Originally Posted by furo
Solid brass. It can be quite shiny depending on the mix and polish/coating used during processing. Here is a solid brass trumpet for comparison:
Definitley seconded - just brass can be a highly lustrous light gold and is very pretty when polished properly. Of course if it isn't lacquered it'll tarnish over time but will age/patinate nicely and can be polished where as lacquered brass tends to look horrid IMHO, plasticy when new and and ages gracelessly.
This is one of our buckles as another example, solid brass thats been polished, no coating/plating etc at all