My love affair with gemstones started a long time ago. The first ones I bought myself were garnets, set in a silver ring that, thirty years later, I still wear. Then I discovered topaz. The gentle blue and incredible luster caught my eye and claimed a piece of my heart.
Now, in 2020, at the start of November, of which topaz is the birthstone, it got me thinking. Why are we drawn to topaz? It is, after all, the bestselling semi-precious gemstone in our shop, irrespective if it is set in gold or silver.
We usually have them available in blue and with the ups and downs of this difficult year it is not surprising that many people seem to be instinctively drawn to this colours’ calming properties. It can be Sky blue which looks a lot like aquamarine, Swiss blue, a deeper, more intense shade or London blue, which has a tinge of grey but it always looks good.
Crystal experts say that topaz is a stone of love and good fortune that is able to alleviate doubt and uncertainty. Could this be why we have seen more topaz jewellery sold than any other gemstone? Even if it is, that is not the only reason you should consider topaz. It is a durable stone. Coming in at 8 on Moh’s scale of hardness, it will wear well for generations.
Topaz is also available in pink, yellow, green or brown and even silver. Whatever your preference, we are sure to have one that will strengthen your love affair with topaz.
If you would like to know more, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will gladly assist.
We are almost half way through March and it feels as if the optimism we had at the beginning of 2020 has taken a beating. The budget speech, Covid 19, loadshedding, the list just seems to grow longer every day!
Elizabeth Taylor said: “Pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick and pull yourself together”. We would like to add “Get out your aquamarine jewellery and wear it!”
Aquamarine is said to calm the nerves, restore order and give courage. Even though it is the birthstone for March, we are sure the lucky ones born in this month will not mind sharing their beautiful stone with the rest of us.
This beautiful blue stone derives its name from Latin (aqua marina for “sea water”) and belongs to the beryl family. Its cousins are, amongst others, emerald and morganite.
Ancient sailors took it with them on voyages as it was believed to protect them on their journey in unchartered waters. Archeologists have found aquamarine in many Egyptian tombs and the Greeks used it in their art as long as two thousand years ago.
Today aquamarine is used in many types of jewellery. From spiritual pendants and bracelets to engagement and cocktail rings, statement earrings and humble studs. It is a durable stone (7.5 – 8 on Moh’s scale of hardness) and will wear well in any type of jewellery you choose.
Sterling silver is a very attractive, lustrous precious metal. Even though it has been alloyed with another metal to make it harder, it is still the softest precious metal available. Sterling silver is not ideal for jewellery that requires continuous daily wear, such as engagement rings and wedding bands.
It may scratch and bend under repetitive daily wear, pressure or sudden knocks. Thin silver rings in particular will not wear well over a long time if you wear them constantly.
Over time, sterling silver jewellery may tarnish. It is primarily the other alloy metals in sterling silver, like copper, that can cause it to take on a black or green hue.
Always take sterling silver jewellery off when in a shower, sauna, spa or while swimming. Wear rubber gloves if you’re washing up with silver rings on your hands.
The speed of the tarnishing depends on the water (including bathing, perspiration and air moisture) and chemicals (sulphur pollution in the air, soaps, detergents and cosmetics) that you come into contact with. It is advisable to clean your jewellery on a regular basis.
Celebrate the new year with the January birth stone, the garnet. A stone that symbolizes physical love and the relationship between loving partners, the garnet was popular among royalty. According to legend, the animals of Noah’s Ark can thank a large Garnet stone for providing the only light on their biblical journey and guiding them safely to land.
The garnet crystal meaning is rooted in ancient history and comes from the Latin word ‘granatum’, which means pomegranate. According to Greek mythology, a pomegranate is seen as a gift of love and is associated with eternity. To this day, garnet remains a gift of love and is traditionally given for the 19th wedding anniversary.
With a hardness of 6.5 to 7.5 on the MOHS scale, garnet is suitable for wearing every day. The rich red to dark red colour adds warmth and depth to any metal used for jewellery, be it yellow gold or sterling silver.
