Mixing Metals: Can You Wear Gold and Silver Jewelry Together?

One of the most asked-about topics I get on the blog is about mixing metals in your accessories, and how to wear gold and silver jewelry together without looking like a fashion accident.

Mixing Metals: Can You Wear Gold and Silver Jewelry Together?

There was a day when I would have never mixed metals, but these days it’s not only totally acceptable to do so, it’s considered a stylish way to accessorize.

That said, there are definitely some tricks for mixing metals in a way that is current and classy.

5 Tips for Mixing Gold and Silver Jewelry and Accessories

#1. Wear at least one combined piece.

This is probably my top tip for mixing metals. If you have at least one combined piece, you can pretty much wear either metal anywhere else in your outfit, and the combined piece will tie it all together.

My favorite piece to do this with is my watch because I wear it pretty much every day, but you can also go with a mixed metal ring, necklace, bracelet, whatever!

I actually have a mixed metal ring I wear a lot, and also this mixed metal cuff (shown above.)

I’m also wearing this gold layer necklace in the picture above. It’s not a mixed metal piece, but it’s a nice 3-in-1 piece that you can take apart and wear each pendant alone or together.

You might also like this post: A Guide To Wearing Necklaces

Victoria Emerson does a lot of mixed metal cuffs as well. I like how she combines beads and stones and metals all in one piece.

That allows you to wear any of those metals elsewhere in your outfit, and they will all work together.

#2. Wedding bands don’t count.

Feel free to ignore your wedding bands and other “permanent jewelry”.

Definitely don’t let your platinum wedding band hold you back from wearing gold jewelry. Just overlook them and accessorize like they aren’t there.

In the picture above, I had on gold jewelry, but my wedding rings are obviously silver (or white gold, to be exact.) I never let that bother me.

Likewise, it’s okay to ignore most hardware (zippers, buckles, and hinges) on your clothing, unless it’s a focal point.

For example, I will take into consideration the silver buttons on my denim jacket, but I don’t necessarily let that dictate the metals I wear in my accessories.

My denim jacket in the picture above has silver hardware, and I wore gold jewelry with it, and it works fine.

#3. Layer bracelets or necklaces in different metals.

This has the same effect of wearing a mixed metal piece, and it allows you to wear either of the metal colors in a way that looks purposeful.

I’ll admit, I don’t use this trick very much. That is probably because I struggle with #4.

I prefer to buy mixed metal pieces that come together. It takes the guesswork out of layering, and I’m all about making it easy!

#4. Keep the styles similar.

When mixing metals, keep the styles cohesive with the outfit. So if the outfit is casual, keep the jewelry casual as well.

If the outfit is formal, conservative, edgy… make sure your accessories carry the same aesthetic.

This is probably the most important thing to remember, and the place where it’s easy to go wrong. You definitely want to pay attention to the aesthetic of the pieces you’re wearing together — and this goes for accessorizing all the time, not just when mixing metals.

When I layer necklaces or bracelets, I usually wear pieces from the same brand. I realize this is kind of cheating… a true fashionista can mix brands and make them all work together, but I like how piece from the same brand have a similar style and tone of metal. For example, I often combine delicate Gorjana necklaces as shown in the outfit above.

#5. Repeat each color metal at least once.

Even when wearing a mixed metal piece, I like to repeat each metal color elsewhere in my outfit at least once. This also helps make the metal mixing look more intentional. And remember, shoes and handbags count too.

In the outfit above, I was struggling because the blouse had gold buttons, and I wanted to wear these silver wedges. I carried a bag with silver hardware because the shoes are more visible than the buttons on the blouse, but when I put a solid silver necklace on with the top, I didn’t like how it looked against the gold buttons.

So I switched to a mixed metal necklace, and I also wore a mixed metal bracelet (and my trusty mixed metal watch) so I felt like all of the metals looked intentional and worked together.

