100 Etsy Sales!!

I am celebrating having reached my 100th sale in my Etsy shop! There is something rather wonderful about moving from 2 digits into 3 digits and reaching such a nice big round number.  I also just made it within my 1 year Etsy anniversary, which is in 2 weeks time.

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A big THANK YOU to all my lovely customers and supporters out there.

A special thank you also goes to Mr Big Skies Jewellery for his unwavering belief in me and my endeavours, and for a) letting our house become overrun by beads; b) listening to me talk incessantly about all things beading; c) still managing to look interested when I say “what do you think of this” for the umpteenth time; and d) devoting precious weekend time to bead/supply shopping.

This is the necklace that was my 100th sale – purchased by Caroline as a birthday present for her mom.

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Big Skies Jewellery’s 100th Sale – Onyx and Turquoise Howlite adjustable necklace

Mom is receiving a pair of complimentary matching earrings and Caroline has received a nice discount voucher by way of a thank you.

Here’s to the next 100 sales 🙂

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Jewellery Ideas for AW 2013

Fall Jewelry

I thought these rich jewel-toned colours were ideal to combine in a gemstone necklace for those who will soon be transitioning from Summer to Fall 2013.

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Gorgeous faceted agate beads in rich jewel-tones

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Genuine faceted green emerald rondelle beads

Lovely rich vibrant tones in dark reds, greens, pinks, oranges and browns – perfect for your Fall wardrobe. These gorgeous berry colours offer a sophisticated take on brights.

The finished necklace….available from Big Skies Jewellery’s Etsy shop:

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Agate and Emerald Gemstone Necklace – $47 from Big Skies Jewellery

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Jewel-toned Sparkly Agate and Genuine Emerald Necklace – designed and created by Big Skies Jewellery

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Fabulous Fluorite

What is Fluorite?

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Natural Raw Green Fluorite Crystals

Fluorite (also called fluorspar) is a halide mineral composed of calcium fluoride (CaF2). Fluorite has a wide range of colors including yellow, blue, pink purple and green. It is an isometric mineral with a cubic habit, but octahedral and more complex isometric forms are not uncommon. The natural fluorite crystal beads I recently purchased were of the octahedral form.

Octahedron 3D image, octahedron shape, octahedron image

Octahedron 3D Image

History of Fluorite

Fluorite derives from the Latin noun fluo, meaning a stream or flow of water. In verb form this was fluor or fluere, meaning to flow.

In 1852 fluorite gave its name to the phenomenon of fluorescence – due to certain impurities in the crystals found in certain locations, many samples of fluorite exhibit fluorescence under ultraviolet light.

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Gemstone Necklace Featuring Octahedral Raw Fluorite Crystals – created by Big Skies Jewellery

Fluorite Gemstone Meaning

The ancient Egyptians used flourite to carve statues and scarabs, the Chinese have used it in carvings for over 300 years. In the 18th century, fluorite was powdered in water to relieve the symptoms of kidney disease.

Fluorite is said to help with absorbing new ideas and bringing order to chaos.

Fluorite is said to absorb and neutralize negative vibrations.  It is believed to be effective against computer and electromagnetic emanations (says she, sitting in front of her computer for 8 hours a day!)  It is also known as the “Genius Stone” by helping us increase our concentration and make decisions.

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Raw Fluorite Crystal and Pearl Necklace – designed by Big Skies Jewellery

Healing properties of Fluorite

Fluorite can be used as a meditation stone to help energize the body and raise the power of concentration.

Healers use it to help with ulcers as well as the respiratory tract by stimulating cell regeneration in these areas. It fortifies bones, improves arthritic or other joint ailments.

It is reputed to be a powerful healer and is believed to be good at fending off colds and flu, reducing the pain of arthritis and reducing the discomfort of shingles and other nerve related pain.

The Finished Fluorite Jewellery Piece  – Green Fluorite Crystal Necklace

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Green Fluorite Crystal and Pearl Necklace – $75 from Big Skies Jewellery

Pictured above is how I used my “octahedral” raw fluorite crystals.  I favoured a simple design, just using square bead caps to complement the cubic crystals and pretty iridescent grey freshwater pearls to act as highlights between the crystals.  I find this necklace very calming and soothing…..

