It’s fair to say the TV adaptation of Sally Rooney’s Normal People has been a hit; the show delivered BBC Three’s best-ever week, and fans can’t get enough of one key part of the show: Connell’s chain.
The lead male character, played by Paul Mescal, wears the subtle accessory throughout the series, and eagle-eyed viewers are desperate to get their hands on one, too - so much so that there’s been a 500% increase in searches for Chain Necklaces on shopping app LIKEtoKNOW.it. Meanwhile searches on men’s chains are up 56 per cent on the Argos website, with a 15 per cent week-on-week increase in sales since the show aired.
WATCH: Normal People trailer
An Argos spokesperson said: "Connell’s chain has become an iconic fashion item overnight, showing that sometimes the best and most effective accessories are the simplest."
There’s even a fan account dedicated entirely to the jewellery on Instagram, and @ConnellsChain already has a massive 167,000 followers. Who knew we could all love a subtly sexy piece of jewellery so much?!
Incredibly, Paul says he doesn't even have the chain any longer. In an interview with Variety, he revealed that he actually gave the token to co-star Daisy Edgar-Jones as a wrap gift before it was temporarily lost during a photoshoot. He explained: "I gave it to Daisy and I'm not going to blame her for losing it! I gave it to her as a wrap gift with photographs at the end of filming. We then came back to shoot the poster for the show and I had to wear it and it got lost in all the costumes and stuff but [it was found eventually] and I think Daisy has it now. You can call off the search party!"
Thankfully, when the two co-stars appeared on The Graham Norton Show, she revealed she did have the chain after all - the costume designer for the show had it just in case they needed it for more shots. Phew! We were worried for a minute...
Shop Connell-inspired chains now
And if you’re tempted to stock up on one for your man? The good news is there are lots of styles for men - or women, since the humble chain has been one of fashion’s favourite items for a while now. These are the very best to shop - because if you can’t try something new in lockdown, when can you?
Paul has been photographed running around London during lockdown wearing a different kind of chain - this Otiumberg oval pendant which he had engraved with three initials. Yes, we're dreaming they were ours, too!
Oval pendant, £130, Otiumberg
In fact, he loves his chain collection so much, he has decided to raffle his Roxanne First chain from his jewellery stand to raise money for Pieta. Speaking about Pieta’s charity raffle, Paul said: "I am delighted to be able to help out Pieta by raffling off my chain that has taken on a following of its own since Normal People hit television screens. Pieta is a cause very close to my heart, having experienced loss due to suicide in my local town while growing up. Episode 10 of Normal People also touches upon depression and suicidal ideation, so it seemed like a very special partnership to want to help those in similar situations. I want to play my part in helping sustain these free services across Ireland."
These chains are more like the ones his character wears in the hit show...
Venezia chain, from £59, Thomas Sabo
Sterling silver chain, £69.99, Argos
Gold-plated sterling silver necklace, £18, ASOS
Blackened chain, from £69, Thomas Sabo
Chain necklace, £120, Missoma
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