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Fashion Notes: Giddy Charms
by Li Wen

Helena 1Bronzed goddess, Helena Christensen, in Ole Lynggaard Sweet Drops 2012 catalogue

While I tend to be easily distracted by the newest and shiniest in makeup, and as flighty and compulsive as a spring chick in acquiring updates to my wardrobe, when it comes to jewellery, my habits have always tended thus: find a signature piece that I love, elegant yet understated, flexible enough to hold its own with almost any outfit, and then wear it continuously (in the shower, if possible) until either loss or breakage necessitates the start of my search for a replacement.

My tastes in jewellery are not adventurous. In a purely aesthetic way, I can admire the sparkle of an ear lobe dripping with antique diamonds, the clink of bracelets stacked up the wrist like body armour, the goth-bohemian hardware of Abbey Lee - but they are not for me. All jewellery, in my case, is mostly sentimental, a physical anchor for me as I move through constantly shifting outward personas. Against the play of the ephemeral, my jewellery is something precious I wear next to my skin, like a secret. So it is a rare occasion that I start to daydream about a new addition.

I have been eying the Sweet Drops collection from the Danish jewellery house Ole Lynggaard for almost a year now. Customisable bracelets - the word "charm" is resolutely avoided, and indeed feels too slight to describe pieces with so much individual character - they combine the earthy minimalism of soft, exquisitely smooth calf leather with quietly lustrous drops of gold, silver, precious and semi-precious stones. The conceit is that there are no hard edges, no colours or shapes unfound in nature; the Sweet Drops take on the appearances of dew, pearls of caviar, sea-foam, and acorns. But they don't come cheap: a leather bracelet ($495 AUD) with two Sweet Drops can easily cost upward of $3000 AUD.

There are compromissory alternatives, of course. The Rapture collection from Najo, an Australian brand specialising in sterling silver jewellery, looks heavily modelled on Ole Lynggaard, and is a fraction of the price. But the addition of silver clasps, and their overwhelming "shininess", fail to capture the heart and the imagination the way the Sweet Drops do - the illusion that, like a creeping vine or a naked, fresh rose, they would be eternally graceful, and never out of place on any occasion.

Ole Lynggaard Sweet Drops are available from selected retailers around the world.

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