Monday, October 28, 2013

more temptation

There was another mineral and gem show at the Canby fairgrounds this weekend...
My friend Linley and I moseyed on over. Well, Linley moseyed, I approached with long, purposeful strides, my antennae twitching...
The first thing we spotted, was a table about 15 feet long FILLED with hand cut beads. There were gemstone beads, jaspers and agates, just about every cool stone in the world cut into beads. About a bazilloion of them at least... and this was day 2 of the show. What must day 1 have looked like??

Each and every bead was cut, shaped, drilled and polished by a very nice retired gentleman who obviously delights in his work! Not cheap, but definitely worth every penny. 
I chose Hidden valley jasper, bird's eye rhyolite, Morrisonite, holley blue agate, Montana agate.

I have no idea at the moment what I'll do with them, maybe just keep them around as playthings...

I found some really nice Montana agate cabs...


...and some Cherry Creek jasper. the top stone is already in process of becoming this week's brooch.

In an earlier post about my trip to central Oregon to dig for polkadot jasper, I mentioned that thousands of years ago the area drew Native Americans who used the jasper for tool making. To remove the material, they would build hot fires next to the rock to cause it to split off. The heat caused the jasper to turn pink. This cab is a remnant of that activity. The two small pieces I found I decided to hang on to as artifacts so I was delighted to find this cab, cut by the mine owner who was also at the show selling.

Of course I also bought a few slabs to add to my collection of those from which I'll do my own cutting one of these days, but I had to share this one. An old timer told me it was fossil algae! I'm sure there are cooler things in the world... but what??

All in all, it was a very good day... as well as a business expense...

Monday, October 14, 2013

a new fossil... and 4 more brooches

I had a nice drive out into the country this morning on a picture perfect Fall day. My goal, to pick up the rock slabs my stone cutting friend Greta had cut for me from some of the rough I had picked up during last month's rock hounding expedition. She has an awesome rock saw that can cut through the big chunks.
While I was there waiting on the last cut I, of course, started poking my nose into all her boxes of rocks. You wouldn't believe how much stuff that is...
I saw this slab of fossil fern wood and asked if she'd sell it to me. Lovely Greta, I'm sure she realized that she has about 3 lifetimes worth of rock to work with so into my goodie bag it went... I never leave Greta's without many things I had no idea I needed until I saw them...

The thing that really caught my eye were the layers along the edge. A lovely blush along with taupe, a darker stripe, and cream. I can see a few pair of drop earrings as well as some very cool cufflinks in that edge.

Something not noticeable in the photos, is that in all of those voids, there's the sparkle of tiny druzy quartz crystals. I'm really looking forward to cutting into this!


And since it's been a month since my last post, here are the four latest brooches in the etsymetal brooch a week challenge.

A beauty of a lace agate, semi transparent so you can see into it and the botryoidal formation, those very organic looking globular forms. I've designed it so that it can been worn as a pendant as well as a brooch.


This is a piece of ocean jasper with a small pinkish rhodolite garnet.


I think this one can hardly be called a brooch, more of a pin, it's a teeny little thing, 
and is a piece of Picasso jasper.


Last week's brooch, #41
 is a large piece of mookaite from Australia, paired with a little yellow citrine.

Right now I'm working on this week's design, but I'm not quite sure how it's going to all come together yet, so I won't say more... not yet