At the end of  the day, I’m kind of a plain Jane when it comes to accessorizing. When I find pieces that work well together, I tend stick with those combos as much as possible, but writing this post has inspired me to experiment a bit more with mixing and matching.

I hope it inspired you too!

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23 Responses

  1. Rose gold has become popular as well and it’s really pretty when mixed with silver and gold. I like to wear rose gold when I have blush color in my outfit, and it’s really pretty with navy or gray. We typically reach for the silver pieces when we wear black or gray/silver, but I’d encourage adding the rose gold. Thanks for sharing your day job with us!! ; ))

    1. Yes, rose gold is pretty — and I also like deeper black and gunmetal metals mixed in. I don’t usually buy those pieces individually but like when Victoria Emerson and others combine them with silver and/or gold in their layered looks.

  2. Loved this post!  I have learned so much about fashion and trends from you!  I feel much more knowledgeable and confident about mixing my metal jewelry now. I have to admit, I rarely wear bracelets however. I always feel like they’re in my way.  But I really like the idea of using mixed metals in a bracelet to tie together the other metals in the clothing, accessories, etc. 

  3. I really struggle with this…I think my OCD tendencies don’t help 😉 but I promise to be more adventurous. Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. This is a great post – so much helpful information!

    For years, I’ve stuck with silver/platinum/stainless steel jewelry because I have cool coloring (a “summer”) and I thought I was supposed to.

    It’s good to see that you can mix it up, and it works!

  5. Wow, this post was fantastic! I learned so much and easily can apply the information when I am adding accessories to an outfit. Thank you so much, Jo-Lynne!

  6. Growing up when I did, everything was supposed to match and I’m slowly trying to get away from that. You’ve been inspirational!  My purses don’t have to match my shoes, I can wear black with brown and I have been trying to mix metals in my jewelry lately.  This post is super helpful. Now, if I can learn to ignore the buttons on my jackets!

    1. LOL! Honestly, I am happiest when the buttons and all metals anywhere on my person match… unless I’m intentionally mixing. But I’m trying to “get over it”… progress over perfection, right? 🙂

  7. Great post! Necklaces are always the last piece of jewelry I think about. I’m a bracelet girl! Need to work on this. Thanks, Jo-Lynne 

  8. This post was so fun and I learned a lot. This is one of those posts that made me look at what I have (kind of a “shop your closet” approach) first before buying more. Now I’ll know better how to use what I have and what to look for when shopping! Thank you for another great post! 

  9. This is really helpful. I tend to overthink it or doubt myself when accessorizing. These tips make so much sense!

  10. I’ve been eyeing your Tory watch ever since it was included in the Anniversary Sale. I’ve had an ESQ for over 17 years, and it is mixed metal as well. I didn’t bite the bullet and buy it during the sale, but now I’m thinking I might need to in the future. Do you know if Nordstrom has a sale that focuses on jewelry anytime throughout the year? Are you happy with your purchase? The face is a little bigger than what I currently have, but I think that looks higher quality. I just don’t want it sliding and moving around on my wrist – which can probably be taken care of with having links removed. Great post!

    1. I don’t know that they run jewelry specific sales, but fashion pieces (like TB watches) will go on sale as they’re being phased out to make room for newer styles. They don’t really go out of style, though, so that’s the best time to buy.

  11. This is a very helpful post!  Overall, I think I do pretty good, but where I’d fall short is with keeping all of my jewelry casual, like my clothes.  I have two very expensive diamond tennis bracelets Larry bought for me many years ago.  We no longer get really dressed up, so if I follow the rule of keeping my bracelets casual, I’d never get to wear those two bracelets.  ☹️

    1. I would say a diamond tennis bracelet is an exception to the rule — that is something (like diamond studs or pearls) that sort of transcends the rules. It’s a classic piece that you could wear every day, with everything from jeans to a cocktail dress.

  12. I have a black blouse with small white floral print. It features pearl buttons. Should I wear gold or silver earrings? Wearing pearl earrings seems too costumey. Thankyou.

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