Monthly Archives: December 2015

How to Decide Between Platinum and White Gold for Your Wedding Rings

So you’ve decided that you want a “white” metal for your engagement ring or wedding band, but can’t decide if you should choose platinum or white gold. This is a situation that nearly all our customers who are in the market for an engagement ring or wedding band have found themselves in. To most people, these two metals look nearly identical, but they actually have very different properties. Deciding on the right metal type will have a long-term impact on the durability, appearance, and maintenance required for your ring, so we’ll help you make the right decision in the guide below.

Durability & Composition

To properly understand the difference in durability between white gold and platinum, it’s important to first understand the difference between the metal compositions. Pure gold is 24 karats, but it is very soft and not practical to use in jewelry. Dropping a 24kt ring on the ground or pressing on it firmly is often enough to bend the ring. For this reason, gold jewelry is usually mixed with alloy metals to increase durability. A 14kt ring for example, has more alloy metals than an 18kt ring, and is therefore stronger. In addition to the metal alloys, white gold jewelry is plated in rhodium to create the distinctive white color that its is known for.

Platinum on the other hand, is not mixed with very many alloy metals. Platinum wedding bands and engagement rings are generally between 90-95% platinum. Platinum naturally has a “white” shade, so it does not need to be plated in rhodium to create a different color.

When it comes to durability, the reality is that both of these precious metals can (and likely will be) scratched over time. Despite the fact that both will get scratched, there is actually a difference in how they get scratched.

When white gold takes damage, a very small, often microscopic amount of the metal tends to get left behind on the surface it came into contact with. In contrast, as platinum gets damaged during daily wear, the metal tends to move around as very small scratches are created.

This difference in wearing-down is a very important consideration when choosing the prongs for your engagement ring. Since more metal is lost overtime in white gold, this can make the prongs of your ring thin out over time or even break-off, which increases the risk of your diamond falling out or otherwise getting damaged. White gold prongs require re-tipping much more often than platinum prongs. Due to this, we always recommend for our clients to at least get platinum prongs on their engagement rings, even if the base of the ring is still white gold. This is not to say that your fully white gold engagement ring will fall apart, but it’s important to consider the superior durability of platinum prongs.

Price

Platinum rings are generally more expensive than white gold rings. Platinum is both more rare than gold, and is more difficult for a jeweler to work with due to the properties of the metal. Also, as we explained previously, platinum rings are generally 90-95% pure platinum, while white gold rings contain more alloy metals. This means that you get a heavier ring with a very high percentage of platinum, increasing the value of the ring.

Appearance & Maintenance

Both platinum and white gold change their appearance over time. White gold is coated in a layer of rhodium, which will slowly wear away. This will lead to a yellowing of the product, but it will return to its original appearance after you get it rhodium plated again. In general, we have found that most clients start noticing this change within a year and get their ring rhodium plated again.

Platinum tends to move slightly when it takes damage, and these very small grooves and scratches in the ring will lead to a slightly duller finish over time. Many people actually prefer this faded appearance because it gives the ring a vintage look. Many other people, however, prefer the original shine and brighter finish of their platinum rings. A jeweler can re-polish your platinum ring back to its original finish, and most of our clients get this done roughly once a year.

Overall, the decision of which metal to choose for your wedding rings is a personal decision. They both do require a minimal degree of maintenance, but between re-tipping prongs and rhodium plating, most of our clients find that white gold requires more upkeep. Platinum rings, however, tend to be more expensive at the offset, even though they may require less maintenance during the lifetime of the ring. If you are concerned about having the most secure setting for your diamond, I would always recommend purchasing a platinum engagement ring or platinum prongs on a white gold engagement ring. However, if you pay careful attention to your ring, avoid damage, and don’t mind visiting the jeweler for regular maintenance on your ring, white gold might be the superior option for you. White gold rings also tend to be more cost-effective and come in many more unique designs than platinum, because the metal tends to be easier to work with for a jeweler. We hope this guide helps you on your journey to find the perfect wedding band or engagement ring!

