There are several metals, both common and uncommon, used in jewelry making. Each metal offers unique properties, characteristics, and appearances, making them suitable for a variety of jewelry pieces. Here are some popular metals used in jewelry creation:
Argentium silver is a modern silver alloy that contains a higher percentage of silver than traditional sterling silver, as well as a small amount of germanium. This combination makes Argentium silver more tarnish-resistant, hypoallergenic, and brighter than traditional sterling silver.
Blackened silver is a form of oxidized sterling silver that has been intentionally darkened to create a black or dark gray patina. This is achieved through a process that involves exposing the silver to a chemical solution or heat. Blackened silver is popular for its bold and edgy appearance, and it is often used in contemporary and alternative jewelry styles.
Gold is a highly sought-after precious metal known for its lustrous yellow color, resistance to tarnish, and malleability. It is often alloyed with other metals, such as copper or silver, to increase its strength and durability. Gold purity is measured in karats, with 24 karats being the purest form.
Rose gold is an alloy of gold and copper, which gives it a distinct pinkish hue. The proportions of gold and copper can be adjusted to create various shades of rose gold. It is popular for its unique and romantic appearance and is used in various types of jewelry, including engagement rings, necklaces, and bracelets.
Silver is another popular precious metal used in jewelry making. It is known for its bright, white metallic luster and relatively low cost compared to gold and platinum. Sterling silver, an alloy of 92.5% silver and 7.5% other metals (usually copper), is commonly used due to its increased strength and resistance to tarnish.
Tantalum is also known for its impressive durability and resistance to scratches, making it a suitable choice for those with active lifestyles. However, it is essential to note that resizing or repairing tantalum jewelry can be challenging and typically requires specialized equipment or returning the piece to the original manufacturer.
Vermeil (pronounced "ver-may") is a type of gold-plated silver jewelry. It is made by coating a base of sterling silver with a layer of gold, typically at least 2.5 microns thick. Vermeil offers the appearance of gold at a more affordable price, but the gold layer can wear off over time, especially with daily wear.
White gold is an alloy of gold and other white metals, such as palladium, silver, or nickel, which give it a silvery appearance. It is often plated with rhodium to enhance its brightness and provide a layer of protection against tarnishing. White gold is popular for its contemporary look and is commonly used for engagement rings, wedding bands, and other fine jewelry pieces.