Veresbrina Jewelry Terms
Fine Silver Has a pure silver content of 95-99.9%.
Gold Filled Gold filled is much higher quality than gold plated. Gold filled has a much thicker layer of gold (almost 100% more!) than gold plated. Gold filled is obviously much more valuable and, you never have to worry about tarnishing or allergies.
Silver Plated A less expensive base metal with a layer of silver laid on top of it. My favorite base metal for silver-plate is pewter because it's less likely to show scratches since it's in the same color scheme. Brass is also good. Sterling and fine silver should last a lifetime but good silver-plated jewelry can easily last twenty years.
Sterling Silver Has a pure silver content of 92.5% and the remaining 7.5% is other metal, usually copper.
Sterling Silver Filled Silver filled is a very acceptable substitute for sterling silver. Sterling silver filled is usually a 5-10% layer of sterling silver which is bonded to either a copper or brass alloy. This is better than silver-plated because silver-filled has much more silver and bonding is stronger than an overlay which is used for plating.
Vermeil Sterling silver that has been plated with at least 10 karat gold.
Vintage The term vintage is used for items that are not antique (at least 100-years-old) but, have been around long enough to come back in style. That usually takes 20-25 years so right now vintage means the 1920's through the 1980's.