There has been a debate raging on for some time as to what the best alternative – Silver Jewellery or White Gold Jewellery. That is why I wanted to take a few minutes to set the record straight. I will cover the major characteristics of each metal, and how ultimately, silver prevails in the age old debate.
White Gold Jewellery
Jewellery made up of gold tends to be much more refined and in turn, more delicate. It is often used to create pieces like dainty brooches, and delicate necklaces. It is also sometimes paired with gemstones which are used to represent the overall value of the material.
White gold does contains some gold, but it is not pure as it contains a mixture of other metals as well. It might look like silver at first glance, but there are several things that set it apart, one of the most notable aspects is color.
Since white gold is made up of a mixture of other alloys and pure gold, the color can vary from piece to piece. It can range from anything of a cool white color to a slightly warmer tone, depending how much pure gold is mixed in. You will not find the same silver tones in white gold as you would in silver and it tends to be brighter as well.
White gold does have the advantage that it is easier to care for over silver as it doesn’t oxidize in air or moisture and it can retain its sparkle without needing to be kept in special containers or cleaned regularly.
Although white gold won’t tarnish easily, it is still a very soft, malleable material that will require extra care and consideration. Since it is usually about 50% gold, it is quite soft compared to silver. This does give the advantage that it can be crafted into finer, thinner pieces of jewellery, but these can easily be damaged, sometimes beyond repair.
The value of white gold is higher than silver, and the price really depends on the amount of gold that can be found in it. The downside to this, however, is that with the ever skyrocketing prices of gold on the market, it is not cost efficient for artisan to produce gold jewellery at affordable prices like you can get with silver jewellery.
Silver can have a much bolder appearance than gold and you can wear a chunky piece without it looking gaudy or overdone. It is considered to be youthful, artsy, and earthy. Although it is not just limited to youth, as it can be used to flatter anyone with cool skin tones and goes great on someone with silver gray hair.
Although silver is a basic element, it is hardly ever found in its pure form. Most silver jewellery is actually sterling silver, find out more about sterling silver jewellery here, and it is around 92.5 percent pure, with small amounts of other materials like copper.
It is very easy to recognize silver by its color, as it will be a grayish white and gives off a brilliant sheen. It is best paired with either amber pendants like these, or garnished with gemstones in the green, blue and purple families.
As I mentioned before, silver does require a bit more maintenance than white gold jewellery as it can oxidize of left exposed to moisture in the air. Silver should be stored properly, and you should follow these top tips for caring for silver jewellery.
Although pure silver is a malleable material, silver jewellery is still harder than white gold jewellery so it is much more durable. This does mean that it is harder to create more delicate pieces, but it still can be made by hand when crafted by skilled artisans. Since it is a bit harder material, it often looks heavier and can usually take on chunky characteristics.
Silver is considered to be a precious metal, however, as I mentioned earlier, it does have a lesser value than gold. There is a benefit to this as it is more affordable for the general public, and it is possible to own a beautiful piece of high quality jewellery at an affordable price.
Now that you know the main characteristics that sets white gold and silver jewellery apart, I just wanted to mention a few more reasons why silver jewellery has become more popular than its white gold counterpart.
Many fashion designer look at silver as canvas for elegant designs. Sterling silver can be crafted into such a wide range of styles form traditional tribal motifs all the way to slick modern designs. In fact, Tiffany & Co has focused on expanding their silver collection as it has become trendier in recent years. When asked about this recent shift, Tiffany & Co has stated that consumers are now holding back on shelling out higher amounts of money on white gold jewellery when they can get a heavier, higher quality piece made of sterling silver. Other retailers like Pommellato has also premiered silver jewellery at Milan Fashion week.
If you ask me, the benefits of choosing silver jewellery over white gold jewellery are pretty obvious; however, at the end of the day it does come down to you and your personal taste.
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