No other celebration quite epitomizes indulgence like Mardi Gras, yet there’s nothing decadent about the festival’s customary plastic beads. Why not indulge in something a little more luxurious? We’ve compiled a plethora of beaded necklaces that you will most definitely want to keep for yourself and should not throw at parade revelers.
For example, consider Wendy Yue’s emerald beads, which are the epitome of decadence and glamour. They feature an equally stunning one-of-a-kind black jade pendant embedded with a milieu of precious gemstones, perfect for the fashion-conscious carouser.
Shamballa, the Danish brand that has made its mark selling upscale beads, has just the item for diamond lovers. Their faceted white diamond and gray diamond beaded necklace might be the coolest and most unexpected way to wear major bling. The pearl necklace, the most classic of jewelry items, can also be the perfect Mardi Gras accouterment—if it’s the right strand. Try Mastoloni’s long, 40-inch necklace with different shades of exquisite Tahitian pearls, which can easily be doubled or even tripled up if celebrations call for it.
For the true Mardi Gras devotee, Ippolita has a necklace in the authentic Mardi Gras color palette, representing purple, green and gold with amethysts, peridot and, naturally, 18-karat yellow gold. Meanwhile, Mallary Marks hits all the hues of the rainbow in her festive 18-karat gold beaded necklace, which combines gems like rubies, sapphires and tourmalines.
Arman Sarkisyan creates an ultra-elegant version of the Mardi Gras style with lapis lazuli beads, combined with open metalwork designs in silver and accented with a couple of large beads in solid gold. Sylva & Cie also uses gold beads, opting to mix them with bright turquoise and the blue trend continues with designer Rosanne Pugliese’s aquamarine strand.
For a true statement piece, look no further than John Hardy’s multi-strand necklace, with beads of black mother of pearl and gold. They’re connected with a gold and diamond clasp shaped like the head of—wait for it—a mythical water dragon.
The best thing about a luxurious strand of precious beads? They’re a versatile jewelry box staple. They can and should be worn long after Mardi Gras (and its inevitable accompanying hangover) is over, to inject every occasion with a touch of over-the-top decadence.