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Designs by Debi Handmade Jewelry Dictionary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

A

AB (Aurora Borealis) ~ a finish on Swarovski® crystals that give them a brilliant sparkling effect inspired by the Northern Lights; crystals designated "AB" have this finish on one side of the crystal.

AB2x ~ a finish on Swarovski® crystals that give them a brilliant sparkling effect inspired by the Northern Lights; crystals designated "AB2x" have this finish on both sides of the crystal.

Anklet ~ An anklet is a piece of jewelry worn about the ankle. You can see the various anklet styles available from Designs by Debi here.

Argentium™ Silver ~ a type of 92.5% sterling silver containing a slightly reduced 6.4% of copper and 1.1% germanium, which creates tarnish resistance. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Awareness Jewelry ~ jewelry made and worn to bring awareness to a particular cause; usually incorporating the cause's color and awareness ribbon, for example pink for breast cancer. You can find Designs by Debi Awareness Bracelets here.

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B

Base Metal ~ non-precious metals used as a base or core for plated and gold-filled items. Base metals can include brass, copper, nickel, zinc, lead, aluminum and tin. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Bail ~ a metal loop used to hang a pendant from a chain or other stringing material

Bali Silver ~ Fine silver beads and components handmade by silversmiths in Bali, Indonesia. You can find much more information about Bali Silver and Vermeil here.

Bali Vermeil ~ Gold plated sterling silver beads and components handmade by silversmiths in Bali, Indonesia. You can find much more information about Bali Silver and Vermeil here.

Birthstone ~ A set of 12 gemstones, each representing births in one of the twelve months. Stones chosen can vary by culture.

Bracelet ~ A bracelet is a piece of jewelry worn about the wrist. You can see the various bracelet styles available from Designs by Debi here.

Brass ~ a copper and zinc alloy with a gold-like appearance that is relatively resistant to tarnish. For more information about jewelry metals, see the
Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Briolette ~ a faceted, teardrop-shaped gemstone or glass bead

Bridge Jewelry ~ jewelry that bridges the gap between fine or precious jewelry and costume or fashion jewelry. The jewelry you find at Designs by Debi is considered Bridge Jewelry.

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C

CAL ~ CAL stands for Comet Argent Light and refers to a finish on Swarovski® crystals in which a layer of silver foil is added to half the crystal

Cat's Eye ~ man-made glass beads made by fusing quartz fibers together. The beads change hues as they capture light from different angles and reflect it in a way resembling a cat's eye.

Chain ~ a series of connected loops, links or rings available in various shapes, sizes, lengths and metals

Charm ~ small shapes or ornaments that can be worn as pendants or that dangle from bracelets

Choker ~ a short necklace that fastens closely around the neck; usually 14-16 inches

Copper ~ a naturally-occurring, reddish-brown, malleable metallic element. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Clasp ~ a fastener of various types that opens and closes and allows for attaching the ends of bracelets, necklaces and other peioces of jewelry. You can find a guide to clasp styles here.

Closed Jump Ring ~ a jump ring that is soldered closed

Clutch ~ a finding used to fasten a post or fishhook earring to the ear

Cone ~ a design element used to gather multiple strands together creating a single point to attach to a clasp or another design element

Crimp Bead ~ soft metal bead or tube formed with crimping pliers to secure each end of a strand of jewelry

Crystal ~ lead glass that has been hand or machine cut with facets to make it sparkle

CRYSTALLIZED™ - Swarovski Elements (Swarovski® Crystal) ~ This is the brand name for all loose crystal elements made by Swarovski®, the world's leading producer of precision-cut crystal. Swarovski® Crystal is made in Austria and is considered to be the finest in the world. You can find much more information about Swarovski Crystal in the Reference Center.

