Category: Glossaries

  • Choker

    A very short necklace. Chokers sit above the base of the throat and usually measures between 30 cm and 40 cm.

  • Precious metals

    Silver, gold and platinum group metals (platinum, palladium, rhodium, ruthenium, iridium and osmium) are considered noble or precious metals.

  • Fine metal

    Fine metals are pure metals. A fine metal has no other metals added to form a metal alloy. Fine metals are all elements on the periodic table.

  • Melting point

    All metals, except mercury (Hg), are solids at room temperature and normal atmospheric pressure. When metals are heated they will turn from a solid into a liquid state. The melting point of a metal refers to the temperature at which this happens.

  • Boracic powder

    Also commonly known as boric acid or boracic acid, it is a white powder that is used to protect metal surfaces from oxidation while soldering. 

  • Ammonia

    Ammonia is a chemical often used as a cleaning agent in jewellery manufacture.

  • Marcasite jewellery

    Marcasite jewellery are inexpensive, usually mass-produced silver jewellery with faceted pyrite (not actually the mineral marcasite) glued onto it. The pyrite gems are flat-bottomed so that it can easily be glued; pyrite is too brittle to set. The silver is oxidized black in places, which, together with the steel-like glint of the pyrite, results in…

  • Organic materials

    Organics are materials derived from animal and plant sources. In jewellery, organic materials can further be classified as gem organics and non-gem organics. Examples of each are: Gem organics: Derived from animals Pearl. Ivory. Shell (mother-of-pearl and tortoiseshell). Coral. Derived from plants Plants themselves are not considered durable enough to be gems. Note: Can fossilized…

  • Alloy

    An alloy is a mixture of two or more metals. Jewellers often refer to the mixture of metals added to the fine metal as “the alloy”, though technically the entire mix is an alloy.  Precious metals are alloyed for various reasons: to change the colour of the metal (e.g. white gold or rose gold), to…

  • Twisted wire

    Twisted wire is when two wires are wound around each other to form one rope-like wire. The twisted wire can be used on its own, or it can be used as an embellishment in rings or around frames.  After twisting, the wire can be pulled through a draw plate, or rolled flat or square through…