What to Consider When Buying Gold Jewelry
The allure of gold has fascinated humans since ancient times. Its unique liquid-sunshine color and its reflective qualities captured the attention of B.C. era prospectors from China, Greece, Egypt, India, Turkey, and other rising civilizations. Before there was currency, there was gold. Then, currency was gold, in the form of shaped and stamped metal disks that we know so well—coins. Though we no longer use gold to trade for common goods, gold still has an incredible hold on the global stock market. It’s hard to think of any other product or service which has held a sustained value literally for millennia. This is just one reason why gold is a recommended investment by economists and wealth advisors. Today, one ounce of gold fetches about $1,800. For perspective, gold’s all-time market high was set in 2011, at about $1,900 per ounce. Yet most people who are interested in gold don’t just want a nugget to tuck away in a safe and use as a parachute in a financial crisis. Our ancestors traded gold to enjoy it and make beautiful things out of it. They sought to make their wives and mothers happy with jewelry, and to make domestic life more lovely with gilded objects and décor, just like you do. Buying gold jewelry is a primal affair.
It’s normal to feel stumped when considering how to buy gold jewelry. Like any important purchase, there are so many questions to ask. How do you know you’re walking away with a quality piece? Are there different kinds of gold to consider? Is it possible to get a good deal on gold jewelry? Many of these questions can be put to rest by a trusted, reputable jeweler.
As you can see, the business of gold is one with history. It takes a long time to build relationships with the best gold jewelry designers the world has to offer. Lux Bond & Green got rolling in Connecticut in 1898 via horse and cart when an enterprising Morris A. Green decided to contribute his talents for jewelry, eyeglass frame, and watch repair to the community of Waterbury. Today, as one of the longest continuously operating and singularly owned jewelers in the U.S., Lux Bond & Green has five brick-and-mortar locations. In addition, our extensive collection of jewelry, watches, gifts and designer housewares is showcased and available online. Our focus has remained on delivering customer trust and satisfaction through quality, value, design, honest advice, and exceptional service. Everything we stand for is in those words, and we think you’ll be happy ending your search to buy the perfect piece of gold jewelry with Lux Bond & Green. Here are a few tips and tricks about buying gold jewelry to get you started.
Pure as Gold
As you squint at the tiny stamped “k” on the inner band of a ring, you might be wondering what this hieroglyphic is trying to communicate. “K,” in gold language, means “karat”, which describes the purity of the gold. 24-karat gold is the purest, however, you’ll be hard-pressed to find 24k jewelry, and you may not necessarily want to either because gold at this level of purity is too soft for most jewelry designs. Therefore, gold is alloyed with other metals to create the most common karat values in today’s market: 18k, 14k, and 10k gold. Besides looking for the karat stamp and number, a keen eye can tell what the karat of a piece of jewelry is by observing the color. An 18k gold tone appears most richly saturated, while 14k is slightly rosier and paler. 10k is a more muted gold tone. Most jewelry in the U.S. is made from 14k gold, but 18k is also a popular choice. Of course, since the price of gold is based on pure 24k, higher karat gold jewelry will be more expensive.
Seemingly more cost-effective gold jewelry is sometimes just a look-alike. The real deal is much more valuable and will last longer, however, you should be aware of these alternatives. Don’t be fooled by any jewelry that is stamped with a “GP,” as this indicates a very thin gold plating over another metal. Gold-filled jewelry is similar to gold plating but the gold content is higher. Vermeil is still another word for gold plating, except it indicates that the base metal is a fine grade of silver.
If you’re considering buying a piece of gold jewelry and would like to know more about its purity or metal composition, just ask! The answer you’ll hear at Lux Bond & Green is that we specialize in fine, luxury gold. We work with an Italian Trade Association to secure the highest quality, certified Italian gold jewelry, which is featured in The Lux Gold Collection, and also by top Italian luxury jewelry designers such as Roberto Coin and Marco Bicego. At Lux Bond & Green, we’re so proud of our partnerships in jewelry supply and trade, which allow us to offer the most ethically and responsibly sourced products and designers, at a fair price.
Gold Tonal Decisions
The first thing you’ll probably notice about gold jewelry is that it comes in colors other than gold. Don’t be alarmed! As you now know, gold is alloyed with other metals to create an optimum strength for jewelry. White gold is made by alloying with zinc, copper, and nickel or palladium, while rose gold utilizes a copper alloy. White gold jewelry is often plated with rhodium which helps to give its signature tone, which is similar in appearance to platinum, but is much more affordable. White and rose gold jewelry can be found at 18k, 14k, and 10k, just like yellow gold jewelry.
Everyone has a personal preference for the slight tonal differences of yellow, white, and rose gold jewelry. When buying gold jewelry as a gift, survey what tones the giftee most often wears. If they don’t seem to discriminate, and a jewelry design that you like is offered in multiple gold tones, you can always defer to a Lux Bond & Green associate for knowledgeable assistance and an honest recommendation.
Worth its Weight in Gold
As you hold a piece of gold jewelry in the palm of your hand, such as earrings or a chain, you might be surprised by the weight of such a relatively small object. It’s almost paradoxical that gold is the fifth densest metal in the periodic table, but also one of the softest and most malleable. Gold jewelry is a smart investment, but when gifted as a token of love or appreciation, its value rises even more. In addition, thanks to Lux Bond & Green’s commitment to responsible business practices and our devotion to corporate responsibility, your gold purchase will be worth even more than its weight. With this confidence and your new gold-buying knowledge, we hope that you’ll shop our gold collection to find the perfect gorgeous bangle, gemstone necklace, statement earring, or diamond ring to make your loved one’s life a little bit more…well…golden.