Fresh Approaches to Your Brooches

Hamptons-based stylist Lisa Frohlich shares fives ways to give the classic accessory a contemporary look.

“It’s all in the way that you wear it,” explains East Hampton-based stylist and trend consultant Lisa Frohlich. “Skip the scarf and shake things up by wearing the classic brooch in a whole new way. It could be the difference between looking “grandma” or looking “glam.”

Three golden floral brooches on a wool turquoise jacket.
Frohlich puts a twist on tradition by grouping multiple brooches on the lapel of her dress coat. “We tend to focus on the outfit under the coat but, this time of year, we also need to think about what goes on top!” she says.

Trust her. Not only has Frohlich dressed droves of A-List clients across New York, but she began her 20-year career as a jewelry buyer and then a jewelry designer with bespoke collections at Saks Fifth Avenue and Bloomingdale’s.

“It’s a shame that brooches often get overlooked and overshadowed by rings, bracelets, and the like,” she says. “To me, they are really the ‘gems’ of the jewelry family because of their versatility. I challenge you to think of one other piece that can be worn five ways!”

5 Ways to Wear a Brooch

red brooch on diamond headband
Amber brooch on braided headband

Head’s Up: Elevate an everyday look by pinning a brooch onto a fedora, beanie, or beret. For a formal affair, attach it to a silk or velvet headband or use it to disguise a plain bobby pin or barrette.

Best Foot Forward: Brooch clips are an easy way to add flare to flats or heels, and less expensive than a pair of jewel-encrusted Manolo Blahniks. To jazz up a pair of jeans, fasten small brooch clips to your boot shafts.

A bejeweled bee, a diamond encrusted dragonfly, and an emerald frog decorate a blue suede handbag.
Photo by Retan

Brag Worthy Bag: Attach a brooch onto a simple satin clutch for a statement-making accessory suitable for cocktail parties and black-tie events. Add one to a purse strap or top handle for unexpected elegance.

Wristy Business: A professional jeweler can remove the pin from the back of the brooch and solder it onto a simple gold or silver cuff bracelet to update a family heirloom. Keep in mind that this change could be permanent, so it’s not for the faint of heart or those with a fear of commitment.

Pin with orange and yellow stone, charms, chain of green stones on green lace belt.
Photo by Svetography

 Waist Not: Belt with bling! Pull that brooch out of the jewelry drawer and pin it to a wide ribbon sash over a dress or ballroom skirt.

Produced by Margaret Zainey Roux | Photography Courtesy of Lisa Frohlich

See more from Lisa Frohlich on her website or follow @hamptonsnystyle on Instagram.