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Pearls – The June Birthstone! Choosing Between Akoya & Freshwater Pearls!
July 19 , 2016 | Written by: pearls

The pearl is the birthstone for all those born in June and it stands for purity, chastity and modesty. It also stands for loyalty and faithfulness. Its milky white iridescence is what gives pearl its timeless magnificence.

Whether you have a loved one with a birthday in July or you are celebrating your birthday this month, there are so many ways to gift a piece of jewelry with pearls. There’s no limit to what you can choose – cute pearl earrings, necklaces, or bracelets.

Classic Jewelry Collection

Going beyond its benefits as a birthstone, pearl is a part of the classic jewelry collection. They can brighten up special occasions better than almost anything else. Pearl jewelry, including earrings, necklaces, and bracelets, can add a touch of class to almost any outfit.

What Makes Pearl So Special?

It is interesting that pearl is not something that can be called a gemstone. It takes a mollusk at least 5 years to create a full sized pearl. It is very rare to find natural pearls created by sand grains, and they are quite expensive too. On the other hand, man-made alternatives are available which can be designed in a variety of shapes. These cultured pearls are affordable but they are ‘natural’ too.

Akoya vs. Freshwater Pearls

Although pearls are known for their glossy and creamy white shade, they are available in a variety of natural colors and hues. The Akoya pearls are widely cherished for their rich blue colors. On the other hand, freshwater pearls are available in a variety of colors and shapes.

Akoya Pearls

When you think of the traditional white pearls, you are thinking of the Akoya pearls. They offer the highest gleam and shine among all cultured pearls.

They can be as small as 5mm or as large as 11mm. The Akoya pearl will be either creamy or white and will have a hint of cream, rose or ivory. In fact, you can also find treated Akoya pearls with black body.

Akoya oysters are found and cultivated in Japan in shallow and calm seas. Despite its white and cream dominance, the colors can also be silver pink and pink in some cases. These pearls are most often near-perfect round, which makes them the perfect pearls used in some of the finest pearl jewelry in the world.

The Akoya pearl is considered as pure symbol of beauty and grace. Akoya cultured pearls are seen as the classic pearls in earrings and pearl strands.

These are high quality pearls and they are often set with clasps and posts in gold. They have fewer blemishes, and deeper and elegant luster. Some of the most sought-after Akoya pearl jewelry pieces include necklaces, pendants, stud earrings, bracelets, strands, and fashionable earrings.

Freshwater Pearls

Mostly produced in China, freshwater pearls are sourced from freshwater mussels. They are available in more number of colors – primarily pastel shades. You can find these pearls in white, pink, black, plum, tangerine, peach, purple, and lavender. Their size can range from just 2mm to as large as 16mm.

Freshwater pearls are the most common types of pearls used in jewelry and they are more affordable. They are sourced from mussels that grow in smaller rivers and lakes. A good thing about these pearls is that they will not wear away when worn regularly, especially due to the effects of perfume and makeup.

Freshwater pearls are available in larger variety of shapes. You can find them in almost any shape, starting from small rounds to larger baroque crosses. This is especially because there’s much more control over the pearls shape from the very beginning.

When looking for the perfect freshwater pearl, look for a perfect round shape and a near perfect metallic sheen that gives a good reflection. All this is a sign of higher quality, expensive pearl.

Conclusion

Overall, the Akoya pearls usually look similar to their freshwater counterparts. But you can readily notice the difference when you compare them alongside. Usually, the traditional Japanese pearls are smoother, shinier, rounder and larger than Freshwater pearls.

Trend Watch: Stacking Rings! Great Way To Mix Textures And Metal Colors
July 14 , 2016 | Written by: stacking ring

The classic wedding ring was elegant, simple and cute. It was just a band of gold. You shouldn’t be surprised to see modern wedding rings which can be as flashy and colored as engagement rings. There is a growing tradition for layering, and stacking rings are the best examples.