Culinary Grade Pewter (aka: Lead-free Pewter) ~the term "lead free pewter" is used to describe pewter that meets the stringent FDA standard of less than .05% (or 500 parts per million) lead content in pewter in contact with food. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Cultured Pearls ~ like natural pearls, cultured pearls grow inside a mollusk, but they don't begin as a foreign substance that accidentally makes its way into the mollusk. Humans insert mother of pearl or a piece of shell into the mollusk. Over time it becomes coated with nacre. The depth of the coating depends on how long the beads are left in place before being harvested, but typically the culturing process occurs over several years. You can learn more about pearls in the Pearl Guide in the
Reference Center.

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D

Dangle ~ I use the term dangles to refer to a group of beads hung, usually at the clasp end of a bracelet, to add motion and thus visual interest to the design. But dangle can be used to describe any part of any piece of jewelry that hangs free and moves with the wearer.

Druk ~ smooth, round glass beads

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E

Earrings ~ Earrings are pieces of jewelry meant to hang from the ear lobes. You can see the various earring styles available from Designs by Debi here.

Extender Chain ~ a piece of chain usually 1 - 2 inches in length attached to the end of a strand of jewelry to allow the wearer to extend or vary its length

Eye Pin ~ straight piece of wire with a loop, or "eye" at one end

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F

Filigree ~ delicate and intricate ornamental work

Finding ~ a component used in jewelry design. The term usually referes to such things as clasps, head pins, jump rings, etc.

Fine Silver ~ Silver that is designated fine, pure or .999 is the purest form of silver available. It is not usually used in jewelry because it is too soft to retain a shape. It is softer and more brittle than sterling silver. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Freshwater Pearls ~ formed in freshwater mussels and clams living in lakes, rivers and ponds. They are not as round as saltwater pearls and don't have the same luster and shine. But they come in a wide variety of shapes and natural colors and are much less expensive than saltwater pearls. You can learn more about pearls in the Pearl Guide in the Reference Center.

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G

Gauge ~ measurement of the thickness of wire; the higher the number, the thinner the wire

German Gold Filled Wire ~ tarnish-resistant half-hard round wire widely considered to be the finest quality wire produced for the jewelry-making industry, second only to solid sterling or gold; the 10k gold finish is actually a 10/40 fill bonded to a pure copper core.

German Sterling Filled Wire ~ tarnish-resistant half-hard round wire widely considered to be the finest quality wire produced for the jewelry-making industry, second only to solid sterling or gold; the sterling finish is actually a SS/40 fill bonded to a pure copper core.

Glass Bead ~ a bead formed by winding molten glass around a mandrel (steel rod)

Gold ~ There are many varieties of gold. See also Bali Vermeil, Gold Filled, Gold Plated, Gold Vermeil and Karat Gold. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Gold Filled ~ Items designated a gold filled are made by combining a layer or layers of gold to a base metal (usually brass), then forming the metal to the desired thickness and shape. In addition to the thickness of the plating, the difference between gold fill and gold plating is the method by which the plating is done; gold fill is applied by heat and pressure bonding and is more durable than electroplating. It has a long life and can be worn by most people without reactions or difficulties. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Gold Plated ~ Items designated as gold plated have an industry standard of 0.15 to 0.25 mils thickness of gold plated to the surface of the base metal. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Gold Vermeil (pronounced "vermay") ~ Items designated a gold vermeil are made of sterling silver heavily electroplated with 14kt or 22kt yellow gold. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Guardian Angel Prayer Chain™ ~ This is a product that I created back in 2007 and it is unique to Designs by Debi. It consists of two strands of beads and charms hanging from an ornate, textured Bali Fine Silver Heart and can be used by people of any faith. The prayer chain's function is to serve as a meaningful representation of intentions that can be held during prayer to bring comfort to the holder.
Designs by Debi Guardian Angel Prayer Chains™ can be found here.

Gunmetal ~ copper, tin and zinc alloy similar to bronze that typically has a gray,
blue-black or brown-black finish. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

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H

Hammering ~ method of texturing metal

Head Pin ~ a stright piece of wire with a flattened head at one end

Hill Tribes Silver (also known as Karen Hill Tribe Silver or Thai Karen Silver) ~ fine silver handmade by the Karen Hill Tribe silversmiths in Thailand. You can find out more about Hill Tribe Silver here.

