I’ve been a fan of Helen Anderson’s jewelry for years. She has traveled the world to search out and collect the most unique pendants, precious stones, bones, and metals that she spins into masterpieces. I’m a big fan….

I wanted to show you some of Helen’s beautiful pieces and also share what she has taught me about layering necklaces. There is a way to layer 2 or 3 necklaces to create an interesting, unique look that appears completely original!

As you read on, I’ll explain some of Helen’s layering techniques.

First, let me point out that Helen’s color palette is a True Colors COPPER, which is what many of you know as AUTUMN. She wears chartreuse with ease, as well as teal, red brick, plum, and mustard yellow.

Here is Helen modeling three layers of copper necklaces over a chartreuse cashmere sweater and denim leggings. One layer of copper just wouldn’t be enough!

Same chartreuse sweater. Three different necklaces. Torquoise and silver chunky short necklace, silver pendant on chain, and longer torquoise on chain. Helen adjusts the lengths of her necklaces specifically for layering so each piece is showcased.

If you think chunky necklaces are reserved for tall or large women, think again. Helen is a diminutive 5’3″ and she ROCKS her chunky styles!

If you prefer a more delicate look, try layering necklaces such as pearls and gold chain necklaces to create an elegant, simple look.

 The background of Helen’s black tunic shows off two beautiful torquoise necklaces.

Same black tunic, different necklaces made of chunky amber, Bakelite, bone, wood and ebony. See how the colors complement Helen’s skin tone and hair, and pop off the black top. It’s no accident that her neckline opening and the amber pendant meet at the same location.

Another way to break up a basic black outfit is by adding layers of pearls, as Canadian singer, Nelly Furtado does below.


If you’re wondering how to determine what length your necklaces should be, you have two ways to figure it out.

  1. The first way is to use a tape measure and literally wrap it around your neck and stretch it down to the different points you want your necklaces to fall. Write down the lengths and take the measurements with you when you buy necklaces.
  2. The second way is to locate three locations on your body: Your collar bone (ideal for choker styles), your sternum (just above your point of cleavage — ideal for pendants), and your belly button or just above (for long chains). For small-breasted women, a location just below your sternum works well, too. But, if you have larger breasts, your necklace will not lay smoothly at this location, so it’s better to keep necklaces above your bust line. 

I love Helen’s teal-colored tunic paired with quartz crystal, fresh water pearl, gold tone agate, and vintage metal beads below. Simple and elegant.

Helen Anderson (pictured above) is a jewelry designer and local San Luis Obispo resident. She designs original necklaces and earrings, but she will also take a treasured piece of jewelry and completely redesign it into something you’ll enjoy wearing every day. I’ve given her several old pieces that I never wore, and Helen re-purposed them into beautiful necklaces.

Helen always says that a beautiful necklace will transform a t-shirt and jeans outfit into something special! If you’d like to get in touch with Helen, you can send her an email at oakmede@aol.com.

I hope this article inspires you to rediscover all the necklaces you’ve been saving for a special occasion, and layer them over everyday outfits to create a special, original look that brings you JOY!