by Joy Jones

During the Victorian era it was popular for the well-dressed lady to accessorize herself with a long chain, often called a Slide Chain, Guard Chain or Muff Chain.  These chains held a practical purpose as they were often used to hold a watch, locket, fob or perhaps a lorgnette.

antique slide chain

antique slide chain photo

Because of the long length, often averaging between 48" to 64" inches, these chains could be worn many ways and were most often draped across the bodice, tucked into a belt at the waistline or worn in a single long length.

Antique Victorian Slide Chain Group

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Chains could be purchased at a local jewelry shop in both precious and non-precious metals and many styles included "slides" which were used to adjust the length of the chain.  Often slides were adorned with gems, pearls, rhinestones and sometimes were engraved with monograms or initials.

Here are a few of my favorite ways to style antique Victorian Slide Chains:

Victorian Guard Chain

The chain is doubled and worn as a plain necklace with the slide showing as an accent piece.

Victorian Locket Necklace

close up locket

Doubled and worn with a jewel attached.  Here I've added a stunning English Victorian era locket from my shop.

layered chain

Layered chain style with a locket attached.

Victorian slide chain

Worn long for a classic look.

lockets and chains

These beautiful and collectable chains are still popular today because they layer so well with today's style and fashions and because you can change out and attach different jewels on your chain for a different look.  Very much the same reason they were popular during the era of Queen Victoria!


Photo References:  Victorian Jewelry by Peter Hinks,  Pinterest,  Joy Jones Jewelry

Joy Jones
Joy Jones


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