The Ultimate Guide to Styling Gold Jewellery

How to style gold jewellery

Who doesn't love the gorgeous glamour of gold jewellery? Its beautiful quality and colour make it the most sought after metal when it comes to jewellery. That said, even gold jewellery won't do much for you if you don't consider how to style it.

When styling jewellery, some people make the mistake of overdoing it without panache, leaving them looking overdone - and not in a good way. Others may be too subdued and draw little if any attention to their jewellery choices. There are also those who wear the same pieces day in and day out, some of which may be lovely but they get lost in repetition (and I bet they need a good clean too!).

When it comes to wearing gold jewellery especially, you'll really want to make the most of your investment and style it so you look your best when wearing it - and so that you show it off appropriately.

Here is our best guide to styling different types of gold jewellery. Let's dive in ...

Choose Your Main Piece of Jewellery

When it comes to jewellery, you'll often want to create a focal point. In other words, you will want to find a specific area that you want others to be drawn to when they look at you. Consciously or not, this is a way of communicating something about yourself to other people, so it pays to spend some time thinking about it.

A common mistake people make is either wearing too much jewellery in an unfocused way or wearing other jewellery that visually competes with the main piece of jewellery they want to be the focus.

For example, if you're trying to show off a beautiful gold necklace, but also wear a huge pair of hoop earrings, people may end up looking much more at your earrings than your necklace. Even if they don't, the earrings will still be a distraction. Instead of doing this, focus on the one piece of jewellery that you really want to stand out and build the rest of your jewellery styling around it.

If you want the focus to be on your earrings, considering wearing a very subtle necklace - or don't wear a necklace at all and go for delicate bracelets and rings. If the focal point will be your necklace, then wear small earrings and delicate rings.

Likewise, you'll want to avoid too many other accessories when you are wearing jewellery or wear more simple jewellery if you want to show off an accessory instead. If a beautiful scarf is the thing you want people to focus on, then consider subtle gold earrings and rings.

Finally, our favourite tip is to experiment with bending and breaking the rules. If you don't want to have a single focal point, then consider wearing a suite of jewellery that works beautifully together overall, perhaps because it's based on a colour, theme, repetition of design or general aesthetic.

For instance, choosing all gold jewellery with the same or similar coloured gemstones appearing in rings, earrings and necklaces can work beautifully, especially if you co-ordinate your clothing. Imagine a bright, colour-blocked dress paired with such a collection of jewellery.

Match Gold Jewellery With Your Outfit

Yes, gold jewellery is beautiful, but that does not necessarily mean it will work with every outfit you own. You should always consider jewellery as being part of your wardrobe and think about how it will work with what clothing you're planning on wearing and the other accessories you might choose.

In particular have a think about which colours will work with your gold jewellery. Wearing clothing with dark yellow, golden, orange or even red tones may cause it to get lost, for instance. Wearing it with neon colours is unlikely to work, but if you can pull it off, then good for you! 

Plain black or white both always look amazing with gold jewellery as they make the gorgeous warm colouring stand out beautifully. Blue and gold are complimentary colours, so a rich dark blue with gold jewellery will always look wonderful - think of lapis lazuli colourings. You can also consider a conscious clash of colours, such as a vivid magenta paired with gold. 

Be sure to experiment with different types of jewellery before you leave the house to see what looks best. If you're wearing something simple, you may want to spice up your outfit with a larger pair of earrings, a necklace, or a bracelet.

On the other hand, if your outfit is more elaborate, it may be better to wear more subdued jewellery, so it doesn't distract from what you are wearing. See above for advice about choosing a focal point.

Experiment with Mixing Metals

Mixing silver and gold used to be seen as a fashion faux pas. The excellent news is that those days are gone and you should feel free to mix your metals with abandon.

Real gold is a very expensive metal, so having smaller solid gold highlights paired with silver is a beautiful way to include the colours of gold and rose gold without needing to go all out investing in all gold jewellery. It's also just more fun and much more creative, so why not break the old fashion rules and experiment?

You could wear individual pieces which are designed to include both metals, which is something we do a lot of at Simone Walsh Jewellery. Alternatively wear small gold earrings or skinny gold rings with other jewellery pieces in silver.

Read our handy article on whether to choose gold or silver jewellery for more of our ideas on this subject.

Layer or Stack Your Gold Jewellery

While it's generally a good idea to not overdo the amount of jewellery you're wearing, layering or stacking is a great way to show off multiple pieces of jewellery at once and the layer or stack itself can be the focal point for your outfit. It's also a great solution when you don't know what to wear or if you want to dress up the most boring outfit.

