Google+ The Daily Jewel: 2009


Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Gem Shopping at Bagram AB from the ISG

The ISG was recently contacted by a member of the United States Marine Corps inAfghanistan regarding our 10 minute YouTube video on Gem Shopping at Bagram AB. It seems that the internet access available to our soldiers there does not have sufficient bandwidth for them to view the video properly. As a result of this situation the ISG has produced an expanded 35 minute edition of this video to be available for direct mailing to any military personnel stationed anywhere in Afghanistan.
This expanded video covers the following information:
  • How to use a jeweler’s loupe to inspect gemstones
  • How to identify authentic Afghan Lapis Lazuli
  • How to identify treated or imitation Lapis Lazuli
  • A brief overview of traditional Afghanistan jewelry designs
  • How to identify glass filled and otherwise treated rubies
  • Images of fake rubies and fake emeralds being sold in bazaars around Bagram AB
  • Information on a variety of other gemstones that have been reported from the area
This 35 minute DVD video has been formatted and tested to play on any Macintosh laptop computer and/or any Windows based PC using Windows Media Player or comparable viewer. In additional to Macintosh computers, we have tested this video on players ranging from our 5 year old Acer laptop using the home version of Windows XP to our new HP laptoprunning Windows 7 to insure that it will be compatible with all anticipated players available to our military personnel stationed in Afghanistan.
This video is available free of charge from the ISG Community to any coalition military personnel stationed in Afghanistan, and will be shipped to any APO AE or FPO AE address sent to the email address listed below as long as we have the resources to supply these. Any military personnel stationed in Afghanistan who needs assistance with shopping information can also email to the below address to get free assistance.
Please use the following email address to contact the ISG regarding this DVD.

Monday, December 21, 2009

It Is With Great Sadness That I Share This Report From The LA Times....

Antonio Pineda dies at 90; Mexican modernist silversmith

His works 'made absolutely beautiful use of semiprecious and precious stones,' and the jewelry was 'beautifully designed to fit the human body,' a museum curator says.

Antonio Pineda, the internationally renowned Mexican modernist silversmith who was praised for his bold, striking jewelry designs and ingenious use of gemstones, has died. He was 90.

Pineda died of kidney failure Monday at his ranch home in Taxco, Mexico, said his daughter Veronica Falzone.

A Taxco native, Pineda was among the most prominent of the many silversmiths to emerge from the mountain mining town beginning in the 1930s.

He was the subject of a 2008-09 exhibition at UCLA's Fowler Museum,
“Silver Seduction: The Art of Mexican Modernist Antonio Pineda,”which traced the evolution of his work through the 1970s.

"He was certainly one of the major modernist silversmiths in the 1950s, '60s and certainly into the '70s," said Betsy Quick, the Fowler's director of education and the show's in-house curator.

...for more of the story as reported in the Los Angeles Times... and a gorgeous photo gallery of Pineda's work

Friday, December 11, 2009

Honora Pearls Declares It's "TIME" to give!

It is that time of year when we traditionally look for worthy causes to donate time and money to. When the plight of those less fortunate is brought home every time we sit down to a family dinner in a warm house.

In the spirit of the season the folks at Honora are taking on a HUGE project! For those of you who follow the Social Media platforms, you know that Honora Pearls has invested mightily with a presence on Twitter, Facebook and their own Honora Blog...well they are hoping that this investment will pay off in the fight against Childhood hunger in the US!

Honora Aims To Raise $30,000 For Children’s Hunger This Holiday

Honora is working with Share Our Strength, a national charity seeking to end childhood hunger by 2015, to raise $30,000 to fight Children's Hunger using Social Media outreach.

Honora is using the last two weeks of the holiday season as an opportunity to give back to those who are truly in need this year. To encourage donations, anyone willing to give $30 dollars or more to Share Our Strength will receive a black genuine leather and mother-of-pearl floating Freshwater Pearl watch courtesy of Honora valued at $100 MSRP.

“No matter how challenging this year has been we must seek out opportunities to give back to those who are truly in need,” says Joel Schechter, CEO of Honora Industries, Inc. “Helping children who go without just felt like the right way to end the year.”

Honora will offer these watches to the first 1,000 people living in the United States who donate. Visit The Honora Blog on Monday, December 14thto find out all of the details behind our “Time to Share” initiative with Share Our Strength.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

2010 AGTA Spectrum Awards™ Collection - Classical

2010 AGTA Spectrum Awards™ Collection - Classical

Entry 284 Carley Boehm
Solana Beach, CA
"Shanghai Noir" platinum ring featuring a 7.32 ct. emerald-cut yellow Sapphire accented by tsavorite Garnets (3.76 ctw.) and Diamonds (1.10 ctw.).

