Shanks: There are 2 main types of wedding rings based upon the shape of the Shank or center band.
Flat Shaped Shank.
Rims: There are 2 main types of rims used in wedding ring manufacturing.
Ladies Unisex Sizes : These offer the usual Ladies ring sizes plus a number of larger sizes.
Gents Unisex Sizes : These offer the usual Gents sizes plus a number of smaller sizes.
The origins of Irish jewelry making can be traced to the dawn of time. Since before the ancient Egyptians were building their great pyramids, the Celts in Ireland were building massive ring forts (Newgrange) and crafting some of the most intricate pieces of Irish jewelry ever seen.
From about 2,000BC to 500AD gold and silver was used to make magnificently worked jewelry. Many examples of these have been discovered over the years and are on the display today in the National Museum on Kildare Street, Dublin.
Garnet (Dark Red): Birthstone for January.
17th wedding anniversary gemstone, 6th anniversary gemstone.
Symbolism: Intelligence, piety and sobriety.
Aquamarine (Light blue): Birthstone for March.
19th wedding anniversary gift.
Symbolism: Soothing influence on couples, power to reconcile differences.
Diamond (White): Birthstone for April.
10th and 60th wedding anniversary gift.
Symbolism: Given for engagement gift. The hardest know natural substance, represents love. Discovered 3,000 years ago in India and Borneo, in earliest Indian myths diamonds were seen as the essence of purity. A metaphor for power.
Emerald (Green): Birthstone for May.
20th wedding anniversary gift.
Symbolism: Eternal youth, perfect emblem of enduring love, has the power of healing.
Pearl (White) : Birthstone for June.
5th and 30th wedding anniversary gift, 3rd anniversary gemstone. Types: Natural, Cultured and Freshwater cultured. The pearl quality is judged by the orient: the soft iridescence caused by the refraction of the light by layers of nacre and also by the luster: the reflectivity and shine of the surface. Natural and cultured pearls can be differentiated from simulated pearls by rubbing the pearl gently on ones front tooth, if it feels grainy or sandy it is natural or cultured. If it is smooth it is a simulated pearl. Most real pearls sold today are cultured pearls owing to the rarity and high price of natural pearls.
Alexandrite (Green/Blue): Alternative birthstone for June.
55th wedding anniversary gemstone.
A stone of two colors depending on the light. Discovered in Russia and named after Czar Alexander II known as a phenomenal stone due to its color change.
Ruby (Red): Birthstone for July.
40th wedding anniversary gift, 15th and 80th anniversary gemstone. The worlds most valued gemstone.
Symbolism: Love, enthusiasm and strength.
Peridot (Light Green) : Birthstone for August.
17th anniversary gemstone.
Symbolism: The power to drive away evil spirits, more intense when set in gold.
Sapphire (Blue): Birthstone for September.
15th wedding anniversary gift, 5th and 45th anniversary gemstone.
Symbolism: Because it inspires sincerity and faithfulness, traditionally couples all over the world choose this stone.
Opal (many colors): Birthstone for October.
6th wedding anniversary gift, 14th anniversary gemstone.
Symbolism: Called ophthalmios or eyestone due to widespread belief that it is beneficial to eyesight.
Topaz (Orange/Yellow): Birthstone for November.
23rd anniversary gemstone. The gem of the sun, the most popular color is a rich orange/yellow.
Symbolism: Has the power to increase strength and cures asthma and insomnia.
Turquoise (Light blue): Birthstone for December.
11th anniversary gemstone.
Symbolism: Promotes prosperity, there is a European tradition of giving turquoise as forget me not gifts.
Blue Zircon (Blue): Alternative birthstone for December.
This natural gemstone suffers from the similarity in name to cubic zirconium (CZ) which is a man made white synthetic stone.
Symbolism: Aids sleep, brings prosperity, promotes honor and wisdom in its owner.
5. THE 4 C’s OF DIAMONDS
1. Carat: weight is the standard of measurement for the gemstone industry. One karat equals 0.2 grams
2 .Clarity: is an evaluation of internal characteristics judged under 10 X magnification.
3. Color: a diamonds color is evaluated from white to drawing color. For the main part color in gemstone quality range from D to M.
4. Cut: is probably the most important factor in achieving beauty and brilliance in a diamond because the angles of the diamonds facets are what cause light to reflect through the stone in a quality known as “Fire”.