When it comes to necklaces, layering works best with dainty, lightweight necklaces of different sizes, shapes and lengths so they generally don't overlap. You will often choose a focal point (it's a common theme!) and build the layers around it so that one necklace is the stand out. However, you can also make this look work with a more delicate and sparse array of small but intriguing pendants, each of which will grab the eye at different times.

You can also wear a variety of different rings in a stack, either on one finger or spread across several. Experiment with mixing gemstones, simple bands combined with an elaborate cocktail ring, etc.. It's all about the look you're wanting to pull off. Gold rings are wonderful to add to a ring stack with other metals as they provide that lovely pop of warm colouring. Ring stacks are a great way to mix metals, but if you can and the outfit suits, go all out and wear an entirely gold stack for a very elegant look.

Bracelets are also an excellent option for stacking and even earrings if you have multiple piercings.

Check out our guide to building the perfect ring stack. Also see our handy article about how to mix, match and stack your jewellery.

Understand What Gold Jewellery Really is

There's a lot of confusion about gold jewellery and the different types of gold (or gold coloured) jewellery that are available. People especially get confused by price when shopping for gold: why are some pieces so much more expensive than others?

The simple answer is that not all gold jewellery is solid gold and some of it isn't gold at all. If a gold coloured piece is inexpensive, then it's almost certainly not made of solid gold. It may be plated, gold vermeil (a heavy plating of gold over silver), gold filled (a thick bonded coating of gold over base metals) or just brass (which we don't recommend you wear against your skin).

Well made gold vermeil and gold filled can wear well over time, especially compared to plated jewellery, but it will eventually wear through to the metal beneath. These finishes certainly have their place and are a more affordable way to wear gold jewellery, but they are definitely a compromise of price over quality and longevity.

If you want a piece of gold jewellery that will wear well and last a long time, then you need to invest in solid gold and that will be considerably more expensive. The good news is that real gold will keep its value over time and can even increase in value depending on what the markets are doing. Gold is always a good investment.

The key takeaway is that when shopping for gold jewellery, make sure you understand what the pieces are really made from and whether the price tag is a fit for that material and your expectations. If the store selling the jewellery isn't clear on what materials their pieces are made from then they're best avoided.

As a final point, also consider what carat (or karat if you're in the US) the gold is as it does make a difference to the colour. The higher the carat, the more vivid the gold colour will be, with 24 carat being pure gold. If you're planning on stacking gold rings or layering gold necklaces, then the differences in colours between higher and lower carats of gold may be more noticeable than you'd like, so do think about this when shopping.

Here's a handy article to help you understand the different types of gold jewellery and another about gold more generally.

Experiment With Your Style

Many of us get caught up in the same styles we've had for years. For example, if you're someone who always wears studs in their ears and a tiny necklace, it may seem odd to suddenly throw on a choker or big hoop earrings.

However, it never hurts to experiment with changing things up. Not only could it get you out of a rut but you may also find a new style you prefer even more. It might even give you a fresh perspective on life in general!

Also, keep in mind that you never need to be limited to one set style all the time. There's no rule that says you need to always wear the same style or stick to the same aesthetic. Mix it up a bit and see how it goes.

For instance, if you always wear silver jewellery, take a look at wearing all gold or adding some gold into the mix. If you're still sticking to the fashion 'rule' of never mixing metals, then try snapping out of it and combine some silver and gold with one outfit.

Our best tip in this regard is to simply spend some time in front of a mirror with an array of jewellery, clothing and accessories. Try out all sorts of combinations, from the boring to the radical, and see what works for you. Make note of combinations you like so you can remember them later. Also note any gaps in your wardrobe or jewellery collection that you'd like to fill.

So step out of your comfort zone and experiment with new styles. If you need help getting ideas, check out the latest trends in magazines or on platforms like Instagram and Pinterest. Also see our in depth article with 15 top jewellery style tips to help you get out of that rut.

Best Guide to Style Gold Jewellery

There you have it: our best guide to style gold jewellery. All in all, wearing gold jewellery will provide you with a classy, timeless, and stylish look.

By doing things like choosing your focal point, matching your jewellery correctly, laying your jewellery, buying customised jewellery, and experimenting with new styles, you are bound to have all eyes on you.

So, why not purchase some gorgeous gold jewels? At Simone Walsh, we have a variety of stunning gold pieces to choose from along with a variety of other pieces of jewellery. Shop online at our store today.

Simone’s jewellery never ceases to amaze me - I love her originality and thoughtfulness.

Heather - Adelaide, Australia