Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Hoop earrings - yay or nay?

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?


  1. oh, most definitely yes if the right styling is in place. I think it's a fine line before the looks become chavvy but get it right and they can look fab.

  2. Along with animal print and wooden heeled shoes, I've always had issues with hoop earrings but those two from econe are simply lovely.

    I agree, econe is a great place for a quirky pressie!

  3. i wear my hoops constantly!!! i have them in both gold and silver...couldn't live without either pair. i have to agree that i wouldn't invest a TON in them, but after going a number of years replacing cheap-o gold hoops, then finally getting a pair of real gold hoops from my parents for christmas a few years back, i can see it probably would have made more sense to initially hand over the $100 - $150 than to keep buying pairs of $10 hoops that would lose their gold tone after a few wears.

  4. Oh yes! I have two pairs - small hoops and ginormous hoops both Wright & Teague, like you I've had them for years and still wear them. The big ones not so much, but now I've seen Garance I'm going to get them out again.

  5. Haha! What have I started!

    Well I'm completely honoured that you dedicated a post to my question. I had a hunch your answer would be thorough, surprising, and ultimately very useful, and I was right.

    Of course I considered making some myself but I need them for this weekend and I've got a crazy busy week (14 Hog heads and boxing up two Labradors for Jersey). I am tempted to give it a try though, so maybe I could put the hoops on hold for an Xmas project, you might have convinced me.

  6. l-o-v-e those disco ball hoops! good choice! & i'm so glad i found your blog - cute stuff*

  7. Move aside, Hadley Freeman!


  8. I quite like the slightly chaffy touch of hoop earrings. But they mustn't be too big, otherwise they always get tangled. Nice choices.

  9. I'm not a fan, i have to admit. but then i'm hardly a shining beacon of fashion icon-ism.

  10. hoops are like anything classic- it's a question of taste. i think very fine/ delicate small hoops are extremely classic and therefore stylish. I like some of Alex Monroe's too but they are more intricate and less plain. Your suggestions are lovely and fun!

  11. I have to admit that I (rather boringly) wear my silver hoops every day. They are comfortable and for some reason I find they really flatter the face. I feel weird without mine. Although I have some lovely hammered Wright & Teague ones, my day-to-day pair are from a stall at London Bridge Station. Who sad I wasn't classy?

  12. Silver hoops for the win.

    Gold hoops all kinds of wrong.

    Oh, and thin, unadulterated hoops only, not patterned or disco-balled please.

    And I wonder why I am not a style icon. (Although did get my engagement ring from EC one so it has a special place in my heart and has hopefully upped my street cred.)

    Good luck Barry.

  13. Love the disco ball ones! I used to wear hoops when I had longer hair - but they don't seem to work now I have shorter hair... not sure why!

  14. Gorgeous! I don't really suit hoops, but thanks for the econe tip, much jewellery inspiration x

  15. I love all the hoops you featured but I think the simple hammered one's are so overpriced at 60 pounds! Because it say's that they are only 'gold plated'.

    If you go to somewhere like Etsy.com, you can find lots of similar hoops made of 14k gold fill (far better quality but not as expensive as solid 14k gold), for a lot less than 60GBP....and you'd be supporting handmade designers.

    I grew up in London before moving to the US and now just believe that Brit's pay double or triple for everything!