Is Your Jewelry Really One-of-a-Kind?
Most of the jewelry I make is one-of-a-kind, designed and made by me in my Houston studio. My pieces are truly unique, meaning that I never attempt to duplicate them. Often that is because it is impossible to find the exact same stones in a particular cut or shape. When I buy my stones, I always look for something different. Usually there is just one strand or one stone available. However, every now and then, upon request, I have made similar pieces to the original, but they are never exactly the same due to differences in the stones' shapes, cuts, color, or the metals used.
What Metals Do You Use?
I use a variety of metals in my jewelry. The main types are listed here:
Gold is measured by Karat (kt). 24kt gold is solid gold, 18kt gold is 18/24 gold (or about 3/4 gold), 14kt gold is 14/24 (or about 58% gold) and 10kt gold is 10/24 (or about 43.5% gold). The color of gold changes with the karat. 24kt gold is a rich, darker, yellow color. The less gold, the less yellow tone you will see.
Gold-fill is made from solid "Gold" and "filled" with other alloys. Gold-filled wears like solid Gold because its outer surface is solid Gold. Gold-filled is created by using heat and pressure to fuse a layer of Karat Gold to copper, brass, or some other base metal. The bond produced is a permanent one.
Gold fill is much more valuable and tarnish resistant than vermeil or gold plate. It does not flake off, rub off or turn colors and it is hypoallergenic. When given proper care, Gold fill can last just as long as real gold. In the jewelry industry the quantity of gold must be at least 1/20th by weight of the total product.
Pronounced "vehr-MAY," it is 925 Sterling Silver plated in Gold. A typical example is Sterling Silver coated with 18K or 24K Gold. To be considered vermeil, the gold must be at least 10 karat (42%) and be at least 2.5 micrometers thick. Vermeil is much more durable than simple very thin gold plating, but not as durable as gold fill.
Gold plate is created using an electro-chemical process that places a layer of Gold on copper, brass, or some other base metal. The thickness of the gold is less than both gold fill and vermeil and can rub off over time if not coated. Most of the gold plate I use in my jewelry has a coating to protect against rubbing or flaking off.
Fine silver is 99.9% pure silver and is softer than sterling silver. Fine silver takes much longer to tarnish than sterling.
Sterling silver is an alloy of silver containing 92.5% by mass of silver and 7.5% by mass of other metals, usually copper. This is why sterling silver is marked .925.
Argentium silver is sterling silver that contains germanium instead of copper to reduce tarnishing. All of the silver wire I use is Argentium silver.
With the rising price of silver, silver fill has become a popular alternative to sterling silver. Silver fill is similar to gold fill with either a 5% or 10% layer of durable sterling silver bonded to (filled with) a copper-alloy or brass-alloy center. If you can wear sterling silver, you can probably also wear silver fill as it wears just like sterling.
As with gold plate, silver plate is created using an electro-chemical process that places a layer of sterling silver on copper, brass, or some other base metal. The thickness of the silver is less than silver fill and can rub off over time if not coated. Below is an example of silver fill on the left and silver plate on the right. Notice the difference in the thickness of silver on each.
All silvers tarnish when they come into contact with air, so when not wearing, keep your silver pieces wrapped in tissue or in plastic baggies.
What is a Drusy?
In geological terms the word drusy (also referred to as druzy, druze, druse or drusie) is used to describe a fine, natural coating of crystals within a stone or geode. Druzy can be found in many different colors depending on the host stone that it has developed on. Quartz is one of the most common drusy types because of the prevalence of silica throughout the world. Drusies are extremely popular for their sparkle and I use them often in my designs.
I love a piece of jewelry, but it is the wrong length for me. Can you change the length?
For most pieces, I can change the length for you. Message, email or call me (281-881-6524) before purchasing the piece and I will let you know if its possible.
I don't have pierced ears. Do you make clip earrings?
I do. The majority of my earrings can be converted to clips. Message, email or call me (281-881-6524) and let me know which earrings you're interested in and I will be able to tell you if they can be changed to clips. I can also email you pictures and prices of different clip styles available.
How do I take care of my jewelry?
Each piece of jewelry I make is made by hand, usually with natural stones and pearls. Some are more delicate then others, but you should always take care with natural gemstones. Its best to store your pieces separately, in soft pouches or plastic baggies. Avoid knocking or dropping your stones as they are fragile and can easily crack or break. Wipe your jewelry clean with a soft cloth after each wear and store separately. Do not shower or swim in your jewelry. Avoid contact with products such as hairspray, lotions, or perfumes.
Wires and strings can break. No wire can withstand being bent or twisted frequently. When traveling, make sure your jewelry will not move around in your suitcase or bag and wrap each piece separately so the stones and pearls don't rub against one another. If a wire does break, please contact me - I will be happy to repair it.