Shop Talk

SHOP TALK: Wearable art at L.A. Pai

Shop Talk is written by OM senior editor Dayanti Karunaratne and Sarah Fischer, OM account executive and fashion maven.

The statement necklace — a bold, often outlandish piece of jewellery that commands attention and screams confidence — has taken the fashion world by storm. More ‘wearable art’ than accessory, the trend gives sculptors, crafters, and other artists a new backdrop for their creations. From political statements to retro throwbacks to fine folk craft, the styles are wide-ranging and can easily transform an outfit.

One of the city’s premier sources for this type of wearable art is L.A. Pai Gallery. Entering a new decade with a new name, the ByWard Market boutique is a treasure trove of handmade works. And while there’s always lots of curious baubles in store, this week the gallery hosts its annual National Jewellery Student Competition Exhibition.

With work from emerging artists across the country on display, we thought it was high time we played (virtual) dress-up.

8th Annual Jewellery Student Competition Exhibition. June 23 – July 13. L.A. Pai Gallery, 13 Murray St. www.lapaigallery.com

Item: Champagne Squishee Affair by Amanda Memme, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (left)

Wear this one with a long chain necklace of the same gold colour or gold/silver combo, either a necklace that has many hanging layers or one with a simple charm at the end of the long chain — to place the objet d’art right above the bellybutton.
Keep it simple when in comes to clothing: a white or cream shirt and a dark pencil skirt.

Item: Choker by Anne-Sophie Vallee (below)

Find a simple silver ring and some hoop earrings to match the colour and texture of this funky piece. As for clothing, a fitted shirt with a scoop neck in a solid blue colour — light blue or cobalt, perhaps?

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