Metal Chains That Change Their Color?
I am starting my new small business making women's handmade jewelry, but I am facing a small problem and it's affecting my satisfaction to the end result.
The METAL CHAINS, some are gold plates which are the worst - They change their color the easiest.
The nickel plated chain is much better but during summer with the sweat they turn black.
I have no idea how to deal with these products. I need chains that are not affected with hot weather or with sweat!!
Do you have any idea about better chains I can get?
Or different chain?
Actually I heard about nickel-free jewelry, want to know more about it!!!!
Thank you for your help
Chain Chain Chain...
Color Changing metal is a battle for anyone using a plated or metal that can tarnish.
If you have a customer who sweats a lot or uses a lot of perfume, you might want to suggest to them that they should rise off their jewelry and pat dry before storing the jewelry away. This will help the chain from changing color and gunk from building up in the links.
If you have a lot of gold and silver plate, you might consider changing the patina or blackening the chain to change the color. Then you won't have to worry- you darkened it yourself! You can use , or a blackening agent from a jeweler's supply.
If you are looking for another kind of chain with a lower price point, you might consider getting anodized aluminum chain which comes in different colors. Anodized aluminum is a rather soft metal and can easily scratch, but does not lose it's color.
Rhodium plated chains are hypo allergenic and look a lot like silver, but shinier. These might be more expensive though and harder to find.
Brass and Copper chain are also inexpensive and can give an antique look to your pieces.
Sterling silver can tarnish, but most people know that. Look for thinner/flatter/longer links that are lighter in weight than thick/heavy links. This will save you a bit of money since silver chain is usually sold by weight.
Keep it simple since chain price is also affected by how intricate the shapes are.
Tell customers to use a little bit of (baking soda) toothpaste to brighten up the silver if it starts to tarnish. Baking soda acts as a neutralizer and can be used with water to make a paste to clean as well.
Another alternative for silver polishing is to give your customers a small piece of "sunshine polishing cloth" to brighten up their purchase, or sell them one as an extra.
I like the idea of buying some polishing cloths, then cutting them up and giving the small piece nicely wrapped with instructions, making sure they know it's a bonus gift.
Gold is nice because it does not tarnish. Gold Filled chain is comprised of 14 kt gold on top of a base metal. Gold fill is thicker than gold plate so is not likely to wear off. It is a nice alternative to gold which is more expensive.
I noticed the vermeil comment above. The reason vermeil darkens is because vermeil is sterling silver covered in gold. Sterling silver is composed of 92.5% silver and the remaining is a harder base metal that strengthens the soft silver. The base metal mixed with the silver is usually copper, which oxidizes easily. That's why sterling silver tarnishes. The vermeil therefore darkens because the underlying sterling is oxidizing.
Don't want your gold to darken? Use gold fill or gold plate rather than vermeil.
If your customer is allergic to metals, they can try painting 4-5 coats of clear nail polish over the metal that touches their skin. This may not be a good idea for the chain though.
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