We stepped away from the jeweler bench last week and headed to Tucson, AZ for an influx of all things jewelry, art, culture, and inspiration. Consider us ~refreshed~ and inspired! All of the sparkle and color you’re imagining, we saw. Starting the week not feeling 100%, I’m convinced all of that tea and all of the gemstone beauty really brought me back to health. Now let us take you a little deeper into this experience we get to call work!
We started with the gem shows admiring stunning, sparkly, Giant (we’re talking 100+ carats), and unique gemstones. All of the beauty had us picturing several different custom pieces that call for one-of-a-kind stones. These shows included different booths with impressive stone carvings, home goods, beads, and more. It’s moving to see things other than gemstones! We were amazed by the carved marble, giant rock sculptures and finding the perfect “pink rock” for my daughter (we landed on a dinosaur shaped pink rock and “Mom of the Year” is really holding ground).
There’s always more to learn so we jumped in on some seminars starting with gemstone and stone cutting. We watched the “journey of a gemstone” with each phase of an amethyst being cut into a radiant round. It was BRILLIANT! Onto the different tools and details such as the perfect angle of a diamond layer on the sanding stone (we’re talking preciiiiiise). We were taken back by how impressive art carvers are.
*100th tea break of the day*
We then went on to learn so much about responsible mining and sourcing from the wonderful Hayley Henning, former CCO of Greenland Ruby and Executive Director of the Tanzanite Foundation. Her talk, “Colored Gemstones Link People with Places” was proven more and more true the longer she spoke. Her career has taken her from the depths of the deepest mines in Africa, to the icy mountainous landscape in remote Greenland, where she worked closely with the gemstones exclusively from those regions. From her knowledge in location to the actual stone, she was informative and insightful into how colored gems are such great storytelling opportunities. And we couldn’t agree more!!!
After days of learning, antiquing, exploring, and eating great food (!!), we got to connect with industry friends and chit-chat about the joys and curves of this business. Back home now with stories to tell, knowledge to share and stones to place for our incredible clients. If you’re interested in having a specific type of stone sourced, we’d love to walk through that process with you!