Precious Metals

Yellow Gold

.  Precious  .  Timeless  .  Classic  .

 

Yellow Gold is bright, warm, and boats the famously rich lustrous golden hue. Gold has precious significance and highly prized throughout history. In the ancient world Egyptians were the main producers of Gold, they introduced gold in art and admired it as a divine and eternal metal. Similarly, the ancient Greeks imagination revered that Gold was crafted from water and sunshine. Its beauty and radiance has been ever popular and used in jewellery and precious adornment for over 6000 years. Today, Gold has become a most popular symbol of precious metals. Gold is considered as one of the finest choice to create wide range of the high end and fine jewellery, especially Engagement Ring and Wedding Rings.

Gold has some amazing properties to work with, it’s malleable and ductile so it can easily be designed and crafted into a range of creative jewellery pieces. It can polish to a glossy finish or be given a matt, brushed, hammered or milgrain detailing to create your precious jewellery.

The Pure gold which is known as 24 carat gold or gold bullion is a very soft and not ideal for modern everyday day jewellery. Pure gold is generally alloyed with other metals to enhance its hardness, strength and durability. In this alloying process, the proportion of gold to alloys is defined by the carat number which measures the parts of gold out of a total 24 parts. In the UK, 18 and 9 Carat gold are more commonly used to craft jewellery, still 22 and 14 Carat choices are available.

 22 Carat Yellow gold

  • 22 carat gold has 22 parts gold and 2 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 91.6% gold and 8.4% other alloy metals, by reason of 916 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 916 found in 22 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, silver, copper and a fraction of zinc are usually alloyed to create 22 Carat Yellow Gold.
  • 22 Carat Yellow gold has a luxurious warm bright yellow hue and is the purest gold carat available in jewellery. With the maximum content of pure gold 22 carat is hypoallergenic in nature. This carat of gold is very soft, and it is not recommended for stone set or an elaborate fine jewellery. 22 Carat is highly priced and being more appropriate for gold chains, plain jewellery or a plain wedding Ring.

 18 Carat Yellow Gold

  • 18 carat gold has 18 parts gold and 6 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 75% gold and 25% other alloy metals, by reason of 750 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 750 found in 18 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, silver and copper are usually alloyed to create 18 Carat Yellow Gold.
  • 18 Carat Gold is a richer, warm bright yellow colour hue as compared with 14 or 9 carat yellow gold. 18 carat gold is a perfect balance between gold purity and strength. 18 Carat is strong, durable and does not tarnish, corrode or react with your skin. With the high percentage of gold, 18 Carat is a premium choice comes with little higher price tag. This is an ideal gold carat for crafting precious fine jewellery pieces, engagement and wedding rings that need to wear every day and last for a lifetime! 18 Carat is generally used for jewellery across the UK.

 14 Carat Yellow Gold

  • 14 carat gold has 14 parts gold and 10 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 58.5% gold and 41.5% other alloy metals, due to 585 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 585 found in 14 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, silver and copper are usually alloyed to create 14 Carat Yellow Gold.
  • 14 carat gold yellow colour will hue between 18 and 9 carat gold. 14 carat makes a lovely selection for colour and cost between 18 and 9 Carat Gold.

 9 Carat Yellow Gold

  • 9 carat gold has 9 parts gold and 15 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 37.5% gold and 62.5% other alloy metals, by reason of 375 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 375 found in 9 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, silver and copper are usually alloyed to create 9 Carat Yellow Gold.
  • 9 carat gold is little paler yellow colour when compared with 18 or 14 carat gold.

9 Carat has the lowest content of pure gold, which may compromise in strength, but bringing great price advantage and crowned as the most affordable gold carat in jewellery. Your jewellery may demand more attention and regular caring, like a professional clean and polish to preserve its glory. 9 Carat gold is widely used for mid-range to budget jewellery across the UK.


 

White Gold

.  Vivid  .  Modern  .  Contemporary  .

