Monthly Archives

October 2020

24k, 18k, 14k, 10k

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Gold: It’s all about the karat

The value of gold is increasing, making it more than just a piece of jewelry. It’s now an asset. 

When you’re shopping for a piece of jewelry, you may be looking for a specific style or design. But purchasing the right karat is just as important. Here are some tips to help you make a perfect choice. 

Gold: Know Your Karats

Gold karat (k): Gold is measured in karats with the maximum being 24. When a piece of jewelry is said to be 24 karats, that means it is pure gold, and 24 out of 24 parts of the metal is gold.  Important note: The karat (k) measurement for gold is different than carats (c) used for diamonds. Consider the following when selecting the gold karat (k) of your piece:

  • 24k gold isn’t recommended for jewelry as it bends easily and won’t retain its shape. It also scuffs easily and, because it’s prone to wear, will quickly look worn.
  • 18k gold is made of 75% gold, 25% alloy metal. 18 karat is less likely to provide any irritation for those with nickel allergies and it elicits a rich yellow hue. However, it is easy to scratch and expensive. 
  • 14k gold is made of 58.3% gold, 41.7% alloy. This karat is the most popular weight for engagement rings and other wearable jewelry. It’s durable, provides a great gold color, and is fairly affordable. 
  • 10k gold is the most durable and least expensive of all weights. At 41.7% gold and 58.3% alloy, the gold color is paler but is much more difficult to scratch or bend. However, due to the higher level of alloy, if you are allergic to copper, silver, nickel, zinc, or iron, it may cause irritation or outbreaks. 

Don’t Compromise.

Did you find the perfect piece, but you’d like it in a different karat? No problem. American Jewelry and Loan has an on-site expert jeweler that can create a piece to your exact specifications- using the karat of your choice at a fraction of the price of big box jewelry stores. 

Your custom piece (at the perfect karat) is waiting. 

It’s exactly what the industry doesn’t want you to know. 

Don’t forget, it’s also an investment that brings you cash when you need it. Your high-value jewelry can be used for pawn over and over again. That makes it a solid investment in style- and peace of mind. 

Does Your Diamond Make the Grade?

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American Jewelry carries GIA Certified Diamond JewelryShop Diamonds with Confidence

Engagement. Anniversary. Birthday. New Mom. Retirement. Holiday. Diamond jewelry is always the perfect gift to celebrate an occasion. 

Don’t put off investing in the perfect piece to celebrate your big moment. 

We’re about to decode the 4Cs of diamond shopping so that you can feel confident in buying your next piece of diamond jewelry. 

Diamonds: Knowing Your Carats

Diamonds are graded in carats (c). The GIA (Gemological Institute of America) developed this global standard for describing and valuing diamonds. In this system, diamonds are rated based on the 4Cs of quality: color, clarity, cut, and carat weight.

Evaluating Diamonds: Get the Grade

Finding an amazing piece of diamond jewelry should be stress-free. Remember, the 4Cs are here to help you choose a quality diamond. But ultimately, you’re looking to strike a balance between falling in love with the perfect piece of jewelry and getting a quality diamond. 

  • Color. The less color, the higher the grade. Grades range from D (colorless) to Z (light yellow or brown). The most common grades of diamonds used in jewelry are in the range of G through J or ‘near colorless.’
  • Clarity. The clarity of a diamond is a rating that’s determined based on the number of inclusions and blemishes on the inside and outside of the diamond. This rating follows a scale from FL (flawless) to I3 (included). The closer to flawless the better, but many of these characteristics are simply too small to be seen by anyone other than a trained gemologist. 
  • Cut. This rating is not on the cut type (princess, oval, round, emerald, etc.) rather the way the cuts or facets interact with light. The rating takes into three primary factors: face-up appearance, design, and craftsmanship. This is the most complex and difficult to one to analyze.
  • Carat Weight. Diamonds are measured in milligrams to the hundredth decimal place. Diamonds weighing 100 milligrams are called 1 carat or 1.00ct. 
    • Traditionally, the larger the carat, the more rare and desirable, and expensive. However, other factors (color, clarity, and cut) will play an important role in determining it’s value. A smaller carat diamond may be of higher quality than a larger diamond based on the other Cs. 

Feeling Overwhelmed? Don’t! 

The 4Cs were developed by trained professionals. While it’s important to know the basics, most people aren’t shopping with a loupe (a magnification device used by trained gemologists). So here’s what we recommend. 

