Styling a pendant Part 1 of 2

In my shop, one of the most common requests is to "put my pendant onto a cord". People often bring a jewellery souvenir back from a holiday (think: Holiday in Venice ->Murano), and pendants are popular gifts. And why not? They are so easy to pack and post! I’m mostly referring to single pieces needing some way to either wear or display them. The quick and easy ways I will chat about today, but some more interesting design options will be considered next blog.

Here goes …

So … it was a gift, a souvenir from your holiday, a treasured memento, something you made, or just a pretty piece you couldn’t resist at your favourite bead shop!

However you acquired it … you now have a pendant that you would like to make into a necklace.

There are some things to consider when deciding how to style your necklace:

On what occasions might you wear it? Dressy or casual? Everyday, as in 24/7? Do you want it simple and unadorned, or more detailed? Long or short? I know too many questions are confusing: relax and just think how you want to wear your treasure.

Option 1: The default option: black leather or cord

String it on a strip of black leather.

This works (it’s popular for a reason), and many Natural Style people gravitate to this option and stay there. Classic, and great for ethnic and tribal traditional pieces, and it is often preferred for mens and boys jewellery. Black cord is often accompanied with a sliding (adjustable) knot, for clasp-free wearing.


Pendants such as the turquoise one above are often simply strung on leather cord, in keeping with the natural chakra or healing stone style. (Or cotton if there is an objection to leather). The soft faux suede with the Murano pendant below works well: there are splashes of black in the pendant itself which is picked up by the cord. Note: This Murano pendant would also marry well with silver chain. 


It often surprises me that the black leather cord option is often the only option people think is available to them. Well, it isn't. Just as well you asked. Black doesn’t flatter everything, especially pendants with softer and lighter colours. Nor does it suit every body, or style. (I'm glad you asked again). Let's run past some alternatives:

Option 2: Coloured leather or cord

For those seeking a simple solution, the next step is showing off some coloured cords or leather.


Or maybe you have a small collection you want to string together, and a simple leather cord seems just right:


Or if one strand seems a little skinny, add another, or maybe more. 


and some more:


This is leather, but you might choose cotton cord, rattail (a shiny rayon cord) or faux suede. Consider the style of your pendant. The pre-made multistrand cord/ribbon (below) option was popular a few years ago, but I often find they are a little short in length, even with the extension chain, humph. Other times, it gels beautifully, like this green and cream combo. 


And if you have a momento like a very pretty piece of paua shell (below), you can string a simple leather cord (this is doubled), and add some drops to the pendant itself. The stringing is simple, but adding more to the pendant. But I am getting ahead of myself ...


The natural leather is softer, and keeps the style natural.


Option 3: Chain

Chain (along with black cord) is often the choice of the designers selling the pendants, mostly because its easy and inoffensive, and sometimes it works without changing. I think chain works best with pendants that have some metal as part of their design. It os often very quickly clear if chain adds to the look of the pendant (lifting it up), or if other choices look more flattering. For some variety, look at different sizes and colours of chain, look at bright metal or antiqued, and if the chain you like is fine, you might like to try (again) adding another strand … or two...



And then ... we can add things to your pendant to make it a unique necklace. Like Beads. For example. Which (for me), is the most fun option of all!

What's to come ...

As I continue to develop my blog, I want to emphasize how important it is to develop your jewellery wardrobe in the same manner as you develop your clothing one. Or, maybe, in a better way! Start by knowing your options for styling your jewellery (or ask us), and you will find yourself liking some options better than others, for example:

  • black cord / not black cord
  • single strand / the more the better
  • low contrast-matching / high contrast
  • detail / less fuss
  • plain and simple / give me a design that's unique and out there
  • statement size / delicate

just to name a few choices. Later,  we shall chat about the practical choices of size, length, shape, colour, and some other aspects to choosing your jewellery like face and body shape that impact on your design. Working this way will result in a jewellery wardrobe that forms a significant part of your style, and you will love, enjoy and wear every piece you own.  And we will go slowly, so as not to confuse you with too much info to think about at once. Style takes time to grow and refine itself, it changes over time as you do. We strengthen our confidence in our choices as we learn. 

Next time: Even more ways to style your pendant. A bit more elaborate this time.
More pretty pictures and ... Pendants With Beads! My favourite accessories!

Til then,

Share the joy of jewellery,


Kim Flowers