 

As white gold does not occur naturally, white gold is yellow gold alloyed with other metals such as palladium or silver to get its warm white gleaming hue. With the 1920’s Art Deco fashion trend white gold become ever popular. White gold has a modern contemporary appearance and provides an excellent backdrop for diamonds and gemstone mounted designs. White gold stands as a lovely alternative to other white metals such as platinum, palladium or silver. Today, white gold set a finest fashion standard and become number one choice in modern day jewellery as well as regarded as the ‘traditional’ metal choice for engagement rings, wedding rings, eternity rings and fine jewellery.

Like yellow gold, white gold is alloyed to 18, 14 or 9 Carat purities. The proportion of gold to alloys is defined by the carat number which measures the parts of gold out of a total 24 parts.

18 Carat White Gold

  • 18 carat white gold has 18 parts gold and 6 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 75% gold and 25% other alloy metals, by reason of 750 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 750 found in 18 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, Palladium usually alloyed to create 18 Carat White Gold.
  • 18 Carat is the highest purity of white gold.
  • 18 carat white gold has a gun metal white colour, but as an industry standard white gold is rhodium plated to obtain its brilliant white glossy sheen like platinum. There is no visual colour difference when you compare a brand-new rhodium plated 18 carat with 14 or 9 carat white gold jewellery.

14 Carat White Gold

  • 14 carat white has 14 parts gold and 10 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 58.5% gold and 41.5% other alloy metals, by reason of 585 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 585 found in 14 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, silver and palladium are usually alloyed to create 14 Carat White Gold.
  • As jewellery standard, white gold is often rhodium plated to get its brilliant white glossy sheen like platinum. There is no visual colour difference when you compare a brand-new rhodium plated 14 carat with18 or 9 carat white gold jewellery.

9 Carat White Gold

  • 9 carat white has 9 parts gold and 15 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 37.5% gold and 62.5% other alloy metals, by reason of 375 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 375  found in 9 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, silver usually alloyed to create 9 Carat White Gold.

9 carat white gold is a slightly yellowy white colour as compared with 18 carat white gold.  But as a jewellery standard, white gold is often rhodium plated to get its brilliant white glossy sheen like platinum. Generally, there is no visual colour difference when you compare a brand-new rhodium plated 9 carat with18 or 14 carat white gold jewellery. The lower content of gold may reflect with some compromises in strength and tendency to tarnish or corrode quickly. Your jewellery may demand more attention and regular caring, like a professional polish and rhodium plating to preserve its glory. 9 Carat gold is widely used for budget and mid-range jewellery across the UK.


Rose Gold

.  Romantic  .  Fashionable  .  Trendy  .

 

Often known as the “romantic metal”, the trendy Rose Gold was first appeared in jewellery during the early 19th century.  Rose gold is an admirable metal alloyed with pure gold and copper to create its charming rosy red hue. Rose gold gained popularity throughout the 1920’s when Louis Cartier designed the “Trinity Ring” with yellow, white and rose gold.  Just after the mid 1950’s, rose gold was become the favourite choice for jewellery designers. Today, Rose Gold is a trendy metal adds a touch of love and romance to your jewellery. Rose gold is an exceptional choice for traditional designs required distinguished detailing or to craft fashionable pieces or even combined with two coloured rings to offset the more traditional white or yellow gold. As a trend here to stay, rose gold is in fashion all around as a stylish and elegant alternative to yellow and white gold.

Rose Gold (or some named as Pink Gold) comes from a pure gold and alloyed with copper. Like yellow gold and white Gold, the Rose Gold is available in 18 and 9 Cart Purities. Based on carat purity, the rose colour and hardness may differ.

