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Be a dazzler with these cool summer jewels

Go boldly into the steamy season with plenty of daring 'n' chunky gems and adornments. "Today" style editor Judy Gordon has the details.
/ Source: TODAY

When the heat is on and you want to dazzle, go boldly into cool jewels!

Large to dramatically oversized earrings, necklaces, cuffs and brooches are the perfect statement-making accessories for bare summer styles.

Keep things natural – the trendiest looks are inspired by the elements, textures and designs of Mother Nature.

We’ve captured all of summer’s best gems — from seashells to bamboo — right here in the latest edition of our weekly fashion and beauty update.

READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 New York Fashion week Septenber 2003 BILL BLASS
READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 New York Fashion week Septenber 2003 BILL BLASS

Super chunky
One of the hottest trends is super chunky jewelry — and lots of it. But this season, it’s organic. A natural mix of beads, stones and wood is the way to go; also look for feathers, suede or bone ornamentations. Want to make a major statement with a necklace? Start with a substantial layer of turquoise or coral beads, worn either long or short. Then add in a pendant or two. There’s no need to slavishly match as long your choices blend in with the organic theme. If you favor bracelets, look for large, stone-studded cuffs or multi-strand stretch ones with beads. The most popular earrings are a long, dangling line of beads or a stone-studded drop shape. But pick your spot — either necklaces or bracelets or earrings — and don’t wear in all three places at once!

Missing those endless, glorious days of summer camp? Hold your own “arts & crafts” class and make yourself some super-chunky, super-trendy jewelry! You may already have the main elements in your jewelry box. If not, gather up a few natural “objets d’art” from your yard or the crafts store and wire them onto your basic bead necklace.

READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 ANNA SUI New York Fashion week september 2003
READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 ANNA SUI New York Fashion week september 2003

Great news! Any day now all the best summer shoes will be going on sale, both online or at your favorite store. Do a little research and you just might score a real trend bargain. You’ll find wonderfully whimsical bejeweled sandals at every price point from Miss Trish of Capri and Kate Spade to Aerosoles and Nine West.

READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 New York Fashion week Septenber 2003 OSCAR DE LA RENTA
READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 New York Fashion week Septenber 2003 OSCAR DE LA RENTA

Another “of the moment” jewelry option is Lucite, a clear plastic resin that’s been working its way into accessories and jewelry for the past few seasons. You’ll find Lucite styles similar to colored plastics (and on heels as well). But don’t go overboard — this is one trend that is here today, gone tomorrow.

READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 PRADA Milano Moda Donna September 27th to October 5 th 2003
READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 PRADA Milano Moda Donna September 27th to October 5 th 2003

Get a jumpstart on one of fall’s new trends, the flower “brooch.” Many designers are showing live cut flowers worn as jewelry — not corsages, but as simple blossoms worn at the collar or neckline with a small piece of vintage-inspired jewelry. Try anemones, daisies or other “flat” blooms for the ultimate in summer accessory style.

READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 Miu Miu Milano Moda Donna September 27th to October 5 th 2003
READY TO WEAR SPRING SUMMER 2004 Miu Miu Milano Moda Donna September 27th to October 5 th 2003

Don’t miss the forest for the trees…. Bamboo may be the texture du jour, but jewelry and accessories made from other wood-like materials (and wood itself) are also very trendy. Look for real or real-looking pieces in walnut, rosewood, palm, ebony and other exotics.

Judy Gordon is a New York-based style consultant and the “Today” show’s style editor. She has been covering the fashion and beauty beat for the past decade. To learn more, you can visit her Web site, TheTrendReport.com, which highlights style trends in America.

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