Shop for beautiful and unique gemstone jewelry at Big Skies Jewellery: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

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The Story Behind the Necklace…..”Phoenix Rising”

Sometimes I know exactly what I want to do with a gemstone bead string as soon as I see it, at other times……..no clue!

I had no idea what to do with these Labradorite spike beads when I saw them, but I love Labradorite and I like unusual shaped beads; this string fit the bill on both counts, so I bought them.

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Labradorite Spike Beads

I began thinking about what other Labradorite I have in stock, including this pendant….

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Labradorite Oval Pendant Set in Silver Metal

And from that, suddenly came the idea! I know, you would never guess that I passed ‘A’ level Art at school!  Thankfully it is not the accuracy and detail which is important in my design sketches, but rather capturing the essence and components of the design before it disappears from my mind’s eye.

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My artistic rendition of a design idea!

The resulting finished necklace was this, which I think (hope!) you will agree, looks a whole heap better than my artistic rendition:

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Labradorite Necklace – Phoenix Rising – $40 from Big Skies Jewellery

The necklace is called Phoenix Rising as the Labradorite spikes remind me of the arched wings of the phoenix as it rises from the flames and ashes – perhaps I am just being whimsical!

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Labradorite Necklace – Phoenix Rising – $40 from Big Skies Jewellery

In Greek mythology, a phoenix is a long-lived bird that is cyclically regenerated or reborn. Associated with the sun, a phoenix obtains new life by arising from the ashes of its predecessor.

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Labradorite Necklace – Phoenix Rising – $40 from Big Skies Jewellery

Please browse through Big Skies Jewellery’s Etsy store for other unique and beautiful gemstone jewellery: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

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What is Black and White and Stylish All Over?

Here is a selection of some of the smaller gemstone beads that I have added to my bead stash and have been working with recently.

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Gemstone bead strings – part of Big Skies Jewellery bead inventory!

For those that like to know the names of the stones – from the left we have blue imperial jasper, snowflake obsidian, faceted black onyx, gold mother of pearl, faceted zebra stone, goldstone, chrysocolla and red tiger’s eye.  The stone I would like to talk about  today is Zebra Stone.

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Zebra Stone bead string – faceted rectangles

Zebra Stone, as the name implies, is half-black and half-white with a metrical pattern  similar to that of its animal namesake, the zebra.

Zebra

Zebra (picture taken at the Kruger Park, South Africa)

This striking and unusual stone is all about balance. Like the yin/yang of Chinese philosophy, Zebra Stone possesses balanced qualities of opposing, yet complimentary, forces – it is said to help us quieten the mind and take action.

By themselves the Zebra stone beads are actually quite dainty, but I wanted to use them all together to create something more powerful.  I chose a triple-strand necklace design, where each strand is clearly defined and the beads can lie flat, showing off their natural beauty to its full potential.

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Zebra Stone Triple Strand Necklace $85 from Big Skies Jewellery

Monochrome is on trend for 2013, and every woman needs a good black and white necklace in her jewellery box.  This necklace has been specifically designed with versatility in mind.  The length is adjustable so you can wear it high under a blouse or with a summer top, but you can also wear it longer over a polo neck or turtle neck top in winter.

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Zebra Stone Triple Strand Necklace $85 from Big Skies Jewellery

For more gemstone necklaces, bracelets and earrings, please browse through the Big Skies Jewellery Etsy store: http://www.etsy.com/shop/bigskiesjewellery

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Create Rather Than Consume!

I read an interesting article recently, can’t quite remember where, but it basically said that you cannot create whilst you consume. This got me thinking….. social media for me is a bit like a giant glitterball – its shiny and sparkly and I want to keep looking at it. But…..whilst I do, I am not creating and creating is at the core of my business. So every now and then I need to remind myself to create rather than consume.

Here are a couple of new gemstone pendant necklace designs created during this recent reminder to myself……

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Fire Crackle Agate Pendant Necklace – $29 from Big Skies Jewellery

I love this necklace, it has a lovely earthy, ethnic feel to it – the metal beads used are very decorative and the fire crackle agate is such an interesting stone – very unique patterning.  The necklace is wonderful blend of colour, pattern and texture.