18 Carat Rose Gold

  • 18 Carat rose gold has 18 parts of pure gold and 6 parts of copper-based alloys making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 75% pure gold and 25% copper alloys, by reason of 750 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 750 found in 18 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, copper and silver are usually alloyed to create 18 Carat Rose Gold.
  • 18 Carat rose gold has been found to be the perfect balance between gold purity and strength.
  • 18 Carat rose gold has a rosy yellow pronounced hue as compared with 9 Carat rose gold. Lower rose gold carats have more copper content, the larger the ratio of copper, the richer the rose coloration will be.
  • 18 Carat Gold is strong, durable and does not tarnish, corrode or react with your skin. With the high percentage of gold, 18 Carat is a premium choice. This is an ideal gold carat for crafting precious fine jewellery pieces, engagement and wedding rings that need to wear every day and last for a lifetime!
  • 18 Carat is commonly used for jewellery in the UK.

14 Carat Rose Gold

  • 14 carat rose has 14 parts gold and 10 parts of other alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 58.5% gold and 41.5% other alloy metals, by reason of 585  parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 585  found in 14 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, copper and silver are usually alloyed to create 14 Carat rose Gold.
  • 14 carat gold rose gold colour will balance between 18 and 9 carat gold and makes a lovely choice for colour and cost between 18 and 9 Carat Gold.

9 Carat Rose Gold

  • 9 Carat rose gold has 9 parts of pure gold and 15 parts of copper-based alloy metals making the total of 24 parts.
  • Or in simple terms 37.5% pure gold and 62.5% copper alloys, by reason of 585 parts of gold per 1000, the Hallmarking stamp 585 found in 9 Carat Jewellery.
  • With pure gold, copper and silver are usually alloyed to create 18 Carat Rose Gold.
  • 9 Carat rose gold has a beautiful rich rose-pink coloured hue compared with 18 carat rose gold due to the larger the ratio of copper alloys.

9 Carat has the lowest content of pure gold, which bringing the price advantage and become an affordable gold carat in jewellery. 9 Carat gold is widely used for budget and mid-range jewellery as well as If you are looking for its rich rose colour then the 9 carat is the best option.


 Platinum

.  Pure  .  Rare  .  Eternal  .

 

Platinum is an extremely rare metal. It is dense, ductile, naturally hypoallergenic, metal with glossy white lustred shine. Platinum has a notable history, known to be found in ornamental treasures in ancient Egypt more than 3,000 years ago. The South American Inca Indians also used platinum to adorn their artifacts. The word platinum was derived from the Spanish term platina, meaning “little silver”. As a controversy, the Spanish people considered platinum to be far inferior to silver and its value was dropped during the 15-16th century. During the 1800’s its qualities are acknowledged and crowned back to precious metal.

Favoured by its remarkable strength, longevity, and beauty; today, platinum is regarded as the prestigious choice to mount the fine diamonds and valuable gemstones, especially in engagement and wedding rings. Due to its purity, exceptional resistance and hard-wearing nature, platinum become a practical and glamorous choice for everyday fine jewellery. Platinum Designs are a luxurious choice as a family heirloom to pass it down through generations.

Platinum is available in 950 or 500 purities. At Autumn and May, we only offer the most superior Platinum 950 fineness.

Platinum 950

  • Platinum Jewellery has 95% pure Platinum and 5% of alloy metals.
  • Or in general terms 950 pure platinum parts per 1000 parts, hence the Hallmarking stamp 950 found in Platinum Jewellery.
  • Palladium, rhodium, iridium, copper or titanium are the most common alloy metals mixed with platinum.
  • Platinum is very dense, around 88% heavier 9 Carat gold, 34% heavier than 18 Carat Gold and four times stronger than gold.
  • Only a few hundred tonnes of platinum produced yearly around the Globe and it is the most expensive of all precious metals in Jewellery.
  • Platinum has remarkable resistance to corrosion, hypoallergenic properties and considered as a noble metal.
  • Platinum requires very little maintenance as it does not tarnish or discolour and is far less malleable than Gold.

Do not require rhodium plating.


Palladium

.  Modern  .  Nifty  Contemporary  .

