Here comes 2016! Posted on 29 Dec 16:01 , 0 comments

    I've been quiet for a few weeks with the craziness of Christmas and everything everyone goes through in December.  There is an upcoming auction where there are pretty many nice vintage items, some costume pieces and some pieces in sterling, 10kt and 14kt gold.  There are a few Native American pieces as well.  I'm always searching for new and unique pieces.  This auction has  rings, garnets, pearl, diamond, and some interesting stones that I won't know what they are until I get them and can get them under magnification and other gemology tools.  I will post a photo of them in my facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/Mariasvintagegems/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel over the weekend.  

    I used to keep away from pearls but after completing my gemology courses and learning more about pearls, I do not shy away from them.  Just like any stone, the more you see and study, the more you learn.  It's an ongoing process but very interesting and the internet is a great source for learning about gemstones.  Finding hallmarks is also another thing that can take time but again thankfully the internet also helps in that regard.  Some of my favorite research sites can be find by searching "jewelry hallmarks", "jeweler's maker marks."  Polished gemstone identification is a big help too - sometimes it's easier to do a search than pull a text book - although it is helpful having some experience and past searches under my belt.   Here are some of the sites I look at: 

http://rocktumbler.com/polished-stones-iden

http://rocktumbler.com/polished-stones/

http://www.gemmineonline.com/about.html

http://typesofturquoise.com/?page_id=218

http://turquoiseland.com/?page_id=159

http://www.gemdat.org/gem-4060.html

  These are just quick websites for matching photos - there is a lot more that goes into it but it is a good start.   Just remember, if a gemstone is perfect, bells should ring for it being manufactured either a synthetic or imitation.   There is more that goes into identifying a stone than looking at a photo.  There are refractive indexes, florescence, specific gravity, and more.  identifying a stone is figuring out what it isn't first and then getting to what it is.  It is like being a detective.  If it is something that appeals to you I can strong recommend Robert James at the International School of Gemology.  It is an affordable school and can be done on line.  I completed the gemology courses and moved on to appraisal courses.  Completed the courses but have been stalling on the finals.  In any event, I highly recommend that school.  I did it just so I could bid with some confidence knowing the stone is what it is to be and also when I get treasures in lots, I'm not giving away a stone that is valuable assuming it is not.  My course has paid for itself  many times over with what I have learned.

  One more thing - free shipping on items over $15.00 purchased now through February 14, 2016.

   Happy New Year!