Demi-pointe wonders about buying a pendant:
"First, I am considering the Tiffany small bean necklace as an every day piece with round neck and v-neck "t-shirts" and dresses. I thought I remembered you made a suggestion regarding small pendants on silver chains as being a bit twee for the over 50 set... I am also thinking of the opposite look as in a long leather necklace with an edgy smallish pendant."
Dearest Demi, think hard before buying any piece of jewelry typically given as a Sweet Sixteen, bat mitzvah or high-school graduation gift, and that is a frequent association: the Teen Bean. If a woman has a pretty little Bean from her past, she might give it to a young niece or attach it to a charm bracelet as a keepsake.
Original and interesting
If you desire a Tiffany piece, trade up to the Paloma Picasso Marrakesh pendant, womanly and graceful in silver on a black twist cord; price, $500.
Small pendants work as long as they aren't too bitsy for your build; if you fall for something tiny and you aren't, add more layers, such as a heavier-gauge chain.
A truly tiny pendant–such as a lone 4mm pearl–only flatters fine-boned women with swan necks. Even then, if the motif is girly (hearts, hugs and kisses), the effect is too junior.
Pyrrha, the Vancouver-based firm I've mentioned in my two posts on amulets, make sterling pendants that have a timeless quality, and they are not overexposed. On the web site, click Monograms to find this winged dove pendant, cast from an antique seal.
Price includes up to three initials engraved on the piece. Price, $210; includes an 18-inch cable chain.
Here's a Bean alternative: Etsy seller Elephantine offers a Thai origami bead just over a half-inch wide, on a silver chain (23 inches, but can be ordered any length); check photo showing it on a v-neck on the site.
I also see this layered with a string of pearls. Price, $38. (Thanks to commenter Veuve for her intro to this seller.)
I've been wearing pieces by Etsy seller Red Sofa since I met jeweler Joanna Szkiela at a local art show last summer. Her silver and bronze Roman Coin necklace is on my wish list thanks to its antique/modern feel. Three coins on a twenty-inch silver chain. Price, $75.
I also suggest gems as pendants, especially moonstones and pearls, which go with everything.
Rainbow moonstone on a double-stranded silver and gold chain (included). Notice the detail around the 7/8-inch pendant: 18k wire wrapping and tiny squared silver beads. By Dana Kellin; price, $194 from Twist.
Check the pearl pendants at Kojima Company,
my favourite unusual pearl source. They have many varieties, some shown on a leather cord.
Choose a superb pearl like this baroque Kasumi, $180 (now s/o but owner Sarah Canizzaro will send you photos of similar ones on request).
You said edgy?
What do you think of Etsy seller Amie
Plante's trumpet shell with black pearl, Demi? Price, $100, pendant only, and available in various finishes.
Digby and Iona's Rakish Hand necklace ($320) is a 1 1/2 inch hand (wearing its own gold pinky ring set with a 1pt. diamond) on a sterling 28-inch chain. The folks at Catbird describes this piece as bad ass. Agreed.
You did not specify a budget, but if it hits four figures, Ileana Makri's Sea of Life charm in diamond and white gold, is a hip hit of glam. Hang from your own chain or silk cord. Price, $1,100 from Barneys. (I'm reluctant to show diamonds set in silver; precious stones are more vulnerable to loss set in soft metal.)
Perhaps an antique?
A 2-inch antique silver locket with blue enameling, monogrammed FZ, would hang from a long chain; antiques have more mystery than modern pieces. $295 from Etsy seller neederbug.
I wish you an adventure, Demi-pointe, looking for the piece that speaks to you. Good luck and please tell us what you choose!