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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Day 6 Free Gemstone Cabochon Giveaway

 Scroll down for Tuesday's winner
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Well, hello again. :) Today is a kind of mish mash day because I have no idea what kind of rock today's stone is. I fell in love with it, though. It is very unusual as you can see.

Mystery slab

What you see in the picture, is a slice of the full size of the rock. This came to me from a woman who also called it a mystery. It was given to her as a mystery. It is from Arizona and that's all I know.



After working with it, I can say it is fairly soft and it didn't take a hard polish. It's still a wonderful cab, though. Lots of stones don't take that liquid shine like most agates do.

We work with many stones that are a combination of many things. We use names for stones that make it easier to discuss them. Those general names, like jasper and agate, are merely the tip of the ice berg and only scratch the surface of identification. I won't even try to break things down for you because I don't even understand it all myself. Classifying a rock is not always an easy endeavor. I plan to spend some time investigating this one, just for the sake of curiosity and practice.

A great place to start learning how ID a rock is this informative site and specific page. I have used the Mineral Identification Key page to learn how to properly describe the characteristics of a stone when discussing a possible ID. What at first seems too daunting and maybe pointless is actually not so complicated and, when cabbing your own stones, becomes important information to know. One can learn the hardness of the rock- the Moh's hardness of it to determine how it should be handled. Would it make a good ring stone? Is it too soft to wire wrap? Is it hard enough to withstand a groove wrap? These are just a few questions answered by knowing the hardness.

To describe a rock in it's entirety and come closer to identifying it there is a whole list of characteristics to test for. Most of them we can forget about for our purposes as jewelers. For example, most of us don't have a geiger counter to test radioactivity. But, check out that page I linked to and see for yourself that are some pretty simple things we can do.

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Today, I am going to do some cabbing. My son and I got some preforms done and I got some pictures for you of that process.




This is a Skilsaw wet tile saw. It has a 7" diamond tipped blade. It looks real intimidating, yet it is quite safe to use. You can get real close to the blade and even touch it or accidentally bump it and not get cut. It seems fantastical, but it's true. (However- I'm not advocating that you put your hand across the moving the blade or anything stupid like that.) The saw blade has a reservoir of water beneath it that keeps it spitting water over the wheel which cools and lubricate the stone and blade. It's fairly quick work. It's surprising what you can get cut on this thing. I have used it to make small slabs from good size chunks of rocks.

Here's the pile of preforms I'm going to tackle today. I'll probably only get 8-10 done, though.



Today's question:  I'm not sure if I have asked this before-- Do you wear jewelry? I am always surprised by the number of jewelers who don't. I actually do not wear much jewelry. I used to, until I started making it. Now, making it fulfills my desire for baubles.

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Here we go again...... another day; another stone; another winner....

These are the names that went into the hat:

livewire
Mary Hicks
Kate
Watercolors by Susan Roper
Kathy
Christine
Saturday Sequins
Cindy H
Shiny
Auf Draht (Renate)
Kay B.
Diane F.
Kit
Vicky F
Gina
daizi55
shaolingrrl
Susan S

Today is my youngest grandson's birthday. He's my helper today and quite happy about it. :)




Congratulations Kay B.!!! YAY! You will receive the stone of the day and be entered for Friday's drawing. :)



40 comments:

  1. Your mystery stone is a knockout!

    With your examples, I'm learning the importance of design -- in this case, locating the vein in the exact spot for an aestetically pleasing piece.

    This series is fun and educational. Thanks, Tela.

    Joyce

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    1. Hi Joyce, thanks, I'm glad you noticed and said that. :)

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    2. I can't believe I did not sign in yesterday, :( My granddaughters spent the day and I was running around all day. That is why, but I can't believe it! Ok, I love the mystery rock. I wear the jewelry I make. I generally make bracelets. I used to make necklaces, but don't do much of that anymore and don't generally wear any. I put on two rings if I am going to work and a bracelet and earrings and take them all off as soon as I get home. So I guess I wear jewelry for work, sometimes if I am going out and generally only the bracelets and earrings that I make.

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  2. Tela, I agree with Joyce, this has been fun and interesting! To answer your question, before wrapping, I never wore much jewelry. I still don't most of the time but now make a conscience effort to when I go out. On a daily basis I wear a gold medic alert necklace. I don't even wear my wedding ring! Pretty silly, I sure do enjoy creating it!

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    1. I don't wear a wedding ring, either. My husband does, but I don't. I used to be a ring fanatic- but I don't care to wear them anymore.

      Delete
  3. All week I have looked forward to seeing what you have to show us each day. Thank you for the link to the rocks and minerals ID page and the continuing education about what goes into creating a good cab. All I have learned from your posts will serve me well as I continue to learn how to choose and wrap cabs.

    And I DO(!) wear the baubles I make! Especially my chainmaille bracelets and wire and gem earrings. Once I can finally do a presentable job of cab wrapping, I will wear it proudly!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Well, Kay, you'll have to post your piece somewhere so we can all see it. :)

      I don't wear my stuff very often, but I try to. I have daughters that wear jewelry and let them wear mine and I give them a lot.

