( French for ornamenting, adorning)

    is a set of jewellery matching in materials used, meant to be worn together.

    Such sets often include a necklace, earrings, brooch, bracelet or bracelets and ring, but could also include hair ornaments, pendants, belt etc.

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    is a high content leaded glass which is faceted to imitate diamonds or backed with colored foils to imitate other gemstones.

    Also known as strass after Frederic Strass who invented this method in the 18th century.

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    a.k.a. glass paste, is glass that is ground into a paste, molded, and then melted. The final piece is an opaque, dense glass with a frosted surface.

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    is the name for a particular coloration change in a surface layer of metal object's that occurs from long exposure to the atmosphere and from aging.
    Exposure to the air for an extended period of time oxidizes many metals, turning copper and bronze green, and gold reddish.

    Artificial patinas can be applied to newer objects by using acids or electrolytes.

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    pronounced PAH-WAH, a.k.a. Sea Opal
    is a mollusc found exclusively in New Zealand waters. colorful, highly iridescent mother-of-pearl nacre makes the paua shell unique among the world's (± 130) abalone varieties.

    The outside of the shell is dull brown, the pretty part of the shell is on the inside.

    Although Paua's raw shell is bluer than any other abalone variety, the natural colors are generally more varied, and may include blue, green, purple, pink, yellow, orange, and white.

    Paua shell cabochons and beads as seen in jewellery shops nowadays are often a brilliant, shining blue. These specimens are dyed blue and capped with clear blue acrylic.

    It was a prize food of the Maori (the native people of New Zealand) and today is still actively sought after as a delicacy for both local consumption and for export.

    Alleged metaphysical properties

    Crystal healers use abalone specimens for a large variety of purposes.

    It has long been believed that the many shimmering colors of the paua shell balance and align the chakras of the human body, and especially strengthening the heart chakra.

    Paua is considered to be a valuable healing tool when treating emotional disorders. It is believed to facilitate calmness and soothing in times of emotional stress.

    It is said to help increase one's trust in life, the ability to open up and let-go of worries and fears. It encourages cooperation between ourselves and others.

    It is considered to stimulate intuition, imagination and creativity.

    On a psychical level crystal healers use this beautiful iridescent shell to help strengthen the immune system, the heart, the joints, bones, and muscle tissues.

    Finally, as all shells, paua is said to bring boundless growth in life and thought.

    See: abalone

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    are a type of black pearls with a dark-green sheen.

    These pearls (like all black pearls) are produced by the oyster Pinctada margaritifera.

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    is an organic gem distinguished by its iridescence and luster, as well as by a delicate play of surface color.
    Pearls grow within oysters and a few other molluscs; they are formed when a foreign object (like a tiny stone) has made its way into the mollusc's shell.

    The mollusc secretes nacre, a lustrous substance that coats the intruding object.

    As thousands of layers of nacre coat the intruder, a pearl is formed; this process takes up anywhere from four months to seven or eight years (an oyster's useful life span).

    The longer the process, the bigger the pearl.

    A single mollusc can create dozens of pearls at a time, depending on how many particles enter the shell.

    Pearl color. varies with the type of mollusc, its diet and its environment.

    Although usually pale white in color, pearls can be found in black, gray, blue, mauve, green lavender, pink, yellow, cream or bright white color.

    Factors that affect value are the regularity of the shape, size, color., luster and lack of surface flaw.

    Among those attributes, luster is the most important differentiator of pearl quality (according to jewellers).

    Pearls are among the world's softest gemstones ( hardness of 2.5), yet the surface of a natural pearl is slightly rough to the touch.

    There are many types of pearls, including natural pearls, cultured pearls, Biwa pearls, baroque pearls, blister pearls, Mabe pearls (cultivated blister pearls), seed pearl, etc.

    The most valuable pearls are perfectly symmetrical, large, naturally produced, and have a shimmering iridescence (called orient luster).

    Saltwater pearls are commonly known as Oriental pearls and those produced by freshwater molluscs are called freshwater pearls.

    Pearls were once important financial assets, comparable in price to real estate, as thousands of oysters had to be searched to find a single pearl.

    They were rare because they were created only by chance.

