Which kind of gold? What fineness of silver? What about copper? Then there's polished vs. antiqued--plus issues of allergies and metal sensitivities. Choosing the right metal for your design involves balancing a number of factors, both artistic and financial.
Put on your thinking cap--it's time for some stylin' decision-making!
|What to Consider
Jewelry designers have a number of issues to keep in mind when choosing which metal to use in their work--if, indeed, they choose to use any metal at all.
If you're creating for commission or "on spec," metal sensitivities and other allergy issues need to be part of your conversation with the customer. The most common metal sensitivity is nickel, which tends to show up in a range of metal alloys as it can be relatively inexpensive. A helpful guideline for determining nickel content is to seek "nickel-free" or "European Union Nickel Directive Compliant" components.
Alternate Options for Metal Sensitive CustomersOf course, there is a market for metal-free jewelry, too. No-metal designs are ideal for customers with intense metal sensitivities or workers in certain industries--such as MRI technicians--who cannot wear metal on the job. (If you sell your work near a hospital or medical center, consider offering some MRI-safe styles!)
Sometimes, you're designing for a particular look and metal choices are a rich part of your vision. Some jewelry makers opt out of metals entirely by using gemstone toggles or bone clasps while others design by hue and shade, choosing color-matched niobium earwires, eyepins, jumprings and wire for a consistent look throughout a design.
We have a number of clasp and finding styles which are available in a range of metals, finishes and surface treatments (polished vs. antiqued). In fact, we regularly go through our best-selling clasp styles and engineer alternative versions to offer more design options with the styles you've shown us you like best.
You'll often see the same style of clasp or finding in sterling silver, gold and silver finish, antiqued brass, gunmetal and other variations. See the options for slide lock clasps, filigree box clasps, toggle clasps, hook earwires and leverback earwires for an example of your breadth of choice.
Affordable with Style
How did you like this resource? Your feedback helps us provide resources that matter to you most.