Privilege Blog

A Mother’s Day Memento (Don’t You Kind Of Want To Spell It “Momento?”) In The Making

On Mother’s Day, I’ve always given my mom either flowers or jewelry. That is, once I started giving her presents – we didn’t celebrate when I was young. She still loves flowers and jewelry. On the other hand, maybe a meal together would be better this year. Cupcakes.

As I’ve said before, while I don’t feel that I need presents on the day, I do like the occasion, the recognition, the celebration. And my kids have heard me and are very good about cards and calls.

If I did want an enduring present, it’d be jewelry. It so easily becomes a memento, something to sort through with grandchildren. Let the chains run through our fingers, hold up a pendant for a closer look.

One might give the spectacular, were one so resourced. I’ve been admiring Alex Soldier’s cuffs for a couple of years now. Such a unique way with metals. Here, silver and gold are worked to look like faceted diamonds. Prices start at $2100. Dragons.

Alex Soldier Dragon Cuffs on whtie

Jewels in spirals. Stand out.

4 Stone Cuffs HR

Or maybe a more intimate evidence of craft? Lee Wiser McIntosh has been known to comment here, and I love what she does with river pearls and rough diamonds, at Katura Design. This piece is $1525. EDITED TO ADD: Lee got in touch with me to say we can use the coupon code HeartMomNow for a 15% discount. (This post was an (un-monetized) surprise for her:)).


Or, our friends at Mark deFrates are having a 15-20% off sale for friends and family, through June 1. Perhaps as a symbol of coming back from hardship, a phoenix. The large one, $800. Mention Privilege in your order for the discount. You can buy a smaller one if that works better for you.


Finally, these pieces from Blue Nile. Nicely designed, in precious metals. The traditions not yet in place. A three-strand gold chain, with circle stations $395. Or this one, more opulent but on sale for 40% off.

3 Strand Gold Chain With Circle Stations

It’s the Then Some I look for – the little click, the in-drawn breath, at a piece that looks just right — and then some. I think this pearl and sapphire pendant is just so pretty. $425.

Pearl and Sapphire Necklace

But guess what? We have a giveaway, a very generous one, thanks to Blue Nile. A white gold and diamond bar necklace. White gold. Discreet, sparkly, modern. With blue jeans, a v-neck tee, and sneakers; atop a low cut, fitted black dress – you choose.


Blue Nile Diamond Bar NecklaceSparkle. In case I hadn’t yet made that point.


In situ, last night in San Francisco, with a gray tee and Adidas bomber jacket. As one does.

If you’d like to enter the giveaway, tell us the story of how you might wear this necklace, and with what kind of earrings. Would you match it with these? Or complement less directly, with these? Pair with something else entirely? I’ll draw a winner on Tuesday May 3rd. That will give me time to mail the necklace to you before May 8th. And if you’d rather shop yourself, Blue Nile has 15% off on certain items right now. Code MOM2016.

I know Mother’s Day doesn’t make everyone’s heart swell. Maybe you’ve not been able to become a mother, maybe your own is a source of distress. In that case, let’s say this is a present from a friend, for no particular reason other than because.


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97 Responses

    1. @dottoressa,
      Would wear this beautiful piece this Mothers Day with a simple white tee.. rolled up jeans, white NB tennies with the small white gold hoops my mom gave me about 20 years ago!! Missing my mom this Mothers day. Lost her 6 years ago to breast cancer this November.

  1. Love those dragon cuffs!
    The giveaway necklaces looks great with and tshirt. A little sparkle to dress up your day. I would add my favorite, silver squash-blossom earrings to round out the look.

  2. YOU have GIVEN NAMES To different types of DRESSING!I had a commenter on my BLOG telling me SO……….WHERE DO I FALL?
    DO TELL……….P L E A S E!!

  3. Lisa. Never have I known someone who is so suited to a dragon cuff as you are.

    You need it.

    And last nights outfit sounds like home to me. Everyday sparkle is where it’s t.