    The biggest natural pearl, known as the "Pearl of Allah" or "Pearl of Lao-tse," weighs 14 pounds (6.4 kg).

    Natural pearls are very rare (and valuable!), so the word "pearl" should be assumed as "cultured pearl" unless otherwise noted.

    Today nearly all pearls available on the market are cultured. It is interesting to note that only one out of four cultivated oysters lives to create a marketable pearl.

    The finest oriental pearls are found in the Persian Gulf.

    Most cultured fine pearls are produced in Japan and China. In the warmer waters of the South Pacific, large Tahitian black pearls are cultured.

    They are also produced in Scotland, Norway, Australia, Indonesia, Philippines, USA, Mexico and Burma.

    It was Japan that cultured the first fully shaped freshwater pearls after experimenting with freshwater mussels in Lake Biwa, a large lake near Kyoto.
    The first commercial freshwater pearl crops appeared in the 1930s, and became instantly sought, as the all-nacre Biwa pearls formed in colors unseen in saltwater pearls.

    Their luster and luminescence rivaled natural pearls because they, too, were pearls throughout.

    Pearls are often bleached to improve their whiteness - this permanent enhancement provides a more uniform appearance.

    As a rule of thumb, all bright or striking pearl colors are dyed and/or enhanced.

    Dyes are being used to produce any pearl color., which makes it easier (and therefore less expensive) to create matched strands. However, dyes can fade over time.

    Irradiation (applying gamma rays to a stone) darkens the nucleus to produce darker pearls, like blues, grays and blacks, and most experts believe the treatment to be permanent.

    Metallic pearl colors are often gamma-ray irradiated. In some cases, they are irradiated and dyed.

    Pearls are are a natural, extremely porous substance, softer and less durable than most gems.
    Therefore, a special care is needed to keep their shiny iridescent luster intact, and ensure that your pearls will stay in mint condition and last for many years.

    First and foremost - try to keep them away from chemicals as much as possible.

    Make sure they do not absorb any make-up, lotions, perfume, hairspray and other aggressive substances that accelerate its deterioration.

    Avoid exposing pearls to extreme dryness, extreme humidity or direct sunlight for a longer period of time.

    It would be advisable to wipe your pearls with a dry, lint-free cloth every time after taking it off, and before storing it.

    It is best to store pearl jewellery in a separate silk or felt pouches, away from contact with metals or harder stones that might damage them. Never store them in plastic, as it will seal out air.

    It is best to gently clean pearls with mild soap and water and dry flat on an absorbent, soft (and preferably lint-free) towel. Do not use any jewellery cleaners.

    Another great way to take care of pearls is to wear them. The mild humidity and the oils from your skin help keep the pearls from drying out.

    Alleged metaphysical properties

    Pearls were once thought to be the tears of God.

    Because of their natural beauty, their shape, and the way they come into existence, pearls represent a mysterious connection between the moon and the sea.

    They are associated with the matrix of life and symbolize our spiritual journey; a small grain of sand, continually working on itself, until complete.

    Pearls are reputed to encourage constructive self-reflection, while facilitating personal integrity and inner wisdom.

    Among crystal healers today pearl is sometimes referred to as the "Queen Gem" (and diamond as the "King Gem").

    Pearls represent purity, trust, innocence and compassion. They are said to promote truth, sincerity, loyalty, success and happiness.

    It is believed that pearls can aid in balancing emotions, and help one to feel, give and accept love.

    On a physical level too pearls are well know to have a strong healing power.

    From ancient China and India to medieval Europe and Arabia -- and in almost every culture in between -- pearls have been used for medicinal purposes ranging from aphrodisiacs to cures for insanity.

    Simply worn as jewellery for their curative powers; or grounded up and made into potions, balms, and salves pearls are used to treat a wide variety of ailments and conditions such as

    cancers of the digestive system, memory loss, insomnia, asthma, liver ailments, heart problems, infertility, insect or snake bites. eye ailments, intestinal tract problems, bleeding, poisoning, fever and headaches including migraines.

    Crystal healers today believe that pearls help strengthen the nerves, adrenal glands, spleen and muscular system.

    Pearls are also thought to increase fertility and ease the pain of childbirth.

