Brad and Angelina are nothing compared to the intense attachment between human and dog. And one popular way to show off that special relationship is with glitzy jewelry for both you and your dog.
“Jewelry symbolizes a unique, deep bond and unflappable loyalty to one another,” says Dave Stevenson, a sculptor and jewelry maker, and owner of Artinjection in New York City. “Jewelry says, ‘We have something special between us,’ with a sassy dash of, ‘You non-dog lovers couldn’t possibly understand.’”
Bring on the bling
“On my first visit to Bergdorf Goodman’s 30 years ago, a woman came in with her white Standard Poodle and walked her dog into the fine jewelry department,” says Cecile Kent, president of Cece Kent in Morristown, N.J. “She proceeded to purchase a diamond necklace for her Poodle. I was in awe and became envious.”
Kent turned her envy into profit, creating a company that makes matching high-end jewelry for both hound and human.
“The ultimate demonstration of the bond between a person and their significant buddy is both wearing the same fashion. Carrying your little Yorkie in your arms, both wearing the same necklace, really says, ‘We’re a twosome.’”
Which came first, human jewelry modified for dogs, or fancy dog jewelry modified for humans? It’s not an age-old question, but from the look of most of the higher-end jewelry items and bejeweled collars, it seems that it’s the humans who appropriated Bella’s baubles, not the other way around.
“There isn’t really a huge difference between a dog’s neck and a human neck,” says Renata de Angelis, owner of Caserta Pets in Rosendale, N.Y. “It isn’t that difficult to modify a collar or dog necklace for a woman or man.”
“Charms are especially easy to adapt, since they usually clip on,” she says. “Bracelets get a minor redesign from a dog’s collar. And, actually, tiny breed dog collars make great bracelets as is.”
Charms are particularly popular these days, and have shown up on dog collars and bracelets for people and pets.
“I create my pieces to be beautiful enough that I would be proud to wear them myself,” says Tracie Smoak Annase, owner of Havasmoak Design in Palm City, Fla.
Following human trends
Today, you can’t be sure that the ice-encrusted collar on the dog at the park isn’t really worth a mint. More precious metals and stones are available for canine accessories than ever before.
“If you look at vintage jewelry books, you’ll find many pins and charm bracelets with dog influences,” says Karen Giarrusso, owner of Buddy G’s in Coventry, R.I. “There will always be some sort of jewelry made to reflect our love of pets.”
For the rest of us, dazzling rhinestones or crystals keep our dogs perfectly stylish. There’s always the old standby favorites, too: jewelry inspired by various dog breeds.
“For years, people have used breed key rings as a little reminder of their friend at home,” Kent says. “However, traditional bracelets and pendants are becoming a more personal way of expressing the bond that people want to communicate about themselves and their dogs.”