The Colors of Spring and Summer 2013

Here they are, the colors of Spring and Summer 2013!  Ten beautiful colors to compliment your every fashion need.  Emerald has been voted in as Pantone’s “Color of the Year” for 2013.  The other colors consist of beautiful neutrals such as Linen (a favorite of mine), Dusk Blue and Grayed Jade. Bright colors consist of Lemon Zest, Emerald, Nectarine, African Violet and Tender Shoots (a fresh, yellowish green).  The neutrals will compliment the brights beautifully with the anchoring color of Monaco Blue!

Prepare to see these colors everywhere; the fashion runways, interior design, jewelry and formal events such as weddings, to name just a few.

The possibilities for mixing gemstones and clothing are endless this year.  It will not be as difficult to compliment your outfit with the right jewelry pieces this year as in past years!

Here are some great gemstone matches for 2013’s colors!

COLOR – EMERALD – A deep intense blue-green

emerald, malachite, green onyx, apatite, tourmaline

COLOR – LEMON ZEST – Bright yellow, like a lemon

topaz, lemon quartz, yellow sapphire, citrine, tourmaline, yellow opal, agate

COLOR – NECTARINE – Citrus orange with a touch of coral

fire opal, amber, carnelian, topaz, fire agate, honey onyx, and spessartite, hessonite and mandarin garnets

COLOR – AFRICAN VIOLET – The shade of nature’s wild lavender

fluorite, amethyst, kunzite

COLOR – TENDER SHOOTS – Yellowish-green, like granny smith apples

peridot, serpentine, green turquoise, green chalcedony, and demantoid, grossular and tsavorite garnets

COLOR – LINEN – The color of beach sand

morganite, white turquoise, rutilated quartz, mother of pearl, coin pearls, freshwater pearls, rose quartz

COLOR – DUSK BLUE – A Summer’s sky

aquamarine, blue topaz, blue agate, larimar, blue chalcedony

COLOR – GRAYED JADE – A soft mint green

jade, amazonite, chrysoprase, greenish shades of aquamarine, chalcedony and larimar

COLOR – MONACO BLUE – A bright, deep purplish blue

sapphire, iolite, spinel, lapis lazuli, sodalite,


Have fun with your color selections this year.  Take a chance and ‘step out of the box’.  I bet you will be pleasantly surprised!!

Michigan Semi-Precious Greenstone

Michigan semi-precious Greenstone is found only in Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula and on Isle Royale National Park. The first documentation of this stone was in 1847 by Drs. C. Jackson and J. Whitney. The official name, chlorastrolite, was designated as Michigan’s official state gem in 1973.

Isle Royale National Park

Chlorastrolite is a bluish-green stone that has a segmented pattern resembling a turtle’s shell. Turtle Back and Green Star Stone are some other names that have been applied to this uncommon stone that is not found anywhere else in the world. Sometimes chlorastrolite is found with with other minerals inbedded in it.

Non-polished Greenstone

Chlorastrolite was formed in gas bubbles that formed deep within the basalt layer under the Keweenaw Peninsula. Isle Royale was formed off-shore from Keweenaw by an upsurge of bedrock under Lake Superior. This upsurge of bedrock exposed Greenstone in the basalt. The Greenstone broke loose with wave action and soon showed up in the beach gravel along the shores of the Isle.

Polished Greenstone

Chlorastrolite (Greenstone) usual size varies between 1/8″ and 1/2″. Quality is usually poor in larger stones. It is difficult for lapidaries to work with. Some chlorastrolite stones are hollow or calcite-filled, making them break easily. But with patience and carefully applied polishing pressure, lovely treasures can be accomplished. The Smithsonian has the largest chlorastrolite in existence, measuring 1-1/2″ x 3″.

If you find yourself in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, make sure to visit some rock shops to pick out one of these beautiful semi-precious stones. They make beautiful pendants, inlays, rings, etc. The scarcity of this stone is growing rapidly. And please remember, it is now illegal to harvest Greenstone in Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula and on Isle Royale National Park.

Is Chainmaille A Link From The Past

Is chainmaille a link from the past?  Absolutely!  It was developed as body armor by the ancient Celts to protect warriors in battle long before the 5th Century.   Chainmaille was created from either iron or steel.  Open rings were usually made from metal wire.  Closed rings were made by either punching a hole in metal sheet (with the outer edge then being trimmed) or double punching out a sheet of metal.  The open rings were usually closed by hammer welding.  Plate armor began to replace chainmaille in the 14th Century.

Chainmaille – Upper Torso

Today, chainmaille continues to play a very important role in many different venues in life.

4 in 1 Chainmaille Pattern
Photo Credit: Europa Designs

Artisans have found chainmaille to be an extremely versatile art form utilizing unique weaves and techniques.  Gold, sterling silver, gold-filled, titanium, niobium copper, anodized aluminum, stainless steel and colored neoprene rings (very light in weight) are used to create stunning jewelry pieces, some incorporating gemstones, for both men and women.

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