If you are considering treating yourself to a new piece of jewellery, or perhaps buying something special for a loved one, you are probably wondering whether to choose gold or silver as the material. Both gold and silver make for exquisite choices. However, there are differences between the two, that might make one more suitable than the other.
Here at Bespoke Diamonds we sell a wide array of jewellery, spanning our beautiful collection of rings, earrings, bracelets and pendants. So if you’d like some help in making your mind up, here’s our low-down of both gold and silver.
Gold is a precious metal that makes for a very popular choice, especially for sentimental pieces of jewellery.
The purity of gold is measured in carats. Typically ranging from around 8 carats which is the lowest purity, right up to 24 carats which is the highest purity. However, the higher the carat content the lower the durability the piece is. For example, 24 carats is pure gold. But because of this material is quite soft, it’s generally considered unsuitable for rings. That’s why you normally find engagement rings to be 14 or 18 carats. This gives a high level of gold while still remaining durable.
It might seem like the colour of gold jewellery is pretty universal. However, there are actually three different colours you can purchase your gold in, which are as follows:
Yellow gold is how gold appears in its natural state, and has a warm tone to its appearance. If you are searching for an engagement or wedding ring, then yellow gold is typically used. Also, it is the easiest material for jewellers to re-shape. Therefore, if you are not sure of the ring size it makes for a sensible choice.Click here to see an example of a Bespoke Diamonds yellow gold piece.
For those who prefer a cleaner look to their gold, white gold makes an excellent choice as it coated in Rhodium. It makes for a cheaper alternative to platinum rings, as white gold has a similar colouring without the higher costs associated. In addition, its coating adds durability to the piece. However, the coating will wear off in time and will require re-coating periodically for a small fee.
Rose gold has been enjoying a surge in popularity in recent times. It is comprised of a blend of 24 carat gold, copper and silver, which gives it strength and durability. Rose gold doesn’t tarnish, however, can appear darker over time due to the copper that is used in its creation. Many actually prefer this look, as it makes the piece appear more vintage and unique the more it is worn.
There is a misconception that gold jewellery only suits warm skin tones. However, as gold is available in white, yellow and rose gold, it is a very universal material. To check if you have a warm or cool undertone to your skin, take a look at your arm. If your veins appear more green than blue, then it’s likely you have a warm skin tone and would suit yellow gold jewellery best. If you have a fair, cool undertone to the skin then white or rose gold would best compliment your skin tone.
Silver is another precious metal that is also commonly found in jewellery. It has less value than gold, meaning it’s more affordable to buy. However, it is unlikely to appreciate in value, to the same level that gold will over time. The reason for this is that more silver has been mined compared to gold. And because silver is less rare, it’s also the least expensive.
Silver jewellery is more commonly referred to as ‘sterling silver’. Sterling silver has a purity of 92.5%, and the piece should be accompanied by a hallmark that confirms this. It’s common to find sterling silver jewellery, especially set with diamonds, due to the complimenting blend of colours between the two. However, you’ll usually find lower diamond carat rates set in sterling silver. This is due to the material not being as durable as gold.
Fine silver is 99.9% pure, meaning it usually isn’t durable enough to be used on its own. Because of this, fine silver is usually combined with other metals such as zinc, nickel or copper, as this gives it added durability.
Silver with high purity rate is also prone to tarnishing or scratching, and can also lose shape over time. However, if you give care to your silver jewellery it can last much longer. Restoring silver from being tarnished to having a brilliant shine is fairly straightforward. However, this will need to be done on a much more regular basis than if the piece was made out of gold.
The lower price point is what attracts people to silver, and that’s often what the final choice between the two comes down to. If you are not looking to purchase an expensive investment piece such as a wedding or engagement ring, silver is a much more accessible place to start
Silver is also considered more complementary to cooler skin tones. Because unlike a gold such as yellow gold, it doesn’t have warm brassy tones. If you have a cooler skin tone, the veins in your arm will appear bluish instead of green.
If you are buying jewellery as a present, then it makes sense to factor in the material of jewellery the person currently wears. One of the main reasons for this is because many people like to wear the same material for rings, earrings and pendants, rather than a combination of gold and silver.
With silver jewellery, resizing becomes more problematic. Therefore, when buying an engagement ring for example, choosing gold over silver would be a much better choice. Otherwise, you could find the material isn’t strong enough to be resized. This means you’d either need to settle for a poor fit, or buy a new ring which is far from ideal.
As gold is available in three very contrasting tones, it gives you the option of resizing and finding the right match for your skin tone. However, gold does come at an increased price compared with silver, meaning it’s more of a considered purchase that requires some research to get right.
Finally, some people have an allergy to particular metals used to create jewellery. Therefore, it’s a good idea to check with the person before buying, as one material may be more suitable than the other. You may have even noticed an irritation yourself when trying on certain metals, so keep this in mind before you buy. Here at Bespoke Diamonds, we have a store in Dublin as well as being online, meaning you can try before you buy, so that you can make the best purchase decision.
Here at Bespoke Diamonds, we know that buying jewellery is a special and considered purchase. If you are unsure whether to choose gold or silver jewellery for your next piece, why not pop into our Dublin store for further advice?
Alternatively, you can call us on +353 (0)1 68 55 800, where our friendly and knowledgeable team are waiting to help.
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