Shopping for gold beads and findings can be frustrating, especially for those new to jewelry making. How can you tell quality, lasting beads from those that will quickly tarnish and wear? “Gold jewelry” can mean any number of things. In this segment, we’ll break down the differences so you can be sure you’re getting what you pay for.
Why There’s a Big Difference in Cost Between Gold Jewelry
The term “gold” can mean a lot of things when you’re shopping for jewelry making supplies. Gold can be used to describe the color of beads as well as the composition. That’s why the makeup of gold beads should always be disclosed. Without this information, you have no idea what you’re getting.
Types of Gold Beads
- Solid Gold Beads
You’d think 22 or 24 kt solid gold beads would be ideal. But despite the high value of solid gold beads, they may not be the best choice for lasting jewelry due to the softness of the metal. Other options offer a more practical alternative for everyday wear.
- Gold-filled Beads
Gold-filled beads are a high-quality and lasting alternative to solid gold. They hold 100 times more gold than plated beads, with a gold alloy content of 5%, compared to 0.5% for plated beads. Using gold-filled beads, you can create today’s hottest jewelry trends without stressing about the cost. Far more affordable yet still valuable, gold-filled beads won’t tarnish or turn colors, or cause skin reactions in most people. Gold-filled beads are created by bonding a thick layer of 12 or 14 kt gold to another metal such as copper or brass or base metal. This layer is so thick most jewelry can be worn daily for up to 30 years without fading. Gold-filled jewelry is typically stamped with its gold content alongside the claps. (Beads are not stamped) Buying from Crystal Findings as shown in the website or in catalog, you do get Gold-Filled beads, findings or ready to wear gold-filled beaded jewelry.
- Gold Plated Beads
Gold plated beads are inexpensively made by depositing a very thin layer of gold over less precious metals like steel ot similar economical metal alloys beads or findings. At 1/1000 to 3/1000 of an inch, this layer does not last long, leading gold-plated jewelry to fade and tarnish quickly. Skin reactions and staining can occur with some poorly constructed beads. Gold plated jewelry will not have a quality mark, only a brand name stamp, if any.
Which Type of Beads are Right for My Jewelry Making Project?
Crystal Findings offers an amazing selection of premium gold-filled beads and findings, including:
- Plain, corrugated, twisted, and fancy round gold filled beads
- Flat, saucer, and rondelle shaped gold filled beads
- Popular tubular and rice-shaped beads
- Unique stardust beads and interlocking shapes
- Fancy gold-filled drop beads and spacers
- Gold-filled charms
- And more!
Create luxurious, lasting jewelry without breaking the bank. Shop the wide selection of gold-filled beads at Crystal Findings. Contact us to place an order or to learn more about our wide selection of premium wholesale jewelry-making supplies today.