Although gemstones are among the most durable of substances, they do need some care. Following a few general rules will make sure that they last for generations still looking good like the day you bought them. First of all, keep them clean. Rings in particular tend to collect dust and soap behind the stone. To clean transparent crystalline gemstones, simply soak them in warm water (not hot) with a touch of gentle soap. Opaque gemstones like lapis lazuli, turquoise and malachite require special care. These gem materials should be wiped gently with a moist cloth.
Organic gems like pearls, corals and amber should be wiped clean with a moist cloth. Be careful about chemicals in hairspray, cosmetics or perfume, they can damage pearls in particular.
Think twice before putting gems in an ultrasonic cleaner. Diamonds, rubies and sapphires will be fine but many others may not. When in doubt, leave it out. Opals require special care, never use an ultrasonic cleaner, and never use ammonia or any other chemical solution. These gemstones should only be wiped gently with a moist cloth.
With copper and silver we can make an 18kt alloy as hard as 9kt or 10kt. When you combine silver and copper in equal amounts to the gold you get a very hard quality in the alloyed gold. Most modern 18Kt alloys are made using this method. When you look at making a decision based on durability alone, there is not enough difference to favor the lower karats. The color of 18Kt gold has a rich luster close to gold in its purest form of 24Kt.
A further positive aspect of wearing 18Kt gold is it contains a quality that is even more resistant to corrosion. Gold’s lack of toxicity and its scientific properties of incredible malleability and ability to conduct energy, while remaining resistant to wear and corrosion also make it highly useful for medical science. Gold is the most important material standard in human civilization. Gold was easier to obtain in pure form than any other metal. Because of its relative rarity, gold was used as the basis for all economies and international monetary transactions.
Gold is the 50th wedding anniversary gift and first anniversary gemstone.
Symbolism : Gold represents the sun, purity of sprit and the ability to amplify energy.
In the world of spiritual healing gold has emotional power to ease tension, feelings of inferiority and anger as well as encouraging the realization of ones potential and bringing comfort. New age healers call gold the master healer. Gold is the ultimate precious metal.
There are 5 possible reasons why gold will blacken the skin. Three are chemical, one is mechanical and the fifth is a rare kind of allergy.
There is the probability that the wearers skin secretions and perspirations contain chlorides and sometimes sulphides that combine with the silver and copper in the gold alloy. These form dark colored salts of silver chloride and copper sulphate on the skin. Outside chemical influence may be to blame. In hot seaside areas, chloride from the sea may combine with normal skin secretions to cause black markings. The ring, bracelet or watch may be tarnished before been worn through atmospheric conditions, caused by a sulphures coal or fuel oil. The film of tarnish will then rub off on the skin.
A fourth possibility is black “dermographism” caused by tiny particles of dust or powder, including cosmetics. This occurs particularly in dry dusty areas. The effect is that the skin acts as human sandpaper and wears away minute particles of gold jewelry. As these are so small owing to the diffraction of light, they appear as black/violet smudges instead of gold ones.
The least likely cause of black marks is an allergy on the part of the wearer. The metal most commonly responsible is nickel, contained in the gold alloy. Gold itself and other alloying metals – silver, copper and zinc very rarely cause allergic dermatitis.
10. STERLING SILVER AND ITS ATTRIBUTES
Sterling is the standard of purity for silver. The term sterling silver denotes any silver alloy in which pure silver makes up at least 92.5% of the content.
Myth has it that the word sterling comes from the name Easterlings – coiners from East Germany states brought to England in the 12th century to improve the quality of the coinage.
Silver has been used as an ornamental and coinage metal in Ireland since ancient times and has been mined here since 2,000 BC. In Celtic mythology Nuada of the silver hand was a warrior who lost his hand in battle, then received a silver hand from Dian Cecht the Irish god of healing.
One of our most famous artifacts of silver is the Ardagh Chalice, dating from early Christian times.
The hallmarking of Irish silver began in the 17th century. Many emigrant goldsmiths arrived in Dublin after the revocation of the edict of Nantes in 1685 and had a major influence on the production of silver craft.
25th Wedding anniversary gift.
Symbolism : Silver represents the moon. A conductor of spiritual energy.
11. PREVENTING SILVER TARNISH
Tarnish does not harm the metal it is simply the chemical reaction of silver with sulphur compounds in the air and the chemical that silver comes in contact with.
Wear cotton gloves as much as possible when handling silver. This will prevent the oils and acids from your skin from reacting with silver.
Do not store or display silver with other objects which contain sulphur, like horn, tortoiseshell, elastic, latex and many glues and sealers contain sulphur.
Store in an airtight contained with a sachet of activated charcoal or anti-tarnish paper and replace it once a year.