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A Guide to Precious Metals

With so many options available and decisions to make especially when trying to organise a wedding, choosing a special piece of jewellery can often be more than a little daunting. Our bespoke manager, Susie Lee explains the different metal options when considering an Alex Monroe Fine Jewellery purchase.

Gold is our most popular metal for engagement rings and wedding bands. With it’s extraordinary heritage and unique qualities it’s easy to see why. In it’s natural form it is found with a rich yellow colour, which happily resists rust, tarnishing and corrosion. Prized for its ability to be strong and simultaneously the most malleable of all the precious metals. It’s this duality that allows us to create our highly detailed and intricate designs.

Pure 24ct gold is too soft for everyday wear, but when alloyed with other metals like copper and zinc its strength and durability can me maximized. 18ct gold is the ideal balance of purity and strength, this has 75% pure gold and 25% other alloys. Our Goldcrest collection has been carefully crafted in solid 18ct gold, so you can confidently wear these pieces everyday.

18ct gold comes in a variety of colours. Yellow, rose and white being the most commonly used. No matter what colour you choose, the percentage of gold used is always the same, it’s just the type of alloys that vary to give each unique colour. White coloured alloys are mixed with pure gold to create the soft pale grey colour you see in 18ct white gold. Natural white gold still retains its signature warmth, which stems from its yellow origins. At Alex Monroe we especially love the rich warmth of natural white gold and do not use rhodium plating to enhance the whiteness. If a piece of white gold jewellery is rhodium plated then the process will require constant up keep and re-plating. As a rule, we prefer to keep things natural!

The striking pink hue of rose gold is created using a copper alloy. Growing ever more popular, this special colour looks lovely with both ice white diamonds and coloured gemstones. It can also be really fun to mix the colours of gold you use. Why not consider a yellow gold band with white gold flowers? Or perhaps a rose gold engagement ring paired with a white gold wedding band? There are so many playful options to explore!

Platinum is another  popular metal for engagement rings and wedding bands. It has a naturally bright white colour that is traditionally paired with sparkly diamonds. Platinum is a particularly strong metal (even more so than gold) and is used to create the finest settings and most delicate rings. The density of platinum provides the most secure setting for precious gemstones. Platinum is an incredibly pure metal. It is 95% pure platinum with 5% iridium, palladium and ruthenium. This purity makes it hypoallergenic and ideal for anyone with sensitive skin.

Gold and platinum are both excellent, strong and durable choices for engagement rings and wedding bands. Naturally over time they will develop a patina of wear. We consider this to be a desirable attribute! Each ring will develop it’s own special patina that is unique to your life. To keep your precious jewellery looking it’s best, you can clean it very easily at home. Simply soak in warm soapy water, then gently brush with a soft-bristled toothbrush, Remember to put the plug in the sink beforehand!!

If you need a little direction in picking the right engagement ring, Susie's guide to, can be found here.

If you would like to book yourself in for a free consultation with Susie, our bespoke manager,
please don't hesitate to contact us via:

bespoke@alexmonroe.com
or call our boutique on 0207 378 6061

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