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  4. Tela, if you don't know what that rock is, I am sure I don't and I live in Arizona! I agree, you are very good at getting just the right sweet spot to highlight in your cuts.

    I never wore jewelry before unless I was getting "dressed up", and then it was to wear a few pieces of fine jewelry. Then, I got started with this jewelry making obsession, and it all changed. I realized that I very rarely got dressed up; so now I wear my artisan jewelry with very casual jeans, etc. If I buy a new blouse, I make a new necklace and earrings to match it...I am that hooked. Also, I insist upon "road testing" everything I make to sell so I know it is comfortable to wear and durable, so I wear everything at least once, even if it is around the house.

    A bead store owner in Las Cruces, NM once told me that I would sell lots more from "around my neck" than in any display case, anywhere. You know what? I have had people buy necklaces or earrings in grocery stores when I tell them they are available. Many have also taken my jewelry business cards and called me later to buy things. I am always amazed when perfect strangers, in elevators, behind store counters, etc. will remark about my jewelry. I was, at first, reticent about saying they were my designs, but it has worked in the past to do that so I am more comfortable doing it now. If they remark on the jewelry I always say something like "thanks, I make my jewelry". This usually prompts them to say "really? do you sell any of it?" Of course, I have a supply of cards and I let them know if the pieces I am wearing are from my private stock or available and I hand them my card. If I have a sale coming up at the community art center, I invite them to that, too. Also, my husband usually steps in when he is with me and says "she makes all her jewelry!".

    So, I guess what I am saying is that I have developed a new enjoyment for the jewelry I wear myself, as well as using it as a marketing tool. Sounds self-serving, but I think this is the best of both worlds!

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    1. Great advice! I've heard that before and I know I should be doing it, but honestly, I'm terribly shy and would be tongue tied if I had to strike up a conversation about myself with a stranger. My daughters usually do it for me. My one daughter is a great little sales lady. She's always pitching me.

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  5. Cindy H in Waco, TXJuly 25, 2012 at 9:44 AM

    If I got out more, I guess I would wear jewelry.

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    1. I don't go out a lot, either. I'm perfectly happy at home with my family and rocks. :)

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  6. Happy Birthday to your most handsome grandson! He looks like a happy helper.

    Today's stone is gorgeous and I am drooling over your box of cabs to work on.

    I have always worn jewelry and even now when I am semi-house bound, I still wear it everyday. It makes me happy!

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    1. Great sentiment, Christine! It makes me happy when I wear it, too. Maybe that is reason enough to wear it more often. :) My husband has always been especially found of me wearing earrings. That alone should make me wear them everyday. I guess, I have grown lazy. :(

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  7. OOOOHHHHHH! Tela, I am so excited that my name was drawn by your adorable grandson today! Unfortunately, I can't get your e-mail link to work to send you a message containing my information....what shall we do?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. YAY!! I'm happy that you're happy! :)

      You probably have a pop up blocker. Try this tela (dot) formosa at gmail (dot) com Turn that into an email address by replacing (dot) with .

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    2. Thanks, Tela, it's been sent!

      Delete
  8. I wear a lot of my jewelry since I go out dancing several times a week. Most of my pieces are fine with casual clothes. It's good advertising and you can test the design to see if it is comfortable and durable. I have sold earrings I was wearing right out of my ears! Some I get attached to something and keep for myself--at least for a while.

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    1. I get attached to some pieces, too. I tend to hold onto them for awhile and then I'll *think* about letting them go. :)

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  9. Of course I wear jewelry! And I am always surprised to find jewelry designers who don't wear their creations. I love beautiful rocks!

    Happy birthday to your grandson.

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    1. I know, strange isn't it, but I have talked to more that don't wear jewelry than do. I'm enamored with my jewelry and rocks, but I just don't wear it very often. I do, of course, just not often. And, I do test wear new designs.

      My grandson had a blast today- all the kids went to Busch Gardens for the day. :)

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  10. So glad to hear that others don't wear much jewelry but love to create it. I thought it was just me. LOL My mom is my best advertizement. She wears my jewelry every day and people always ask her about it. SHe is a people person and I'm shy like you. I'm not a sales person at all.

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    1. I hope you give your mom lots of business cards. :) My mom's gone now, but my daughters like to wear my things. They are better at selling than I am, too.

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  11. Tela, I have tried posting 3x and I'm having technical difficulties -- I really hope you don't end up seeing 3 of the same comment from me today!!

    Anyway, this is SO AWESOME! Love your cabs, love seeing your process, love seeing the machine, that looks just like the wet-saw I used for tiling. Now I'm thinking, hmmm, maybe some day I can do cabbing too! Yikes!

    And, yes, I wear a lot of jewelry -- mostly stuff I have made, which is cool because I don't have to buy it! And my mom is my best advertisement too! She loves to wear my jewelry and when her friends compliment her she tells them I made it. And gives them my business card! Ha!

