Necklaces are one of the most popular types of jewelry. Befitting nearly any age and gender, from young girls to adult men, the variety of necklace types in today's modern jewelry market is astounding.
Just as there are a tremendous number of meanings associated with various types of necklaces, there are thousands of different types and materials. The most popular types include chains made from metals such as gold, silver, and titanium. Pearls are another classic favorite loved by women for generations, conveying a classic and subtle beauty. Diamond and gemstone pendants on coordinating gold or silver chains are also perpetually in style. Beads and crystals are always a hit, especially among teenagers, and the popularity of handmade, vintage, and antique necklaces has also skyrocketed in recent years.
As with most jewelry, necklaces range in price dramatically. Fashion and costume jewelry sold in trendy jewelry markets such as department and accessory stores might sell for under $10. Necklaces from fine jewelers, on the other hand, can range from $100 to well over $1,000.
Window shopping at local jewelry stores can be a great way to discover the types of necklaces that really catch your eye, but shopping online can help you find the right piece for your budget. The following are some online stores that carry a great selection of necklaces for any price range:
- Etsy: From antique lockets to hand-made beads, this is a great site to visit if you are looking for unique pieces.
- BlueNile: With a focus on customer education and guidance, Blue Nile lets you build your own diamond pendant by pairing your choice of settings with a hand-selected diamond.
- Costco: Although known for bulk packages of cereal and paper towels, Costco also carries a nice selection of necklaces, including diamonds, gemstones, and pearls.
- Emitations: If some of your favorite necklaces are out of your price range, you can find realistic-looking faux jewelry made from cubic zirconia and less expensive metals at Emitations.
- Ross-Simons: With more than 2,000 necklaces, you're sure to find something here to satisfy your jewelry-needs.
- Macy's: This store carries everything from silver chains to pearls and diamond pendants.
Popular Necklace Styles
Despite the incredible variety of new designs, there are some styles that have staked their claim on the necklace scene. These include the following:
- Layered, dual, or three-strand neck jewelry
- Chunky, oversized pieces
- Celebrity-inspired necklaces
- Delicate lariats or "Y's"
- Crystal beads
- Three station and drop necklaces
- Natural beads and organic carvings
- Long ropes/chains
- Colored gold
- Open and hammered links in chains
- Floating heart pendant necklaces
Tips on Buying Fine Necklaces
Unfortunately, the large number of store-front jewelry retailers, auction sites, and resellers can make it easy for consumers to get duped into buying fake or knock-off jewelry that was presented as genuine. Keep these tips for getting real, authentic necklaces in mind as you shop:
- Gold chains bearing a stamp of GP or EP means that it's gold-plated or electro-plated, not real gold.
- In the US, real gold will be stamped with the manufacturers' trademark.
- Authentic diamond jewelry of more than a quarter carat should come with paperwork from the Gemological Institute of America or an authenticity guarantee from the original manufacturer.
Necklaces to Fit Your Budget and Style
Shopping for necklaces can be a fun and exciting experience, especially if you are in the market for an heirloom piece that will stay in your family. Take the time to do research to ensure that you are getting a necklace that fits both your budget and your style.