recognize suggesting hearts as a trend right around Valentine’s Day is the equivalent of pitching florals for spring. It’s not groundbreaking, but hear me out.
Perhaps the most ubiquitous motif in the history of jewelry, hearts quickly conjure up a feeling of joy.Christina Alexiou
After the recent discovery of the gold and enamel heart shaped pendant, dating from around 1521, by an amateur metal detector in the English countryside, hearts deserve special attention once again. Because there is no denying part of the worldwide enthusiasm for the Tudor jewel was the romantic symbol and link to royal lovers King Henry VIII and his first wife Katherine of Aragon.
Perhaps the most ubiquitous motif in the history of jewelry, hearts quickly conjure up a feeling of joy. The silhouette is also easy for designers to create around because it is an expansive symmetrical broad canvas. Of course, the best designers infuse their heart jewels with individuality and show just how stylish, sassy, sweet and even wild at heart the motif can be.
Hearts are like an unofficial mascot of Greek designer Christina Alexiou’s collection. Visit her website and there is a pulsing gem-set heart on the landing page. A heart motif sits in the corner.
Christina’s heart collection has depth and breadth with chain necklaces, all kinds of earrings, bracelets and fabulous rings. Some of the pieces are gem-set and others have engraving on the heart motifs.
A former interior designer for nightclubs, Christina knows how to create an atmosphere. From the look of her collection, she is in the mood for love.
When Lauren Harwell Godfrey was sketching the first design for the heart that would become the silhouette for her charitable collection she realized, “My signature triangle motif placed over the heart in repetition created what looks like a broken heart that has been put back together.”
The poignant symbolism, beautiful design and the fact that 100% of the proceeds of sales from these pieces are donated to charities, including Human Rights Campaign, Everytown and NAACP, has touched a chord. Lauren has donated tens of thousands to several organizations through the hearts.
Above and beyond the charity collection, Lauren creates various other heart pendants and earrings that are bold architectural statements rendered in gold, diamonds and a seductive pastel palette of stones such as Maylaya Garnet and ombre peach moonstone.
There are all types of love in the world and Robinson Pelham reflects several different flavors with its collection of hearts.
Pavé-set diamond open hearts on chunky choker chain length necklaces are designed for statement makers who want to boldly spread their love. Flirty renditions of cupid’s heart are made by the English label in a line called Earwish. The little charms hang off of huggies and can be bought individually.
While hearts have been perpetually popular in jewelry, they might have been at their peak during the 19th century when sentimental designs were all the rage. Considering how Single Stone takes cues from this era, it’s no surprise the dreamy collection is filled with hearts.
All shapes and sizes of hearts can be found at Single Stone. There are pieces covered with antique diamonds and a charming little gold heart.
A heart necklace with an acrostic design is the most luxurious and romantic. The word Dearest is somewhat secretly conveyed in the first letter of each gem set in the heart charms: diamond, emerald, amethyst, emerald, sapphire and turquoise.
Hidden messages conjure up all the symbolism in the Tudor heart jewel like the Tudor rose and the pomegranate that reflected the lovers Henry VII and Katherine of Aragon. Like hearts, it’s a language of love.
The Founder and Editorial director of the online fine jewelry magazine The Adventurine, Marion Fasel is as well known for trend forecasting as her comprehensive knowledge of jewelry history. Her tenth book on 20th century jewelry design B is for Bvlgari: Celebrating 50 Years in America was published on December 16, 2022.