  4. For myself, I like your styling method best. But I’d probably loan it to my daughter to wear with her prom dress, a strapless navy blue ball gown. Her grandmother has already promised her sapphire and diamond earrings to the project. Prom attire: it takes a village. :-)

  5. I’m not signing up for this one since I was the winner not so long ago of one of your beautiful gifts to your readers. BUT, this design gives me some inspiration. A couple of days ago, my mother gave me a birthday gift—her 40 year old diamond watch. Very dated–so she suggested that I take the diamonds and have them restyled. This necklace style would be a possibility! So thank you for this idea!

  6. I like that necklace for a quiet everyday statement, but think it would dress up nicely as well. I have some (real) zircon earrings that would be happy to meet it. :-)

  7. I would wear that necklace with a black tank and denim jacket, appropriate for my work as a professor and equally appropriate for dinner with my husband and my three sons (and two daughters-in-law)!

  8. Gorgeous necklace! I’d wear it with my very small emerald cut diamond studs,white jeans, a tee and espadrilles, though my neck wouldn’t look half as good as yours.

  9. As my “uniform” is different than yours, Lisa, inevitably I would wear this necklace with a white button down, dark skinny jeans, and black flats. Probably with simple tiny diamond studs. Maybe even layered with a very thin gold chain. Have you done a post on mixing metals? I’m currently experimenting; I have permanent yellow gold upper ear piercings that I used to always match, but lately my little collection of silver and white gold has started to look lonely.

    I hope you have a great Mother’s Day!

  10. Oh, those dragon cuffs! Be still my heart.

    The necklace? Would wear with what I have on today: jeans, chelsea boots, a striped scoopneck tee, and a black leather jacket (the Vince one we both love so much). Large but delicate silver oval hoop earrings.

  11. Wow. I’ve never owned diamonds. If I won, I probably wouldn’t take it off, at least for awhile. I don’t wear earrings because I never had my ears pierced. Maybe out to dinner with black jeans, a silk T-shirt, and black slides?

  12. I have the perfect LBD that this would be perfect with the gorgeous necklace. Top it off with some diamond studs and it would be simple, elegant and perfect!

  13. I think I’d wear it all by itself, without other jewelry, with a simple scoop neck tee, jeans, and booties or even sneakers…just a little sparkle near the face!

  14. Love your picks, but especially the giveaway necklace!

    I would wear it with a linen v-neck tee, straight blue jeans and flat chelsea boots. And a leather biker jacket. Somehow, sounds the most appropriate outfit, no? For a lazy Sunday brunch, to see a movie, to catch up over a cup of coffee – actually, to work even, as I am lucky to work in an academic environment, so no dress code whatsoever (except not looking corporate or too feminine, whatever this might be).

    Or, perhaps, with a simple gray dress, to visit a gallery, to have a lunch in our favourite upscale place (thus only lunch – a sandwich and a salad is about all I can afford there).

    Oh, and no earrings! Diamond studs are somewhat suspicious of being too matchy, and anything else is not delicate enough for the necklace. In fact, no other jewellery, except for a watch and a wedding ring.

    Have a wonderful Mother’s Day!

  15. Mother’s Day is celebrated by taking mom out for a fancy tea…little sandwiches and scones with bone china cups and saucers. We dress up!

    I would wear that necklace with my casual Gap U neck tee and NYDJ rolled up at the bottom and my yellow walking shoes…it would add some sparkle to a very simple OOTD.

    The word Cupcakes just makes one think of a party!
    Momento or memento…yes one does lean towards the first spelling!

  16. …with jeans, of course. Probably with a button down and loafers, my uniform. Add diamond studs, a gift from my mother before she died.

  17. Sweats, cashmere tee, fuzzy socks. Would add that certain je ne sais quoi, n’est pas ?

  18. That’s a fabulous piece. I’ve been looking for a simple but fancy necklace to wear with all my tunics and sandals. I’d pair it with a simple diamond stud.

  19. Perfecto! I’d wear it with one of my several black top/skirt combos to play tennis in. With the small diamond huggie hoops, probably. Love!

  20. Lissa – you are just the very best! Your posts are wonderful and so elegantly written! I’m so glad I know you even in this little way!

    Thank you so much for the inclusion! We LOVE making jewels for mothers and we make many. Grown kids and Moms themselves come up with the best ideas for custom pendants – or rings.

    Drop us a line ( and I’ll email you a quote (if it’s custom) or a link with the discount included. Or just go ahead and buy and I’ll refund the discount.

    Happy Spring! It feels like a good one.