    Can't wait to see what you come up with next!

    Cheers!

    ~Amy

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    1. Hi Amy! Glad you like the post. :) Of course you can do cabbing, too! I hope I inspire you to the point where you will look for a local rock club to learn how to do it. :)

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  12. Congrats to Kay, and doesn't your grandson have a beautiful smile :)

    I wear 2 rings and a silver chain bracelet everyday - I do wear jewellery that I make but for whatever reason no one ever seems to notice, doh! I laughed at Kathy's comment about becoming attached to some pieces ... at least for a while ... I'm pretty sure if I'd had children I would have sold them off, too, given a chance, LOL!

    BTW, your mystery rock is a cracker!

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    1. Hi Vicky :) I tell you, that little boy is the apple of my eye. He's a great kid!

      I'm sure people notice your jewelry- you just don't notice them noticing you :)

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  13. I don't wear much jewelry. I take it out and look at it once in a while, though. It's a treat to myself. Like having a cabinet of glass paperweights or something, I guess. The pieces sparkle and make me happy.

    Happy birthday to your grandson!

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    1. Wow- I like how you put that! Well put :)

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  14. The more I learn about cabbing, the more I want to learn! Yet another reason to start robbing banks in a sequined cape and mask. ;)

    I have to work very hard to remember to put on jewelry, and I usually only wear it if I've made something new and want to show it off (like at Bead and Button). But! Remembering worked out well for me a few weeks ago because it helped me make a new friend. :)

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    1. LOL! I can just see the sequined bandit now! LOL!

      How cool, about meeting a new friend over jewelry. I guess it can be a real conversation starter. I hadn't thought of it like that before.

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  15. tell your grandson happy birthday for me!
    i didnt know whether i could still post since i won mondays (yaay!) stone (thank you thank you thank you)but then i figured you wont put my name in the hat again anyway til friday, so i probably could post .^^
    that mystery stone is very pretty, i love that green! tuesdays stone was very pretty too, (congrats to kay b!) i love allll these stones! :D
    i do still wear just as much jewelry as i always have (when i remember to put some on) but now its gotta be stuff ive made (unless its something special, like gifts from husb. or family members)
    id love to try cabbing too, (and lampworking, and ceramics, and soldering and metalworking....) but unless i win the lottery and can afford all that equipment, it aint gonna happen. so i'll just enjoy knowing someone who does cab, and shares pics of her lovely work with us all... <3

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    1. I'll tell him for you. He went to Busch Gardens today, but I'll see him tomorrow and on Sat we'll have a proper party.

      It has taken me years and years and years to slowly get all the tools and things that I have. My husband and I always comment on how we could never afford to have to go out and buy all our hobby stuff at once. It just grows little by little. Actually, if you wanted to start lampworking with soft glass, it isn't too expensive to get started. You should look into it. Don't believe everything the sellers say you HAVE to have. Get some glass rods and a cheap hothead torch and you are pretty much ready to go.

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  16. I wear a different pair of earrings everyday and 2 rings. I'm a t-shirt and blue jeans type of girl. Don't dress up much at all.

    Hope your grandson had a great day, he sure is cute.

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    1. He had a great day, thanks :)

      See that's my problem, too. I'm real casual. I do have some favorite pieces that go casual real well. Those are the ones I will typically wear.

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  17. Your Grandson is so ummm...BEAUTIFUL! Love his smile :-)
    I really like your excitement with the rocks you are collecting, working, and gifting.It adds some much more, I think to the jewelry-making process.
    I don't wear my store bought traditional jewelry from years ago-In fact took it out of the safe deposit...hid it in the garage, and haven't been able to find it for several years.Except for monetary value, couldn't care less.I have a few favorite pieces handcrafted by others that I wear occasionally. Mine-I will wear maybe on a day I visit the bead store....a conversation starter and a way to meet new beady friends. Mutual admiration, dontcha know? :-) oh, do have a simple gold ring spelled LOVE my grandmother wore for years before she passed. I too wear this now as a remembrance and a reminder of its importance in our daily lives.

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    1. That's so nice that you have your grandmother's ring. :)

      I'm trying to imagine you cleaning the garage and having a eureka moment when you find your jewelry. LOL!

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  18. Took a deep breath when I saw your hand so close to that wheel, which looks really dangerous.

    Intriguing, your Arizona Mystery Tongue. I can hear it whisper "Wrap me! Wrap me!" ;-) Your bowl of preforms is no less intriuing. Can't wait to see the green one, or the red ones - are they brecciated jasper, again?

    And yes, I did find those brecciated jasper donuts and some more. ;-) Piccies, hopefully, some day.

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    1. That was my son doing the cutting. He loves to do it. I should have noted that. :)

      Yup, I did some more brecciated jasper. I can't help myself.

      Yes, one day, I would love to see your stash. Maybe I should host a "show your stash day" on the blog. :)

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  19. KIT!!!! Where did your comment go?????

    The rules were to have your comment posted by the next blog post and you made it! Just barely, but you did. :)

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