Saturday, September 26, 2009

18K & 22K Gold

Gold is the most stable of all metals. Used to make jewellery, objects d'art and in ornamentation. It also has a practical purpose when coated onto fixtures, furnishings, cars and just about everything else to provide protection & a long lasting shine. More recently, I have tried gold facials where thin sheets of pure 24k gold are applied to the face to create a mask. The same type of gold foils are used to dress opulent desserts in Michelin starred restaurants. Buddhists offerings sometimes comprise of these to gold leaf the statues.

Pure gold is very soft and seldom used in large quantities on it's own. Jewellery are often made of 22k or 18k gold. 18k or 75% gold is the high lustre bright yellow gold we all recognize and greatly loved by the older generation. Although today's generation tries to avoid it, I managed to find quite a few distinctive pieces at the neighbourhood goldsmiths, that provide retro plastic heart shape cases with "Goodfish" pouches.

Perhaps the most obvious choice would be the Dragon Phoenix bangles and necklaces that the Chinese goldsmiths have refined to a high art; 3D detailing, sometimes with pearls, rubies and sapphires. These were the wedding standard for the bride-to-be, not so much these days. (picture above is of a Dragon Ring). Gold charms with a distinctively Chinese flavour of ingots, banners, abacus etc. Goddess of Mercy charm (see below) with miniature scriptures embossed on the opposite side.

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