Tagged jewelry

Green Agate Necklace, Earrings and Bracelet

Stone of the Month—Tree Agate aka Moss or Dendritic Agate

Our beautiful summery and refreshing stone of the month is Tree Agate.  It has green veins on a white background, giving it a cool, leafy-glade type of feeling.  The green veins or dendrites, come from the Greek word “dendron” meaning “tree.” Tree agate is also associated with summer in that it is called a stone of abundance or plenitude.  Wearing Tree Agate  is said to guard against natural disasters and dispel sickness.  Tree agate also encourages strength and perseverance, the ability to meet challenges, and the capacity to see the connections in life all around. Since the stone has a strong calming influence, it is helpful in the relief of many disorder, including those of the nervous system, including exhaustion, the skeletal and circulatory system, and relief from general pain. Wearing Tree Agate was thought to encourage the favor of the gods.

By the way, have you ever wondered why children’s marbles are called “aggies”?  They’re named for the material they were made from—agate.

See some of our beautiful Tree Agate jewelry in person at one of our upcoming events!

African Jade

African Jade is named for its point of origin. There are two main types of jade—jadeite and nephrite. This month’s jade is


the nephrite variety. Its name comes from the Greek word for “kidney”

because nephrite was thought to cure illnesses of the kidney

and spleen. African Jade is one of the oldest and most culturally influential gemstones, dating back thousands of years.

Nephrite jade is found mainly in its green shade, but it can be seen in

shades of white, grey, brown and yellow. The deep green color is the most sought after for its beauty and value.


In addition to being thought of as a healing stone for internal

organs, jade is also an imperial gemstone, meaning it represents

beauty, purity and grace. Today it is thought to be a stone of dreams

which blesses whatever it touches, as well as possessing restorative powers.

Finally, African Jade alleviates joint pain and fights viral and bacterial infections.

African Turquoise Gemstone

20140110_144318I think by now that everyone has had enough winter.  To help us think “spring” our stone of the month is beautiful African turquoise, a stone whose color will remind you of an idyllic time at the beach on a warm summer day.

African “Turquoise” is not true turquoise but rather a jasper that looks just like turquoise. It is mined in Africa and resembles turquoise in structure and shade.

Metaphysically, it is called a “stone of evolution” because it brings encouragement and develops positive change.  African turquoise can clarify expression and improve communication.  It also opens the mind to new ideas and possibilities. This stone is purported to be a good one for offering protection during travel.  African turquoise is also said to attract money and prosperity, while helping clarify one’s intended purpose in life.

Blue-Green Quartz Gemstone of the Month

Necklace of blue green quartz tumbled nuggets with pewter accents

Blue Green Quartz

This month’s gemstone of the month, blue-green quartz, belongs to the family of stones most often thought of when one thinks of crystals. Quartz encompasses many different types of stones in a great variety of colors.
The word quartz itself comes from the Greek word meaning “ice” because quartz crystals were thought to be ice formed by the gods.
Quartz is anenergy stone and also enhances thought. It is beneficial for those who need to store and retrieve information. It brings balance and harmony and can even enhance relationships.
Quartz can be used to drive away negative energy, provide clarity, and ensure purity. it protects the spirit and helps to retain information and aids concentration. It helps to retain what is learned

Health wise, quartz has many advantages. It stimulates the immune system and brings the body into equilibrium. It acts as a cleanser, enhances the organs and psyche alike.
It is supposed to be especially effective in dealing with fatigue, arthritis and depression.

April 2013 Gemstone of the Month – Crystal Quartz

Cherry Quartz, unlike Rose Quartz, is human-made by melting glass in a furnace and combining it with swirls of pink to give it its distinct color and infusions or needles. Because of its soft color, it has long been regarded as a soothing, calming crystal that promotes love and healing. It is said to help clear negative emotions such as jealousy, anger and fear, and also alleviate heartache and psychic traumas. Wearing cherry quartz at night might promote peaceful sleep and creative inspiration. And, of course, it’s a lovely color for a gift for Mother’s Day.

December 2012 Gemstone of the Month–Snowflake Obsidian

In addition to being quite beautiful, Snowflake Obsidian has many great characteristics. It is strongly protective and shields against negativity. It brings clarity of mind and clears confusion. It helps you to know yourself, and move on from outdated behavior. Also great at this holiday time, it promotes qualities of compassion and strength and calms and soothes.

Snowflake Obsidian is especially useful at this time of year for its ability to help in scrying–this is, seeing visions. Specifically, visions of sugarplums! And like Santa, nothing can be hidden from Snowflake Obsidian, as it has truth-enhancing, reflective qualities which help release wrong or stressful mental processes, very helpful at holiday time!

Originating in Mexico, Snowflake obsidian is a naturally occurring volcanic glass. It is formed when felsic* lava from a volcano cools without crystal growth. In addition to its use as a gemstone, it has been used in cardiac surgery; well-crafted obsidian blades have a cutting edge many times sharper than high-quality steel scalpels.

