Gold is one of the three noble metals of the Earth (in addition to silver and platinum). A noble metal is a metal that is resistant to corrosion in water and can be worn without worry of any harmful reaction. It is a soft metal in comparison to other metals and for this reason, is appropriate for gold jewelry crafting.
Attributes: Physically, having a tendency to conserve its energy, gold is considered a mineral with calming and warming effects, recommended for people who chronically suffer from cold. Mentally, gold is perceived as a symbol of prestige, wealth and success and gives its wearer energy of purity.
"Carat" (k), the unit in which the purity of gold is measured, is based on a division of 24 basic parts. 24 carat gold, which is the purest degree of gold, is a very soft metal and for this
Silver 925 is the international standard used in the jewelry industry and in silver crafting. Since pure silver is a soft metal for use in silver crafting, a small quantity of copper is added to harden it and give it the required strength. Silver 925, known as Sterling Silver is composed of 925 units out of a thousand (92.5%) and 75 parts (7.5%) of copper and other metals.
a. In contact with air (as a result of its natural moisture).
b. In contact with a person's skin, especially in summer when moisture is greater.
Silver jewelry should be removed before entering a pool (due to its chlorine content) or hot spa containing sulfur.
1. Use a silver polishing cloth that contains a special silver cleaning product. The cloth should be kept in a closed bag to prevent evaporation of the cleaning product.
2. When a polishing cloth is not sufficient, jewelry should be handed over to a professional jewelry cleaner. Professional cleaning is carried out in 3 stages:
Cleaning – The jewelry is put into a metallic vessel with chemical cleaning products for removal of tarnish. Tiny metallic pins or balls suited to the type of jewelry create friction between the jewelry and the cleaning products and thus ensure a thorough cleaning of the jewelry in every nook and cranny.
Shining – During the cleaning process, it may happen that the natural shine of the silver is somewhat spoiled. The shining process refreshes this and gives the silver a renewed lustrous, rich look.
Polishing – In the final stage, a polishing process ensures a perfect finish.
Oxidation of silver – Oxidation, which darkens silver, may be applied as part of the design of the finished product. This is to be distinguished from tarnish, the result of oxidation, which has occurred naturally to silver, over time. Oxidation is carried out by immersing silver in an acid called oxide (hence the name of the process). The oxide penetrates into all the grooves and darkens the jewelry. When the intention is to darken only parts of the jewelry (for example, only the grooves), the other parts are cleaned. The jewelry is then shined and polished in order to obtain a perfect finish. Oxidation gives jewelry a special antique, ethnic look.
Gold-filled is produced by a chemical or electronic process which bonds a layer of 12-14k gold on a base layer, thereby creating a material called gold filled. The percentage of gold in the metal has to be a minimum of 5%.
Gold Plated – Base metal (Silver, Brass, etc.) with a thin coating of 0.5 – 5 microns of gold. The carat of gold plating ranges from 14k – 24k. The gold plating process is a chemical one and any metal can be gold plated. The actual plating can wear off with time but can be renewed.
When is Assaying Compulsory?
1. When gold jewelry exceeds 2 grams in weight (earrings, 4 grams)
2. When the gold weight of the jewelry exceeds 20% of its total weight, for example the gold in silver jewelry combined with gold)