What Are The Best Metals to Make Jewelry


Jewelry is made from many different types of metals from copper to Platinum. Many people starting out in jewelry design want to know the best metal to use in their designs. This is a question that has no easy answer. A designer must look at availability, cost, wearability, ease of use, and the luster of each type of metal before deciding on the perfect choice. The metal must be both ductile and malleable so it can be shaped in your jewelry designs.

This article will focus on the beginner designer and what metals are best for those with limited resources and tools. The most important factor for the amateur designer will always be ease of use. Hard metals require special tools to work with.


Suggestions for the beginner at jewelry design

 A beginner usually has limited tools and needs to choose a metal that is relatively soft and easy to form. Gold and Silver both fit this category. A person can even use a soft metal like copper or even jewelers brass to get their first design off the drawing board and into a display case. Copper has a problem with oxidizing and staining skin and must be plated with nickel, silver, or gold. This will give the final product a great luster that will last for years.


The Wearability factor

Wearability is usually taken into account when deciding what type of jewelry you are designing. Necklaces and bracelets can be made with softer metals as they are usually protected from bumps and dings. Rings are a special case. We use our hands and fingers all day. A ring will undoubtedly be subject to bumps, scuffs and abrasions and needs to be made from harder metals. Gold is a good choice for rings because it comes in variety of purity that means it can be hard or soft. 10ct gold is about 40% pure and is a lot harder than 24ct pure gold. This variation in purity can help the amateur designer make great looking rings and still keep costs under control.


Luster or finish desired

Luster is one of the most easily controllable areas of jewelry design. An amateur can design and ring, necklace, or bracelet and use modern electroplating to give the final product a sheen that will make everyone take notice. When you set out to make your first design, we at JDRC suggest you use a cheap and readily available metal. Don’t blow your budget on the metal. Take into account the fact that you may need to try a few different variations before you get your final product. Remember to use wax or some other medium to get the design perfect before you switch to working with metals.


Exotic metals in jewelry

There are many newer exotic metals coming into the jewelry industry over the last few decades, they are becoming mainstream now and more accepted. However most are difficult to work with, metals like titanium, stainless steel are hard to work but have unique properties making them desired.