Affordable, prestigious, and trendy, it’s no wonder that silver is enjoying a renaissance. Considered one of the three Noble Metals – gold and platinum being the other two previously covered – silver sales have been on the rise, with an average increase of 19% from 2011 to 2012 (according to the National Jeweler/Nielsen silver survey).
Price-conscious consumers are taking note, as silver is more affordable than gold or platinum. As the whitest and brightest of all metals, it’s luster is also unparalleled, giving prestige to a metal with an already storied history.
Metalsmiths like silver because of its excellent working characteristics. It’s pliable and strong, able to bend into new shapes easily, and withstands the nicks that result from frequent wear and tear.
There are numerous reasons for silver’s resurgence. According to the November 2012 issue of JCK Magazine, silver cuff links, money clips, and dog tags have been trending upwards, making silver a particularly timely choice. Mark Maxwell, manager of Jewelry Manufacturing Arts for GIA in Carlsbad observes that “Traditional and commemorative high-end gifts like baby rattles, teething rings, and picture frames are making a comeback. These items are typically made from silver, and this has created a renaissance for the metal.”
The majority of silver is mined in Mexico, Peru, China, and Chile. In order to be called “silver” in the U.S., alloys must contain at least 92.5% pure silver.
Are you currently in the market for silver? Here are a few helpful pointers worth considering:
• Silver was more valuable than platinum during the Victorian era, and it was the metal of choice for making tiaras for the aristocracy. So you can wear your silver with the pride of pedigree.
• Sterling silver is increasingly being used in jewelry. Lines of sterling jewelry with karat gold accents are doing well, especially because the price of gold is at an all-time high.
• Contemporary designers like David Yuram and Michael Good continue to experiment with the metal, creating new and edgy designs. That means you’re likely to find hip and affordable pieces to satisfy your inner fashionista.
Versatile, contemporary, and affordable, silver sizzles for consumers, designers, and jewelers alike.