The history of Rose gold
What is Rose gold?
Rose gold, also known as red gold and pink gold, is a gold and copper alloy that is widely used for jewellery. Increasingly popular, today rose gold is commonly used for wedding and engagement rings, bracelets, and other jewellery such as earrings, watches and pendants.
The metal was popular in Russia at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The metal at this time was also known as the now obsolete ‘Russian Gold’, as they were one of the few wearers of the pink hued metal.
The use of rose gold in jewellery became more widespread during the Victorian era, where the rosy precious metal, along with yellow gold, dominated the jewellery industry.
As the 1920s approached, rose gold made an impact on the jewellery wearing public, partly due to Cartier’s introduction of its now iconic “Trinity” ring, and writer Jean Cocteau’s endorsement of it. In 1924, Cocteau privately commissioned Cartier to create the ring, comprised of three intertwining bands made in yellow, white and rose gold, which he wore on the little finger of his left hand.
The names are used interchangeably, however the difference between red, rose, and pink gold is the copper content: the higher the copper content, the stronger the red coloration. Pink gold uses the least copper, followed by rose gold, with red gold having the highest copper content.
World War II
Around the start of the Art Deco era in the 1930s, platinum became the most popular metal choice. This trend was interrupted by the restriction of the use of platinum, at the start of World War II in 1939, where the metal was used for military applications only. Around this time, yellow and rose gold grew in popularity, and remained favourable styles until the 1950s.
Rose Gold fever
Throughout history, demand for the precious metal has waxed and waned. Despite this, the past few years have seen a surge in popularity for the glowing metal. Use of pink gold hue has spilled past jewellery, into iPhones, fashion accessories and the beauty industry, as well as interior design and homeware. Subgroups of the minimal movement were quick to adopt the metallic pink tones, with Instagram loving milennials gushing over pink copper set against greenery. This use of the metal gave it a cleaner, more contemporary reputation, shedding the art deco, vintage influence and evolving into a cleaner, more modern aesthetic. The tech savvy generation really seized the trend, literally opting to view their world through rose gold tinted glasses.
The peak in popularity saw rose gold embraced by many creative industries, one of which was the wedding industry. The metals romantic hues were seen gracing many wedding venues in all corners of the world. The warmth that the metal brings, as well as its aesthetic ability to translate to both vintage and modern settings, make it a great choice for weddings and bridal decor, as well as jewellery. The rose tinted appearance earns its place as the most romantic metal.
Rose Gold use in jewellery
Considered softer than its white and yellow counterparts, the metal brings warmth to a piece of jewellery and works well with coloured gemstones. The blushed metal flatters most skin tones, from very light skin to much darker complexions. Due to its mix of copper, which is a durable but low cost alloy, the metal is often a stronger and more affordable choice than platinum.
Rose Gold Engagement Rings with Steven Stone
Trinity ring image courtesy of Cartier http://www.cartier.co.uk/en-gb/collections/jewelry/collections/trinity-de-cartier/rings/b4052700-trinity-de-cartier-ring,-classic.html