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I

Illusion Necklace ~ A necklace made with an monofilament (clear) material in which the beads appear to be floating on the neck. You can see the various necklace styles available from Designs by Debi here.

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J

Jump Ring ~ A small round, oval or triangular wire ring used to link different parts of jewelry together. Jump rings an either be open or closed (ends are soldered together).

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K

Karen Hill Tribe Silver (also known as Hill Tribes Silver or Thai Karen Silver) ~ fine silver beads and components handmade by the Karen Hill Tribe silversmiths in Thailand. You can find out more about Hill Tribe Silver here.

Karat (kt) ~ Karat is the measure of the fineness of gold. 24kt is 100% pure gold, 18kt is 75% pure gold, 14kt gold is 58% pure gold and 10kt is 42% pure gold; the remaining balances of these being alloy. 14kt is the standard fineness for most jewelry in the United States. For more information about jewelry metals, see the
Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

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L

Lead-free Pewter (aka: Culinary Grade Pewter) ~ describes pewter that meets the stringent FDA standard of less than .05% (or 500 parts per million) lead content in pewter in contact with food. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Lip Shell (Mother of Pearl or MOP) ~ This is the hard, pearly layer of certain marine shells. It is the name given to a blend of minerals that oysters and other mollusks secrete and deposit inside their shells, coating and protecting their bodies from parasites and foreign objects. Pearls grow when mother of pearl build these layers around an object that's inserted in the shell by nature or man. White Mother of Pearl is irridescent and comes from the hard internal layer of the sea mollusk that produces pearls. Golden Lip Shell is found mostly around countries such as Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines and ranges in color from yellow-gold to white. Black Lip Shell has a light to dark gray shell background and pronounced pink/green irridescence.

Lobster Clasp ~ a jewelry fastener that resembles the claw of a lobster and has a spring that keeps the arm of the clasp closed. You can find a guide to clasp styles here.

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M

Matte ~ a dull, satin finish

Matinee-length Neklace ~ a necklace that is 30-35 inches in length

Memory Wire ~ metal wire, usually stainless steel, that is coiled into various sizes and will retain its shape

Miracle Bead ~ A miracle bead is a lucite bead with a mirror coating, a layer of color and then several layers of clear coating. Light passes through the layers and reflects off the mirror giving the bead a miraculous illusion of depth.

Mother of Pearl (MOP)(Lip Shell) ~ This is the hard, pearly layer of certain marine shells. It is the name given to a blend of minerals that oysters and other mollusks secrete and deposit inside their shells, coating and protecting their bodies from parasites and foreign objects. Pearls grow when mother of pearl build these layers around an object that's inserted in the shell by nature or man. White Mother of Pearl is irridescent and comes from the hard internal layer of the sea mollusk that produces pearls. Golden Lip Shell is found mostly around countries such as Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines and ranges in color from yellow-gold to white. Black Lip Shell has a light to dark gray shell background and pronounced pink/green irridescence.

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N

Necklace ~ A necklace is a piece of jewelry worn about the neck. You can see the various necklace styles available from Designs by Debi here.

Nickel ~ Nickel Silver is not silver at all. It is made of an alloy containing mostly nickel, zinc and copper. It resembles sterling silver in color, with a darker gray tone, but does not contain any silver. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Niobium ~ These items are made of a hypo-allergenic metal first engineered to protect space vehicles. After manufacturing into the desired shape, such as ear wires, the niobium which is naturally gray in color is anodized to create six signature colors. Which of the six colors results depends on how much electric current runs through the piece. Most people who are metal-sensitive can comfortably wear niobium. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

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O

Opera-length Necklace ~ a necklace that is 28-32 inches in length

Oxidation ~ darkening or other color changes of metal either as a result of tarnish or done deliberately in the design process to darken areas of a design

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P

Pearls ~ dense, usually lustrous gemstones formed of concentric layers of nacre within the shell of mollusks (oysters or clams). Pearls are the only gemstones that form inside a living creature and they come in various shapes and colors. You can learn more about pearls in the Pearl Guide in the Reference Center.