Entry 504 Ashleigh Branstetter
New Orleans, LA
18K yellow gold "ruffle wing" pendant featuring green Amber (21.35 ctw.) and pave Diamonds (.43 ctw.).

Entry 150 Victor Velyan
Victor Velyan
Los Angeles, CA
18K yellow gold "Dragonfly" pendant featuring andradite Garnets (7.45 ctw.) and multi-colored Diamonds (3.25 ctw.).

Entry 17 Loren O. Hovland
Santa Rosa, CA
18K yellow gold and platinum necklace featuring an oval Brazilian Paraiba Tourmaline (1.08 cts.), abalone Pearls (17.20 ctw.) accented with Paraiba Tourmalines (4.98 ctw.) and Diamonds (.28 ctw.).

Entry 512 Alejandra Solomone
New York, NY
18K yellow, white, rose and green gold necklace featuring Prehnite (7.63 ctw.), blue Topaz (5.18 ctw.), Iolites (2.73 ctw.) and Diamonds (0.80 ctw).

Entry 526 Ashok Sancheti
Designs by Ashok Sancheti dba Pioneer Gems
New York, NY
Natural blue Agate bangle featuring platinum and white Diamonds (18.73 ctw.).

...this final group is from the category winner....

Entry 552 Lilly Fitzgerald
Spencer, MA
22K yellow gold hand-carved pendant featuring a black Opal.

Entry 553 Lilly Fitzgerald
Spencer, MA
22K yellow gold hand-carved necklace featuring a Tanzanite cabochon.

...and the winning piece!

Entry 554 Lilly Fitzgerald
Spencer, MA
22K yellow gold necklace featuring multi-colored Sapphire cabochons.

Check out the rest of the category on the AGTA website.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Jewelry for Jewelers - Lee Marshall

I was reading a blog post from one of my favorite MetalSmith pals BZ - of Cosmos Moon. She talks about "Gifts for MetalSmiths" this being the season of giving. The first thing that came to mind was this wonderful post by my go-to Tool man - Lee Marshall of Knew Concepts - the designer of the Bonny Doon Hydraulic Press, Knew Concepts Saw, MicroFold Brake and multi award winning engineer.

Photos Include: Bracelet by Cynthia Eid using the MicroFold Brake; Microfold Brake; Knew Concepts Electric Saw; thrilled workshop attendee using the electric saw!

I Make Jewelry for Jewelers
by Lee Marshall

Who hasn't seen Tee shirts emblazoned with sayings such as "TOOL FOOL", bumper stickers with "I BRAKE FOR TOOLS"?

How many times have you as a jeweler, given an encircled
picture or catalog description of a tool or machine with the notation saying: "This is the one that I want for my anniversary, wedding, birthday, holiday, etc"?

Jewelers fall into a very special category of unique individuals. Those on the "outside" have a hard time coming up with gift ideas for them.

Flowers won't work with this crowd; candy leaves them cold, brandy isn't the answer, and diamonds...they would only use them to make something for someone else! No, the best way to show love or friendship to this group is to give them a tool.

These folks still cherish their very first good tool, and probably still use it every day. In my case, I still have tools given to me by my father over sixty years ago, and even though I don't use them much anymore, as our interests diverged, I still fondle them with reverence.

Good tools free creativity, while poor tools limit it. I have been making tools for jewelers and metalsmiths for more than twenty years, and for the longest time didn't recognize that my appreciation for tools and machinery was shared by others. This was brought home to me when I shipped a tool
to a customer and it happened to arrive on her birthday, along with a box of long-stemmed roses from her brother, and a package from her husband. As she related this story to me later, she confessed that she opened mine first. After all, the piece that she was working on needed the tool to finish it, and her husband would get to see her open his gift to her. Now, this is rationalization of the first order.

For the past 20 years, I have been trying to figure out how to describe to others what it is that I do. I realize now that I occupy a very small niche within the universe circumscribed by the field of jewelry. While some would say that I am an insignificant piece of the larger puzzle, I feel that I
participate in making objects of beauty.

That's good enough for me.

What I do is create jewelry for jewelers.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Part 2: 2010 AGTA Spectrum Awards™ Collection - Business Day Wear

The Business Day Wear category continues with everything from brooches, pendants and rings to bracelets...however I did notice a trend to the Ocean Theme with lots of blues and some really incredible pearl pieces....

