Uniform dressing is rarely a label I’d use to describe my personal style. My modes of dressing pretty much reflect my many moods. I’ll go the minimalist route with a simple pair of jeans and a white tee on Monday, and by Tuesday I'll step out in head to toe animal print–I live to switch things up. But one thing does stay the same no matter what I wear: gold necklaces. My stack of gold chains has undergone several variations throughout the years–like recently adding a gold Celine pendant necklace and a chunky link choker–but its presence persists. One reason I seldom take them off is because of their versatility–I find that gold jewelry works with virtually every sort of color or tone, and a gleaming necklace always injects the right amount of polish when I need it.
Gold necklaces also eternally timeless, so you can forget about buyers' remorse if you end up obsessively collecting them as much as I do. If you’re eager to jump on the gold necklace train, the key is to find a style that resonates with your own sartorial tendencies. Do you wear more polished, pared-down separates a la The Row? Then you’ll want to go for dainty or simple gold chains. If you’re into edgier outfits, chunky chains or pendants will fit the bill. Whatever you’re style, keep reading to see all of the pieces I'm itching to buy now. Guaranteed you won't want to take them off either.
Layered necklaces are one of my favorite styling tricks. They really spruce up a plain t-shirt or blazer when I'm aiming for an elevated casual look. Honestly, it can be tricky layering individual pieces (especially when they're varying lengths and styles), so save yourself the headache and try a shortcut: pre-multi-layered necklaces that have one clasp.
For fans of lower necklines, try a gold pendant chain. The style is still trending in a big way, so it's one I feel safe to advise splurging on. Vintage heirloom-inspired pendants are one of the more popular takes, and also one of my personal favorites. London based brands Missoma and Aligheri do this style particularly well.
Some people enjoy a quieter elegance when it comes to jewelry, and if you're in this camp, stick with dainty chains. They can make a subtle statement on their own with dressier pieces like silk tops or high neck dresses, or serve as a base layer for a myriad of pendants.
My first name necklace came from a Canal St. jeweler in New York at the age of 8, so needless to say I've been fervently behind personalized jewelry for years. It's not necessarily a style for everyone, but it feels a little more special and thoughtful than your standard gold chain. I like to wear them with turtlenecks or mock-neck tops during the winter.
Now we're getting into the class of snake and link chains. You'll want to consider this style if you're looking for an everyday accessory that will look good with everything. One option is to go shorter in length for a choker effect or opt for something longer to give a little flash over your favorite tops. These types of necklaces will never steer you wrong due to their effortlessness. I usually layer mine with a nameplate necklace or a pendant, but it looks equally stylish worn solo.
This one is for the more is more club. If making a statement is paramount, let me introduce you to the chunky gold necklace. These chains require a little more styling prowess to work with because they are so commanding, but here's a trick: they'll always pair nicely with off the shoulder or high necklines.
Indya Brown is a fashion editor, stylist, and writer living in Los Angeles. While going to school at Columbia University in New York City, she got her feet wet in the fashion industry interning at Elle magazine, Harper's Bazaar, and New York magazine's The Cut. After graduating in 2016, she joined The Cut as a fashion assistant, eventually working her way up to fashion editor. There, she worked on a multitude of projects, including styling inbook feature stories for New York magazine's print issue, writing and pitching market stories for The Cut, and serving as fashion lead for The Cut's branded content. While New York has been her home for over 10 years, she moved to Los Angeles in the midst of the pandemic in 2020 for a new chapter. Now she is a fashion market editor for Who What Wear, focusing on emerging designers, rising trends on and off the internet, interior design, and BIPOC creatives and brands. Aside from her duties as a fashion market editor, Brown is also a freelance stylist and writer, working on national print and video commercial campaigns for Sephora, The Independent, and Cadillac. Her bylines also include Harper's Bazaar, Vox, and The New York Times. But once the computer goes down and the emails turn off, she's likely eating her way through Koreatown, hunting down vintage furniture, scoping out new outrageous nail designs to try, or taking a hot cycling class.
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