Thursday, July 30, 2009
The Ruby is also considered to be the stone of the Zodiac sign of Capricorn, and is often given as a gift for the 40th anniversary.
The history of Ruby mining dates back more than 2,500 years. Rubies are found throughout the world and have been mined in most areas, but Burma is generally considered the area for obtaining the most valuable and highest quality rubies with the deepest red color. The most important deposits are found in Myanmar, which is near Mogok in Burma. Although many rubies are mined, only 1% of them is of gem quality.
As with other gemstones, rubies have metaphysical attributes thought to be connected with them. Two magical elements are associated with red rubies: fire and blood, and they imply warmth and life for mankind. The ruby is also considered by many to be the gemstone which signifies everlasting love. Ancient legends state that one should not make faces at a ruby in a museum since this will make it grow dull. And ancient rulers even thought that a ruby would darken when it sensed danger, only to return to its natural color when the danger had passed.
For healing purposes, rubies are said to be a general health protection and a help for backache and toenail problems.
The color is so rich and regal. What a lovely stone to have attached to your birthday! This lovely Georgian poem aptly describes this birthstone:
The gleaming Ruby should adorn,
All those who in July are born,
For thus they’ll be exempt and free,
From lover’s doubts and anxiety.
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
This contest is called Crystallized Swarovski Elements. Collectors of vintage jewelry have long appreciated the cut and brilliance of Swarovski crystals. Now, creators of contemporary jewelry can try creating their own Swarovski jewelry and have a chance at winning a $1000 gift certificate from Fire Mountain Gems and Beads.
The lovely necklace shown here is a past silver medal win by designer Dianne Baas. I love the way that she has combined glass beads and crystals in this pretty amber colored pendant necklace. It will be interesting to see what other designers come up with for this year's contest.
Their rules state that all design entries must be comprised of at least 50% of products purchased from Fire Mountain Gems and Beads. Each entry must include at least 50% of the product in the piece of the category in which it is being submitted. All designs must be original and a winning design from another jewelry-making contest may not be submitted.
Complete list of rules can be found here. Let the creating begin! Check back later for details about the winners of this and other Fire Mountain Jewelry Making Contests.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Sunday, July 26, 2009
Christmas jewelry was made by most of the well known vintage designers and contemporary jewelry designers bring out new lines every year. There is a wide variety of choices available, but the most popular style seems to be brooches or pins with various Christmas motifs.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
- Dates of Operation - 1886 to the present day
- Design Techinques - no real specific techniques but made great use of floral designs
- Lots of use of marcasites for accents
- Owned Tiffany and Co in the early 1980s
- Many notable designers such as Kenneth Lane, Coreen Simpson and Louis Ferraud
- Changed the name of the company in 1939 to the name we know today
- Added jewelry to their product lines in 1971
- Believed in the door to door direct marketing approach for selling
Friday, July 24, 2009
The use of coins to make jewelry goes quite a way back in history. It was very popular between the latter part of the 19th century and WWII to decorate or etch coins with floral motifs or initials. This type of jewelry became known as Sweetheart Jewelry, because sailors and soldiers would often brings these items back to their wives or girlfriends.
Other coins would simply be used as they were and made into earrings, necklaces, bracelets or cuff links. I've even seen some coins which started out whole, but ended up being cut into completely different designs such as animals, ships or the like. In this style, all that is left of the coin might just be a small part of the design.
Coin jewelry can feature coins from any country. Two countries which seems to be featured a great deal are Great Britain and the USA, with many real coins and tons of replica coins finding their way into a fashion statement. Napoleon and Julius Caesar are also often seen as figures portrayed.
Sarah Coventry had several designs of coin jewelry, but many other designers also made this style, including Freirich, Nelly Rosenstein and Ciner.
Here are a few examples.
Thursday, July 23, 2009
Wednesday, July 22, 2009
Daniel repaid his debt as soon as he could and was rewarded for his honesty with a position at the Speier jewelry company. He worked there for 10 years and learned the business from the ground up.
Florenza Demi Photo credit: Ebay Seller sweetthingsvintage
Tuesday, July 21, 2009
- Their primary color is yellow or gold
- Their birthstone is the ruby
- Their lucky numbers are 5 and 9
- Their gemstones are black onyx and peridot
- One of their flowers is a sunflower
- Their symbol is the Lion
Tying in the gemstone black onyx is an easy one. Here are a few onyx jewelry items to consider.
Would you like to purchase something in their favorite color? How about any of these yellow jewelry items?
Have fun treating your Leo friend. All pieces shown are available in my online stores. Just click the photos to go to the item pages for more details. Prices range from $10.50 to $28.99.
Monday, July 20, 2009
The winner for 2009 is Lynn Margaret Davy from Wimborne, Dorset, United Kingdom. Her necklace features all manner of Chinese, Japanese and Czech glass beads made into leaves, strings, and what appears to be a dreamcatcher.
Unfinished objects - UFOs.
I pick beads up, I start to stitch,
And so I put it to one side,
One ring down and six to make...
That night I have a great idea
Rings, cuff and collar still half-made,
And so the pile of UFOs
To finish them, to make and mend
And when at last I've served my time-O
And when the Reaper comes for me
Sunday, July 19, 2009
The scale is not a contraption that measures weight. It is a scale of relative hardness of a mineral which was developed by a German mineralogist named Frederich Mohs in 1812. It is routinely used by modern jewelers and gemologists to differentiate between various gemstones. So, if you are shopping for gemstone jewelry, it's a good idea to have some understanding of the Mohs scale.
The scale consists of 10 classifications from softest being #1 to hardest being #10. Talc is considered the softest and diamonds the hardest. Mohs based his scale on 10 minerals that were all readily available. The scale tells you how easily a mineral or gemstone can be scratched by others. (hence, the diamond can scratch all others, but cannot be scratched by them so it is the hardest on the Mohs scale.)
The Mohs scale is very low tech. Basically you test your unknown mineral against one of these standard minerals. Whichever one scratches the other is harder, and if both scratch each other they are both the same hardness. It's that simple. However, sometimes a mineral will fall in between the numbers of 1-10 so you might find one rated 2 1/2-3, for instance. To give you an idea in layman's terms - your fingernail is a #2, a copper penny is #3, and glass is approximately #6-7.
Here is an overview of the Scale
Photos courtesy of Wikipedia.org