    Some healers believe that drinking pearl water tonic (water that has been used to soak pearls or pearl powder) will help boost vitality, balance bodily rhythms and hormonal levels with lunar cycles, and improve eyesight.

    The modern pharmaceutical industry nowadays continues to use pearls in medicine.

    In particular, pearls which are of inferior quality and cannot be used in jewellery are ground into a fine powder and used to prepare high-quality pharmaceutical calcium.

    In ancient times pearls were considered sacred.

    In India, pearls were believed to give peace of mind and strength of body and soul.

    In Hindu culture, a part of the traditional marriage ceremony includes the presentation of an un-drilled pearl and its ritual piercing.

    Hindu religious texts say that Krishna discovered the first pearl, which he presented to his daughter on her wedding day.

    Islamic tradition holds pearls in even higher regard. The Koran speaks of pearls as one of the great rewards found in Paradise, and the gem itself has become a symbol of perfection.

    The Chinese used pearls in medicinal ways to cure eye ailments, heart trouble, indigestion, fever and bleeding.

    To this day pearl powder is still popular in China as a skin whitener and cosmetic.

    In the 13th century Europeans thought that swallowing whole or powdered pearls cured mental illness and heart break. Christianity also adopted the pearl as a symbol of purity.

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    is the biggest known natural pearl.
     It is not a gem-quality pearl, it is a non-nacreous pearl, without the iridescence of pearls that come from oysters and mussels.

    it is what is known as a "clam pearl" or "Tridacna pearl" because it was formed inside a giant clam, Tridacna gigas, the only mollusc big enough to create such a giant.

    It measures 24 centimeters in diameter (9.45 inches) and weighs 6.4 kilograms (14.1 lb). It is an interesting piece of natural history surrounded by extraordinary stories and legends.

    The pearl is not on display to the public and is presently owned in three equal shares by the heirs of Joe Bonicelli, Peter Hoffman, and Victor Barbish.

    Gemologist Michael Steenrod in Colorado Springs has appraised the pearl at $93 million (2007).

    Though the appraisals are suspect, the Pearl does have value by uniqueness.

    It was found off the Philippine island of Palawan in 1934.

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    a.k.a. Tabasheer or tabashir opal
    is an organic stone that forms in damaged joints (nodes) of bamboo plants. This hydrated form of silica appears as a rounded mass of opal, and looks like seed pearls.

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    is a movable ornament that hangs suspended from another device such as chain or another part of the same ornament. Necklaces, pins, and earrings often have a pendant.

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    is a beautiful, transparent yellow-green gemstone, a form of olivine composed of magnesium iron silicate.
    The color. of this stone is mainly dependent on the amount of ferrous iron present.

    Italian peridot is olive in color. while American peridot is a light yellow-green, for example.

    Peridot is created under great temperatures and pressures deep within the Earth and sometimes is extruded in basaltic lavas.

    It has even been found in meteorites. Occasionally, its crystals are found on the black sands of Hawaii.

    Peridot exhibits what is called double refraction - when you look through the stone, things appear double.

    Occasionally peridot is treated with colorless oil, wax and natural or synthetic unhardened resins, which are placed into voids to improve appearance.

    Surface fractures are sometimes filled with a colorless hardened substance. It is safe to assume that any inexpensive peridot is treated in one of these ways.

    Peridot has a hardness of 6.5.

    Major sources are found in Egypt, Brazil, Pakistan, Italy, Norway, China, Australia and USA.

    Peridot mining dates back about 4,000 years. Valuable peridots have been excavated in Egypt and faceted stones have been found in the ruins of ancient Greece.

    In Roman times, it was known as "evening emerald," since peridot has the property of keeping its green color even in weak light.

    It is said to have been the favourite gemstone of Cleopatra.

    Hawaiian legend holds that peridot is the goddess Pele's tears.

    The relative softness of peridot requires special care and handling: it is susceptible to acids, particularly hydrochloric and sulphuric, which will remove a gemstone's polish surprisingly quickly.

    Quick temperature changes, scratches and sharp blows also should be avoided.

    Do not clean peridot in a home ultrasonic cleaner.

