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Metals Encyclopedia


We work with a range of metals in our studio to service a variety of styles, price points, and skin sensitivities. We want to insure that you and your jewelry will get along well so please check out our metals encyclopedia below to learn more about them. 

 

B R A S S

Jeweler's brass has a rich yellow shine which patinas to a deeper antiqued finish with wear. The brass we use is recycled and of a jeweler's quality. Brass resembles 14k gold at high polish yet is a much more cost effective option. 

Care: Brass is most affected by environmental elements such as water, natural oils, sulfur in the air and humidity. While some people prefer the softness of brass with patina, you can easily use a polishing cloth to return its bright shine. To maintain this shine over time, it is best to store your brass jewelry in an airtight container when not in use.

Sensitivity : Brass is best for those without a history of metal sensitivity. All of our  brass earrings have sterling silver posts and backings.


S T E R L I N G • S I L V E R 

Denoted by a 925 stamping, sterling silver is made of 92.5% fine silver and 7.5% copper. This alloy provides additional strength to silver which is very soft in its pure state, and is ideal for creating jewelry that will last through years of wear. 

Care: Sterling is meant to be worn, since its shine is maintained and protected through contact with your skin’s natural oils. Tarnish/oxidation occurs when the copper in the silver reacts to moisture and sulfur in the air. Sterling silver tarnishes most quickly in areas of high humidity, like sitting out on your bathroom shelf, or in urban/polluted environments where there is more sulfur in the air. It's best to remove your silver jewelry when swimming, showering, or working out. Since tarnish does not accumulate in dry environments, your sterling jewelry should be stored in an airtight container or bag or alongside a silica pouch. Luckily oxidation on sterling is easily removed with a polishing cloth, or a good scrub with 2 parts water to 1 part baking soda mixture.

Sensitivity: Sterling silver is a great option for those with skin sensitivity since it is hypoallergenic. For most, the 92.5% purity will not create irritation, but for extremely delicate skin the copper alloy in sterling may cause reaction. In such cases we recommend the most skin friendly metal: gold  

 

G O L D • F I L L

Jeweler's brass heat bonded with 5% thickness-by-weight of 14k gold. With a life span of 10-30 years, your jewelry's shine will last far beyond that of a thin gold plating. The 14 karat finish has a lighter moon-lit tone which pairs well with any mixed metal.

Care: Gold fill jewelry is durable and water resistant but for longevity's sake it's best removed before showering, swimming or applying your favorite scents and lotions. 

Sensitivity: Gold fill is a great option for those with sensitive skin because the outer layer of the jewelry is comprised of a thick layer of 14k gold. Although once the gold wears away the base metal, brass, will be exposed and those with very sensitive skin may react to it.


G O L D • V E R M E I L

Developed as a gilding technique in 18th century France, gold vermeil is a thick electro-plating of high karat gold over a sterling silver base. Amongst traditional jeweler's metals, gold vermeil is second only to solid gold. We first make our gold vermeil pieces in solid sterling silver before having it plated with 100 mils of 23.5 karat gold. With proper care, this thickness allows for years of daily wear. While very high karat gold is a deep yellow, we have our vermeil pieces toned resemble 18k gold. 

Care: Just as with any piece of jewelry, gold vermeil should be stored with care in a soft pouch or box. Although more resilient than a thin plating, it is still best to remove vermeil pieces before showering or working out. 

Sensitivity: 23.5k gold is the only metal to have skin contact in our gold vermeil pieces, making them a great option for those with very sensitive skin. Once the gold wears away, sterling silver (a hypoallergenic metal) is the base metal so it is a perfect choice for those with very sensitive skin. 


S O L I D • G O L D

An heirloom precious metal and the decided favorite of humans and magpies alike. Our gold pieces are solid 14 karat unless marked higher. 14k is a mainstay in our line for its light buttery color and durability. 

Care: Solid gold jewelry is 100% gold so it is perfect for those who want to wear their jewelry 24/7 and never worry about a the surface wearing away or changing color. Solid gold pieces will be with you for a lifetime, and passed down for many more to come, so treat them in kind. Store in a soft box or bag when not wearing, and gently scrub with warm water from time to time to maintain its finish.

Sensitivity: Simply the best option for extremely sensitive skin. It is the least reactive of precious metals and a perfect pair for your skin's pH.