  21. Now that I am retired I would wear the necklace with an everday soft fleece top and small white gold ball earings.

  22. Fantastic necklace. I love your iteration and mine would be similar: white tee, silky black jogger pants, slouchy cardigan, flatform sandals and a simple pearl stud.

  23. Cupcakes and dragon cuffs, love it.
    The giveaway necklace is wonderful; the elegant simplicity and clean lines are so easy to wear with with so many things. Though 56, I am dressed most days in jeans, v-neck tees, and if not sneakers, then low, strappy sandals…so that is truthfully what I would be wearing with the necklace. I love to wear grey. Touches of black. I loved looking at the links of earrings! I checked out “these?”, checked out “with these?”, and finally in something else “entirely”, chose the Tanzanite Hinged Hoops in sterling, although if I could afford them, would pick the Blue Nile Studio Diamond Floral Drop Earrings in 18k Rose Gold. Often, in my case, things that “don’t go”, go for me. I rock it
    I also have some intriguing Labradorite earrings that would cast their iridescent shimmer quite fetchingly. My beautiful husband, years ago, gave me a pretty Our Lady of Guadalupe medal to wear, to watch over me, so though I am neither Mexican, nor Catholic, she might hang on a longer silver chain below the exquisite diamond and white gold necklace, quite often. Another thing which doesn’t go, and yet would, very happily.
    Thank you.

  24. I teach at an all girl school. They NOTICE what I wear. I would wear this necklace with a simple black jersey dress, tights and black ankle boots.
    But the reason I love the necklace is because it reminds me of a ring I wear every day. It is a simple gold channel cut band of diamonds. The diamonds are from an intimidating cocktail ring of my mother’s. After she died , my sister handed to me saying “Here, you deserve this after all the work you did” I had it reset. I love it. I wear it every day. And in a special way it reminds me of all the work I did.

  25. Black knit dress (or drapey top), heels with sparkle, hair up, no earrings, to provide a bit of extra confidence for those semi-formal small-talk-y evening reception events that are so often the bane of introverts.

    But I think you carry it better than I would!

  26. I would wear it as I sweat and grit my teeth during meetings about how her school is failing my daughter. I would wear it with a deep purple wrap dress I purchased after we sold our house and I could splurge on a $250 dress with no occasion in mind. I would wear it over the black cashmere sweater my dear Aunt Jeanne gave me for Christmas before her daughter died and she stopped shopping. I would let my daughter wear it for an out with family night, letting her bask in the glow of a beautiful necklace.

  27. What a joy it would be to wear a simple sparkly bit like that. I have kind of had it with statement necklaces. I generally gravitate towards pearls in a single strand if simple is needed but the rest of my necklaces often feel like they are overdone in my opinion.

  28. Love the dragon cuffs. Jewelry is the one place where I never mind a little drama. Adore the giveaway necklace. Right up my alley especially for everyday wear. I’d pair it with the carved ball stud earrings or the gold and white two tone hoops. My summer uniform would be either slim Capri pants with a Gretchen Scott tunic, or a light knit dress by James Pearse, Ralph Lauren or Talbots. Jack Rogers Navajo sandals because they actually fit over my arches. Or I would be in a v neck tee and short knit skirt. Oh, I do love summer. Happy Mother’s Day to you and to your mom. My husbands father just passed away. He was a 91 year old Alzheimer’s patient. Sad to lose him, the last and final goodbye. He would have been my father in law for forty years this coming Sunday. He loved cupcakes too. ;)

  29. I would wear the necklace with black capri leggings, drapey grey shark bite hem t-shirt , sliver sandals and small silver hoop earrings.

  30. So many interesting possibilities for such a beautiful necklace! I would wear it with a white silk/cotton scoop neck tee, dark indigo jeans and navy ballet flats. So much elegance for just about any activity. Brilliant.

  31. The necklace would complement my wedding ring & my mother’s wedding ring, which I wear on my right hand–both set in white gold. Earring-wise, it would look great with my simple pearl studs with white sapphire accents, & it wouldn’t compete with my turquoise Navajo cuff. My usual jeans & button-up or t-shirt, & it would dress up nicely too.

