Leeleeko Jewelry Frequently Asked Questions


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Frequently Asked Questions       

Don't see an answer to your question?  Contact us.


What does Leeleeko mean?

"I am often asked where the name Leeleeko came from and what it means.  Many people think it sounds Hawaiian.  The truth is that Leeleeko was a childhood nickname of mine use by one of my favorite aunts.  My nickname was Lilly which my Greek relatives pronounced as Leelee.  My aunt added the "ko" to this giving it a Greek sounding ending.  When I was looking for a business name that would be uniquely my own, Leeleeko was what I chose."  Elaine


Shopping on Our Site

My browser says your site is not secure.  What does this mean? 
Sites need to be secure if they ask users for information, use pop-ups or place tracking cookies on your system.  We do not use cookies or pop-ups.  All purchases are processed through PayPal a secure site.  You are never asked for personal information through our website. When you click an add to cart button you are redirected to the PayPal site to process your order. We never share your information.

I don't have a PayPal account can I still make a purchase?
Yes you can!  When you go through check out on the PayPal site you will be asked if you have a PayPal account if the answer is no, you will then be directed to enter your credit card information.

What are your shipping and return policies?  See our policies page.

Do you ship outside the U.S. and Canada? Yes we do.  Click here for more info.

Can I order by phone using my credit card? 
We do not accept credit cards over the phone.  Email us with your request and we can email a PayPal invoice to you, which is payable upon receipt.  You do not need to have a PayPal account, they will process your credit card. 

What credit cards do you accept?
PayPal accepts American Express, Discover, Master Card and Visa.

Help, I Am Having Trouble Ordering Online
If you are having trouble ordering online please contact us.

Where are the prices and "add to cart" buttons?
Just click on the jewelry images on our site and you will be redirected to a page with an larger image, detailed description, price and "add to cart" button.



Our Products

Where are your items made and who makes them?
Our jewelry, jewelry accessories and gemstone cabochons are made in San Diego, CA (actually San Marcos in San Diego County).  All jewelry (and accessories), dichroic glass cabochons and most of the gemstone cabochons are made by Elaine Griveas.  The Osmena pearl cabochons and Paua shell cabochons were made for Leeleeko Jewelry in the Philippines. We do use ready made beads and findings to create some jewelry items, but the end product is an original design handcrafted by Elaine.

Why can't I find donut bails and brooch enhancers like yours anywhere else?
Our donut bails and no-tilt brooch enhancers are exclusively made by us.  They are Elaine Griveas' original designs and she hand makes each one.  We also sell these items wholesale, so you may see other jewelers offering them for sale or using them on their jewelry.

Can I order more than one of the same item?
Most of the pieces shown on our site are one-of-a-kind. Which means there is only one of that item, so please do not order more than one. Exceptions are the pendant accessories and donut bails which can be ordered in any quantity, occasionally more than one of a certain type of pendant such as the orthoceras fossil pendants may be available.

How can I find the right length or size bracelet for myself or for a gift? 
Go to
Leeleeko Jewelry & Measurements for an explanation of how our jewelry is measured and how to find the correct size necklace, bracelet, pendant or earrings.

I absolutely love a piece of jewelry on your site, but it's the wrong size. Can it be adjusted?
It may be possible to lengthen or shorten an item but not always.  Contact us with your specific request, most adjustments are free of charge.

How do I clean and care for my jewelry?
See our How to Clean and Care for Your Jewelry page.



Jewelry Terms

What is a gemstone
A gemstone is a stone used for personal adornment that is beautiful, durable, and stable. Beauty is based on color, luster, transparency, or cutting and shaping with lapidary techniques. Durability is the resistance to damage and is dependent on hardness and tenacity. Tenacity is the resistance to bending and breaking, while hardness measures the resistance to scratching. Stability refers to the gem's ability to retain color in spite of heat, light, or chemical changes.

What is a semi-precious gemstone?
The two terms precious and semi-precious are not widely used these days. The designation began in part because diamond, ruby, sapphire and emerald were taxed at a higher rate than other gemstones. Many people think semi-precious indicates a gem of lesser value and hardness, which is untrue, and the main reason why the term semi-precious is no longer widely used.

