First published: 26-11-2015

What do I need to know about buying beads and charm bracelets?

Article date: Tue 27th January 2015 03:32 PM
What do I need to know about buying beads and charm bracelets?

A pretty charm bracelet or necklace can be a really fun way to show off your personality. Whether you load up the chain with one or ten charms and beads, you can pick almost anything you like to decorate it, from cupcakes to shamrocks and everything in-between.

They can also work really nicely as an ongoing gift, with a new charm or bead given every birthday, so if you are looking for something to give to the special lady in your life, this could be perfect.

Take a look through our hints and tips to figure out which beads and charms will be right for your bracelet or necklace.

The chain

Before you even start to think about the beads and charms, you first of all need a bracelet or necklace chain onto which you can attach them. So what are the options?

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There are two main styles of chain that you can look for. The first can be found as both a bracelet and a necklace, and is made up of a series of interlinked sections which you clip the charms into.

This silver Royal London item is a perfect example. As well as attaching charms, you can slide beads onto the chain as well, which should be anchored into place if you have charms on either side.

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The other very common style is more typically seen as a bracelet, with a stretchy structure to fit over your hand and onto your wrist. Taking this black Giorgio Martello bracelet as an example, you would only be able to attach charms, since there is no way of opening up the chain to attach a bead.

There is a ready-made link for attaching a single charm, but others could be clipped in-between the different segments of the bracelet, so there is still plenty of room for personalisation.


Beads are typically a round band with a hole through the middle, which can fit onto a bracelet or necklace. These can be as ornate or subtle as you like, and in fact don't even have to be round at all - so long as they have a section through which you can fit the chain.

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Chamilia have a wide collection of beads that range from the very subtle to the more unusual. This rounded lavender one is an example of a more traditionally 'bead'-like design, with a pretty colouring that will complement a lot of other shades, from darker blues and purples, to black and even white or more neutral outfits

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On the other hand, this gingerbread man bead is hardly rounded at all, with just the exposed section through the side to indicate that it is a bead at all. This demonstrates how creative you can be with your choice of bead, and how personalised these bracelets can really be.

If you fancy taking a look through the whole range of beads, you can find them here.


Much like beads, you can be as outrageous or not as you like when it comes to charms. From animals to telephone boxes, you can pick out whatever objects you like to decorate your bracelet or necklace, making it tailored to you and your tastes.

Charms, depending on what they are designed to look like, can vary a lot in terms of size, so consider this whilst deciding where different items on your bracelet or necklace may be best placed. The trick is to avoid too many larger ones being clumped together - this will prevent everyone from being able to see all the different items. To show them all off, give them adequate space to shine.

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The range of charms is so vast, you can really go to town on choosing something you love. If you've got a real sweet tooth, a cupcake charm might be perfect for you, and if you're a football fan, look out for a charm with a little football on it.

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If you'd rather go a bit more subtle, try something as simple as a pearl or diamond stud to decorate your bracelet or necklace. If you like having lots of charms, but don't necessarily want any 'quirky' ones, you can populate the chain with lots of these subtle charms - this would look really elegant if you want a charm bracelet for a formal or black tie event.

Furthermore, this gives you a lot of freedom if you have bought a charm bracelet or necklace as a gift for someone, as you can buy them different charms to commemorate certain events. For example, if they have recently started a new job or have something exciting to celebrate, a champagne charm would be perfect.

For further inspiration, take a look through Watch Shop's collection of charms here. We've also compiled a selection of hints and tips if you need help styling up your bracelet or necklace.

Decorating a charm bracelet with pretty, personal beads and charms can help you create an accessory that will really showcase your individuality. With the right combination of different items, this can be something you treasure forever, adding new charms for every special occasion.

Buying beads and charms - What to bear in mind | Watch Shop


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