Posts Tagged ‘Platinum Jewelry’

What’s “As Good As Gold”?

Thursday, March 24th, 2011

as good as gold

“As good as gold”, what’s better? Since childhood we’ve known that “as good as gold” indicated the highest level. But were we naïve? When we got older and wanted to show the highest level of financial responsibility, we didn’t want to settle for a mere “gold card”.  By then we learned there was something even better! There was something much more rare, something that showed a purity in our credit rating and showed our persistence and endurance as shoppers and diligent bill payers. We aspired, of course, to a “platinum card”.

This analogy isn’t entirely metaphoric, however, and actually becomes quite relevant as you search for the perfect engagement ring or wedding bands. Here’s why.

L – Platinum and diamond engagement ring by Hearts on Fire R – Platinum and diamond engagement ring and wedding band by Michael M.

Every metal has characteristics that make it “right” for usage in particular items. Titanium for eye-glasses, because it’s lightweight; aluminum for patio furniture, because it can brave the elements but be light enough to move around the pool; and surgical steel for operations, because it’s hypoallergenic. When it comes to jewelry, however, we primarily look to what’s known as “noble metals” (metals that are rare and resistant to corrosion) as being most suitable. Even within this “noble” category however, there are characteristics that make metals just “right”. Let’s take two of the most frequently used metals for engagement rings and wedding bands – platinum and gold. Both are noble, rare and precious, however when used for engagement rings and wedding bands, one metal shows superiority. The superiority has to do with what you need those pieces of jewelry to do.

Men’s platinum wedding band by Gelin Abaci

Men’s platinum wedding band by Gelin Abaci

Engagement rings and wedding bands are exchanged to signify the highest level of relationship – marriage. Therefore, they should be made from something that’s precious, rare and pure. In the hierarchy of metals platinum is more precious and thirty times more rare than gold. Platinum jewelry is usually made of 90-95% pure platinum, while gold at 18K is 75% pure gold and 14K is only 58.5% pure gold. Therefore, from a significance standpoint this makes platinum the more appropriate choice.

Further, engagement rings and wedding bands are given with the expectation that they will be worn every day for life. Therefore, they need to be made from something that will never fade or tarnish, something durable enough to stand up to a lifetime of daily wear, something that is hypoallergenic, and in most cases, something that can hold a precious diamonds or gemstones securely for life.  Again, platinum proves to be most appropriate. Platinum is naturally white and will remain white over time, unlike white gold which is originally yellow but mixed with other metals, then plated over the top to look white. Over time, the white plating on gold will wear, revealing a “less white” color underneath. Platinum will not only stand up better to daily wear but gems held in a platinum setting are more secure because it is virtually indestructible. Finally, because platinum is usually 90-95% pure it will always be hypoallergenic.

Now that we’ve looked at the differences isn’t it time we updated our language to reflect our new knowledge? Let’s replace that old saying with something better. “As good as gold” should really be “perfectly platinum”.

Have you begun your engagement ring search? Did this blog post change your thinking on gold vs. platinum? Tell us your story in the comments section below.

Lies My Jeweler Told Me

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

shady jewelery business

By early adulthood everyone should realize the realities of retail. According to Wikipedia: “Retail consists of the sale of goods or merchandise from a fixed location,…for direct consumption by the purchaser.” Retail stores are “for-profit” businesses that purchase products at one price, then, sell them to the consumer at a higher price that yields them a profit. This involves adding a markup amount (or percentage) to the retailer’s cost.”  By the nature of retail, each store carries an inventory of products that is in their best interest to sell to consumers in order to make profit and remain in business. This became resoundingly clear to me on a recent shopping trip when I attempted to buy jewelry as a gift for my sister.

Left – Simon G: Platinum and diamond band by Simon G. Jewelry, $1,870, Right – Whiteflash: Platinum and diamond heart pendant by Whiteflash.com, $710

When marking a special occasion with jewelry, it’s only natural to want to buy “the best”. Nobody approaches this quest wishing to buy “what’s adequate”. I wanted a quality piece to reflect the importance of our relationship, something that could be worn for a lifetime and something precious that provided long-term value.  I did homework on sites like PreciousPlatinum.com and decided on platinum and diamond stud earrings. It was only when I went to my local jewelry store to purchase them that I learned when shopping for platinum there are many myths and misconceptions.

