Gold combines four basic characteristics that make it a universally treasured possession, different from any other metal used in jewelry making.
Beauty – Gold’s natural color can be further enhanced by alloying it with small amounts of other metals, yielding a spectrum of exquisite shades. By simply adjusting alloys, metalsmiths can create yellow, rose, green and white gold. For example: more copper results in a soft rose color; additional silver creates green gold; and palladium produces white. Many jewelry designs today combine multiple colors of gold in one jewelry piece.
Purity – It is estimated that only slightly more than 100,000 tons of gold have been taken from the earth during all of recorded history. And although gold can be found in rivers, seas and land in many parts of the earth, it is not easily extracted. Opening a mine is a time-consuming and costly operation, and several tons of ore are required in order to produce just one ounce of the precious metal.
Durability – Look no further than the nearest museum where gold jewelry, coins and artifacts from ancient civilizations attest to gold’s enduring beauty and permanence.
Workability – Jewelers throughout the ages have preferred gold to all other metals for its beauty and ease of workmanship. Gold can be melted, or shaped, to create any design. It can be alloyed with a number of other metals to increase its strength and produce a variety of colors and can be re-melted and used again to create new designs.