Entry 264 Mark Schneider
Long Beach, CA
18K green gold pendant featuring an 11.38 ct. Opal, 77 seed Pearls, Diamonds (0.36 ctw.), green Diamonds (0.11 ctw.) and yellow Diamonds (0.06 ctw.).

Entry 43 Graham Edney
Santa Barbara, CA
18K yellow gold necklace featuring 98 freshwater Pearls with a platinum and Diamond (.35 ctw.) pendant.

Entry 86 Danielle Meshorer
San Francisco, CA
14K yellow gold kelp cuff set with round champagne Diamonds (.44 ctw.)

Entry 271 Susan Sadler
Susan Sadler, Fine Jewelry Design
Tulsa, OK
Vintage tortoise-color bakelite cuff featuring a 26x20 Chinese freshwater Pearl and pave Diamonds (0.84 ctw.) set in 18K and 18.5K yellow gold

Entry 582 James W. Currens
J.W. Currens, Inc.
New York, NY
"Bee Line" earrings featuring two 15.6mm golden Pearls and two 12.2mm white Pearls accented with yellow and white Diamonds (3.96 ctw.), Emerald (.06 ctw.), Ruby (.09 ctw.) and Sapphire (.03 ctw.).

Entry 81 Debbe Woodburg
Park City Jewelers
Park City, UT
14K rose and white gold "Flying Pig" pendant featuring a Baroque Pearl accented with Diamonds (.50 ctw.).

Entry 79 Debbe Woodburg
Park City Jewelers
Park City, UT
14K yellow gold "Angelfish" brooch featuring a Baroque Pearl accented with Diamonds (.45 ctw.)

Entry 49 Jorge Adeler
Great Falls, VA
14K yellow gold ring featuring a 30.5mm baroque freshwater Pearl accented with white Diamonds (.34 ctw.)

Can you believe that I didn't even show you everything in this category? Make sure to check the AGTA site.

I am going to leave you with the following wish of the season....

Entry 217 Gregore Morin
Santa Barbara, CA
18K white gold "Dressed to Chill" brooch featuring red Garnets (.97 ctw.), black and white Diamonds (.73 ctw.) and spessartite Garnets (.04 ctw.).

2010 AGTA Spectrum Awards™ Collection - Business Day Wear

Back to the AGTA Spectrum entries and winners...the "Business Day Wear" category is extensive and includes a little bit of are some of the pieces that I loved...

2010 AGTA Spectrum Awards™ Collection - Business Day Wear

There were pins, rings, pendants, neckpieces, brooches, earrings...and bracelets - this category covered it all...

big bold gems...from the rough, etched and hammered face of the Lemon Quartz in Jorge Adelers rings...

Entry 47 Jorge Adeler
Great Falls, VA
14K yellow gold ring featuring a 47.35 ct. lemon Quartz. the traditional simplicity of...

Entry 159 Robert Pelliccia
Lighthouse Point, FL
Platinum ring featuring an 18.64 ct. Kunzite accented with Peridots (.45 ctw.) and Diamonds (.83 ctw.).

Carved Emeralds were the choice of...

Entry 3 Matthias Haag
Lother Haag America, Inc.
Los Angeles, CA
White gold leaf pendant featuring a carved Emerald frog (3.0 ctw.).

Entry 4 Matthias Haag
Lother Haag America, Inc.
Los Angeles, CA
Yellow gold pin/brooch featuring a carved Emerald Nefertiti (20.60 ctw.) accented with square Emeralds (.60 ctw.).

Entry 90 Katy Briscoe
Katy Briscoe, Inc.
Houston, TX
18K yellow gold ring featuring a 20.18 ct. carved Emerald accented with Ebony and Diamonds (.18 ctw.).

Just a few of the amazing bracelets...we can start with the First Place winner in this category...

Entry 532 Ariane Zurcher
Long Island City, NY
18K brushed yellow gold bracelet featuring cabochons of pink Topaz (25.08 ctw.), mandarin Garnets (17.21 ctw.), Paraiba Tourmalines (4.03 ctw.), Tourmalines (12.0 ctw.), Aquamarines (2.96 ctw.) and pink Sapphires (2.69 ctw.).

Entry 286 Belle Brooke Barer
Los Angeles, CA
18K yellow gold bracelet featuring blue Tourmalines
(6.16 ctw.), blue Zircons (1.98 ctw.) and Aquamarines (1.98 ctw.).

