Do Men Wear Pearl Jewellery?
- Thursday, 27 July 2017 19:06
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The answer is a resounding ‘yes’ but let’s look a little at the history.
If you look at male portraits of the 14th-17th centuries, you’ll often see men wearing elaborate jewellery. This continues for much longer, well into the 20th in non-European societies such as those in North Africa, the Middle East, and Asia.
The men concerned are, of course, almost exclusively royalty or nobility though sometimes also of the rich merchant classes. If you look, you’ll see pearls play a massively prominent part in the masculine jewellery of the time. This includes items such as earrings, brooches, necklaces (none of which were considered exclusively feminine at the time) and rings.
In many portraits, the men are as festooned as the women or even more so.
The 18th century
In Europe and North America, for reasons that aren’t clear, male use of jewellery in general (not just pearls) starts to decline in the later 17th and18th centuries.
It may have simply been fashion changes, or perhaps the effects of Puritanism earlier on or it could have been the increasing association of males with the rationality and theoretically anti-frippery of the times. The industrial revolution also played a part as males become more and more associated with steel, iron and steam.
Victorian plain-dress also exacerbated things until male jewellery becomes largely restricted to pocket watch fobs, sometimes rings and military medals.
The 20th century
By the mid-20th century, it was commonplace that men wearing jewellery was exceedingly rare and was often considered ‘Bohemian’ to do so. Exceptions might have been wedding rings or perhaps chains often worn invisibly under shirts.
All these changes with the hippies in the 1960s/70s. Suddenly men discover jewellery again and start wearing earrings, beads, brooches and so on. This revitalisation of jewellery as a male fashion item continues today.
We offer a stunning range of pearl jewellery for men, such as bracelets and cufflinks and necklaces. They’re hugely popular. We also have added accessories to our range for those men if not wearing jewellery still love their trinkets and gadgets or if it’s to say, “well done, you deserve it”. Some items Lust include in this range are key rings, oyster forks and other accessories.
So, jewellery and men are back together after some centuries of having parted company in the western world and it’s a good thing too!