‘Yes’ to simple and classic. ‘No’ to blinging medallions dangling from chunky chains. It’s high time for a simpli ed guide to the good-looking world of men’s jewellery.
For some of us, the phrase ‘men’s jewellery’, brings to mind shudder-worthy images of a hairy chest, sporting heavy gold chains, all framed by a barely buttoned shirt. But while some style purists still argue that a man needs no more ornaments than a watch and wedding ring, today’s smart and masculine offerings contain options that are light years away from those bad disco reruns.
The Internet is awash with images of ruggedly beautiful men accessorising well – be the source street-style photographers, bloggers, or red-carpet reporters. Men’s jewellery is fast becoming mainstream as millennial males become more comfortable with expressing interest and individuality in how they present themselves.
And so a few old-school accent pieces have started to make their way back into the gentleman’s wardrobe – the signet ring, designer cuffinks and the ID bracelet, to name a few. It’s worth taking a second to appreciate just how much one or two of these subtle additions can instantly step up a man’s style game. A well-placed leather bracelet, for example, will bring a little understated texture to an outfit, and can – depending on the style in question – appear ruggedly casual or surprisingly smart.
But how to wear them? Men’s fashion blogger Warren Beckett, AKA Monsieur Robot, has some thoughts: “Jewellery is perhaps the most di cult type of accessory for men to pull off. My advice is it should feel like an extension of your body – you can carry off anything with the right level of confidence.”
It also helps to wear pieces that have significance beyond sheer aesthetics – jewellery that has a history or was received as a gift. “I think for men, the key is that it have meaning.”
Good jewellery for men should look natural – like you’ve been wearing it for years. And as a general rule, it’s wise to err on the side of understatement. Employing a tie clip? Skip the lapel pin. Considering rings? Try something classic like a signet ring.
With bracelets, too, less can be more. Robert Bryan, author of the book American Fashion Menswear, is a proponent of the timeless chain link ID bracelet. With men’s jewellery, generally, “silver is the safer choice.”
Slightly more dangerous territory than bracelets and cuffs, necklaces are notoriously di cult to wear well; however the key here is to keep things as low-key as possible. Slim to medium width chains with pendants in bronze, silver or gold. And don’t go for religious iconography unless you subscribe to the religion.
But above all else, remember that whatever jewellery a man chooses, it should look personal, as if it’s a subtle extension of the kind of things he’d find in his wardrobe. You want to wear your jewellery – you don’t want it to wear you.