Some say that jewelry introduces a person even before they speak. Your jewelry collection says a lot about your personality. Your favorite pieces tell a tale of your adventures. And the jewelry items you wear often mirror your mood.
And when it comes to jewelry, gold pieces are top-tier. But solid gold can be quite expensive. Gold vermeil is an excellent alternative, especially for people who are into slow fashion. Like the pieces at ioola, slow-made gold vermeil jewelry can be great statement pieces without breaking your wallet.
Gold Vermeil, in a Nutshell
Vermeil jewelry is more than just a trend
It hits the right mix of value, quality, and elegance. Gold vermeil has been around since the 1700s. It’s a coating method used to make royal gems in France. Vermeil is a French word that’s also referred to as gilded silver.
The production of vermeil jewelry is now regulated. In the US, a piece of jewelry is only categorized as "vermeil" if the base is sterling silver. The piece must at least be 10 karat gold, and the plating must be no less than be 2.5 microns thick.
Unlike gold-plated pieces, gold vermeil has a thicker gold layer.
Gold Vermeil vs. Gold Plating
While vermeil and gold plating share specific characteristics, there is also substantial variation in terms of quality and durability.
Vermeil jewelry differentiates from gold-plated pieces by how thick the gold layer is. Typically, gold plated is only 0.5 microns thick. And because gold plating is unregulated, there is no standard for how thick the gold should be on the plated jewelry. This means the pieces are less durable. They also tarnish faster than vermeil.
Furthermore, the base material of gold-plated jewelry can be anything, so they are usually made using less substantial precious metals.
In all aspects, vermeil jewelry outperforms plated jewelry.
What is gold vermeil:
Benefits of Gold Vermeil Jewellery
Vermeil jewelry pieces are gentler on your skin. Gold vermeil is less prone to trigger allergic reactions since jewelers use precious metals.
Excellent Alternative to Solid Gold
Vermeil looks similar to solid gold, especially to the untrained eye. This makes it an ideal and economical choice for those in the market for gold jewelry. But gold vermeil's beautiful color fades over time. When this happens, the jewelry must be replated, which is still less expensive than buying solid gold.
Great Statement Pieces
Slow-made vermeil jewelry pieces are one-of-a-kind. Their unique design and craftsmanship make them great conversation pieces.
It will take a long time for gold vermeil to tarnish because of its thick gold coating. And if the piece eventually fades due to regular use, its imperfection adds a sense of character to the jewelry.
Tips to Care for Gold Vermeil Jewelry
- Wear your vermeil jewelry pieces last and remove them first to avoid exposure to soap, lotion, and perfume.
- Remove them before showering or swimming. Chlorine may cause discoloration or damage to the surface.
- Buff each piece with a microfiber cloth as needed. Do it gently.
- Avoid polishing your jewelry with cleaning solutions. Use jewelry cleaning tools made specifically for gold and silver pieces instead.
- Use an airtight bag or tightly sealed container to avoid tarnished jewelry.
Short of buying solid gold, vermeil jewelry is one of the best alternatives available. Gold vermeil, especially ceramic-coated, can last for decades. Ceramic coating is another fantastic feature of slow-made vermeil jewelry.
You may not know the application by name, but you've likely worn or seen jewelry with vivid metallic-colored finishes. These stunning colors come alive through the process of ceramic coating, which adds shades and hues to metals without giving them an enamel-like sheen.
In ioola, we use only sterling silver as a base for our gold vermeil pieces. In addition, the jewelry is coated with ceramic where possible or anti-tarnished to further protect the piece from wear and tear. This provides twice as much protection for the jewelry, making ioola pieces exceptional, exclusive, and high-quality.
Ceramic Coating in Brief
Ceramic coating is a type of e-coating, an application that covers the surface of a jewelry piece with an organic lacquer. This method gives the jewelry a uniform and consistent coating.
Ceramic coating has two purposes: technical and decorative. Technically, the semi-transparent ceramic coating is resistant to oxidation and abrasion. For aesthetic purposes, pigments can be added to the coating to make different colors and then copied onto the metal.
Ceramic Coating vs. Enameling vs. Plating
Enameling is the process of applying powdered glass to a metal surface. Plating applies a gold covering to another metal using an electrical current. The ceramic coating uses an electrical current to bind the ceramic particles onto the surface of the jewelry. With ceramic coating, you get an easy-to-clean layer that helps protect the jewelry from scratches.
Benefits of Ceramic Coating
Aside from its uniqueness and charm, ceramic-coated jewelry offers several advantages.
Ceramic coating offers a greater variety of colors and finishes. Colors are not confined to white or rose gold plating. With ceramic coating, it's possible to blend colors aesthetically.
Ceramic coating provides jewelry, even those with intricate designs, a uniform thickness. The coating is thorough and detailed because the solution flows consistently on the metal surfaces.
Ceramic-coated pieces have fewer allergens. People who are allergic to metal are less likely to have an issue with them.
Ceramic coating has no chemical reaction with the metal it coats. The resulting semi-transparent appearance allows the beauty of the metal to shine.
Coating with ceramic is more environmentally friendly since it uses up less energy than electroplating.
ioola jewelry pieces are typically 22K or 24K gold vermeil and plated 5 microns thick. And because they are ceramic-coated or anti-tarnished where coating is not possible, they're guaranteed to last a long time. When properly cared for, these unique pieces can turn into precious heirlooms. They make lovely complements to any jewelry collection too.
Our Must-Have Jewellery Essentials for 2022
To start a collection, every woman should have jewellery essentials, and every jewelry box should have some classic jewelry staples, such as these versatile but bold earrings for everyday use. Jewelry essentials also include unique statement pieces like this gold chunky cuff bangle.
Layering jewelry is another classic way to amp up your fashion game. Use a gold flat snake chain necklace as a base, a rolo chain necklace gold vermeil with adjustable lobster clasp for contrast, and a Buddha pendant necklace for a thoughtful statement to create a fantastic layered look.