After years spent praising the wonders of gold jewelry, silver jewelry has emerged—or re-emerged—as the prominent metal of late. While gold is and will forever be a classic, if the Fall/Winter 2023 season at New York Fashion Week taught us anything, it's that fashion is changing. Some of this season’s most popular shows—Proenza Schouler and Tory Burch among them—were also the most wearable. This new season signaled a return to something as opposed to a departure from anywhere, as was the case over the last few seasons with the rise of so-called “dopamine dressing” following months spent in sweatpants and athleisure. This season, I'm not only drawn to more classic articles of clothing, but jewelry too. The silver pieces in my jewelry box—the pieces I’ve had since my teenage years or even before—are the ones I reached for this season, and I wasn’t alone. Silver jewelry has hailed as one of 2023’s biggest jewelry trends, both on the runway and off.
While many of us—myself included—never really left silver behind entirely, both the Spring/Summer 2023 and Fall/Winter 2023 runways proved that silver is the metal to wear for the months ahead. Models donned extra-long drop earrings—another popular silhouette, regardless of metal type—for Chanel’s Spring/Summer 2023 Ready to Wear collection. At Tory Burch that same season, some models wore silver arm cuffs and bracelets to match their exaggerated silver hoop earrings. At Veronica Beard, chunky silver chains were tucked under preppy blazers and collared shirts for Fall/Winter 2023, too.
Silver adornments popped up elsewhere on the runways more recently in New York at the Fall/Winter 2023 presentations: silver diamantes adorned black tulle gloves at Rodarte, oversized diamond-encrusted belts were popular at Kim Shui, and low-slung chain belt options popped up at Dion Lee. The latter also put enlarged silver rings on leather chokers and silver grommets on leather pants for Fall/Winter 2023, playing into the cool ‘70s-influenced energy carried throughout the week as a whole. And while gold was popular at some shows—as it was at Prabal Gurung—it was often shown mixed in with silver pieces, too.
Jenny Bird (opens in new tab), the Designer and Creative Director of her namesake jewelry brand (opens in new tab), points to “gold fatigue after years of the same boheme necklace layers, stacking rings and mid-size hoops” as the reason silver has returned to prominence lately. Moreover “the minimalist and voluminous high-shine shapes in jewelry that are also trending right now just really suit silver,” she says. “it works with their more elevated appeal.”
It’s true that the silver pieces we’re seeing now are less structured than your traditional gold hoops and bangles. Like the aforementioned armbands at Tory Burch, 2023’s modern silver jewelry has almost a liquid, natural look to it. “Experimental is the new traditional,” Bird tells me over email. “The silver we know from growing up was all in safe—traditional silhouettes, those simple chains, charm bracelets, very basic hoops and high school rings. Silver is now starring in a high fashion role as the finish on art-gallery-worthy pieces that are just as much mini sculptures as they are earrings,” she says.
Ahead, shop the best silver jewelry pieces to wear for the season ahead and beyond from brands like Jenny Bird, Catbird, and more. Plus, keep scrolling for Jenny’s favorite picks, and her take on whether or not you can mix metals.
The Best Silver Jewelry
I wore one single silver chain throughout middle and high school, and I recently pulled it back out for Fashion Week. Silver necklaces appeared on the runways in nearly every form for Fall/Winter 2023: Veronica Beard showed a selection of the aforementioned chunky chains, Proenza Schouler showed silver pendants on black chains, and Head of State showed hoop-style chokers that formed nearly perfect circles. Kendall Becker, a trend forecaster for Trendalytics, says that social buzz for silver necklaces specifically has jumped in the last three months: social posts featuring the piece have increased by 43 posts in the last 90 days, an +80 percent increase from last year.
When shopping for silver earrings this year, keep one thing in mind: the more sculptural, the better. At Laquan Smith for Fall/Winter 2023, wavy silver pendant earrings took center stage. At Tory Burch that same season, oversized safety pins added a touch of grunge to the otherwise sweet ensembles. Finally, at Ulla Johnson, tiny multicolored beads tied into the warm-toned collection.
Take inspiration from the Spring/Summer collections at Tory Burch and Alexander McQueen—plus the more recent Fall/Winter Ulla Johnson collection—when ring shopping this season. Look for enlarged cocktail-style rings and others that take a natural form that hugs the fingers almost like a second skin. Becker says that silver rings in particular have been buzzing on social media. The piece's Social Buzz has increased by 207 posts in past 90 days, a whopping +314% increase to last year.
Bangles are back in a big way this year, as evidenced by designers like Prabal Gurung. Stack them with other silhouttes like thicker chains a la Tory Burch or bedazzled cuffs like the ones that appeared at Brandon Maxwell. Or, wear them on their own for everyday appeal.
Mixing Gold and Silver Jewelry
If you're not ready to move entirely from gold to silver jewelry, consider mixing your metals. Yes, that's completely fine, no matter what the "traditional" rules might state. "When it comes to your jewelry styling, there is only one rule: follow your heart, not rules," says Bird.
The only thing to keep in mind when wearing your jewelry and growing your collection is how you would like to feel. Just like building your own sense of personal style, finding the pieces—and wearing them the way you want to—is everything. "Your jewelry should always serve up two things; meaning and confidence," says Bird. "I always mix something unique to me (like a vintage piece I’ve had for ages or a keepsake) with something new and fire. This results in a very personal mash-up, which is always the best look."
Meet The Jewelry Experts
Jenny Bird is Canada’s leading fashion jewelry designer. She is a self-taught designer who is passionate about growing a female-led business, which has seen explosive growth since the brand’s inception in 2008. As a multi-disciplinary creative, Bird initially started her label with handbags, and then expanded into jewelry in 2010, which quickly proved to be her passion. Her designs are striking yet wearable and are designed to be worn for years to come.
Experienced in luxury editorial, trend forecasting, and strategic consulting, Kendall is currently the Fashion & Beauty Trends Editor at Trendalytics as well as a freelance writer for Refinery29, The Zoe Report, LuisaViaRoma, WhoWhatWear, and Coveteur. Prior, she was the Assistant Fashion Director for Women’s RTW at Bloomingdale’s and contributed to global trend forecasting agencies. Plus, she’s a fashion media personality and expert that’s been featured in ABC, Cheddar News, Harper’s BAZAAR, GQ, Bustle, Sourcing Journal, Brides, and Vice.
Julia Marzovilla is the E-Commerce Editor at Marie Claire, where she covers everything from the latest beauty and fashion launches and sales to celebrity outfits and news. She also creates shopping guides that span every vertical on the site. Prior to joining the Marie Claire team, she contributed similar shopping stories to sites such as Bustle, InStyle, The Zoe Report, Who What Wear, and STYLECASTER. In her spare time, Julia can be found creating shopping guides for all of her friends, spending too much money on yet another pair of black boots, and cooking in her far-too-small kitchen.
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