 

Palladium is an incredibly strong, rare, ductile, naturally hypoallergenic platinum family metal, thus share a lot of chemical properties with platinum. Palladium was discovered in 1803 by the British chemist and physicist William Hyde Wollaston, who later discovered Rhodium as well. Palladium is named after the one of the largest asteroid “Pallas”, which was discovered a year earlier. Palladium has a lustrous silvery white sheen and been used as a precious metal by Jewellery Designers since 1939. Palladium gained even more popularity in jewellery when platinum was declared as a strategic metal During World War II. Palladium price has fluctuated over the years, and sometimes was more expensive than platinum. The British Assay Office started Hallmarking Palladium in July 2009, this reflected with immense popularity and dramatic demand in palladium Engagement and Wedding Rings.

Today palladium become more fashionable and gaining enormous admiration. Palladium revered as an elegant sophisticated precious metal and is even more beautiful, when mounted with diamonds or precious gemstones, its natural white hue is a great backdrop for diamond setting.

Like platinum palladium is available in 950 or 500 purities. At Autumn and May, we only offer the most superior Palladium 950 fineness.

Palladium 950

  • Palladium Jewellery has 95% pure palladium and 5% of Ruthenium (platinum family) alloy metals
  • Or in general terms 950 pure Palladium parts per 1000 parts, hence the Hallmarking stamp 950 found in Palladium Jewellery.
  • Palladium has a desirable, platinum-like appearance but lighter and affordable in comparison to Platinum.
  • Palladium requires very little maintenance as it does not tarnish or discolour and is far less malleable than Gold
  • It is almost impossible to see any difference when you compare a plain palladium and platinum Rings.

Do not require rhodium plating.


 

 

Sterling Silver

.  Eminent  .  Traditional  .  Precious  .

 

Silver is one of the oldest standing precious metals mined by pre-historic man to create objects, ornaments and jewellery. Silver has a lovely milky white lustrous hue, which spark to the nick-name “metal of the moon.” The word “silver” derived from the ancient Greek word “argyro”, “άργυρο”. Silver known to be more precious and was more expensive than gold in Egypt during the fifteenth century BC. When “Sterling” was broadly recognised as a standard of English currency, the term, “sterling” now refers to the highest purity of silver became part of its common name – “Sterling Silver”. Silver is mined all around the world, although Peru is known to have the highest amount of silver available. Sterling silver is a relatively inexpensive precious metal and become primary choice by contemporary designers.

925 Sterling Silver

  • Sterling Silver has 92.5% pure Silver and 7.5% other copper-based alloys.
  • Or 925 pure silver parts per 1000 parts, hence the Hallmarking stamp 925 found in Silver Jewellery.
  • The copper alloy enhances its hardness, strength and durability but causes the silver to tarnish over time.
  • The 925 standard that determines whether the jewellery should be designated as “Sterling Silver” or pure silver, anything less than 92.5% do not qualify as sterling silver.
  • Sterling Silver is the least expensive precious metal.
  • Silver can be transformed into different purities, although most silver designs are exclusively made of sterling silver.
  • The fine silver has 999 parts pure silver per 1000 parts. The fine silver does not tarnish but extremely soft to use in jewellery. The Fine silver mostly used as investment bullion or trade metal products.
  • Some Britannia silver has 958 parts pure silver per 1000 parts.

Oxidized Silver

Oxidised silver jewellery is essentially darkened Sterling Silver. The surface has been carefully darkened through a chemical process called oxidisation. Unsurprisingly the surface patina colour occurs when the silver jewellery introduced to sulphides and creates a layer of silver sulphide on the surface by giving it the blackened look. Oxidised blacken finish is a surface highlight and just occur on the top layer of the jewellery. Over time, depending on the usage and wear-and-tear the oxidisation may wear off and the silver will shine through. Oxidised silver jewellery should be cared separately and should not be cleaned with jewellery cleaning dips or harsh chemicals or aggressive polishing which may shred off the blackened detailing.

When required cleaning, only use a mild detergent and very soft toothbrush with as little rubbing. Oxidisation can be done any time at Autumn and May, simply contact us or ask a member of staff.

