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How to Wear October’s Birthstone: Opal

How to Wear October’s Birthstone: Opal
October 9, 2016 Barbara Schwartz

A kaleidoscope of flashing colors described by some as volcanoes, galaxies, and fireworks, the opal is the birthstone for October. Throughout history, this gemstone has been admired because it encompasses the colors of other precious gems. For this reason, many have believed that the opal is magical and brings good fortune.

The Brooch

1468aThe iridescence of the opal – flashes of different colors show depending on the angle of viewing – is a characteristic that is difficult to reproduce in imitation stones. However, I think the remarkable maker Marcel Boucher has captured that quality beautifully in the art glass stone that is the center piece of this gorgeous 1950s leaf-shaped brooch. The center stone is surrounded by round faux diamonds (or diamanté), which, along with baguettes, also form the outline of the leaf. So how about adding some shimmer (and, perhaps, a bit of good fortune) to your wardrobe with this piece? I’ve styled it six different ways for several reasons: with its flashing and diamanté accents, this piece can be worn with a wide range of hues; brooches are the most versatile type of jewelry; and, for those who like to follow trends, brooches are a must-have accessory for 2016.

How to Wear It

1. Fasten this brooch at the v-neck of a wrap sweater. Not only will you hold it together (and preserve your modesty), but you’ll elevate this jeans-and-sweater outfit from casual to chic.


2. A lapel on a blazer cries out for adornment, and this brooch fits the bill. This pencil skirt and turtleneck sweater are navy, but you could achieve the same effect by wearing trousers or by choosing another dark neutral to contrast with the blue jacket.


3. A simple sheath in a neutral color (this one is dark green, a trendy shade for 2016), is a great backdrop for a jeweled accessory like this brooch. Wear it on your shoulder to become the focal point of your outfit. Add faux or real diamond studs for a bit more shine without competing with the main attraction. Simple, yet elegant shoes and bag quietly complete this ensemble.


4. Here’s another sheath in a dark neutral that will show off this Boucher brooch. Wear it at your neckline (in this case, a V-neck) or, for a more unusual approach, on the waistband. The light blue bag accents the flashes of blue in the opal.


5. A simple, oversized white shirt is transformed into something special when you fasten this brooch at the throat or, if it’s big enough, on the collar itself. Dress up a big shirt for the office with dark neutral trousers or a skirt. Add a mustard yellow bag (one of this season’s top 10 colors) to emphasize the yellow in the opal.


6. To emphasize your waistline, wear this brooch on a belt. Although this ensemble is for evening, with velvet trousers and evening shoes and clutch, you could achieve the same effect with a belt added to another type of top, pants, or skirt. If the belt has an ornamental buckle, move it to the back to give the brooch center stage.


For More Vintage Brooches

See the boutique’s collection of 1920s-1950s brooches here.

Comments (2)

  1. Patricia Gostick 6 years ago

    Super looks, as always!

    • Author
      Barbara Schwartz 6 years ago

      Thanks, Patricia!

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