Religious Cross Jewelry

Wearing religious cross jewelry can be an excellent way to express one's faith with an outward symbol, to remind one's self of personal beliefs, and to remain faithful to one's creeds and spiritual commitments. While many people may think of gold religious jewelry, for example, as gaudy or tacky, there are actually many beautiful and meaningful pieces to suit any person's taste and style. Lots of these items can be found in traditional jewelry stores or online, especially on websites dedicated entirely to religious ornaments. These ornaments make excellent gifts for family and friends, particularly at special times like confirmation and baptism; they can communicate wishes of peace and blessing, give hope in difficult times, and help to guide one along the spiritual journey.

Perhaps the most popular item in this category is religious cross jewelry, a symbol worn by Christians all over the world, as well as non-Christians who appreciate its beauty and style. The cross is probably the most important symbol in the Christian faith, as it represents Jesus Christ's sacrificial death on a cross as God's communication of his love for the world. The cross also symbolizes the Christian's commitment to following the way of Jesus: "One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow me" (Mark 10:21). Wearing the sign of the cross is a way to keep one's mind on the things that really matter and to remember that the way of the Christian life is sacrificial love. Sometimes, wearing a tangible, physical symbol of one's religion, like a cross or a star, can make the invisible, spiritual aspects of faith feel a little more sure and accessible; symbols are powerful, even when they are dangling from a fashionable anklet or earring.

Religious cross jewelry can be found in many different styles and varieties, including crucifixes, Byzantine, Celtic, and plain crosses. Crucifixes are unique because they show the dying body of Jesus stretched out on the instrument of his death, while most crosses only serve as symbols rather than actual depictions. Byzantine, Roman, and Celtic crosses have unique and lovely designs and are very popular items. Many persons prefer to wear plain jewelry with little ornamentation, and there are plenty of options out there for them; men might especially appreciate a pewter cross on a rope necklace. Crosses are made from many different materials including gold, silver, wood, crystal, and porcelain and can feature beautiful etchings, religious sayings such as prayers and creeds, and be accented with gemstones.

Crosses are popular features for earrings, a gift that women and girls are sure to appreciate. They also make lovely charm bracelets, brooches, prayer rings, and rosaries. Religious cross jewelry has expanded tremendously in its options, offering trendy beaded crosses, sophisticated and elegant rose gold and gemstone crosses, even crosses with pearls. Less ornamented crosses often include ancient Christian symbols such as the Chi- Ro or the Monogram of Christ (XP) with the Alpha and Omega letters. Sometimes crosses are also paired with doves (a symbol of the Holy Spirit), the crown of thorns, crucifixion nails, or the ancient fish symbol, Ichthus, which early Christians used to recognize one another during times of persecution.

Other examples of gold religious jewelry are confirmation, first communion, and baptism medals, Bible or Holy Spirit pendants, and symbols of saints and angels. Shoppers might find a Lord's Prayer ring, a sacred heart pendant, or a bracelet with an Ichthus symbol. Persons interested in the lives of the saints might enjoy items with pictures or symbols of patron saints such as St. Christopher or St. Patrick; these especially make good necklace pendants. Different saints can remind wearers of important spiritual characteristics like courage or unconditional love or tenacious commitment. One very beautiful item is a hand-painted porcelain medal depicting the face of Jesus, Mary, or other religious figures.

Christian symbols, however, are not the only ones included in gold religious jewelry options. Other popular items include the Jewish Star of David, the Mezuzah, and the Menorah. The Star of David is the most well known Jewish symbol, recognized by Jews and Christians alike. The Mezuzah, often featured as a necklace pendant, is an important aspect of Jewish culture resulting from God's command to the Jewish people to write his commands on the doorposts of their homes; in jewelry it is a symbol of the Torah. The Menorah, of course, is a feature of the religious season of Hanukkah, but also a well-known symbol of Judaism.

Gold religious jewelry continues to be popular, as it has been for thousands of years. Perhaps it remains a standard feature of ornamentation because it allows ordinary people to add a sense of the sacred to their daily lives--even their daily outfits. Just as clothes reveal the unique personality and values of a person, so does jewelry, especially when it holds spiritual significance. Religious jewelry, in all its various shapes and forms, remains a significant outward sign of an inward life, reminding its wearer of spiritual realities that can sometimes be forgotten in the hectic, busy dash through life so typical of contemporary persons. Religious cross jewelry can be a powerful reminder of love and sacrifice; key words like love, peace, hope, and faith inscribed on jewelry can help the wearer through a difficult time; and religious mementos like confirmation rings can be a wonderful way to remember special landmarks in one's life.

