I admit I have a stone addiction. I am fascinated by all sorts of gems, from smooth cabs to sparkly faceted and, specially, interesting phenomenal gems, which have rare "special effects". I learn as much as I can about gemology, with help from some very knowledgeable people from GemologyOnline and many dealers who have become friends over time.
Since I am an engineer, I love the physics and mathematics that go into precision cutting. In this technique, the cutter considers all aspects of a stone to cut it to the precise angles and patterns that maximize the effect. Many precision cutters develop their own patterns and some are very creative, like the Liquid Flower cut below.
Liquid Flower cut by Osiris Gems (smoky Quartz and Amethyst)
Concave cut tourmaline by Richard Homer
Fancy cut sphene by Gene Flenigan
Modified Trillion Rose Quartz by Peter Torraca
Gem carvers not only facet or polish a stone, but they also include three dimensional carvings, which change as the light moves. I searched for a long time until I found this Munsteiner amethyst and it is one of my pride and joys.
|3.3ct Munsteiner Amethyst|
Inclusions are also interesting - small bits of "something" that get trapped inside the crystal as it is forming. They are very unique, reflecting the creation of that particular stone is forming, and visually impacting.
Fluorite crystal in quartz
Lepidocrite in quartz
"Pink Fire" covallite quartz (it flashes neon pink in sunlight)
Sunstone with copper schiller
These are tenebrescent hackmanites. If they are kept in the dark, they become a pale pink, blue or lavender. As they are exposed to sunlight, however, they slowly darken. This is completely reversible, so after a few hours in the dark, they are pale again.
And that is far from all... there are plenty more of all of these, as well as cabs and phenomenal stones, which will have to wait for a different post.
Yes, I am addicted and I have no plans to be cured any time soon. There are too many beautiful gems still out there!
This month the aspiring metalsmiths are bringing out their stones. For many, collecting stones has become an addiction. Come take a look at their favorites and what makes them so special.
Autumn Bradley - http://www.autumnbradley.blogspot.com/
Clarity @ Scrollwork Designs - http://thesquarepegnation.blogspot.com/
Stacy Low - http://www.formandfunktionaccessories.blogspot.com
Chrissi Lynn Designs - http://www.chrissilynn.blogspot.com
Sylvia Anderson - http://www.sylviaanderson.blogspot.com/
Jessica @ Abella Blue - http://www.abellablue.com/blog
Contemporary Jewelry by Beatriz Fortes - http://cjbf.blogspot.com/
Esmeralda - http://jewelry-by-silverblueberry.blogspot.com/
Steph Stargell - http://www.stephstargell.com
Pennee - http://allwiredupjewelrydesigns.blogspot.com/
Silver Pearl Jewelry and Metalworks - http://silverpearlmetalworks.wordpress.com/2011/02/20/show-us-your-stones/#more-4
ArtistiKat - http://artistikat-scratchingpost.blogspot.com/
Claire - brightstar109.blogspot.com/