    Alleged metaphysical properties

    Known as the "Let Go" stone, peridot is believed to help one release deeply suppressed traumas, and transform negative emotions and hurt feelings into more positive energy.

    Peridot is said to be used to help dreams become a reality.

    It is said to inspire happiness and improve one's sense of well being. Many believe it to increase patience, confidence and assertiveness, inspire verbal expression and speech, increasing its eloquence and removing impediments.

    Peridot is thought to be a good anti-toxin gem, it protects, purifies, strengthens and regenerates.

    The stone is said to help slow the aging process, physically and mentally.

    On a physical level peridot is reputed to strengthen the heart and lungs, and to facilitate the birthing process.

    Some crystal healers believe that peridot should be removed from the body before any chakra work, as it is said to place a seal around the chakras.

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    a.k.a. xyloid jasper or jasperized wood
    is a fossilized wood, a type of fossil, in which the tissues of a dead plant are replaced with minerals (most often a silicate, like quartz).
    The petrifaction process occurs underground, when wood or woody materials suddenly become buried under sediment.

    Mineral-rich water flowing through the sediment deposits minerals in the plant's cells and as the plant's lignin and cellulose decays away, a stone cast is left in its place.

    Petrified wood can be extremely detailed, often reflecting the internal structures of the plant from which they form.

    Structures such as tree rings and vascular tissues such as xylem are often observed features.

    Petrified wood has a Mohs hardness level of 7, the same as quartz.

    Petrified palm wood is the fossilized wood of palm trees from the Oligocene Epoch, about 20 to 40 million years ago.

    The stone contains prominent, rod like structures within the regular grain of the silicified wood, which form the characteristic spotted look of palm wood.

    Depending on how the stone is cut, these structures show up as spots, tapering rods or lines.

    Petrified palm wood is very hard and takes an excellent polish, making it a great stone for jewellery.

    The main source of this stone is found in USA.

    Alleged metaphysical properties

    Petrified wood is said to have a protecting and grounding effect on its wearer.

    It strengthens and regenerates. It is believed that petrified wood promotes joy of life and self-development, assists in karmic evaluation, and promotes longevity.

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    is a beading stitch in which beads are stitched in an undulating honeycomb pattern that can be flat, circular, or tubular; currently popular for sculpting around a base.

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    is fluorescence that continues for a while (however short) after the ultraviolet light source is turned off.

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  • PIN

    is any ornamental brooch worn by piercing the clothing with its attached pointed pin stem which is then locked in place by a closing device.

    It may have a functional purpose, such as holding clothing together, or purely decorative.

    Pins are also used to support other pendant ornaments,and to hold the hair, a hat or tie in place.

    The term also refers specifically to the pin itself, termed the pin stem.

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    artificial leather cord; almost better than the real thing, this material doesn't leave color traces on the skin; it is supple, flexible, durable.

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    is an enameling technique similar to cloisonné , but with the metal base removed so that light can pass through the translucent enamel, creating a stained glass effect.
    Cells of enamel are surrounded by delicate wire. Plique à jour is made by shaping cloisonné wire on a thin sheet of metal (or mica).

    Enamel (powdered glass) is fired into the wire cells.

    After the enamel has melted and cooled, the backing (metal or mica) is peeled away and the translucent enamel is left suspended in a supporting framework of cloisonné wire.

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    is a hard, white, translucent ceramic made by firing a pure clay and then glazing it with variously colored fusible materials.
    Porcelain is often used in jewellery. It is covered with a glassy, decorative glaze.

    Porcelain is typically biscuit fired at around 1000°C or (1800/2,000°F, and glaze fired (the final firing) at around 1300°C or 2300°F.

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    are stones that have tiny holes in them.

    These holes allow water, oils, and other substances to penetrate the stone, frequently changing their appearance over time.

    Many stones are porous, including turquoise.

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  • POST

    is a type of earring finding.

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    is potassium carbonate. It is an alternative to soda as a source of alkali in the manufacture of glass.

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    is a jewellery technique in which glass is suspended within a metal framework. The result is a stained-glass-like effect with translucent glass.

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    are beads used for prayer.

    In different religious tradition they are know under different names.

