Stone and Strand makes beautiful, minimalist gold jewelry that looks good online and even better in person - here's how its dainty pieces stack up

Insider Picks Jewelry 2Hollis Johnson/Business Insider

  • If you're looking for affordable fine jewelry, specifically minimalist gold pieces, Stone and Strand should be at the top of your list.
  • It sells solid gold jewelry and conflict-free, fairly sourced diamonds and gemstones in a variety of beautiful, elevated styles.
  • We tried pieces from Stone and Strand to show you what they really look and feel like. They're even daintier than they appear online, and as versatile and luxurious as we expected.

Lately, we've been seeing and sporting a lot of dainty, minimalist gold jewelry. It's a popular look right now, but because it's so simple and versatile, it's also one of the few trends that will age gracefully as a smart, long-lasting investment.

There are a handful of online jewelry startups where you can shop these types of pieces - the tiny, sparkly, and highly covetable rings, necklaces, earrings, and bracelets made for luxurious, everyday wear. One we love is Stone and Strand.

stone and strand jewelry

Stone and Strand was founded by Nadine McCarthy Kahane, who conceived of the idea of a better high-end jewelry shop while pursuing her MBA at Wharton.

Stone and Strand makes and sells its own fine jewelry and also serves as a marketplace for other like-minded jewelry designers to sell their creations, which come in and out of the site on a constantly rotating basis.

The majority of its gold pieces are made with 14-karat solid gold, and all diamonds and gemstones used are 100% natural and conflict-free. With these high-quality materials, you can find surprisingly accessible prices. While they're not cheap by any means, the difference becomes clear, and the decision made obvious, when comparing Stone and Strand's prices to those of traditional fine jewelry brands.

The experience of shopping on Stone and Strand also feels more intentional, curated, and enjoyable. There's always something new to shop, and the designs cater to a variety of personalities, from the tough and rebellious to stylish traditionalists.

Insider Picks Jewelry 1

Like fellow brands Mejuri and Vrai & Oro, Stone and Strand seduces jewelry-obsessed shoppers with beautiful photos of its pieces. Hand models with slender fingers stacked with rings of various thickness and textures, carefully perched earrings and necklaces that perfectly catch the streams of light trickling in from a nearby window - you know what I'm talking about.

They're gorgeous, no doubt, and they give us a hint of the effect we expect when wearing these pieces: for our days to feel a little more elevated and special, whether we're simply heading into another day at work or dressing up for a special event.

We wanted to see, however, how Stone and Strand's jewelry pieces looked and made us feel in real life, not just through our screens. Could the same promises of beautiful, everyday luxury transfer over effectively, and on women who weren't jewelry models?

We tried an earring, ring, and necklace from Stone and Strand. See how they looked on us and why we loved the pieces below.

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7mm Chain Double Piercing Stud, $95

I don't have a lot of ear piercings, but I wanted to do something creative and cute with the two that I do have. This chain stud caught my eye because it was simultaneously delicate and edgy. I love how subtle it is, and it's such a reward when someone with a sharp eye notices and compliments it. Because of its small size, it can be a little tricky at first to put in, but the ultimate effect is worth the effort.

There are so many more pieces from Stone and Strand that I'd love to own because I can truly see myself wearing them all the time. I also have these double hoop earrings, which I wear at least once a week and are the only earrings I bring while traveling (when I don't want to pack anything I don't need). -Connie Chen, reporter

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Baguette Diamond Line Ring, $285

I have quite a few little gold stacking rings, and though I do have some hesitations about the price for how teeny tiny the diamonds are this one is still, by far, my favorite. I got it because my engagement ring features baguette diamonds, and I thought this would be a nice complement. I was right, it looks very cute next to my Heidi Gibson Oval Gatsby ring, if I do say so myself. I wear it every day.

However, I'd say it's only worth the cost if this is an easy-to-swallow price for you. If you're looking for a "bang-for-your-buck" kind of ring, this isn't it. It's very understated and dainty - worth it for those who like tiny diamonds, less worth it for those who want something that'll stand out. Oh, and beware the corners of the diamond arrangement - they can catch on delicate materials (and your partner's hands, if you hold them often).

-Sally Kaplan, editor

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Teeny Round Diamond Necklace, $215

I ordered the Teeny Round Diamond Necklace, and I really haven't taken it off since I first put it on more than four months ago. I prioritize finding everyday jewelry that looks high end, doesn't cost a fortune, and can wear well with virtually any outfit. In other words, subtle elevation. Stone and Strand nails that niche.

This necklace's stone is smaller and more dainty in person than I had expected, but that turned out to be completely fine. The price for quality is fair, and the slight-of-hand advantage of a faint bright glimmer atop your collarbone is exactly the upgrade I was looking for. -Mara Leighton, reporter

Shop fine jewelry at Stone and Strand

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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Picks team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at insiderpicks@businessinsider.com.

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