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Gold versus Silver Jewelry

Today the price of an ounce of gold reached close to an all time high. Today(April 20,2006) we’re at $613. The last time gold was higher was in 1980 when it reached an all time high of $615. Many people believe that the current values will continue to increase. Currently the price of gold is $110% above the 2001 year end closing. What does this mean to you, the consumer of fine jewelry? Simply put, gold has just about priced itself out of the reach of many consumers.

Now, what’s a girl to do? Gold is coming back into popularity right as we are reaching those all time high costs. There is a good answer.

If you really prefer gold jewelry to silver, you can pick a piece of sterling silver with a vermeil finish. Silver prices have almost doubled since 2001, too, but the big difference is that sterling silver is $12.00 per ounce (about 1/50th the cost of gold).

Vermeil (Pronounced vehr-MAY) is a term that means gold over silver.

Vermeil is a gold-plating process which was developed in France in the mid-1700s. In the 19th century, France banned production of vermeil because the process involved the use of mercury. Present-day vermeil refers to an overplaying of gold onto silver using a safe electrolytic process.

In the past, gold plating was notorious for wearing through to the base metal. Today’s technology makes that a thing of the past. The plating done today will last a lifetime with proper care.

Silver combined with either a colored stone or with freshwater pearls in a multi-strand necklace or bracelet provides a symbolic statement of elegance and an affordable cost.

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Article by Michelle Lindsey

© 2006
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