What are the differences in jewellery metal types?

We offer jewellery to hold pets ashes in a few types of metals. But what are the differences in metal types? Here's a short explanation of what we normally keep in stock.

9k or 9 carat solid gold: Unlike carats in diamonds where it is used as a measure of weight, carats in gold are used as a measure of purity. 24 carats are pure gold with no base metals mixed in. Pure gold however is too soft for most uses, especially jewellery that gets worn every day so you will find pieces made at lower carat ratings to allow for longevity. Copper, zinc, or silver may be mixed with 24k gold to give it the ability to be shaped into fine jewellery however it lowers the rating depending on the amount of other metals used. 

Our keepsake jewellery is a mid range mix. 9k or 9 carat is our standard mix to allow for us to use good quality gold at a reasonable price. We can have pieces made up to a maximum of 14 carat upon request.

Gold Vermeil: Vermeil is a term given for a thicker coating of gold over sterling silver than regular gold plating. Extra gold is layered over the top to allow for extended wear without any of the inner silver showing through. After enough time and without good care, all coatings can deteriorate so we suggest looking after your jewellery to keep it in its best condition.


.925 Sterling Silver: Jewellery isn't usually made from pure or 99% pure silver as, like most precious metals, it is softer and less malleable to make beautiful designs. The most common type of jewellery silver is .925 which means it is 92.5% pure silver and 7.5% copper mixed in. That gives it the ability to be shaped and to also keep it for a long period of time.

Like all good quality silver, it requires to be occasionally polished to keep its shine as air can oxidise it. Remember how you would see the Manor's butler polishing the silverware? Well, that's why. It will bring out the shine and remove any tarnishing. Make sure you use a proper dedicated silver cleaning solution and cloth as to not scratch the surface.


Gold Plated: Plating is still a layer of proper gold over top of a base metal. You may have gold plating over sterling silver or stainless steel etc. It is generally only a thinner coating and while it is still quite tough, any hard knocks or wearing against other hard objects can cause it to show the metal underneath.


Stainless Steel: Our pet ashes cremation jewellery is made of 316L stainless steel which is a higher corrosion resistance than regular 304. Known for its toughness it is a very hard iron compound and is ideal for jewellery and watches that are worn daily and suffer the knocks and abuses of everyday life.