How To: Wear Brooches Better

1st November, 2013

Brooches1During Fashion Week, I  wore Rebecca Taylor’s lovely, lightweight boucle jacket (one of my favorite pieces this season) with a giant beetle brooch pinned to the front. On Twitter and Instagram, several of you asked me if I had a good tip for wearing brooches without ruining the pieces they’d been pinned to ~ and in fact, I do! The secret is pairing them with foam makeup sponges, which can be found at any old drugstore.Brooches2I’ve been collecting vintage bug brooches since college, around the same time I discovered eBay and realized it was the best resource for tracking down really special specimens. 90% of my extensive assembly (a fraction of which is pictured above) has been culled from that site. As part of a recent collaboration with them, I curated several Collections of favorite things, and great bug brooches obviously comprised a whole board of their own.Brooches3So, how to wear them without pulling the fabric they’re pinned to? Simply attach one of those foam sponges inside the garment as you’re buckling the brooch. It’s as easy as can be, creates a clean look with even the heaviest of brooches, and protects your clothes from pulls or tears. Now go brooch without fear, my dears! Brooches4|TOP IMAGE| courtesy of Phil Oh for Rebecca Taylor |REMAINING IMAGES| shot by Austin Phelps

|IN THIS POST| Kelly wears Super sunnies, vintage brooch, Rebecca Taylor jacket, Diane Von Furstenberg top, Devi Kroell clutch and Donna Karan New York Body Pants |ERIN WEARS| The Row jacket and vintage brooch

  • Pingback: Great tip for wearing large brooches «  Krombholz Jewelers()

  • Sabrina

    This is such a great post! I’ve always wondered about this. Can you do more inside tip posts like this?

  • Sonja von Franck

    This is a great tip!! But what about the holes in the fabric? Do you just not let that bother you?

    • theglamourai

      Because the foam keeps the brooch from stretching the threads of the fabric, this technique leaves no holes!!


  • Royal Wang
  • Χριστίνα

    Such a nice post! Thank you for your tip!!!!
    This is Christina from

  • Marvelous! I love brooches…but they remind me of old ladies. This is such a great tip! 🙂

  • Costume De Rigueur

    I’ve been always looking for vintage brooches too all over the world, as my mum has an obsession with these little art pieces and there was always the same problem wearing them…forward it to mum…she will be veeery veeery happy!


  • I’ve always seen my mum wear brooches, but I don’t think I have worn any. Beautiful and stylish pictures, and great tip too!

    Mafalda ❤

  • Kate

    Vintage bug brooches…you’re my new favorite person.


  • ClassyChica

    Another great alternative is contacting and they will repurpose your fav brooches into magnetic ones – – no more pinning!

  • This is a genius idea! I love brooches. but tend to avoid them for this exact reason. Thanks for sharing, and love that beetle brooch 🙂

  • I’ve always loved brooches but especially love your beetle! I also love your jacket. So cute

  • Ariella

    Brilliant! Thank you! I’m lucky to have inherited a ton of brooches from my Grandmother that no one else appreciated ; ) Now, any tips to make them look more modern? Can I only wear with edgy jackets and blazers?

    • Sarara Vintage Couture

      I think you read my mind. I have been stocking the shop with vintage bug and critter jewelry for months. I think brooches are back!

    • theglamourai

      I think the modern approach with really vintage-looking brooches is to boldly wear a TON of them at once. The look is incredibly chic with a classic blazer and jeans.


  • Chantel

    I’m not a fan of brooches that look like insects, it freaks me out.

  • Nico

    What great tip! Thanks for shre it because I love wear brooches but not ruining the fabric is always a problem!

    ps: fab brooches!!

    lowbudget-lowcost Fashion Blog

  • Veronica

    What a great tip! I have a HUGE beetle brooch that I haven’t been able to wear for fear of ruining my clothes, and now it will be rocked! Also, that jacket. Must. Have. Now.

  • Grace

    I love this post! Vintage brooches are amazing. I love seeing tips on how to wear and style them.

  • I’m not going to lie, when I think of brooches, I think of my grandmother. But, wait a second, my grandmother did have impeccable style. This brooch is a modern twist on an old classic. It’s a new way to accessorize. I think I need to try it.

    –Susette of

  • ClothesandCamera

    Aww such cool brooches!


  • Brooches are so difficult to get right! Such a great post

  • Vicki Wilde

    These are so pretty and unique! Excellent suggestion on the foam pads, thanks!

    <3 Vicki

  • Great tip! And the brooches are awesome

  • such a good idea!!!!!!

  • Somebody from Somewhere

    looking gorgeous! so lovely!

  • AWolfinChicClothing

    LOVE this! What beautiful, buggy brooches. I have a question: Would you just cut the sponges smaller for a smaller brooch that may still be weighty? I’m definitely interested in the brooch trend and may ask for my first this holiday season! Was your spider brooch an EBAY find too? Such colors. Thanks for this tip! xx awoo

  • You wear broaches perfectly! Thank you for sharing, I’ve needed this post in my life… now time to raid the antique shops…

  • Luba

    What a great tip Kelly ! Thank you so much for it !

    XX Luba

  • Such a great idea. Might entice me to check out some brooches for the upcoming holiday season!

  • This is why I follow you, because you feature things unique to your style. I’ve started collecting vintage jewelry myself and its addicting. Now I have to add brooches to my search. Thanks Kelly!


  • sandrine jouss

    Oaou love the broches! it is very original, and you modernise it 🙂 J’aime!

    New on Taimemode:

    Jumper worn as a dress!


  • Rachael Robichaud

    Wow, thank you for the amazing tip! I’ve often wondered how you do it. I spend so much time getting a brooch just right that often times it isn’t worth the hassle. And then of course there’s the worry about holes and whatnot. But I love my little collection and now, I look forward to debuting them more often!

  • Beckerman Girls

    The bug brooches are NEXT LEVEL AMAMZZZZING! OMG Obsessed!!! Buggin out!!!! xoxo Love u sistas!

  • Charis

    genius idea! never thought of that. lovely brooch btw

  • Featherstone Vintage

    Stunning collection! I would love to know more about the beetle brooch. Is is signed?

  • French Robin Designs

    I love this post! Your brooches are beautiful and I love that you wear them with modern clothing. The foam makeup sponge tip is awesome. I will be sure to share. Thanks! Tammi

  • You should not tell a woman how to wear broaches anyway you did manage me to say that this article specially photographs are great.

  • lisa evans

    Great tips! I love that you love bug broaches too

  • I wonder if cotton pads would work the same way. Gotta try that too. Nice tip, thank you,

  • Leonie

    Did you know you can buy huge bugs in Taiwan they are so beautiful and expensive!

  • These are very interesting. Love them All. 🙂 I love designing brooches and beleive me these are very pretty ones.

  • This looks so
    great! It is so good to see you posting again! Ok so I’m guessing you mean
    the next recipe is the pie that Florida is known for????? I’m sooooo excited
    for that one!!!

TheGlamourai is a webzine produced by Kelly Framel, a multi-media creative director based in downtown New York (but constantly bouncing around the world). Part fashion blog, part glossy mag, part fantasy travel portal, it's your ultimate online destination for stylish daydreams. Tune in for inspirational editorials, beauty tutorials, outfit ideas, DIYs, jet-set travel tips and more!
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