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COSTUME JEWELRY MATERIALS

Numerous techniques have been developed for producing costume jewelry:

  • Gold. An incredibly valuable and respected metal. Because of its softness, it must be combined with some other metal, such as copper, zinc, or tin, or be used simply as a coating in order to for the final product to be resilient enough.
  • Silver. Another valuable metal that must be mixed with something else if it is going to be robust enough for jewelry. A common variant is sterling silver, combined with copper for a resilient and refined result. Like with gold, many silver jewelry is actually silver-plated.
  • Platinum. One of the heaviest and most valuable metals known. Sometimes a more popular choice than gold as the metal for jewelry. Two similar metals, palladium and rhodium, can also be used.
  • Plastics. Various plastics, such as bakelite, have been used to produce attractive yet inexpensive jewelry in numerous colours and styles
  • Semi-Precious Stones. One of the defining traits of costume jewelry is its use of semi-precious stones as opposed to the rarer and much more expensive precious stones (diamonds, pearls, rubies, etc.). Semi-precious stones are generally selected for their beauty rather than their rarity and frequently are ones that can emulate the style of more precious stones. Popular semi-precious stones include moonstones, jade, opals, citrine, topaz, and rhinestones.
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