Gold has been used as an adornment for centuries due to its extraordinary colour and superior finish once polished. It was the decorated tombs of the Egyptians that demonstrated the capability of this precious metal to produce scrumptious hues, varying from pale red to deep purple. Although the meaning of such a phenomena was not understood for generations, the ability to modify the colour of gold was apparent. It was not until the early 19th Century, when a variety known as Russian Gold gained popularity, that different colours of Gold became available. However, a craftsman's ability to create the colours of Gold that we see today is largely attributed to the creative alchemists in post war Europe, due to platinum being used solely in the war effort. This period heralded the most important discoveries for alloyed Gold in history.
Gold can be found either underground or on sea and riverbeds, in the form of 24 karat Yellow Gold. To alter the colour various other metals are added, and in the case of Red Gold the colour is due to the addition copper. The amount of Copper will affect the saturation of the red, and every goldsmith will have their own formula. The appeal of the George Pragnell Red Gold collection is derived from its rich and distinctive hue. The mesmerizing colour is due, in part, to the unique alloy used, the details of which remain a tightly guarded secret. Reminiscence of a burnt sunset setting across the Sahara, the ability of Gold to reflect nature's greatest colours continues to astonish. During the alloying process it would be desirable to use a higher level of Silver, which would in essence tame the Gold. However, such practices would dramatically reduce the vibrancy, an unthinkable option for the craftsmen.
The Red variety of Gold has experienced somewhat of a renaissance in recent years, a new dawn in the perpetual change of fashion. For such vibrant colour to emanate from the Gold, the skill of the goldsmith is paramount. Whether a bangle or necklace, every piece has been made by hand, which is necessary to produce the quality of finish and artistry.
The final, and arguably, most important stage in every piece of jewellery's creation is finishing. By no means an afterthought, and a task reserved only for our specialists. Like the finished piece, the tools a goldsmith will use to polish are unique to him, adapted through time to provide the best possible finish.
Whether to adorn the clasp or compliment the shape, diamonds set by hand elevate every piece of Red Gold jewellery.
The bangle in the featured image can be found here along with other examples.