Necklaces are a great way to add personal style to any outfit, as well as a wonderful way to commemorate important events and celebrate milestones. From dressing up a basic top to balancing out dramatic necklines, necklaces are a style workhorse. With so many different styles and lengths available, choosing the right necklace can get overwhelming. Thankfully, there are a few key factors to consider when selecting a necklace that will help point you in the right direction.
The first step to selecting the perfect necklace is finding your neck size. You can do this by wrapping a fabric measuring tape around the base of your neck and adding length until it feels comfortable. This will be the smallest chain size you will be able to comfortably wear. To envision what a longer chain length will look like, simply set the measuring tape for that length to see where on your torso it will lay. Common chain lengths range from 14” for choker-style necklaces to 36”+ for rope-style necklaces. The most common sizes for a feminine pendant-style necklace are 18” and 20”
Another factor to consider is the size or presence of a pendant on a necklace. A larger pendant can make a bold statement and might be perfect for a special occasion, but it may not be suitable for everyday wear. If you're looking for a necklace to wear regularly, a smaller, more delicate pendant may be more appropriate. Don’t forget that a simple chain can be just as elegant and flattering as one that includes a pendant.
Height and body type are also factors to keep in mind when selecting a necklace. A long necklace can be particularly flattering on taller individuals, while a shorter necklace can accentuate a petite frame. Similarly, a necklace with a vertical design can help to elongate the body, while a necklace with a horizontal design can broaden the appearance of the chest/upper body.
Finally, consider the outfit(s) you'll be wearing the necklace with. If you're purchasing a necklace for a special event, you can choose a bold necklace and make it the centerpiece of your look, opt for a smaller, more classic necklace to add the perfect amount of polish, or add a bit of whimsy with a playful pendant.
Your neckline can also provide guidance when considering your necklace length and style. For example, v-necks will look great with necklaces that hit around your collarbone, while turtlenecks will look best with longer, possibly even layered necklace styles. Here’s a quick reference guide for pairing necklines with necklace lengths:
Note: As a general rule of thumb, for curvy and plus-size bodies, add a couple of inches to the recommendations above. For petite silhouette, subtract 1 to 2 inches.
There are several key factors to consider when selecting a necklace, including neck size, pendant size, height, body type, occasion, and outfit. These factors can help guide you toward a necklace that not only looks beautiful but also complements your personal style. That said, don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t color outside of the lines! The best jewelry pieces are those you truly love and make you feel special each time you wear them.
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