Sigmund Freud pondered the question: “What do women want?” That’s easy! a good answer, especially at holiday time, is jewelry! Despite a men’s efforts to come up with something original, jewelry is still the most coveted gift, and it is personal and can be sentimental. If you are wondering what to give someone special, whether it is your BFF or a love interest, jewelry is the way to go. One man I know made the mistake of trying to find something unique for his new bride. He (wrongly) decided to make his first gift of love not jewelry (which she would have adored) but instead, a hideous balaclava (knitted cap that covers the entire head and face). He couldn’t understand why she was upset. He thought it was a great gift: “because she said she was always cold.” Nope! Jewelry would have warmed her heart and soul much faster and better. The good news is that even if your budget it modest, you can really afford great jewelry. The six jewelry suggestions below will delight her. These are gifts you really can afford!
My pick for a higher-end jewelry line is beautiful, Belle Etoile. The meaning of Belle Etoile is “beautiful star,” in French, and that name is well selected. For Belle Etoile’s jewelry, whether modestly sized or a chunky bangle or ring, are statement pieces, with retail values from $125.00-$695.00. Wear one, and you literally feel that you are a shining star! The Belle Etoile line is available in five different collections: Italian Enamel, Italian Rubber, Seashell Pearl, Color Stone, and Resin, featuring Belle Etoile’s signature rhodium-plated and allergy free 925 sterling silver to prevent tarnishing. The photo above of the Belle Etoile “Dandelion” pendant from the Italian Enamel collection, which includes rings, earrings, pendants, necklaces, bracelets, bangle bracelets and cuff bracelets, doesn’t even begin to do the pendant, justice. It is so beautiful in person! This hand painted, enamel pendant feels cool, heavy, and smooth in your hand, almost like a touch-stone, yet it hangs easy and comfortably from a silken cord around your neck. When you move, the black and clear CZs sparkle. Every time I wear this black and white pendant, people come closer to check it out. And with good cause! Belle Etoile jewelry is not just something to accent your clothing, each is a little work of art that you will want to pass down to someone special (a long time from now)! The other collections are full of eye catching, exciting, on-trend designs as well. Whether you like the flash of colored stones, the funky kick of resin or rubber, or serene seashell pearl, flowers, stones, animals or abstracts, there is something to dazzle everyone. Visithttp://www.mybelleetoile.com to see all the collections and find a store that carries Belle Etoile, near you.
Is there anything more precious than diamonds? Fine jewelry brand Kwait, believes there is: clean water. That’s why Kwait Diamonds has partnered with the non-profit organization, charity: water, to produce a very special thing of beauty..with more than just one benefit. The Diamond Waterdrop Bracelet ($100) is a great piece of jewelry, but itis also a part of a Kwait Diamonds and charity: water multi‐platform campaign to raise awareness and help the non‐profit organization bring clean, safe drinking water to developing nations worldwide. The Diamond Waterdrop Bracelet takes a solid sterling silver water drop shape set with a smooth “hook” on the back, adds a tiny but sparkly, .02ct diamond, and marries this to a substantial but elegant, black braided leather bracelet, with a loop. A slender, silver “keeper” holds the loop together. The water drop glows, the diamond twinkles, and the black braided leather sets it off against your skin! It is really quite unusual — you really have to see it in person to appreciate how lovely it is. Two sizes means it will fit most everyone; large (7 1/2 inches) & small (6 1/2 inches). Celebrities loving this look include: Adrian Grenier, John Slattery, Jessica Stroup, Ellen DeGeneres, Will and Jada Pinkett Smith + family, and Jessica Stam. This bracelet truly looks much more expensive than the actual cost and will make an impressive gift. (Kwiat jewelry is often worn on the red carpet by high profile celebrities). It even comes in a velveteen pouch with ribbon ties. Buy the bracelet because it is beautiful, but consider the other (really important and compelling) reasons to purchase it: The water crisis effects 1 billion people, the majority of them are woman and children who bear the burden of unsafe water and unhygienic living conditions. 42,000 deaths that occur every week from this type of environment, 90% are children under five years old. Water changes everything in these communities. The benefits of funding projects in these areas are immense; improved sanitation, health, education and economic development are only the beginning. In an effort to fight for the well-being of children and their families, charity: water gives one hundred percent of the money it raises to project costs, funding sustainable clean water solutions in areas of greatest need. • charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean, safe drinking water to people in developing nations. They use 100% of public donations to directly fund sustainable water solutions in areas of greatest need. In four years, they have funded water projects in 17 different countries to serve more than 1.4 million people. 100% of the profits from the Kwiat Waterdrop bracelet will go to fund the Charity: water organization and allow them to give 100% of public donations to fund water projects. The Water Drop Bracelet, is available www.kwiat.com
There are so many jewelry choices for gift-giving, but Pop Expressions from Helzberg Diamonds gives you something more: amazing and affordable versatility as well as lots of bling for your buck. Helzberg Diamonds Pop Expressions has “starter sets” with a “base” (e.g. a pendant and chain, ring or bracelet) and then the ability to add lots and lots of different types of charms to adorn it. The base is magnetized, so the charms stay put until you “pop” them out and replace with another charm. You can even get the stainless steel key shown in the photo ($9.99) to help pop the charms in and out (although I just used a pen tip). Starter sets begin at just $79 .00, and the pop expressions charms average $29.99 to about $49.99. If you get two charms, you also get a round compact to keep them in (or buy the stainless steel compact for $29.00). Pop Expressions make a great choice for travel. Instead of bringing a big, heavy, bulky bag of jewelry, you can literally pack up your pop expressions charms in a compact no larger than the one you use to powder your face, and then pop the perfect charm to accessorize in the base, or change it to something else, in a flash. Pop Expressions are pretty perfect for holiday gift giving, too! Choose from birthstone, crystal, silver, holiday, initial, enamel, and so much more! I tried the swirl pendent with a square of red and clear crystals. It is nicely made, elegant, and will delight women of any age. While it is not a huge pendant, it adds quite a bit of sparkle and interest to a sweater or blouse. The quality is good and there are plenty of base jewelry designs to suit every taste. Consider that once you gift someone Pop Expressions, you will always have a perfect gift in the future: more charms to add to her collection! Start with a holiday charm, give her a birthstone too, to start her off. Visit the Helzberg Diamonds website to be dazzled by all the Pop Expressions choices, and to find a store near you (there are 230 of them).
