How To Choose Earrings For Jeans’ Styles

High WASPs (n.b. California regional variant) dress for balance. We love the cautious subjunctive;  it’s all about the IF statements (and the semi-colon).

  • IF you are wearing navy you want to complement it with something bright.
  • IF your shoes sparkle something else must be matte.
  • IF your pants are tight your top must be loose.

And, the subject of today’s post, IF your jeans are one shape, your earrings must be another. Note: I choose earrings here because they are my primary accessory. One can apply the same principle to shoes, if you’re podiatrically exploratory, or scarves, if you don’t mind all the tying and flapping.

As a first point, if rely on earrings for style in jeans, you’ve got to go beyond diamond studs. At least beyond the small studs, and I prefer danglers to large ones, given the High WASP propensity for attached ear lobes.

If you’re wearing boyfriends, straight, frayed, reminiscent of manual labor, I suggest curves. Some pink.



Jeans: R13 Bowie Wash || Shoes: #1 Birkenstocks #2 Ancient Greek Sandals || Earrings: #1 Pink Chalcedony #2 Silver & Quartz #3 Gold

If you’re wearing bootcuts, with their wavier silhouette, I suggest geometry.



Jeans: J. Brand Katie (if those are too flared, others here) || Shoes: #1 Trina Turk #2 || Earrings: #1 Platinum #2 Blackened silver and gold (I like these too) #3 Gold, labradorite, and teeny pearls

As for skinnies, which I don’t wear but can think about, I believe the earring choice is determined by your shirt. Close-fitting top, swaying earrings. Loose top, structured at the lobe.

For the sake of this exercise, I’ve limited our shoe choice to two pairs for each type of jeans. As I said, some of you are more shoesploratory than I; you’ll balance adventurously (physically and aesthetically) on your feet. Some of you are less subjunctive, more declarative than the High WASP; you’ll pile on multiple accessories.

But here’s the principle that endures; make your choice evident. Show your aesthetic in contrast, buy no look off the shelf, choose sophistication in contradiction and balance.


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  • I like wearing soft, curvy or feminine earrings with boyfriend jeans and also something more geometric with curves, and I’ve been thinking I need some kind of long straight earrings as most of mine have curves.

    I am wearing gray skinnies today, rolled with gray supergas. If the wind weren’t so chill, I’d be in birkenstocks. My top however is a simple, slim fit and flare knit tunic in a subtle blue and gray floral. I am wearing oxidized silver hoops and a chunky ring, but think those skinny platinum bar drop earrings would be perfect.

    10:06 am
    Lisa said...

    @Mardel, Sounds like a beautiful outfit. I love the modernity of the platinum bars.

  • As I read this I’m wearing blue plaid flannel pajamas and an old RL tee. What earrings go with those? Hahahaha. Seriously, as an all pearl studs all the time person, this was fun to read and gave me some new ideas to be a little less boring.

    One again, thank you. You give me new ideas to think about.

    10:07 am
    Lisa said...

    @Mary anne, Pearl, gold ball, or diamond studs, with PJs, of course! And you know I’m in pj bottoms at home, inside and sometimes even when I cut roses out front.

  • Interesting!
    My thing are scarves and now I have to think about it (I do them by inspiration)-it must be something subconscious,feeling wrongs and rights,yin and yang

    10:08 am
    Lisa said...

    @dottoressa, I am sure it is subconscious. I think I might do earrings because I like the color of my eyes, and earrings make that axis of my face a focus.

  • Ooh, I love your earring choices! Those gold chandeliers are calling my name… ;-)

    10:08 am
    Lisa said...

    @Susan B (une femme), Why thank you ma’am. I myself am called loudly by the gold and black hoops…

  • Great post, Lisa – you have a real understanding of how clothes work together.

    I also like to consider the masculine/feminine balance when putting together an outfit.

    For instance, boyfriend jeans and Birkenstocks are masculine – gold chandeliers are feminine, so that works. Skinny jeans and “Pink Kitten Heels!” are feminine, so a leather motorcycle jacket would work with that combination.

    7:41 am
    Lisa said...

    @Diane, Thanks! I thought about the masculine/feminine, as that clearly is part of this. I’m just trying to be extra-sensitive about gender attribution, although I agree totally with the outfits you posit:).

  • Wear mostly studs – pearl or opal brought back from Australia. Occasionally wear vintage reproduction earrings from the Museum of Jewelry. With those, I’m usually looking to the color of the gems as much as style.

    7:42 am
    Lisa said...

    @DocP, If you’re wearing studs, makes total sense to look for color. You are mostly in dresses and skirts, yes?

  • Lisa, as a Midwestern daughter of first generation Americans–a Dane and a Sicilian, talk about culturally confused–it’s possible my heritage couldn’t be farther from yours. So I cannot express my continued delight in your High WASP observations. Yours is the first email I open, and I literally had better not be swallowing my coffee when I read your posts. You are my favorite writer in blogworld (when you’re not being funny as well!) Thank you for the joy. L.

    7:43 am
    Lisa said...

    @Linda G., It’s my pleasure and honor to provide these cultural tidbits, and even more to to amuse you or spark joy.

  • Your earrings are always so pretty. I never had my ears pierced so I don’t wear earrings. I wear necklaces instead. I suppose I’m trying for balance as well–wearing larger, sculptural pieces to balance plainer tops and smaller, simpler things if I’m wearing a print. I wore a small gold cross with my nursing uniform and no other jewelry except my wedding band, for the sake of cleanliness. Now I can wear anything I want, of course, but decades-long habits are hard to break.

    8:01 am
    Lisa said...

    @Wendelah, Long habits are hard – and your necklace strategy sounds very balanced.

  • Earrings are my favorite accessory, even if I have no other jewelry on! Love your choices Lisa!

    The Arts by Karena

    8:02 am
    Lisa said...

    @Karena, Thank you!

  • I can see you’re an earring liver just as I am!

    8:10 am
    Lisa said...

    @Mamavalveeta03, That I am! Do you have a favorite pair?

  • I like dangling earrings but a hate to see just a wire poking through lobes.

    8:12 am
    Lisa said...

    @Marina, I had never thought about that. I suppose it depends, for me, on the state of the ear lobes. I’m curious, what’s the source of your objection?

  • Since I cut my hair, the only earrings I wear for day are small wire gold hoops, and for dressed up, diamond studs. I know other people wear dangling earrings with shorter hair, but I feel like they’re too conspicuous on me (sort of my whole mode of dressing – the “too conspicuous angle” – but they’re are some beautiful choices and because I do tend to sort of lean towards a “tomboy” look, I try in other ways have something feminine. Necklaces have become more of my thing.

    8:13 am
    Lisa said...

    @Kathy, I agree. What my hair was short I wore smaller earrings. Otherwise, especially as I am not tall, it did seem like too much of a statement on me. Of course, back then, my thing was cashmere sweaters and office trousers;).

  • Well, blow me down. I had no idea there was a science behind jeans dressing. I’ll have to give some of the combos a go. Coming from a farming community (but not growing up on a farm) I find it hard to “dress up” jeans. I know I’m way behind the times, but if I’m going to dress up, jeans aren’t in the equation. But I’m going to give this a try, better late than never!

    8:16 am
    Lisa said...

    @Nancy, It’s a lot of fun, to be comfortable in jeans and still feel dressed up a bit. No question, it is a California style. And, I can’t claim science, unless we’re going to give cultural anthropology the nod:), but, it’s definitely at the level of an aesthetic principle.

  • Pure Casual Glamour. I love it!

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