Do s And Don ts Of Wearing Jewelry To A Friend s Wedding

Whether you agree or not, but you will any day enjoy your bestie’s wedding more than your own wedding. Therefore, don’t you think you need to look amazing on this day? You never know, you might bump into a guy who might become your future “prince charming” (of course, if you are single and ready to mingle). To bedazzle everyone at your friend’s wedding, all you need to do is pamper yourself in a professional spa, pick a designer Indian attire, choose some dazzling Indian jewelry and of course, choose the ethnic bag that goes with it. You may confidently choose all the above-mentioned stuff to doll up, but in the case of jewelry, you need to be very careful.

Jewelry are the stuff that makes your attire look even better, so you need to pick the right trinkets that’ll not just make your outfit look stunning, but will also make you pretty. Here are some do’s and don’ts that will help you accessorize your outfit:

Do’s of wearing jewelry to a friend’s wedding:

  • The first and foremost thing that you have to do is choose ornaments according to your outfit. While purchasing an ornament, you must always make sure that they compliment the attire really well; or else, it will turn into a disaster. For example, with ethnic attire purchase a jadau or polki set, and with western wear purchase a trendy statement necklace or earrings that would increase your attire’s charm.
  • If you want to look modern and chic, purchase latest designer ornaments to look marvelous. For instance, Victorian styled jewelry are trending, so what you can do is purchase a Victorian statement necklace or earrings, that would do justice to your outfit.
  • Play with colored ornaments as much as possible, especially if your outfit has a single tone or color. For instance, if you are donning a fully black outfit, then try to accessorize it with colorful statement pieces, such as statement necklace that has hot pink colored beads/stones.

Don’ts of wearing jewelry to a friend’s wedding:

  • If you are planning to purchase trinkets according to the color of your outfit, hold on! That’s not at all a good idea. The ‘matchy-matchy’ concept has lost its existence long back. Now, it’s time to mix and match your clothes with accessories.
  • Don’t over accessorize your outfit, otherwise you are going to look very cheap. While wearing ornaments keep the “less is more” concept in your mind.
  • Don’t put on too many statement pieces, because that’s not going you look ultra-attractive. Just remember one thing, statement necklaces or earrings are worn to create a “statement” and to drags everyone’s attention onto that particular dazzling piece of jewelry. But, if you put on too many statement pieces, then the people won’t be able to focus on any one piece; and on top of that, the entire look will be spoilt as it will look over accessorized.

These were the do’s and don’ts of wearing jewelry to a friend’s wedding or any other occasion. From now onward, follow the above given tips and accordingly accessorize your attire.

Should I Choose Modern or Vintage Engagement Rings

Choosing a ring to propose marriage with can be a difficult thing to do, but it is also the chance to deliver a really pleasant surprise to your partner and express your feelings through a thoughtful and unique choice of jewellery. There are two common options today, and those are modern engagement rings and vintage rings, both of which can be found from jewellers around the country.

Choosing between these two options can be tricky however, as each one has their advantages and disadvantages. Here are some of the things that you should consider if you are deliberating between which one is the right choice for your future fiancée.

Firstly, one of the main advantages of vintage options such as art deco engagement rings or Edwardian rings is that they are truly unique, bearing designs that you will not often find with modern rings. Fashioned in the distinct style of the time that they were made, you are very unlikely to find something similar from modern designers today.

This can be contrasted with modern rings, which can be a good choice for very different reasons. One of these is that modern rings are often created in a very classic yet contemporary style, and indeed many of the people do like a platinum or gold band with a gorgeous diamond in the centre.

For this reason, your choice between the two might be a stylistic one – do you go for something that is unusual and original in design or do you go for the sleek and elegant engagement ring style that is popular at the moment with a large demographic across the country and indeed the world?

The next point to consider is originality and uniqueness, as this is often a selling point when it comes to vintage options such as Victorian or art deco engagement rings. The reason for this is that these items are certainly not mass produced, and often you will be hard pressed to find something just like it.

This can be great for those who are looking for something truly special, as they are very unlikely to find something the same elsewhere. This can certainly add a feeling of ‘specialness’ to your marriage proposal, which is not true of modern styles of ring.

Some people are not so concerned with this one-of-a-kind uniqueness, however, instead choosing something that is perhaps more similar to many other options on the market – and mass produced – but is simply still more stylish and to their tastes than the vintage option.