What is sterling silver?
ilver, even fully work-hardened, gradually re-crystallizes and softens at room temperature.  Alloys are added to make it harder, stronger, and less susceptible to scratching and marring.  Sterling silver (or 925 silver) is the best copper-silver alloy and is 92.5% silver and 7.5% copper.  Some people claim sterling silver earrings are hypo-allergenic, it depends on the allergy.  Most people have a problem with nickel and sterling would not bother them.  If you have a problem with copper you may not be able to wear them.  If you find that sterling silver bothers your ears you may have to stick to gold or titanium.

What is 14k gold filled?
The term gold filled means that a layer of gold has been applied to a base metal. This layer is many times thicker than gold plate. It is more economical than solid gold but will not wear away or tarnish like gold plate.

What is fine silver?
Fine silver is 99.9% silver, while sterling is 92.5%.

What is vermeil gold?
Vermeil gold is a 22k layer of gold applied to sterling silver.  It is often used on Bali beads & clasps.

What is PMC?
Precious metal clay or PMC is silver or gold that can be shaped and sculpted like clay and then fired in a kiln.  The firing process burns away the additives which make the metal pliable leaving only the metal. What is left is a very pure form of the metal. In the case of silver, it results in fine silver which is purer than sterling.  Fine silver is 99.9% silver, while sterling is 92.5%.

What is a bail?
A bail is the part of a pendant that a chain, slide or beaded necklace passes through.

Malachite teardrop shaped cabochonWhat is a cabochon?
A cabochon is usually* a shaped and polished gemstone which is used for jewelry other than a faceted stone or a bead. Cabochons have one smooth curved or domed surface and a flat back. They come in a large variety of shapes, most commonly round or oval. They can also be teardrop, rectangular, freeform, etc.
*Although the term cabochon is used most often when referring to a gemstone, it is actually a reference to shape not the material it is made from. and can also be used for other materials such as glass or shell.

What does faceted mean?
A faceted gemstone that has a number of flat surfaces or planes as opposed to the one smooth surface of a cabochon. This can refer to other materials such as crystal glass.

What is the difference between wirework and wire wrapped jewelry ?
Wirework and wire wrapped jewelry are both created using wire. Wire wrapping is a type of wirework the terms are sometimes used interchangeably.  Wire wrapped jewelry is created only with wire and gemstones are held in place by the wire itself, there is no solder or glue used in the process. There are some types of wirework which do use solder, however at present Leeleeko Jewelry does not use this technique.  Recently with dichroic glass it has become popular for a channel or groove to be made along the edge of a glass cabochon for a wire to be inserted.  This technique was developed for people who don't know how to wire wrap.  If you know how to wire wrap no groove is needed and our jewelry is never made using a groove.

What is fabricated metal jewelry or metal smithing?
Fabricated metal jewelry covers a lot of territory.  There are so many different types of techniques we can't begin to tell you about all of them.  On our site we use the terms for our sterling silver jewelry which is creating using solder and silver sheet as opposed to our wire wrapped jewelry.

What is the difference between pearl and mother of pearl?  Click here for information about pearls.



How Our Jewelry is Made

Is all the jewelry made by Elaine or does she have helpers?
All the jewelry is made by Elaine with the exception of the gemstone cabochons. Elaine's husband Bill makes some of the cabs. On occasion we may use cabochons made by others in our jewelry. Elaine makes all the dichroic fused glass pieces, does all the wire wrapping and strings all the beads. The Osmena pearl cabochons and Paua cabochons are made for Leeleeko Jewelry overseas.

I am just learning wire working is there a less expensive material other than silver to practice with?
You can practice with copper or brass wire, till you are more sure of yourself.

What gauge and hardness of wire do you use for wire working?
I use dead soft or half hard wire for my pieces. Generally if a piece has a lot of curlicues it is dead soft wire as I mainly manipulate the wire with my hands and fingers.  I use a variety of gauges from 18 to 22, most commonly 20 to 21 gauge.


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