...and I really love the brown patina on these two bracelets (does anyone know this secret?)...

Entry 230 Armenta
Houston, TX
18K yellow gold and oxidized sterling silver cuff featuring a 4.75 ct. green Quartz accented with white and black Diamonds (.50 ctw.).

Entry 148 Victor Velyan
Victor Velyan
Los Angeles, CA
24K yellow gold and silver with brown patina bangle featuring a 20.54 ct. oval star Ruby cabochon and natural colored Diamonds (3.15 ctw.).

Pendants in all sizes and colors - the use of less expensive stones is balanced by the carving, cuts and rarity of some of the Gems chosen...

Entry 285 Alishan Halebian
Irvine, CA
18K yellow gold pendant featuring a 40x36x30mm dendritic Quartz, a 2.33 ct. pear-shaped spessartite Garnet and Diamonds (0.06 ctw.).

Entry 191 Mark Winters
Mark Winters
Klamath Falls, OR
18K white and rose gold "As the World Turns" reversible pendant featuring a 15.0 ct. carved Sunstone and a 12.0 ct. Moonstone accented with Lapis Lazuli (2.0 ctw.).

I am going to end Part 1 of Business Day Wear with my favorite ring...this is something I would wear...

Entry 206 Gabriel Ofiesh
Charlottesvile, VA
18K yellow and 14K white gold "Cognac Garland Orbit" ring featuring brown and white Diamonds (1.25 ctw.)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

French High Jewelry Invades Manhattan....

Looking through the Farlang site I came across a wonderful offer - I was looking at the Jewels of France Exhibit and did you know that just by registering on the Farlang site you can win a copy of:

Marchak by Marguerite De Cerval - the story of the legendary house of Marchak which was founded in Kiev in 1878 by Joseph Marchak (1854-1918), moved to Paris and was re-launched internationally in 1989 by the founder's great-grandson - many fine Art Deco and more recent pieces of fine jewellery are featured - The Rebirth,
The Vital Lead, The Legacy, Joseph Marchak and
Alexander Marchak.

The author Marguerite De Cerval is an art historian, specialized in 20th Century French jewellery - this out-of-print edition features around 200 photos.

...and for those of you who are lucky enough to be in Manhattan and attend the event, you can double your chances to win by entering the drawing at the Aaron Faber Gallery!

OK - I am officially jealous - the artists featured in this exhibit is phenomenal!!!! So - if you are in the Manhattan area visit the exhibit and if not go to the Farlang site and register to get a great source of French Design for your personal enjoyment!

French High Jewelry Invades Manhattan for the Annual Jewels of France Exhibition... Aaron Faber Gallery to Host 13 of France’s Celebrated Jewelry Houses and Designers...

The Jewels of France Exhibition and Trunk Show is an annual week long gathering of some of France’s most acclaimed jewelry houses and their designers. Aligned again in its second year with Aaron Faber Gallery, the Jewels of France exhibition offers both trade and consumers an opportunity to meet the Creative Directors behind these houses and learn more about the exquisite and complicated art of French jewelry manufacture.

This year’s participants include Marchak, the 131 year old jewelry house founded by Joseph Marchak, the “Cartier” of Kiev and Peter Fabergé’s greatest rival; Bijoux Commelin, the 129 year-old manufacture of charms and specialist in translucent enamel; and BRM, the only watch company in the world that designs and manufacturers all of their watches and watch components in France. Also participating are Umane Créations, Joïa, La Joaillerie Récréative, Sylvain Nosjean, Tess & Tasha, Veronique Bailly, Ximena Alarcon Cavrois, Sophie Reyre, Antoine Camus, and Garnazelle. for the full release ...

About Farlang: Farlang Gem & Diamond Foundation would like to offer students, educators, the discerning public, and those in industries or institutions associated with geology and
gemmology, the opportunity to research and continuously learn about our fascinating planet and its exceptionally creative artisans through the Earth's most prized riches.

We want to take you on an exotic and colourful voyage around the world to enhance your knowledge about one of the most cherished objects throughout history, the mineral or organic stone known as gemstones or jewels. Treasured for its beauty, rarity, and durability, jewelled objects and accessories have withstood the test of time to tell its story. A tale filled with intrigue, romance, power, beauty, wealth, and fascinating people.

Along the way, we shall provide you with opportunities to read about history, different countries, trustworthy news, and sound advice from experts. You shall also be introduced to many unique designers and artists from around the globe that we found contribute greatly to the Fine Arts. A feast for the eyes and food for the brain!


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