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Diamonds and Pearls: Slane & Slane’s Gorgeous Strands

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I'll admit it: I used to crinkle my noise in faux disgust when I saw young women in pearls. I suppose I always thought of pearls as being favored by the wealthy, pampered and privileged types. For one, I always saw rich, old white women wearing them with their tweed Chanel suits, Gucci bags, four-carat wedding rings, etc. — and not just wealthy women, but the "ladies who lunch" specimen, the women who get nannies to raise their kids for them while they go and steam in a spa somewhere. Laura Linney's character in The Nanny Diaries wore pearls. Charlotte York wore pearls (and while Charlotte was adorable, she was certainly prissy).

Sure, I have one fond memory that revolves around a pearl necklace:
when my cousin Cha-Cha got married (her real name is Maria but, since I
have about 12 cousins named Maria, they all have different nicknames!
lol), my grandma lent me her strand of pearls and clasped them around
my neck. Cha-Cha's wedding was a family affair, so all her bridesmaids
were her younger cousins (ironically, even though I was somewhere in
the middle as far as age, I was by far the shortest so that, once they
lined us up according to height, I was left to walk down the aisle
first… Story of my life!). That was
probably the only time throughout my pre-teens, teens and twenties when
I really felt comfortable wearing pearls — and, more than anything, it
was because my grandma had lent them to me, and I knew how much they
meant to her, which made me feel so special (we all wanted to be
Abuela's favorite, I suppose).

Truth be told, though, it wasn't a look I saw among younger folks with a more eclectic, adventurous sense of style. When I did see younger women wearing pearls, they tended to have trust funds, so that would put me off even more… It just seemed like a bad fit for me. No diss to anyone who has had a life-long passion for pearls — I'm just saying that, because of my own preconceived notions about pearls and what they represented, I was unable to appreciate their beauty or to see how I could make them my own.

But that all changed a few years ago. For one, pearl necklaces started popping up in all sorts of interesting designs and colors. There were multi-strand necklaces, chunky chokers, necklaces with antique-looking brooches or ribbon embellishments, and much more. All of a sudden, I started seeing pearls in a different light and, before I knew it, I was actually craving some pearls of my very own.

It seems that Hollywood has followed suit. Lucy Liu wore a fantastic oversized pearl necklace in a Season 2 episode of Dirty Sexy Money (I miss that show so much!). Kim Raver's character on Lipstick Jungle , Nico Reilly, wore some pretty interesting pearl jewelry, and even the trendsetters on Gossip Girl have been experimenting with pearls.

These necklaces by Slane & Slane represent the new frontier in pearl designs. From the flapper-esque vibe of the tassels that adorn the double-strand necklace pictured at top, to the edgy-but-feminine allure of the five-strand pearl necklace featured second from top, to the simple, low-hanging double strand necklace pictured third from top, these pieces manage to take a classic gem and reinterpret it for a modern woman.

Now, these are pieces I can wear all day and all night — all the while feeling like I'm being true to my own sense of style.

Slane & Slane Tassel Necklace, $1230; Five-Strand Necklace, $850; Three-Strand Necklace, $620. Visit SlaneAndSlane.com

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