The history of the choker necklace

For centuries, choker necklaces have crossed different chapters of history, and each century presents us with a new example and a new symbolic value of these jewels. We can see their historical presence in various cultures around the world, including Egyptian, European, Native American, Chinese, and even Indian cultures.

Their symbolism and meaning have undergone rapid changes throughout history, from being symbols of political aggression, to ornaments specifically used to identify prostitutes, and finally, to intricate pieces of jewelry that have become the trend of the season. In this article, we will take a detailed look at all the notable historical facts and symbolic stories regarding the importance and meaning of choker necklaces .

Lemon Necklace

Lemon Necklace 9Avril Paris

1507: ANNE BOLEYN

Most people don't know that it was Anne Boleyn who started the exciting choker trend. Anne Boleyn was undoubtedly one of the most fashionable women of her time, and in a conservative English society, she introduced many trends inspired by her love of fashion discovered during her time at the French court .

She was always seen wearing a cute choker necklace, which can also be seen in her paintings, and this famous necklace was created with pearls, and a pendant of the letter B, which she also wore around her neck .


Avé Cauris Choker

Choker Avé Cauris 9Avril Paris

1789: THE FRENCH REVOLUTION

The French Revolution was a tumultuous period of political aggression and revolt against the French monarchy. Of all the symbols used by the French people to express their hatred of their monarchs and extravagant nobility, chokers were undoubtedly the most powerful and poignant.

choker necklace


Women began to wear political dress with a red ribbon around their necks, in tribute to all those who were massacred by the guillotine. This ribbon was worn in several different ways, around the neck as a simple choker, or tied at the back and shoulders to create an X.

1860: OLYMPIA BY MANET

In the 1860s, chokers were considered ornaments reserved for prostitutes. This statement is attested by the famous painting Olympia, painted by Manet in 1863, which represents a prostitute displaying a ribbon in the form of a necklace around her neck.

1800-1900: THE VICTORIAN PERIOD

Although chokers were seen as symbols of prostitution in some parts of Europe, they enjoyed great popularity in England, particularly during the Victorian era. The royals were also seen sporting pearl chokers along with other necklaces and pendants. And as can be seen in Edgar Degas' paintings from the 1870s and 1880s, ballerinas wore chokers in their dance costumes.

Queen Victoria was seen wearing chokers in the various portraits taken during her reign, and Princess of Wales, Alexandra, was extremely famous for her love of chokers. It is said that she used the chokers to hide her scar, which she had after an operation as a child. The beautiful Alexandra was extremely aware of the ugliness of this scar and, during her various stays in India, she became passionate about the exotic trends in Indian jewelry, notably the chokers that she brought home and which became a real fashion among the women of the court and the nobility.


Princess Alexandra profoundly influenced the fashion of her time and the trends she created, including her love of chokers, which were flaunted for another 50 years or more after her death. Society and gentry women, as well as other wealthy women of Victoria's era, sported chokers adorned with pearls, crystals and jewels to create fashion fit for a queen!

choker necklaces

Choker necklaces by 9Avril

1920S & 1940S: VINTAGE CHARM

The Roaring Twenties saw an opportunity to indulge in the delicate femininity of chokers, and women were seen sporting the trend with ribbons, pearls, crystals, pearls and more. However, back then they were not called chokers, but rather dog collars.

Dog collars, as they were called in Paris, began to undergo countless variations and soon women could choose and sport them in a wide variety of materials, including ribbon, velvet, beads, lace and even diamonds. Needless to say, they were the symbol of elite glamour.


In 1944, Life magazine created an iconic article aimed at reigniting the trend of dog collars, which were increasingly being worn by both dogs and men.

THE 90S: DOG COLLARS BECAME CHOKERS

As with all trends, the '90s were the height of all things fashionable, and chokers attracted a lot of attention during that time. Around that time, we saw chokers make their way onto the stage with Christian Aguilera and Britney Spears, while Gwyneth Paltrow and others sported it on the Oscars red carpet.


Soon, chokers underwent a bold gothic makeover and women began sporting chokers with pentagrams, gothic accents, spiked collars and even silver ball chains. As if that wasn't enough, designers decided to introduce the tattoo choker, which turned out to be an incredibly adorable and affordable accessory, and became the most popular prom adornment. year in the United States. These tattoo collars were usually made of plastic and had a mesh design with rough textures.

FROM 2015: THE RENEWAL OF THE NECKLACE

It goes without saying that 2015 was the fabulous year that propelled chokers to the forefront of the fashion scene, and from then on, they became a regular runway accessory. Today, chokers come in a wide variety of materials, fabrics, patterns, color palettes, ornamentation and textures. You can choose embroidered floral chokers, applique chokers, brass, striped, jeweled, beaded, heavy chains, metallic details and even butterflies.

With a history dating back over 500 years, it's amazing how chokers have evolved into the raging trend we're all flaunting today.


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