  32. I would wear this with my lab coat at the cancer center – I would give it to the first patient who needed a moment completely apart from what they are facing right then…and have them play it forward to the next woman who needed it. We’ve done this with a special robe for our breast cancer women to pass to another woman they meet in the treatment waiting room. A necklace would be a great idea.

  33. I’d wear it with a pretty dress on Mother’s Day, to brunch at the assisted living with my mother in law, and then featured in a picture posted on “The Facebook” so my mom can see from her home in Florida. I’d wear it with the diamond earrings my hubby gave me on the occasion of the birth of our second daughter. I’d wear it realizing that Mother’s Day is about so many relationships. – all of them rich, complicated and priceless.

  34. I’d give this to my mother. She’s had a difficult year and I find myself constantly trying to find ways to make her smile. I can’t imagine what she’ll pair it with. I’ve never agreed with her style, but I’m now starting to appreciate it, just because it’s HERS. Thanks for hosting. :)

  35. I’d wear a black v necked tee shirt, boyfriend faded jeans, cuffed, a wide black belt, black vans and a white linen blazer with a funky pin on the lapel. Earrings I’d wear would be small diamond hoops. Alternatively I’d give it to my daughter who is brave and accomplished! Thanks for offering this! I have been reading your blog for a while now and enjoy it!

  36. I would wear this lovely necklace with tiny diamond studs inherited from my grandmother and my solitaire engagement ring which was my husband’s grandmother’s. I am not usually such a wear-all-the-sparkle-at-once kind of girl, but this will be my first M-day. I gave birth to my son recently, and so am leaning on grandmotherly wisdom and sparkly inspiration to get through the first weeks of sleep deprivation and wild hormone swings. Likeliest outfit: blue chambray button-up top, maternity jeans, brown Frye mid-calf boots, field jacket, and a baby in a sling.

  37. Gorgeous. I’d wear it with a dusty plum v neck tee, Levi boyfriend jeans rolled at the cuff, Frye ankle boots, and a tall, teenaged son on each arm.

  38. Lisa this is gorgeous! I would wear it with black jeans and long sleeved white tee, my simple diamond studs. Of course I see it becoming a classic to wear with almost anything in my wardrobe! Stunning!

    The Arts by Karena

  39. Beautiful necklace! I’d wear it with my small white gold and diamond hoop earrings and jeans, a white or black tee and ballet flats.

  40. Great necklace! I can imagine myself wearing it so many different ways. It would look great with a shirt with a pretty collar or a simple tee, like you did. It would look great with most of my black tops and black dresses. I think it would be a great necklace to take on a trip as it would go with everything in my suitcase. I usually keep my earrings simple, but since the necklace is so delicate it would be the perfect occasion to bring out some of my statement earrings.

  41. I would wear that necklace with jeans, a linen v-neck tunic, flats, and simple white gold & diamond huggie earrings. It is lovely!

  42. Such interesting comments because it’s a necklace that would go with anything, anywhere, anytime, so as people describe what they would wear they are most likely describing their best personal style. I recently finished knitting an oxblood colored lace dress which I’m planning to wear with a black silk slip to a wedding next month. My usual beaded necklaces are too clunky, I’m betting this delicate necklace would be perfect.

  43. I’d probably wear this with a black v neck, dark blue jeans, gray/teal plaid blazer, for temping. No earrings because I have no piercings!

    But also if I got this I’d probably give it to my mom, who would wear it with her dark blue/purple dress, diamond patterned tights, and black boots. And pearl drops. Big oval ones. Very beautiful.

  44. Beautiful necklace! I’d wear it with a soft white t-shirt, boyfriend jeans and strappy flats. And my moonstone stud earrings.

  45. Oh my, I love that necklace so much!!! I would wear it with a white blouse, blazer and a pair of dress pants and it would preferably be when my husband takes me out for Mother’s Day dinner.

  46. I’d wear this necklace with everything! It is perfect for everyday sparkle! Skinny jeans, navy v-neck tee, striped pink flats. Or a black 3/4 sleeve tee, black pants, heeled espadrilles with black and white snakeskin tops. Simple white gold small hoop earrings is all I’d need. Thanks for sharing!

