gmhTODAY Summer 2022 | Page 74

Karen La Corte
Karen is an etiquette and manners expert certified by the Emily Post Institute in Vermont . She is the incoming board president of the Gilroy Foundation , and supports several community non-profit organizations . Send your questions to : karen @ marxtowing . com

Your Life , Your STYLE

The Brooch is Back !

A brooch is a statement about a person without the need to say a single word and can promote conversation like no other piece of jewelry . It is a little fashion window to our soul , our character , our personality , and our unique style . Each brooch can tell a very personal story .

Add a vintage brooch to your collection by shopping at antique stores or dazzle your wardrobe with a newer one , such as those found in the jewelry section of stores like Nordstroms and Macy ’ s . Brooches can be worn on lapels , the upper left corner of a dress or sweater , on a pocket , at the waist , or by the neck or shoulder . They can also appear on purses , hair , shoes , backpacks , hats , scarves , and shawls ! A brooch can give life to an outfit . They are beautiful pieces of art – a touch of elegance and class .
Famous folks love a good brooch too ; it was former Secretary of State Madeline Albright ’ s signature piece . She even wrote a book about it called “ Read My Pins .” This dynamic woman once wore a giant bug brooch after Russians were caught eavesdropping on the State Department . Well-known crooner Lady Gaga wore a dove carrying an olive branch at President Biden ’ s Inauguration , a statement about making peace with each other . And then there is “ Jill ’ s Pins ” by Jill Wine-Banks . Jill is the first woman to hold the position of U . S . General Counsel of the Army and uses her witty brooches to express her progressive politics .
I have a special brooch , too ; my mother ’ s Sarah Coventry Vintage Silvery Sunburst Pinwheel Brooch with the pearl in the middle , from the 1960 ’ s . Sarah Coventry is recognized as the oldest direct selling jewelry company in the world .
I ’ ve also got a vintage Victorian frog brooch , a whimsical piece in my mother ’ s collection . When I wear my mothers ’ brooches , I feel close to her . They keep her memory alive .
Lastly , if you think that brooches are only for women , men are picking up the trend too . Fashion designer Alexander McQueen has designed men ’ s suits with brooches sewn onto lapels . It ’ s never too late to hop on a trend !
Carol Peters took pictures of three of her favorite brooches . The rose by Nolan Miller is so dimensional and large that it is great for a pop of color on a dark outfit .
The calla lily , also by Nolan Miller , is very large and dimensional . This is Carol ’ s favorite flower because it is a survivor – strong , elegant , and beautiful . Carol has calla lilies in stained glass and many pictures in her home .
The Valentino bow with pearl is also large and . Carol usually wears the Valentino brooch on her shoulder alongside a string of pearls . The drop pearl moves , and it is very retro and lovely .
My husband ’ s cousins Malene Evans and Louise LaCorte decided to use their mother ’ s collection of brooches to create these gorgeous jewelry art pieces . Gluing them down was the hardest but they are beautiful framed . This is a good project for those of you who like to craft and want to do something with brooches that you aren ’ t wearing anymore or that have been passed down . When my daughter Vanessa got married , we incorporated five family rhinestone brooches in her floral bouquet . It was spectacular . Brooches from relatives both living and deceased were inter-mixed with the roses and gardenias . The bouquet screamed romance and nostalgia at the same time .
Now , I know you ’ re wondering when I ’ m going to get to my favorite thing : leopard design ! My leopard brooch attaches to my shoulder with the head facing down the front of my jacket or dress . I have matching earrings and a bracelet . It ’ s one of my favorites .
74 SUMMER 2022 gmhTODAY Magazine gmhtoday . com