Gems

Amazing amber

In my history box, which is full of interesting things from my grandparents mostly, I found this photo of my grandmother, taken about 100 years ago in Entebbe. That’s my Mum, aged about 3, in all her little bare foot glory.  But the other thing that’s so important about this photo is the necklace my Grandmother is wearing which is …

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Give us a garnet..

When I was about 15 or 16 Mum worked at Elton’s Jewellers in Nairobi. I hung out there a lot and one of the in-house jewellers made me this little pinkie ring. The value was definately in the gold, but I chose this stone because I loved it – a purply-pink almandine garnet.  Three years later I graduated to my …

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First cousins

I was going through my archive photos the other day – because I have all the time in the world for things like that right now – looking at pictures of things we’ve made in the past and searching for inspiration for new designs, and noticed a recurring theme in the stones we use, namely labradorite. I don’t know anything …

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Back in the day…

This little brooch – which can also be worn as a pendant – is something I’ve been familiar with my whole life; it lived in Mum’s jewllery box and though I studied it closely as a young magpie, I never really paid attention to what it is, and then a conversation I had with Polly reminded me it existed and …

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A diamond in the rough

Being called ‘a diamond in the rough’ is actually quite a compliment because it infers that with a bit of work and a good polish, the end result will be a real gem. It’s also the truth about stones, of course.  I’ve watched more than one documentary on mining for gems and I’m always impressed that the miners can pick …

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How came the hoards?

Rooting through Polly’s library the other day I came across this book, and judging it by its cover – as you do – I took it out and started reading.  Of course I’ve heard of jewellery hoards, and particularly the Cheapside hoard, but the more I read the more I wanted to  know so I started digging a bit. I …

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Passion for Paraiba

We’re just back from Magpie Heaven – our first fair of the year which was in Chelsea at the old town hall – which is room after room of jewellers showing and selling their glittering, deicious work.  To my delight the lovely Julia Lloyd George was in the same room as us so at last I got a chance to …

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I’m an opalholic!

As a fully fledged magpie it stands to reason that I would love opals with their bright flashing colours and shiny surfaces, but until quite recently I hadn’t realised just how fabulous they are; then something happened that really piqued my interest about opals, and my mission began. A client bought an opal ring from us and a few months …

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Tantilizing Tanzanite

One of the most extraordinary stones – in my humble opinion, naturally – is the Tanzanite.  All stones come in a variety of colours, of course, but there’s just something about the range of colours in the Tanzanite that absolutely entrances me.  The mauve of a Tanzanite is incredibly difficult to photograph and get accurate; it’s a bit like trying …

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