Statement jewellery has definitely made a comeback. It started with lockdown zoom calls, where jewellery went bigger and bolder so it would be visible on screen. And now has translated to the fashion runways as SS22 saw lots of oversized earrings, colourful chokers and bold cuffs on display.

So, what makes a statement piece of jewellery? There is actually more to it than just a bigger piece and it's all subjective: what one person considers statement is another's minimalist. Looking at current trends, the shift towards striking pieces is evident, but let's look at a few different aspects.

Spectacular Sizes

Large dimensions are an obvious place to start when discussing statement jewellery. Creating a larger aesthetically pleasing piece poses a number of design challenges: proportions, volume and materials must all be used carefully to make a stylish piece.

For example: Manu uses bimetal to create semi-fine statement pieces that are contemporary yet accessible. Simon Harrisson brings the natural world into his costume jewellery, referencing fairy tales and mythology in his bold pieces. Jane Moore injects colour into her designs through use of vitreous enamels. Shimell and Madden challenge physics with their spectacular compositions, for example their helix ring.

Manu oxidised geometric bracelet Simon Harrison dionysus bear bracelet jane moore sterling silver enamel pale blue oval boatman necklace designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland shimmell and madden emerald digamma ring diamond yellow gold designyard contemporary gallery dublin ireland paris rome hong kong milan venice manhattan the hamptons monaco uae dubai shanghai beijing london belfast

Generous Gemstones

Sometimes it is the gem at the heart of the design that creates the statement. A significantly sized sapphire, ruby, emerald or diamond is always going to grab attention, or better yet a breath-taking gem combination.

There is a particular design challenge in taking a large gem yet creating an elegant and refined jewel. Structural aspects, scale and volume are important considerations.

Andrew Geoghegan Paraiba Chapiteau ring is a fine example, but Josephine Bergsoe, Shimell and Madden, and Ronan Campbell show similar sensibilities and skills. Or look at Inga Reed and Nicole van der Wolf for spectacular gem-centered neckpieces.

andrew geoghegan 18k white gold chapiteau de paraiba diamond cocktail ring designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland

ronan campbell colombian emerald diamond ring bespoke designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland

inga reed aquamarine sterling silver 22k yellow gold necklace designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland

Spectacular Surfaces

A sparkling surface of pavé set gems or expanses of textured metals allow for generous creativity. Cardillac's forged Iris ring or revolve earrings create a luxurious statement in gold. Sarah Herriot takes us to new heights with loops of gleaming gold in her Acrobat series. Other prime examples are Angela Hubel's Domino ring and H&D's Discus necklace - with 922 diamonds set on a platinum disc. What makes these designs truly statement is their ability to capture and reflect the light more broadly than a single line or gemstone.

cardillac 14k yellow gold revolve earrings designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland handmade jewelry design designer irish jewellers shop  angela hubel contemporary jewellery 18k rose gold domino diamond ring designyard dublin ireland paris rome new york milan venice dubai uae manhattan miami the hamptons beverly hillshenrich denzel platinum diamond aquamarine discus 21.27ct designyard dublin ireland contemporary fine jewellery gallery

Opulent Styling

There is strength in numbers: a single dainty piece may not stand out much, but 10 worn together can certainly have an impact. Layering up your jewellery is a popular option - think of the trends for "neck mess" or curated ears and hands loved by jewellers and celebrities alike. It allows the wearer to get creative and adapt the collection to the event - maybe less for the office, yet more for a night out.

Shimara Carlow rings, Bracelet stack by Ronan Campbell and Nicole van der Wolf

shimara carlow sterling silver 18k yellow gold blue topaz diamond stacker ring set designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland alternative engagement ring designer irish jewellers shop ronan campbell 18k white tennis bracelet lab grown diamond designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland

Double up on a necklace - or pair short with dramatic long chains like these by Sophia Epp, Josephine Bergsoe, and Sarah Herriot.

Unconventional Materials

Unconventional materials is where art jewellery becomes interesting - non-traditional materials bring together different disciplines to create small scale works of art or feats of engineering - or as seen from the jewellery corner: large statement pieces.

A good example is Roger Bennet's inlaid wood necklaces - using his skills as a woodturner and his personal predilection for detailed silver inlay to create small-scale pieces from his perspective, or tactile and colourful statement necklaces from our point of view.

roger bennett sterling silver black coloured maple emanating pendant with silver inlay designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland handmade jewelry design designer irish jewellers shop

For the maker they are an expression of technical skill and adaptation. For the wearer an expression of individual style and curiosity of the unknown - talking pieces for both.

Simon Harrisson Maia bracelets are perfect for this years' oversized double-cuff trend. The x-ray-like quality of Monika Jacubek's resin cone rings in gold and silver are a popular choice. Ursula Mullers anodised aluminum jewellery brings a contemporary graphic look.

maia hinged bangle black by simon harrison at designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland monika jakubec 18k yellow gold resin red cone ring designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland ursula muller blue tube stainless steel aluminium necklace designyard contemporary jewellery gallery dublin ireland

In short - one person’s statement is another person’s subtle. From a maker's point of view, it is often the answer to the question "what if I explode... ". Interestingly it frequently turns out in something that invites a deeper exploration of process and materials. And maybe that is all there is to statement jewellery: something that challenges the norm and sparks a conversation.

But don't just take our word for your appointment to see our selection of statement jewellery in person.

book your appointment to view Sam and Xavier Lafford's collections in person

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October 06, 2022 — Nicole van der Wolf