  47. While I think jewelry is a lovely way to celebrate one’s mother, I notice that, more recently, me and my sister have drifted towards experiences. When you’ve been a mother for 30+ years (or decades longer!) my mother has made it clear that its the moments she remembers. So: last year a family trip to a historical lighthouse out in the outer archipelago. This year my parents escape to the French Riviera, so on behalf of myself and my sister I upgraded their flight out to business. Secretly. They will know tomorrow.

    I wish you a lovely mother’s day (over here it is celebrated next weekend).

  48. Great piece! In my retired life I would happily wear it with a white tank, chambray sleeveless shirt, and jeans. It is a put it on and leave it on sor of piece, no? Earrings? Matching studs. Thank you , Paula

  49. What a beautiful necklace! I would wear it with Levis and a crisp white tee, or maybe with my simple black sheath dress and pumps. Tiny diamond studs or perhaps white gold huggie style hoops would be a nice accompaniment. I love how it appears both delicate and strong at the same time. My Mom died on Mothers Day two years ago and since then, I have a sense of dread in approaching this particular holiday. This necklace reminds me of her, seemingly delicate, yet very strong and always beautiful.

  50. I would wear this with a white Everlane v neck and my new muji jeans. Mephisto Helens in silver on my feet. I would enjoy biking around and feeling fancy!

    Share the love for the jeweled cuffs, so dramatic and rich.

  51. The cuffs…they are amazing! I’d love to wear one on each wrist, ala Chanel with her Verdura’s.
    I’d wear the necklace with clothes that are simple, yet refined. As always your writing is beautifully poignant. Mothers Day is tough for me.

  52. I’m not sure whether I can enter, being in Australia – but just in case, here goes.

    I would wear this beauty with a navy and polka dot Uniqlo shirt tucked into black ponte pants, with a pair of black patent pointy flats.

    The buttons on the shirt make it breast-feeding friendly, and the elasticised fabric of the pants is delightfully comfortable, notwithstanding the slim silouhette – but all in all it would be a load more confidence-boosting than a grubby old flanno and a pair of paint stained running shorts. This is my third Mother’s Day and my first as a mother of two – with both my 2 year old and my 3 month old facing surgery in the coming months, I need all the confidence boosting I can get.

  53. I would wear it t with my black V neck linen tee shirt and a high waisted flare skirt. Or with my men’s style blue and white striped Oxford shirt and white pants. Or with my olive green moto -style jacket, navy scoop neck tee and boot cut jeans. In short, with almost anything. J’adore.

  54. I’d wear that necklace every day, just tossed on casually with my work clothes, gym clothes, everyday wear. It would go with everything, a touch of sparkle but not over the top. Then, next year, I would give it to my precious daughter for her college graduation. My mother gave me her diamond earrings for my college graduation. (And, well, i have 2 daughters… need 2 gifts!) My daughter would wear it with Gap jeans, flowy t-shirt, boots, and a big smile as she sets out to change the world with her college degree in hand.

  55. It is a lovely necklace, so simple and perfect. I would wear it with a white tee, and all-any of my jeans. I would feel “privileged” to win this!
    Thank you for your wonderful blog. Suz

  56. What a beautiful necklace. If I won I would give it to my friend who has been a rock to me recently with my husband and father ill in hospital. and she would wear it with a smile!


  57. My sweet little 19 month old daughter is in a grabby phase and loves sparkle, so I’d wait for a special dinner with my husband to put this on. Probably would wear it with a fun tank top and white jeans, sitting on the porch of our favorite seafood restaurant, overlooking the river. As for earrings? The same ones I wear every day. Plain dangly pearls. Not too interesting, but I can pretend to be the girl with the pearl earrings… the closest I get to being artsy.

  58. I would wear this necklace with dark denim skinny jeans, pointy purple flats, a white tank, and a black cardigan thrown on top because I am always cold. Earrings would be tiny silver leaf studs or freshwater pearl drops. My mom died 15 years ago and my husband and I are struggling with infertility, so I am usually melancholy on Mother’s Day. I suspect this year will be more of the same, but I shall put on a brave face to celebrate my wonderful mother-in-law and my not-at-all-wicked stepmother. A sparkly new necklace won’t make it all better, but it wouldn’t hurt either.

  59. I would wear it, most likely, with a navy t-shirt and jeans, which seems to be all I wear these days. But I know it also would be fantastic with something, ahem, a little more put together. As for earrings, I wear thin, small gold hoops everyday, so I would hope the necklace and earrings get along!

