Do the English, Europeans and Scandinavians find bling vulgar?

(147 Posts)
bunnymother Mon 10-Feb-14 13:44:09

Here's a nice, tasteful question for you... grin

I saw the other thread asking about the value of people's wedding, engagement and eternity rings, and it got me thinking that quite often I notice big diamonds on American and, to a lesser extent, Australian women, but not so much on English, European and Scandinavian women. The people I am thinking of are all high earners (or married to), so its not to do with money. I am assuming its to do with taste/preference?

MrsBennetsEldest Mon 10-Feb-14 14:53:59

Bunny, diamonds come in different colours and clarity is not judged by the naked

Onesleeptillwembley Mon 10-Feb-14 15:00:41

Clarity can be judged by the naked eye in poor clarity diamonds. And colour (certainly yellow) is not good unless its of enough strength and uniformity to be judged a 'special'.

luvfizz Mon 10-Feb-14 15:00:43

I love diamonds and have a nice sized one on my wedding finger surrounded by little pink diamonds on the band and I'm not British. I fit well into your assumption!

bunnymother Mon 10-Feb-14 15:02:26

I understood Kim K's diamond was meant to be white, and it was yellowish to the naked eye. Not canary yellow, just off-white (especially compared to the side diamonds) - I was quite suprised. It is possible to see flaws in diamonds with the naked eye, too (I've seen some), and, obviously, some require the lens.

bunnymother Mon 10-Feb-14 15:02:59

Cross post w Wembley

Onesleeptillwembley Mon 10-Feb-14 15:04:16

Great (informed) minds, bunny. wink

bunnymother Mon 10-Feb-14 15:05:57

Am chuckling as I type. I really need to do something more productive than speculate on Kim K's diamond!!

burnishedsilver Mon 10-Feb-14 15:06:47

I think Kim kardasian had a champagne diamond. It's supposed to be that colour. They are more expensive than a regular diamond.

I'm not a fan on bling. I'd much rather a chunky piece of silver. Dhs Aussie family are dripping in very old fashioned showey jewlery.

Onesleeptillwembley Mon 10-Feb-14 15:10:48

'Champagne' diamonds can also be a lot cheaper than white diamonds. It just depends on the total quality. Some that are marketed as such are basically just murky coloured diamonds. Also it depends on if they've been treated or are natural. There's so many variables in a stone.

Degustibusnonestdisputandem Mon 10-Feb-14 15:12:10

I'm Australian and definitely don't like bling.

ThomasLynn Mon 10-Feb-14 15:12:52

Looking in the jewellery catalogues delivered today (I'm in Perth) I'd say there's a definite trend towards the blingy. Not so much giant solitaires but 19 or 20 little diamonds all clustered around a larger diamond in two or three tiers. Often square cut, too.

I don't like square cut stones. Or bling. Or tiered stones.

Lucky I'm not hunting for an engagement ring grin

Bonsoir Mon 10-Feb-14 15:15:12

Bling is definitely considered vulgar in Paris. Discretion is all-important here. Austere Catholic tastes are still preponderant.

MrsBennetsEldest Mon 10-Feb-14 15:17:46

Well I doubt any of us would get close enough to KK to be able to judge the clarity of her ring [ sounds wrong ].

Hardly think it was bought in Samuels though.

bunnymother Mon 10-Feb-14 15:21:59

It was from Lorraine Schwartz. I think she provides a bit of kardashian jewellery? [why oh why do I even know that?!?!].

Right, off to the school run, still can't believe I am talking about the kardashians [shaking my head at myself]

hogsandkisses Mon 10-Feb-14 15:22:49

I am Swedish and don't like bling. grin

Most married Swedes I know have one engagement ring and one wedding ring each (both husband and wife). Usually both are plain wedding bands, but sometimes the wedding band has smaller diamonds.

A blingy ring on a woman makes me think of a traditional American housewife. For me personally, it is very important to be seen as my own person rather than someone's wife, so I would avoid it for that reason. I'm not saying you can't be your own person if you live in a traditional marriage, but it's definitely not the life I want and I'm sure that's at least in part because of where I'm from.

