Pearl Choker Necklaces on the Catwalk

Which item of jewellery should be on your wishlist to accessorise with the new Autumn/Winter 2011 fashions?

The pearl choker is set to become one of this season's hottest jewellery accessories. Pearl chokers first became fashionable in the second half of 1800s with the influence of Alexandra, Princess of Wales who wore short necklaces and high necklines to disguise a small scar on her neck.

But this year Chanel, Valentino, Donna Karan, YSL, Bottega Veneta, Hermes, Emilio Pucci and Alexander McQueen… are just a few of the designers and brands that reference the choker with the season’s trend for a revival of Forties fashion.

A pearl choker necklace is a 14 to 16 inch (35-40 cm) necklace that nestles in the hollow of the neck or just above it. There are many variations of this short necklace with materials that include fabrics, gold and diamonds, feathers and pearls. A torsade can be a short necklace, made with twisted strands of white or multi-coloured cultured pearls.

The look of a choker can also be created by wrapping a long pearl rope necklace around the neck in layers.

Among the A/W 2011 season's collections, Donna Karan’s Pearls of Wisdom collection stands out. Its colours are pale, grey, silver and sand, the materials used are tweed, silk, fur and wool, the lines are fitted, luxurious and feminine.

We also love the look of Erickson Beamon’s chokers of matching faux pearls that complement and finish Donna Karan’s glamorous designs, sometimes using large pearls over 1cm in diameter. These are worn in single strands or in torsades and are accessorized with discreet matching earrings.

If you prefer the natural silver and grey colour of Tahitian pearls or the natural lavender colour of Freshwater pearls to the colour of faux pearls, then a real pearl choker will be the accessory to have for this winter.  The complexity of a real pearl's natural lustre, its warmth next to the skin and silky surface would add beautiful detail to the 1940s styling.