Iwas given my Grandma’s on my 21st, a friend got a new one to add to for another milestone birthday, and a colleague inherited hers many moons ago but still adds to it regularly. Charm bracelets have long been a family-led tradition, but, thanks to a resurgence of amulet-esque jewellery in the spring/summer 2018 collections, their status has changed. Now, charm bracelets are back in the spotlight as of-the-moment items that chime with fashion’s personality-driven mood.
Thomas Sabo has long been the purveyor of charms for the masses. It’s a business based on the ornamental pieces’ unique ability to act as a talisman, gifted with intent and collected with memories attached. As Susanne Kölbli, creative director at the German brand concurs: “Other than wedding bands, charms are probably the only other pieces of jewellery that really transport history. There has always been a tradition of collecting them and then passing them on to the next generation. The whole journey of charms is so romantic.”
Romance: it wasn’t lost on designers at the shows last September, where charms were also presented as collector’s items. At Dior, Maria Grazia Chiuri added to her Sixties art scene-inspired collection with piled-on bracelets reminiscent of the sorts that are amassed following global travels and experiences not to be forgotten. She followed suit with necklaces, dripping in semi-precious stones. At Gucci, too, there was a similar desire to channel eclecticism. And nothing realises Alessandro Michele’s escapist urge more than the piling of charms upon charms.