How to Wear a Pendant Necklace

purple poncho deborah bolandpendant necklace deborah bolandSo many times we throw on an outfit and we’re out the door when adding a simple accessory like a pair of earrings, a belt, a bracelet, a chic scarf or an interesting necklace would make all the difference in the world.

Here’s an example. I bought this gorgeous Diane Von Furstenberg poncho sweater and was so in love with the color that I thought that was all I needed.

But then I got thinking… “I wonder how that pendant I bought for my other outfit would look worn with this?”

I threw it on and here, you can see the difference. Which do you like?

I think my green gemstone pendant (which I only paid $10 for) elevates this look and adds real personality.

Now in the past we’ve dished out ideas on how to wear necklaces.We’ve talked about the right necklace for the right neckline, the right color necklace for your skin and lots more, but we haven’t talked much about pendant necklaces.

So, let me share a few tips for how to wear a pendant necklace:

Pendant necklaces can be worn with all kinds of necklines. They also look great on a plain top worn with a jacket.This seems to be a favorite with Gwyneth Paltrow. Gwyneth Paltrow
Sela Ward

Layering a pendant necklace adds texture, color and uniqueness.
photo: Helga Esteb/shutterstock

 

Some Gals love to layer pendant necklaces with shorter ones. This one on Sela Ward looks particularly pretty against the black and is a fantastic way to add some color to your face which can often look pale in black when you are over 40.
The one time you might want to avoid a pendant necklace is when you have a big bust, unless for some reason you want all eyes on your breasts. I can’t help but think of Joan on Mad Men with her infamous pendant pen! Joan Mad Men

Picture2

  • If you are short and petite you have to watch the length of your pendant necklace. Too long a pendant will drag you down and make you look shorter than you are.
  • Don’t wear a pile of other jewelry or accessories with your pendant necklace. You want it to stand out and make a statement.
  • I think most pendants look best worn over top of a solid color top rather than a print, so that it really stands out, although I did see a red and gold pendant on a leopard print top that looked great.
  • In general, a bold, beautiful pendant is a wonderful thing. The long V-shape creates a long lean line that lengthens and slims your body.

So, go for it and have some fun with this popular accessory!

Do you own a pendant? Send a photo to myphoto@fabulousafter40.com to show me how you wear it and I’ll post it.



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  1. I’m all about adding a wonderful unique piece of vintage jewelry to make your look unique and smart.

  2. Isn’t the idea of wearing jewelry (or anything else for that matter) to highlight your face?
    As you pointed out, the placement of pendant will funnel the looks towards the pendant. If it hits your boobs, people will look at your boobs, if it hits your belly, people will see your belly.
    Ideally, you will want people to look at YOU, your face, and that’s why shorter necklace options are better.

    And what happened to the wisdom that pendants (and long hair) draw your facial features down – something to avoid when you’re past 40? It would be great if you did a post of this and other tacit “understandings”.

    • Hi Juli,
      We all have parts of our body we want to highlight and parts we want to downplay. If you have a nice bustline, or you want to draw more attention to your bust (instead of your heavy hips, let’s say) then you may want to wear a pendant necklace. It’s about balance.

      As for long hair drawing your face down. if you have a long face to begin with this can be true, sometimes. But if you have a round or wide face, long hair may be fine. These are only guidelines not rules so don’t get too stuck on any of them. The mirror always tells the truth.

  3. Great to know about not wearing a pendant that’s too long if you’re petite. That I am & that I didnt know! Thanks Glam Girls!