Fashion: Dress up your best with jewellery

By Susan Edmunds

Few things make you feel as good as new jewellery.

Whether it's chunky beads, a delicate tennis bracelet or a bling ring, a bit of glitz can add a whole lot of glam.

Some of this country's most famous faces are getting in on the jewellery act, so there's a huge range of unique offerings to choose from. You should be able to find a piece that fits you perfectly.

I really like Boh Runga's new pieces, which she's putting out through New Zealand Mint. Trelise Cooper has also designed a collection, but I think Runga's is the stand out.

It's not too flashy but some of the pieces are amazing and totally different to what you might find elsewhere - I particularly like the stacker ring and some of the pendants that are obviously inspired by New Zealand's natural environment. You'd recognise their Kiwi-ness if you saw them anywhere in the world.

The collection is called "Small but Perfectly Formed", exactly the description of what I think the best jewellery should be.

Runga says: "I like to see people combining my jewellery with existing pieces already in their wardrobe. I like that layered-up look, if it works for you and you love it, wear it how you want."

Runga seems to have had layering on the brain when she designed her jewellery collection - lots of the chains can be worn at different lengths.

Runga explains: "There are three settings, one for the delicate hollow of the neck, such a beautiful place on a woman's body, and two a bit lower so the pendant can rest at different places on the decolletage."

Even the rings can be piled one on top of the other.

"The stacker rings may be my favourite out of all the pieces. The Perfect Circle is very pleasing to the eye and there is magic in the number seven - the seven days of creation, the seven chakras, so much meaning," she says.

Boh encourages people to wear the rings in a variety of ways.

"The ring is very feminine and dainty as a single band. A few sets piled all over your fingers is decadent but not over-powering. Wearing the stackers around the other rings in the Small but Perfectly Formed collection is a given. The more the merrier. A stacker set can also be split up and shared out among loved ones," Runga says.

Other pieces in the collection are designed to spark your patriotism, too - the hei tiki pieces are a tribute to the Maori icon and the Southern Cross uses the constellation as its inspiration.

Runga says she was captivated by the idea of navigating by the stars. "Imagine looking up into the dark sky, recognising that cross of lights and knowing where you were in a huge, never-ending ocean. The Southern Cross is an important symbol in our part of the world."

Other trends that are noticeable in jewellery this year are a move to more pastel colours.

Gems aren't so vibrant but are soft and pretty. Take the opportunity to mix and match and accessorise.

Or if, like me, you prefer your stones clear and your gold white, Pascoes have some studs that might do the (simulated) trick.

- Hamilton News

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