Chain is one of the most fundamental and traditional elements of jewellery design. Incorporated into necklaces, bracelets, earrings, even hair accessories and belts. We have put this guide together to take you through the different necklace chains that feature within the Skomer Studio collections.
Trace chain - The Barre Necklace in 9kt gold
Trace meaning a line or series, a trace chain is made up of equal sized round or oval links in alternating horizontal and vertical planes to each other so that the chain doesn’t lie totally flat. Trace chains are a fine and delicate style, perfect for small pendants.
The trace chain has an equestrian connection and was one of the earliest chain styles to be used to harness horses to carriages.
As well as the name of a chain style, trace is also a reference to the weightiness and thickness of a necklace chain, for example you can get a trace belcher chain or trace figaro chain.
Belcher chain - Graduated Bracelet in sterling silver
Belcher chain is a type of trace chain made with simple half round oval links. The Belcher chain's traditional name is the rolo chain, however the name Belcher became increasingly popular after the chain was worn by a bare knuckle fighter from Britain in the 18th century named James ‘Jem’ Belcher, the Champion of England from 1800-1805.
Rope chain - Drop Pendant Necklace in 9kt gold
The rope chain consists of a trace chain in which each new chain link emerges and passes through the second link from a previous link so the links advance spirally and the result resembles a twisted cable or rope.
Venetian/box chain on the right hand side - Duo Venetian Necklace in sterling silver
The venetian chain, also known as the box chain, is a trace chain where all the links are square and the opening is kept small for the links to appear continuous.
Figaro chain - Figaro Pendant Necklace in sterling silver
Many believe that the figaro chain originated in Italy and was named after the popular Italian opera - ‘The Marriage of Figaro’ by Italian chain-makers. Traditionally the figaro chain has been worn by men and worn bearing a cross or medallion. The figaro chain is made up of similar links to curb or belcher chains with the addition of an elongated link within the pattern. The most popular sequence is three round links and then one long rounded rectangular link.