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Jewelry Word Explanations

Liz Collectible Jewelry web site sells mainly Costume Jewelry, sometimes called imitation jewelry. Costume jewelry is not fine jewelry, as in gold and precious stones.

The following words are used to describe costume jewelry, with explanations as to what they mean:

abalone = a deposit made from inside a seashell, also called mother-of-pearl.
assembled, hand- = the components (or parts) have been partly or completely put together by solder, by hand.
aurora borealis = a multi-color-producing light coating on part of beads or tops of rhinestones.
baguette = a rectangular narrow stone.
bakelite = a thermoset plastic, also called Catalin. It has a distinct scent when rubbed to warm, somewhat like formaldehyde.
baroque = a type of imitation pearl with an uneven or craggy shape and/or surface.
base metal, pot metal, white metal = any combination of alloys of non-precious metals.
bezel-set = deeply set within a rim of metal.
cabochon = a stone cut with no or little faceting.
carved glass = glass stones or beads which have been poured into a mold but present a craggy or incised surface, usually hand-polished after molding.
cast = made by a centrifugal method of casting metal which becomes thick and hard.
crystal = a glass stone or bead with high lead content.
faceted = cut with many facets or planes.
faux, or abbreviated f. = false, fake, imitation, as in f.pearl = fake pearl.
florentine finish = finish has a brushed or striated appearance.
gold filled, or gold-filled, abbreviated g.f. = lower in gold content than 10 KT, usually 1/20 or 1/12 KT.
gold tone = gold electro-plated, not gold as in measurable in karats.
gold wash = a thin coat of gold has been applied by either dipping or burnishing the metal, but it is not plated.
jet = a stone made of petrified coal. Note: French Jet = glass.
marquis = an oval stone which is pointed at both ends (also called navette).
open-work = the piece has open areas, see-through.
parure = a set of three or more matching pieces.
pavé = very tightly set stones, as in a pavement.
pierced-work = see open work.
plastic = made of any of a variety of plastic compounds.
pronged = stones are set with individual prongs holding them in place.
rhinestone = a glass stone, faceted to imitate a diamond.
seed pearl = a very small imitation pearl, or f.pearl.
silver tone = silver plated or coated, not sterling silver.
stamped = made by die-stamping a sheet of metal which is durable if in thick metal or sterling silver, not so durable if in brass or thin metal.
sterling silver = 925 parts silver, legal standard.
800 (or other amounts) silver = silver parts, as marked on the jewelry, not sterling silver.

Words such as amethyst, garnet, ruby, sapphire, emerald are used with the word "color" after them, and describe only the actual color of a non-precious stone. If a genuine stone or semi-precious stone is meant, the name of the stone is preceded by the word "genuine." The same applies to copper or pewter.

For more jewelry terms, follow the links below.

Click here to find out what marcasites are.

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