My grandmother was a jeweler so you'd think I'd have inherited some beautiful pieces. Alas, being in the trade, she knew fine jewelry to be a poor investment and selected to spend her money on clothing and stocks. Her fine pieces included her engagement ring (now worn by my wonderful sister-in-law), watches (I have one delicate gold one that I am too scared to wear), and a few pins and gold/silver evening bags that live in the bank. I knew fine jewelry was a poor investment. I also love it and can't afford it, so I think I just decided this was too much to consider and gave up.
Cindy opened my eyes to other options, like Poupette's rings and chains (www.poupettenyc.com). I don't have the most beautiful hands, but Gerry makes a beautiful looped G ring and I'm going to invest in the silver which has a beautiful sparkly finish. I'm tempted to go for the rose gold (my favorite gold) but the silver looked so great against my skin.
Along with Marti, Cindy also introduced me to J. Crew's costume jewelry. We went in yesterday and my window shopping translated into a real haul. I got the following pieces--a gold look chain bracelet with hanging circle/open square charms studded with rhinestones on one side (the 1950s/60s charm bracelet look I so love), a pair of rhinestone earrings in a clear crystal (the ones pictured below, but in the clear color--they are sold out online), and a double rope of clear rhinestones tied up with a black grosgrain ribbon.
They make me feel pretty, refract light to my face and will work with anything. Cindy bought two amazing statement necklaces with big rhinestone crystals--her eye is flawless for accessories as well as clothing.