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How to Layer jewellery

By Nagashree

The concept of layering jewellery has arrived! is it a faux pas to combine silver and gold shades? How to pair bracelets,bangles and kadas without going gaudy and how to layer jewellery with different outfits? Read more all

Layering jewellery is probably one of the most exciting and creative ways with which you can bring a plain outfit back to life or enhance the looks of a rich one! Layering necklaces to achieve an extra chunky and playful effect has been in vogue off late.
If you love to accessorise, or prefer an easy option when it comes to getting dolled up, layering necklaces is a trend to try. Being creative with your experiments is the key here. “Avoid mixing more then two or three chains in one look to ensure you don’t end up looking gaudy or going overboard” tips Chhaya Jain, jewel architect at Zahav Jewels.

The Necklace Theory

Layering necklaces can make any outfit look like you have put a lot of work into it, which is why many women adore this! Sadly, not a lot of people know how to perfect this look. The key to pulling off layered chain necklaces is to embrace variety. From faux gemstones and pearls to elegant thin laces and charms, the more variety and contrast, the better. “It’s usually best to put on layered necklaces for an outfit that is quite plain or dull. Wearing a lot of jewellery with a patterned outfit that has lots of laces, tassels, beads or sequins might make you look over the top or mismatched”, says Saurabh Gadgil, managing director, P N Gadgil Jewellers.
Layering necklaces can be tricky and can sometime also end up in fashion faux pas but if you are able to master the art, the modish combination adds an intriguing and decidedly stylish element to any outfit, even if you’re simply wearing a T-shirt and jeans. Although this kind of layering is more or less instinctive, there are also several fashion rules to consider in the process. Layering jewellery can turn out to be both an enjoyable as well as well-coordinated fashion move that can balance any outfit.
Jewellery designer, Sangeeta Deewan, Zoya, diamond boutique from the house of Tata, elucidates the rules of layering necklaces “To start with, look for a choker that’s sleek and minimalistic. The choker, which anchors the entire necklace combo, should be the thickest piece of the trio and rest right at your collarbone. Your next piece should be a slightly longer one than the choker. We suggest a subtle bar necklace.” She continues “Choose one with a delicate chain, which acts as the perfect foil to the choker’s thicker silhouette, and it should be approximately 22-to-24 inches long. Your third necklace should be the longest piece, preferably one with a pendant, to add a dimension to the look. Opt for a chain that’s about 30-to-32 inches long in the same metal family as your other two pieces, as this will ensure your trio has a cohesive feeling to it.”

Pairing Up Wrist Pieces
An elegant sculptured cuff is totally chic on its own, but adding links, bangles, or beads makes the look really fresh. When pairing accessories, one must keep in mind the colour and style of the outfit. A funky bracelet can be clubbed with mesmerising gemstones to add a little edge to the look. “Bangles and kadas can complement the traditional look. Gold kadas with rubies and emeralds would create a royal look without making you look gaudy” Saurabh Gadgil explains. The point of pairing up a lot of wrist pieces is to get that dramatic look, but there are chances of jeopardising the look by going overboard with this style. “Bangles and kadas can be paired if you are wearing combination of coloured stones and diamonds” says Sangeeta Deewan.
Try to match the colours in your bracelets with those in your scarf, belt or other pieces of your outfit, or brighten up neutral, solid tones with your favourite colour combinations. Make your look seem more put-together instead of just sloppily piled on. For instance, if you want to wear more than three-to-four bracelets, maybe just stick to plain earrings and go without a necklace to keep your outfit from looking too loud. “Any flexible belt bracelet can be clubbed with a simple ruby or emerald tennis bracelet, to add a little colour, fun and style. The bold antique engraved kada could go very well with a stack of princess, baguette set ruby or with emerald line single bangles” Chhaya Jain opines. She continues, “Adding a diamond bangle to it will completely bring out the beauty and elegance; making the look extremely rich and grand.”

Matching it with different outfits

It’s always preferred to play smart with jewellery. When deciding on what look to sport for a lehenga, saree and a gown, it’s recommended to keep in mind the colour and style of your outfit. Saurabh Gadgil explains that a lehenga with gold work should be complemented with nothing except gold. Mixing up two tones can look gaudy. Also less use of stones if the dress has a lot of work on it is something that should be considered. For example, a simple neckline can help vintage or classic jewellery stand out.
For any outfit, accessorising totally depends on the style of your outfit and how much embellishment it already has on it. If the dress has fewer embellishments, you can opt for heavy jewellery. However, if the dress is too heavy one can go for minimal jewellery like a simple mix of gold charm bracelet with a diamond studded tennis bracelet. “If the wearer wishes to sport jewellery on a heavy dress, she can opt for jewellery matching to the outfit but try not to go overboard”, Chhaya Jain says. As a rule “avoid large, chunky beads if there are several of them on the strand, also avoid thick, heavy chains when layering necklaces and avoid mixing gold and silver tones as they usually clash” says Saurabh Gadgil.
Bring out the style in you by stacking up your jewellery wardrobe! What else is more statement than layering a few awesome pieces together!?


The essential do’s and don’ts
• Look for jewelry pieces that are versatile and can be worn with a lot of different things instead of buying a piece that goes only with one dress.
• Mix up styles, lengths, colours etc. Make it fun!
• DON’T layer necklaces and bracelets at the same time – pick one to emphasize (unless they are subtle pieces).
• Do consider dimension and size. Larger women can pull off bolder, chunkier pieces than their diminutive counterparts. Earrings that dangle help slim the overall look. Jewellery that is too small or out of balance will draw attention to figure flaws. Balanced pieces, on the other hand, draw attention away from flaws.
5) DON’T wear big earrings if layering necklaces.
Inputs taken from jewellery designer, Sangeeta Deewan,
Zoya, diamond boutique from the house of Tata

How to Wear the Layered Look
• Never club European geometric motif together with traditional Indian jewellery pieces (bracelet or neckpiece).
• Mixing and matching of Victorian inspired jewellery with Indian jewellery is a brilliant idea.
• Mixing jewels with too many colours will surely not add to the beauty, in fact, will make it look gaudy. So sticking to combinations like emeralds and tanzanite or mix of pastel shades of sapphires or emeralds and pearls would really enhance the look.
• Wearing neckpiece, ring, and bracelet all together which are totally different in their basic design concept is a complete disaster. For e.g. - a traditional vilandi neckpiece with a modern Cartier bracelet would be a bad idea.
Inputs taken from Chhaya Jain, jewel architect at Zahav Jewels


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