Sunshine style: Vibrant enamel jewellery for summer


Enamel jewellery. On the face of it, the vast array of vividly coloured designs on offer this season may seem like little more than yet another facet of the Y2K revival trend. Not so, says Katie Rowland, Head of Creative at Astley Clarke, which has pressed this humble material into service for its new Cirque collection.

“Enamel has been used in jewellery for centuries,” Rowland explains. “It’s an art form, a craft in fact, in its own right. Astley Clarke has a rich archive celebrating colour from gemstones to enamel. It is very much a part of who we are, so it felt right for us to embrace it.”

Referring to the process of applying a coat of coloured glass paste or powder to the base metal of a piece of jewellery, before baking to an extremely high temperature so as to fuse the two materials together, enamel jewellery dates back as far as ancient Persian, Egyptian and Chinese cultures. However, while it has traditionally been used to add intricate, delicate features to jewels, this season’s take on the craft is big, bold and vibrant.

“Colour, in general, is having a moment post-pandemic through gemstones and enamel,” says Rowland. “It’s mood-boosting and playful, allowing joyful expression through jewellery. It touches everyone with positive energy.”

Wherein lies the appeal of enamel – especially for summer. Not only can it achieve the kind of saturated neon shades, pretty pastels and primary hues not usually seen in traditional gemstones, it also happens to be significantly cheaper than ruby or sapphire. Perfect, then, for poolside styling. Get your piece of the action with our pick of the best enamel jewellery for summer.

Boochier Fruit Hoops enamel ring

The playful nature of enamel doesn’t mean it can’t also be a conduit for some serious fine jewellery. Take, for example, Boochier’s Fruit Hoops collection. Each fluid piece is crafted in 18k recycled yellow gold and studded with diamonds, while also evoking movement and elasticity with woven, intertwined designs in fruity hues.


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Bea Bongiasca Baby Vine enamel ring

If you’re looking for the real driving force behind enamel’s revival, look no further than Bea Bongiasca. The Milanese jeweller has been quietly espousing the benefits of the material since she founded her eponymous house in 2014, in the process growing a loyal following including Dua Lipa, Bella Hadid, Julia Roberts and Tessa Thompson. This amethyst and Barbie pink enamel Baby Vine ring is exemplary of her sculptural, exuberant style.


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Astley Clarke Celestial Astra necklace

For fans of Astley Clarke, the stud earrings in its Celestial Astra enamel collection may seem very familiar. A reworking of a classic nautical design inspired by navigation instruments of the 14th and 15th centuries, this rendition features white sapphires set against deep green, white or black enamel (and a very summer holiday-friendly price tag).


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Missoma Enamel Haze ombre earrings

If you really want to buy into the trend, then go big. And nothing will help you do that better than Missoma’s Enamel haze collection. These chunky 18k gold-plated drop earrings are finished with an aquatic ombre enamel offering a contemporary take on the classic gold earring.


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Roxanne Assoulin A Walk in the Park enamel bracelets

All the fun of an effortless bangle stack with, literally, none of the effort? Colour us charmed. Rendered in a vibrant palette of red, blue, yellow and gold, Roxanne Assoulin’s set of three enamel and gold-tone beaded bracelets are the perfect space savers for hand luggage-only trips to sunny locales.


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Cece Jewellery Rose enamel pendant

Putting a modern twist on traditional enamelling, British jeweller Cece Fein Hughes takes her inspiration from the evolution of enamel jewellery throughout history. Each signet ring and pendant necklace features a miniature artwork taken from the annals of adornment, be that the headpiece of a Byzantine princess or a Celtic warrior’s battle armour. Whether you prefer her tougher, tattoo-style designs or romantic pieces, like this Rose necklace, each is hand-painted and completely unique.


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Aurélie Bidermann Positano enamel bracelet

Paris-based jeweller Aurélie Bidermann does a fine line in brightly-hued enamel pieces, alongside more classic charm bracelets, hoop earrings and delicate necklaces. Designed with stacking in mind, this coral-coloured bangle, inspired yb the classic Italian destinaiton of Positano, has ‘beach club party’ written all over it.


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Bottega Veneta Triangle enamel earrings

It isn’t just jewellery specialists getting in on the enamel action – luxury fashion houses like Bottega Veneta are clued up on its appeal too. Crafted in the same sky blue and shamrock-green that have been such a hit on the brand’s bags and sandals, these statement earrings sees a series of enamel triangles interlocked to create a chunky design that will add an arty edge to everything from a white T-shirt to a black cocktail dress.


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