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Mixing metals?


#1

Greetings all,

I’ve lurked for almost a year now, learning as I go. This is a
terrific resource! and I’m happy I’ve been able to participate in
it.

Here’s my question: I create artisan jewelry with gemstones & metal.
I’ve noticed that other artisan jewelers often mix metals – say,
vermeil with goldfill, or 14 & 18k. So now I do as well… but I’m
getting some feedback from individuals that this may not be the best
idea. One artist thinks I shouldn’t use anything less than 14k with

Is there a body of opinion about this? Clearly for fine jewelers,
this isn’t an issue – at least, I don’t think it’s an issue!

Interestingly, I find a mix of sterling and 14k to be quite
lovely… but I’m not sure about the other metals.

Thanks, everyone.
Barbara Lee
Gemella Contemporary Jewelry
www.gemella.biz


#2

mix any metals you like…as an artisan no one should
dictate-anything…but…when mixing goldfill and vermeil w/ plumb
metals you will probaly want to plate the exposed base metal edges,
joins, etc so you don’t ruin your pickle with the coper that will
leach out from the brass in gold filled, vermeil is USUALLY fine
silver or in some cheaper cases sterling underneath the layer of
bonded gold (14/20, 12/20) but i have gotten some student questions
about “bali” gold filled and vermeil that leads me to believe some
unscrupulous types are selling gold filled as vermeil or gold d’ore
as some jewelers refer to the stuff…so know your supplier, and buy a
pen plater at the least, if you are planning on mixing gf or vermeil
into your art…also it is perhaps wise to add those metals last after
all other soldering operations are done because heating those metals
can often cause the bond to be broken ( from the base metal) and
either the gold is absorbed by the silver as the silver has a lower
melting and flow point in d’ore, or you can get some varied results
with heating gold filled -depending on weather its clad on all sides,
one side, and the gauge, or mil of gold plated onto the base also due
to the melting/flow temperatures…hope that clarifies…something…if
you need more details feel free to email me off orchid.