thumbnail of Tennis Bracelets, What Are They? Why That Name?

Tennis Bracelets, What Are They? Why That Name?

by Frederic Vervaecke

Update:

  1. What is a Tennis Bracelet?
  2. Why is it Called a Tennis Bracelet?
  3. History of Tennis Bracelets
  4. What Kind of Tennis Bracelets Are There?
  5. How Much is a Tennis Bracelet?
  6. Metal Type
  7. Diamond Quality
  8. Brand and Designer
  9. When Should You Wear a Tennis Bracelet?

Thumbnail: The inspiration of the tennis bracelet "Chris Evert Lloyd" in 1983 by El Gráfico N° 3322

Tennis bracelets are famous in the field of fashion and sports, especially among tennis players. These beautiful pieces of jewelry not only enhance the style of their owners but also have a history and personality of their own. But what exactly are they, and why are they called "Tennis bracelets"? This article will unravel more about tennis bracelets, their history, categories, prices, and when to wear them.

What is a Tennis Bracelet?

A tennis bracelet is a stylish jewelry item that is made of a single row of round diamonds or other gemstones linked together by a thin strand of gold or platinum. The design is simple and unpretentious, which allows it to be worn on any occasion and in any situation. Usually, the stones used in tennis bracelets are of the same color, cut, clarity, and carat weight, which gives a uniform and seamless shine around the wrist. But there are also the ones made with stones of different sizes and shapes to give it a more customized appearance.

Owing to its uniform pattern, the traditional tennis bracelet design is called the ''diamond line bracelet'' or the ''eternity bracelet''. This style started in the late 1980s and has become common in the fashion and jewelry industries ever since. Its simple design makes it suitable for wearing alone or together with other bracelets and watches to enhance the wearer's beauty.

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Why is it Called a Tennis Bracelet?

The name tennis bracelet was derived when Chris Evert, a professional tennis player, had the jewelry fell off her wrist during the U.S. Open in 1987. Evert, active between 1972 and 1989, was characterized by her fashion sense during her playing days, including a diamond bracelet that was common during her matches. In one of the games, her bracelet with a diamond had a snap and fell off her wrist, forcing her to ask for a break to look for the jewel. The media well-documented this incident, and the bracelet has been commonly referred to as a tennis bracelet since then.

Prior to this incident, these bracelets were known as "diamond line bracelets" or "eternity bracelets." The new name, "tennis bracelet," was quite catchy, which made the piece of jewelry very famous and recognized.

The story of Chris Evert losing her bracelet during a tennis match not only made the tennis bracelet famous but also emphasized the need for a good clasp. Today, most tennis bracelets come with extra safety clasps to prevent such mishaps.

For more fashion tips, especially if you are going to watch a tennis match, the article on what to wear to the US Open will be useful.

History of Tennis Bracelets

The tennis bracelet was first called the "eternity bracelet," and it has been in existence since the 1920s. But, the term "tennis bracelet" was not used until the 1970s, when tennis star Chris Evert wore one.

Chris Evert was one of the greatest female tennis players in the world between the 1970s and 1980s. She was famous for her fashion and dressing style, and she used to wear diamond accessories during her games. Marion Fasel, the jewelry historian, has revealed that the name tennis bracelet was given when Evert used to wear these diamond bracelets on the tennis court during the US Open tournament in the 1970s.

Evert's decision to wear bracelets in her matches was quite daring, given that it was not typical for people to wear delicate jewelry during sporting events. Nevertheless, the actress's popularity and influence contributed to the trend, and the bracelets can be referred to as "tennis" because of their connection with the tennis player.

The exact origin of the name is quite unclear, but the widely known story is that during the 1987 U.S. Open, Chris Evert lost a diamond that was part of her bracelet during a game. Once the match was in progress, Evert's diamond bracelet got damaged, and she demanded a stop to the game to look for the lost diamonds. This event helped to bring a lot of attention to the bracelet and link it with tennis.

