Coin beads. Lentil beads. Saucer beads. Call them what you will, these flat beads added a dash of colorful plastic to many an outfit of the 1980s. I’d all but forgotten about them until an Ebay search for ‘80s jewelry produced a flat-beaded necklace amidst a heap of selections, from toy-like charm necklaces to rubber bracelets.
But it was the flat-beaded necklace that grabbed me, and I was instantly reminded of the mauve version I wore as a child. It probably looked way too old for me at the time, but unlike the jumbo geometric T-shirts that I shouldn’t have worn then and still shouldn’t be caught dead in now, I wondered if perhaps I’d grown into these necklaces…
Good news! Like your favorite chunky vintage beads, these flattened ‘80s strands have held up well over time and create a retro look when worn with vintage dresses like the one pictured below:
They can scream ‘80s, but they don’t have to. Note the diamond shape of the beads in this next photo (pictured with a nautical sweater by Forever 21):
We may not be able to get away with wearing ‘80s plastic charm necklaces to anything but theme parties, but isn’t it nice when certain 1980s baubles find their way back into our daily wear?
Keep your eyes peeled for flat-beaded necklaces at garage sales, estate sales and vintage boutiques. Happy hunting!