  60. I usually wear some variation on jeans and scoop neck tee, or sometimes a linen popover shirt in the summer. My little dragon earrings (currently my favorite pair) would look nice with this necklace. I like to think the dragons whisper words of wisdom in my ears, now that I am motherless and miss my wise female elders (it’s been 7 years, but often still stings).

  61. I’d wear the lovely necklace with white gold ball earrings…and a flannel shirt as I plan to spend time finding patio planters for my Mom. It’s become our tradition to outfit her porch for the summer on Mother’s Day each year.

  62. Cashmere sweater over a tank. Navy. Washed jeans, loose-fitting, with a small rolled cuff at the ankle. Ballet flats. A rocking bag, probably Coach (I am not in the LV, BV, Hermes range). No earrings; my mom wouldn’t let me get them pierced til I was 18 and by that time it seemed kind of rebellious NOT to get them pierced. Such a beautiful piece!

  63. Thinking of you. My husband and I gave up our struggle with infertility and now focus on other things (including each other!) but I avoid church on Mother’s Day because, yes, it still stings. Blessings.

  64. Oh, and the earrings! (I’m normally much better at reading instructions, my apologies! Sleep deprivation is a terrible thing…) They would be my beloved Paspaley pearls – huge south sea pearls on white gold design hooks. An exceptionally generous wedding present from my parents-in-law, they instantly make me feel at least 90% more beautiful.

  65. I would wear this beautiful necklace to the wedding of my wonderful son and daughter-in-law-to-be with black pearl earrings from my wonderful husband for our 30th anniversary.

  66. Lisa, Thank you for this generous giveaway. Such a beautiful simple design. I would wear it with casual, simple attire like denim and a tee, as many mentioned. I would wear it with delicate sliver hoop earrings or open styled earrings. Thanks again. Happy Mothers Day. Leigh

  67. Oh lovely. I would wear this necklace to my sister’s October wedding in Manhattan. Why you ask? Because weddings are about family. Not only will I be there with the two children who have made me a mother, but also with my elderly mum who I only see once per year due to the international spread of our family. Thank you for considering me. I’d certainly wear it with joy in my heart and share with my son or daughter one day.

  68. And the earrings – like many, I forgot to answer. I blame sleep deprivation from my one-year-old. But I would wear a pair of white gold and diamond huggie hoops that were a Valentine gift from my mum in 2001. 15 years later, I still wear them near daily.

  69. Lovely necklace to be worn with just about anything. Probably paired with big earrings – my favorite. Tall ladies need substantial accessories

  70. I would like to wear it with either a sheer black or white cotton summer blouse with a wide round neck and billowing sleeves to showcase the diamond necklace. For earrings, I could wear it with a diamond drop earrings, if i have one, or to put more focus on the necklace itself and highlight its design (which is gorgeous, by the way), i could simply wear a small/tiny diamond stud earring in princess cut in white gold. To complete the look, i could wear either a black or white pants depending on the color of the blouse, a black clutch and shoes. This would be perfect for a mother’s day dinner! On everyday basis, this will look amazing on t-shirts and jeans!

  71. The necklace is very pretty. It’s specially alluring to me because my child is almost four, and I feel that delicate jewelry is once again a safe option from sweet, greedy hands.
    I would wear it with everything from jeans and tees to delicate floral dresses.
    As a way to add a bit of light to the face and edge to the look, I like the idea of pairing it with hair pulled back and diminutive diamond studs like these:
    Thank you!

  72. I would wear the necklace with a simple casual outfit…something scoop neck or v neck to allow the simplicity of the necklace to shine. I would prefer earrings that are shorter dangles or button style.

  73. I’d wear that necklace with just about anything in my mostly minimalist wardrobe! With small diamond studs for formal occasions, with no earrings at all the rest of the time.

  74. I would love to wear this lovely necklace to my beautiful daughter’s wedding on May 27th!

  75. I would wear that gorgeous necklace with the earrings given to me by my husband when our daughter was born, a white t-shirt, and jeans. And with everything else – it is so pretty!!

  76. I loved this so much, I ordered it for my own mom. She’s going to look so pretty in it. Thanks.

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