There’s more than one reason your jewelry looks so good when you get it, and will still be so beautiful many years down the road: quality materials and artisan techniques.
Each piece from Stefanie Somers is handcrafted using traditional jewelry making techniques, right here in our Texas studio. You won’t find any off-shore mass-produced items in our collection. Most of our designs are made here from scratch, every time – cut one at a time from the raw materials as they’re ordered. Select designs are cast from our handmade models and then stoned by hand.
Here’s a quick overview of the materials that make up our jewelry:
PALLADIUM – A precious metal in the platinum family, Palladium is our go-to for most of our “white” or “silver” plating. Hard, durable, bright and easily polished, and with all the hypo-allergenic qualities of Rhodium, Palladium offers a more stable pricepoint – it’s not as efficient in the automative or aeronautics industries as its cousin rhodium.
RHODIUM – Odds are good that you’ve never heard of rhodium before, but they’re even better that you already own some. A relative of platinum, Rhodium is easily the most precious (and expensive) metal on the planet, trading as high as $30,000 per ounce (that’s no typo – thirty thousand dollars for a single ounce).
How might you own rhodium already? If you drive a car, it will be in the catalytic converter. In addition to being supremely hard and shiny – and durable – rhodium is also the best material known to filter impurities out of automotive emissions. That’s right – rhodium keeps the air you breathe cleaner. That’s what keeps it in such high demand. Its use as a jewelry metal is only a very small portion of its overall footprint. Nearly as hard as diamond, tarnish resistant and naturally hypo-allergenic, rhodium is the ideal material to bring a bright look to jewelry. It’s our “white” finish of choice, plating nearly of our jewelry. Because of its toughness and strength, rhodium plating is extremely durable, giving very long wear.
Due to it’s increasingly volatile price, as of 2021 we primarily use Rhodium plating on our Couture line. Should you prefer Rhodium, it is available as an option at a variable surcharge depending on the spot market at the time of order. Please inquire.
14k GOLD – This one you know well. Our “yellow” pieces are all plated in 14k yellow gold. Gold is much softer by nature than rhodium, so please do treat your gold plated pieces especially gently, and make sure to store them separately, away from each other. Even solid gold will scratch, and so of course will gold plated jewelry.
ROSE GOLD – A new offering, Rose Gold plating is simply gold with a slightly different alloy of metals in the mix. While yellow gold is 58% gold alloyed with a mix of 42% other metals (nickel, copper, silver & zinc), Rose Gold is alloyed mainly with copper, with usually a touch of silver. The extra copper provides a soft reddish glow to the metal that can be especially beautiful with the Rosegold family of crystals.
TITANIUM – All of our posts are hypo-allergenic, using either Titanium or Surgical Steel. Titanium is an amazing lightweight metal that’s naturally hypo-allergenic. A natural heat-sink, it was used in the thermal tiles on the space shuttle. You’ll most often find titanium posts on our cast designs. Very comfy on the ears!
SURGICAL STEEL – Our other preferred earpost material, we use Surgical Steel posts on the designs we fabricate completely from scratch. As the name suggests, these posts are safe for all to wear.
BRASS – When we build a design from the ground up here in our studio we begin with sheet brass, an alloy of copper with a bit of zinc for strength. Strong stuff, we can cut the most intricate designs imaginable and polish to a shiny mirror finish. When we have the piece completed, textured and polished, a final plating n rhodium or gold is the last step before stoning.
CASTING GRAIN – Our casting alloys are industry standard for white metal, containing mostly zinc with a trace of silver. Our castings are 100% lead and nickel free, and contain no harmful metals whatsoever.
…and of course, our crystal. Sourced from the finest and oldest manufacturers in Europe, we spare no expense in bringing you the best the market has to offer – including an impressive library of vintage stones, many of which go back to pre-WWII.
With the library of crystal colors and shapes at our disposal, we can bring you the most classic palettes to the most up-to-the-minute fashion stories. From office and teleconference looks to dinner to the red carpet and beyond, the artists of Stefanie Somers® can be your secret weapon for fashion styling and a unique flair, your own personal assistant to outshine the competition, wherever you may find it. Talk to us. Let’s create something beautiful together.
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