Category Archives: Gemstones

Stretching Silk for Stringing

One of the issues confronted by all professional pearl and bead stringers is that most thread, including silk, stretches. Despite our best efforts and the best efforts of manufacturers, over time, the stretching results in gaps between beads and pearls, … Continue reading

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Protect Yourself & Your Client

A young relative of mine became engaged recently. Her mother, my sister, gave her an eternity band which had belonged to her husband’s mother. I’m not trying to confuse you with relatives. I looked at the ring years ago under … Continue reading

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A Happy Ending

More than once I’ve mentioned that one of the reasons for my continued fascination with jewelry is the history that can be associated with it. Here is a present-day story involving an important antique brooch with a happy ending. It’s … Continue reading

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Memo Transactions: Important Opportunity, but Use with Care

Although most pearl and bead stringers do not handle very expensive materials on a routine basis, some do. In addition, it is not at all unusual for a pearl and bead stringer to be asked to procure expensive materials for … Continue reading

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Avoid Misleading and Unethical Gemstone Descriptions

The editor-in-chief of InColor magazine, Jean Claude Michelou, recently wrote a column about the usage of the terms “precious” and “semi-precious” in describing gemstones. Although for years gemologists have been taught to avoid using the terms, the issue has resurfaced … Continue reading

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Synthetic vs Simulant: Know the Difference

Professional Jeweller, a UK trade publication, recently ran a story noting the increase in colored synthetic  gemstones that are impacting what it calls the “mid-market,” that is, commercially priced jewelry. It’s no surprise that the trade is seeing an increase … Continue reading

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The Royal Asscher Legacy

Recently the Royal Asscher Company donated a sapphire ring to raise money for AIDS. The auction was run by the Human Rights Campaign and received a great deal of trade coverage. Why? The story of Royal Asscher Company is one … Continue reading

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Cambridge Scientists Create Artificial Mother-of-Pearl

For the first time, scientists have created a material that mimics mother-of-pearl in structure, mechanical behavior and optical appearance. Nacre, also called mother of pearl, is the iridescent coating that is found on the inside of some molluscs and on … Continue reading

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Popularity of Turquoise can Result in Deceptive Practices

Turquoise is one of those gemstones whose popularity never seems to diminish. It’s been mined in various parts of the world for thousands of years and treasured by a number of ancient and modern cultures, including our own. The problem … Continue reading

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New Gem Scam Targeting Our Troops

All gem scans are bad, but some are just worse than others. And, when our troops are scammed, it’s just unconscionable. Credit goes to Antoinette Matlins, a highly respected gem expert and writer, for uncovering this scam and issuing public … Continue reading

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