Against everyone’s innocent predictions last March, we are now coming up on a full year of life under stay-at-home orders and working from home. And, while dressing as if our video calls were red carpet events (at least up top) was a fun way to delay Zoom fatigue for a few months, it seems that recently, many of us are opting for clothes which come as close to pajamas as the office dress code allows. It is my professional opinion that jewelry, and lots of it, is our nearly effortless solution to the conundrum of less than put together WFH outfits.
It is undoubtedly the case that my advocacy for Zoom-friendly jewelry comes from my life-consuming attachment to jewels as well as my unhealthy quarantine habit of buying pieces at every opportunity, but take this bias as an indication that my taste is flawless rather than as a sign that my emphasis on jewelry is horribly overstated. As pertains to Zoom-friendly jewelry, necklaces are the best investment since your neck is more likely to be visible in a video call than bracelets or rings. And the logic is probably quite clear to those of us who have stopped putting effort into dressing sharply for 8 a.m. team check-ins.
Clothing has to be changed daily, washed after every use, and kept as far away from food and drink as humanly possible, which is asking a lot since WFH means eating and drinking coffee around the clock. High quality jewelry, on the other hand, does not have to be changed daily, can go without washing for extended periods of time, and can be submerged in coffee, marinara sauce, rosé, or any combination thereof without a major problem. A daily necklace of high quality materials is, without contest, the laziest way to appear put together, but why stop at one?
This is where my quarantine obsession, #neckmess comes in. For a few years now, the fun 60s era trend of layering an array of pendant, sautoir, and station necklaces has been back in vogue, championed in part by the iconic Gwyneth Paltrow, who is fond of layering fabulous pieces on screen and off. As demonstrated by the lovely Mrs. Goop, hallmark themes of #neckmess include astrological, zodiac, and nature-inspired pendants that hang from a mixture of glamorously long and intimately short choker chains. Of course, as with everything else in life, jewelry should be fun and personal, so feel free to step outside the bounds of the traditional limits and rock any piece that sparks joy.
For example, my friends at Tiffany & Co. on The Magnificent Mile helped me create the breathtaking neck chandelier that you see above; rather than being astrologically motivated, our creation favored natural motifs rendered in diamonds from the Paper Flowers collection, the Tiffany T collection, and the Elsa Peretti line. And, because this article is really nothing more than my thinly-veiled attempt to get you to flood my DM’s with pictures of jewelry, for god’s sake please send any and all #neckmess photos to @milesfrankliin on Instagram!
Cover image of Gwyneth Paltrow via