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Caring for your jewelry

Summer cautions!

Chlorine damage

 

We all know to take care of ourselves with good nutrition and exercise, so our joy will not be ruined by pain. But, little things can cause us great harm.

Likewise, our jewelry needs protection. Studies are proving that the exposure to chlorine in pools and hot tubs, as well as household cleaners, will damage jewelry. Prong failure can occur in only 21 hours with 5% chlorine heated to 110 degrees. When using 5 parts per million bromine as found in hot tub chemicals, prongs can fail after 384 hours, or, 192 days based on 2 hours per day, 7 days per week. Your jewelry may look nice after leaving the water, but damage HAS BEEN done!

Please don’t wear jewelry when you are swimming in pools or using hot tubs. Be careful when using chlorine cleaners. And, DON’T wear jewelry when you work out at the gym. You bought your jewelry to enjoy, not to be repaired repeatedly. Care for your jewelry and it will give you years of use and enjoyment.
Bring your jewelry to me to be inspected and cleaned, and I’ll do it for FREE! Anytime!

Do you need your jewelry appraised?

I’ve heard from 2 customers recently that their experiences with insurance on their jewelry didn’t go well. A woman lost her ring and filed a claim with the insurance company. She was dismayed when the check she received would not come close to allowing her to replace the lost ring. The insurance company had an old appraisal from 20 years ago. They insured her ring for that amount. They did not ask for a more current appraisal any time since originally writing the policy, which meant they never increase the policy to match current replacement costs. So, if the ring was insured for $2000.00 based on the 20-year-old appraisal, that’s all they would pay her for the ring if/when lost, meaning $2000.00 for a ring that would cost considerably more today.

The second customer recently changed insurance companies. He had appraisals from about 10 years ago. The insurance company asked for current appraisals. When new appraisals were not issued, the insurance company dropped the coverage and sent the customer a refund on that part of the policy, leaving him without any coverage for the many pieces of jewelry he owned.

In each of these instances, the customer was grossly underinsured and one was not “made whole” while the other would not have received anything if a loss occurred.

While I’m not an insurance agent, and don’t have a current license to sell insurance and cannot offer insurance advise, I will give you some ideas to ask your insurance professional about.

Most insurance companies expect that your jewelry appraisals are updated every 3 to 5 years. The prices of metals and gemstones fluctuate, going higher or lower by the day. Gold, for example, is nearly $1300.00 per ounce today, June 8, 2018. Over the past 10 years, gold was as low as $709.50 and as high as $1900.30 per ounce. Gemstones have similar cost changes.

Some questions to ask your insurance professional to be sure your jewelry is covered correctly in case of loss are:
• Ask how often you should have your jewelry appraised? Be sure to adhere to their guideline so your coverage is correct.
• Does your policy have a “cost of living” clause so your coverage increases as inflation increases?
• Does your policy cover against, “loss of, or damage to the diamonds or gemstones?” I’ve heard of diamonds falling out of the mountings and, since the client still had the mounting, the loss was not covered.
• Is there anything else you may need to insure your jewelry?

Please, do not have your jewelry insured for any phony original price from the stores that “give” you 40, 50 60% or more off the price. Your coverage should be for about what you paid for the jewelry because that’s the real price of the jewelry. Almost every insurance company I know will not pay you that phony retail if you lose the jewelry. They will only pay you what they, themselves can buy it for, and then give it to you.

There are other pieces of wisdom your insurance professional can give you, just ask them. When you need an updated appraisal, that’s where I can help you. As a Gemologist, I’m approved by my insurance company to do appraisals for you. I appraisal your jewelry here in the store when you need it, not when someone else comes into the store. I’ll first inspect your jewelry while you’re here. I’ll thoroughly clean your jewelry so I can see what you have. I’ll measure and grade each stone, determine an insurance replacement price for the jewelry, then print 2 copies of your appraisal; one for you and one for your agent. It’s that easy!

