I am back with the jewelry journal after a long break ! And this time with a topic that is discussed every time I meet my vendors and karagirs !
Pure / Sterling / 925 Silver
Please note if someone says the jewelry that you see is made out of 99.9% pure silver it is not true. Pure silver is too soft to turn it into jewelry and so the silver jewelry you see has small OR large percentages of other metals , predominantly copper !
So the “Purest silver” that you are referring has 4 to 5 % of copper in it most times which makes it harder and easier for jewelry making ! Copper adds strength without affecting the “precious” look and feel of silver apart from the fact that it increases resistance to tarnish.
Sterling silver is generally referred to purity of 92.5%. Which means , weight of copper or any other metal is 7.5%. This is ideal and can be tested with simple purity tests with a jeweler close to you !
As far as jewelry is concerned the silver purity can be as low as 60% and still no one would be able to tell that its not 925 just by looking at the jewelry. Silver jewelry pricing primarily depends on its weight as well as the craftsmanship involved in it.
That explains why a chain that more than 8 grams is priced at 500. But a nosepin thats probably not even a gram is priced at 400 and up at your favorite silver jewelry seller. Also if the piece is entirely handmade it deserves premium ! :)
Oxidized Silver
There is no reason why oxidized silver jewelry should be priced at a premium. It is a myth. It is exposing silver to sulfur or similar acidic conditions. The method is used to give an antique finish to jewelry.
German Silver
There is NO silver in german silver. It is an alloy ( Copper + Nickel + Zinc ). Immensely popular , Thanks to its silver finish and affordability.
I am trying to keep it short this time so feel free to shoot your questions !