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Build your ultimate capsule jewellery box: the 5 pieces of jewellery everyone should own

Good jewellery can transform an outfit , be it a dress that you’ve worn a thousand times or pair well-loved of jeans that cry out for a bit of sparkle. If you’re looking to create a capsule wardrobe (or should that be jewellery box?!) of key pieces to invest in that you’ll wear time and time again then read on for my suggestions on the 5 pieces of jewellery that everyone should own.

1) Simple everyday stud earrings

Simple, but chic stud earrings are the absolute backbone of any carefully curated jewellery box. These are the sort of earrings that you’ll reach for again and again because you know that they’ll go with everything else you own.

But simple doesn’t need to mean boring….far from it. Try choosing a classic style with a twist, something like the Meteorite stud earrings that come in both silver and gold plate are the perfect choice. They’re carved with soft facets which reflect the light and give them an unexpected sparkle. At just under 1cm across they’re beautifully understated and wearable, but if you’re after a smaller style you can try the mini meteorite stud earrings which are approximately 0.5cm diameter and also work just as well for a second or third piercing.

Another great option are my new Gold Opis stud earrings which look a little bit like minimalist golden rainbows don't you think?! These stepped semi circle earrings come in both gold plate and recycled silver with a soft polished finish.

I also love these dimpled 14K gold studs from Lily Flo Jewellery available on their website and also via Wolf & Badger. They're great if you're looking for an investment piece that will never go out of style.

Above: Gold Selene large hoop earrings and Gold Luna hoop earrings both from Elin Horgan Jewellery

2) Gold hoop earrings

Fast becoming a jewellery classic, the recent fashion for gold hoops is definitely here to stay. They are super easy to wear whilst also elevating your outfit and work equally as well for day or evening.

If you'renew to hoops and want something small, but still impactful then try the Small Luna hoop earrings or the Small Nova hoop earrings. These styles look great with shorter hair or with long hair pulled back from the face and both feature a detachable charm so that they can also be worn as a plain hoop should the mood take you!

I'm also currently obsessed with the Gold Vesta midi hoop earrings which are part of my new Arco collection. I have a pair of these which I wear pretty much everyday as they're so light and comfortable that you barely know you've got them in. You can also find the same design in a larger format as the Gold Selene large hoop earrings which are approximately 3cm diameter, but still weigh only 5g each.

The Icarus medium hoop earrings from Cara Tonkin are a contemporary take on a plain hoop and the subtle texture and unusual shape makes them really eyecatching.

Current trends are for the mega hoop like these Thomas Sabo ones, but if you find this style too big for everyday wear then you might prefer my Calisto hoop earrings available in both gold and silver. Made from square section recycled silver wire, they’re fairly large, but also light and really comfortable to wear.

Above: Chunky charm bracelets in recycled silver and gold plated recycled silver both from Elin Horgan Jewellery

3) A chunky, slightly masculine bracelet

I just can’t get enough of a chunky(ish) masculine bracelet. This is the sort of style that you’ll get so much wear from that it will become a mainstay of your jewellery box.

One of my favourite designs is a classic ID bracelet which looks brilliant good paired with a vintage men’s watch. I'm also loving this Chunky charm bracelet, with the silver version my favourite at the moment, but both the silver and gold look great and are finished to a soft shine awith an adustable chain to suit most wrist widths.

Monica Vinader does a Linear chain bracelet which is slightly finer option in gold vermeil that would look great stacked with other pieces. This unusual Alex Monroe version available from Liberty is also a lovely take on this enduring style.

Above: Gold Meteorite necklace and Gold Rhea pendant both in gold plated recycled silver both from Elin Horgan Jewellery

4) Layering necklaces

Investing in a couple of lovely layering necklaces give you endless options for combining with other pieces for an instant outfit update. You can go dainty or a little chunkier, depending on your preference.

V By Laura Vann has a huge selection of gorgeous necklaces and I particularly like this Darcy gold necklace on a pretty figaro chain. I also love the delicate simplicity of my Meteorite necklace (there's a mini version available too) which works really well with the Rhea pendant in silver or gold, as show in the image above.

My top tip for layering success is to choose a mix of chain lengths and styles so that you don’t end up in a tangle! Smaller pieces can look great with a chunky chain and don’t be afraid to mix metals and wear silver and gold together.

5) A favourite signature or heirloom piece

Everyone has one of these, whether it’s a pair of showstopping earrings or a treasured signet ring. It’s that piece you turn to for an instant mood lift, the one that could make even a pair of trackie Bs look glamourous. For me, at the moment it’s a chunky silver faceted ring that I’m wearing constantly, but maybe yours is an heirloom necklace that your granny handed down to you, your engagement ring or a special gift from your kids. You know the one I’m talking about, right?!

I truly believe that choosing the right capsule pieces for your jewellery box can help to really simplify and enhance your style. Taking the time to find those key staples is so worthwhile because you’ll be investing in designs that you know you’ll get loads of wear from rather than panic buying something to go with an outfit that will rarely be worn again.

Elin Horgan designs and creates handmade jewellery in her Bristol studio. Elin’s beautifully simple handmade jewellery is carefully crafted and designed to be worn every day. You can read more about Elin’s work and the ethos behind her understated jewellery brand on her About Elin Horgan Jewellery page.

If you’d like to enquire about a specific product or discuss a custom piece of jewellery, please have a look at the Bespoke Handmade Jewellery page or email


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