Living the Life at Half Price

Living the Life at Half Price

Monday, July 25, 2011

Ippolita Bangles--the Look for Less!

Ippolita "Rock Candy" 5-Stone Sterling Silver Bracelet
 each $295 at Nordstrom
I've mentioned before how I've been looking for a cool silver (or white gold) bangle for my wrist, but have a lot of difficulty because I have really small hands, so bangles usually slide right off me.  I think I've also mentioned how I really like Ippolita jewelry.  I especially LOVE their bangles.  After doing some research, I read that Ippolita bangles run small.  You have no idea how much this excited me.  So the other day, I went to Bloomingdale's to try one of them on, hopeful that this wonderful bangle would fit.  But, you guessed it, it slid right off my hand.  However, the salesperson informed me that at no charge, I could special order different sizes in the Ippolita bangles.  He brought out a special Ippolita bangle sizer (which was like a giant ring sizer), and for the first time in my life, I tried on a bangle that actually fit me.  It was pretty weird--I've never felt a bangle have friction over my hand when putting it on.  In case you were wondering, standard Ippolita bangles are a size "2."  I need a size "0" (and if you need a larger size, you can special order that too!).  Unfortunately, you have to allow up to three months to receive the bracelet.

While I'm pretty excited at the prospect of finally ending my search for a silver bracelet, I have to note that these bracelets are pretty expensive.  I know that there is a mark-up for the designer itself, and I know the price of gold and silver have gone up dramatically recently, but I can't seem to wrap my head around that.  I remember when I was in middle school, my friends and I would walk to the local Marshall's (it was pretty much the only store within walking distance from where we lived), and we'd buy sterling silver earrings for under $10.  Or my dad would pick up a sterling silver bracelet from Macy's for around $25.  What happened to those days?  The Ippolita bangle that I want is $295.  For one thin silver band?  Really?  And the problem is, that I want two or three of them to wear together!  That adds up.  Years ago, I wouldn't even consider getting silver, and would have insisted on white gold.  Now, you can't even find white gold anymore!  

So what's a girl to do?  Well, I can suck it up and just buy the Ippolita bracelets.  Or I can look for more reasonable options.  I was actually surprised how difficult it was to find worthy substitutes, but I did find a few:

1. Kendra Scott Leanne Bracelet--$106 at Layla Grace.  Pros: great price, comes with multiple bracelets.  Cons: while it has a similar look to the Ippolita bracelets, it's still pretty distinct.  Also, I want silver bracelets, and these are gold-plated.  But I still really like these!  Lastly, I'm not sure you can adjust the size.

2. No. 7 Multistone Bangle--$98 at Henri Bendel.  Pros: like the Kendra Scott bracelet, it's a great price and comes with multiple bracelets.  It also has a pretty unique look.  Cons: Same as the KS bracelet re size and metal.  While I love rose gold, I'm looking for a silver bracelet.

3.  Bangle from Etsy seller BrooklynArts--$48 for one.  Pros: for those unfamiliar with Etsy, it's a great forum where independent artists and designers sell their wares--so if you buy something, you're supporting one of those artisans.  Also, prices tend to be a little lower.  This particular bracelet resembles the Ippolita one the most.  Cons:  Gold (18K gold plate), don't think I can change the size.  But we're getting closer!

4. Bangle from Etsy seller Delezhan--$48 for one, or $125 for three.  Same pros and cons as #3.

5. Robindira Unsworth Juicy Bangles--$450 for a set of three.  After much searching, I finally came across these bracelets.  Pros: This is an established jewelry line, more high-end than Kendra Scott, but still cheaper than Ippolita. Also, according to their site, all jewelry is handmade upon order and that they can assist you with special orders.  This leads me to believe that you could get a custom-sized bracelet.  Cons: More expensive than the Etsy options.

6.Robindira Unsworth Juicy Bangles--$525 for a set of three.  Pros: Looks like this may be the look for less winner!  This was the only sterling silver option I could find.  It's definitely a nice alternative to the Ippolita bangles, and while the price is still pretty steep, it's still significantly less than Ippolita. Also, as mentioned in #5, I think I could special order this in my size.  Cons:  Still expensive.  And while I like the multi-colored stones, I can't decide is if I like them as much as the clear quartz in the Ippolita version.  Also, I kind of prefer how the Ippolita stones are more of an oval shape.  I wonder if these kinks could be worked out in a custom order?  

So there you have it--if you're like me and love the Ippolita bangles but not their price, I hope this helped you a bit!  And if anyone knows where I can find more reasonable sterling silver options, please share.  I suppose one option I have is to wait for a friends and family sale at one of the big department stores (Bloomie's, Saks, and Bergdorf all carry Ippolita), or open up a credit card to get a discount.  Such decisions . . . what do you think I should do--spring for the Ippolita, or give the Robindira Unsworth a try?



  1. This is very helpful. I love these bracelets, too, but not the price.

  2. Wow, perfect. Fortunately, I found your website!
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