I promised some time ago that I was going to increase my stock of 3mm rose cuts. It’s not easy to get these little chaps cut, as cutting prices everywhere are soaring (due to a shortage of skilled cutters and the increase of labour costs in countries like India and China – but that’s another story for another day…). However, I am now pleased to present citrine, rhodolite garnet, almandite garnet, Brazilian amethyst and peridot to my collection, all at $1.60 per stone. Very pretty, with the nice kite-shaped faceting characteristic of my stones.These are in addition to my existing stock of 3mm rose cuts – black diamond, blue and pink sapphire, ruby and London Blue Topaz. Coming soon I have new stocks of the AAA grade rainbow moonstone which proved so popular as well as white topaz in this size and cut.
For any of you who don’t get my newsletter and are interested, here it is, for a round-up of new stock and a reminder about my Spring 15% discount offer.
I’m offering a fabulous 15% Spring discount across all products in my store this Spring! A great opportunity to stock up on some sparklers for the summer, or even for your Autumn/Winter collections. All you need to do to claim your discount is to use the following code as you go through checkout: SPRING15. Offer runs until 31st May 2013 and is limited to one use per customer.
This is really interesting; a collaboration between Etsy Wholesale and Nordstrom, offering Etsy sellers the opportunity to place their goods into Nordstrom stores. I’ve long thought that Etsy offers a fantastic deal on jewellery, bringing original, one-off designs made from precious metals and proper gemstones into reach for the average person who wants quality but can’t consider spending thousands of dollars. I’ve blogged before about big-brand costume jewellery and how much you don’t get for your money and to me, Etsy is the antidote to that. So it’s great to see that big stores are now recognising the prodigious amount of talent collected there, and giving it a wider audience and the kind of helpful credibility that having your products in a large store can confer. Now, I’ve no idea what kinds of products Nordstrom are looking for, or the scope and reach of the programme – it seems that you have to sign up for Etsy’s wholesale programme and then the selection of products is done as a collaboration between Etsy and Nordstrom – but I hope they do recognise some of the unique jewellery design, and I’d love to hear from anyone who benefits from this programme. For the article in JCK News click here, for the Etsy blog post describing the programme (as well as other retailers Etsy has linked up with) click here, to sign up for Etsy’s wholesale programme, click here.
I’ve been wanting to do this for a while and have only just worked out how! The idea is that every time you successfully refer a friend to my shop, Joopy Gems, you both get a 15% discount. Your friend will be sent a 15% coupon valid on their first order once you refer them. You will receive your coupon once they have actually placed an order. You can refer as many friends as you like, share the coupon on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, and you will get a discount for each successful referral. I’ve sent out some emails to invite existing customers who I think will be interested, so if you haven’t got one, or if you are not an existing customer but still want to join the scheme, here’s how you do it:
1. Click this link to access the referral sign-up page: http://joopygems.referralcorner.com
2. Enter your email address to set up your personal referral corner
That’s it! You will have options to share via email, Facebook and Twitter and the system will automatically work out if and when your friends shop and send you a coupon each time someone places their first order!
I’ve had such a headache with labradorite over the past year or so. Trying to find nice quality material, with good labradorescence, I’ve seen an awful lot of murky coloured material with little or no colour play, and I’ve sent back lots of the stuff as being no good. After all, labradorite without its famed stunning optical effects is just a dull grey stone. Now, it’s not that difficult to find beautiful individual examples of it, but sourcing a reliable supply that can produce calibrated cabochons in quantity is a different matter. Now I can say, I think I’ve found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow; beautiful translucent material with superb flash. This really is stunning material, with minimal cracks.
I always get the same message from customers when they buy labradorite; good flash and no cracks, please. This is quite hard, because it is the layered nature of labradorite, leading to the interference of light at its internal structures, that produces its famous schiller, and quite often these cracks and fractures break through to the polished surface of the stone. So, whilst I will say that this is amongst the cleanest material I have seen, it is not completely free from cracks. But you can see for yourself; it is very beautiful, and when I opened my first packet of samples, I breathed a sigh of pure bliss!!
Currently I have 4mm, 6mm and 12mm cabochons priced at $0.95, $2.25 and $18 per stone, and you can find them here. There is a choice of colours; you can opt for blue/aqua flash or green/gold flash. In time I will be replacing all of my labradorite stock with this wonderful material; look out in the next few weeks for 4mm and 6mm rose cuts.
