Faux Jewelry Made Fashionable by Coco Chanel
Coco Chanel was more than a designer, more than a fashionista, she was an inventor. To me, she single-handedly forever changed our mindset about fashion and jewelry. She gave us a new appreciation for faux jewelry. She made a lifestyle that included wearing jewelry. For you see, jewelry was an art form to her. But more than this, she lived her professional philosophy and wore jewelry daily and celebrated its artform. Coco Chanel's jewelry continues to be fashionable even today. She made not just layers of pearls fashionable but also faux jewelry including CZs. Join me as we explore the world faux jewelry and CZs, learn Coco's view concerning both fashion and faux jewelry, learn about the Mohs standard and different types of faux jewelry and lastly learn how to consider a CZ for an engagement ring.
How Could Coco Chanel Set the Standard for Jewelry?
Why listen to Coco Chanel's opinion on faux jewelry? Because Coco Chanel forever set new fashion standards:
- She made the black dress something more than a dress for mourning (she would be thrilled to see wedding party dresses now in black very much vogue!),
- Chanel created fashionable silhouettes out of knitted fabric, she took the frumpy out of knit and created a well-tailored look that works even today (St. John suits and beyond),
- Chanel artfully combined both fake and real in pearls and gold,
- She took costume jewelry into the realm of the wealthy and made it a staple for the haute couture,
- She created the quilted handbag (with her signature chain of course!),
- And gold and silver chains and long pearl became vogue only because of her vision. Coco Chanel' iconic CC's remain an emblem of status for both young and the old even today - 40 years after her death. Coco's real quote I believe was in regards to mixing faux pearls with actually read:
"Who cared if the pearls were fake, she laughed if it was a real Chanel design?" 
Gabrielle Bonheur "Coco" Chanel (August 19th, 1883 – January 10th, 1971) took the fashion world for a ride and fashion was never to be the same again. Coco literally reinvented fashion. No other costume jewelry survives the ravishes of fashion as hers. No other costume jewelry maintains such a high value. No other fashion designer has remained relevant 40 years after her death - except for Chanel. Chanel taught us the basic elements of fashion - illusion.
Coco Would Cheer for Faux Diamond Rings
Wikipedia states that she was named as one of the 100 most important people of the century - the only coururier to be named. And rightfully so. If Coco were with us today, she would be leading the way to taking jewelry to a new realm - incorporating jewelry right in our fashion. And with it faux engagement rings.
Buy a faux engagement ring! Oh, no! What has the world gone to?! Frugality and greater beauty. Buying a faux diamond under whatever brand you wish (from Diamonique to cubic zirconia to synthetic moisannite to the many other brand names now on the market ) has its rightful place and purpose within our lives.
Coco Was About Comfort
Another of Coco's mantra's on fashion was comfort. She was exacerbated with designers who designed only for looks with no concern for comfort.
Coco and Costume Jewelry
Coco loved costume jewelry and took faux jewelry into the realm of the very, very wealthy. Her jewelry designs were large. Coco herself was a very small woman and yet she incorporated layers of long pearls, layers of large chains. Her pieces of costume jewelry were anything but petite.
Faux and Knocks Offs
Ironically when Shirly MacClaine played Coco, she confided that early in her career, she had gotten in trouble with the management at the studio for wearing a knock off of a Coco Chanel design!
What Would Coco Do Today?
No one really knows. She was the innovator in the industry. She was a petite designer from France who changed fashion forever - around the world. She was all about the visual presence.
I think Coco would applaud the faux diamond engagement rings. Faux or CZ diamond engagement rings fit well with her demand for comfort. More importantly, from a design standpoint, faux fits well with her GRAND style of visual impact.
"The art of crystal growing has reached a point where the distinction between natural and man-made has become for all practical purposes meaningless..."
David Federman Modern Jeweler Magazine 1996
Everything is a fine diamond in the hands of a skillful man,
Everything becomes polished glass in the hands of a fool.
