Different types of Gold


Gold Filled

Gold filled jewellery wire KDS4444, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Gold Filled 

Gold-filled jewellery is a slice of base metal, such as bronze, sandwiched between two layers of solid gold (or a rod of base metal wrapped in a layer of gold). Sometimes the core can be silver but our supplier has never come across this. The benefit of gold-filled is that it can be formed into jewellery after it was created, unlike gold vermeil or gold plated (below) which must be plated after forming the jewellery items. The benefit is that the gold layer is unlikely to wear away unless the piece is damaged, so they are a great affordable alternative to solid gold.

We now offer a selection of 14kt gold-filled jewellery!

Gold Vermeil also known as Gold Plated Solid Silver

Gold vermeil is an inexpensive alternative to solid gold. We offer a range of gold vermeil findings and settings for memorial and breastmilk jewellery.  It is solid silver that is plated with gold.

To be advertised as “gold vermeil” in the USA, a piece must have at least a 2.5micron thickness of gold but this is not a legal requirement in the UK (gold-plated silver can have at most 2 microns) so you must call these findings from us gold plated solid silver.

The benefit of gold vermeil is that it’s more affordable than solid gold, and cast pieces such as crown point settings can be plated after production, which isn’t possible for gold-filled items. They’re also 100% precious metal, which some prefer to gold-filled (which contains base metal). 

Unfortunately the gold will wear away on vermeil eventually, the time depends on the use and wear of the item, and the client will need to find somewhere local where they can have it re-plated occasionally.

Solid Gold

Probably the world’s most common solid gold types of Gold Jewellery Settings is 9 carat, 9ct or 9k and is called 375 gold. It’s compromised of 37.5% pure gold, the other 62.5% is usually a mixture of other precious metals and base metals such as copper and silver.

14kt gold which is is 585 purity The copper is added to gold to strengthen it (gold is quite a soft metal)., which is 58.5% pure gold and 41.5% other metals.

18kt gold is 750 (75% pure) and 24ct gold is 99.9% or 100% pure gold. The drawbacks include ethical concerns about the way the gold was gathered (we always use recycled gold, wherever possible), this Fairtrade Article explains some of the problems of mining gold.

The Difference Between Rose, White and Yellow Gold

All gold is yellow. There is no such thing as red, pink or rose gold. There are however gold alloys which appear rose, red or pink, so when we refer to coloured gold we mean coloured gold alloys. The colour of gold alloy varies with the percentage of other metals used in the alloys.

Gold is yellow and copper is red, the only two coloured pure metals. All other metals are white or grey in colour. The addition of copper considerably heightens the yellow colour of gold, the alloy passing through different grades of yellow to red-yellow, and finally to the rich red of copper, as the proportion of copper is increased. But if silver and a small amount of zinc is added to rich red copper and gold alloy then the alloy adopts the characteristic colour known as ‘rose gold’.
Birmingham Assay Office


 GOLD differences



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