The Chunky Diamond Chain Link is the Season’s Must-Have. It’s modern, bold and an instant wardrobe update.
When Beyonce appeared in Vogue UK’s December issue wearing layers of diamond chain link chokers, she made a bold style statement that instantly put chunky chains in the spotlight. After all, the music and fashion icon showed that the heavy metal look, a style that was originally made popular by 90s rap artists, is back and better than ever.
The chain’s versatility means it can suit any age, gender or style depending on the design; it could be urban cool or ultimate classic. Rather than just the means from which to hang a pendant, the chain has become the focus, further elevated by a splash of diamonds.
Signs of the contemporary chunky chains first appeared last year on the catwalks of fashion houses from Gucci to Bottega Veneta. Styled as statement pieces atop more casual clothing, these chunky chains were the antithesis of the lightweight layered jewels that have been popular over the past few years. In breaking out bold jewelry, designers appeared to say, ‘After a year at home, ‘I’m ready to go out and have fun again.’
“The new modern links feel substantial, yet very easy and simple,” says Elizabeth Von der Goltz, Chief Commercial Officer of MatchesFashion. “I love how you can wear these statement pieces in a very new and modern way and not feel that they are too precious.”
The classic chain link has been reimagined this year in new pieces including Pomellato’s large, sensuous diamond-paved links, Tiffany & Co.’s slim and elongated diamond-dotted Hardware line, Shay’s chunky metal styles and Sara Weinstock’s elegant link triple strand necklace
“The chain’s versatility means it can suit any age, gender or style depending on the design; it could be urban cool or ultimate classic,” says Vogue Jewelry and Watch editor Rachel Garrahan. “Rather than just the means from which to hang a pendant, the chain has become the focus, further elevated by a splash of diamonds.”
Walters Faith is one jewelry brand that has made chunky chains their signature look because owners Stephanie Abramow and Mollie Good say they work with the currently prevailing casual fashion looks—joggers included. “People are dressing down and bold jewelry is in,” they said. “We love bold jewelry that has weight to it, and the feel of a good chunky chain.” A key piece in their collection is the super-sized oval-shaped Saxon link necklace, which they both wear with jeans and t-shirts.
Great chain links aren’t confined just to necklaces: designers are also creating chunky chain link bracelets, large earrings and even rings. Stand-out pieces include David Webb’s chain link bracelets and rings with enamel, stones and diamonds, which were originally designed in ‘60s and ‘70s and are still being produced today.
The iconic designer David Webb always believed chains were here to stay. “Chains will not go out of style,” Webb said in 1970. He was right: Fifty years later and women still want a strong statement chain.
Black Diamond Chain Link Ring
Sterling silver and jet black rhodium Black diamonds, approximately 0.69 carats.
Classic Tri-Link Antiquated Ring
A full paveé version of the classic tri-link with accented with diamond bridges.
Sylva & Cie
Champagne Diamond Ten Table Wrap Bracelet and Choker
Sylva & Cie champagne diamond ten table wrap bracelet and choker, 15″ length. Can be worn as a choker or bracelet.
Pill Link Bracelet
18 karat yellow gold XL Pill Link Bracelet with diamond baguettes.
Maillon L large Earrings
18K white gold and diamond earrings.
Brilliant-cut diamonds, hammered 18K yellow gold, and platinum.
Sonoma Diamond Link Bracelet
Gold link bracelet made with oval stock Sonoma wire with full-cut diamonds.
18k white gold and diamond Jules earrings.
Mixed Oversized Pave Bracelet
18K Solid Gold, Diamonds
18K Rose Gold, White Rhodium and Diamond Earrings
Saxon 18K Rose Gold and White Rhodium Diamond Mix Matched 2 Drop Elongated Link Earrings
How to Style
Will Kahn, jewelry editor and stylist: "A thick chain necklace accented with diamonds has become the cool-girl signature. Throw it on with a t-shirt, jeans and a blazer and you are instantly dressed. The bold scale and heavy metal look is great worn alone or layered, and will become a staple of your wardrobe."
Diamonds and Pearls
Get set for a white-on-white pairing that literally glows. The combination of a sparkle-igniting diamond cut and lustrous pearl surface is purely magical. And rather than prim and proper, designers are interpreting the mix in ways that feel super fresh.