Jean Fountaine French Poet
Jean de La Fontaine (July 8th, 1621- April 13th,1695) 
Chanel Faux Jewelry Examples
Faux or CZ Engagement Rings
Faux Diamond Glossary
Chemical Vapour Deposition (CVD) - A process to deposit a layer of a material from a gaseous phase onto a surface.
Cubic Zirconia (CZ) Cubic zirconia is the cubic crystalline form of zirconium dioxide (ZrO2), is a very hard, optically flawless stone normally without color. Chemically it is a form of zirconium dioxide. CZs can be colored to resemble other precious and semi-precious stones. CZs have become the staple of high quality costume jewelry.
Cultured Diamond - see HPHT
High Pressure High Temperature (HPHT) - A process that forms crystals in an environment of very high pressure and temperature. This is the technology that
replicates Mother Nature's phenomenon of diamond creation. Temperature up-to
1800 Celsius and Pressure up-to 60 000 Atmpospheres is applied to the
"diamond seed" to begin the process in the incubator. Colloquial term - "cultured diamond".
Diamonique - a brand name of synthetic cubic zirconia.
Mohs Scale of Hardness - a hardness scale to grade precious gemstones, ranges from 1-10 with 10 being the hardest. CZ's register about a 9.0 on the Mohs hardness scale, moissanite about a 9.25, compared to 10 for a diamond. NOTE: When a jeweler sets a stone, they will ask the hardness of the stone in order to provide the best tension for the setting.
Moissanite Moissanite (pronounced moy-sun-ite) is an alternative simulated diamond, is named after its discoverer, Henri Moussan. A mineral found in Canyon Diablo in Arizona. A man made version of moissanite is a synthetic gem.
Life and Open Communication Especially With Finances and Jewelry
Like all things in life, buying a faux diamond - purchasing a CZ engagement ring demands much thought and consideration from your lifetime partner. This is a symbol of love. The symbol of love must not be fake or cloaked in false promises. You can only purchase a CZ engagement ring IF the two of you BOTH agree. Life comes full circle
Stop right here - if you or your spouse have strong views on this subject, read no further. Respect his/her opinions and move on to purchasing the real diamond engagement ring of your dreams.
IF a CZ for an engagement ring is a possibility, stay with me here to learn some basic terms and view several different options from material choice to machine cut to hand cut to synthetic, to cultured diamond to moissanite and more.
The Benefits of a Faux Diamond - a CZ Engagement Ring
The faux diamond is a great alternative for those sticking to a strict budget, or for those in need of a temporary ring as you shop together for the final ring. Whatever your purpose or need, here are a couple of the benefits of a faux engagement ring:
- Same Great Design Options as Real Diamonds
- Same Great Setting Options - Gold, White Gold, Platinum, or Titanium
- Platinum Overlay is another option (not commonly seen in real diamonds)
- Substantial Savings
- Less Concern for Theft or Loss
- Great for Travel - "Travel Jewelry"
The Downside of the CZ Engagement Ring May Entail:
- Less Acceptance From Other Family Members (if they notice)
- May be Perceived As Less Romantic from Either Party
- May Visually Be More Cloudy
- When Tightening or Resetting the Prongs, Must Inform The Jeweler the Hardness is Less Than a Diamond - Nothing is as Hard as a Diamond - Mother Nature does it Best and Has it Perfected!
IF either party in the marriage is not in full acceptance of the faux diamond, it is highly advisable not to proceed along this route. When I was married, I requested a faux diamond, I was told no repeatedly. I simply could not change his mind. You cannot change opinions, always be ready to compromise.
If you are the male and you wish to re-allocate funds to another purpose such as home, talk openly with your wife to be and discuss it. Don't rule out the possibility.
Genuine Gems - The Lady Knows
The one item you cannot do is to pass off a faux diamond for a real - gentleman listen up - it simply doesn't work. You can choose together, but to fool her will only make you the fool in the end. Save yourself the grief and remember, honesty is always the best policy - and in affairs of the heart it is not just a policy but could be fatal to your relationship.