First, I found that if the jewelry store didn’t carry platinum in his inventory he was very anxious that I didn’t go elsewhere to get it. The sales associate made a number of claims to justify platinum’s absence, such as, “Platinum is too expensive” and “it’s too soft”.  Having done research, I was able to reply that I had already seen platinum pieces from approximately $1,000. I asked the sales associate why most of the world’s most important gems were set into platinum. Gems like that wouldn’t be put into soft settings that didn’t hold them securely forever. The associate told me that because white gold was plated with rhodium that the diamond would sparkle just the same as platinum. Again, I knew that white gold was in fact, yellow gold, made to look white my mixing the natural yellow metal with whiter ones to disguise the color. It is then plated with rhodium in order to make it look whiter. So he was partially right, except for the fact that he wasn’t telling me that over time and regular wear, the rhodium would wear off, exposing the less white color underneath. I told him that I knew that platinum was a naturally white metal that didn’t need to be plated – ever- in order to enhance its whiteness. It was then that the associate tried to reason with me. He asked, “Why get platinum when you can get the same look with gold?” My answer was simple and direct. “Because I want this gift to be worn and cherished for a lifetime, something she can wear everyday and only the best is good enough.” The question really is, why wouldn’t I want platinum?

Stuller: Platinum and diamond stud earrings by Stuller, $810

Stuller: Platinum and diamond stud earrings by Stuller, $810

Have you been given any words of warning about dealing with jewelers? If so, share some in the comment section below.

2011 Engagement Ring Trends

Saturday, February 5th, 2011
2011 engagement ring trends

Which engagement rings will be hot in 2011?

In pushing the fashion envelope forward, clothing designers sometimes help us look back and remember fun times and gentler eras.  Such is the case with this season fashion runways, which provided us with a retro revisiting of the classic elegance of the 50’s and early 60’s as well as the swinging spirited side of the late 60’s and 70’s.  And while fashion designers have set the directional frame, bridal jewelry designers are also taking notice, and creating fresh interpretations of these trends. Here’s a look at the top 3 engagement ring trends for this coming year:

1- Inspired by the hit television show Mad Men, classic dressing and classic engagement ring styles are back! Remember the timelessness of celebrities like Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly and Elizabeth Taylor. Think the sophisticated elegance of a polished platinum setting with a solitaire diamond, or a vintage-inspired style with filigree.

Investing in classic styles is not only a wise choice from a wear-ability standpoint, since they will never go out of fashion, but the investment in a platinum engagement ring means that the ring you purchase today will last for a lifetime and ready to hand down to future generations.

engagement rings 2011

L – Platinum engagement ring from Kirk Kara showcasing the floral motif R – Platinum engagement ring from CliQ Jewelry showcasing a classic diamond solitaire

2- Additionally, we’re seeing more colorful fabrics with exaggerated movement and ruffle detailing. This will translate into engagement ring designs by incorporating colored gemstones such as citrine, sapphire, and ruby, set into platinum. Since platinum is a naturally white metal, it will maximize the brilliance of all colored gemstones.

3- This year we’ll also see engagement rings with a variety of floral motifs inspired by the 70’s. Whether this design surrounds the center diamond, or it’s part of the band, much of this intricate detailing can only be accomplished in platinum.

When it comes to today’s consumer, value is one of the most motivating factors in deciding to purchase fine jewelry according to a recent study by W magazine. Today’s platinum jewelry designers are providing the versatility of design in pieces that are classic, colorful, and design oriented to work with any era, while platinum itself is providing the long term value that allows you to enjoy your favored pieces daily and still hand them down to future generations.

engagement rings 2011 styling

L – Platinum engagement ring from Art Carved showcasing a vintage inspired design R – Platinum and blue sapphire engagement ring from Beladora.com

What are your thoughts on 2011′s hot engagement ring styles? Tell us what you like (and don’t like) in the comments section below.

What’s Fair is Fair: Anniversary Gifts For Men

Monday, January 31st, 2011

man with gift

We’ve all seen the story played out on numerous television sitcoms: Poor guy finds out that today is actually his wedding anniversary. Guy realizes that it’s only a few hours before he’s supposed to meet his wife at a dinner she’s planned for them at a romantic restaurant.  Guy panics trying to find the most amazing gift for her while covering up the fact that he didn’t remember the date. It’s a familiar story.

Well let’s cut guys some slack, Guy’s aren’t the only people to forget dates! And when it comes down to it you’ve already purchased her the most amazing gift – her platinum and diamond engagement ring- a gift that probably cost about two months salary. So when is it YOUR turn?

The objective of an anniversary is to commemorate the history of a couple and to celebrate the future that they both look forward to together. Therefore, anniversaries are the perfect opportunity for the giving of mutual gifts that are precious, rare and symbolize both past and future.

