What should you look for when buying a necklace?
So, you’re looking to buy a necklace but you’re not sure where to start. Necklaces are one of the most popular choices of jewellery, meaning there are thousands of styles to choose from. This doesn’t make it easier when you’re trying to find the perfect necklace but don’t worry, we’re here to help.
Whether you’re adding to your own collection or helping start someone else’s, it’s important that you know what to look for to ensure you’re buying a quality piece. We’ve put together a list of what to look for when buying a necklace – just in time for your Christmas shopping.
Choose your Material
Start by choosing the material you want. Let’s imagine you’re looking for a necklace for your collection. Ask yourself these questions to narrow down your choice: What metal do you like? What colour do you like?
The two main metals for jewellery is silver and gold. Sterling silver is one of the most commonly used metals in jewellery. Silver is typically what most people start their jewellery collection with, as it’s more versatile and less expensive compared to gold. Silver has many great qualities. It’s toned down and casual, yet icy, sparkly and sexy at the same time. It can be easily dressed up or down and the colour is easy to pair clothes and other jewellery with. As a starter piece, a silver necklace is a great choice.
Gold necklaces – and gold in general – have recently seen a resurgence. Gold is a classic colour that’s shiny and bright. While some gold pieces can bequite expensive, the introduction of gold plated and gold vermeil jewellery has helped make gold more affordable and popular. In addition to the standard colour, you can also choose different coloured golds, like white or rose.
Gold necklaces have had a big comeback in the past few years so if you’re looking to stay on trend, a gold chain or pendant is a great choice (more on that below!) Of course, you don’t have to stick to one material. You can mix and match metals for a layered colourful look but to make your buying easier, try to stick to just one material for the time being!
When purchasing a necklace, it’s not just the colour and material that you should be looking for but quality and durability. If you’re going to be wearing your necklace every day, it’s important you look for something high quality that will last a lifetime.
The best way to tell if you’re getting a quality piece is to look at the karat or percentage. If you already have a sterling silver necklace, you might have seen a 925 etched into the metal. This means it’s 92.5% pure silver. Gold is measured in karats and can range from 9ct to 24ct – the higher the karat, the better the quality.
What’s your Style?
This is the fun part – finding your necklace style. One of the first things to look at is the differences between necklace styles. Necklace is the general term for a piece of jewellery that hangs around the neck, but how or what it’s decorated with differentiates them. First, take a look at the two main types of necklaces – chains or pendants.
A chain is a series of interlocking pieces of metal. They are typically the same sized chain loops all the way around and don’t tend to have anything hanging from it. Instead, chains can have decorative elements incorporated into the metal. Chains can be thin or chunky and can be worn alone or within a stack. Today, chains are popular layering necklaces.
A pendant is a charm or token that hangs from a necklace chain. Pendant necklaces have a feature in the centre that ranges from discs, gemstones, lockets, spinners, initials and other symbols. For more on the difference between necklaces, chains, chokers and pendants, click here.
Another way to narrow down your choices is simple – what do you want your necklace to look like? It might sound silly but if you don’t know what you want your necklace to look like, then you won’t be able to find it! Do you want something simple and casual for everyday wear? Or do you want a big and bold piece for special occasions? This will help you pick your necklace.
Consider the Length
Finally, pick the length of necklace. Length is arguably the hardest part of the necklace buying process. It’s something you typically don’t tend to think about, but length is extremely important – especially if you’re picking a piece to fit into your layering collection. Let’s break down the necklace lengths:
Collar–A collar is worn tightly around the neck and is typically 14 inches. It’s very close to the neck and is best worn with open clothing, so you can really show off the necklace.
Choker – If you grew up in the 90s, you must have worn a choker at some point! A choker is the next shortest necklace and is worn tightly at the base of the neck. It can be decorated with charms or as a simple chain – some are even shoestrings!
Princess–Princess necklaces are 18 inches and worn on the collarbone. They’re extremely popular and versatile – a particular favourite for pendant necklaces.
Matinee–Matinees are 20-24 inches and sit between the collarbone and the chest. The matinee is where necklaces tend to increase in length per inches.
Opera– The opera is 28-36 inches and is one of the longer necklace styles, sitting on or below the chest. This is a popular choice for a long necklace within a layering combination.
Rope – The longest length is the rope at 36-42 inches. Wear it long or wrap it around for a double chain look.
Buying for someone else
It can be difficult buying jewellery for other people, especially if they’re an avid collector. If you’re buying a necklace for someone else, consider what they might already have and what they might be missing. This way, you can add to their collection more easily.
Another great gift for a necklace lover is a locket, engraved piece or a gemstone necklace. These are beautiful and meaningful necklaces as you’re able to add pictures, personal messages and birthstones. Take a look at Auree Jewellery’s necklaces and pick the perfect one for a loved one this Christmas.