Definitions [E-L]

Electroform / Electroplate
Electroform is a special production technique that results in hollow jewelry or artefacts.
During this process a wax model is placed into a plating bath which uses electricity to deposit the metal on to the outer surface of the wax model. Once the plating process is complete the wax is then removed, the result: a hollow item which compared with its overall size is very lightweight.
This technique is mainly used to create large and bold items, which would be impossible or too expensive to create through other production techniques, such as casting.

The name Emerald derives from the Greek word Smaragdos which literally means 'Green Stone'. Emerald is the most precious stone in the Beryl family which includes Aquamarine, Golden Beryl and Morganite. The finest specimens of Emerald are clouded by occlusions. These are not necessarily faults in the stone as they can be used to prove that the stone is genuine. These occlusions are referred to by experts as jardin.
Significant deposits of Emerald are found in Columbia, however only a third of the stones from the Columbian deposits are worth cutting. Good quality specimens have been mined in Zimbabwe where the crystals are small but of a gemstone standard. Other known deposits of Emeralds can be found in Brazil, Afghanistan, India, Ghana and Zambia to name a few.
Emeralds have a Mohs hardnessrating of between 7- 8.

A vitreous Enamel surface is achieved by fusing glass particles to sheet metal or cast iron and firing it at temperatures in excess of 800°C. This results in a surface that is incredibly hard-wearing to all the elements. It is temperature resistant (up to 800°C) and chemical resistant with exceptional colour stability. The finished enamelled product is easy to maintain, and to keep clean. Therefore, it can be used for many applications internally and externally. Natural Enamel is very expensive which is why most of today's Enamel is synthetic.

Extender Chain
An extender chain is a small length of chain (usually around 2"-3" long) which is added to an existing chain to provide extra length if required.
A flat surface cut or polished into a gemstone is known as a facet. These flat surfaces are created on gemstones to enhance the overall appearance and beauty of the stone.
Faceting the perfect angles is vital and a very crucial part of making the stone more reflective because light reflection is how a gemstone brings out its individuality and its inner beauty. There are many types of cuts in use today from round, oval, cone-shaped, square, rectangular, triangular to multi- cornered odd shapes. In addition, there are some very cute shapes such as pear-drop, barrel and heart-shape.

Filigree is gold or silverwire that has been twisted into patterns and then soldered to create different types of jewellery. This kind of jewellery production method dates back to the Egyptian Pharaohs.

Findings are a range of components that are used in jewellery production or as jewellery parts, such as; bracelet clasps, earring hooks, earring backs, jump rings and link locks to name a few.

The fineness of a precious metal i.e. Gold or silverrefers to the ratio of the primary metal when alloyed with other metals.
This is for all those people who thought Garnets were redà Garnet is a group of stones which includes around 20 different variations, such as; Andradite, Hessonite and Rhodalite - to name a few. Garnets have a wide range of colours and the only colour that they don't appear in is Blue. A Garnet's Mohs hardnessis between 6 and 8.

Gold is a highly sought after precious metal which has been used since prehistoric times for making jewelry, coins and ornaments. The purity of gold is measured in Karats:
Pure gold (24K) is very, very soft - One gram nugget of pure gold can be hammered into a sheet one meter square.
Due to the softness of the metal, when it's used for jewellery production it has to be alloyed with other metals. This, therefore, alters the hardness, durability, colour and various other properties of the gold. For example, to create Rose Gold, 25% copper is added to the melt with 18k gold. White gold is created when either nickel or palladium are added to the alloy. Blue Gold is created by mixing gold with iron and Purple Gold gets its colour from mixing gold with aluminium, Blue Gold is very brittle and is only used in very specialised production techniques. Gold today has many more uses; food, drink, medicine, and electronics to name just a few.
South Africa leads the way in gold extraction. In the 1800's, the country produced around 50% of the world's total output. In the late 1900's it was up to 79%. This number has since declined, mainly due to the difficulties extracting the metal. Since 2007, China leads the way in gold output.

Gold Plating
Gold plating is a process that applies a layer of gold to a surface of another metal, usually silveror copper, to give it a brighter, lasting finish. However, over time and due to the chemical reaction between the metals tarnish will occur and the thickness of the gold layer and the quality of the process will influence the time span of the layer resisting tarnish.
Gold plating can be carried out with most forms of gold alloy.
Please see Vermeilfor more details.

Gold Filled Jewellery
Can also be referred to as ôRolled Goldö This technique comprises of a solid gold layer bonded with heat and pressure on to a base metal such as brass. This can give the base metal the look and luster of 14K quality gold. The length of time the metal sustains its finish depends on the jeweller and can last up to 30 years if the work is by a qualify technician.
Hallmarks are official or standard stamps that are applied to precious metals and used for various purposes. Mainly, Hallmarks are used to indicate the metal's fineness*, while additional hallmarks are used to identify the sponsors/manufacturers and in some countries identify the assay office** that stamped the product to prove its authenticity.
*An example of a Sterling Silver hallmark would be the numbers '925' which means '925 parts to 1000'. In layman's term its 92.5% pure silver.
** In the UK, for example, it is illegal to distribute products which have not been hallmarked by the local assay office.

