Love the Cartier LOVE bracelet, don't love the price
May 26, 2015 1:56 PM   Subscribe

I love the design and thought behind the Cartier LOVE bracelet (a relatively fitted gold bangle you can just leave on), but I can't stomach paying 7 grand for one. Help me find an alt!

I'm looking for an everyday white gold or platinum bangle to add to my everyday "uniform". I tried on the Cartier LOVE bracelet in white gold at the boutique and absolutely loved it- comfort and design were what I was looking for, but price was definitely not ($6750 for white gold with no diamonds).

I'm looking for a white gold or platinum, solid bangle that can be worn in the shower/to sleep, relatively close-fitting to my wrist but able to move around so I can move it down when I'm working on a laptop or computer. A nice, simple, classic look- either an alt to the LOVE bracelet, or something I can commission from someone. Within a $1k-$2k budget range. Hope me askme!
posted by raw sugar to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (14 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
relatively close-fitting to my wrist but able to move around so I can move it down when I'm working on a laptop or computer

I feel like that feature is going to be directly related to the size of the bangle, which can vary.

An Etsy search for "white gold bangle" in "Handmade" brings up a number of options, including this and this.

If the plain metal bangle (without the screw-head patterning like the Cartier version) will do, I bet one of those sellers would be able to make something custom for you (so you end up with a good size/weight/price).
posted by sparklemotion at 2:11 PM on May 26, 2015

Ah... in further examination of the Cartier bracelet, I realize that I missed the "screw on" feature -- basically it would be too small to go on and off of your hand.

Maybe something like an adjustable bangle like this or this?
posted by sparklemotion at 2:18 PM on May 26, 2015

I have a Kenneth Cole bracelet I got on sale from Amazon a month ago that is kinda similar. I can't remember the name of it but it was $20 discounted and Kenneth Cole. Definitely pretty, close fitting with that screw thing. Not real gold or anything because it's $20-40.
posted by discopolo at 2:30 PM on May 26, 2015

A simple hinged bangle like this or this or this (obviously not recommending those particular pieces, just the general idea). If you can't find one you like it should be pretty easy to commission.
posted by acidic at 2:30 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

There are plenty of affordable replicas, too. For example, check out Amazon (sorry, link shortcut isn't working on my iPad right now):
posted by bearwife at 3:41 PM on May 26, 2015

Best answer: I would go to a jeweller, tell them what you love about the Cartier bangle, and ask them to make one for you. I believe with the amount of gold required, you'll still need about $3000 in your budget.

I have the bangle. I wanted it for the same reasons you do - solid gold, so I can wear it literally every day of my life, close-fitting, so it doesn't get in the way, goes with everything I wear, etc.

After years of me staring wistfully at it, my husband ended up getting it for me in lieu of a year's worth of birthday/anniversary/baby gifts. He actually thinks in the end that it's been way more worthwhile than any other cheaper jewellery I've acquired, simply because of the cost per wear - I've already worn it every single day for over a year, and foresee wearing it for at least the next decade.

Before I got mine, I contemplated getting a jeweller to make one. I would've asked for:
- Plain solid (white) gold bangle
- Similar heft to the Cartier one (2.5mm thick, 5mm wide) for comfort
- Screw openings with ATTACHED screws so you can't lose them
- Sized for your wrist - mine allows a single finger to pass through

Some tips I wish I'd known when I got mine:
- To wear it on my NON-dominant hand, because it'll bump into less things, and scratch less
- To not worry about scratches because after a year or so, it truly becomes part of the patina
- To carry the screwdriver with me at all times (I chuck it in a pouch with my lip balm) because being able to tighten it anytime is very reassuring
- It DOES go through just fine at airport screening, though 50% of the time they'll request you remove it (I say it can't be removed, and then the machine is just fine with it)
posted by shazzam! at 5:43 PM on May 26, 2015 [4 favorites]

If you live near a Chinatown with jewellery shops, have a look and take a picture with you. Young Chinese love designer stuff but they also love a bargain and don't like fake jewellery. There was a Cartier ring I loved and i found a beautiful knockoff in a Chinese jeweller at a fraction of the cost. They'll also make you a custom order so ask if you find someone selling contemporary designer style stuff but not the bangle you want.

And generally, Chinese jewellers expect to haggle.
posted by stellathon at 7:06 PM on May 26, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: To echo shazzam!, the high price of gold would likely eat up most of your stated budget — platinum would absolutely blow it out of the water. That said, if you're ever in Dubai, quality gold replicas are just about everywhere for around half of what Cartier charges.

Dunno if it's the sort of thing you'd go for, but I also have all four metal variants of Lust Limited's Unix bracelets, and they're decent for the money. I find them + the MZ Wallace seamless bracelet much easier to wear because of the shape (oval instead of a circle).
posted by evoque at 8:09 PM on May 26, 2015

Chinese jewelers, Indian jewelers, Pakistani jewelers. Any of those would make you a good replica for a lot less. You may even find a preexisting design that you like.
posted by bardophile at 9:25 PM on May 26, 2015

Response by poster: Something like the MZ Wallace seamless bracelet evoque has is what I'm looking for- sadly that one is no longer available!!
posted by raw sugar at 9:39 PM on May 26, 2015

I saw that J.Crew offers this 14k gold half-round hinged bangle and this 14k gold hinged bangle.
posted by mbidi at 10:58 AM on May 27, 2015 [1 favorite]

I don't know how easy it is for an American (I'm presuming) to buy from Canadian stores, but Birks might be an alternative for you that comes in with good quality at a slightly lower price. Specifically I was thinking of this Roberto Coin bangle. I know it's still a bit pricy but once you factor in the US/CDN exchange rate, that should help ease the sting a bit.

I know Birks' US division operates under the Mayors name, but I don't know what they offer in inventory, or if they're in your region.
posted by sardonyx at 12:24 PM on May 27, 2015

Sorry. Just realized it was yellow gold and not white, but they may have a similar one in your preferred colour of metal.
posted by sardonyx at 12:25 PM on May 27, 2015

White version.
posted by sardonyx at 12:28 PM on May 27, 2015

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