Our extra texture sandcast and rock ring collections undergo a process to darken areas of the metal to make the texture really stand out. They are either oxidised or ruthenium plated, depending on what metal the piece is made from.
Silver oxidises naturally with time – have you ever noticed an old piece of silver jewellery go black? Well, that’s it oxidising. We simply fast forward this process by dipping each piece in a solution that oxidises the silver immediately.
It’s trickier to change the colour of gold, platinum, palladium and titanium because they are unreactive metals. So, when we want to make any of these metals black, we ruthenium plate them.
Ruthenium is from the same family of metals that platinum and palladium belong to, and as such is also very unreactive. We’re yet to hear of anyone having any sort of allergic reaction to it.
Will the black areas in my ring change colour?
Oxidisation can be polished off and with a bit more effort so can ruthenium plating – however, because of the rugged nature of our jewellery, the darker areas are slightly recessed beneath the overall surface of the ring, so they don’t get much wear and tend to stay black for many, many years. If the black areas do somehow wear off your ring, do just let us know and we can re-apply the finish for you.
Does blackened gold still have a hallmark?
Neither oxidisation nor ruthenium plating affect the purity of the gold your ring is made from and as such, they will all have their corresponding hallmark. The same goes for silver, palladium and platinum.