Trends are as diverse as they are exciting. That is a fact taken to heart here at Jewelry Trends with the Summer 2018 forecast, and is a testament to the industry’s vibrant creativity and unceasing pursuit of style and beauty.
There are plenty of sources of inspiration for jewelry trends, from nature to modernity, both high fashion and kitsch. But perhaps one of the most influential sources for jewelry designers and trendsetters today is pop culture. Or the collection of mainstream attitudes, ideas, and phenomena of our increasingly globalized world.
A rich and multifaceted influence
It is difficult to imagine just a single aspect of pop culture from which to draw inspiration. Pop culture both permeates from society, most commonly manifesting through entertainment, sports, politics, technology, and even slang. In this way, jewelry trends can stem from a million different points within pop culture.
In fact, there are entire industries upon direct application of pop culture imagery and concepts to jewelry.
Trend Hunter’s list of pop culture jewelry designs illustrates this, with jewelry being designed to fit fans of particular franchises, stories, and people. The list goes through some pretty interesting examples of pop culture-inspired jewelry. From Wonder Woman rings to Star Wars’ Bobba Fett earrings.
These pieces of jewelry are not only expressions of support or affinity to certain characters. They can also be also an art form by themselves. For instance, designer Maraux Lange’s ‘Plastic Bodies Series’ literally deconstructs Mattel’s iconic Barbie dolls to create uniquely macabre and thought-provoking pieces. In this way, jewelry designers draw inspiration from pop culture phenomenon to convey messages or provoke certain emotions among customers.
Always under the surface
On the other hand, pop culture-inspired jewelry trends aren’t always as clearly pronounced. This is common when it comes to pop culture icons. Or people who can heavily influence the style and motifs of a certain period. And do it just without putting their names or imagery directly onto the pieces themselves.
For instance, Jewellery Monthly’s guide to jewelry trends over the past century explains how icons like Jackie Kennedy popularized statement pearl necklaces in the 60s; while David Beckham made male jewelry more mainstream in the ‘90s.
A striking example of this is Cleopatra.
Other cultural icons from farther back in history continue to manifest themselves in jewelry design trends. Of course, through the help of pop culture. Cleopatra continues to be an iconic figure in public consciousness because of the plethora of media projects surrounding her.
Mogul Kim Kardashian posed as the pharaoh in a photo shoot; over two dozen films explored Cleopatra’s character; music from the likes of Frank Ocean, Katy Perry, and Madonna all heavily reference the Queen of the Nile; and video game creators have used the female ruler’s image as a symbol of allure and power.
Foxy Bingo tapped into Cleopatra’s popularity and enigmatic personality through a slots game inspired by the pharaoh. The game incorporates ancient Egyptian motifs and graphics associated with Cleopatra’s rule. Resulting in yet another pop culture iteration of her character.
When combined with jewelry, Cleopatra’s influence are typically seen in gold and blue stone pieces, most notably in large necklaces snake-like arm cuffs, and statement bangles commonly associated with Egyptian designs, which were also discussed previously here on Jewelry Trends.
As you can see, pop culture and jewelry trends are an interesting combination. As the former can be quite kaleidoscopic and both are constantly adapting to the times.