All the other stuff written about alloying, while informative
from the point of view of making white gold, is moot because that
isn't what happened.
On the contrary Daniel, It may not be that simple. The piece may have
been molded and cast. This may have been explained to the customer.
They may have had no idea what the jeweler was talking about all
they knew was that their piece was now white. If she believed that
someone could magically change the molecular structure of an alloy
she probably couldn't grasp molding and casting.
Here in Colorado gold aspen leaves are popular. I have had customers
bring in leaves they picked up while hiking and asked me to dip them
in gold. Yes, they think you can just dip them in liquid gold. I
tell these people about the melting temperature of gold and how
leaves burn and they look at me and say "well, a guy in Telluride
does it" ....
I understand that there are thieves and hacks in this business but I
also know that there are many, many, many customers who are clueless
when it come to jewelry concepts and technology. I hope that it was
the latter in this case.