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Instead of investing in an entirely new wardrobe, you can elevate your look just by adding a new accessory or two – or twelve. Below Shop TODAY rounded up some of the best, most statement-making and most-popular Black-owned jewelry brands that will help you look put together – even in your most basic t-shirt and jeans.
Whether you prefer earrings, necklaces or bracelets, we've found something for every jewelry lover out there. The best part? They're all pretty affordable!
Here are 15 of our favorite picks.
We're in love with these darling heart earrings from Aquarian Thoughts, a brand that specializes in handmade jewelry using gemstones and blended metals. Available in gold and silver, the sweet accessory looks romantic when worn solo or can be easily layered with a pair of hoops.
When it came time to name her jewelry line, founder Nadirah B. took inspiration from her astrological sign. The Aquarius wanted to express her creativity and uniqueness through her work and it's certainly paid off so far. One happy Etsy customer gushed: "Love my new earrings! They’re cute, dainty and wonderfully made!"
Reach for the stars! Or wear them on your ears with this playful pair from Lola Ade. The trio of stars can be worn in multiple directions and the set is just one of many statement pieces from the versatile brand whose name was inspired by its founder Pamela Adewoyin's West African heritage.
The jewelry designer grew up in Lagos, Nigeria, and was enamored with the color and texture that local artists infused into their work. Now that she has her own handcrafted jewelry brand, Adewoyin has adopted a similar aesthetic for her collections.
Talk about a buzzworthy style! These cute bee earrings are equal parts dainty and delightful and are finished with a shiny brass. Carlene Browner and Cassandra Browner Richardson, two sisters from South Carolina, run the top-rated BR Design Co and are known for their polymer clay accessories.
Etsy shoppers rave about the brand's topnotch customer service and say these earrings look even better in person. "Elegant design and excellent quality. Shipping was speedy, even during the hectic holiday season, and my order came with a sweet handwritten note," one reviewer wrote.
If you prefer a more statement-making piece, these brass leaf earrings that are inspired by Africa's acacia trees are sure to impress. The textured design is accented with black beads and are handcrafted in Kenya.
The brand's multitalented namesake was inspired to start her line while working at a corporate job. "I really wanted people to see how versatile and unique and relevant African fabrics are. We can do so many things with them," she told Essence magazine during a Facebook chat last April. Now the brand includes hats, travel bags and jewelry.
After graduating from New York City's Fashion Institute of Technology, Alicia Goodwin channeled her metalwork skills into creating the Lingua Nigra jewelry collection. Drawing inspiration from the Victorian era and nature, Goodwin makes brass, silver and gold pieces like these tiny shell earrings, which have been showered with praise. "These earrings are absolutely stunning. The packaging was beautiful and I loved the little touches she added!!" one customer wrote. Another commented: "I had very high expectations, and they are even more amazing than I thought! I will definitively wear them very often!"
This bestseller from Omi Woods founder Ashley Alexis McFarlane was a finalist in Etsy's Design Awards, and it's easy to see why. The striking necklace has two cowrie shell pendants on a lengthy 40-inch chain that can be tied in multiple ways, and is available in sterling silver, gold vermeil and 14K solid gold. The brand sources its fair-trade gold from Africa.
McFarlane named her brand Omi Woods to honor her African and Jamaican heritage. “Omi" is a word that means "water" in the Yoruba language, while "woods” was chosen because “Jamaica” comes from the Taino word "Xaymaca,” which translates to "land of wood and water."
Love a pop of color? These vibrant crystal necklaces from Pure Feminine Energy founder Hazel Davis' Etsy shop are a bestseller. The hand-wrapped crystal pendants come in six colors and six finishes and have a convenient adjustable clasp.
Customers call the design "beautiful," "sturdy," "elegant" and "high quality." "I’ve purchased 4 necklaces so far and I love them all! My favorite is Amethyst wrapped in copper. No matter which combo you pick you won’t be disappointed," one happy shopper wrote.
