When I first saw seashell necklaces on the runway at Prada back in February 2017, I'll admit I was a little dubious. I'm all for nautical-themed accessories, but pukka shells are surely reminiscent of Luke Ward from The O.C. Fast forward to one year later, and I'm contemplating buying my third set of shell earrings. They are the biggest accessory trend for spring/summer 2018 and have officially graduated from their early-2000s surfer past.
The key to wearing shells in 2018 is to avoid anything cheap or plastic-y. You'll want to look for delicate, expensive-looking shells either in gold or silver. There are a number of small designer labels who are driving this trend, including Rebecca de Ravenel and Tohum. Leandra Medine and Kate Foley have both been wearing gold "concha crab" necklaces by the latter.
"I've been working with various natural materials since I founded my brand, and shells have been always fascinating for me," Tohum designer Verda Alaton explains. "I wanted to gold-plate them to bring out the feminine beauty and the positive, warming spirit in them. I'm also a devoted traveller to Africa—particularly West Africa—where cowrie shells are believed to be a symbol of prosperity and good luck. I find them intriguing. To me, they're amazing designs of nature," says Alaton.