Since the 1987 U.S. Open, a bracelet worn by tennis stars during the tournament has come to be known as a tennis bracelet. These bracelets became fashionable for wearing on and off the tennis court. Tennis bracelets have evolved, and these days, one can find them in different designs.

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What Kind of Tennis Bracelets Are There?

Tennis bracelets are available in many types of styles and look to fit anyone's personality and wants. Some of the most popular types include:

  • Classic Diamond Tennis Bracelets: These are the most classic and conventional rings with a single line of diamonds.

  • Colored Gemstone Tennis Bracelets: Including sapphires, emeralds, or rubies for a pop of color.

  • Mixed Metal Tennis Bracelets: Using two or more types of gold, such as white gold, yellow gold, and rose gold, in one piece.

How Much is a Tennis Bracelet?

The price of a tennis bracelet depends on various factors, such as the type of metal used, the quality and size of the diamonds or gemstones, and the brand or designer of the piece.

Metal Type

Tennis bracelets are normally produced with precious metals including gold, platinum or sterling silver. The kind of metal that has been used in making the bracelet is a determinant factor of how much it will cost.

  • Platinum: Due to this metal's scarcity and density, platinum tennis bracelets are the most costly. A 16-carat platinum diamond tennis bracelet can range from $37,887.

  • Gold: Gold tennis bracelets are cheaper than platinum ones; the price depends on the karat purity—an 18K gold diamond tennis bracelet with 6. A 69-carat engagement ring can go for $6,995, and a 14K gold bracelet set with 6 carats can go for $6,495.

  • Sterling Silver: The cheapest type of tennis bracelets is made of sterling silver, and a 1-carat diamond bracelet will set you back by $1,095. However, it is important to note that sterling silver has a tendency to tarnish more than the others.

Diamond Quality

The stones used in a tennis bracelet, such as diamonds or gemstones, are an important factor in determining the price of the bracelet. Elements like cut, color, and clarity, as well as carat weight, will be used in evaluating the value of the bracelet.

  • Cut: Cuts of the diamonds influence their capacity to reflect light and shine. Therefore, well-cut diamonds with excellent proportions will be costly.

  • Color: There is a color scale for diamonds ranging from D to Z, where D is colorless, while Z is light yellow or brown. The fewer colors, the better and costlier the diamond is.

  • Clarity: It defines the state of the diamond as to whether or not it contains any inclusions or blemishes. Diamonds with higher clarity grades, such as IF or VVS, will be more costly than the others.

  • Carat Weight: The size of the diamonds also plays a role in the cost of the bracelet in question; this includes the total carat weight of the diamonds in the bracelet. Thus, the price of the bracelet increases as the carat weight also increases.

Brand and Designer

Luxury brands and famous designers usually charge more for tennis bracelets because of their brand and quality. For instance, a diamond tennis bracelet by Tiffany & Co. can range from $9,800 and above, while a similar bracelet from an emerging brand may be cheaper.

In general, a diamond tennis bracelet could cost from a few thousand dollars for a basic design to over $100,000 for a high-end luxury brand. The approximate price for a 14K gold tennis bracelet with 8 carats of diamonds of medium-range quality is $9,500.

While buying a tennis bracelet, one should know their budget, the type of metal they prefer, and the quality of diamonds they want in the bracelet. It is advised that one consult a professional jeweler to help one choose the best tennis bracelet that fits one's taste and pocket.

When Should You Wear a Tennis Bracelet?

Tennis bracelets can be worn on different occasions and are trendy accessories among many people. Here are some suggestions:

  • Formal Events: Best suited for weddings, galas, and other formal occasions that require black-tie attendants.

  • Casual Outings: This just gives that extra class to any outfit worn on a day-to-day basis.

  • Sports Events: Interestingly, they can be worn to sports events, including tennis matches, as they are safe and comfortable.

For more on the latest predictions in tennis and fashion, don't miss our Wimbledon predictions for 2024.

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