Platinum anniversary gifts for men

On the left: Stuller Platinum Cufflinks for Men. One the right: Platinum Tie Accent From CliQ Jewelry

These days, one of the most popular trends in giving is to buy gifts that will truly be used and enjoyed, things that may be worn daily. For many men who spend a good deal of time in the office, items such as platinum cuff links or tie accents, platinum neck chains or a platinum bracelet make a perfect gift that ideally fits the bill for anniversary giving.

The reason that platinum jewelry is perfect is that platinum is one of the most durable, precious and rare of all jewelry choices. It will stand up to a lifetime of wear while continuing to look good, through your future together. Unlike some other white jewelry, platinum won’t fade or change color over time and won’t corrode. The purity of platinum means that it is not only white now, but in time it will never lose its natural whiteness and turn yellow. It’s the ideal “men’s metal”! Over time, platinum will actually develop a rich finish, called a patina which creates a unique sheen on a platinum piece that many view as a romantic recording of life’s many precious moments.

Trends today toward a more casual office attire also mean that open collars with a neck chain and shorter sleeves with a bracelet have become the “norm” in office wear. Unique pieces of platinum jewelry allow men to express individuality in an elegant and understated manner. Platinum is preferred by the world’s finest designers so it’s easy to find masculine pieces to suit every guy’s individual style. Many designs start for as little as $1000.

So when it comes to giving anniversary gifts, isn’t it only fair that you should expect a gift that is precious, rare and durable? For more information on platinum or to see a wide selection of platinum jewelry styles go to www.preciousplatinum.com/designgallery

What type of platinum jewelery would you want as an anniversary gift? What would be “fair” based on the jewelery you’ve purchased for your fiancee/wife?

A Man’s Metal: Benefits of Wedding Band Durability

Thursday, December 9th, 2010

bigstock_Cutting_Her_Ring_4656336

When it comes to the requirements of a sport car, guys know about the lightness benefit of metals like aluminum. For the needs of a family car, guys know about the strength of steel. Even when it comes to things like the space shuttle, guys know about the corrosion resistant benefits of titanium. But when it comes to jewelry, specifically wedding bands, what do guys really know about the benefits of the metals used? The answer is, “probably not much”.  What they should know is platinum is the most durable metal for many reasons. Since most men don’t know this fact, many end up settling for wedding bands made from metals that are less than optimal for its purpose and for the lifetime needs of this type of ring.

Benchmark: Platinum wedding band by Benchmark

Benchmark: Platinum wedding band by Benchmark

Like everything, it’s always wise to look at the purpose and requirements of the item before determining the most appropriate material to use. That’s why aluminum is used in sports cars, steel used in family cars and titanium is used for the space shuttle. The purpose of a wedding band is to signify the rarity and precious nature of finding the one person who you wish to spend your life with. It will be worn every day, so it must remain intact through a lifetime of wear.

Once you apply this thinking to a wedding band, things become clear. First, if the purpose of a wedding band is to signify the rarity and preciousness of a unique relationship, it must be a more important metal than something non-precious like steel or titanium. A wedding band needs to be a precious metal such as platinum or yellow gold. Platinum is known to be the more precious of the two metals and when it comes to rarity, platinum is 30 times more rare than gold therefore, making it the premier choice for a unique and precious symbol.

Now, the needs of a wedding band: It must have the ability to be sized (should your finger size change) and it should not change color or fade over time (white gold will). Additionally, a wedding band needs to be able to stand up to a lifetime of daily wear on the hand. Again, platinum prevails as the premier choice to meet these needs. Platinum is an extremely durable metal, which will not wear down like other metals. Platinum can be sized, and its natural white color means it will remain white over time (white gold is a mix of naturally yellow gold with “whitening” metals). Additionally, as our bodies change over time and we may develop allergies to various elements, platinum’s 90-95% purity levels (well above the 75% purity of 18K gold or the 58% of 14K gold) mean that it’s hypoallergenic.

L - Stuller: Platinum wedding band by Stuller, R - Michael C. Fina: Platinum wedding band by Michael C. Fina

L – Stuller: Platinum wedding band by Stuller, R – Michael C. Fina: Platinum wedding band by Michael C. Fina

Armed with this information, it makes it easy for guys to understand the benefits of a masculine metal such as platinum when it comes to important purchases like your wedding band. Don’t settle for something inferior when buying something this permanent! To view the latest men’s platinum wedding bands styles in a variety of prices, visit www.preciousplatinum.com/designgallery.

What are the main factors you take into consideration when buying jewelry? Is durability one of them? Leave a comment below and let us know!

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