Top jewellery designers tell you what you need to know about the handlet trend, from sourcing to wearing
hen Sarah Jessica Parker walked the red carpet at the New York City Ballet Gala last year, many eyebrows shot up over one piece of jewellery—what looked like a bracelet that didn’t quite make it all the way to Parker’s wrist. Today, the very same band is fast becoming a global trend. Call it what you will—handlet, palmlet, palm cuff or palm bracelet—it’s got the support of designers everywhere: from Dana Lorenz and Ana Khouri in the west to Manish Arora and Bansri Mehta in the country.
“Not everyone I know likes it. But I’d say the palm cuff is for a very fashion forward person, who is spunky and very out there,” says Mumbai-based Mehta who recently designed a series for her line, Bansri, one of which was picked up by actress Jacqueline Fernandez for her next film. “Though it may be a little inconvenient to wear, it is a statement piece and will be perfect for an after hour event,” she adds.
Designer Nitya Arora, of Valliyan in Mumbai, is not a big fan of handlets—she prefers the more comfortable haathphool. But that doesn’t mean she’s letting the trend pass her by. “I’m designing a line that includes a lot of geometric patterns, some whimsical pieces and some animal motifs. I’m especially fond of an art-deco piece that features a big gold ram’s head,” she says, adding that celebs like Sonam Kapoor and Priyanka Chopra can carry them off best.
There are plenty of options out there—from Arora’s colourful handlets with fruit danglers to Mehta’s slender ones with Swarovski crystals. “Cuffs are very person-centric. A bold, fashion savvy person can carry off a chunky piece, while someone who loves elegance should try the slender ones,” says Mehta, who loves the serpent palm cuff from her collection because it is “vamp, vixen and diva all rolled into one”.
Fit is also key, adds Arora. “They shouldn’t be too tight or too loose. You don’t want them flying off mid-gesture,” she laughs. And just because you have something on your palm, don’t let it stop you from adding on more accessories. “You can wear rings and bracelets with them. I love teaming midi rings with my cuffs,” concludes Mehta.
—Surya Praphulla Kumar