Monday, February 9, 2009

Jewelry Replicas are Friendly to Practical Budgets

By Elvin Retinz

If you have designer jewelry tastes without the budget to match, you can still enjoy the styles of your favorite designers at a price you can afford. The answer for you is designer replica jewelry. Designer jewelry is replicated by many other jewelry companies, and some of these replicas look so real and convincing that only you will know that it is not really the real thing. However, before you buy the jewelry, it is helpful to understand how you can tell a real piece of jewelry from a fake piece of designer jewelry and how to shop for the best piece of replica jewelry you can find.

The Hallmarks of a Great Product

Most high quality replica jewelry makers mimic the designer brands exactly in the product design but keep the costs down by using cheaper materials. That is why a replica ring that looks like a Tiffany diamond ring can be a quarter of the price or less - it looks the same, but the diamond is not real and instead of platinum, the ring setting may be sterling silver or some other less expensive material.

If you want to spot the real thing however, all you have to do is look for the hallmark. When a jewelry designer uses a so called precious metal when creating their piece of jewelry, they are required by federal law in the United States to mark their jewelry with a hallmark - a company logo or insignia that shows where that piece of jewelry came from. When a hallmark has to be used is dictated by how much of the metal is used in the setting. Replica makers do not use enough of the metal to require a hallmark, while high end jewelry designers always do.

One thing to watch out for, however - some replica jewelry makers try to convince their customers that they are using precious metals, so they can try to charge a higher price. Simply look for the hallmark on the product. If you don't see one, the jewelry maker is trying to scam you.

Let the Experts Weigh In

Many replica jewelry makers do things like replacing precious stones with semi precious stones in their jewelry designs to cut down on production costs. However, semi precious stones are not necessarily cheap, and there is another level of stones - imitations made from plastics - that some replica designers use instead. These are used on necklaces, earrings and even celtic engagement rings.

Whereas jewelry made with semi precious stones may cost a few hundred dollars, jewelry made from plastics can cost less than $10. However, some replica jewelry makers attempt to sell plastics at semi precious prices. Get your jewelry checked out by an appraiser even when buying semi precious stones to make sure you are not getting taken to the cleaners. - 16651

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