Stylish Jewelry Storage
Source: Blueprint, January/February 2008
Jewelry boxes can be handy, but they can also turn your prettiest baubles into unsightly nests of knots. Here are four display-worthy organizing ideas we're sure you'll take a shine to.
Open Drawer Policy
Let your hodgepodge of china collect something besides dust: Orphaned teacups and saucers are perfect vessels for sorting jewelry, and, when arranged in a velvet-lined drawer, they give you an easy-to-scan bird's-eye view of your bijoux. To set it up, measure the height of the drawer's side (not the front), then gather dishware that's slightly shorter. Line the drawer with velvet or felt to prevent rattling and sliding, then position the porcelain. Hook drop earrings on rims of cups, nestle necklaces within them, and stash chunkier beads and bangles on individual saucers.
Credits: Cotton velvet fabric, $27 per yard, B&J Fabrics, 212-354-8150. Shop china on sites like ebay.com.
"Out of sight, out of mind" has long been your mantra -- and the explanation for that "missing" strand of pearls. So why not transform your most-neglected pieces into art? You'll never misplace a pendant that's modeled by a faux-marble bust on your dresser -- and chains are less likely to knot when they're stored the way they are worn. If classical sculpture isn't quite your style, drape jewels over a candelabra or pile bangles on an artists' 3-D wooden hand model.
Credits: Similar faux-marble busts, from $98, statues.com
Towering trees aren't the only flora that can sport rings. A few well-chosen branches from your last hike or a couple of dried vines from a florist shop can, too -- if you trim them with the 24-karat kind. We stole (er, adapted) this idea from L.A.-based jewelry designer Kathleen Ward, who dreamed it up for a photo shoot and then stuck with it: "A lot of my pieces have delicate shapes and chains, and hanging them on the branches kept them from knotting up," she says. We found that cuttings with horizontal offshoots work best; just "plant" the stems in a vase filled with rocks or sand (for stability). You can also spray paint the twigs black or gold for a more striking look.
Credits: Sandblasted "manzanita" branches, $12 each, Dry Nature, 212-695-8911.
Pick of the Glitter
Inspired to go mining for more gems? Here are some of our go-to mother lodes of style (many of which are represented in this story):
Vintage beads and intricate wire work (byboe.com)
Chunky resin in organic shapes (dinosaurdesigns.com)
Kaviar and Kind
A curated selection from contemporary artists (kaviarkind.com)
Melissa Joy Manning
Beautiful pieces with a slightly harder edge (mjmmetal.com)
Playful-yet-understated wearable art (tedmuehling.com)