Most customers have questions about the choices in colors and karats of gold. There are many available choices on the market today, but we try to keep it simple. Below is your basic, need to know info and examples.
Karat: 100% pure gold which is 24K, is too soft for everyday wear and tear. For this reason, gold is mixed with different alloys to make jewelry that you can wear. Alloys are other metals mixed with the gold to make it stronger and create the variations in color. The proportion of alloys used results in the variations in karats (18k at 75% and 14K at 58% pure gold).
Colors: All gold starts out rich and yellow in color. White gold and rose gold are created by mixing other metals with the gold to give it a different color. Despite the color of the gold, the mix of metal will still contain the same amount of pure gold per karat.
Below are the basic different types of materials you have to choose from. Please keep in mind that the color displayed will vary by the device you view it on, but these examples still should give you the general level of contrast between your available options.
Yellow gold is alloyed with copper, silver, and zinc. 18K gold is the most traditional choice for a wedding band. 18K is strong, richer in color, and since it contains 75% pure gold, it is the more precious option. 14K gold has a lighter hue, great durability and offers great value in price. Both are good to work with in casting and fabrication.
Rose gold like yellow gold, is alloyed with copper, silver, and zinc. More copper is incorporated and less silver is added, resulting in a warmer hue. There is not enough copper to turn your finger green (a common concern). 14K rose gold is preferred for fabrication.
White gold can be alloyed in a variety of ways, but in this workshop, we work with a gold alloyed with copper, silver, and palladium. Brilliant white in color, extremely durable, and hypoallergenic this white gold is a premium material and an excellent choice for casting and fabrication.
More about white gold: When it comes to white gold, there is more than meets the eye. Standard white gold is alloyed with nickel to give it its white color, which has a yellow cast to it. Most of the white gold found in US jewelry stores is nickel-based and rhodium plated or “dipped” to give it a bright white, platinum color. This is a temporary finish which will wear off over time and need to be reapplied every 6 months. Nickel makes the gold generally durable, but it also makes the gold more brittle to work with. Nickel is known as a common metal allergy and the cause of why many people are allergic to white gold. Also, nickel is commonly corroded by household chemicals and cosmetic cleansing products over time.
We want you to work with the highest quality metal in its natural state and do not want to have to make you rhodium plate the wedding rings you make in our DIY workshop. For this reason, we use yellow gold that is alloyed with Palladium, another precious metal that is part of the platinum family of metals. Palladium white gold is the preferred type of white gold for DIY fabrication and is far superior to nickel. Palladium white gold tends to be the safer bet for sensitive skin, it is more precious, and looks fantastic! Although Palladium white gold is slightly grayer in color than nickel bearing white gold, it is still very white.