Showing posts with label birthstone. Show all posts
Showing posts with label birthstone. Show all posts

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Aquamarines, Emeralds, and Labradorite

March is the month for aquamarines although anytime is a good time for aquamarines!  Who doesn't love them?  From pale green to turquoise to strong blue, aquamarines are just luscious - and they go so well with so many other gemstones.  Above is a simple aquamarine bracelet with cultured freshwater pearls.  The smaller aquamarine nuggets are a gorgeous shade of blue with great faceting.
Below, aquamarine nuggets and rondelles are paired with a pretty deeper green peridot for a striking result.  The intricate braided-look sterling silver chain adds to the bracelet's complexity, and a single pendant-like charms has a faceted, bezel-set peridot in a pretty star or flower-like shape. 
I always love emeralds (I'm a May baby so I'm fortunate to have the emerald as my birthstone). Two views of the same emerald bracelet, below show how wonderful emeralds look with sterling silver.  There are two strands of emeralds, large and small, and little Thai Karen Hill Tribes sterling flower charms hang at intervals along the bracelet.

Labradorite with its blue and blue-green flash is amazing.  The photos here really don't show the great flsh of the main focal nugget, but it is great! The other labradorite stones all have flash as well.  And the toggle clasp is a sterling silver dragonfly!

Finally, a simple citrine necklace has a pretty dangle with carved, nugget, and gem-quality citrines hanging from the main strand.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Back from Africa!

Mozambique, Swaziland, and South Africa - it's been a real treat to go there again - and to wonderful Swaziland with its friendly people and beautiful land for the first time. I will have some pictures later.
But now it's time to get back to work!  I'm slow getting back to things - it must be the change of climate, going from 90 something degrees to snow (hurrah!) which is on the ground now. Just two garnet bracelets to celebrate the month of January.

Lovely large flat, faceted garnets are in both these sterling silver and garnet bracelets. The top garnet bracelet  with its beaded heart toggle would be a great Valentine's Day gift!
Below, a garnet bracelet with two strands of marquise, rondelles, nuggets and a charm and lampwork beads. Note the swirling flowered sterling toggle clasp.
And here's hoping for more beautiful snow!

Monday, September 10, 2007

The Season of Sapphires

The sapphire is the September birthstone (although many sources will list lapis as an alternate). It is a very popular precious gemstone probably since a large percentage of people say that their favourite colour is blue. However, the sapphire, although know for its beautiful blue, comes in many, many other colours.
The sapphire is a corundum (like the ruby!), made of aluminum oxide, and created by heat and pressure deep within the earth. Other elements are responsible for the colours of sapphires such as iron and chrome. There are pink sapphires, green siapphires, and I have quite a few yellow sapphires in my own stock as well as some white sapphires. When corumdum is red, it is called a ruby. So is a ruby a sapphire? Well, yes, in a manner of speaking. It is the red colour caused by an element in the sapphire that makes a ruby, a ruby!

Sri Lanka, once known as Ceylon, was one of the earliest places to mine sapphires successfully. Sapphires are also found in Burma, Thailand, Cambodia and Brazil. Today the largest suppliers of sapphires are Australia and Africa.
Many legends have grown up around the mysterious blue of the sapphire. The sapphire gemstone has been believed to represent wisdom - and even to endow one with wisdom if worn constantly. Thought of as a "mind-opening" gemstone, it is thought to prevent jealousy and bring truth and health to the wearer. Perhaps this is why in ancient times it was believed to be an antidote to poison.
The first two pictures represent jewelry on the Cluny Grey Jewelry website. The bracelet is made of rather large (9mm-10mm) faceted sapphire rondelles and - yes! I added lampwork beads to a sapphire bracelet! These are good borosilicate lampwork beads that have beautiful shades of sapphire in them, and then a faint glimmer of green and a hint of a dark red. They are perfect for sapphires. See the bracelet on the Sapphire Bracelets page of our website.
The earrings are made of faceted sapphire rondelles and sterling added to give them a slightly "Moroccan" look. They are on the Sapphire Earrings page.
The last bracelet is a combination of two favourite gemstones I recently got in. The pink Peruvian opals are some of the most glowing and beautiful I've ever had although they are not very large. The pink colour is wonderful. And the aquamarine gemstones I just got in from Thailand are beautiful. I decided to combine the two beauties just for fun!
Otherwise, custom orders are keeping me busy. I try to make one or two new jewelry pieces a week to put on the website to keep it fresh. So keep looking, you may find your heart's desire (and a great piece of jewelry to wear when you're with him!)

Friday, August 31, 2007

Lariat Necklaces

I like to wear lariat necklaces myself, so it's a bit odd that I don't make them that often or make that many. I got started on these simply because I happened to catch a glimpse of one of the new Swarovski crystal rings as I was looking for some other beads. The ring was in one of my favorite colours - Copper - so I couldn't resist seeing what I could do with it. I decided not to do that much. I used 14 karat goldfilled chain and wire and attached the Swarovski crystal ring to one end, and a large copper bicone to the other with a few little bead accents. I put a Swarovski butterfly in copper to one side of the ring - and I'm in love with this lariat necklace.
Another of my favorite Swarovski colours is blue Montana and since to me it seems to be much more the colour of a real sapphire than Swarovski's actual sapphire colour, I used the Montana crystals to make a lariat that would also work as a birthstone necklace for September. This necklace is outstanding because of the wonderful Karen Hill Tribes chain with little links holding together huge hammered rounds and large flower shaped sterling. This is a rather long lariat necklace; one thing I like about it is that you can wear the back of it facing front during the day when you're at the office, then when you're ready to go out, you just turn it around and you have tons of sparkle! The large Swarovski crystals fit through the hoop, but I also added an almost indiscernible little ring clasp for those who may wear it out dancing.
Finally, a green aventurine lariat necklace made of aventurine disks, faceted olives, and carved flower beads. Here the loop that the other side goes through is made of the faceted olives, and because of the size of the loop, the other side can be looped through more than once to shorten the remainder.
All of these lariat necklaces can be found on the Lariat Necklaces page of the Cluny Grey website.