Silver Cross Jewelry

Quality sterling silver jewelry can be found online through many wholesale and retail stores that offer the latest in designer fashion accessories. From silver cross jewelry to customized pieces, the precious, white metal continues to fascinate young and old with its lustrous charm. The most affordable of all the precious metals, silver is known for its age old use and recurrent popularity among consumers. Silver tends to ride the crest of the trend wave throughout the centuries unlike the classic trend of yellow gold. The 20th century has seen a revival in its use and consumers of all ages enjoy wearing the precious metal in many forms and designs.

One of the current trends in designer items is fashion accessories that display the cross. Silver cross jewelry that presents the religious icon is not particularly due to an escalated interest in legitimate religious matters. It seems to be part of a gothic, satirical look at religion that is exposed by current designers. "That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ." (1 Peter 1:7) A fashion runway is likely to host at least one model during a fashion show that is wearing some form of the cross. Whether it is in beads, metal, wood or plastic, the icon is very likely to be found in either earrings or medallions. There are many shapes that are designed such as the Russian or Roman cross forms.

Runways are not the only place that cross fashion items are found. Television shows, Hollywood movies and other fashion stages can all be found host to someone sporting the cross in some form. The icon has been developed into a fashion symbol for the cultural elite as well as the sub cultural groups. The interesting twist to silver cross jewelry is that many who wear the symbol openly reject its meaning. Gone are the days that only religious people wore the symbol as a declaration of faith and practice. Secular designers have perhaps added a cynical note to the symbol by encouraging its popularity among a largely irreligious consumer group.

There are, of course, practical reasons for the appeal of white metal accessories no matter the particular shape or figure it offers. Quality sterling silver jewelry is less expensive that the other precious metals and offers a purchase opportunity for just about anyone. Price ranges can vary greatly depending on the silversmithing procedures and any inlaid or stone settings that are added. Mass produced pieces tend to be cheaper because of the volume sold to consumers and the cost incurred at production. Customized pieces are generally more expensive because they are produced by artisans and silversmiths who make unique items that are not reproduced.

When a consumer purchases a customized piece of jewelry, he or she can sometimes even receive a certificate of authenticity that the product is the only one of its kind. Many buyers who appreciate the uniqueness of handmade pieces are willing to pay more for these types of specialty items. Items made from this precious metal are still relatively cheaper than other metals such as platinum or gold. Another practical reason for elevated consumer interest, is the fact that this metal is lighter than gold. This metal weighs about half as much as yellow or white gold. Silver is also more malleable than gold which has allowed more creativity in design. For centuries artisans all over the world have used it to create quality sterling silver jewelry that reflects the various cultural overtones of each generation. Silversmiths can easily work with it and can more easily include stones and gems since it is softer.

This metal is also favorably worn because its qualities tends to stay less tarnished with wear. While some plated metals may tarnish with use, this metal tends to stay brighter when exposed to friction by daily use. That is why the metal gets easily tarnished when sitting in a box for years. There is one thing to always check before purchasing any piece of silver cross jewelry or other design. Make sure that the metal in any piece does not contain other metal properties such as nickel. Nickel overlaid with silver will corrode very easily and will not prove to be an item to keep for generations. Only quality sterling silver jewelry that is 925 grade should be considered for purchase.

A 925 grade contains some copper which strengthens the soft qualities of the metal while not lessening the superior quality of the metal. This combination is 75 parts copper and 925 parts silver and is considered the best form of the metal for fashion accessories such as rings, necklaces, bracelets, cuff links, pins, and watches. Before purchasing any item, inquire as to the sterling quality of the piece that should be backed by a guarantee. This will insure that any purchase is a piece of quality jewelry that can be worn and enjoyed for a lifetime. Heirloom pieces can be passed down for generations while still retaining the fine look and wearability that something like silver cross jewelry can provide. There are many online sources that offer extensive selections of fine pieces that will fit everyone's budget. Check out the prices, quality, designs and guarantees for the best piece to add to a personal, fashion collection.

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