Chari Cuthbert became a household name when former first lady Michelle Obama was spotted wearing one of her "VOTE" necklaces at the 2020 Democratic National Convention last August. The independent jewelry business, founded in 2012, makes each piece by hand in Los Angeles.
This delicate necklace spells out the word "Love" and has a sterling silver base with 14K yellow gold plating. Even better? By Chari donates $5 of every necklace sale to the Loveland Foundation, an organization that provides therapy support for girls and women of color.
Personalization always adds a sentimental touch to jewelry, and this initial necklace from Etsy shop The Pink Locket can fit up to three characters per pendant, which are hand stamped. Further personalize by choosing the pendant and chain metal – both come in either silver or gold.
Jamaican-born Kamilah Campbell started the Pink Locket in 2008 to inspire the minimalistic woman. The jewelry designer's creations are handmade in the U.S. and take inspiration from art, geometric shapes and city landscapes.
Canadian jewelry designer Jordan Clark describes her small-batch brass and silver creations as "handcrafted wearable art.” The Enarmoured founder was inspired by ancient armor for her designs and uses a mix of traditional and innovative jewelry-making techniques.
The collection's Shield brass necklace has a textured, shiny finish. The curved, triangular shape sits right at the collarbone and has won over plenty of Etsy customers. One reviewer wrote: "The shape and texture are beautiful and the chain length is perfect. This is a 'subtle statement' piece: it's beautiful and gets noticed, but it's not too flashy."
Bangles are a staple in any jewelry collection, and this one from ABA Jewels has a nice dose of texture that makes it stand out from the crowd. It's available in two sizes and three finishes - brass, sterling silver and 14K gold fill.
ABA Jewels founder Aja Butler-Burns started her metal jewelry and semi-precious crystal jewelry collection in 2013. Butler-Burns makes every piece herself and believes her jewelry has "the ability to uplift and add more good vibrations into the world."
Like several Black-owned jewelry brands, Jam + Rico incorporates cowrie shells into her designs. The distinctive shell has a long history in Africa, where for centuries it was used as a currency. Now, the brand's founder Lisette Scott uses them to pay homage to her grandmother.
"Bangles are special to me because my grandma who was born and raised in Jamaica wore bangles all the time. My fondest memories are of her cooking plantains and rice and peas and hearing her bangles jingle as she stirred the pot. I hope this bangle will bring back memories of loved ones and the Caribbean," the designer wrote on her website.
Scott donates 15 percent of every earrings or bangle purchase to the Global Fund's COVID-19 Response and HIV/Aids programs in sub-Saharan Africa.
Black, gold and yellow beads come together with hand painted Ankara trade beads to form this tribal bracelet. The affordable accessory measures 8 inches and is nice and stretchy so you won't have to worry about it fitting.
Ghana native Rita Akweley Agyemang is the designer behind Akweley Design. For her collections, she fuses fashion and tradition by using bold colors, patterns and designs, and makes use of a range of traditional beads to pay homage to her heritage.
Tasha Hussey, the founder of Esh Jewelry, is based in Atlanta, Georgia, and specializes in a mix of vintage, resin and semi-precious jewelry. The handmade collection features everything from bright and cheery earrings to colorful beaded bracelets and statement necklaces.
We've got our eyes on this personalized bracelet made of vintage white miriam haskell glass beads and gold-plated beads. The classy piece comes with a delicate gold letter attached to it, making it the perfect gift for the fashionista in your life.
Love to make a statement with your accessories? This bracelet can be customized with your choice of phrase and font preference. Available in brass or aluminum, the adjustable design is made to order.
Customers cite designer Hellen Twelede's customer-first focus as a selling point for the brand. Of course, they're also in love with the quality, gorgeous pieces in the brand's collection. "Just received my items and LOVE THEM, especially the bracelet! Thank you so much for your artistry. Will be ordering other items in the future!" one shopper wrote.
For more stories like this, check out:
- 15 Black-owned hair, makeup and skin care products we're excited to try
- 32 books bestselling authors recommend to honor and celebrate Black history
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