Category: Spotlight

Amber “time capsule” necklace

I always love when there’s a great story behind a piece of jewellery.

This article from the Daily Mail shows a simple amber necklace that’s going up for auction that’s likely to fetch £10,000.  Why?  Because the beads are 40 million years old, containing fossilized ants, mosquitoes, and other ancient critters.

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Fossilized insects set in 40 million-year-old amber

What a fascinating piece of history to have!  I love amber, and I’d have a hard time parting with a unique piece like this, but the collector who buys it at auction will have an incredible necklace for their collection.

 

Photo courtesy the Daily Mail Online

Extreme Vintage: Ancient Jewellery

I love vintage shops, and I definitely have a taste for fashion from bygone days.  What’s not to love about a classic “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” cocktail dress or a sleek cloche hat? Vintage jewellery can be particularly fun- people have been making and wearing necklaces, earrings, bracelets and other adornments for years. Centuries. Thousands of years. But would you believe a hundred thousand years?

That’s right, archaeologists have found beads dating back 100,000 years.  The beads are small shells, and were excavated frome a site in Israel.  The find shows some interesting insight into ancient human culture and our ever-present desire to adorn ourselves with the beauty of nature.

 

World's oldest bead.  Image courtesy http://www.nhm.ac.uk
World’s oldest bead. Image courtesy http://www.nhm.ac.uk

The Tree of Life

Quartz Tree of Life pendant "Ice Storm"
Quartz Tree of Life pendant “Ice Storm”

The “Tree of Life” is a motif that has appeared in numerous cultures, religions and folklore. Typically, it appears as a leafy, healthy tree with a sturdy trunk and visible roots. It has represented a variety of concepts, including wisdom, healing, purity, and the threshold between life and death. In Norse mythology Yggdrasil, the world tree, supports the nine worlds and is the focus of numerous myths.

Around a year ago Drakestail started creating our own handmade Tree of Life pendants. Inspired by the depth of meaning and the soothing, earthy appearance, I decided to create a Tree of Life pendant for myself, initially using silver-plated wire and pale green jade chips. I love how it turned out, and wear it often. I got lots of positive comments about it, as well as requests! Since then I’ve created several permutations, using aventurine, carnelian, clear quartz and rose quartz to represent the Tree in different seasons. I’ve also worked some up with copper wire, to great effect. Using gemstone chips and twisting the trunks by hand, each pendant is unique.

 

Want to see more?  We have some Tree of Life pendants in stock right now on Etsy!

Carnelian Tree of Life pendant
Carnelian Tree of Life pendant “Autumn Maple”
Jade Tree of Life pendant
Jade Tree of Life pendant “Spring Buds”

The Top 5 Gemstones to Beat Winter Blues

It’s March.  Spring is around the corner.  By now a lot of people are feeling the effects of cabin fever.  I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for winter to be over!

Many people believe in the healing effects of gemstones.  Whether it’s metaphysical properties of the gems, or being inspired by the myriad colours, textures and sparkle of the stones, they certainly seem to have an effect on us.  So without further ado, here’s my top 5 list of gemstones that will help kick those winter blues. Click on any of the images to link to the matching Etsy post!

 

1. Citrine

Citrine "Sun Drops" necklace
Citrine "Sun Drops" necklace

Beat seasonal depression with bright, sunny citrine, November’s birthstone.  Citrine attracts positive energy, and is a stone that fosters joy, optimism, and hope.  As a bonus, citrine is also known as the stone of prosperity!

 

 

 

2. Carnelian

Carnelian and Amber "Pele's Tear"
Carnelian and Amber "Pele's Tear" on Etsy!

Carnelian is said to encourage initiative and stimulate creativity.  It boosts inner concentration and replaces negative energy with positive.

 

 

 

 

3. Lapis Lazuli

Lapis coin earrings
Lapis coin earrings on Etsy

Suffering from a little cabin fever?  Lapis lazuli is reported to release stress and bring inner peace and tranquility.

 

 

 

 

4. Garnet

Garnet and Smoky Quartz necklace
Garnet and Smoky Quartz necklace

If winter leaves you hiding inside, try wearing some garnet, January’s birthstone.  Garnet negates loneliness and isolation, and is the stone of passion and courage.  It also helps bring out your best qualities for others to see.

 

 

 

5. Aventurine

Aventurine Tree of Life pendant
Aventurine Tree of Life pendant on Etsy!

Feeling irritable?  Try wearing soothing aventurine.  This soft green gemstone relieves anxiety and calms the emotions.  It is also said to draw opportunities to its bearer.

 

 

 

 

Happy New Year, and a great link

I hope your new year has gotten off to a great start, and that 2012 is everything you’d hoped for, and more.

I love to read jewellery blogs and learn about techniques, fashion, and materials.  I came across a wonderful blog posted on Ganoksin, a website devoted to goldsmithing and other jewellery creation.  The particular post that caught my eye was one on the history of Peridot, the gemstone for August.  Since I couldn’t possibly say it better myself, here is the link: The Story of Peridot.

Enjoy!

Spotlight: All Saints Catholic High School Charity Fundraiser

Our next show will take place at the All Saints Catholic High School (map here) on Saturday, November 5th, 2011, from 9am-3pm. This annual craft fair show is now in its 10th year and has become quite popular. There will be over 100 vendors selling their handmade treasures from around the region.

There will be performances by talented student musicians, as well as a café, a supervised children’s play area, raffle prizes, and lots more! Admission is $1, or a donation of a non-perishable item.

From the organizer:

“Funds raised from the Craft Fair support our school’s Christmas Hamper program which coordinates with the Kanata Food Cupboard. As well, this year we are supporting Grands & Friends – a group affiliated with the Stephen Lewis Foundation’s Grandmother to Grandmother Campaign. This is a group of Ottawa and area women who work to raise awareness, funds and advocate for the Grandmothers of Africa who are raising millions of orphaned children in sub-Sahara Africa due to the AIDS/HIV pandemic. These women are courageous and are giving new hope to their communities and changing the future for many but they need us to lend our voices and to support their efforts.”

Hope to see you there!

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