I've decided to use mixed metals in my new Pirates Collection. Most of my other collections only use silver.
Here's a bit of information about the metals and their terms that I use in my jewelry creations.
Silver - When I use the term silver, it is Sterling Silver, as in 925. The term Sterling means the metal is composed of 925 out of 1000 parts silver. The remaining 75 parts, or 7.5 percent, is copper. Most people are not allergic to sterling silver. I sometimes add a dark patina to give an antique look to silver.
Copper - My copper pieces are 100% copper. I often add a patina to either warm to an even brown tone or to an almost black color.
Some people can wear copper and have no reaction at all. On others, the copper will react with the skin and leave a dark or green mark. When I design a piece with copper, I try to take this into account. I try to have silver in the place that is in contact with the skin. For example, earring posts are always in sterling.
Brass - Brass is an alloy (a combination) of copper and zinc. There are many recipes for this and each produces different colors and strengths. The type of brass I use has a very high copper content. Brass often looks like gold when polished but can quickly turn dark. I usually use a patina to control the darkening of the brass. If you are allergic to copper, you might not be allergic to brass.
Mary Lu Wason
is a studio jeweler. Here she shares the inspirations, discoveries and process of creating her art jewelry collections.
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