In my comments yesterday my friend Barry asked me this question:
"As a little present for my girlfriend I wanted to get her some large-ish hoop earrings. I've always thought they were a bit of a design classic and she hasn't got any. Simple, gold or silver, just a perfect circle. So I have two questions - for you and even your readers...
Are they still seen as a good thing (not too chavvy?) And - more importantly - where's the best place (in London) to get some?"
Cute, eh? So. The hoop earring went through a big resurgence in the last ten or so years and was seen as a bit hip hop and a bit street. I personally have always loved them and, as my style barometer, I look to Garance Doré, seen here last year having a fashion moment with Dolce & Gabbana and still rocking her hoops. So I say yes. Hoops for the win!
My favourite simple hoops are from EC One, which has long been my favourite London jewellery shop. Just last month I sent a coworker there for his wife's birthday and he returned very pleased, job done. They stock designers whose pieces are quirky and individual but well made and range from the reasonably priced to the blingingly priced. I can completely recommend their hoops, which are expensive but finely hammered, have a pretty catch and look every penny their £30-60 price tag. I've worn mine for years so they've definitely paid for themselves.
(If you have more to spare, check out these awesome studded hoops by Steven Webster. And, hold me closer tiny dancer, CHECK OUT THESE DISCO BALL HOOPS! )
Sorry, lost it for a second there. Another thing to consider is that, disco balls and studs aside, hoops are the kind of thing that are so simple that it is not worth investing a chunk of cash on them. First up, Barry is an artist who works with wire. Dude - why don't you just buy some silver / gold wire and make her some? Hello, am I a genius or what? (Check out his work here - the Michelangelo of chicken wire!)
Failing that, they're the kind of thing you can pick up on a street stall for between £10-20. But... the EC One hoops look expensive and come in a pretty box. A conundrum. Let us know what you decide! Are you all still wearing your hoops, ladies?