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Alternatively, jewellery has been used as a currency or trade good Jewellery can also symbolise group membership (as in the case, of the Christian crucifix or the Jewish Star of David) or status (as in the case of chains of office, or the Western practice of married people wearing wedding rings).Wearing of amulets and devotional medals to provide protection or ward off evil is common in some cultures.Beading, or beadwork, is also very popular in many African and indigenous North American cultures.Silversmiths, goldsmiths, and lapidaries methods include forging, casting, soldering or welding, cutting, carving and "cold-joining" (using adhesives, staples and rivets to assemble parts).
Higher purity levels are less common with alloys at 22 K (91.6% pure gold), and 24 K (99.9% pure gold) being considered too soft for jewellery use in America and Europe.
Another use of seed beads is an embroidery technique where seed beads are sewn onto fabric backings to create broad collar neck pieces and beaded bracelets.
Bead embroidery, a popular type of handwork during the Victorian era, is enjoying a renaissance in modern jewellery making.
The silver used in jewellery is usually sterling silver, or 92.5% fine silver.
In costume jewellery, stainless steel findings are sometimes used.