    The number and shape of beads and the significance of materials used is unique to each faith, but their function is the same in all these faiths - to count devotions.
    The earliest use of prayer beads is traced to India. Devotional beads are central to the Hindu life and are used for centuries.

    It is possible that the use of prayer beads dates back to the eighth century BC.

    Initially, this trend spread to the East, then Middle East, and finally Europe.

    Missionaries and explorers were the catalyst in that process.

    Hindu and buddhist prayer beads are called mala. A mala is made from the beads carved out of rudraksha tree, the sacred Bodhi tree or the tulsi or holy basil tree.

    Tibetans malas may contain beads of coral, shell, ivory, amber, turquoise and other stones.

    The most treasured prayer beads of Tibetan buddhists are made of the bones of dead holy men and lamas.

    The prayer beads of Japanese buddhists usually contain 112 beads. The name for those beads is "SHOZOIKI JIU-DSU".

    The number of beads on a Indian buddhist mala strand varies but is usually 108.

    The number of beads, 108, corresponds to the number of mental conditions or sinful desires that the devotee must overcome in order to reach nirvana or heaven.

    Tibetan rosaries usually contain 108 beads divided by three large beads. The end pieces include the "djore" or thunderbolt and the "drilbu" or bell.

    These end beads represent the Buddha, the doctrine, and the community.

    The end pieces plus the three large beads divides the whole into 27 bead sections.

    Attached to the main strand are two smaller strings of beads.

    Additionally, Tibetans may attach personal items of keys, favourite ancestral beads, tweezers, and files, with the counter beads.

    In Muslim tradition prayer beads are called "Subha", which means, "to exalt".

    Subha consist of 99-bead strand; each bead representing one of the 99 names of Allah, and his attributes. The rosary is divided into 33 bead sections by marker beads.

    The 100th bead is known as 'leader bead' ; it symbolizes the 'full circle', and finishing of one cycle of devotion whereupon 'Allah' is pronounced.

    Coming out of the leader bead there are overhanging cords with two attached beads and a tassel. The dangling parts are supposed to ward off the evil spirits.

    Any material from precious stones to wood is used in constructing prayer beads but the preferred material is clay from the holy cities of Mecca or Medina.

    Judaism rejects rosaries because of the talismanic inferences and the belief one must address God directly.

    For more info on Christian prayer beads see rosary.

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    is sterling silver, gold or gold filled wire used for beadwork constructing, wire wrapping, crocheting, chain making, and for making of jewellery findings.

    It is available in various hardnesses: dead soft (easily bent and manipulated, it does not hold its shape); half hard and full hard (hold it's shape , excellent for clasps).

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    is any of several gems, including the diamond, emerald, ruby, and sapphire, that are valuable because of their rarity, appearance and/or metaphysical properties. See gemstone

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    are made by pressing molten glass into a mould or through a shaping plate (like a play-dough machine).

    Pressed glass beads often have faint seams from the molding process, but are very regular in shape and design.

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    a.k.a. Marcasite
    is an opaque, shiny mineral with metallic luster that is a form of iron sulphide.
    It forms predominately in cubes, pyritohedrons, sometimes octahedral and more rarely, distorted octahedral crystals.

    It is also seen in the druzy formation and often as inclusions inside quartz.

    Fairly dark yellow in color pyrite is a magnetic mineral that has a vast number of forms and varieties.

    Pyrite is named for the Greek word pyr, or "fire," as it produces sparks when struck with steel. It is a very abundant mineral found world wide.

    The hardness is around 6.5 and the specific gravity is around 5.

    The refractive index is very high and over the limits of a refractometer.

    It has been used in jewellery and ornamentation for thousands of years.

    The gem trade often mistakenly calls pyrite "marcasite," and although the mineral marcasite has the same chemical composition as pyrite, it crystallizes in a different crystal system.

    Alleged metaphysical properties

    Pyrite is considered a highly protective stone, it possesses a defending quality and helps to keep away all forms of negative vibrations from people, places and things. 

    It influences a more positive outlook on life and greater understanding.

    It has been said to encourage creativity, and open the channels between the left and right hemispheres of the brain.

    Today, pyrite is used among crystal healers to stimulate intelligence, mental stability, logic and analytical ability.

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