Wearing gold jewelry, particularly high quality and relatively affordable 14K Italy gold piece, is an excellent choice to beautify your outfit. While not as pure as 24K gold, it is real stuff and standard for gold jewelry distinguished by its remarkably bright yellow color.
Basically, the biggest problem is to determine is 14K Italy gold chain real or fake. Its fineness is marked with 14K Italy, or 585, and the absence of these marks means that you have a fake piece of jewelry. Unfortunately, you can also find pieces with forged marks, so it is crucial to be careful and test their authenticity.
14K Italy Marking’s Meaning
When you have a golden chain marked with 14K, you should be aware that only 14 out of 24 parts of metal used to make the chain are gold. Other parts are made of metal alloys. Keep in mind that it doesn’t mean the chain is fake, only that its quality depends on the percentage of gold it contains.
As you have probably known, gold jewelry is marked 14K, 18K, 20K, or 22K, representing its purity. You can also find 8K, 10K, and 12K gold, but those are of lesser quality. In most countries, 8K and 10K are not considered gold and don’t have markings.
Pure gold marked with 24K is rare and very expensive. It is also challenging to process due to its softness. In fact, it is necessary to mix this pure metal with others to make it more effortlessly shape.
As for the fineness markings, 14 parts gold indicates that 58.5% of the chain is made of gold. Therefore, you can sometimes notice a 585 stamp on jewelry made in Europe, instead of 14K that the US standard.
Italians are an exception since they usually use the 14K Italy marking. The Italian part of the marking will show you that the gold comes from this country, and the chain made of it is among the highest quality gold jewelry you can find.
Remember that it is the same with other gold types. For instance, you can see a 750 mark on the European gold, meaning that you look at an 18K gold chain. These 18 parts of gold that it contains indicate that there is 75% of gold in that piece. However, the Italian market usually offers 14K gold, while 18K is not such common.
Knowing the distinctive features of this gold type will help you recognize it more quickly. Like any other gold, 14K Italy is yellow, but its color is more vibrant than most other gold-type shades. However, you can notice that it is noticeably paler than 24K gold.
Remember that the color of various 14K gold chains can vary slightly because of different metal alloys added during the process. The curiosity is that 14K Italy is a lot harder than 18K and 24K gold.
Reasons Why 14K Italian Gold Chain Is High-praised
Italian jewelers make probably the most beautiful gold chains and other jewelry pieces worldwide since they have perfected jewelry-making techniques over centuries. Nowadays, their unique design is well known worldwide.
The Italian tradition of gold making started during Roman times but used techniques dated back to the Ancient Etruscans. Romans gave their best to refine them during the Middle Ages.
Even modern jewelers practice similar ways to keep the quality and tradition of Italian gold jewelry. Modern design often tends to combine traditional characteristics with contemporary styles. Therefore, the term 14K Italy gold is still a synonym of design quality and precise technique.
Keep in mind that 14K Italy gold is not much different than gold coming from any other place. The secret of Italian jewelry quality, especially chains, is in jewelry-making techniques.
The 14K Italy gold price can significantly vary, depending on the market and each state’s economy, taxes, regulations, market offers, and other conditions. The US government has determined a special import tax on meaningful Italian jewelry that doesn’t apply to gold coming from other countries.
As a result, Italian gold is considerably more expensive in the US compared to other gold jewelry. However, the final price of Italian gold is not fixed but depends on where you buy it.
Its price is based on the weight in most cases and is approximately $1,100 per ounce ($35.5 per gram). Since an average gold chain weighs from 0.105 to 1.7 ounces (3 – 50 g), you can quickly calculate the final price.
Differentiate Real 14K Italy Gold Chain from Fake
Being the most common gold, 14K is also the most counterfeited type. Therefore, you can often find 585 and 14K Italy marks imprinted on a jewelry chain with no gold in it. Let’s see how to notice the fraud.
1. Dubious price
Be aware that a ridiculously low price is the first warning that the chain is probably fake. On the other hand, a bit wiser merchants will ask for a significant amount of money to make the jewelry they sell look more authentic.
In most cases, cheaper pieces available online or in shady markets are fake. The only way to avoid such fraud is to buy jewelry from reputable stores.
2. Gold-filled jewelry
Another thing you should look out for are pieces of jewelry made of base metal with a thin gold layer on the surface. In some cases, that gold coat is 24K, but it won’t affect the final price.
A particular problem is gold-filled jewelry made of base metal and coated with 10K and 12K gold. For instance, a 12K gold layer over the base metal means that the piece only contains 5% of gold.
The calculation is precise. The gold coat makes only 10% of the jewelry piece. If you know that 12K is only 50% of pure 24K gold, this 10% of 50% makes the gold-filled jewelry piece contains only 5% pure gold. With a bit of Math, you can quickly calculate the same for 14K gold.
Usual markings on such pieces are 1/20th GF, 1/20th 12K GF, or 1/20 12K Gold Filled. The problem is that counterfeiters often remove these marks and replace them with higher fineness marks.
Remember that 14K Italy gold neither rust nor change color over time. If you notice black or green spots on the chain, or the color peels off, it is a sure sign that this particular piece of jewelry is fake.
If your jewelry has a coin-like smell, it means that the gold is not genuine. Unlike other metals, noble metals like gold don’t have any scent.
Real gold has quite a density and is heavy, while fake gold is more lightweight. However, it is not a definite sign since some hollow pieces of jewelry can also be light. The best option is to get it checked.
For this method, you need a non-glade ceramic plate. If gold jewelry leaves a black trace when gently rubbing it across the plate, you can be sure that it is not real gold. Take care not to damage the jewelry while checking it.
7. Bite method
This method sounds weird, but it works. Real 14K Italian gold will dent a bit after biting it, but fake gold won’t. Unfortunately, this method is not 100% trustworthy since the gold-plated and the gold-filled pieces will also dent. Plus, you can damage teeth if the piece is fake.
8. Magnet test
Gold is not magnetic, so that a magnet won’t attract it. This method is not highly reliable since 14K gold contains other metal alloys, and the magnet can attract them depending on their type. However, it can give you an excellent basis for further research.
9. Acid test
The most reliable way to test your 14K Italy gold chain is the acid test. You can buy an acid kit online and check your jewelry on your own, but a better option is to let an expert do it for you.
Almost every jewelry store has the equipment to do this test. The procedure is not complicated. A jeweler will sample it by scratching the chain over a testing stone and apply nitric acid to the scratch. In the end, it will be enough to estimate the jewelry after a chemical reaction.
14K Italy Gold Chain Advantages and Disadvantages
Having some base knowledge about 14K Italy gold jewelry can help you recognize its value and authenticity. Like any other product, the 14K Italy gold chain has its advantages and downsides. Let’s take a look.
- You will get a beautiful design at a reasonable price
- Thanks to the long tradition in jewelry making, 14K Italy gold jewelry is made with excellent precision
- The gold is of high quality
- This jewelry is more affordable than 18K pieces or those with higher fineness
- Due to high import taxes, this jewelry will be more expensive than similar pieces available on the market
- There are a lot of counterfeited pieces
In most cases, 14K Italy gold chain is probably the best option you can find, and wearing it will contribute to your style. Always look for the 14K Italy or 585 marks to make sure to get a genuine piece. Be careful since there are numerous counterfeited pieces of jewelry you don’t want to deal with.