 

 


Titanium

.  Strong  Ultra-light  .  Hypoallergenic  .

 

Titanium is an incredibly strong yet amazingly light weight, naturally hypoallergenic, metal with gorgeous grey colour. Titanium was discovered in 1791 by the British mineralogist William Gregor and named after the Titans of Greek mythology. Titanium is resistant to corrosion in sea water, chlorine or many other house hold chemicals, making it perfect for those who with allergies sensitivities and to be worn in demanding environments. Titanium has the highest strength-to-density ratio of any metallic element and this ultra-light weight nature is one of the most unique characteristics. Titanium jewellery is more resilient to bending and scratching or it won’t loose its shape in comparison with pieces made from other precious metals.

Jewellery Designers recognised its remarkable qualities and introduced to their work in the 1990’s.  At Autumn and May, we only favour pure grades of titanium to craft our Designs. Experience taught us that the 99.2% pure grades of titanium have the best properties to create jewellery. Titanium is particularly brilliant for everyday jewellery like Wedding Rings, or for hypoallergenic earring and body jewellery. Its masculine grey tinted colour makes exceptional popularity in men’s ranges of Jewellery,  such as plain Band Rings, Cufflinks, bold Chains, Men’s Cuff-Bangles and Bracelets.

Titanium Colour

We understand titanium’s most amazing feature to take on a whole spectrum of colours. The naturally occurring colourless oxide layer on titanium can be altered by a process known as anodic oxidation. Anodising allows us to control, vary and adjust the thickness of the surface oxide layer, which in turn causes optical interference colours to become visible. The principle is same as the colours seen in nature and those in a soap bubble or oil on water. By precisely controlling the surface oxide level a spectrum of colours on the can be achieved.  During the process a specific anodising electric voltage applied to the part to determine and obtain the desired colour.  Titanium anodising is not a coating nor a dyed colour. This oxide layer of colour is reasonably robust and will not fade but is liable to become damaged caused by abrasion.

Titanium Re sizing

Most Jewellers will tell you that Titanium Rings cannot be re sized due to its properties and extreme strength. Our workshop applies modern techniques with traditional hands on approach to create unique titanium pieces. We are able to offer you the peace of mind of a re sizing service on Titanium Rings.

Facts about Titanium

  • Titanium is 99.2% pure.
  • As strong as steel but 45% lighter.
  • Titanium is the ninth most abundant element in the Earth’s crust.
  • Titanium is hypo allergenic, there for kind to your skin.

Titanium is not Hallmarked as it is not a precious metal.


 

Rhodium

.  Gloss  .  Elegant   .  Shielding  .

 

Rhodium is a rare, strong, corrosion resistant, naturally hypoallergenic noble metal with silvery white glossy shine belongs to platinum family. Rhodium was discovered in 1803 by the British Chemist and physicist William Hyde Wollaston soon after his discovery of the fashionable precious metal – Palladium. Rhodium plating is an electro plating process and adapted to jewellery industry in the early 1930’s due to its portraying characteristics, quality, and elegance, and its plating help to protect the white gold. Rhodium does not affect by water or heat up to 600 degrees.

As a modern-day jewellery standard, almost all white gold designs are enhanced with rhodium plating to give a brilliant white glossy lustre. Jewellery Designers also introduced rhodium plating to their silver jewellery in order to enhance its appearance with white glossy sheen and to prevent the jewellery from tarnishing.  Although being strong, subject to the usage and care, rhodium wears away over time and may reveal the pale white or yellowy coloured white gold underneath. This is less of an issue for occasional jewellery or earrings that do not come in contact with other items. Restoring rhodium plating is a simple process, this will reinstate the shiny gloss appearance and bring back the original brand-new look to your jewellery. This can be done any time at Autumn and May, simply contact us or ask a member of staff. You can also request your white gold rings without rhodium plating, by adding a note during the checkout while placing your order.