Posted December 19, 2014
Pearl and Stone Guide
Claudia uses cultured freshwater pearls in all her designs. We are sometimes asked if these are ‘real’ pearls. The answer is yes, they are made in the same way a natural pearl is, the difference is that in a cultured pearl, the irritant is introduced by man rather than nature.
Each pearl is a work of art taking years to form; every pearl is unique in colour, lustre, size and shape. The characteristic of each pearl depends on the mollusc and its environment; these individual characteristics should not be mistaken for imperfections or flaws.
The pearl is the birthstone for June and pearl jewellery is traditionally given to mark the 3rd and 30th wedding anniversary.
White and Pink Pearls
The white and pink pearls Claudia uses in her designs are presented in their natural colour
Peacock and Silver Pearls
The colour of the peacock and silver pearls Claudia uses in her designs is achieved using a heat treatment that creates a chemical reaction in the pearl. This colour is permanent and will not fade.
It is increasingly hard to find good quality dyed pearls. The demand for white pearls is such that the pearls selected for dyeing are predominantly of a lower grade. We only use coloured pearls that have a high quality lustre, shape and weight, so our coloured pearls are in limited supply.
Rose quartz is a quartz crystal that owes its pink hue to the presence of several minerals. The colour ranges from very pale to deep fresh pink. Claudia favours the pale pink quartz for her designs.
Believed to bring love, it represents kindness, caring and forgiveness. A stone of romance, rose quartz is said to promote love and improve one's self confidence. Rose quartz has long been a favourite with Claudia and collectors of her designs. It features in our summer collections and is a key stone in our Camellia necklace and features in the Kate necklace and earrings.
Drusy is a layer of minute quartz crystals that have crystallized on the surface of another gemstone or mineral. The gem is believed to stabilizing the aura and to help in clear, pragmatic and creative thinking.
The moonstone is associated with the moon and was the stone of the goddess Diana. Throughout history It has been worn as an amulet to bring good emotions to the wearer, while protecting those of a sensitive nature. Moonstone is also considered a good luck stone.
The moonstones Claudia uses are sourced in India and display the subtle grey/beige tones that are typical of moonstone from that region. Our Winter wonderland necklace and earrings feature grey moonstone.
The meaning of the name of this stone relates to the Amazon River, as it is a location where there are considerable deposits of the stone. Amazonite is also found in Madagascar, Russia, Canada, Namibia, Mozambique, India, Brazil and the USA.This blue-green crystal is an extremely soothing and calming stone, and varies in colour from milky blue through to darker greeny blue.
Claudia has used amazonite in the Camellia necklace
Pyrite is a disulphide of iron, and the metallic crystal grows in cubes, nodules, masses of tiny crystals, and can even be found as flat discs. It has been used in the jewellery industry for thousands of years, specimens have been found in ancient civilizations of the Greeks, Romans and the Incas.
Claudia mixes tiny faceted coated pyrite beads with a single pearl in our Lucia designs, which both complement and contrast with each other beautifully.
Labradorite is treasured for its remarkable play of colour, known as labradorescence. It was first discovered in Labrador, Canada, by Moravian missionaries in 1770 who named it for the area. It became a popular gem in Europe in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
The versatility of labradorite makes it a popular stone choice for Claudia and it is the feature stone of the Twilight earrings
Black spinel is not well-known among the gem world, yet its outstanding features make it the ideal choice for an opaque black gem. These days, where most gems undergo routine enhancement treatments, black spinel can stand proud as a gem requiring nothing more than cutting and polishing to bring out its inner beauty.
There is a wealth of mythology surrounding black spinel. It is believed to protect its owner from harm, to reconcile differences, and to console sadness. Some say that black spinel is the stone for people born on Saturday and it is the recommended gift for the 22nd wedding anniversary.
Garnet, the January birthstone, derived its name from the Latin word granatus, meaning like a grain. The use of red garnet dates back thousands of years, when it was used by Egyptian pharaohs for both decorative and ceremonial purposes. The ancient Romans also wore garnet rings and traded garnet gemstones. Claudia has used garnet in this season's Firecracker necklace and earrings
RECOMMENDED CARE OF YOUR PEARL JEWELLERY
We recommend that your pearls and beads should be re-strung every 12 months to avoid accidental breakage from wear and tear.
You must not wet your pearls (especially in swimming pools, the shower, etc)
Avoid wet perfume near pearls as this will damage them.
Make sure your pearls are put away when you are using any hair sprays as this will damage them.
Always store your pearls in the Claudia Bradby Jewellery pouch they were supplied in when not in use.