So for the fun of it, buy yourself a garnet and start a whole new year full of love and healing.
Author: Brandon Morrison
The dawn of the new year greets us with one of the most exciting gemstones of them all, the garnet. Why exciting you ask? The garnet family is extensive, from red garnets, to orange, purplish, and green. Even with green garnets, you can choose between demantoids and tsavorites. If red is just not your colour, but you do want to wear your birthstone, you may consider tsavorite. With its deep green that rivals emerald, the brilliance of tsavorite will take your breath away.
It is still a young gemstone. The first discovery was in Tanzania in 1967. It is 200 times rarer than emerald. An added bonus is that it requires no colour enhancement at all thus you will always know it is the real deal.
It is said that spiritually the tsavorite garnet will help you get your life back on track and bring prosperity to those who wear it. But too afraid to wear it every day? No need to worry! It is 7 to 7.5 on MOHs scale of hardness so if looked after properly, tsavorite will give pleasure to the wearer for many generations.
Author: Rhead Morrison
Call to action
There are two types of people – those who make resolutions for the New Year and those who don’t.
While I don’t normally belong in the first category, I decided to do things a bit different this year. Instead of grand solutions, I have decided to simplify and start with the little things. Smile at strangers (try it, you will be surprised at the reaction). Smile at yourself (if anything, it will make those around you wonder what you’re up to!).
Clean out the clutter. Again, I started with a small thing: my jewellery box. I was amazed at what I found. One earring that used to be part of a pair. Actually, there was more than one of those. A gold chain that has worn links. An old ring with a very nice stone, but the style does not suit me anymore.
All the broken pieces and the items that no longer serve a purpose in my life are in a packet. My jeweller will unset the stones and the metal is ready to be taken in as credit towards a new piece of jewellery. It will be a reflection of me, of where I am in my life. I cannot wait to show you the end product!
If you have the same dilemma, pack your things together, call us to make an appointment and we will help you make new jewellery memories.
Birthday in December? Lucky you have a choice of three birthstones: turquoise, lapis lazuli and the beautiful tanzanite.
Despite being a relative newcomer having only been discovered in 1967, tanzanite is an important gemstone that captured the imagination of collectors and wearers of fine jewellery alike. Initially, the supply of good quality stones was limited to collectors but in the 1980’s there was a surge in material from the mines in Tanzania and people really started to take notice of this exceptional stone.
It is no secret that tanzanite needs to be heated and it is this dramatic colour transformation that has led to its success. Colours vary from intense blue (being the most expensive) to pale lilac and lavender.
The beauty of tanzanite is best appreciated in fine jewellery, however, due to it being a relative soft stone (6.5 – 7 Mohs) it should not be set in a ring that will be worn every day. It can be brittle and will chip quite easily. Earrings and pendants work best for showing of your beautiful tanzanite.
From me. To me.
It all started in the 1920’s. Women cut their hair, lifted the hems on their dresses and started wearing trousers (GASP!!). Next thing we knew, they got voting rights (another GASP!!). What was the world coming to? Transparency, is what. Having ruled the roost from the background, women finally realized that their voices counted.
When growing up, I literally had two choices – become a teacher or a nurse. Thankfully, the exciting Eighties dawned. A job was no longer just to supplement the household income. No, we could now have a career. The world was our oyster. We could choose!
Here is the question: if you can choose your make of car, or shoes, even microwave, why not choose your own jewellery? Our shop in Cullinan has experienced the change. More and more women come in and choose their own jewellery. From a simple pair of silver hoops to diamond studs, the purchase is accompanied by “this is to celebrate getting that promotion / getting my degree / being chosen as a leader in my field / my birthday”. The list goes on and on. We hear beautiful stories, women who have overcome impossible obstacles and came out even stronger. Fact is, most of our clients are women. Strong, independent, feminine, clever, compassionate and passionate women.
We get you. And we would love to be part of your story.