At the turn of the 19th century, something changed, and men hung up their chains and traded them in for tie tacs, and their signet rings for wedding bands, as the intellectual movement that came to be known as the Enlightenment brought with it a new respect for the rational and useful and an emphasis on education rather than privilege. Men's fashion shifted towards more practical clothing. In England, aristocrats began to wear simplified clothes that were linked to their work managing country estates. In the US, men got to work conquering a newly industrialized nation.Book Your Appointment
It was the beginning of what has been called the Great Male Renunciation, which would see men abandon the wearing of jewelry, bright colors and ostentatious fabrics in favor of a dark, more sober, and homogeneous look. This trend held on in fashion for nearly 200 years. Men were no longer allowed to express themselves the same way they once were, but a comeback was on the horizon- in the form of free love and even free-er fashion choices.
The 60's came in with a vengeance, rebellion in every sense rocked all corners of our globe and the restricting rules of how men (and women) should dress were thrown out the window. Beads and fabrics, chains and pendants were seen more often, jewelry being used to accessorize and tell stories in ways it had done for a millennia before. Fast forward to the 80's and 90's with yellow gold dominating many-a-man's wardrobe. Men's earring fashion returned, layers of chains, bracelets and watches were prevalent in fashion again- and again- without regard to class or status. Everyone seemed to own gold, thanks to media influences from all walks of life from Mr. T to Elton John; Bruce Springsteen to Tupac.
Today, we see that the availability of gold and jewelry is still present for both men and women, but why aren't males wearing it along the same trends as females? We'll, in some ways- they are; largely reserved for the world of Haute Couture and High Fashion, men's jewelry is taking a stand and dominating recent shows like the TEFAF, the world's largest art fair, where male jewelry was obvious and attractive, men from many nationalities proudly wearing and displaying brooches and lapel pins as they would a boutonniere.
Even still- a recent google search for men's jewelry will pull up a handful of articles on why men shouldn't wear jewelry, or limiting them to only 3 choices- a watch, a ring and cuff links- which is especially ironic coming from fashion magazines; fashion being an industry steeped in a rich history of breaking the rules, often in the same breath that they are written.
So where do we go from here? In today's world of expressionism and freedoms, men should reach out for any options that make them feel the way that women do when we wear jewelry. Power and love, sentiment and emotion. Guys- there is nothing wrong with wearing your heart on your sleeve- or lapel, neck, wrist, or finger.
J Thomas Jewelers is proud to offer a variety of Men's jewelry that is suitable for any taste. Shop our collection online or stop by our store in Rochester Hills today. If you're looking for something a little more custom, book your appointmnet with us and we would be happy to assist you!