Summer is your time to shine, especially if you love jewelry. Sure, you might have your favorite year-round pieces, but the hotter months are the best time to mix things up, especially when it comes to what’s new and next in terms of summer 2023 jewelry trends.
Whether you have subtler tastes or favor bold pieces, you have plenty of options to choose from when it comes to this summer’s most sizzling jewelry trends. Wear a ring that dances as much as you do on hot summer nights in your cocktail dress, or pair bright, colorful gemstones with a summer wedding look. However you choose to wear your jewelry, these trends will always fit the vibe.
As the weather gets warmer and the days get longer, see what to shop for the season below.
Beaded jewelry is always hot in the summer, but make the trend your own by choosing something off the *beaded* path. Whether you go cute and personalized or luxurious (read: turquoise and diamond beads), these beaded pieces will bring the perfect vibe to any summer shindig. “So precious yet unpretentious, the beaded jewelry trend is back and is ever popular with millennials and Gen Zs alike,” says MATEO designer, Matthew Harris. “Nothing says summer like a colored strand around the neck or anklet while one parades on the beach of your favorite summer destination. I am from Jamaica, so just wearing an anklet is like a rite of passage for me. I never leave home without one!”
One of my favorite jewelry trends is movement, particularly moving rings. They shake and shimmer with you and are bound to catch the light in a special moment. “We think of the summer season as the height of being bold and on the go,” said the mother-daughter design duo behind Monbouquette, Jenny and Lily Monbouquette. “The reversible and transformative elements of moving jewelry lend themselves to effortless versatility, not to mention, they are fun to fidget with too.”
Unusual Cuts and Shapes
For those who don’t follow conventions, go for something unique. Unusual cuts in gemstones and metal offer luxury that’s anything but boring. “Poppy colors and shapes that provoke sentiments, like hearts, are great for a fun summer vibe,” said designer Millie Savage. “If you’re going to spend big money on something, it should be versatile enough to wear all your life.”
If you’re someone who hates choosing between yellow or white gold, why not wear both? Mixing metals can be an art if done with intention. You can wear one piece that incorporates multiple metals or mix and match your favorite staples. “There is a major silver trend right now and the jewelry industry is evolving towards genderless pieces,” said Maor Cohen, designer of MAOR. “Adding a gold element elevates the piece with elegance while the silver keeps the edge. My favorite way to wear mixed metals is in bulkier layers. Layering is a great way to add to your personal jewelry style.”
Bangles have been on the runways for a few seasons, but it’s finally time to make the trend your own. Jewelry designer, Alexis Bittar, has become known for the bangles he’s created over the past 30 years. “There’s something playful about a bangle. They have always been a way to message individuality,” Bittar said. “One of the things I love is how, by stacking them together, you can create sculptural form. Stacking different shapes, layering color creates your own mini sculpture.”
When you think of chunky rings, your mind probably goes to the coolest person you know. If it doesn’t, you need to meet more people! Chunky rings are unapologetic and fearless, even inconvenient, but in a way that tells the world you don’t care as long as you’ve got your gorgeous hand candy. Jamie Books, founder and designer of Mason & Books, knows that when it comes to jewelry, the bigger the better: “Chunky gems and bright colors lead to an even more individualized form of expression when you wear them!”
Chains can be as subtle or bold as you want them to be, so they’re a perfect foundation for any foray into jewelry. “Chains act as a base for you to begin collecting interesting and meaningful charms over time,” said Jennifer Koche, designer of Storrow. “Dainty necklaces were very popular for some time, but the trend has definitely evolved to favor heavier link chains. Mixing different chain weights and lengths gives dimension to a stack of necklaces.”
Pinky rings are the ultimate cool accessory. Whether it’s a statement or an everyday staple, they give off a vibe unlike any other. “Pinky rings are the ultimate statement piece because they make such an impact by themselves,” said designer and founder of Boochier, Melinda Zeman. “I always tell my clients that you can be dressed in the most casual clothes, yet add a pinky ring and it’s a total transformation in the energy you’re giving!”
Calling all Samantha Jones stans: This summer, you’ll want to channel the sassy, bold character. “Drab and minimal design is dying,” said Uniform Objects designer, David Farrugia. “To me, summer jewelry is sexy and fun. For fine jewelry, the contrast between minimal silhouettes with super maximalist and bright gemstones is what makes something interesting but still timeless.”
Want in on a trend that’ll always be timeless? Go for big hoop earrings that’ll highlight your best features. “I see my tribe bringing back the big, disco shaker hoops this summer,” says designer, Jacquie Aiche, who’s never been one to follow trends. “I design everything based on feeling. The luminous gold discs catch the light just right.”
Punk and Rebellion
Brands have been polarizing their aesthetics between super punk and super sweet for a few seasons now. Maybe my sweet era is coming, but I believe everyone should have a soft goth era (mine was jump-started by a Twelve tooth necklace). Why not embark on that journey during the summer? Go against the grain and embrace your dark side in the brightest season there is.
Clear stones and crystals have their day in the winter. Summer is all about bright, lively colors to catch perfectly in the sun. “Color allows jewelry to be playful, and can take you from day to night in an easy and effortless way,” said the designers behind Sorellina, Kim and Nicole Carosella. “The combination of opaque stones with translucent ones can really make a piece pop, like the juxtaposition of serene turquoise against bright pink gems. Summer is the perfect time of year to start introducing hints of color and bring a bit of life into your wardrobe.”
The 2010s called, and they said charms are back in! If you had a Tiffany charm bracelet, or in my case a Twilight dupe, this trend is for you. Stack them on a bracelet, necklace, or even earrings and display what’s most important to you in a fun and flirty way. “Just the notion of wearing a charm lends itself to a more relaxed, playful mood,” said Jenna Blake Grosfeld, founder and designer of her eponymous jewelry brand. “Charms typically have a personal story behind them, connected to a certain place and time. Because of this sentimental component, they are almost guaranteed to never go out of style.”
Any Y2K bestie knows that enamel is in for summer 2023. “I think the explosion of fine jewelers using lacquer and cold enamel has been driven by its adaptability, versatility, and durability,” designer Francesca Villa shared. “Enamel allows jewelers to add color in a bigger and bolder way, adding the pop, vitality, and energy customers have been craving.”
Scarabs (a.k.a. beetles) aren’t so much a trend as they are a centuries-old jewelry staple. That being said, they’re becoming way more popular this season with designer shows inspired by Egyptian culture. I finally got my hands on a vintage scarab bracelet, but if you want something new, these brands have you covered. “With the 100th anniversary of the discovery of King Tut’s tomb, Egyptian-inspired designs are experiencing yet another revival,” shared Lauren Harwell Godfrey, founder and designer of Harwell Godfrey. “My take on the scarab is a modern, colorful take on this age-old symbol of rebirth and renewal.”
If you want to go more bohemian-chic this summer (note we said chic), there are plenty of jewelry options featuring “natural” materials to choose from. From wood and stones to a special, vegan-approved ivory by Gerda Goosen, stay connected with the earth through your jewelry.