This is Pantone’s colour of 2013; a pleasing shade of blue-green, soft but with enough vibrancy to pack a punch. I remember when green was considered an awkward colour, difficult to wear. Times have changed and even if green still makes you nervous, jewellery is a good way of adding an accent of colour; dipping your toes in without getting completely soaked! The colour has also seen a rise in popularity in jewellery in recent years with the growing awareness of stones like chrysophase, which can make an excellent opaque emerald substitute. Emerald itself can be difficult; whilst it is indisputably beautiful, it’s expensive and I’ve seen the price of even lower grade opaque material soar over the past few years. Cheaper transparent material may be brittle and included, and rather lacking in lustre and so a more cost effective option might be the green and green-blue tourmalines. For vibrant green, chrome diopside is a good option.
In this colour range I have a selection of emerald cabochons, tourmaline and chrome diopside, plus a number of watermelon tourmaline slices in hard-to-find shades of blues and greens, available at www.joopygems.com Whilst emerald is often paired with diamond, greens also partner well with warm golds such as citrine and purples; all shades of amethyst from pale lavender to deep grape.
I’ve got a Pinterest board with a huge selection of jewellery in this colour range. To pick out just a few (which is hard!), to the right is a ring from Wexford Jewelers; the Emerald and Diamond Wedding set, in 14k yellow gold. To the left and below is the ‘Skyscraper IV, Destroyed. A tourmaline rough ring’. This is a fantastic natural bi-colour tourmaline crystal set in silver and 14k gold with diamond accents. I love this; you can see the natural crystal formation on this along with the growth marks. Wexford Jewelers are based in Michigan in the USA; a team of three sisters who, in their own words, ‘create a bouquet of exquisite pieces using recycled silver & gold, exquisite rough and polished gemstones, re-purposed diamonds, and rare minerals’. Unlike most other small-scale jewellers, they use the method of lost wax casting extensively in their work, carving their designs from wax first before having them cast in metal, lending a fluid and dynamic quality to their work. You can visit their shop here.
Charmian Harris is a British based designer, who cites early Greek and Roman jewellery as well as Egyptian jewellery as among her influences. She cuts and shapes her own stones and handpicks each one from collectors, dealers and sometimes direct from mine owners. I would imagine that this is extremely liberating for a designer, not to be bound by existing shapes and cuts. Certainly, Charmian’s work displays a striking fluidity and individuality; solid rock appears to flow in fantastically imagined forms. To the right is her Sea Creature pendant made of 18 carat gold, chrysophase, white sapphire and diamond. I love the shape and the sinuous lines of this piece; wonderfully tactile. To the right is her 18 carat gold ring with chrysophase; a form that appears organic and living with its curving lines and textured metal. You can find Charmian’s website and shop here.
Here’s something a little bit different: to the left is Adzia’s Fingerprint Wedding band. A unisex band with a fingerprint and a gemstone, Chicago-based Adzia makes these to order, so that you can wear your beloved’s fingerprint wherever you go! To the left is an example in 14 carat white gold set with a natural emerald, but you can choose your metal, your gemstone and your finish. A very unique way of sealing your relationship, and not only do I like the idea, I also love the look of this – I adore textured metal! Adzia has a whole range of fingerprint rings, with and without gemstones; prints on the inside, prints on the outside, you name it! You can find this ring, and more examples of Adzia’s work here
For a spot of sheer glamour, why not have a look at Hong Kong based designer-maker Steve Cheen’s work? Steve’s work is complex and highly detailed, despite handmaking each piece. To the right is his Jaguar Engagement Ring, made from 14K white gold with emeralds and diamonds. To me this is reminiscent of the 1930s with its curving lines, pave setting and intricately imagined jaguar head, the kind of elegant piece that might have adorned the finger of Wallis Simpson. To the left is his 3.2 carat green tourmaline ring set in 14 carat gold with diamonds. Again, the channel set diamonds lend traditional glamour, and the green tourmaline is spectacular. Steve will design to your specifications, and treats each piece as an individual artwork. For other examples of his work, you can find his shop here.
You can find more examples on my Pinterest board , below a selection, from left to right: necklace made of paper discs from German-based Dorisse at Paper Statement, Dior Fine Jewellery’s fantastical le Bal des Roses bal d’autrefois ring in white gold with diamonds, emeralds, chrysoprase, green tourmalines, tsavorite garnets and paraiba tourmalines, British based Louise O’Neill’s 18 carat gold necklace with green and pink tourmalines, and Jewelry by Johan’s Meteorite ring inlaid with platinum and set with a trillion cut emerald.