Rapaport Magazine
Style & Design

Party like the '80s

Big and bold with lots of gold, jewelry modeled on this most rad of decades is all the rage.

By Rachel Taylor

Image background: Shutterstock

For some, the 1980s were notable for notorious fashion moments and dubious hairstyles. However, the bold, gold jewels of this era were a stellar chapter in jewelry history, and one that is much in demand now.

Fashion houses Chanel and Gucci have both released fine-jewelry collections that take inspiration from the decade, with the voluminous quilted gold jewels of Coco Crush and the genderless, geometric Gucci Link to Love line. Other brands have sought to recreate the heft of the era with curvaceous earrings, heavy chains and gem-centric statement rings.

At auction, demand for original ’80s jewels has also risen sharply, according to Violaine d’Astorg, head of jewelry at Christie’s France. She points to a gold and enamel Cartier zebra bracelet with diamonds and emeralds that was listed for EUR 15,000 ($19,800) in December but sold for more than EUR 81,000 ($106,920).

“Gold and diamond jewelry from the ’80s has long been a staple in the vintage market, and now that desire for bold, weighty jewelry is reflected in contemporary design,” affirms New York-based vintage dealer Jill Heller, who specializes in jewelry from that era. “The resurgence of this style comes from consumers’ need to see and feel what they’re investing in. The moment you encounter a piece of ’80s jewelry, there’s an unmistakable luxury to it that is hard to replicate.”

Jessie ThomasDiamond ring in 18-karat gold.


Campbell + CharlotteThe Edge Ferris Wheel ring in 14-karat gold with diamonds and multicolor sapphires.


Suzanne KalanEmerald and Tahitian pearl earrings in 18-karat gold.


Deborah Pagani Bespoke diamond Honey band in 18-karat gold.


Emily P WheelerTwinkle Wrap tubogas bracelet in 18-karat gold with enamel, diamonds and morganite.


Robinson PelhamStrike earrings in 14-karat gold with tsavorites and sapphires.


VENDORAFA Dune cuff bracelet in 18-karat hammered gold with diamonds.


Article from the Rapaport Magazine - May 2022. To subscribe click here.