Even if the diamond is technically real but "cultured", you need to honest up front. White lies are still lies, be honest and you will set the foundation for a great life together.
Type of Fake Diamond Engagement Rings
Lab created diamonds are made by either: Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD) or a High Temperature High Pressure (HPHT) process. Let's review the two types - simulants and synthetics:
- Cubic zirconia simulant or CZs are the least expensive. CZs some say mimics the look of a real diamond initially and can become scratched and cloudy with time.
- Moissanite simulant engagement rings are more expensive than cubic zirconia rings, but they wear better with time. Moissanite simulants have higher brilliance and fire than natural diamonds, although many consumers enjoy the extra flash and sparkle of moissanite rings. They are harder on the Mohs scale and more durable.
- Synthetic diamonds or "cultured diamonds" look exactly like real diamonds, and they are just as durable as real diamonds. Synthetic diamonds rings are more expensive than simulant diamond rings. Synthetic diamonds are identical to diamonds on the Mohs scale.
Cost Verses Performance
You always get what you pay for - if you need high performance, the synthetic diamonds might be a good choice for you. If you need a piece of travel jewelry and the wear and tear is expected to be minimal, the simulant may be your best choice. The main item is you are happy with your purchase for many years to come.
Both options - the simulant and the synthetic are environmentally friendly. You can rest assured, no open-pit mining, blood diamonds, etc.
Security and peace of mind
One of the great items about faux diamonds is less worry - greater peace of mind. Loss, misplacement, damage or theft are less worrisome when the dollars are substantially different. You can truly enjoy your engagement ring.
Shopping Tips - Questions to Ask About CZ or Faux Diamond Ring
- What is your return policy? Repair policy for chips and scratches?
- Metal - 14K, 18K, white gold, yellow gold. (Please be aware - vermeil may not be the proper choice for a ring being worn everyday.) Many rings will have it stamped on the inside of the ring.
- Type of stone? Simulant, synthetic? or Moissanite?
- Hardness of the stone? Keep this on hand for future reference, will need for any maintenance, tightening of your setting, etc...
- Hand cut or machine cut stone?
Sources for CZ or Faux Engagement Rings
Sources for faux and CZ and synthetic diamond engagement rings are Endless. For your shopping pleasure we have compile a number of great sources for your review. Do go out and search, learn what you like and you don't like. Set your budget and your priorities together.
We Grow Diamonds
Apollo® Created Diamonds
Apollo® created diamonds are identical to
mined diamonds. An Apollo® created diamond is a diamond - chemically,
physically and optically identical to a diamond found in nature. Apollo®
is the only company in the world currently producing and selling
colorless cultured diamond.
An interesting fact to note is that there is a huge variety in diamonds that are mined in the earth. For example, diamonds that are pulled out of the ground in Russia are very different from those pulled out of the ground in Africa, Australia, or Canada. Each mine produces diamonds unique to their location. Apollo® created diamonds do not possess such characteristic differences. An Apollo® is an Apollo®.
Apollo® Diamond Growth: Apollo® creates diamonds through a technique derived from the process known as Chemical Vapor Deposition (CVD). Apollo® uses a growth chamber and meticulously places seeds roughly the size of a shirt button into that chamber. Once the seeds are in place we rain carbon onto the seeds, and new diamond grows one carbon atom at a time, on top of the seed. The diamond is then separated from the seed, inspected to ensure that it meets the high standards held by Apollo®, and certified before being sold.
Cutting: Apollo® created diamonds, just as mined diamonds, must be cut by highly skilled artisans that have been trained in the art of diamond cutting for years. There is no difference whatsoever in the way that Apollo® created diamonds are cut and the way that mined diamonds are cut. Diamond cutting is one of the few processes that have changed very little in the past one hundred years. All cutters must prove that they have trained and apprenticed for years before they begin to cut diamonds for Apollo®. We hold cutters to the highest standards of quality and perfection such that all Apollo® created diamonds achieve their true brilliance before they are qualified to be set into jewelry and sold directly to consumers.