  • Focus on selecting a piece of jewelry or diamond that has great color and clarity. Look for diamonds with less color and those that don’t show blemishes or inclusions to the naked eye.
  • Seek out pieces that you find beautiful and convey your personal style. Jewelry, especially diamonds, is a very personal choice often selected to mark an important moment in your life. There’s no rating that can compare to the confidence and happiness you or your loved one will exude when wearing the perfect piece. So, be mindful of the 4Cs, but above everything else, choose the diamond that will bring the most joy for many years to come.

Latest Styles. On-Site Jeweler. Warranty Programs.

Did you know that American Jewelry and Loan carries all of the latest styles, can create a custom piece for you with our in-house jeweler and offers a phenomenal warranty program? It’s exactly what the industry doesn’t want you to know. Get the very best and an amazing price.

Don’t forget, it’s also an investment that brings you cash when you need it. Your high-value jewelry can be used for pawn over and over again.

That makes it a solid investment in style- and peace of mind!

Engagement Rings

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Before You Pop The Question. Check out the latest trends.

Shopping for an engagement ring? We’re here for you with the latest trends (at a fraction of the price of traditional jewelry stores). So listen up. Here’s how you get your fiance her dream ring and still have enough money left over for the honeymoon!

Shop American Jewelry and Loan for the latest in engagement ring trends. 

Multiple Stone Rings

Three stone rings have grown in popularity thanks to Meghan Markle. This royal style usually has one larger center diamond accompanied by two smaller diamonds on each side. 

Asscher Cut

Vintage and art deco, this cut is described as an octagonal diamond with a square shape also sometimes called, ‘square-emerald cut.’ Originally made famous with Elizabeth Taylor’s 33-carat ring, this is the cut of Jessica Alba, Pippa Middleton, and Zoey Deschanel’s engagement ring too. 

Sustainability

Diamond sustainability is growing in popularity, especially with millennials or Gen Zs. It’s not hard to adopt this trend- and it’s affordable too. One way to do this is to use recycled, re-used, or reset diamonds. At American Jewelry and Loan, our on-site expert jeweler can make this trend come to life. Just ask! 

 

Diamond Alternative

Diamonds are the traditional choice for engagement rings, but the latest trend is gemstones. Check out this diamond ring with a gemstone halo. Stunning and unique. 

 

The Classics

You simply can’t go wrong with a beautiful setting and matching band. We carry a wide selection of rings in every style at every budget. And, because we also offer layaway, you can truly get the piece you’ve always wanted. Our inventory changes frequently, so visit often. Looking for something specific, let us know. Our expert on-site jeweler can set your perfect diamond ring.  

 

Engagement at Exceptional Prices

Purchasing an engagement ring, or having one custom-made, at American Jewelry and Loan is the smart choice for those seeking ‘wow’ without breaking the bank. It’s exactly what the jewelry industry doesn’t want you to know. 

Get more at American Jewelry and Loan. 

 

 

Gemstones

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Emerald Ring

Bring on the Gemstones!

Gemstone jewelry continues to be a popular addition to any jewelry box. Whether you’re shopping for a gemstone based on your birthday, the folklore of their healing powers, or simply drawn to a favorite color, gemstones jewelry is beautiful and can be worn day and night. 

 

Here are a few tips for evaluating gemstone quality:

  • Color is king. There are several factors that make up the color quality of a gemstone. However, traditionally darker tones are graded as better stones. That being said, some customers prefer lighter gemstones that show more sparkle.  
  • Uniform color. Top gemstones, when examined from both sides on a white piece of paper show consistent color. The value of a gemstone increases with consistent color. 
  • Size. The size includes the weight and face-up diameter of the gem. Of course, as the size and demand increase, so does it’s value. Some gemstones are rarely seen in large sizes, while others such as quartz and topaz can be mined in thousands of carats. 

The American Gem Society has compiled a list of the folklore healing properties of gemstones.

  • Amber is known for its stress-relieving and calming properties.
  • Ruby is known to increase integrity, devotion, and happiness.
  • Amethyst is considered the gemstone of meditation, peace, balance, courage, and inner strength.
  • Learn more about each gemstone’s lore at the American Gem Society.

Birthstones

A great way to celebrate your birthday, or the birthday of someone special. 

  • January: Garnet
  • February: Amethyst 
  • March: Aquamarine
  • April: Diamond
  • May: Emerald
  • June: Pearl
  • July: Ruby
  • August: Peridot
  • September: Sapphire
  • October: Opal
  • November: Topaz
  • December: Tanzanite 

Like all jewelry, choosing a gemstone is meaningful.

With so much to consider, we recommend selecting a piece that is balanced with quality and style… and perhaps a few healing powers too!