Fashion is ever changing and not remaining in one place for too long. It’s a rare thing when something stays on trend for longer than a season or two but when it does then you know that it’s probably one worth participating in. The stackable ring trend is one of those long lasting trends, and I am SO happy about that. People are still showcasing their stacked rings on multiple Pinterest boards, blog posts, and in magazine articles. 2016’s trend of stackable rings is not going anywhere in 2017.
Ring Stacking How-to:
Try starting with a delicate and/or sparkly ring as the foundation? But don’t stop there, Alef Bet Jewelry offers a wide variety of rings that are perfect options for the stackable ring trend. From high-end to low, stackable rings are making their mark. Many fashion experts suggest an anything-goes mentality that employs a selection of varying sizes, shapes and colors. While another advises choosing one metal (gold, rose gold, silver or platinum) or one color and then playing with textures. But I believe you the only rule is – there are no rules! This is fashion and fashion should express you and your beautiful personality! So no matter how you stack, strive for a cohesive look that makes you feel good.
The choker necklace is one of Fall 2016’s biggest trends.
They were key accessories in the nineties, and they are making a comeback alongside backpacks, bandanas, bombers and cropped tops. Some of the world’s supermodels, like Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid, have rocked these necklaces in every way, whether at the Met Ball or walking the streets of LA.
Not only are they super chic but can be worn any way.
Chokers are the perfect accessory and a stand-out piece to include in any outfit. Now, a great outfit in itself can go a long way, the best thing you can do for any outfit is spice it up with a good accessory. You see, it makes a statement. The best way, of course, is to try a trend and decide for yourself if it works for you. Here are some ways we have paired our chokers:
You can see these online here. As always, Alef Bet’s designs come with a full money back guarantee. We’d love to see how you decide to wear this trend. Let us know on Instagram!
When we look at our hands, we can’t help but remember one of the most beautiful lines from the Book of Isaiah, where the speaker is feeling neglected and forgotten by the Almighty. The Almighty responds that it would be easier for a mother to forget the growing child in her womb than for Him to “forget” Zion, adding rather fiercely, “I have carved you in the palm of my hand.” Looking down into the creases of our own hands with this passage in mind, especially if we’re feeling a bit lost, can be a comforting meditation.
Much of the beauty of Judaism is its sense of Mystery. We’ve all heard that expression, “The Lord moveth in mysterious ways.” So true.
As you know from reading our blog, one of our favorite icons of Judaica is the Hamsa, the protective hand. And our “TINY HAMSA CZ” series of necklaces and bracelets is among our most alluring and meaningful.
This design is not the straightforward Hamsa, or stylized protective hand, which appears in many of our most popular pieces, though we love those, too. The “Hidden Hamsa” pattern looks like a delicate, dainty, floral filigree abstract, punctuated with a tiny gem. We offer this design in several different iterations—silver, gold-dipped, on leather, or on a fine chain. (Check out our items Hidwn, hid4, hidn3, hidhn1.)
The fact that the protective hands are “hidden” from plain sight is
intriguing. Perhaps a reminder that even when we can’t see the actions of the
Almighty, we are always in good hands.
CAPTION : On the subject of hands, here is a drawing of the traditional Priestly Blessing of Aaron. Occasionally, one sees this esoteric image carved into the entryway of
Temples. The interpretation of the characters and the mathematical meaning of
the numerical sections of the drawing could cross a Rabbi’s eyes. Suffice to
say, the name of G-d, and the word “Koach”, or strength (derived from the Hebrew number for 28, since the hands are divided into 28 sections), are the
What is it about the red thread, worn around the wrist?
Speaking from the Judaica perspective, we call this simple, traditional bracelet a bendel. Our “red thread” bracelets, accented with a tiny charm (protective eye, star, hamsa), are one of our most popular items.
With the popularity of Kabbalah studies on the rise these days, these red threads are everywhere. The Book of Splendor (Zohar) tells us that the red thread invokes the protective power of the matriarch Rachel, who guards the wearer like her own child. Speaking as two generations of Jewish mothers (and descended from many more), trust us—this is a very good thing.
But here’s a mind-blower. It’s not just a Jewish thing…..while India is significantly east of our frame of reference, there is apparently a parallel Hindu tradition. In India, the red thread is called Mauli, Mouli, Kalava, Charadu, Nada Chadi, Raksha, Rakshi….and if I’m getting it wrong, sorry! These red threads, sometimes with jeweled charms, are knotted around the wrist in observance of puja, or ritual.
The Indian red thread may have a yellow bar-pattern, and is knotted around the wrist as part of many rituals. There is a special tradition, for instance, of brothers and sisters knotting the thread around each other’s wrists.