Pendant ~ focal bead or component suspended from a chain, cord or other stringing material

Personalized Keepsake Bracelet ~These bracelets are referred to in many ways...name bracelets, birthstone bracelets, brag bracelets, mother's bracelets, grandmother's bracelets. Designs by Debi Personalized Keepsake Bracelets consist of names spelled out in sterling silver letter blocks, Swarovski® Crystal birthstones and various styles of sterling silver beads and charms. You can find them here.

Pet Memorial Bracelet (Rainbow Bridge Pet Memorial Bracelet™) ~ The Rainbow Bridge Pet Memorial Bracelets™ are exclusive Designs by Debi products. I designed them especially for those who have lost a beloved pet. They come in 2 designs, both featuring your pet's name in sterling silver letter blocks; a sterling silver paw charm dangling at the end of his/her name; a sterling silver heart-shaped toggle clasp and a sterling silver heart-shaped frame charm with openings on both sides for you to add pictures of your pet. You can find them here.

Pewter (see also Culinary Grade Pewter) ~ an alloy made mostly of tin with varying amounts of lead, antimony, copper, silver, etc.; avaialable in genuine and lead-free varieties; today manufacturers are required to make lead-free pewter. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Platinum ~ a naturally-occurring, rare, silvery-white, malleable metal resistant to wear, tarnish and corrosion. For more information about jewelry metals, see the
Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Princess-length Necklace ~ a necklace that is 18 inches in length

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Q

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R

Rainbow Bridge Pet Memorial Bracelet™ ~The Rainbow Bridge Pet Memorial Bracelets™ are exclusive Designs by Debi products. I designed them especially for those who have lost a beloved pet. They come in 2 designs, both featuring your pet's name in sterling silver letter blocks; a sterling silver paw charm dangling at the end of his/her name; a sterling silver heart-shaped toggle clasp and a sterling silver heart-shaped frame charm with openings on both sides for you to add pictures of your pet. You can find them here.

Remember 9/11 Memorial Bracelets™ ~The Remember 9/11 Memorial Bracelets™ are exclusive Designs by Debi products. I designed them as a heartfelt tribute to those who lost their lives on September 11th. They come in personalized and non-personalized designs featuring sterling silver letter or flag blocks, beads and heart toggle clasp; red, crystal and blue Swarovski crystals; fiber-optic flag beads and a sterling silver 'Remember' Twin Towers charm. You can find them here.

Rhodium ~ a naturally-occurring, rare, hard, silvery-white metal of the platinum group commonly used in the jewelry industry to coat sterling silver, white gold and platinum to give them a reflective white surface. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Rope Necklace ~ a very long necklace that is 40-45 inches in length, sometimes longer

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S

Saltwater Pearls ~ grown in oysters that live in the ocean. There is only one pearl grown in each oyster and the oysters are sensitive to the process making it difficult and costly. So saltwater pearls are much more expensive than freshwater pearls. Saltwater pearls are commonly producued in Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Australia, Tahiti and Japan. The three most common types of salwater pearls are Akoya Pearls, South Sea Pearls and Tahitian Pearls. You can learn more about pearls in the Pearl Guide in the Reference Center.

Seed Beads ~ very small beads made from sections of glass tubes that are then tumbled and polished

Shiana Silver ~ a type of Hill Tribe Silver. It is handcrafted of 99.99% pure silver in small batches by the Karen Hill Tribe silversmiths in Thailand. You can find out more about Hill Tribe and Shiana silver here.

Silver ~ There are many varieties of silver. Unless it is marked sterling, fine, .925 or .999, the silver contains other alloys and may not even be silver at all. See also Bali Silver, Fine Silver, Karen Hill Tribe Silver, Shiana Silver, Silver Plated and Sterling Silver. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Silver Plated ~ Items designated as silver plated have an industry standard of 0.15 to 0.25 mils thickness of sterling silver electroplated to the surface of the base metal. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Soldering/Soldered ~ Soldering is a method of joining metal parts using a filer material called solder which is melted, applied to the joint then allowed to cool.

