Why is a Tennis Bracelet Called A Tennis Bracelet
Why is a Tennis Bracelet Called a Tennis Bracelet?
In 1987, Chris Evert, the top women’s tennis player in the world, had a habit. Every time she hit the tennis court, she would wear a diamond bracelet. The US Open, Wimbledon—it didn’t matter. If Chris Evert was hitting the court, a diamond bracelet was coming with her.
To many, this seemed like a strange thing. Something that looked like white gold or an eternity bracelet? In the middle of a tennis match? It looked like something as expensive as an engagement ring. And here was Chris Evert, the world’s top tennis player, wearing those gemstones like she was doing an ad for her local jewelers.
What Chris Evert proved is that it’s possible to wear a diamond bracelet even in the context of athletic activity. With the right selection of gemstones, the right jewelers, and a good degree of confidence, even someone on the tennis court could look their best.
How a Diamond Bracelet Became a “Tennis Bracelet,” or Diamond Tennis Bracelet
So why is it called a tennis bracelet, then? What came to be known as the “tennis bracelet” refers to a thin bracelet, often studded with diamonds, inspired by what Chris Evert would wear to every match. Chris Evert wore diamond bracelets designed by jeweler George Bedewi. When Chris Evert once even stopped a match that was being broadcast live—just to find her bracelet—it brought even more attention to the thin, elegant look of the diamond bracelet. After all, who wouldn’t want to emulate Chris Evert?
Of course, when Chris Evert first wore these bracelets, they were not known as tennis bracelets. They weren’t even known as a diamond tennis bracelet. But in her quest for the Grand Slam, Chris Evert still wore cut diamonds and diamond jewelry that had jewelry designers all over the world abuzz. Soon, demand surged. How could people find thin, elegant bracelets like Chris Evert wore while playing tennis? How could they find what would now be dubbed as a “tennis bracelet”?
What Makes this Article of Diamond Jewelry so Unique?
At first glance, you might think that there’s nothing separating the diamond bracelet worn by a Grand Slam tennis player and the ordinary diamond line bracelet you can find at your local jeweler. But what Chris Evert did was show that thin diamond jewelry could be worn—even with cut diamonds—during strenuous activity like tennis.
But let’s take a look at what separates a tennis bracelet from other items, like diamond rings, the eternity ring, and other elements that jewelry designers might use:
- A tennis bracelet is generally thin. One of the most common forms of tennis bracelet is, say, a rose gold tennis bracelet that’s thin, with many studded elements in it, usually diamonds. The way the bracelet is both thin and flexible highlights its original use in tennis, but it’s not a requirement that you go out and hit the tennis courts after putting one on.
- Small elements, such as jewels. This isn’t exactly a wedding ring, where you want to highlight a large gem. Tennis star Chris Evert wanted to wear something elegant, but also practical. That’s why tennis bracelets tend to hold smaller diamonds that give the overall bracelet more flexibility. Its overall structure can then be worn on active and special occasions alike. Since the diamonds bring the glamor and the practical build of the bracelet makes it acceptable for the outdoors, it has more versatility than many types of necklaces.
The usual piece of jewelry might be there to highlight a specific gem. That’s the case often in earrings and rings—especially engagement rings. But the tennis bracelet is versatile enough to feature different precious metals. It doesn’t have to look a specific way—it just has to be a specific way, reflecting its origins in the 1987 tennis season with Chris Evert's tennis bracelet.
Why Pick a Tennis Bracelet?
Why pick a tennis bracelet at all? First, let’s get one thing out of the way: you don’t have to play tennis to wear a tennis bracelet. They look great no matter what you’re doing. They can be worn to elegant occasions such as wedding receptions and red carpet events. They can be worn when you’re doing something athletic but still want to look your best. Their versatility is one of their most important hallmarks. Simply put, they work with anything.
Because of this versatility, they also make for great gifts. People who don’t understand jewelry often see why a tennis bracelet might have appeal. Sure, highlights like red gold or white gold can make important differences. But when it comes down to it, you want to be sure that the gift you’re getting someone will see plenty of use. And a tennis bracelet is the best way to make sure that’s the case.