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Fire Crackle Agate Pendant Gemstone Necklace – $29 from Big Skies Jewellery

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Crystal and Cherry Quartz Pendant Necklace – $32 from Big Skies Jewellery

This gemstone pendant necklace has an opulent feel to it – it is sure to make whoever wears it feel very special.  It features lovely cherry quartz round, oval and faceted beads, clear crystal beads and a mixture of beautifully patterned ornate metal beads that descend around the neck from a fine textured silver-toned chain, to a stunning two-toned pink and clear quartz, wire-wrapped  teardrop pendant.

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Crystal and Cherry Quartz Pendant Necklace – $32 from Big Skies Jewellery

Learn About Gemstones – Solar Quartz

Ever wondered what a cross-section through a stalactite would look like?  Well then… let me introduce you to Solar Quartz.  Solar Quartz is ordinary agatized quartz that is cut from stalactites in lucid, pale or grey, as well as with mossy inclusions – it is a quartz stalactite that has been sliced crossways into discs.  I think they look like beautiful crystal flowers.

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Solar Quartz, like agate, is often dyed vivid colors – natural Solar Quartz does not have electric coloring.  All the photos in this post have been reproduced with the kind permission of Inspire GemandCrystal, which is full of beautiful and unique stones and findings – please check our their lovely shop.

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As with all quartz, solar quartz is an energy enhancer – connecting to both spirit and harmony. Solar Quartz is said to bring emotional strength and upliftment, with great power and energy. Solar Quartz also has all the properties of clear quartz and is protective, purifying on spiritual, mental and physical levels.

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Quartz is possibly the most flexible, multi-purpose curative stone – it increases power and healing, pulls out and transports energy as well as increases natural crystals within the body’s fluid and tissues in order to reverberate new healing frequency.

Green Gemstone Choker – New Design for Spring/Summer 2013!

I love the fresh colour and simplicity of this green semi-precious stone choker. The stone discs, with their natural variations in size, and light and colour, create their own unique pattern.   A large decorative silver filigree bead, carefully placed assymetrically, adds the necssary focal element to lift the necklace.

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Semi precious green stone choker, green stone disc necklace, chunky gemstone necklace, assymetric necklace, statement necklace

The gemstone rope is finished off with two silver-toned filigree metal beads and an ornate easy-to-fasten toggle clasp – ensuring the necklace looks just as good from the back if you wear your hair up or have short hair.

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This unusual necklace is the perfect spring/summer 2013 wardrobe addition for the woman who likes to express her individuality through her jewellery – it is chic and elegant. Part of our ‘being’ is the need for self-expression, and that is one of the reasons why I create my jewelry range.

The Big Skies Jewellery Collection contains unique and beautiful pieces from earthy casual designs, to high-end dressy pieces for special occasions – there is something for everyone and every occasion.

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life….with a Bold Statement Necklace

This is the latest statement necklace design to join the Big Skies Jewellery collection.

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For some reason I had woken up with the Monty Python tune “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life” (from The Life of Brian)  in my head – a wonderfully annoying earworm to have for the day!!  But, I took it to be a sign, and went straight to the brightest beads in my bead stash, and got to work.

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Bright red chunky coral and rich blue reconstituted turquoise – highlighted with bright silver accent beads and a big toggle clasp. 

This chunky gemstone necklace is everything a statement necklace should be:

  • eye-catching
  • striking
  • bold.

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View this, and other statement necklaces and gemstone jewelry, in the Big Skies Jewellery store on Etsy.

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Bling Bling!

After much deliberation, and a little encouragement from my Facebook friends :), I have decided to add costume jewellery (i.e. non semi-precious pieces) to my Big Skies Jewellery online shop.  This new range is designed especially for those that love a bit of bling!

This is the first piece of the new collection (the original necklace sold within 2 days, so I have just re-listed it).

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Sparkly Crystal and Silver Rope Necklace ($34) by Big Skies Jewellery

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The collection will be expanding soon….variations on the piece below are almost ready for listing!

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Coming soon to Big Skies Jewellery!

 

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