Necklaces Talks


Tuesday, January 29, 2008

What Length Of Necklace Should I Get?

A very common question is: "How long of a necklace should I get?"

Of course, there is no hard-and-fast rule, but there are some guidelines that you can follow that will make your buying decision that much easier.

The place to start is your own necklace collection. If you have a favourite piece that you love wearing, measure it, and buy the same length, longer, or shorter depending on your mood.

If you are looking for something different than your existing pieces, you have to start considering a number of factors, including your neckline and your body's figure. If you hare having trouble visualizing these styles, imagine pearl necklaces, however these guidelines apply to virtually any type of necklace.

Collars are in the range of 12 to 13 inches long, and are usually made up of three or more strands that snugly hug the middle of the neck. Very versatile, it is virtually guaranteed not to interfere with your dress, however not everyone is comfortable with the feel. More suited to petite and tall frames.

Chokers range from 14 to 16 inches, with a timeless quality that make them appropriate to combine with everything from bridal gowns, formal eveningwear to casual. The lower portion of the necklace drapes on or slightly under the point between the two collarbones.

The princess necklace is 17 to 19 inches long and is the most common length for most pearl necklaces. It is long enough to drape over the outside of high necklines, and it also works well with V-neck and plunging necklines without delving too deeply. The lower portion of the necklace ends between armpit height and collarbone height.

The matinee necklace is roughly 20 to 25 inches long. Its length adds a sense of confidence and luxury, and can be works well with formal gowns and the professional appearance many are striving for. It looks best with higher necklines, giving them an air of sophistication.

The opera length necklace is between 26 and 36 inches long. At this length, you have choices in how you would like to wear it. If you double it up you create a fashionable two-strand choker. If you knot it at the neckline you create a vintage look that is gaining in popularity. Traditionally worn with eveningwear, it is gaining momentum as an accessory to casual attire for those on the cutting-edge.

The rope necklace is 37 inches or longer in length. Elegant and sexy, it can be worn in numerous ways such as doubled (or trippled!) to make a multistrand princess or choker, or tied in a knot to recreate a style reminiscent of the 1920's fashions. As seen in high-fashion magazines, this length of necklace can also be knotted and slung over the shoulder to accentuate the beauty of a backless dress.

Final Musings
One final thoughts to keep in mind is to consider your other accessories. Try not to have many pieces shouting for attention. For instance, if your necklace is large or grand, keep your earrings simple. Michael Nagy ( writes on a variety of topics related to jewellery fashions, and is co-founder of Crater Jewellery Design ( His more recent articles can be found at

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