Depending upon who you ask, some Hindus say that wearing the thread signifies protection by the Mother Goddess Shakti. The general idea seems to be that you wear it until it naturally disintegrates or falls off.
Some discussions of the Hindu red thread say that it even turns to “gold”, although we’re taking this metaphorically, not literally. In many of our bendels, the red thread is woven through a gorgeous sterling chain-link bracelet. You just replace the red thread when it unravels. If your bracelet turns to gold, please call me personally!
“Legend has it that Lord Vishnu during his incarnation of Vamana tied a red thread on the hands of King Bali to grant him immortality and to rule the netherworld.
There is also a popular belief that the sanctified red thread with blessing of the deity protects a person from diseases, enemies and other dangers.”
A few years back,UK Prime Minister Tony Blair made headlines when he wore one which had been gifted to him by Swaminarayan Mandir at theHinduTemplein Neasden in Northwest London.
And not too long ago in The New York Times, we read about William Lauder, heir to the Estee Lauder empire and Lauder company chairman, wearing a red thread bracelet that he picked up at a Hindu shrine at Angkor Wat in Cambodia.
Good ideas know no boundaries! Wear your red thread bracelet, by any name, in good health!
We checked the statistics, and according to Brides Magazine, the US Census Bureau and other sources, June is still the month of choice for weddings in theUS. To this we say, “Mazel tov!”.
Typically, the bridal jewelry is a family heirloom or a really significant investment piece. This isn’t just a Jewish thing, by the way. When we travel and shop the world for our company, we’ve stood breathless in the presence of traditional Indian wedding jewelry sets (collar, bracelets, earrings, head-piece), for example, ornately rendered in 22 karat yellow gold, and swaying with ruby-drops. Now, THAT’s a fashion statement!
August, September and October also are popular months for stepping beneath the chuppa, tie the knot, jump the broom—choose your metaphor. Our collection includes many items which are ideal for the maid or matron of honor, bridesmaids, flower-girls, ring-bearer and groomsman. But the real hit this season for the bridal party is our new “Looking For…” series of “message” bracelets, ideal for the bridesmaid who is still on the matrimonial market!
These sterling silver chain accessories are sleek, modern, “ID”-style bracelets with a message-plate inscribed with the lady’s priority. The nameplate may read, “Looking for (Jewish) guy”, “Looking for (Smart) guy”, “Looking for (Nice) guy”, etc. The specific adjective of choice is set in gold-wash in the sterling plaque area.
What we love most about
these is that each word is accented by a cute little icon. For instance, “Jewish” is accented with a small Star of David. “Smart” is accented by a tiny illuminated light-bulb, for bright ideas. “Rich” (yes, we call this our “gold-digger bracelet!) is accented by a glittering bit of prong-set bling! And so on. We have a Christian version too, set with a small cross.
And, we offer an equivalent for the guy who’s still looking—his version has the same basic message-plate designs, reading “Looking for a (Rich) Girl”, etc., set on a manly leather band.
Looking for a Rich Guy
Looking for a Smart Guy Bracelet
So, let’s say you want it all in one package, and who doesn’t? Nice, smart, rich, etc.? It may take more than a bracelet to get it. But start by asking for exactly what you want.
One of our most popular jewelry motifs is the Hamsa, or protective hand. This icon is used as an amulet by many Middle Eastern people.
Of course, we see it created in silver, gold, bronze, diamonds, pewter, glass, as a personal ornament. I have also seen it woven into lush Turkish rugs, and painted on gorgeous
fountain-tiles in North Africa. As you know from previous blogs, especially in the desert, protection and well-being are linked symbolically to having easy access to water.
I have heard the Hamsa called the Hand of Miriam, as well as the Hand of Fatima, depending upon who wears it. I have seen it displayed with the fingers pointing up, and pointing down, although the fingers pointing down in my experience is more common.
Sometimes, as in our alluring “Middle Eastern Necklace” (our item # art-m), the hand and fingers are stylized to abstraction, though we know the protective powers are still there!
It’s intriguing to know that the icon of the hand extends beyond our immediate frame of cultural reference. “The Mano Poderosa”, or Hand of Power, is often portrayed in Latin Roman Catholicsacred art, especially religious art from Spain and Mexico.
And check this out: the Mudra (hand-position) of Protection, known to Hindus and Buddhists as the Abhaya
Mudra. Portrayals of the Buddha often depict his right hand in this sheltering, yet liberating gesture, which is often translated from the Sanskrit to mean “Fear not”.
Scholars say that Buddha first made
this gesture when he became enlightened. Prophets and saints of many other spiritual paths also are often depicted with their right hand in this position.
Coincidence? Doesn’t seem likely.
In any case, enjoy this universal symbol of protection from harm.