Palladium Becoming Powerful
White metals such as white gold and platinum have surged in popularity over the past decade, but there's one big problem with both of them – as their popularity has surged so has their price tag. So, jewelers have been looking for alternatives to the white gold cost issue and one alternative that is all over the place these days is.
This metal has been especially popular with the bridal crowd, both for engagment rings and wedding bands like these pictured here from Danforth Diamonds. First, a little about this metal, palladium, from Professional Jeweler.com:
Palladium, unlike platinum, comprises only a small chapter in the history of jewelry. Of the platinum group of metals (platinum, palladium, iridium, rhodium, osmium and ruthenium), palladium has the lowest specific gravity and the lowest melting point.
[...] Palladium use was not restricted and was soon promoted in the jewelry trade press as a viable alternative to platinum. Because it weighed less than platinum, palladium jewelry could be made larger and still be comfortable to wear; in addition, palladium's malleability made stone setting a breeze. Palladium also could be combined with gold to produce a version of white gold, another substitute for platinum. Despite these advantages, palladium was gradually phased out after World War II when platinum became available again.
Palladium does have its drawbacks – [...] Palladium's color may be a pleasing light gray, but it doesn't take a high polish the way platinum does and has a tendency to become dull over time.
These disadvantages outweigh palladium's lightweight malleability, and many jewelers refused to work with it once platinum was again available.
But jewelers are not working with this metal again, and I've been seeing it all over the place lately. As an alternative to other white metals, I have to confess that I'm not completly sold on it yet. I have a few palladium chains, and they in no way compare to my one precious platinum chain. The metal is much darker, almost like a gun metal but not quite, and so I don't see it as a substitute. As a metal on it's own, yes, and it comes cases if you are looking for a piece of jewelry that has that estate sale look, then yes again, but if you want to try to suggest to others that your palladium ring is a platinum ring, good luck.
Here's another antique style ring from Danforth Diamonds. and as I said, this is the type of design that I think palladium is perfect to use with.