Wednesday, January 28, 2009

How do you store your J Crew Jewelry?

I've only recently started purchasing J Crew jewelry.

If you must know, I've only really started purchasing jewelry again, after being essentially Jewelry Celibate for about 15 years.

In the eighties while still in high-school, I had worked in the retail industry and was a jewelry fiend. But as the minimalist look became popular, I gradually stopped wearing jewelry altogether, with the exception of my wedding and engagement bands, watch and occasionally stud-style earrings, I wore no jewelry.

Then I found J Crew. Although I was purchasing J Crew items and putting them together as shown in the catalog or online, I found that my outfits were simply missing that "je ne sais quoi" quality. It dawned on me that what seperated my outfits from those in the J Crew catalog were really the jewelry. It's like having a birthday cake sans the icing. Without the jewelry, the outfits just didn't have that "wow" power.

So, I started investing in J Crew jewelry. The very first piece of jewelry I purchased from J Crew was the Wood-Bead and Firestone Necklace. It's a stunning piece. Smooth, chocolately brown wood-beads interspersed with Amber Firestones. Just stunning! And like they say, I was hooked and the the rest is history!

J Crew jewelry isn't cheap by any means - regardless if it's on sale or not. I know that there are replica pieces elsewhere for much cheaper prices but somehow, the replicas are just that, REPLICAS! ... and they never look quite as pretty as the J Crew ones.

Today, I own several necklaces, bracelets and bangles from J Crew. I cherish these pieces not only because they're pricey for costume jewelry but also that they're really pretty and I would be hard-pressed to find replacement pieces.

The issue I have is, I'm having a difficult time trying to figure out how best to store them.

I had originally thought of leaving them in their original boxes with pictures stuck to the outside -but let's face it, I would take them out of the boxes and never put them back after wearing. The pictures would fall off and since I would eventually become too lazy to open the boxes each evening to put the jewelry pieces back, it would only be a matter of time before I ended up leaving my jewelry in a huge messy pile and would not be able to find anything easily.

Short of designing and creating a wood board of sorts where I could hang all of my necklaces, bracelets and bangles in a easy to locate and return fashion, I thought that the way I currently have set up, would likely be the best way.

I've essentially used the tops and bottoms of each J Crew jewelry box - you know the ones that the jewelry comes in (leaving the cotton padding in each half) and storing my jewelry in them. Since I don't have to contend with tops, it's easy for me to take the jewelry out, wear it and put them back in its' original place.

I set this up the first week of January of this year and so far it appears to be working. I find it easy to locate pieces and as easy to return them to their places when I'm done wearing them.

But I'm curious, how do you manage your J Crew jewelry? Do you have a custom-made design? Do you use a board of sorts? I'm always looking for a better way to organize my jewelry. I would love to hear your ideas. I hope you'll share!


Anonymous said...

i use a mirrored jewelry cabinet to keep almost all my jewelry in. very convenient. i've been meaning to post pictures on my blog because it actually looks fairly cool inside, but i am a bit embarrassed to let the world know how many pairs of earrings i actually own :-[

i only own a few pieces of j. crew jewelry -- whale enamel bangle, mod circles bracelet, opera-length gold-ring necklace (it looks from your pictures you might have this one too?), crystal garden bracelet, glass bead ribbon necklace and the cloud necklace -- but i love them all dearly too :)

Leslie said...

Hey there! I used to do what you are currently doing, except I had them stacked with their tops on....TOTAL PAIN!! I finally chucked most of the boxes (kept a few in each size for traveling) and bought a linen organizer thingy at Target in the closet section. There are nine square sections and I keep a piece (or two, if there's room) in each section. One section is devoted to my rings (I have 8). So far it's working out well, except with the spring line coming out I'm going to need another organizer. I'm hitting T today to see if they still have the same one I already have...I'm a stickler for matching. I like my closet to be SUPER organized so that I feel like I'm sort of in a boutique shopping. It helps when I can see everything I have, so that I don't completely overspend (okay, who am I kidding....)

On another my ivory Lucinda yesterday. I LOVE IT!!! I'm so glad you and Slastena recommended it and that I was lucky enough to get an ivory one. Yeah!!

bug pin said...

GREAT POST! I cannot wait to hear what everyone says. This is something I have now struggled with for the last few months as I keep adding the JC long beaded, chunky necklaces etc. to my jewelry. I was JUST like you with the small, dainty chains that have diamond this or that and now I am really into the look of the JC jewelry. It is TAKING over my drawer, though!

