix created an irregular glass pearl for the House of Chanel, dubbed Gripoix Glass. In her designs, Gripoix captured the imperfect spirituality of Coco’s childhood in the convent, notably arranging the Maltese cross like a church’s stained-glass windows. In 1954, goldsmith Robert Goossens would further reinterpret Chanel’s signature crosses as the chief designer of Chanel jewelry, emulating the designs in rock crystals. By combining her philosophy of Modernism with symbols of antiquity, Coco Chanel embraced the best of both worlds in her timeless jewelry designs and inspired collaborations.

Vintage Chanel Brooch

Elevate Your Style with a Chanel Brooch

The Chanel Brooch is a true icon of Chanel Fashion Jewelry, showcasing the brand's dedication to innovative design and exceptional quality. Whether you're pinning it to the lapel of your favorite tweed jacket or accenting your chic 2.55 Flap Bag, a Chanel Brooch can transform your outfit, adding a tasteful touch of luxury and style. From tweed camellias and enamel CCs to the signature Maltese Cross, the brooch – in all its variations – is a bonafide icon of Chanel jewelry. Whether pinned to the lapel of a tweed jacket or on your 2.55 Flap Bag, the Chanel brooch is an accessory essential, tastefully elevating a fashionable ensemble. Cleverly designed by Coco herself, a perfectly placed Chanel brooch can alter the silhouette and contours of any dress. Historically speaking, the most iconic sautoirs, earrings and camellia brooches first emerged in 1954, when Coco Chanel returned to Paris and opened a store on Rue Cambon. While this location was best known for showcasing haute couture collections, each garment featured costume bijouterie. Nearly eight decades later, the Chanel brooch remains a timeless piece that belongs in every woman’s jewelry collection.

Chanel Cuff

Adorn Your Wrist with a Chanel Bracelet

From the iconic Chanel Maltese Cross cuff to delicate, minimalist designs, Chanel Bracelets are the epitome of style and sophistication. These timeless pieces can be worn alone or stacked for a bold statement, making them a versatile addition to any jewelry collection. As touched on above, Fulco di Verdura's impact on Chanel jewelry design was incredibly unique. Most notable, it was Verdura who designed the first silver cuff bracelet for Chanel, decorated with a Maltese cross made of multi-colored, semi-precious stones, and mounted on white enamel. A thoughtful reimagination of classic garments, this Chanel bracelet was designed to replace a traditional shirt cuff. Rich in history and aesthetically captivating, the Chanel Maltese Cross cuffs are among the most sought after pieces on the resale market. Coco Chanel personally adored these bracelets and would wear them constantly, notably stacking multiple mismatched cuffs on her wrists. Of all the Chanel bracelets ever crafted, the cuff is an undeniable icon that continues to be modernized and reinterpreted.

Chanel Necklace

Complete Your Look with a Chanel Necklace

No Chanel Costume Jewelry collection is complete without a stunning Chanel Necklace. These exquisite pieces are available in a range of styles, from opulent layers of pearl ropes to intricate, beaded creations. With limitless styling possibilities, a Chanel Necklace can be the perfect finishing touch to any outfit, seamlessly blending elegance and modernity. There is no piece of jewelry more directly tied to the image of Coco Chanel than the opulent layering of pearl ropes. The perfect accent to her minimalist style, Coco always sported pearls, even for the most casual of occasions. Indeed, it was the idea to design faux pearls that first inspired the launch of a Chanel costume jewelry line. As time revealed, the pearl Chanel necklace would prove to be as iconic as the little black dress. Yet, it was master craftsman Robert Goossens who truly diversified the design of the Chanel necklace. By the 1960s, Goossens and Chanel were designing necklaces with beads, pearls and flowers. Highly sought after by the modern day it-girls, a Chanel necklace has limitless styling possibilities. Vintage Chanel necklaces are highly sought after by collectors.

Explore the World of Chanel Fashion Jewelry

Chanel Costume Jewelry continues to captivate the fashion world with its innovative designs and impeccable craftsmanship. From the classic Chanel Necklace to the statement-making Chanel Earrings, every piece in the collection is a testament to Coco Chanel's vision and her enduring influence on the world of fashion. Discover the unparalleled elegance and sophistication of Chanel Fashion Jewelry, and elevate your style with these iconic, timeless accessories.

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