Beaded Jewelry Trends for the Summer

The fashion business often peaks in the summer, when people are in the mood to shop and the weather lends itself well to dolling up for a day out. Jewelry is no exception—and this year, beads and charms are set to take center stage. Although they’ve been in fashion for the longest time, beaded jewelry never gets old—it goes well with a simple sundress, a shirt and jeans, and even a work ensemble. Here are some trends you’ll want to stay on top of, whether you’re buying jewelry or designing your own.

Nests: Easter may be over, but spring nests are set to be fashionable all through the season. You can find nest-shaped charms that need no adornment, or more elaborate pendants made with wire and beads. This lends itself especially well to necklaces, as they’re big enough to be centerpieces without being gaudy and loud. Many are intricately designed, so you’ll want to use one or two per piece so you don’t distract from the detail.

Flowers: Flower beads are back in fashion, and the variety is greater than ever. From pewter and copper to shiny Swarovski crystals, they come in pretty much any material, size, color, and design. Five-petal pieces are especially popular these days: more whimsical than roses and tulips, but less dominating than daisies and sunflowers. The best part is that you can use them as much as you like in a variety of pieces, and even make matching sets.

Owls: You may have noticed a big trend in owl patterns in the last two years, and it’s not expected to go away anytime soon. Cartoony owls have showed up in pendants, key chains, and phone charms, but this year they should make their way to other wearable jewelry as well.

Beaches: Shells, starfish, suns and parasols—these are slowly making their way into the hottest jewelry designs. Whether it’s because people are pining for the beach in the midst of the recession, or simply want to express their love of the water, it’s a trend worth following and one that should still be in fashion years from now.

Fibers: Not many people warmed up to the idea of putting feathers and fabric in their jewelry, at least not until this year. Expect to see lots of feather pendants and earrings, floral fabrics used as necklaces, and tassels hanging from people’s wrists and ankles. It’s easy to incorporate into your existing bead designs, but make sure not to make it look too overpowering.

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