For the Budget Minded: Who doesn’t love a little glitz and glamour in their lives? And, when it is holiday time, why not sparkle brighter than the holiday lights? Of course, gifts of jewelry are always coveted. These budget-friendly pieces let you gift of jewelry even if your wallet is nearly empty.m $29.99 to about $49.99. If you get two charms, you also get a round compact to keep them in. Pop Expressions are a great travel choice. Instead of bringing a big, heavy, bulky bag of jewelry, you can literally pack up your pop expressions charms in a compact no larger than the one you use to powder your face, and then pop the perfect charm to accessorize in the base, or change it to something else, in a flash. Pop Expressions are pretty perfect for holiday gift giving, too! Choose from birthstone, crystal, silver, holiday, initial, enamel, and so much more! I tried the swirl pendent with a square of red and clear crystals. It is nicely made, elegant, and will delight women of any age. While it is not a huge pendant, it adds quite a bit of sparkle and interest to a sweater or blouse. Visit the Helzberg Diamonds Pop Expressions website to be dazzled by all the Pop Expressions choices, and to order.
Bangles are one of the hottest trends around. Mango Tree Bangles (yes, they are lightweight wood) come in more than 50 colors and even more surprisingly, in four sizes: Up to 5.9” (S – Small); 6” – 6.3” (M – Medium); 6.4” – 7” (L – Large); and 7.1” – 7.9” (XL – extra large) and three styles: slim, samba (each $23.00) and bold ($27.00). If you’ve ever tried on a bangle that was painful to squeeze onto your wrist, or one that was beautiful, but so big you couldn’t comfortably wear it, the size choices will make you a big fan. Pick your style from slim to chunky, then pick the perfect color solid or marbelized. The wide, rich, cherry red bangle I tried would spiff up any holiday outfit. Bangles arrive in a light, mesh bag with Mango Tree logo, perfect for gift-giving. Visit http://www.mangotreebangles.com
What time is it? It’s Rumba Time!! Remember the trend of slap bracelets? A slap bracelet will automatically wrap around your wrist after you slap it against your wrist (or gently wrap it into place). Now Rumba time has created a slap bracelet watch ($25.00). The all in one watch and band is made of easy to wear silicone as are all the Rumba Time watches. But this watch is so versatile, you can pop out the watch and put it into another band. If I counted correctly, there are fourteen distinctive colors, and you can get additional bands in packs of two for $14.00. The one size fits all watches are the perfect gift for young and old. Additional deets on this fabulous unisex watch include a water resistant, analog, Japanese Quartz Movement (3.8cm wide); Soft Silicone Band (23cm long and 2.2cm wide), and luminescent Hands. If you’re not “slap happy,” Rumba Time has a wide variety of watches for under $25.00 to choose from. visit www.rumbatime.com.
Everybody likes jewelry, but some people fuel their passion for pretty things not just by wearing them but by selling them as well. I was recently introduced to Silpada, a unique jewelry company whose pretty line of sterling silver jewelry is available both online and through their at-home parties. Bonnie Kelly and Teresa Walsh are two mom-prenuers, whose passion for jewelry led them to start hosting fun parties with their own jewelry creations. There are thousands of independent representatives who have fun and make money hosting Silpada parties. Although I just took a quick look at a small part of Silpada’s collection, I was genuinely impressed with the on-trend designs and quality craftsmanship. One item that particularly caught my eye was a $45 set of earrings (w2284), these delicate sterling silver teardrop-shaped earrings with faceted pear shape crystal drops in the center add sparkle to any outfit from casual to evening. Better yet, with every purchase of these pretty pear-shaped earrings, Silpada will donate 10% of the purchase to a variety of causes benefitting women and children through the Silpada Foundation. If you are interested in purchasing Silpada jewlery or might want to consider hosting a jewelry party to make extra cash, visit www.silpada.com . You can learn more about the Silpada Foundation at www.silpadafoundation.org.