Are Heart Necklaces Tacky?
A decade ago, most heart-shaped jewelry was sold in the form of cutesy gifts peddled out of tacky stores. And then there was the Tiffany heart necklace that was done to a murderous death. Tacky indeed. Back then, many of my clients had no issue when I asked them to donate their heart-shaped jewelry during their closet purge. Some, however, were bummed out by a life without hearts. To them, I said, “Chin up, my friend. My fashion rule that trumps all other fashion advice is this: if you love it, we’ll make it work.”
For those clients, I always kept an eye out for modern heart-shaped jewelry. In my journey, I started to find the most perfect pieces. As the search continued, I personally started to fall in love with heart necklaces, heart earrings, heart printed skirts — you name it. I must admit though, I have always fancied heart-shaped sunglasses thanks to Drew Barrymore in the film Boys On The Side, but now I am a super fan of almost all things hearts. And what a time to be. There is so much fresh, aka non-tacky, heart-shaped jewelry now.
I am especially enamored with chic heart jewelry at the moment having just returned from San Miguel de Allende, the “heart of Mexico.” This magical city is reminiscent of Bruges and is only a couple hours from Mexico City. There were so many gorgeous boutiques selling heart-shaped necklaces. I was so overwhelmed by the extensive selection I couldn’t even purchase one. When I came back home, I decided to seek out the perfect heart-shaped necklace as a memory of the trip — and just in time for Valentine’s Day.
In short, there are plenty of tacky heart necklaces available, but there are also chic, fresh, and innovative options, which I have collected for us below. But before we get to that, let’s talk more about how to avoid a tacky look with heart-shaped jewelry…
The No-No’s of Heart-Shaped Jewelry
Below I have listed examples of tacky heart-shaped jewelry. They are tired shapes and styles we have seen produced ad nauseam since the early 80s. They have no interesting details and the proportions between the chain and the heart are off. There is nothing fresh about them. These are the tacky heart necklaces everyone is thinking of when they Google “Are heart necklaces tacky?” which we found out is indeed a popular search when we started creating this post.
- Bloomingdale’s Diamond Heart Pendant Necklace in 14K Yellow Gold
- Lauren Hope (This is just a tacky design, period.)
Since we are on the topic of what not to wear, there are also some fashion tips I would like to share with you once you find your perfect modern, heart-shaped jewelry. Even if you have selected an innovative heart-shaped piece from below, there are some outfit pairings I would like you to avoid with them. Here is what NOT to wear with any heart-shaped jewelry:
- Baby doll dresses
- Overly feminine dresses
- Empire waist top or dress
Are you sensing a theme? Basically, you want to avoid anything too girly with this hyper-fem jewelry. We want to create more of a juxtaposition of style when sporting heart-shaped jewelry.
How To Wear Heart Shaped Jewelry
As I mentioned, heart-shaped jewelry can easily get too young or too cute. To prevent this cutesy look, pair your heart-shaped jewelry with androgynous pieces, like a suit. I also love heart shaped jewelry with sleek, sophisticated pieces like a blazer dress, casual suit, or the black jumpsuit I’m wearing in the picture at the top. And you can’t go wrong pairing heart-shaped earrings or a bracelet with a t-shirt and jeans.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, pair your hearts with outrageous or bold pieces for a maximalism look. If you are a long-time follower of Ulla Johnson’s Instagram account, you’ve seen her rock her Foundrae heart necklace with the most stunning bold pieces for such a spectacular look. I dare say, she single-handedly brought heart jewelry into fashion-forward territory, but I will stop rambling. Below is the best heart jewelry, from unique heart necklaces to chic heart earrings and bracelets that I am LOVING.
Lana Jewelry Mini Heart Pendant Necklace
This chic heart shaped necklace is available at Saks Fifth Avenue.
Etsy Handmade Heart Hoop Drop Earring
These handmade heart shaped earrings are available on Etsy.
Julie Vos Esme Heart Bracelet
Kendra Scott Haven Heart Front to Back Hoop Earrings
Foundrae Custom Heart Love Token Story
This unique heart shaped necklace is available at Foundrae.
Bloomingdale’s 14K Gold Medium Heart Stud Earrings
These polished heart shaped earrings are available at Bloomingdale’s.
Meira T 14K White & Yellow Gold Diamond & Sapphire Heart & Evil Eye Charm Necklace
This heart shaped necklace is available at Bloomingdale’s.
Ink + Alloy Juliet Falling Hearts Earrings Brass
These charming heart shape dangle earrings are available at Ink + Alloy.
BaubleBar Sheri Earrings
This pair of gold heart shaped earrings is available at BaubleBar.
Bloomingdale’s Black & White Diamond Heart Pendant Necklace
This unique heart shaped necklace is available at Bloomingdale’s.
Shein Color Block Heart Drop Earrings
These color block heart shaped earrings are available on Shein.
Argento Vivo Heart Cuff Bracelet
This heart cuff bracelet is available at Bloomingdale’s. Pair it with gold hoops or a gold bar necklace. Do not pair with other heart-shaped jewelry pieces.
Sizing Tip: It will work on most wrist sizes since you can squeeze it shut and stretch it open.
Bloomingdale’s Pavé Diamond Heart Pendant Necklace
This diamond heart shaped necklace is available at Bloomingdale’s.
Ink + Alloy Christina Ombre Earrings Hot Pink
These cute heart shaped earrings are available at Ink + Alloy.
Stylish Heart-Shaped Jewelry From Years Past
I originally wrote this post in 2011. I’ve left these photos below for nostalgic purposes. Whenever I update older posts I love to hold on to a collection of images as a bit of a time capsule.
Argento Vivo Heart Y-Necklace Gold
Brinker & Eliza 24K Gold-Plated Heart Medallion Necklace
Ink + Alloy Laura Heart Earrings
Moon & Meadow 14K Yellow Gold Diamond & Enamel Heart Pendant Necklace, 18″
This yellow gold heart shaped necklace is available at Bloomingdale’s.
Moon & Meadow 14K Yellow Gold Heart Disc Pendant Necklace, 17″
This heart shaped pendant necklace is available at Bloomingdale’s.
Chanel Vintage Necklace
An old-school Chanel ’93 CC Heart Necklace. This one has three strikes against it: branding, heart-shaped, and expensive — yet, it is still fabulous. You can get vintage Chanel on Farfetch, eBay, and The RealReal.