Dan Ahwa is fashion editor for Viva and Canvas magazines.

Fashion: Cocktail hour

No need for opening acts with rock stars like these.

'Cher Dior' Fascinante emerald ring.
'Cher Dior' Fascinante emerald ring.

The purpose of a good cocktail ring is to attract attention. Oversized cluster rings, or dinner rings, as they can also be called, are perfect for the after-five function where the dress code requires a little more effort. The advantage of a coloured cocktail ring is that everything else around it needn't be overworked. A classic black dress and pumps, for example, enhance the beauty of a peridot-coloured ring, the cool multifaceted blues of an aquamarine stone, or the warm amber glow from a citrine quartz.

Several designers are also rethinking the classic cocktail ring by way of new materials and daring designs such as Dior's "EverDior" ring of white crystals around a faceted exotic wood.

Local bespoke jeweller James McCarty is one such designer, focused on less conventional styles of ring shapes and working closely with clients to match the perfect cocktail ring style to the wearer's personality.

"What I love about designing made-to-order cocktail rings is the opportunity to represent and celebrate each unique client," explains McCarty. "Through colour, shape, form and detail my designs mirror each wearer's personality.

My focus is listening and presenting colour combinations joined in precious metals that ignite through design and detail with a beautiful outcome to be enjoyed day and night."

Despite the new interpretations, more traditional cocktail ring shapes still continue to inspire. For those bold enough to do so, wearing an over-the-top cocktail ring with a pair of jeans, a white blouse and a cashmere sweater is a modern approach to enjoying fine jewellery - all day, every day.

Gallery: Take a look at the rings we love

• Christian Dior (09) 356 6920
James McCarty
• Louis Vuitton (09) 358 0422
• Partridge Jewellers (09) 309 8925
Stewart Dawsons
• Walker & Hall Vintage walkerandhall.co.nz
Zoe & Morgan

- NZ Herald

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