I have found an AWESOME website for jewelry called Ginny's Ear Nest ( but have wavered about ordering due to how HEAVY all these necklaces are. Plus the width of the beads-will they fit on a peg etc.?? I am not sure it could tolerate that weight but I am liking this idea in theory...ya know pegs across and one can hang and visually see all their stuff?
I am honing in on this idea though--I think it will be best and I may even rig something. I am not a big earring person as I think the necklaces say most of what I want so I usually wear studs and maybe some bracelets or just one of their large rings for statement.

Tamara said...

I use a lot of small trays & bowls (almost look like egg cups) from Anthropologie. I also have a lovely turquiosy birdy like stand from Anthro that I keep the headbands, necklaces and bracelets on. And some vintage pottery trays (from Ebay). Everything is out on my dresser - if I can't see it I won't use it! HTH!

Tamara said...

Oh! Just went to Anthro to check on that jewelry stand & realized it came from & they have loads of them right now, lots of cute styles!

Crew_Girl_In_Canada said...

Goldenmeans, btw, I love your blog and read it regularly. I'm more of a lurker but I love it nonetheless! The mirrored jewelry cabinet is fabulous! Oh how I would love to have one of those. There are so many compartments and pegs! But I cannot imagine paying that much for one - not only that, I really don't have the room for one in our bedroom. I'm envious, in a good way, that is! :)

Leslie, I was doing exactly what you were originally doing and yes, it's such a PAIN! There's no Tarjay in Canada. Wish we had one but I really ought to go to Ikea and see if I can find something similar. I'm sure they'll have something. What a great idea! BTW, I want your Ivory Lucinda! Hey, look, what's that? (as I grab your Lucinda and run!) lol!

Bug_Pin, isn't it so true?! Those chunky J Crew necklaces are over-taking everything! I had to check out the site you'd mentioned. I like the idea of the jewelry racks but like yourself, I think those racks are created for those more dainty designs, don't you think? But it's a great place to get ideas though! I've been tossing around the idea of creating my own board with pegs (kind of like a diy but nicely finished project) to be hung on the side of my Armoire - I really don't have anywhere else to hang it. Maybe when I have some time. I once saw an ingeneous idea for a Jewelry board. It was very similar to the one Goldenmeans has, ie. there's a mirrored front and when you swung it open, the jewelry was hidden behind it. But it was really large - around the width of a door and half the height - I saw it in diy magazine. I would LOVE to make something like that but then again, space becomes an issue. Maybe I could make one smaller. Hmmmm... that's an idea!

Tamara, the way you store your jewelry sounds very boutique-like. Very chic! I must check out the link you provided! Thank you!

Winona said...

i saw a picture in domino once and i really like it alot. on top of i dresser they had all kinds of pretty bowls and trays(antique and antiquee lokking like from anthrop.) in different heights and colors.i recreated that and i feel like i am "shopping" in my own store, plus everytime i see all my baubles it makes me happy.
HTH ina

A Bigger Closet said...

Excellent post! I recently began acquiring JC jewelry too and find I'm quickly running out of drawer space for those silver boxes. Goldenmeans, your jewelry cabinet is just perfect. It looks like there is a wall mounted version available too for those of us who have limited floor space.

Anonymous said...

I keep my jewelry in a travel jewelry box w/pullouts, sections, earring holder and ring keeper. I purchased it at TJ Maxx at least 9 years ago.

I also have three leatherette sectioned jewelry cases that are see thru at the top. I purchased them at Ross a few years ago.

I really love both but can't wait to find more of the ones I purchased at Ross. They are so easy and really nice looking.

During Xmas season I purchased two JC's Satin Rollup Jewelry Traveler w/the zippers. They are awesome and really hold alot. I really like the different size pockets and it holds at least 5 pairs of earrings in the earring section alone. What a great buy.

I do have some jewelry I store in their boxes also due to size.

jcrew engineer said...

I recently purchased a slightly opaque soft plastic shoe organizer that hangs on the back of my closet door. It has 24 pockets that I use to hold my J Crew jewelry. It is transparent enough to discern what is in each pocket.I had first considered the linen/fabric type. But they were much more expensive and would require attaching pictures or labels of some sort to each pocket I got the plastic one at Target for $7.99.