Semi-precious Stone Designs
Phantom of the Crystal
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Large phantom crystal pendant, strung on two types of faceted smoky quartz, with Canadian nephrite and hematite accent beads, on knotted cord with silver clasp.
Phantom crystal is quartz that has other crystals inside. The inclusions here are chlorite.
Phantom crystal is sometimes used as an aid to meditation. Like gazing at clouds to see the shapes, this will also lead your imagination. There is even a rainbow that can be seen from certain angles.
Howlite How Heavy
( aka The Funky Nun )
Large rough carved howlite cross hanging from a long strand of yellow stone beads, strung on cord and fastening with a Bali silver clasp.
Howlite is very porous, and although in its natural state it is white with darker veins, it can be easily dyed to resemble other semi-precious stones. This piece is in very natural condition, having only been minimally carved and given no sophisticated polishing
The style of this cross reminded me of the large wooden rosaries that were carried in Medieval times, so I wanted to string it on a very simple necklace that made the cross the focus of attention. The length does make it a little heavy though. I therefore christened it "Howlite How Heavy", but when my friend said "it looks like something a funky nun would wear" I liked that name so much better.
Slice of Paradise
Brazilian agate slice with natural centre cavity, strung on necklace of ocean jasper and turquoise with tassel of glass and crystal seed beads Click picture for detailed view).
The agate slice was bought in Germany, but the design was inspired by a Hawaiian waterfall. Dropping from the lush green of the forest down a rocky cliff and ending in a cascade of ocean foam. There are even some tiny red beads, hibisvus flowers floating in the water.
Ocean or sea jasper is one variety of this stone that occurs in many different colours and patterns, agate is also a member of this chalcedony group.
Classical Chaos
Black onyx pendant hanging from a necklace of Botswana agate and vintage onyx spool beads. Strung on cord and fastening with a Bali silver toggle clasp. Click the picture to view close up of pendant.
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Onyx and agate are both members of the chalcedony family of minerals. Both these varieties are known for colour banding, which can give a beautiful effect when skilfully cut and polished.
The large onyx pendant has a very subtle pattern of white bands on one side. It reminded me of the edge of a fractal pattern, which led me to the name Classical Chaos.
Pounamu Pendant
Roughly polished slab of New Zealand jade, hanging from plaited waxed cotton cord embellished with tourmaline chips. Necklace fastens with a loop over a paua shell toggle.
New Zealand jade was called pounamu by the Maori, and was first used for stone tools and weapons. Its aesthetic qualities were also valued and it became an article of adornment. Pieces were worn strung from a flax cord or leather thong. Paua shell comes from the abalone which is harvested in New Zealand, the irridescent sheen makes it popular for jewelry and other decorative items.
In this design I have tried to retain the spirit of simplicity, but with a little extra twist to pick out the interesting colours of the main piece.
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Antique Jade Glass and Ceramic Beads