Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The AUTUMN COLLECTION - Holloween Merryment !

White, black and gold make the Lampwork beads stand out in the center of this necklace.

The Lampwork beads are paired with black Agate (Onyx) rondells and light yellow Czech Crystals.
The Toggle clasp is polished pewter on the 19 inch necklace.
Silver plate French Hook gangle earrings complete the set.

Lampworking is a type of glasswork that uses a gas fueled torch to melt rods and tubes of clear and colored glass. Once in a molten state, the glass is formed by blowing and shaping with tools and hand movements. It was also known as flameworking or torchworking, but the modern practice no longer uses oil-fueled lamps. Although the art form has been practiced since ancient Syrian (1 Century B.C.E.) times, it became widely practiced in Murano, Italy in the 14th century. In the mid 19th century lampwork technique was extended to the production of paperweights, primarily in France, where it became a popular art form, still collected today. Lampworking differs from glassblowing in that glassblowing uses a blowpipe to inflate a glass blob known as a gob or gather, whereas lampworking manipulates glass either by the use of tools, gravity, or by blowing directly into the end of a glass tube.

Tiger's eye (also called Tigers eye or Tiger eye) is a chatoyant gemstone that is usually a metamorphic rock that is a golden to red-brown color, with a silky luster. A member of the quartz group, it is a classic example of pseudomorphous replacement by silica of fibrous Crocidolite (blue asbestos). An incompletely silicified blue variant is called Hawk's Eye. The gems are usually cut as cabochons in order to best display their chatoyancy. Red stones are brought about through gentle heat treatment. Dark stones have had their colors improved and been artificially lightened using nitric acid treatments. Honey-colored stones have been used to imitate the much higher valued cat's eye Chrysoberyl (cymophane), but the overall effect is unconvincing. In addition artificial fiberoptic glass is a common imitation of Tiger's Eye, and is produced in a wide range of colors. Tiger's Eye mostly comes from South Africa and East Asia. Don't confuse Tiger's Eye and Tiger Iron. Tiger iron is an altered rock composed chiefly of Tiger's eye, red Jasper, and black Hematite. The undulating, contrasting bands of color and luster make for an attractive motif, and it is mainly used for jewelry-making and ornamentation. Tiger iron is mined primarily in South Africa and Western Australia.

Black Agate (Onyx) which is truely a died black Agate, is more common and perhaps the most famous variety, but not as common as natural Onyx. Onyx is a crypyocrystalline form of Quartz. The colors of its bands range from white to almost every color (save some shades, such as purple or blue). A picture of a true Black Onyx specimum is seen below. True specimens of Onyx contain bands of colors of white, tan, and brown. As stated, the pure black form which most people know as Onyx, is not a naturally occuring variety. Black Agate or poorly colored Onyx is heated and dyed black to come up with the pure black form so well liked within the jewelry industry.