Silver (Jewelry) Chic

Why designers searching for craft, creativity, variety, and vision are eschewing gold in favor of silverWhen she joined the faculty at San Francisco’s Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts in 2001, ­Christine Dhein taught all metalsmith techniques using silver. Back then, it was principally a practice metal. Today, however, silver is as much an end as a means in learning how to make custom jewelry. “Most of our students leave planning to be designers, but primarily in silver, not gold,” she says. “If they use gold, it’s more as an accent and not the main ingredient.”The reasons for selecting silver are many—some obvious, some not. The most obvious is, of course, economics. With gold seemingly stuck above the $1,600-per-ounce mark, silver, at about $30 per ounce, is the only practical precious metal option for new craftspeople.But the influence of economics doesn’t stop at commo

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