One of largest online retailer CubicJewelry.com
We offer outstanding values on the highest-quality jewelry available, with more than 10,000 Designs from which to choose. From simple, classic designs, perfect for wearing every day, to our stunning CubicJewelry.com Signature collection, we have the right jewelry to make any occasion a memorable one.
OUR CUBIC ZIRCONIAS ARE AAAAA QUALITY , A FIVE STAR QUALITY AND CARRIED ONLY BY CUBICJEWELRY.COM ( CUBICJEWELRY.COM IS OFFICIAL WEBSITE DISTRIBUTOR FOR LABCREATEDDIAMOND.COM)
return policy. 10-day full refund. 15-day exchange.
secure online purchasing.
Carat describes itself as a "luxury fashion jewelry company". Founded in 2002, it is all about fantasy rather than reality. Found in the Middle East, Europe, Asia and Australia.
From solitaires to matching bands - great selection for finding the ring of your dreams. Outstanding designs on the pave sets for your wedding. Also, the eternity bands include a great collection of princess cut stones.
Emitations Homes of Celebrity CZ Engagement Rings
Celebrity Engagement Rings
It's hard not to crave the fantastic sparkle of celebrity engagement rings. The only problem? The cost, which most of us everyday-celebrity type of gals just can't afford. Emitations has an extensive selection of celebrity inspired cubic zirconia engagement rings and wedding ring sets that are sure to satisfy. Best of all, these fake cz engagement rings are priced just right for any shopper!
Solutions from magnetic clasps to cushions for clip on earrings to ring size reducers to the much needed earring stabilizers ( ) and many more. to one of the largest collections of jewelry travel cases....
Diamonique - Can You Tell the Difference?
QVC Creator of Diamonique
QVC is the home shopping network that created Diamonique®
Bloomberg's Report - How to Spot a Fake Diamond
Video About Russian Brilliant Diamonds
Russian Brilliants® was formed in 2000 to market state-of-the-art simulated diamonds and synthetic colored stones set in expertly crafted gold and platinum fine jewelry. The advanced optical technology and precision hand cutting displayed in Russian Brilliants® simulated diamonds is the cornerstone of our plans for the future.
Russian Brilliants® are “hand cut” to ideal proportions.
- Russian Brilliants
It's now possible for you to have magnificent jewelry at great savings over earth-mined diamonds. Set in gold or platinum settings, your diamond simulant will be practically indistinguishable from a natural diamond. With hundreds of available cus
Diamond Nexus - Miss America Crown
2009 Miss USA Kirsten Dalton's Diamond Nexus Labs Crown
Diamond Nexus Labs Franklin, Wisconsin
The official Diamond Nexus Labs crown for Miss USA 2009 features flawless gemstones.
Kristen Dalton became the 58th winner of the Miss USA pageant and wore a gemstone crown by Diamond Nexus Labs. The pageant partnered with jewelry sponsor, Diamond Nexus Labs, to design the first eco-friendly gemstone crown for both the Miss USA pageant and the upcoming Miss Universe event.
Valued at $202,000, the Miss USA crown features 1,936 flawless lab-created gemstones for a total of 166.82 carats set in 325 grams of gold and platinum. Fifty-one of these jewels adorn the oval centerpiece to celebrate each of the 51 women competing to become Miss USA 2009.
Our vision for growth is to become America’s shopping destination for discovering great styles at compelling prices. To support this vision we have updated our Long Range Plan to guide our actions over the next five years.
SitaraGem® is created with a specialized formula comprised of zirconium oxide, rare minerals and other elements to create a unique mix that enhances the SitaraGem® core for increased durability (9.1mohs, a diamond being 10) and lifetime luster. Standard CZ's range anywhere from 7.5 to 8.5 in hardness and are simply made from zirconium and oxygen.
