Jewelry designs with movement are inherently alluring. Long swinging earrings, quivering “trembler” brooches, and charms dangling from bracelets catch the eye. Loose gemstones encased behind a transparent face are playful and fun. Similarly, sparkling diamonds or other gemstones that are designed to turn in their settings catch the light as well as plenty of attention.
Image consultants will tell you there’s a time and place for wearing these jewelry designs. When one is speaking at a podium or otherwise operating in a position of power is NOT one of them . Why? The jewelry visually distracts from the message of the wearer. The same jewelry is perfect for a social event, when it may well attract attention and serve as a conversation piece.
Other jewelry, by design, begs to be touched. Rings of components that twist together, like the Cartier Trinity rolling ring, may prompt the wearer to twist the ring consciously or unconsciously. Another example is the Y necklace designed as a length of chain or beads that pull loosely through a decorative ring worn in front. Certain of these designs do not stay put and require plenty of adjustment when the necklace is worn to keep it in place.
In the context of a poker game, playing with jewelry might well constitute a “tell”; in more usual circumstances, the repetitive motion may signal nervousness or excitement. In effect, a necklace can serve as worry beads; twisting a ring may sooth the wearer’s anxiety.
Some body language experts propound that twisting a wedding ring is a sign of attraction toward the person with whom the fidgeter is communicating. Indeed, twisting a ring or otherwise fiddling with any of one’s jewelry might be an indication of flirting. Here’s how WikiHow explains this phenomenon: ” When a woman is around someone that she’s interested in, her heart beats faster. This makes her feel nervous excitement. As a sort of outlet for that tension, she’ll twist her rings, play with her earring, or tug at her necklace.”
The latest design to feed the need to fidget appears in a collection of rings recently introduced by Piaget as part of its Possession line, profiled in the August 2015 issue of Marie Claire: “Incorporating its watchmaking expertise, the brand devised an innovative double-layer ring with a twistable outer band.” Jean-Bernard Forot, Piaget’s jewelry marketing director explains: “The design isn’t static like most jewelry–it’s live. Touching it is addictive.” “Just ask actress Jessica Chastain, the brand’s new international ambassador,” writes Carolina O’Neill for Marie Claire. “‘I’ve always loved turning rings on my fingers,’ Chastain says. ‘It puts me in a meditative state.’ And that’s the point. Says Forot: ‘Life is so fast-paced now, in a way, [twisting the jewelry] provides a relaxing break.’”
Fidgeting may have benefits: “Playing with the things on your desk may spark a lightbulb moment” writes Abigail Libers in the August 2015 issue of Self magazine. She quotes New York University researched Michael Karlesky, who found in a recent survey that 91 percent of people surveyed said they fiddle or doodle as they work. Karlesky says, “When you’re trying to work out a problem, doing something physical and rhythmic can help get the creative juices flowing.” Previous studies show “that sequential finger movements may activate large brain regions involved in creativity and memory.” Libers concludes: “Although nervous habits like biting your nails are also productive, spare your manicure by keeping a stress ball on your desk.” Or, I might, wear a piece of jewelry that is simply irresistible to touch.
As you twist that ring, I might wonder: Are you relaxing? Brainstorming? Or are you simply flirting with me?