Pendant Necklace History
Pendants are decorative jewelry ornaments which suspend from necklaces. The word "pendant" comes from Anglo-French pendaunt, meaning "hanging" and Latin pendere, meaning "to hang." Pendant jewelry can be traced back as early as ancient Mesopotamia. Ancient Egypt and Greece weren't strangers to the pendant either, and crafted sculptural designs as well as gemstone pieces. Many believe that early men were the first to create pendant necklaces, stringing rocks or shells with grass or vine. Today, pendants are commonplace in the jewelry industry, loved by people from all over the world.
The sky is the limit with pendant designs! They come in any size, shape, and motif imaginable. Animal pendants, like bird, insect, and cat pendants, are always a whimsical choice. And if you like the idea of custom pendant necklaces, try a monogram or initial pendant necklace. Other popular styles include a cross pendant, heart pendant, solitaire pendant, and teardrop pendant necklace.
Fine jewelry pendants are crafted of all kinds of precious metals and gemstones. Gold pendants cast a luxurious glow, while silver pendants offer style and affordability. Gemstones also play a key role, as well as pearl and diamond pendant necklaces. And it doesn't stop at luxury jewelry. You'll find fashion pendants in costume jewelry, too, made with simulated gemstones and crystals in goldtone and silvertone metals.
Bales are the part of the pendant that allows it to be strung up and suspended. Bales are typically jewelry findings which are attached to the top of the pendant. A single bale provides one hole or loop for the necklace to string through. A double bale provides two loops for a fancier look. A hinged bale can be opened and closed, permitting the pendant to easily be attached or detached from a necklace. And some pendants have a fixed bale, which is a hole or series of loops built right into the design. Many pendants with fixed bales are referred to as slide pendants, since they slide across the necklace instead of dangling.
Finding a Chain
Many of our pendants include a chain and are referred to as "pendant necklaces". But when a pendant is sold separately, you have the opportunity to choose a chain necklace yourself or use one that you already own. Always make sure to read the product details carefully to find out what size chain the pendant can hold. Also, take the pendant's length into account when choosing the length of a chain (if unsure, opt for an adjustable chain). Then the style and color choice is up to you!
We recommend that a slide pendant be paired up with an omega chain or a leather cord. And if you are having a difficult time deciding on a chain type, cable chains or Singapore chains are always classic options. Visit our Types of Chain article to learn more!