December 24 2010
At a recent jewellery industry event, I found my earrings being scrutinised by a knowledgeable professional. “Very nice,” she said. “Plainly Asian, but what are the stones?” With such an expert I fessed up immediately – “Swarovski crystal” – and felt no shame in that. The Earring Boutique has recently become an online standby of mine, especially for eveningwear when, as someone who generally finds earrings easier to wear than necklaces, I often need a larger-than-daywear style but wouldn’t want to pay precious jewellery prices for something likely to be infrequently worn.
The site, which was set up by Carly Read two years ago, has proved a great resource for the winter party season. There is a huge selection in both clear and coloured crystal (always Swarovski) – I scroll through to colour-match styles to my potential outfit. Sizes can be hard to gauge but there is usually an additional picture showing them on the ear so you can see exactly how they will fit. They arrive promptly by post and I have always found the quality excellent – no stones falling out or dodgy butterfly clips. The site also gives the weight of each earring – useful with longer, chandelier styles.
The dark green, teardrop-shaped style (£85) that caught the jewellery expert’s eye (they also come in deep red, pictured) has proved very versatile even for daywear and always attracts attention. I’m graduating to a dramatic, gunmetal chandelier style with blood-red stones (£40) for midwinter parties – I fancy a touch of Goth. And the expert’s view once she knew the truth? She didn’t miss a beat. “They’re still very nice,” she said. “Swarovski does a good job.”