Commonly used for fine jewelry, gold is prized for its everlasting allure, longevity, and value.
At Brilliance, we coat each of our white gold pieces with a protective plating of Rhodium, a gleaming, near-white metal coating that's comparable in appearance to platinum.
Renowned for its gleaming luster and denseness, gold is known as the softest and most pliable natural metal. In its purest form, gold is bright yellow in color, but is often mixed with other metals, such as silver and copper, to form a more durable alloy that's more resistant to everyday wear and tear. Additionally, these alloys help color gold and produce shades of white, yellow, and rose. At Brilliance, we specialize in high-quality 14 karat and 18 karat pieces, the standard for fine gold jewelry.
There are various grades of gold purity, determined by the ratio of their alloy composition and rated by a karat system. Typical karat purities range from 10 karats to 24 karats (pure gold), with a wide variation of usage from country to country. In the United States, the most popular composition is 14 karat gold.
Below are some of the most common gold densities, along with the characteristics and pure gold content of each:
In its purest form, the metal is comprised of 100% gold with virtually no alloy metals. Pure gold is extremely soft and pliable, which is why it's often mixed with other metals, such as copper and silver, to forge jewelry.
This level of gold is 91.7% pure which is still too soft to make jewelry and not as durable as 18K or 14K.
This alloy consists of 75% gold and 25% alloy metals. 18 karat gold has been found to be the perfect balance between gold purity and strength. Brilliance offers a variety of exquisite 18 karat gold jewelry.
14 karat gold is 58.3% pure gold; the remainder is comprised of alloy metals. Any gold purity less than 14 karat gold is not recommended for high quality jewelry.
This tier of the metal consists of 41.7% gold. This is the minimum purity that can still be considered gold in the United States and is not used for high quality jewelry.
Some countries use a required hallmarking system to imprint each gold jewelry piece with the karat count. Hallmarks for gold will typically appear as the karat weight (for example, 18 or 14) followed by 'K', 'KT', or 'karat'. Although this is not a government-mandated law in the United States, Brilliance stamps each piece of gold jewelry with the karat weight as a means of ensuring a confident, informed jewelry shopping experience.
Due to its inherent softness and malleability, gold is rarely used alone when forging a jewelry piece. Instead, it's blended with other fine metals to lend more hardness and durability. When pure gold is combined with these other metals, it takes on a variety of rich shades that have become desirable in their own right. At Brilliance, we offer an assortment of contrasting hues in our fine gold jewelry:
The most popular shade of the precious metal, yellow gold is used to create a majority of the fine jewelry on the market today, especially engagement rings and wedding bands. It gets its warm, lustrous hue from the silver and copper alloys with which it's mixed. Within the yellow gold family, there can be a marked difference in shading based on the karat weight-for instance, an 18 karat yellow gold ring will be richer and more brilliant in color than one measuring 10 karats.
Another popular choice for engagement and wedding rings, white gold gets its gleaming silver hue from the addition of alloy metals, including palladium, zinc, copper, tin, and manganese. The highest quality of white gold jewelry is generally 18 karats, consisting of a mixture of pure yellow gold and palladium. At Brilliance, we coat each of our white gold pieces with a protective plating of Rhodium, a gleaming, near-white metal coating that's comparable in appearance to platinum. White gold can be re-dipped in Rhodium periodically to help maintain its original luster.
Often heralded as a romantic metal, rose gold gets its striking coloration from the addition of copper and silver. The larger the ratio of copper, the darker the rose coloration will be. Referred to as 'crown gold,' the most precious rose gold has a 22 karat weight. The more common 18 karat rose gold is comprised of 25% copper and 75% gold.
Gold is generally an expensive metal, due to its rarity and excess of demand. The price of the metal is determined by its fineness, or by the karat purity that marks the ratio of pure gold to other metals. Another factor that comes into play when determining the price of jewelry is the aesthetic design and the method of craftsmanship. As a general rule, a carefully handmade piece will be more expensive than a mass-produced version.
Although gold is resistant to corrosion, it may become dull or dirty with frequent wear. Periodic cleanings of your fine gold jewelry can help to restore its original luster and keep it looking its best. Below are some tips and techniques on safely maintaining your gold jewelry:
Discovered as early as 3,000 BC, gold has served as an ornamental and economic fixture for many centuries. A chemical element, it's a highly prized metal mined from rocks and sediment. From the ancient civilizations of Egypt, Greece, and Rome through the Middle Ages and the modern period of the 1800s, gold has figured prominently in the history and culture of societies spanning the globe. In 1848, the California gold rush brought about a drastic spike in the production and distribution of the metal. Today, gold lends timeless beauty and longevity to a majority of the fine jewelry on the market today. At Brilliance, we're proud to offer a hand-picked assortment of gold rings, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces, available in a rich medley of colors and karat weights.