Naturally Platinum

Article from Berganza


Wednesday 23rd September 2015

Various metals have been used to create some of the most extraordinary pieces of antique and vintage jewellery. The word platinum derives from the Spanish word ‘platina’ meaning ‘little silver’. Acknowledged since the 1900’s, platinum’s durability and natural brightness has been and still is today highly treasured.

Annually, only about 133 tons of platinum is mined, compared to about 1,782 tons of gold. This illustrates the rarity and uniqueness of this metal, therefore showing how privileged we are able to offer some of the finest handmade pieces of platinum set with remarkable gemstones.

The majority of platinum used in antique jewellery is 95% pure. Due to its natural brightness, diamonds set in platinum create a striking appearance and overall it enhances their true beauty, see reference 20987, 21036 and 21269 all set with hand cut diamonds as well as all set in platinum.

Platinum has many desirable qualities. For instance platinum has an exceedingly high melting point and one of the highest densities of metals found in nature. Having these attributes, craftsmen found it a challenge to use platinum in jewellery as it required high levels of heat for it to be more workable. You’ll notice in many of our Edwardian rings, platinum is used for the claw settings whilst the band is in yellow gold. This is due to the fact that platinum was a new metal and was only used in the settings. Please refer to references 21154, 20853, and 19857.

Platinum enabled decorative techniques to used more regularly such as millegrain, whereby tiny beads of metal are added to create endless sparkle with the gemstones. Please see references 11602, 15871 and 21334. Platinum also lent itself to many open work designs and scalloped detailed edges creating the illusion of fine hand-made lace, reference 21371.

If you are looking for a special piece of jewellery set in platinum, look no further! View Berganza’s exceptional collection of antique and vintage individual pieces of jewellery online or in store.

front view Ornate diamond cluster ring, circa 1920. berganza hatton garden
Ornate diamond cluster ring, circa 1920.
Ref: 21592
front view Child & Child pendant brooch, English
Child & Child pendant brooch, English, circa 1900.
Ref: 15871
front view Tiffany & Co diamond ring berganza hatton garden
Vintage Tiffany & Co. five row diamond ring, American, circa 1970.
Ref: 21572
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