What Kind of Necklace Do You Wear With a Mandarin Collar?

By Jennifer Richardson-Moulaison

Few women don't appreciate the chic neckline of a mandarin collar. While offering style and polish, without the stiff, often uncomfortable nature of a traditional blouse collar, the mandarin lies easily around the neck and never needs pressing or ironing to maintain its shape. With such distinct style, some might wonder how to best accessorize this particular neckline. Fortunately, many necklaces are ideal for complementing this collarbone-showcasing cutie.

amfAR's Inaugural Milan Fashion Week Event - Arrivals
credit: Stefania D'Alessandro/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Rachel Bilson boasts an attractive neckline with a mandarin-collared dress.

Long and Layered

New York Times TimesTalk Hosts An Evening With Neil LaBute And Friends
credit: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Kerry Washington strung on the pearls with her mandarin-collared top.

As a popular neckline for blouses, dresses, jackets and tops, there are few accessories the mandarin collar hasn't seen. One stylish statement layered over this tailored neckline is a necklace with length. Utilizing length in any style or type of necklace adds to the already elongating nature of the mandarin collar and creates a lean, stylish aesthetic. Pearls, beads, chains and pendants all work at length with this pleasing collar.

Peter Pan

LoveGold Celebrates 2013 Golden Globe Nominee Julianne Moore
credit: Noel Vasquez/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Singer and actress Alona Tal gets bold and funky with a Peter Pan necklace on her mandarin neckline.

Since a mandarin style is a timeless staple and doesn't seem to ever go out of style, pairing super trendy accessories with this neckline is a definite do. A recent trend in necklaces is the Peter Pan collar style. Layered right over a mandarin collar, the Peter Pan necklace creates an interesting dual collared appearance and adds bold style to this popular staple. Whether jeweled, metallic or even cloth, this trendy accessory draws the eye to a well-flattered neckline.


Premiere Of Universal Pictures' "Paul" - Arrivals
credit: Jason Merritt/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Actress Blythe Danner has a strand of pearls coyly peaking from beneath her mandarin-collared jacket.

When seeking a polished and sophisticated aesthetic from the mandarin collar, look to necklace essentials. A simple strand of pearls works for everything from jackets to boatnecks, so there's no reason it won't do the trick for the mandarin collar. A simple diamond or precious stone pendant also works well resting at the collar bone, framed by the mandarin neckline. Whatever it is, be sure it's layered beneath the collar to eliminate the necklace competing with the neckline.


Alice + Olivia - Presentation - Spring 2012 Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week
credit: Craig Barritt/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images
Kourtney Kardashian leaves here mandarin collar alone and lets the lace details steal the show in this ensemble.

For mandarin collars that come high on the neck or have jeweled or lace details, the perfect necklace selection might be none at all. Allowing the mandarin collar to be the star of an outfit can be a wise choice, particularly for well-embellished ensembles. There is always such a thing as overdoing a look and remembering what Coco Chanel said -- remove one accessory before leaving the house -- can be true for any style of neckline.