GOLD FACT FILE
UNDERSTANDING GOLD PURITY
For thousands of years, gold has been treasured by artisans and jewelers, craftsmen and their customers alike. One of the reasons it is so attractive in this way is due to its malleability; it’s a soft and easily shaped metal, which can be teased into various forms to suit the jeweler’s wishes.
Because pure gold is so soft, crafting jewelry and other items from it is very difficult, and it’s likely the item itself will easily bend out of shape.
As a response to this problem, jewelers long ago came up with the brilliant solution of mixing gold with other stronger and more durable metals, in order to add some resilience to the blend.
In order to understand what type of blend your item uses, and how much pure gold there is in it, you need to look to the 'karatage' - the system for indicating the purity of the gold.
The symbol for this is represented by a ‘k’, preceded by the level of purity of pure gold within the mixture, as follows:
24k (not used at all in jewelry due to softness) – 100% pure gold.
22k (also not used at all in jewelry) - approx 91.7%.
18k – this karatage is about 75% pure gold.
14k – this karatage is about 58.5% pure gold.
If you'd like to know more about the karatage used in our gold wedding bands and other pieces of gold jewelry, we'd love to hear from you.
THE COLORS OF GOLD
Can you imagine the thrill of discovering the first nuggets or flakes of gold, shimmering in a river or a seam of rock at the dawn of civilization?
The color of gold has inspired artists and craftspeople for countless generations, who originally saw it as a gift to the earth from the sun itself.
The beautiful golden yellow color we associate with gold is not the only option out there, though - jewelers have created different colors associated with different karatage gold types, such as:
When gold is kept in its pure form, and combined with other metals of a similar shade, it maintains the intense, vivid color we associate with pure gold. The most common alloys used in yellow gold are silver and copper, which have red and green hues. These complement the stunning sunshine-colored metal’s original tone, while bolstering its durability.
Sometimes referred to as ‘red gold’ or ‘pink gold’, this combination of alloys is stunning as it is unique.
Based on pure gold with a percentage comparable to other gold types, rose gold achieves its distinctive blushed hue through the use of copper, and other metals which display a similar reddish hue.
Although referred to as white gold, this beautiful alloy is actually silvery, light and airy in color. The final shine which white gold pieces display is created by adding a plating called rhodium, which brings a distinctive shimmer to the metal.
Although the rhodium plating may wear off in time, we will always be happy to offer a re-plating service for our customers, in order to restore that original glimmer.
Unique, modern and effortlessly sleek, this beautiful colored metal is created by adding a layer of black rhodium over a base of white gold, right at the very final point of the crafting process.
As with a white gold rhodium finish, the plating may wear away in time, but we will be only too happy to assist in re-plating the ring if necessary.
MAINTAINING THE BEAUTY OF YOUR GOLD JEWELRY
We know you want to take the best possible care of your gold ring or gold wedding band. Thankfully, keeping your gold jewelry clean is as easy as can be, so long as you keep a few key points in mind.
Firstly, be aware that although gold jewelry will not tarnish in time, it can be negatively affected by powerful chemicals such as chlorine.
Make sure you remove your gold jewelry, and put it in a safe place while you are doing household chores using such chemical products. Secondly, your gold rings can be kept clean of grime and dust by washing them regularly with soap and water, or brushing with a soft jewelry brush.