The Allure of Gemstones

Agate Geode

Agate Geode

Even in their raw forms, gemstones are so beautiful.

Throughout history, gemstones have been worn as jewelry, used for healing, and carried for protection. Some gemstones have been used as currency by many cultures, while others were ground into cosmetics, paints & dyes. It is believed Cleopatra used powdered gemstones as eyeshadows. (And you thought your makeup was expensive.)

Funerary Mask of King Tut

King Tut's Mask

This exquisite funerary mask includes gemstones, such as lapis lazuli and turquoise among others, embedded in the gold.

Sodalite & Clear Quartz Earrings

Sodalite & Clear Quartz Earrings

Fortunately, today, we don’t have to be royalty to enjoy gemstone jewelry. There are many resources for purchasing supplies, including craft stores, trade shows, and online suppliers. One of the best resources available is called Fire Mountain Gems & Beads. Their inventory is impressive, and they offer excellent customer service, great pricing, lots of how-to videos, and reliable information for all jewelry making needs.

Unakite & Fluorite Beads

Unakite & Fluorite Beads

Each type of gemstone can have a variety of shades and colors. Some are available in one particular color, but the shades vary from light to dark. Others come in a variety of colors, such as Fluorite, which includes purples, greens and clear stones. Unakite is typically a pink and green gemstone, however some stones are all green or all pink.

Tigerseye & Glass Necklace

Tigerseye & Glass Necklace

How does Tiger’s Eye change color? This phenomenon is called chatoyancy, which is a French word meaning “Cat’s Eye.” It occurs when bright light reflects off fibers in the Tiger’s Eye stone, causing the color to appear to “change.”

Black Onyx & Carnelian Necklace

Black Onyx & Carnelian Necklace

There are many industry standard treatments (egs. Chemicals, Heat) applied to gemstones to improve color, durability, etc. Before making a purchase, make sure you know if the gems are genuine stones natural from origin or if they have been lab created, and what if any treatments have been applied.

Assorted Gemstones

Assorted Gemstones

Exposure to heat or sunlight can fade or weaken some gemstones. Air causes gold and silver to tarnish. Anti-tarnish strips will protect precious metals. After wearing your jewelry, the best way to keep it clean is to gently wipe it with a soft cloth prior to putting it away. Avoid using chemicals, which can destroy or damage gemstones..

By taking care of your gemstone jewelry, it will last for generations to come.

Happy Crafting!