Another point to bear in mind is cost, and this is no small element of the process of buying a ring. Often, many mass produced modern rings will be at a lower price tag than when buying some really rare and exquisite vintage rings. This can have a huge impact on how much of your pay check that you actually spend.

With that said, this is not always true, and you can find many gorgeous vintage options available for excellent prices form retail specialists in this particular type of jewellery. It is wise to do your research, however, on the value of the piece that you want to buy in order to ensure that you do not lose out financially.

These are just a few of the main reasons why you might want to invest in vintage options such as Victorian or art deco engagement rings or instead choose a more contemporary option. Both of these choices have their own advantages and disadvantages, which should be carefully weighed up and thought out.

With that said, it is fair to summarise that vintage rings are often more unusual and unique, whereas contemporary options bear a modern classic feel that is certainly the wedding ring standard in today’s society.

3 Key Features of Art Deco Jewellery

There are many different types of beautiful vintage jewellery available on the market today, and the surge in popularity of these items has meant that there is more choice than ever before. As well as specialist offline jewellers, online stores are also now selling these items, and many people like to try and get a bargain online.

With that said, there are certain risks to buying online, and it is wise to exercise precaution when doing so. Regardless, art deco jewellery is available in abundance and there are many stunning pieces for you to enjoy; here are three key features of this kind of jewellery that you need to know about.

Firstly, one aspect of art deco jewellery is the use of colour, which differentiates it from its predecessors that included Edwardian jewellery. Art deco sprung up post First World War in Europe, with the 1920s and the 1930s being key decades of popularity for this style.

The colours used for all kinds of jewellery – from art deco engagement rings to necklaces – include bold and bright shades which were not present in the muted styles that came precedent to this. Precious stones were used, and these were in a variety of colours, including jade, carnelian, emerald, ruby, sapphire and coral.

Black and whites were also used to contrast against colours, and these included the widespread use of onyx and diamonds. Certain colours trends did continue from Edwardian jewellery however, and these include the used of white metals such as platinum and white gold. These help contribute to this beautiful, contrasting effect that the style is famous for.

The next aspect of art deco engagement rings, necklace and bracelets is that these items often featured very distinctive, geometric shapes. These could be very ostentatious in style and again very bold, making a real statement for those who wore them. Examples of popular pieces included bulky rings, statement necklaces and long pendant earrings.

It should also be noted that strings of pearls were popular during this period too. These fit in with the ostentatious, bold look of the jewellery, and also the geometric one. Circles and ovals feature heavily in this style of jewellery, as did rectangles, squares and diamond shapes. Each of these shapes appeared on all different items of stunning jewellery.

In addition to having these geometric shapes, often several items of jewellery were worn together to make a bold statement. This was especially true with bracelets, which were often stacked, but any item of jewellery could be worn with several others of a similar style – as can be seen in images from the era of women draped in plenty of bold art deco jewellery.

The third and final feature of this kind of jewellery is that natural themes and motifs were often present, including the inclusion of birds, animals, flowers and leaves. These added another unusual feature to previously traditional jewellery, and could serve as a interesting talking point for the wearer and her friends.

It should be noted that many of these natural world motifs had been influenced by the preceding art nouveau movement, but simply made the designs bolder, and included a great deal more originality, taking ideas and inspiration from cultures around the globe. An example of this is the prevalence of Egyptian designs, such as pyramids and scarab beetles.

From art deco engagement rings to necklaces and bracelets, there is a huge number of these exciting items on the market today, making it easier than ever to enjoy these stunning artefacts of history. When you shop around however, just be sure to make sure that you seek out a reputable jeweller who can fully inform you and assure you about the authenticity of the piece you plan on purchasing.

Berganza is a family-run jewellery business specialising in the finest quality antique jewellery, and the company prides itself on having one of the most extensive collections of antique rings in the world. The team of specialists at Berganza combines years of experience with practical expertise and a passion for antique jewellery. In addition to rings, Berganza sells necklaces, brooches, bracelets, cufflinks and many more precious and rare items, shipping to customers worldwide. Based in London in the United Kingdom, Berganza is a member of the Association of International Antiquities Dealers and the National Association of Goldsmiths