In addition to all these wonderful attributes and uses, Snowflake Obsidian is a stunningly beautiful gemstone, with white snow-flake like designs in deep black. So think about purchasing a piece of Snowflake Obsidian for yourself or someone you love. It will bring many advantages to whoever is lucky enough to wear it.

*In geology, felsic refers to silicate minerals, magma and rocks which are enriched with lighter elements such as silicon.

Mary Szakmeister

November 2012 Gemstone of the Month – Tiger Iron

Is the thought of Christmas shopping stressing you out?  Are you tired of wallowing in indecision about problems with kids, parents, in-laws, the dog?  November’s stone of the month will come to your rescue.  Tiger iron renews energy and gives you the support necessary to take action on all fronts.

Although its name may  not be as intriguing as Australian Dragon’s blood jade, Tiger Iron makes up for that in beauty.  It looks nothing like iron, rather it is steely silver, warm mahogany and chatoyant gold.

Quiz:  Who remembers what chatoyant means?  Hint: Check back to Tiger eye.

Relatively new to the gemstone market, Tiger Iron is a metamorphosed rock consisting of red jasper , tigereye and hematite . Billions of years ago deposits of these three parent stones were smashed together between shifting tectonic plates. The resulting stone has  distinctive bands of these three, a perfect complement to many earth-toned fashions. Deposits are found primarily in South Africa.

Tiger Iron is said to be beneficial for those who are deeply exhausted and drained by taking on other people’s feelings and emotions. It is also valuable for those suffering from emotional or mental burnout or family stress.

Tiger Iron encourages and supports change, giving you the energy to take necessary action. It is also a creative and artistic stone believed to bring out hidden talents and to help with creative endeavors.

So with the holidays looming, Tiger Iron is just the thing to wear to combat stress and exhaustion. Join us to make something for yourself or as a gift at one of our Bead with Us soirees.

Mary Szakmeister

October 2012 Gemstone of the Month – Labradorite

There is very good news about this month’s gemstone.  It purportedly detoxifies the body and slows down the aging process!  Bring it on!  As if that were not enough to get our total attention, it is useful when experiencing change, as it imparts strength and perseverance.  It is said to help with psychic abilities and revealing  the truth behind illusion.  In addition, it banishes fear and insecurities, strengthening faith in oneself and the universe. For those of an artistic bent, it stimulates the imagination, and for those who are too intense, it calms an overactive mind.

On the physical side, it is said to help the eyes and brain, and stimulate metabolism and balance.  No wonder it slows aging, it also lowers blood pressure.

Geologically, Labradorite is plagioclase feldspar which just means it’s a mineral within feldspar. The term comes from the Greek, meaning “oblique fracture” referring to its cleavage (in mineralogy, cleavage is the tendency of crystalline materials to split along definite  structural planes).

As its name would suggest, it was originally found at Paul’s Island, Labrador.  It was also found in WWII in Finland.  It has been found in some meteorites.

According to legend, when a wandering Eskimo freed the Northern Lights from imprisonment, a few were left trapped in the stone, giving today’s Labradorite its iridescence.  That iridescence gives it its other name, “Falcon’s Eye.”

And so, I close with, Good Luck! because that is what  this gorgeous iridescent gray stone is supposed to bring.

September 2012 Gemstone of the Month–Tiger’s Eye

The gemstone for September is Tiger’s Eye, and it has what every woman wants–chatoyancy! Chatoyancey means changeable luster–who can do without that? In the case of Tiger’s Eye, it has this iridescence because when its asbestos fibers are converted to iron oxide and then silica, its rich brown and golden colors are formed. It is a gem variety of quartz, a metamorphic rock found mainly in South Africa near diamond mines. It was once as valuable as diamonds.

As with the other stones of the month, Tiger’s Eye has many properties that bring advantages to the wearer. It is said to bring good luck and vitality. It promotes mental processes, which in turn help keep us objevtive. It helps in dealing with psychosomatic illnesses. It stabilizes mood swings and gives us courage and self-confidence. It is said to alleviate pain, release toxins and help in healing broken bones.

Tiger’s eye is a good luck stone, its rich golden color bringing increased wealth to the wearer. With its calming influence, its ability to bring passion and physical strength, tiger eye is a beautiful beneficial addition to your jewelry collection.

And since it can ward off dark magic, you’ll want to have a piece in time for Halloween! Join us to make a piece of jewelry for yourself or someone you care for.

Mary Szakmeister
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Australian Dragon's Blood

August 2012 Stone of the Month




Australian Dragon’s Blood: A serpentine mined out of Australia. “Dragon’s blood” refers to the red spots that are matrixed in the stone. Historically, in the 19th century, people became aware of the fire resistant nature of serpentine, as a result is was utilized in many materials and fabrics. According to legend, Romans used this stone as protection against sorcery and the dark arts.  Hardness: 6.5