A member of the Garnet family, Hessonite is also known as the 'Cinnamon Stone' due to its cinnamon-brown to orange colour. This is a transparent stone which has deposits in the USA, Brazil, Canada, Madagascar and Sri Lanka. Hessonite's Mohs hardnessrating is between 6.5 and 7.

Howlite, also referred to as 'snow white' is a very soft mineral which is white to grey in colour and occasionally has black veins running through it. Howlite is usually dyed to create imitation Turquoise. Howlite gets its name from the geologist who discovered it, Henry How. Howlite has a Mohs hardnessrating of 3.5.

Hoop Earrings
Hoop earrings got their name from the hoola hoop to describe their round shape, yet, these days hoop earrings can be oval, elongated or even square.
An iridescent object, such as moon stone, is an object that can display a change of colours when the light or angle-of-view changes. Another example of an iridescent object would be an abalone shell.

Iolite, which means 'violet stone' is also known as 'water sapphire' or 'lynx sapphire'. It is a stone that displays many colours, from violet-blue to light blue to yellow-grey colour.
Iolite has sometimes been used as an inexpensive substitute for Sapphire due to its low price tag and availability. It has been mined in many countries including Brazil, Burma, Canada and India to name a few. Iolite has a Mohs hardnessrating of 7-7.5 .
Jade is a semi-precious stone that has a wide range of colours from green to black to white to brown. translucent Jade is more sought after and valuable than opaqueJade. Stones with imperfections are usually used for carving.
For thousands of years the Chinese have regarded Jade to possess medicinal properties.
There are two different minerals that are known as jade: Jadeite and Nephrite. Jadeite is the harder of the two mineralsand is more often used in jewellery. It can be mined in China, Russia and Guatemala, however, the most sought after stones come from Burma, now known as Myanmar.
Nephrite is slightly softer and is often used for carving bowls and vases.
Nephrite has been sourced in China, New Zealand, Russia, Guatemala and the Swiss Alps. There is also the Dark green Jade, know as Canada Jade, which is found in Western Canada. Jadeite can be Jade's Mohs hardnessrating is 6.5-7.

Jasper's name is derived from the Greek meaning 'The Spotted One'. Jasper is a very common stone which is opaquein appearance. It has many colours and patterns. Sometimes it has been known to have a panoramic pattern similar to that of a landscape. There are many varieties of Jasper, Agate-Jasper which is yellow to brown in colour. Egyptian Jasper is also known as a 'Nile Pebble' which has a strong yellow and red colour. Basanite, which has a fine grain, is black in colour.
The stone has been discovered all over the world including Egypt, Brazil, India and Canada.
Jasper has a Mohs hardnessrating of between 6.5 and 7.

Jet is also known as gagate. Jet is fossilised coal which is hard and very lightweight. Genuine Jet is warm to the touch and can be distinguished from synthetic Jet which is usually made from black glass or plastic.
Jet has been mined in Whitby in UK for many many years, believed to be as far back as prehistoric times. It has also been mined in Russia, Germany, France and Spain; however these sources are said to be inferior to the one in the UK. The Mohs hardnessrating is 2.5 to 4 .
Karat (kt / K) is how we measure gold for it's purity. Below is a table showing how pure the gold is at each level.
Karat Percent Gold
24 Kt. 100% Gold
18 Kt. 75% Gold
14 Kt. 58.3% Gold
12 Kt. 50% Gold
10 Kt. 41.7%

Kyanite can have a colour range from the deepest-darkest sapphire blue to green, from grey to white. The stoneÆs colour can sometimes be cloudy and very streaky.
It can be found in many countries around the world such as Brazil, Burma, Kenya, India and Australia.
Its hardness rating depends on the way its scratched. This is because the crystals in Kyanite are long and thin this can also affect the cutting of the stone. Kyanite has a Mohs hardnessrating of between 4.5 and 6.5.
Labradorite is an opaque mineral that displays splashes of many colours after the polishing process. The darker variety of the stone is called Black Moonstone; it's usually cut flat to highlight the brilliant colour within. It was discovered in Canada in a place called 'Paul's Island' near the town of Nain, Labrador. Labradorite has a Mohs hardnessrating of between 6 and 6.5.

Lapis Lazuri
Lapis Lazuri is a very rich blue colour. This semi precious stone is made from rock, not mineral. The stone is porous and quite soft and scratches very easily. Because of this, if Lapis is left in water too long it will dull the sheen. Lapis is regarded by many people around the world as the stone of friendship. It has been mined in Afghanistan for over 6,000 years. Chile is said to have extracted lapis of a quality that can compete to that of AfghanistanÆs. Lapis Lazuri has a Mohs hardnessrating of 5.5

A lariat is an open-ended necklace which either looped into a knot or used with a slide knot.

Lever Back
Lever Black is an old style earring clasp that has once again become fashionable.