Metals are indispensable when it comes to adornments. Through out the recorded history of man, different kinds of metals were in use for jewellery making.
Precious metals like Gold, Silver and Platinum are extensively used for jewellery because of the lustre and properties like malleability and ductility. When the pliable properties makes them easy to work with, the distinct colours and lustre makes them exquisite.Expensive metals are exclusive and rare compared to their counterparts which will add the inherent value in its scarcity.
Gold is the most popular metal in the jewellery industry. Gold has some spectacular features which makes it perfect for jewellery. Gold, with its high lustre and unique colour stands out in the crowd of other metals when it comes to beauty. Besides its aesthetic appeal, gold is highly malleable and ductile which makes it easy to sculpt and mould into complex and highly detailed designs. Gold is extremely un-reactive so that it wont get dull easily over time unlike other metals. The bright colour, lustre and beauty of the gold will stay as it is for years.
In its purest form, gold has a unique yellow colour and is referred as 24 karat gold on the scale of purity. Gold is too soft to be used in its purest form for jewellery,hence it is often mixed with zinc or copper to add strength and reduce unintended deformations.
|Karat Measure||Gold Purity|
|24 Karat||100% pure gold|
|22 Karat||91.7% gold + 8.3% Other metal(s)|
|18 Karat||75% gold + 25% Other metal(s)|
|14 Karat||58% gold + 42% Other metal(s)|
|10 Karat||42% gold + 58% Other metal(s)|
Gold when alloyed with the different metals combinations can be transformed into different colours. Yellow gold, white gold, rose gold and green gold are the popular gold colours in the jewellery industry. Yellow gold was the most preferred gold colour but white gold is gaining its popularity for the last 30 years.
Silver is the second most popular metal in jewellery after the gold. Silver is lustrous,malleable, ductile and has low chemical reactivity, which are the basic properties that makes it excellent for jewellery making. Like gold, silver is also a soft metal and silver alloys are rather preferred for jewellery making than pure silver. The different types of silver are fine silver, sterling silver, Britannia silver, nickel silver and silver plate. Fine silver is the most purest form of silver with .999 level of purity. Sterling silver is the most common in jewellery which contains 92.5 % pure silver and 7.5 % copper. Since the sterling silver contains 92.5% pure silver, it is often stamped as .925. Britannia silver contains 95.84% silver, which is more expensive than sterling silver. Silver ornaments comes in two colour-ways, bright white and greyish white.
Platinum is one of the most expensive metals in jewelery making surpassing gold and silver. Platinum is predominantly used in engagement and wedding rings.Platinum is alloyed with iridium, palladium, ruthenium, rhodium and osmium for jewelery making. A jewelery to be labeled as made from platinum should have a minimum of 90% pure platinum in the alloy. Platinum is harder than gold and silver and have a higher melting point. Platinum has become a top choice for diamonds lately. The bright white colour and lustre of the metal compliments the sparkle of diamonds placed on it very well.