How To: Layer Necklaces

Written by on January 26, 2012 in DIY, Lifestyle - 33 Comments

Hi ladies! Tara here from The Wonder Girl, showing you how to master the art of layering multiple necklaces to create a dramatic, multi-dimensional, and glamorous look! Layering necklaces with different textures and details is one of my favorite ways to add sparkle and drama to any outfit. Over the years, I have developed some strategies to get the look right, and am sharing them with you here today.

When selecting necklaces to layer, I like to play with different colors, textures, and lengths while highlighting one unifying element in each piece. In this example, I used a total of 5 gold, metal-based necklaces of varying lengths and gauges (chunkiness) to create a full, draping bib necklace. When placing them around my neck, I adjusted the length of each necklace so that the look is more dense towards the face and more sparse as it gets longer. This draws the eye up and keeps the real drama near your face.  I love to use necklace extenders (available at most jewelry and department stores) so that I have more control and flexibility with the lengths of my necklaces.

Let’s get started!

Start with the longest and the finest/thinnest necklaces first. I like to get chunkier as the necklaces get shorter and start to sit more on top of each other. This helps the necklaces lay right on your chest and also keeps them from getting crazy tangled. The base of this look is 2 different long, layered necklaces that have fun details — one with pearls, one with black enamel beads. They don’t look like they fit together right now, but the additional necklaces we add to the look will unite all of the details.

Next, I added this slightly shorter and chunkier multi-strand necklace with pearls to tie back to the first long necklace. These 3 necklaces together create the “bib.” You can most certainly stop here, but if we keep layering, we can add even more texture and dimension! This will make the look a bit more dramatic and really take it to the next level.

The top 2 necklaces added here are what I call the “flare.” I love that both have rhinestones to add another element to the look. Plus, the black base of the shorter rhinestone one ties back to the enamel drops on our first necklace! One is compact (I kept it shorter and closer to the face) and one is more open (it’s longer and fits well with the thinner necklaces on the base). All of these levels and elements come together to create a look that all works together magically and really creates an impact.

I hope you use these tips to create a layered necklace look of your own. Don’t be afraid to experiment with what you already have in your collection. You can wear this look to jazz up your favorite black tee shirt and jeans, or with a strapless cocktail dress for a unique and personalized nighttime look. What I love about layering necklaces is that you can play to create a work of art around your neck that’s uniquely your own!

Glitter Guide and I would love to see how you have layered your necklaces! Tweet us pictures at @glitterguide and my twitter account @taradear.

  • Grace – Stripes & Sequins

    Love this! Tara is a layering pro!!

  • meg.

    Oh thank god, whenever I try to do this on my own it winds up in shambles.

  • lauren

    Wow, all of these necklaces are amazing!

  • Natalie

    Such a pretty combo!

  • GiGi Reed

    Great post, I LOVE the way you layered these necklaces. Absolutely gorgeous! :)

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  • Ms. P&C

    Lovely! I always have fun with necklace layering, but this inspires me to max out on more delicate styles instead of the bigger pieces I have… Good ideas!

  • Ayesha

    Beautiful. Now am rushing to find some in my drawer to layer up and click a pic just for ya!

  • Heather Stephens

    Gorgeous!! I recogize the La Coco Cupchain necklace as one of your “flair” pieces. I love all the combinations you can make with various necklaces. The possibilities are endless! Have you see the new Libby Necklace yet? Check it out! It would work perfectly with this concept!
    xo – Heather

  • Geraldine Looker

    Fabulous, stylish and original!

  • B. Mishoe

    Oh so very pretty…love all the necklaces!

  • Elaine

    Awesome look. You put these together so well! I would love to see more layered looks from you!

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  • GawgusThings

    Looks amazing – hopefully I’d still be able to lift my head 😉

    Emma x

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  • Adriana

    I love the layered look and how you mixed textures and found common elements. Very pretty. Thanks!

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  • Tara

    So glad you liked this post ladies! Yes, Emma, I will admit it can get very heavy! A neck workout I like to think of it as :-). You get used to it!

    Pop on over to my blog for more layering fun!


  • Bettina

    Lovely tutorial on layering! All of these necklaces are fabulous! Where is the necklace with the tie on the back from?

  • Peaches

    What a great guide to layering, love the different textures and styles! x

  • Mallory

    I’ve been loving necklaces that sort of mimic the layered look, but all in one piece. But this is versatile too, cause you can layer or wear them separately!

  • tara

    @Bettina – It’s from J. Crew! One of my faves :-)


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  • Jani

    great article! Thanks for your tips :) I love layering jewelry


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  • vicki

    fab, i love the idea of layering necklaces together for a eclectic mix! x

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  • Aeroplane and Apparel

    wow this is a really good article

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