NEW BEST FRIENDS

Byline: Marcy Medina

LOS ANGELES — Large, unique, colorful and customized are emerging as the buzzwords for Golden Globe accessories.
On a recent afternoon, the Beverly Hills salon of Harry Winston was humming with Hollywood stylists eyeing the latest haute rock: colored sapphires.
“Colored stones enhance diamonds like makeup lights up the face,” observed a Winston spokeswoman. “Your lip gloss will fade, but those sapphires will keep on shining,”
As the loose stones were arranged on velvet trays into impromptu settings, she talked of the increasing relevance of award season’s first act when it comes to setting accessory trends.
“I think the Golden Globes is now a force unto itself. It will be as big of a trend forecaster as any celebrity style barometer. Although people usually find the dress first, fine jewelry is becoming more of a focal point.”
Besides colored stones, she noted classic emerald-cut diamonds and teardrop pendants will be important.
Ali Soltani, owner of David Orgell, predicted the diamond briolette earring — a faceted oval cut — will be the freshest look on the red carpet.
“As always, diamonds are a backdrop,” he said.
And certainly to replace the ubiquitous gold nameplates: diamond initials up to 4 1/2-inches high. It’s one custom accessory that undeniably spells out luxe.
“Of course, only a few women can carry the largest pieces,” Orgell said, “so we customize the length of earrings and necklace or add or subtract diamonds based on their personal style.”
At Martin Katz, pink, yellow and light blue diamonds are poised to be big winners, especially set in straight-line necklaces worn in multiple strands.
But diamonds aren’t the only gems being personalized for the Golden Globes.
Shoes, too, are being customized and treated like jewels. Globe staple Jimmy Choo is banking on one of its most popular styles, the Madras, a chain metal sandal with suede straps that can be custom dyed.
“Stylists are looking for strappy, elegant stilettos,” said Tamara Mellon, the company’s London-based chief executive and co-designer. “We’ll still see a lot of gold, since it has become a neutral color.”
Mellon also designed a group of floral prints inspired by Saint-Tropez-bound jetsetters. The Muriel combines the two trends in a gold sandal embellished with handmade fabric flowers that can also be dyed and beaded to a celebrity’s specs. “I wanted them to look like something you’d find in a vintage store.”
For many of Tinseltown’s younger set, it isn’t enough for something to look vintage. It’s got to be vintage — with a Hollywood history to boot. Enter Neil Lane, purveyor of jewels once owned by Mae West and Ginger Rogers.
Milla Jovovich is among Lane’s fans, as is Kate Hudson, who already wears a Twenties Ascher-cut engagement ring and platinum wedding band from him and shopped for more baubles a few weeks ago.
Lane predicts that vintage looks both bold and sweet will be prevalent on award day. Stylist Jessica Paster was so taken with an aquamarine necklace and cuff from West’s estate that she’s considering asking a designer to create a dress around it.
“I sell mostly to young Hollywood now. This new generation of 23-year-olds is fascinated by Liz Taylor and Norma Desmond of “Sunset Boulevard.” They don’t find it grandma, they find it cool,” said Lane.
In fact, while jewelers like Lane are finding young customers enamored with Liz Taylor-style jewels, the White Diamonds diva herself bought a pair of Me & Ro’s gold and ruby drop earrings.
Still, the red carpet is about making statements, and Me & Ro designers Robin Renzi and Michele Quan are designing special pieces that are larger, bolder versions of the feminine designs.
Their three-strand, 18-karat gold and ruby bead necklace doubled to six strands “could replace a big old diamond, which is losing favor with the younger generation,” said Renzi, who counts Best Actress nominee Julia Roberts and past winner Gwyneth Paltrow among Me & Ro’s customers.
As for handbags, “women want either a clutch or something on the small side, not a long strap,” said Melissa Carden of Daniel Swarovski. Gold, fur, bright colors, geometric shapes are among the offerings and, for the Golden Globes, of course, they can be quickly customized.
As Neil Lane put it: “Everyone, even a star, needs a little dazzle.”

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