Spacer Bar ~ a thin piece of metal with holes inserted when beads are strung to hold beads in a fixed arrangement of parallel strands

Split Ring ~ looks like a key ring and comes in many sizes and shapes. Split rings are a more secure alternative to open jump rings.

Spring Ring Clasp ~ A circular clasp that has a trigger used to pull back a portion of the circle and allow insertion of the closure piece on the other end of the strand. You can find a guide to clasp styles here.

SRA ~ SRA stands for Self-Representing Artist. You can find more important information about this here.

SRAJD ~ SRAJD stands for Self-Representing Artist Jewelry Designer. You can find more important information about this here.

Stainless Steel ~ a generic term for grades of steel alloyed with chromium and other metals to be virtually immune to corrosion. Stainless steel can also contain nickel, molybdenum, titanium, niobium and other elements. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Sterling Silver ~ Sterling silver is an alloy consisting of no less than 92.5% silver and 7.5% of some other metal, usually copper. These proportions are fixed by law; in the USA and Bali the remaining 7.5% MUST be copper. However, in silver from other sources, the other metal contents are not restricted to copper and could include pewter, nickel and others. Copper is added to make the alloy less prone to breakage and scratching; but it is also responsible for the tarnishing or discoloring that commonly occurs with silver. Sterling silver is about twice as strong as pure silver. Its color will patina over time giving it an antiqued look. Sterling Silver pieces are often stamped "925." For more information about jewelry metals, see the
Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Support Your Soldier Bracelet™ ~ These are a wonderful, comforting show of support for those with loved ones in the military. They are done in red, white and blue; personalized with your soldier's name in sterling silver letter blocks ; and include 2 charms...one for the branch of service and a ribbon charm, either yellow or yellow with a flag. The bracelet is available in 2 designs and an optional "In Memory" dangle charm is available as well. You can find them here.

Surgical Steel ~ a type of stainlees steel used in medical applications; termed such because it is easy to clean and sterilize, strong and virtually immune to corrosion. It also can contain nickel, molybdenum, titanium, niobium and other elements. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Swarovski® Crystal (CRYSTALLIZED™ - Swarovski Elements) ~ Swarovski® Crystal is made in Austria and is considered to be the finest in the world. CRYSTALLIZED™ - Swarovski Elements is the brand name for all loose crystal elements made by Swarovski®, the world's leading producer of precision-cut crystal. You can find much more information about Swarovski Crystal in the Reference Center.

Swarovski® Crystal Pearls ~ are made of an Austrian crystal center with multiple layers of highly luminous pearlescence and are equivalent in weight to natural pearls. You can find much more information about Swarovski Crystal in the Reference Center.

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T

Tarnish ~ the oxidation or darkening that occurs when sterling silver interacts with gases in the air, moisture and humidity. Tarnish usually begins as a golden-type hue then turns black. Sterling silver is very susceptible to tarnish.

Thai Karen Silver (also known as Karen Hill Tribe Silver or Hill Tribes Silver) ~ fine silver beads and components handmade by the Karen Hill Tribe silversmiths in Thailand. You can find out more about Hill Tribe Silver here.

TierraCast® ~ high-quality beads and findings made of a lead-free pewter base electroplated with fine silver, 22kt gold, copper or rhodium. For more information about jewelry metals, see the Handmade Jewelry Metals Guide.

Toggle Clasp ~ also called a bar and ring clasp, is a jewelry fastener in which the bar is inserted in the ring to fasten the bracelket or necklace. You can find a guide to clasp styles here.

Trunk Show ~ a show at a retail boutique or other business location where a designer sets up and sells their jewelry for a short amount of time, usually a few hours, during the business work day

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U

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V

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W

Wedding Cake Beads ~ made famous in Venice, these lampwork beads typically look like little wedding cakes with icing of swirls, dots, flowers and aventurine (consisting of bits of copper) to add a shimmery effect

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X

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Y

Y-Necklace ~ a necklace, usually a single strand, that has some kind of focal drop that hangs down from the center. You can see the various necklace styles available from Designs by Debi here.

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Z

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