Vermeil is one of the biggest trends in the jewelry world right now as it offers the perfect balance between quality and value. Vermeil is a type of gold finished material that is composed of a thick layer of gold over solid sterling silver. The thickness of the gold is what sets vermeil apart from standard gold plating. For a piece to qualify as vermeil, it must have at least 2.5 microns of gold over sterling silver compared to simple gold plating which is a thin film of gold over a base metal. The heftiness of the gold layer means that it is much less likely to wear off or tarnish as gold plated jewelry would. Vermeil usually looks like gold to the naked eye, which makes it a great alternative for those who don't want to pay the high price for pure gold jewelry. To keep your vermeil bright, avoid contact with water and rough use.
Caring for your jewelry is of the utmost importance if you want it to remain in its optimum condition and last.
1.) For all types of jewelry, avoid wearing it in the ocean, showering with it, or applying any perfumes or moisturizers while wearing it. All of these are common sources for dulled stones, tarnished metals, and de-lustered pearls.
2.) Regularly polish your metals. Be gentle to avoid abrasion. Silverware polishing cloths work just as well as most jewelry polishing wipes and can be found at most stores for low prices. Polishing your jewelry will keep the metals bright and gleaming for a long time and will prevent natural oxidation processes that might weaken the metal.
4.) Avoid wearing jewelry while working out or during intense physical activity. Perspiration has a similar affect as saltwater on metals, leather, and pearls.
5.) Be careful with your jewelry! If you love your jewelry, it will love you back. If you are constantly tugging at it or banging it against things, it is possible that stones can crack and chains can break. While the materials I use are generally capable of withstanding daily wear, aggressive treatment can make the jewelry vulnerable to breaking or give it a less than optimal appearance.
These are general guidelines for all jewelry and should be kept in mind for all of your jewelry, not just your Christiana Layman design!