On the celebrity scene, substantive style is replacing the blinding bling of recent years. Even the hottest hip-hoppers and Hollywood stars are opting for a more toned down, sophisticated look replacing over-the-top sparkle with more subtle shimmer.
On the other hand, as the recent shows in Las Vegas indicated, the economy is impacting the jewelry market at the mid-level. Those with middle and lower incomes are hit more heavily by rising fuel and living costs coupled with a housing market that is cooling down, which obviously translates to less disposable income.
Then there is the fashion factor. Clothes changed quickly and dramatically in the past year, causing a shift in the way jewelry is worn. Clothes are very ornate--patterned and embroidered fabrics and jeweled accents combine with handbags that are heavy with metal hardware. Metallic leathers are also finding their way into the pocketbooks and shoes, sometimes getting an extra hit of sparkle from faux gems.
Yellow gold has roared back on the scene, its power to stand up to busy prints and ornamentation is stronger than that of a more demure white. The look for jewelry now is big and bold so it doesn't get lost in the shuffle of patterns and adornment. One big piece of jewelry--a cuff bracelet, big earrings, a pendant or oversized cocktail ring--can hold its own with fashion's passion for elaborate embellishment.