mercoledì 28 dicembre 2016

Kate-Inspired Purchase Review: "Lauren" Pavé Leaf Earrings Replikate

The time just after Christmas and into January always tends to be very slow on the royal news front, so it seems like the perfect chance to indulge in a spot of replikating!
Today I bring you a new replikate review. This time we'll look at a replikate of the Kiki McDonough "Lauren" yellow gold pave diamond leaf earrings. The "Lauren" collection is inspired and dedicated to British ballerina Lauren Cuthbertson, a principal dancer with the Royal Ballet in London.

My replikate earrings come from The Looking Glass Shop on Etsy, they're the Kate Middleton Inspired Pave Leaf Earrings:

My readers will be familiar with the shop, as over time I've reviewed several of their pieces here on the blog, you can find more details on my Replikate Reviews page.

The Duchess debuted her Kiki earrings on 10 October 2015, when attending an engagement on World Mental Health Day on behalf of a charity she's closely involved with, Mind:

She's worn them several times since, most recently when she visited the Natural History Museum on 22 November 2016 on an engagement on behalf of another of her charities, Place2Be:

The original Kiki earrings are available in two sizes, regular, which measure 20 mm in lenght and 9 mm in width and retail for £2,200:

...and large, measuring 28 and 15 mm respectively and retailing for £3,900. Both are made of 18ct yellow gold and pavé-set diamonds:

While I'm aware that the general consesus seems to be that Kate owns the regualar size, I'm more inclined to think she has, in fact, the larger ones, as they're quite noticable in pictures from her various engagements, and it seems unlikely they could be the smaller ones, as they're tiny.
Having a look at this close-up on What Kate Wore, it does seem to me that the number of diamonds more closely matches the larger size earrings.
Still, Anna from My Small Obsessions maintains that she indeeed wears the regular size, and she's way savvier than me on things jewellery-related, so let's just say the doubt remains! 

There are a few replikates of this style out there, but most seem to feature a more decidedly heart-shaped pendant as opposed to leaf-shaped, so I was rather pleased to discover The Looking Glass Shop had come out with a decidedly leaf-y version. Even better, priced at $36 plus shipping, these, while not the cheaper out there, won't break the bank.
Shipping and handling times were perfectly reasonable, meaning my earrings, ordered on 5 December, arrived in plenty of time for Christmas. They came packaged in a no-frill recycled cardoboard box, as is typical for purchases from The Looking Glass.
So, on to the lowdown...upon first opening the box I really must admit I was significantly underwhelmed. The earrings are tiny! They seem to be a strange hybrid of the two sizes available at Kiki, measuring 23 mm in lenght, so somewhat in between the two, but with a leaf pendant just 9 mm wide as the smaller ones.

The listing at The Looking Glass Shop states that: "they feature 2 beautiful leaf charms with pave-set cubic zirconia stones. separated by 3 baguette stones. Small and delicate, they measure just under 1 inch in length and have nickle-free posts". I imagine the "3 baguette stones" is a copy and paste fail, as there are no such stones in this style, but there are in these earrings, also for sale in the same shop.
They are made of gold-plated brass, as per listing, and indeed the ear posts are hallmarked, as shown below, so should be suitable even if you have sensitive earlobes:

I was really disappointed in these, unfortunately. While they look to be well-made, and I've never been disappointed in the overall quality from The Looking Glass Shop, so I'm confident these too will last, the ear posts look extremely delicate, measuring just under 2 mm at the widest point on top, and will require careful attention when putting on or taking off.

The leaf pendant really is minuscle: I have long hair and the earrings practically disappear when I wear it down. I'd need to have my hair up for them to be visible. Measurements are comparable to the "Athena" earrings by Azuni London, also worn by Kate - I've included a side by side photo of the two so you get a better idea:

The crystals are beautiful, and the pavé setting seems to be of good quality, but the earrings are too small for my taste and, as I said, the ear posts seem very delicate. Personally, I think it would have been better if the width had also been stated on the listing, instead of just the lenght, to give a better idea.
Overall, I'd give them a 3 out of 5 and wouldn't recommend them, except if you prefer smaller earrings.

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