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jade hookSAVE 20% WITH SAVE20 COUPON for this and anything else in the shop. This is a lovely hand-carved pendant of natural Nephrite Jade from New Zealand. The hei matu, or fish hook, has endured since pre-colonial times (prior to the 18th century) and symbolizes abundance, and a respect for sea. The design represents the special relationship Maori people have with fishing (historically they lived from fisheries and depended on the sea for food gathering) and Tangaroa, god of the sea. Designs range from the ultra-realistic through to more conceptual styles, and wearing one is said to bring good fortune when traveling across oceans.

This beautiful piece measures approx. 45 mm long (approx.. 1 3/4") x approx. 23 mm. (just shy of 1") at its widest point. Thickness is approx. 3 mm. Hole at top for hanging is approx. 3 mm. wide.

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diamond beads 2For jewelry designers and beaders, diamond beads can be an amazing treat and versatile element to work with. They add sparkle and elegance to any design, and can be found in a much greater variety and at lower cost than ever before. The majority of these diamond beads are made from exotic colorful diamonds that are cut and faceted in India.

In the past, colorless diamonds were the only type readily available to the public. Now, they can be obtained in over 300 colors, and some are actually more rare than colorless diamonds. Some of the most famous diamonds in history, like the Hope Diamond (which is violet), have been colored diamonds. (See our previous post D is for Diamond Beads for a bit more info on this subject.)

black rough diamond bead braceletDiamonds are carbon-based gems, and are the hardest substance known today, in the company of rubies, emeralds, and sapphires, which also exceed a rating of 7 on the Mohs hardness scale. It has been estimated that 250 tons of minerals need to be excavated to find just one carat of diamond, so that is one reason –besides their beauty – that they are so precious.

Black diamonds are particularly intriguing and many are believed to have been formed by meteor impacts. Their coloration comes from mineral inclusions such as iron oxides -- magnetite, hematite, or sulfide compounds. Because their coloration is caused by inclusions rather than impurities, black diamonds have wonderful reflective qualities and a beautiful sparkle.

You can also find diamond beads in platinum gray, cognac brown, canary yellow, champagne, citrus and other colors. Note that Herkimer diamonds are not diamonds – you can read more about these here, though, in a previous post, Herkimer Diamond Beads.

Natural (non-treated, non-enhanced) diamonds are growing in popularity among designers and people who love beautiful gems. They have their own special personality, and can be found in many shapes – from intriguing rough-cut nuggets, to faceted rondelles, briolettes, rose cut, and more. Many of these are surprisingly affordable, and they will add a natural luxury to your designs.

bohemian black diamond necklace bead 2I’ve featured just a few examples of work by Etsy artisans featuring diamond beads, to get you thinking. From top to bottom are:

From EllaArtisanJewelry, a dainty diamond bead bracelet;

From BohemianSageJewelry, a black diamond and rosary chain necklace with OM pendant;

and from JewelLUXE, a raw diamond bar necklace.

raw diamond bar necklace bead 2You may want to peruse shops from a couple of my favorite diamond bead suppliers on Etsy.

Kalijewelart, offering wholesale rough diamond gemstones and beads, and

GemsforJewels, offering wholesale gemstone beads and raw, rough diamonds.

Elsewhere, Gemone Diamonds offers options for more affordable single or smaller sets of beads, as well as brilliant strands for the more adventurous.

 

Until Next Time,

Sheila

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