SitaraGem® is expertly hand-cut by our world-renowned skilled diamond cutters. A SitaraGem is cut, faceted and polished to ideal diamond proportions and finished with exquisite detail that exceed the highest industry standards. Their incredible fire and sparkle is visual proof of this process.
Not only is Ziamond "The Cubic Zirconia Specialists," we are also recognized as top quality Master Jewelers. Ziamond is commissioned by many customers to create or reproduce the design of their dreams. All of these designs are Special Orders and not returnable.
CZ Engagement Ring
Life is filled with grand moments, from birth to marriage to children and grandchildren and more. Nothing is as memorable as your engagement ring. Consider the choices. Just as Coco Chanel gave us new options for the little black dress, we now have new options for our engagement ring - from simulants to synthetics and even moissonite. The choice is yours. You may choose the CZ for your gem only for a temporary ring until you can shop together. You may choose a CZ as your permanent travel jewelry. Or you may choose a CZ set in gold or platinum as your final choice. Whatever, the decision, make the decision together and you will set a strong foundation for your life together.
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© 2010 Kelly Kline Burnett
Kelly Kline Burnett (author) from Madison, Wisconsin on March 02, 2013:
You have a fantastic site. I am going to add a link at the end of this hub for you because it pertains directly to this topic.
BTW, my best friend loves green jewelry so I will be shopping for her this afternoon.
Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing.
James on January 26, 2013:
Thank you and would love to know what you think of the site Gmagoldie love your comments and how you really interact with everyone good job you have 2 thumbs up from me!
Kelly Kline Burnett (author) from Madison, Wisconsin on November 28, 2012:
I don't normally approve comments with links but your link directly pertains to the subject. Additionally, I am very appreciative of adding new websites that specialize in this frugal way of shoppping.
james on November 25, 2012:
Jewelry4412 you simply will not find a better quality in cubic zirconia jewery online. With a great selection of jewelry for all occasions and for men and women with free shipping and great prices you cant go wrong just take a look yourself at our website here http://www.jewelry4412.com thank you
Kelly Kline Burnett (author) from Madison, Wisconsin on May 10, 2012:
An engagement ring is not about fashion, it is about a lasting commitment. The ring must suit the family - both the style of the woman and the budget for the family. If the CZ is where the budget falls and both man and woman are happy with the choice, that is the real criteria.
mike on May 02, 2012:
Online Fashion is the treasure of glamor and beauty that harmonizes with the style and makes every woman totally new. Fashion for woman and their taste and preferences change and we consider this and accordingly change our style to leave a smile of happiness Our products are the best in online fashion and have a fleeting presence in fashion style and make a mark in belts, buckle, scarves, designer scarves, as well as in fashion Jewelry.
Kelly Kline Burnett (author) from Madison, Wisconsin on September 16, 2011:
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and yet with the CZ, most cannot tell the difference. The item we must always take special care is to appreciate what we do have. Real and expensive may be daunting for the concern of the dollars at stake. Living within our means is important to everyone. CZ is a great alternative that I wish more people would consider.
I took one of my CZs to the Kessler Diamond Store in Appleton, Wisconsin because the setting was loose. Their staff was unbelievable. They treated me and my fake diamond with complete respect. I cannot say enough about that store! Absolutely awesome. I appreciate a jeweler who understands not everyone can or wants to spend the precious dollars on a real diamond.
If every jewelry store had the customer service of Kesslers the world would be a better place!
hanwillingham on September 02, 2011:
Thanks for the advice.
Kelly Kline Burnett (author) from Madison, Wisconsin on September 17, 2010:
Thank you for stopping by. I appreciate your kind comments.
H P Roychoudhury from Guwahati, India on September 17, 2010:
Birth, graduation and marriage are vital stages of life and the engagement with ring is the most pious point of touch in every body’s life –the events of the stages of life are depicted so nicely in the hub is beyond description.
msorensson on September 17, 2010:
Thank you. I enjoyed the hub, GmaGoldie.