The Growing Layering Trend

Stacking rings are quite hot right now, with fashion ramps, celebrities, and fashion sites flaunting more and more stacks of bands.

Layering was a trend mostly seen with clothes. It is now a great way to mix textures and colors in jewelry.

One of the best ways to get on top of the trend is to maintain cohesive and clean looks. In order to get the delicate looks, wear thin and graceful rings against thick ones.

In fact, you may do with just a single ring most of the time. If you can’t get enough with just one, try a midi ring on one finger and try some delicate styles on another finger.

The Magic of Mixed Metals

You can wear all the three colors of gold with your stacking rings. Create even more overall interest to the look by stacking gold colors on one finger and some other metal like silver on another finger. You could also create

Depending on your likes, they can range from simple, slender and subtle stacking rings to something studded with gemstones. If you don’t have the budget for diamonds, try something more affordable yet equally beautiful like moissanites.

With some sparkle, the stacks can always get something more added to their grace. If mixing all the yellow, rose and white gold doesn’t seem to be adding more variety, the addition of the right gemstones can certainly pep up your stylish ring.

The trend has also caught up with newlyweds. Many stack different bands on their ring finger, creating a look with a stronger and bigger statement compared to the traditional engagement and band concept. Interestingly, the trend seems to be something that will be here for some time.

Stacked rings are expected to stay here and will become even more popular. Don’t be surprised if you see them taking over ring jackets. Increasing number of ladies love wearing their wedding rings all alone. The engagement ring goes on the right hand. When you choose stacking rings, you will find them to be much more versatile. They can work all alone, unlike ring jackets.

Mixing It Up

Stacked rings are so popular because they allow people to mix things up in many ways. You can mix and match rings to create any type of look you may desire.

You can not experiment with the different gold colors but also mix up gold and silver, gemstones and diamonds. And this helps in expanding your wardrobe options like anything. You can try different types of outfits with these rings.

Something That’s Perfect for You

When it comes to stackable rings, there are only so many spots to fill. You should choose a few statement bands that can be mixed up to turn a simple stack into something that is not boring.

A good way to find what is best is to try a few of rings in your collection by moving them around on your fingers. You can finalize a combination that looks perfect on your hands. Else you could play with different styles, shapes, metals and gemstone colors at the jewellery designers. Once you have created a few combinations, you may want to choose other rings that can help complete the look. Although this is not necessary because stacked rings can always go all alone.

Refurbish Old Jewelry: Maintenance Makes It Look New Again
July 7 , 2016 | Written by: Jewellery

Your jewelry can go through so much of abuse and stress that it’s often amazing that the old pieces don’t get fully damaged. Even if the wear and tear and the effects of time don’t do much to your old jewelry, the changing fashion trends can leave them obsolete.

If you have any such old jewelry pieces, have you ever thought of refurbishing them?

Benefits of Refurbishing

There are many reasons refurbishing your old jewelry can be a great choice.

– Your old piece of jewelry including rings can be refurbished to new pieces.

– The gems can be remounted into a fresher design.

– Using the same old metal and gems can help in saving money.

It is also a unique feeling when you wear your old jewelry pieces in new looks. When you refurbish your jewelry once every few years, it will also help maintain it and extend its life. It is also a cost effective way to enhance the pieces.

Jewelry refurbishing involves restoring the piece so that it becomes alive again. In some cases your jewelry designer may recommend creating a new piece of jewelry out of the old one. For example, the earrings may be turned from wire backs to posts or screw backs.

Reusing Old Gold

If you are thinking of reusing the gold from your old jewelry, you should know about the limitations.

– Single Casting Uses a Lot of Gold – Since only one piece of jewelry is cast, the process will require more gold. It will also take more time. This can increase the costs. This is because when the new jewelry is cast, the liquid gold will have to pass through a passage known as sprue. The gold over this passage solidifies. So you the gold will not only be used for the new cast jewelry but also for the sprue.

Although the sprue is given to you, it is not of any use. It is recommended to choose a jewelry designer who has regular re-casting work. It will help you save on the ‘sprue’ gold.

