Thursday, December 01, 2005

Why use gold???

So you are thinking of using Silver !!!

Silver being less expensive than gold, sounds like a more feasible option to use instead of white gold. It values not only lesser in dollars per ounce but is also lighter in weight (mass) and hence lesser quantity will be used to create the same piece when compared to gold. (A 10 gm gold bangle will look bigger when made in 10 gms of silver). Usually in the jewelry market we use sterling silver for all purposes of strength and durability.

However, cost sometimes can truly buy quality. In this case, durability at least!!! Silver tarnishes fairly easily when exposed to the atmosphere due to reaction with sulfur present in minute traces in the air. The brownish tint caused by this reaction can be removed by cleaning with regular silver polish available in the market, however it is a repetitive activity. Also such frequent cleaning of the delicate product may render the stones loose from their setting. Silver is a softer metal than gold thus the prongs built in silver to hold the precious stones as well as the links can easily get damaged. Silver gets scratched easily as well.

Most of all, silver is white and only a temporary gold polish can give it the look of yellow present naturally in gold.

But for those who want the benefit of wearing jewelry crafted beautifully in good looking stones without living with the burden of the extreme expense accompanied, silver is a beautiful metal!!!

Why not Platinum you wonder !!!

Platinum is more durable than gold and is known for its hardness and it does not get scratched as easy. Thus very fine details (and faults) on the metal can be easily observed in platinum. It sometimes even looks whiter than gold when rhodium polished. Stones set in platinum are fairly safe from falling off because the prongs are relatively stronger and resist bending braking or wearing out. In short platinum is a more practical metal than gold.

It is however a very heavy metal and much more expensive than gold as well. (A 10 gms platinum bangle will look much smaller than a 10 gm gold bangle). The labor costs involved in handcrafting platinum jewelry is way more than the cost of making gold jewelry. The machinery and equipment are also more expensive for platinum jewelry because of more frequent wear and tear and harder quality which is a hidden cost usually involved in manufacturing platinum jewelry.

In short platinum is more practical metal to make jewelry in for everyday wear such as in wedding bands and engagement rings but for elaborate jewelry such as this one which is not worn so frequently as daily, it may prove to be an impractical expense.

Jewelry however is known to be an aspirational expense and I would not dissuade a person from indulging into platinum for the same reason as all of us love to buy diamonds!!!

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