And also I would be terrified of losing it. shock

Fantasyfootballfan Mon 10-Feb-14 15:25:25

I could do a big rock of an engagement ring without too much effort if anyone wanted to try me. Most of my friends have fairly significant jewellery, especially those who were married in their 30's. Generally 1-2.5 carat engagement rings, diamond wedding band, diamond studs of around 0.75 - 1ct each and a nice watch cartier / ebel / rolex / omega. They all dress pretty low key Gap / primark / top shop / new look so it doesn't look flashy or over the top at all.

burnishedsilver Mon 10-Feb-14 15:27:17

mrsbennett at the rate she's going, its only a matter of time til she posts a selfie of her ring so that people can see the clarity for themselves wink

MrsBucketxx Mon 10-Feb-14 15:35:58

Id love a mahoosive diamond, maybe that makes me a bit trashy blush

MrsPear Mon 10-Feb-14 15:38:32

From what i have seen from my husband's family the northern Albanians love the bling. I am surprised they can move ... think dinner plate watches, rope necklaces, big engagement and wedding rings all yellow gold. In fact his mum had a go at hubby for being cheap ... no i really wanted subtle white gold. But i think it is seen as some kind of dowry as the groom to be presents to bride to be (both families present) her wedding jewels - usually rings, watch, necklace, bracelet and earrings. The groom usually gets a watch and ring. They are constantly saving for weddings and funerals.

MrsPear Mon 10-Feb-14 15:41:21

Oh and as an English woman i do find my fellow English countrymen vulgar with this amount of jewelry but i keep lips tightly shut when it comes to dh's family as they are a different culture. Interestingly we can't find a translation of the word vulgar into Albanian.

RockMummy Mon 10-Feb-14 15:42:57

I think it's a combination of Lutheran/puritan ethic which is strong in this country and the post war austerity which shapes much of the UK's mistrust of bling. Younger people who are less influenced by those values seem to subscribe more to bling than older people.
Alternatively it may be that older people have other things to do with their money!

BecauseIsaidS0 Mon 10-Feb-14 15:58:24

I work in London but travel to our midtown NY office frequently. Overwhelmingly, women in NY go for bigger is better, and will prefer a huge rock of lesser quality, even if the flaws are visible to the naked eye. In London I see smaller diamonds although I work in the City so they still tend to be sizeable.

FrugalFashionista Mon 10-Feb-14 15:58:53

I didn't want to sound worthy, just portray the mindset back home. We have a long tradition in it, churches were painted white during Reformation to cover up sinful bling, and there are lots of proverbs to remind that only the ugly need embellishments.

Even if you spend a fortune on designer clothes, they should be as sleek and simple as possible, think Acne or Jil Sander or the Antwerp group. But something you found from the racks of the recycling center is cooler still, even among fashionistas wink

Curiously, here in Rome, I also see a lot of stylish restraint. If your wealth is very recent, you flaunt it. If you've been around for a while, you are extremely conservative and disciplined. Everything is handmade from highest grade materials, but there is no bling.

Apatite1 Mon 10-Feb-14 15:59:18

I'm south Asian so non one would blink an eye if I went around dripping in gold. However, I prefer diamonds and wear around 6-7 carats daily in rings, pendant and stud earrings. Only my engagement ring has a largeish diamond (though DH definitely didn't spend 3 months' pay or other marketing ploy rubbish) I have never gotten anything but positive comments, but even if I didn't, i don't dress based on other people's opinions so nothing would change. Mostly, people don't really care very much about jewellery. I dress modestly and wear glasses and no makeup and draw little attention overall.

My American friends tend to have bigger diamonds and they are all of excellent quality. The European ones prefer smaller ones. There is more variation within the countries than between them actually.

PrimalLass Mon 10-Feb-14 16:03:22

Yes, I find it vulgar. Although I'm Scottish not English or Scandinavian grin

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