If you’re the kind of person who loves to accessorize and you go wild when walking into a jewelry store, the next few paragraphs are guaranteed to put your mind – and wallet – at ease. For a women – and often men too – buying trinkets is a matter of both style and passion, but it’s easy to walk into a showroom and get carried away. If you don’t have restrictions or guidelines you’re bound to burn a whole through your pocket.
Start by knowing exactly what it is you are paying for. Some things sound fancy at the jewelers – for example gold vermeil and sterling silver – but you have to know that the former means gold plated and the latter a combination of silver and base metal, and you should not land up overpaying for either.
Let’s go through the basics of what’s out there – right on top are the precious metals, precious and semi-precious gemstones and real pearls. These, (gold, platinum, diamonds, emeralds, ambers and the like) consist of Fine Jewelry. You should definitely own a few, but never try and make all your jewelry fall in this category. Buy the most frequently used in gold and diamonds as its purity tends to be soft on the skin, or the most extravagant where the metal and stones really make a statement.
Often set with semi-precious or precious stones are the base metals. These are frequently plated, which is when real knowledge comes into play. Precious metal plated jewelry often tarnishes, exposing your skin to the base metal, so it is taken for granted that these aren’t for daily use, and even if you want to expand your collection but not spend too much, buy a few only for occasional use.
A part of plated metals is Gold vermeil, sterling silver plated with gold – which is better than the former but still does scrape off. If you want to buy jewelry cheap, I would recommend plated Fashion jewelry – both in terms of cost and style – but don’t expect them to last forever.
If you don’t want to go all out for expensive gold jewelry for everyday wear, Filled of Overlaid gold is the ideal option. Though it seems like plating, it is has a much higher concentration of gold and doesn’t tarnish easy. It also allows for a great variety in style – so go get yourself an entire range of hoops, semi hoops, studs and danglers at an extremely reasonable price, and no one will even be able to tell that they are filled!
Pure Silveris a soft metal, but some may like the look of it when it oxidizes and gives a hint of antiquity – and though prices are rising this is the ideal time to buy.
An alloy of 92.5% silver and the rest base metal is known as Sterling silver – a sturdier version of silver itself, but skip it if you are sensitive to metals. Along the same lines is Argentium silver which is tarnish resistant and doesn’t require polishing. Both of these are ideal for inexpensive casual party wear, along with fashion jewelry. You get an unbelievable assortment of cuts and colors, inlaid with all grades of stones, crystal and pear, and you will have no problem with your budget even if you splurge!