Thursday, January 24, 2013

The Incredibly Versatile Copper

Hammered Copper Earrings
It represents Venus, both the planet and the goddess.  It is the universal symbol for female (♀), and in hieroglyphics is represented by the ankh, which symbolizes eternal life.  It is associated with Friday, the goddess Aphrodite and the country of Cyprus, where the word cuprum originates.  Atomic number 29 on the periodic table, it has a melting point of 1083o C (1981.4o F) and a boiling point of 2567o C (4652.6o F).  It is COPPER.

No one knows exactly when copper was first discovered, but earliest estimates place this event around 9000 B.C. in the Middle East.  Copper and its alloys have played an important role in many civilizations, from the ancient Egyptians, Romans, to modern day cultures around the world and has been a major factor in nearly all aspects of history, technology, medicine, architecture, art and culture in general.  It was used for thousands of years in the making of tools, weapons, coins, medical instruments, ornaments, and - yes, you guessed it - it was used for making jewelry.  The oldest copper jewelry piece discovered is a pendant found in northern Iraq that dates back to 8700 BC.  


Freeform Agate Slab and Brushed Copper Necklace and Earrings Set

So it comes as no surprise that one of the top trends we are seeing today and especially this season is the infatuation for copper jewelry. Copper has a quiet refinement and an understated, timeless quality because it holds the promise that it could last a thousand years or more.  A copper jewel will take on a different patina in time but it will not lose any of its intrinsic beauty.

Over 400 copper alloys are in use today.  The most familiar forms of copper are pure copper, brass (copper-zinc alloys) and bronze (copper-tin alloys).  Versatile, copper can range in tone from rose to deep brown and from a brilliant shine to a weathered, antiqued patina. It can be hammered, cut, brushed, etched, polished and oxidized into different surface textures and patinas.  Whether on its own or mixed with different gemstones, copper is a classy, affordable, equally beautiful alternative to the more expensive metals available on the market today.

"Copper Mountain"

Turquoise and Brushed Copper Bracelet

As the copper ages and is exposed to various elements, it can gain a patina and its brilliance will transform over time into a warm brown hue.  While copper tarnishes easily, it can be just as easily cleaned and turned back into its original stunning look.  Create a solution of fresh lemon juice mixed with a dash of salt.  Submerge the copper jewelry piece into the polishing solution and swish it around to coat the surface.  This solution will remove the patina that comes along with tarnishing, restoring its original brilliance.  Rinse the jewelry with water and dry it gently with a soft, dry cloth.  Jewelry polishing cloths can also be used as an alternative to this natural method.  
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For beautiful, affordable, one-of-a-kind pieces of copper jewelry visit the online gallery now and find a unique design for the unique YOU.  Enter coupon code FREESHIP at checkout to receive free shipping and handling for all orders in the US.  

                                  View gallery here:

"Caribbean Dream"
Azurite Chrysocolla and Hammered Copper Earrings

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