Guide to chain types and chain styles

Everything you need to know about chains for jewellery making

Curb chain, figaro chain, trace chain… Feeling a bit overwhelmed by the number of different types of chain links?

Don't panic! We will help you decipher all that and tell you all you need to know about chain links.

Selecting the right chain link can be a tricky decision to make when you are looking for a necklace or a long necklaces, a bracelet or an ankle chain. Indeed the type of link is a very important step when you are creating jewellery, it needs to suit the client's taste and the type of jewel you are making.

Different styles of chains on a jewellery bust All kinds of silver and golden chains used for jewellery making

Two classics chains:

  • Trace chain: One of the classics in jewellery! The name in French for the links was inspired by the convoys of prisoners who were attached to each other by chains (forçat). In English the name is fairly generic for many chains and its origin is unclear. The angles of these links can be squared or rounded. This chain comes in open (elongated), flat or diamond-cut trace chain.
Trace chain style
  • Belcher chain: Characterized by the alternation between round links and oval links, it is an easy and pleasant chain to wear. 
Belcher chain style

More masculine models of chains:

  • Curb chain: One of the better known chain types. The chain is made of fine, slightly flattened rings. Links may also be filed which increases the overall facetting on the chain.
Curb chain style
  • Open curb chain: The open curb chain with its longer oval links is a stylish alternative to the classic curb.
Open curb chain style
  • Figaro chain: Made from similar open curb links, figaro chains differ due to the alternating short and long links. Figaro chain comes in different variations, simple -one short,one long, double -two short, one long and triple -three short, one long link.
Figaro chain style
  • Coffee bean chain: The chain is made up of coffee bean links connected with distinct oval links. Coffee bean chains and bracelet were made popular in France through the French rap scence
Coffee bean chain style

The chains to keeping links with fashion:

  • Anchor chain: Anchor chain is takes its name from its inspiration, the chains used for ship's anchors. The links are oval with a bar accross their middle but they can also be round or flat.
Anchor chain style
  • Snake chain: The chain reminds us of the scales on a snake's back - giving the name to the chain. This chain can also come in flat or round finishes. 
Snake chain style
  • Ball chain: ball chain, as it's name suggests is a made up of a succession of balls linked together with sectionss of wire. Please note that this type of chain requires special ends in order to attach clasps etc.
Ball chain style
  • Rombo chain: Slender, elegant round links come together to create a lightweight, fluid chain.
Rombo chain style
  • Singapore chain: Made up of small intertwined links, this chain twists elegantly along its length. An original, fashionable choice.
Singapore chain style
  • Paloma chain: The structure of this chain is very modern looking, its ideal for creating fine, feminine pieces. 
Paloma chain style


Assortment of gold chains


Fancy chains: 

Heart chain style
Heart chain

Hollow rope chain style
Hollow rope chain
Double rombo chain style
Double rombo chain
Trace chain with balls style
Trace chain with balls
Sunray trace chain style
Sunray trace chain
Six-sided anchor chain style
Six-sided anchor chain
Wheatsheaf chain style
Wheatsheaf chain
Spiga chain style
Spiga chain
Box chain style
Box chain


You can also discover our complete collection of chains in finished jewellery.

Chains are available in different metals (18k gold, 9k gold, gold-plated, 925 sterling silver, stainless steel...), in different lengths and wire diameters. We regularly update our selection.

Why wait, choose your selection online straight away!


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