As Adele herself acknowledges, her look has come a long way since she scored herself a record contract shortly after graduating from the Brit School in 2008. It wasn’t long before she was wowing the world with her powerful, authentic voice and assured stage presence—nor before she discovered her classic diva look: black dress, perfectly coiffured hair and sparkling diamond earrings. While a more youthful, more fashion-focused look is now her thing, earrings continue to be her go-to for jewellery. Where it was once diamonds and rubies, she’s now more likely to wear giant, surrealist Schiaparelli door knockers in gold, and we can all get on board with that. Keep reading to see Vogue’s pick of Adele’s finest earring looks.
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2008 Brit Awards
Just two years after graduating from the Brit School, Croydon’s performing arts school, one of Adele’s first major appearances was at the 2008 Brit Awards, where she won its first ever critics’ choice award. She set the tone for future appearances with large earrings, black eyeliner and a black dress.
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2011 Brit Awards
She followed the same white diamonds/black dress formula in 2011, but with added carat weight and sparkle.
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In her first appearance after undergoing vocal chord surgery, Adele proved her true diva status with mega-watt De Beers diamond earrings, a red lip and sequined Giorgio Armani gown.
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In her second look of the night, she wore Cartier diamond earrings and a ring to accept a total of six Grammy awards, including best record, best song, and album of the year.
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Full retro glamour complete with diamond, onyx and moonstone earrings from Van Cleef & Arpels.
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Breaking away from monochrome, Adele went full colour at the 2013 Grammys with ruby and diamond flower earrings, the perfect partner for her Valentino Couture dress.
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Adele wore two looks at the Academy Awards in 2013, where she took home the Oscar for best original song for “Skyfall”. Her first look included diamond cluster earrings from Harry Winston, which together with a diamond ring from the New York jeweller, were valued at a hefty £1m.
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To perform “Skyfall” at the ceremony in a different look, she again chose white diamonds, in this case a vintage 1970 pair from Van Cleef & Arpels with matching ring, and a black Burberry dress.
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2016 Brit Awards
Winning four gongs on the night including the Global Success award, she paired diamonds from David Morris with a custom-made Giambattista Valli burgundy gown.
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Adele accepted the album of the year award for 25 in yellow diamond earrings from Lorraine Schwartz, which matched a lemon brooch worn in honour of Beyonce’s Lemonade. Adele’s acceptance speech was a true fangirl moment – she said that Queen Bey’s album was her personal record of the year.
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Following a long period out of the public eye, Adele caused a media storm at Drake’s 33rd birthday party in Hollywood when she showcased her new look, thanks to a strict fitness regime. Still there was the cat-eye flick and black dress, but the fun statement earrings revealed a more relaxed, more youthful side to the star.
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Saturday Night Live, September 2020
Adele returned to SNL in fine comedic form as host, her first appearance on the show since 2008, when it broke her in the States. She wore Schiaparelli’s eye chandelier earrings and deftly preempted remarks about her changed appearance. “I know I look really, really different since you last saw me, but, actually, because of all the Covid restrictions and the travel bans, I had to travel light and only bring half of me,” she joked. “And this is the half I chose.”
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Adele turned to fashionista-favourite Schiaparelli once again to make things Instagram official with Rich Paul. Wearing an autumn/winter 2021 dress by the Parisian label’s Daniel Roseberry, she chose its teeth earrings, from dangle large pearls suspended in gloriously surrealist and glamorous fashion.