Barbiecore & Mermaidcore Meet Vintage Jewelry

It’s the summer of fantasy fun, sequins, glitter and sparkle as Barbiecore and mermaidcore become the fashion microtrends of the moment, both of which seem to have some lasting power.  Both trends are glamorous and dazzling, while also bringing in some nostalgia from the past. So let’s take a look and see what these two trends are all about and how vintage jewelry fits in.

In the Pink with Barbiecore

Born in 1959, the plastic Mattel Barbie doll has had myriad careers through the years from astronaut to veterinarian and she’s been a style icon through it all. Now with the release of the “Barbie” movie, her style is making headlines around the world and Barbiecore is front and center. So what exactly is Barbiecore? As you may suspect or already know, it’s a lot of pink, especially hot pink; it’s pink layered on pink and the look is filled with polka-dots, gingham and other playful and nostalgic patterns as well as sequins, sparkle and platform shoes.

Barbiecore started about a year ago when the “Barbie” movie release date (July 21, 2023) was announced and trailers of the film’s star Margot Robbie, delightfully dressed in pink, began to circulate. That’s when the fun began and Barbie fans around the globe started to pick up on all things pink — dressing in head to toe hot pink. Fashion houses started getting in on the act and the official launch of the Barbiecore trend started with the Balmain x Barbie collection. It was soon followed by Valentino where pink dominated the runway. Of course we’ve seen celebs from Margot Robbie to Anne Hathaway, Florence Pugh, Lizzo and Cardi B., to name just a few driving the Barbiecore trend to new heights.

So what about the jewelry? There are a lot of options. Anything with a pink stone as the centerpiece is perfect. Pink tourmalines, pink sapphires, rose quartz and even the delicate pink of kunzite works for a jeweled Barbiecore look. Diamonds and pearls are also very Barbiecore. Bold gold is a good balance to large swaths of pink and a chunky gold bracelet or necklace is the perfect complement to Barbiecore. And of course big statement earrings are a beautiful finishing touch to any look. Barbie has been around since 1959 so any jewelry from the 1960s until now fits the theme.

Searching the Seas for Mermaidcore

Mermaidcore has already proven that it has longevity. Parisian fashion designer Marcel Rochas is credited with designing the first mermaid style evening gown, which is form fitting through the body and then flares out at or just below the knees creating the fanciful illusion of a mermaid tail. The mermaid gown went on to more fame when Jean Patou followed Rochas’ lead of looking to the ocean for inspiration. Patou’s mermaid gown graced the pages of “Vogue” magazine in 1933. We still see interpretations of this style all over the red carpet during awards season.

Fast forward to 2023 and mermaid fashion is everywhere, propelled to new levels of chic by the live action movie “The Little Mermaid”.  And let’s not forget the annual Coney Island Mermaid Parade. So what are the mermaid dress codes?  The look is ocean inspired drawing upon marine blues, the subtle green of sea glass and of course, sequins, iridescence and sparkle, sometimes in the silvery tones of fish scales. It is characterized by sequined bralettes, corsets, lace-up tops, sheer flowing skirts, tulle, scallop details and ruffles, which are key to the look as they represent the movement of waves.

What’s the best jewelry to wear with mermaidcore?  In addition to gems in shades of watery blue and sea green, silvery tones are also important. Some great gemstone choices for those who want to bring out their inner mermaid are aquamarine, pearls, opal and diamonds. A necklace with diamonds reminiscent of water drops, also has an under the sea vibe. Jeweled shells and ocean creatures are another lovely addition to a mermaidcore jewelry collection.

Whether you’re into Barbiecore, mermaidcore or both, jewelry adds an extra spark of glamour and personality to your outfit. Consider buying yourself a little something with a pink gem  or ocean inspired theme to add to your of the moment Barbiecore or mermaidcore fashions.  One thing is for sure, your jewel will still be around long after the trend has come and gone and come back again.

Authored by Amber Michelle