Written By: Kayla Lazarovic
The infamous Cartier love bracelet was created in 1969 by the Italian Jewelry designer Aldo Cipullo and is one of the most recognizable designer jewelry pieces. The bracelet symbolized that those who wore it were essentially “Locked into love”. This was because the only way to remove the bracelet from the wearer was by a screwdriver that comes with the purchase of the bracelet. It was even rumored that at the time of the bracelet’s release, hospitals in New York had to keep one of the special screwdrivers on hand in case a person needed it removed. When the bracelet was first released, it could only be purchased as a gift for someone. Consumers today would find this idea strange, but the symbolism behind it is nothing less than charming. You were only able to purchase a bracelet for another person as a representation of your love in the form of a gift.
This bracelet was revolutionary at the time because of its effect on how people would wear jewelry. Since the bracelet was meant to be always worn and was difficult to remove, high-end jewelry such as the love bracelet became a norm and moved into the area of becoming an everyday staple item rather than solely being worn for fancy occasions. The love bracelet had a huge effect on modernizing casual jewelry wear. Today, no matter what aesthetic you choose to partake in, whether it be minimalism or maximalism, the appeal of everyday jewelry is consistent.
Since its introduction, Cartier has now expanded their love bracelet into a love collection that now offers rings, earrings, and necklaces. The whole collection has been able to maintain relevance because of its classic style and symbolism and is still extremely popular in the jewelry market today. The Cartier bracelet almost signifies this Idea of “I made it” and is worn specifically by popular influencers and trendy celebrities. One of Cartier’s newest ambassadors is influencer Emma Chamberlain, which they helped accessorize for last year’s MET gala. Other celebrities who have proudly stood by the love bracelet for years include Kylie Jenner and Meghan Markle.
Although Cartier itself is a French luxury goods brand, the bracelet itself was originally designed by Aldo in New York. As of now, the manufacturing process takes place in La Chaux-de-Fonds in Switzerland. Cartier is an extremely prestigious jewelry house and that being said, the brand only uses superior materials in its manufacturing process. Cartier’s love bracelets are entirely made in 18k white, pink gold, yellow, and 950 platinum. Some editions include 4 to 10 gemstones made with real diamonds and prices range from 6 to 50 grand.
Cartier’s iconic bracelet was first introduced in 1969 and although the style hasn’t changed, there was more selection available come 1979 when the first diamond-incorporated love bracelet was introduced. The love collection is still extremely popular and expanding with the love necklace being introduced just last year.
Other jewelers in the industry have not been able to take inspiration from the love bracelet and modify it just because of the reputation of the love bracelet alone. It is so well known and has its own distinct simple style that it can’t be redone by other brands. The downside to the bracelet’s simple look is that it is easy for brands to duplicate. Many fast fashion brands imitate the classic look of the love bracelet and resell it as their own product (it is among one of the world’s most duped jewelry items along with other brands such as Van Cleef.)