Back to nature: Bug jewelry

Back to nature: Bug jewelry

Though this may come as a surprise, you won't be swatting away the bugs on your body this fall. Insect-inspired jewelry is a major trend this season, meaning the creepy crawlers on your ears, neck, wrist and fingers are intentional and don't worry – totally fake.

Who What Wear reported that Alexander McQueen's recent collection featured chokers adorned with bumblebees, while Lanvin runway models were rocking enormous winged insects on their sheer-shouldered dresses. The reason these pieces are becoming increasingly popular is that they have the potential to completely transform an outfit. Even a monochromatic ensemble is instantly more interesting when glittering bugs by fine jewelers are involved. If you're still not confident you can pull off the look, read on for some tips and ideas.

Bee playful
There's no better way to add some playfulness to an otherwise stuffy or just plain boring outfit than with some bug baubles. For example, a matching tweed pencil skirt and blazer might look dull without the right accessories. However, tack on a beetle brooch and you're bound to catch some attention. If you're trying to carry a sophisticated shift dress from work out to drinks, toss on a long dragonfly pendant necklace and it's instantly more fun. Or, if a little black dress is just a tad too sophisticated for a lunch date, a pair of sweet ladybug studs will make the outfit more whimsical and daytime-appropriate.

A cuff is enough
You don't have to go overboard when it comes to donning bug jewels – after all, you don't want to look like you've been swarmed. Sometimes a striking cuff bracelet is more than sufficient to incorporate the trend. A thick, ornate silver butterfly cuff is stunning with a black gown in the evening. If you're trying to add some edge to a dainty dress, try a slender gold bangle with one small spider. The look is both gothic and elegant at the same time.

Don't fear the sparkle
Sometimes, ultra-glitzy jewelry can look over-the-top. However, insect shapes can help to tone down the supercharged glamor that inherently comes with crystals. The best way to sport a sparkly bug piece is by sticking to something small. A gem-studded beetle ring is chic but not in an extravagant way, so you can easily wear it with a boyfriend tee and skinny jeans. It's also an unexpected way to jazz up a simple sweater dress.

Make a statement
With an off-beat trend like this one, it's sometimes best to go big or go home. If you're feeling bold, try a colorful statement necklace. With beads and gems in rich hues like cobalt, emerald, fuchsia and violet, your insect accessories will look downright dazzling. Who knew bugs could be beautiful?

If you are brave enough to don one of these pieces, though, keep the rest of your jewelry to a minimum so as not to look garish. A delicate pair of metal or crystal studs can provide the perfect compliment to your statement necklace.

Consider contrast
Don't be afraid to layer other jewelry with these pieces. If you're ever concerned that your insect jewelry will look silly, just add contrasting classics. For example, a strand of pearls can offset the quirkiness of a bug locket. Mixing in a stack of plain gold bangles, which never go out of style, is another great way to make a beetle-adorned bracelet more wearable. As a general rule, it's best to keep your creepy crawlers to a minimum. When you're sporting one onyx spider ring amidst other understated jewels, it's going to stand out a lot more.