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Things you should know before you buy fine jewellery for a woman

By LLM Reporters on 22nd April 2016

Buying luxury jewellery for a lady can be a daunting excerise and one that usually ends in disaster. With this in mind we’ve enlisted the help of Patti Worth, a fine jewellery consultant and stylist based in London, to ensure you purchase the perfect piece.

If you are wise enough to decide to buy a lady a piece of jewellery as a gift then congratulations, you have successfully jumped the first hurdle. But men, be aware, buying a piece of jewellery for a woman can be a terrifying and time consuming experience. Like her clothes and shoes, her jewellery speaks to her personal tastes, which is why it can be so difficult to get it right. Don’t spend your time searching in all the wrong places in the hope that the lady in your life will love the jewellery, only to be presented with unsubtle looks of dismay when she opens the non perfect gift. Sometimes a little direction can help, so here is a guide to buying jewellery for a woman.

Alison Lou
Alison Lou’s jewellery is inspired by her hometown of NYC and its rich culture

1. Take note of what she already has.

If your partner wears a lot of yellow gold, do not buy her a white gold necklace. Many women wear certain Golds to compliment their skin tones and whilst a yellow gold piece will look beautiful on a lady with Olive skin, it may not work as well on your English Rose. On that note at all costs, steer clear of silver. Silver is the D&G to the Dolce and Gabanna, and your woman should always be a Dolce.

If you want her to wear it, buy something that fits with her style and compliments what she already has. It’s important to remember that you are buying something she will like, not necessarily something that you would like to see her in. There is a trend currently in the jewellery world to layer your delicate jewels – more is more! Buy her something that she can stack with her other pieces. Many necklaces have adjustable chain lengths which means they can be worn together to sit at different levels on the chest.

2. When in doubt go simple
Perhaps the most important piece of advice is to keep it simple and keep it real. There is nothing worse than your beautiful rose gold ring fading to silver, having a stone pop out or worst case leaving your finger green. Never, buy a lady a piece of costume jewellery whilst attempting to pass it off as real.

Buying fine jewellery for a woman is one of the few times that keeping it simple is a key rule. My favourite piece is my classic Diane Kordas diamond teardrop ring (pictured) which I never take off and is undoubtedly one of the biggest hit gifts I’ve ever received. Stick to clean lines and shapes and don’t go too heavy or chunky if you are a first time gift buyer.

Diane Kordas
Diane Kordas prides herself on simple designs with a touch of modern glamour, making each piece unique and opulent.

3. Diamonds really are a girls best friend
When in doubt add Diamonds. If a designer or retailer asks you if you would like to see the piece with added diamonds, the answer is always yes. A piece of jewellery with added diamonds makes a lady feel more special and will give your gift more gravitas.

4. Go personal
Personal gifts show thoughtfulness, and women love that. Whether it’s a necklace with her initials or her astrology sign or a charm bracelet to add to over the years, something that she can wear as a part of her every day jewellery is sure to be a hit. I believe that every piece of jewellery should tell a story and personalised pieces do this best. One of my favourite designers; Alison Lou has created a collection of “Mrs initial” rings which are a great wedding or engagement gift, as is Solange Azagury Partridge’s “marry me” ring or Jessica McCormack’s love letter rings which revive a Victorian trend of spelling out words in gemstones (D for diamond, E for emerald etc)

Buying fine jewellery for a woman is one of the few times that keeping it simple is a key rule

5. Something special
If you are buying a piece for a special occasion and want something more special than a pave diamond ring then it could be time to turn to the one of a kind and unique pieces . Of course, no girl would turn down a Cartier love bracelet or a Van Cleef necklace but there is something special about receiving a piece of jewellery that no one else has to make her friends green with envy.

One of the top designers for incredible craftsmanship and jaw dropping stones is Brazillian designer Ara Vartanian. He is a master of coloured stones and I am yet to meet a woman not to fall in love with his pieces. Other designers which are certain to be a hit are Monique Pean whose designs are crafted out of fossilized mammoth and scattered with diamonds, Messika for some statement Diamonds and Pippa Small for her ethically sourced uncut wonders.

6. Rings
This is important. Don’t buy her a ring if you aren’t going down on one knee or haven’t done already. This presents way to many mixed messages and your chances of the gift backfiring or potentially turning into an unwanted conversation are high. Of course jewellery should be a gift that works for any occasion, but if that occasion is pre engagement, try to steer clear of a ring.

Patti Worth is a fine jewellery consultant and stylist based in London. She takes pleasure in helping clients find the perfect piece, whether it is for themselves or a gift. You can contact her at or find her on Instagram @pattiworthfinejewellery