From the bamboo-wrapped crystal jewels that Tina Chow designed with Warhol’s encouragement, to Chanel's crystal spectacular, to the decadent crystal bib that Tom Ford sent down his Fall 2012 RTW runway, crystals have long held a place in fashion as symbols of playful opulence and transformative energy. This season, they’re just as present as ever, with crystal-encrusted nose rings at Margielaimage-6240078-10451141, Mary Katrantzou dresses digitally printed with Swarovski crystals, and crystal-covered slippers image-6240078-10731106for the modern-day wanderer. Rather than occultist, fortune telling (there is a reason why clairvoyants use a crystal ball…properties of clear quartz are clarity of consciousness and the cleansing of negative energy), crystals are lux, modern1i103bosgmk5C8A66DE576AB77A7, and global. From gilded, vintage Venetian chandeliers to paintings  to Chakra balancing spa treatments where crystals are placed on the body, we find solace and healing in these sacred stones.
The sense of vitality that we derive from precious rocks—sometimes calming (blue kianite), other times stimulating (selenite)— is long-standing and singular. These gems bring us energy and clarity. They can be raw or faceted. They give us a form of elite energy, without being elitist. After all, crystals are accessible. Some say diamonds are a girl’s best friend—a representation of purity, abundance, perfection—but we also quite fancy our Opal (a source of creativity, inspiration, and imagination) and Topaz (success, true love, creativity and joy).
Crystals have been in use since Biblical times. They were kept for protection in ancient Egypt, by the Mayans to diagnose diseases; in ancient Greece, crystals got their name from “Krysos” which means “ice cold”—it was thought at the time that they were a form of ice that was so cold it would never melt. Today, we bring them with us as we wander from Shanghai to Big Sur, St. Lucia to St. Moritz. We find them all over the world. We gather clusters of pyrite in rural Washington; search the markets of Prague for deep green, ever-clarify moldavite. And as revitalizing forces, these crystals allow us to return to the state that we need, regardless of where we are in the world. To do feng shui on our bodies.
We place a moonstone, around our neck as a reminder of emotional, intuitive energy; wear turquoise  as a source of strength and grounding; and hold onto pyrite to cast away negative energy. These gems remind us of the purpose and properties we hope to maintain. Heal us and take us to another place. For Spring 2013, a runway trend was ruffles on clothes. It made us think about crystals and waves of energy, like the gentle, or sometimes dramaticimage-6240078-10451141, waves on the garments.


- Ashley Simpson

February 2013