Yellow gold has a rich history and would be a classic choice for your wedding bands. Pure gold is naturally yellow in color and very soft. To create more durable options pure gold is alloyed (mixed) with silver and copper, resulting in the different karats of gold. I recommend working with 14kt or 18kt for their strength and quality. It is important to note that all precious metals will show scuff and scratch with daily wear. 14k is the more durable option.
ROSE GOLD & PEACH GOLD
Alloying can also create different colors of gold. Yellow and red golds are both mixed with silver and copper, but subtle shifts to the amounts used will result in a range of colors. Rose and red golds usehigher levels of copper and less silver, but still contain the same amount of pure gold per karat as yellow gold.
Peach gold is another color option and falls in between rose gold and yellow gold. I have found that it can be a great color match to vintage European rose gold engagement rings, which are less copper in color then today’s rose gold.
STANDARD & PALLADIUM WHITE GOLD
Standard white gold pure gold that is alloyed with nickel to give it its white color. Nickel makes the gold incredibly durable, but also more brittle to work with. Unfortunately because of this we do not offer it as an options in our fabrication workshop. However it is an option for hand carving workshops and ordering custom bands. It is also important to note that nickel is the most common metal allergy and the cause of why many people are allergic to white gold.
Palladium white gold is also a very durable option and wonderful to work with. This option is slightly grayer in color than nickel bearing white gold. Palladium white gold is available for both fabrication and hand carving workshops. Palladium white gold also tends to be the safer bet for sensitive skin.
A note on rhodium plating: It is standard practice to rhodium plate white gold giving it a bright white color. Over time the plating will wear off exposing the true color of the metal, so jewelers often recommend that you have it "touched up" every so often. We do not plate any of our metals, this means that your ring won't be a perfect match to your engagement ring if it is rhodium plated white gold. Standard white gold is slightly more yellow and palladium white gold is a little more grey without the plating. But when they are polished the difference is subtle and most of the couples I have worked with say that they can't see the different. Some people choose to have their engagement ring re-plated just before the wedding so that it is bright and shinny. You can have your wedding band plated at the same time, with the same jeweler so that they are a perfect match.
Palladium is a member of the platinum family and shares many of the same characteristics with its cousin platinum, including its “liquid surface” and durability. Palladium is not as rare and is also less dense than platinum, resulting in a very similar metal at a fraction of the cost. Palladium is slightly darker in color than platinum but can be very versatile, with a brushed finish it appears more grey in color, but can also be polished up to whiter silver color. Due to the strength and durability that makes this a great metal to wear, it also makes it more difficult to work in. Because of this do not offer palladium as an option in the fabrication workshop, only in the hand carving method.
Known for its bright white silver color and common use in jewelry, sterling silver is a beautiful material to work with. It is easy to form, texture and polish. Many couples choose to work with sterling because its price is substantially lower than other precious metals. It is important to note that while sterling silver is strong enough to be worn daily, it is a very soft metal and prone to scratches and changing shape over time. Many people, including myself, appreciate the way that silver wears and ages. But if you want a ring that will keep its original finish longer, I would not recommend silver. Be sure to consider the pros and cons on silver wedding bands.
Q: Can you recycle my existing jewelry into a new ring?
A: Unfortunately, no. The recycled metals that we use come from a refiner who specializes in recycling precious metals such as silver, gold, palladium, and platinum. By the time we work with the metals they have been through a refining process to "un-alloy" the metal to bring it back to its pure state and then remixed in a new alloy. I currently do not melt down or re-work existing jewelry. If the piece is not sentimental and you would like to use it to trade in for the value of metal I recommend sending it to a trusted refinery. You can then use that money toward your rings, a great way to keep the recycling process going!