– Recycling the Alloys – There is no problem when recycling old jewelry made of pure gold. But most of the gold jewelry is made of 14k or 10k gold. Both these golds have 42% to 58% alloys. Using gold again and again is easy, but it is the alloys that create a problem.

The alloys, more so the ones found in white gold, can turn unstable. This can cause your new jewelry to show pit marks or suffer from discoloration. The alloys can also cause splits when the jewelry is working on the metal.

Giving a New Lease of Life to Your Old Jewelry

This is why it will be best to choose an experienced jewelry designer who knows the intricacies. They can help you make the right choice between refurbishing your old piece of jewelry and making something entirely new from the metal and the stones while minimizing losses and helping you save money.

If you are thinking of doing something with your old piece of jewelry. You can have it redesigned or refurbished into a beautiful piece of new heirloom.

If you have acquired a fine piece of old jewelry as an heirloom and you want to restore it, make sure to consider the benefits. You know the piece has lasted so long. If you make the right choice, you can give it a new lease of life that can make it last another lifetime – something you can hand down to the next generation without losing the original metal and stones.

The Growing Trend of Engagement Rings for Men
July 1 , 2016 | Written by: Silver ring

Engagement rings have traditionally been worn by women. But there’s a new trend where even men can have them. Women are no longer as shy in proposing, and then we also have the beautiful relationship between male couples.

Many men also love to look engaged and loved the same way as women do.

Men’s engagement rings are increasingly becoming popular. More men now think that the traditional rings should no longer be reserved for just one gender. After all, getting engaged is a big thing in life and everyone should celebrate it.

Design Considerations

There are some fundamental differences between the design of men’s and women’s engagement rings. It is well understood that a man’s ring doesn’t have to be as fancy though.

Typically, the primary stone in men’s engagement rings are not as large. The best way to describe the current trend in these rings is that they are ‘subtle.’

But diamonds continue to be the most sought after stone, even for men’s rings. But there’s no guarantee as to what color of diamonds they can be. So don’t be surprised to come across black diamonds, as they are gaining more and more popularity.

Finish

There are different types of metal finishes to choose from for a man’s engagement rings. But the polished metal is not the No.1 choice. It is still the top choice for women’s rings.

There is a significant amount of craze for the hammered or brushed finish. Many also prefer embossed features, cut-out metalwork and engravings. The best thing about this trend is that it has introduced fresh, more creative and thrilling elements in design in the jewelry industry.

Metals

‘Durability’ is one word that generally defines men’s engagement ring. More men prefer rings made in indestructible metals, such as titanium and tungsten carbide.

What makes these metals unique is that they may be long-lasting, they are not meant to be cut or resized. But that is probably not on top of your mind with your engagement ring. Besides, there’s the practical benefit to them. You can wear them to work every day and will never have to worry about getting them damaged.

Even with these peculiar differences, there are some trends which are common. Although more durable metals are more popular, many prefer men’s engagement rings with mixed metals. Many even like to have colored metals as one of the mixed metals.

There will usually be a thick band in a single metal, which is mixed with one or even more thinner bands that contrast the main metal. These combinations are seen as the counterparts to the colored gemstones for women’s rings.

Elaborate Designs

Most of the men’s engagement rings are known for their subtleness and simplicity, but that is no reason for you not to choose an elaborate design. Many are trying to be as creative as they can be.

These fancier designs typically feature the large center gemstone, which can sometimes be dual-toned. In some cases, there may be multiple stones.

The diamond band is another fancier alternative. In this case the diamonds are set on the top of the band or they could cover the entire band. But it’s not something many men would be able to wear. You will have to consider what you could wear to work every day.

Men’s diamond bands usually have the stones which are preferred to not to be elevated. This reduces the risks of any damages.

As men start to wear and flaunt their engagement rings, the trend has given rise to new styles and has inspired innovation like never seen before. If you are planning something, keep these points in mind to make the right choice.