Chunky Necklaces

Chunky necklace fan, Gloria Grahame
Chunky jewellery and the late 1940s/1950s go together like ham and eggs - think Grace Kelly and her  chunky charm bracelet in Rear Window or Jane Russell's big, gold gypsy earrings in Macao.

Chunky jewellery had been popular in the 1920s, dipped in the 30s and early 40s and then came back bigger and bolder than ever.  Post-war mass production also  meant a drop in the price in jewellery, which appeared en masse in innovative shapes and cheaper materials, such as wood, plastic and glass.

Although thinner, streamlined jewellery - such as a single strand of pearls -also became popular in the 1950s, for those who were looking to make an instant impact, a chunky necklace lifted an ensemble from demurely understated to hot sensational.

Lauren Bacall

Chunky necklace designs were bold and big and when teamed with simple outfits, they emphasized drama and a sense of style - eg; a giant' seed pod' choker necklace with a high collar or a scooped neckline and rows of big beads.