Spend a day counting the number of women you see wearing hoop earrings. (Never mind. You’ll lose track.)
But basic doesn’t mean boring. Reimagined this year in variations embellished with rows of seed pearls, enameled roses, gold snakes and dangling gemstones, hoops are having a moment. Just don’t call it a comeback.
“Trends change but they really never go away,” said the New York-based designer Jennifer Fisher, sometimes described as the “queen of hoops.” Her collection includes 20 variations, each available in three different metal finishes and three or four sizes.
“Hoops feel, in a way, like denim,” she said. “They’ve been around for thousands of years and culturally, they represent different things, but hoops are something you can’t have too many of.”
The ancients certainly thought so. “Hoop earrings have a pedigree going back at least 5,000 years,” said Kim Benzel, a curator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art who worked on “Jewelry: The Body Transformed,” a major exhibition that closed in February.
“Spectacular gold examples, some of them almost three inches in diameter, were worn by many of the women buried in the so-called Royal Cemetery at Ur in ancient Mesopotamia in 2500 B.C.,” Ms. Benzel said. “They were part of an impressive ensemble of jewelry that included gold hair ornaments and necklaces, creating a radiant surround for the head.”
For modern-day women seeking that golden glow, hoops — available in a virtually infinite variety of sizes, materials and price points — are an easy sell.
“You don’t have to wait for someone to buy them for you,” said the Los Angeles designer Adina Reyter, whose 17-year-old line has always included hoop earrings, as well as their smaller, crescent-shaped siblings, known as huggies. “They become part of your uniform.”
Ms. Reyter’s comment underscores fashion’s longstanding love affair with hoops, as evidenced by their appearance last fall on catwalks from New York to Milan.
Valentino, Derek Lam and Sonia Rykiel are a mere handful of the fashion houses that have interpreted the accessory for 2019 spring collections.
“Hoops bring this foxy look to any style,” the Copenhagen-based jeweler Orit Elhanati said.
She recently introduced a fine collection, Roxy Girl, alongside a fashion collection, X, both of which feature hoops. “It doesn’t matter if they are used to get that J-Lo street vibe, a punk thing or worn by a classic woman, hoops are empowering and playful and are here to stay.”
The timelessness of the silhouette helps explain why a new crop of jewelers has begun to experiment with the style. From his studio in Athens, the designer Nikos Koulis has heaped pearls and diamonds on hoops to create the ornate versions that appear in his new Lingerie collection.
“A hoop, in my case, is seldom a simple round hoop,” Mr. Koulis said. “It is usually an intricate blend of forms and sizes, using, for instance, triangular white diamonds next to round pearls or golden balls. I like to combine soft with edgier forms.”
The jagged hoops in the Elementa collection by Venyx, a futuristic-looking brand based in London that owes its cool-girl ethos to its designer, Eugenie Niarchos, bypassed curves for sharp angles. And the out-of-this-world Saturnation Hoops by Alina Abegg — part of the Berlin-based designer’s 2017 Cosmic Escape debut collection featuring extraterrestrial pieces “inspired by the mystery of our universe,” according to Ms. Abegg — include a South Sea pearl “planet” suspended on a delicate 18-karat rose gold chain.
In their purest form, however, hoop earrings honor the sacred geometry of the circle, a shape that has long resonated with the award-winning designer Fernando Jorge.
His Brilliant collection includes a pair of front-facing hoops accented with 3.34 carats of round brilliant diamonds in diminishing sizes.
“I was looking at diamonds and thinking about purity and perfect circles,” he said. “In the last three years, we have seen more and more of the circular earrings. But I don’t feel tired or exhausted by them.
“If my intuition coincides with something happening in multiple places,” he continued, “I just challenge myself even harder to make it my own.”