Sinead Buckney

Frequently Asked Questions

Payments

As I am currently travelling, I recommend buying my pieces through my stockists. However, I do sell some items locally. I can accept Swift (International) bank transfers (preferred) and paypal payments, however can not presently accept credit card payments. Due to the continually changing exchange rates, I now list all of my prices in Australian Dollars. I can advise you of the price in your own currency.

Returns

Get in touch if you need to return anything and I will give you details of my Australian address.

Metals

Sterling Silver

Where I can I try to work with new alloys of silver that are tarnish resistant. Silver is the whitest of all the metals so has a great colour. It is a soft metal however, so expect to get a few dings and scratches in it – these can only be polished out by a jeweller. For silver I always prefer to use a bezel setting as it is the most durable and best suited for this softer metal. I don't recommend setting diamonds in silver – the ring will eventually wear down and you may lose the stone. See also the Guarentee page for detail about caring for your piece.

Gold

Purities
9ct
375 parts out of 1000 are gold so this isn't even half gold! A orange yellow colour – this is hard wearing due to the copper content but most modern alloys are just as hard in the higher carats.
14ct
585 parts out of 1000 are gold so this is at least half gold. Mainly popular in Europe and America (Also 10ct)
18ct
750 parts out of 1000 are gold so its three quarters pure. This has a strong yellow colour.
22ct
916 parts out of 1000 this is a great rich yellow colour but is best to use only as an accent as it is very soft.

See also the Hallmarks section below.

Colours
Rose
gold with a higher percentage of copper giving it a warm, antique style. Rose gold looks great with cognac diamonds and pale pink stones.
Yellow
I love the warm tones of high carat yellow gold with emeralds.
White
the alloys I use for white gold contain palladium (no nickel) so do not require Rhodium plating, the 9ct alloy is a soft grey white colour. White coloured metals are by far the best to use for setting diamonds as they don't reflect any colour into the stone.
Other
I have green gold too – a silvery grey yellow. Black gold is usually black rhodium plating. I have seen a chocolate gold I would love to get my hands on but so far have not found a supplier.

Palladium

This is a relatively new metal for the jewellery industry and belongs to the Platinum group of metals. This means it has great strength and a bright white colour – but at a similar price to 9ct gold and much lighter density than platinum. This metal comes as 950 parts almost pure alloy.

Platinum

The most precious of all metals, platinum is a great metal. It has superior whiteness (but still steel grey compared to silver, the whitest metal), the best durability, and supreme strength – if you want a fine but strong piece this is the metal to choose. It is about twice the density of gold so a small ring can have a lot of heft to it.

Titanium

Strong and non reactive – popular with guys! I can order rings in this metal but I don't have the facilities to weld it – the relatively low cost makes it easier to replace when it no longer fits.

Stainless steel

Anti allergy – I can provide earhooks in stainless steel if preferred.

Rhodium plating

This is the bright white finish that is used on all white gold in the high street shops. I am quite against using it as I find it highly deceptive – your ring that looked awesome 3 months ago has started to look a yellowish grey on the back of the band – this is because the plating has worn off – the only way to make it look like new again is to strip off the old plating and re-plate it. I believe in low maintenance jewellery so I prefer to use a higher quality white gold to start with.

Nickel

Through wearing base metal jewellery some people have developed allergies to nickel. This can make them sensitive to precious metals even, although high purity metals are usually no problem. None of my pieces contain nickel

Reactions

Some people have natural skin oils that react with the metal, particularly silver, turning it black. The new alloys of tarnish resistant silver should prevent this. If you have allergic reactions to jewellery, I would suggest trying to wear higher purity metals – especially for earrings. If this is still not suitable, try hypoallergenic metals such as stainless steel, titanium and aluminium. If you insist on wearing a piece you react to, such as a watch – I would suggest painting the places in contact with you skin with clear nail polish, it will wear off with time, but it creates a barrier between your skin and the metal.

Hallmarks

These are the hallmarks you see on work I have made in Australia,

My mark
Sinead Buckney
Metal purity mark Guild mark made in Australia Optional date mark, year made

Hallmarks in the UK are slightly different

 
Sterling Silver 9ct gold 18ct gold Platinum Palladium Made in Scotland

Sizing

The most reliable way to find out your ring size is to be measured by a jeweller. All high street shops will have the ability to do this. Alternatively, contact me and I can send you a plastic ring sizer. Please note, wide rings will feel tighter than narrow bands so try to test with bands similar to what you will buy. Comfort fitting (curved inside edges) make wider rings much easier to remove. Your fingers can puff up significantly while hot so best to try on a ring when you are cooler.

Change chains / lengths.

The standard necklace length I use is 42cm, if you have a smaller or larger neck, please request a different size. I can change the chain to a necklace if you prefer or vice versa, just get in touch.

Finishes

I do two main finishes on my work – highly polished (reflects everything) and matt. Matt is most popular with guys as it has a more industrial feel. It also shows up contrasting metal colours best. Both finishes will gradually lessen, the polished getting more scratched and the matt more shiny, but this is easily redone by a jeweller. Matt pieces can be restored with a green kitchen scourer.

Stones

Diamonds, Sapphires and Rubies are great stones for rings as they are durable (but not invincible!) Most other stones are fine for rings, you just have to be a little bit more careful.

Some stones that need to either be protected or worn with great care: Tanzinite, Opal, Kunzite, Emerald. Be careful even when storing these as even dust will scratch them! If you have a softer stone perhaps consider making it into a piece of jewellery that is more protected such as a pendant or earrings.

Diamonds

There is lots of information available online about diamond properties so I won't go into detail. It is worth keeping in mind that with the colour of a diamond, it is very difficult to discern any yellow tinge above a G colour. As for clarity, anything above a SI2 is difficult to see with the naked eye.

Also when buying stones, if it seems like too good a deal, it probably is – buy from people you trust. If a jeweller has a good reputation this is the most important thing for their business as the whole industry depends on trust. Even gemmologists can be caught out by the fast changing synthetic stone market.