950 Platinum: Considered to be the most ideal white metal one can use in fine jewelry, platinum has several advantages over other precious metals. It is harder and therefore more durable, making it more resistant to scratching and wear. Its added strength makes a setting more secure. Platinum is hypoallergenic, so it won’t cause skin allergies. Because platinum is color-free it is considered to be an excellent neutral partner to any diamond or colored stone. Over time, platinum retains its whiteness with a steely grey patina.

950 Palladium: A white metal in the platinum family, palladium is lighter in weight and lacks platinum strength and durability, but is a more economical alternative while offering the same visual appeal as platinum.

18k white gold alloyed with palladium: Our 18k white gold is alloyed using the precious metal palladium, a member of the platinum family of metals, to be both hypoallergenic and extremely fine quality. By using a precious metal as the alloy, we avoid the commonly used alloy nickel, a base metal known to cause allergies in approximately 20% of the population. White gold is plated with Rhodium to give it a boost of whiteness, this will wear off over time depending on the wearer’s skin acidity and any chemicals the item is exposed to. Because white gold has a yellow metal content, with time the color will shift to a warmer golden white tone. Jewelry can be refinished and rhodium plated -many people chose to do so on a regular basis, before key events, or to match their engagement ring to their new wedding band.

18k yellow gold: The classic colored metal used in jewelry for centuries, gold’s warmth and richness compliments any wearer. 18k, which is composed of 75% gold and 25% alloy, maintains a high level of purity while possessing sufficient strength and durability for years of wear.

14k white gold & 14k yellow gold: These lower karat alternatives, comprised of 58.5% gold with 41.5% alloy, offer an economical alternative to the higher grade precious metals.

Sterling Silver: Available only with select items from of Earthwise® Jewelry Sterling Silver Collection, this traditional white metal offers an affordable and beautiful introduction to the world of fine jewelry. Like all sterling silver, items will develop a unique surface patina as the metal ages with time.

While you can certainly combine different color combinations like an 18k yellow gold engagement ring with an 18k white gold wedding band, we highly recommend that any rings worn together be made of the same metals (i.e. platinum and platinum, 18k and 18k, etc.) as the differing hardness between non-matching metals will result in excessive wear of the softer of the two materials.

The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) is a nation struggling to emerge from a war that claimed over 5 million lives since 1998, with preventable disease and starvation aggravated by conflict being the leading killers. Despite holding democratic elections in 2006, violence still rages in the eastern part of this country. The continuing conflict has economic and political ramifications that extend worldwide.