December Birthstone Part 4

Lapiz Lazuli

The beautiful blues in paintings from the Renaissance are thanks to the blue of lapislapislazuli
lazuli, the opaque blue gem material that was the secret ingredient in ultramarine, the
valuable pigment that all the old masters used to capture the rich blues of the sea
and sky and the robes of the Virgin Mary. The color wasn’t duplicated by any other
substance until 1834 but even now, some argue there is no substitute: unlike other
pigments ultramarine centuries old still glows with rich color today.

As befits a gem that has been international currency for millennia, the name lapis
lazuli is mélange of languages. From the Latin, lapis means stone. From the Arabic,
azul means blue.

Lapis lazuli is still mined at the deposits of the ancient world in Afghanistan. Today
lapis lazuli is also mined in Chile. Small quantities are also produced in Siberia, in
Colorado in the United States, and in Myanmar.

Lapis lazuli is somewhat porous and should be protected from chemicals and solvents. Lapis is not very hard, and should be protected from other jewelry when stored to avoid scratches. Clean with mild dish soap: use a toothbrush to scrub behind the stone where dust can collect.

December Birthstone Part 3

Turquoise

Turquoise is among the oldest known gemstones- it has been mined since 3,200 BC.turquoise
It graced the necks of Egyptian Pharaohs and adorned the ceremonial dress of early
Native Americans. This robin egg blue hued gemstone has been attributed with
healing powers, promoting the wearer’s status and wealth, protection from evil and
brings good luck.

Turquoise is an opaque, light to dark blue or blue-green gem. The finest color is an
intense blue. Turquoise may contain narrow veins of other materials either isolated or
as a network. They are usually black, brown, or yellowish-brown in color. Known as
the matrix, these veins of color are sometimes in the form of an intricate pattern,
called a spider web.

To improve its color and durability, turquoise is commonly permeated with plastic, a stable enhancement. It is also
sometimes permeated with colorless oil or wax, which is considered not as stable as plastic. Some turquoise is dyed to
improve its color, but rarely, as this is an unstable enhancement.

Special care is required for turquoise regardless of whether or not it is enhanced. A porous gemstone, turquoise can absorb
anything it touches. Avoid contact with cosmetics, perfumes, skin oil, acids, and other chemicals. Avoid dehydrating it or
exposing it to heat.

December Birthstone Part 2

Tanzanite

 

Tanzanite is an exotic, vivid blue, kissed by purple hues. Legend has it that tanzanitetanzanite
was first discovered when some brown gemstone crystals lying on the dry earth were
caught in a fire set by lightning that swept through the grass-covered hills. The Masai
herders driving cattle in the area noticed the beautiful blue color and picked the
crystals up, becoming the first tanzanite collectors.

Tanzanite has the beauty, rarity and durability to rival any gemstone. It is the ultimate
prize of a gemstone safari. Tanzanite is mined only in Tanzania at the feet of the
majestic Mount Kilimanjaro.

One of the most popular blue gemstones available today, tanzanite occurs in a
variety of shapes and sizes and also provides a striking assortment of tonal qualities.
Rarely pure blue, tanzanite almost always display its signature overtones of purple. In
smaller sizes, tanzanite tends toward the lighter tones and the lavender color is more
common. While in larger sizes, tanzanite typically displays deeper, richer color.

Tanzanite is so hot, it was the first gemstone added to the birthstone list since 1912 by the American Gem Trade
Association.

Virtually every tanzanite is heated to permanently change its color from orange-brown to the spectacular violet-blue color for
which this precious gemstone variety is known.

December Birthstone Part 1

December has several accepted birthstones Blue Zircon (not to be confused with Cubic Zirconia, a man-made stone) is one of them.

Blue Zircon

In the middle ages, zircon was said to aid sleep, bring prosperity, and promote honorzircon
and wisdom in its owner. The name probably comes from the Persian word zargun
which means “gold-colored.”

The fiery, brilliance of zircon can rival any gemstone. The affordability of its vibrant
greens, sky blues, and pleasing earth tones contributes to its growing popularity
today.

Zircon is mined in Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Thailand, and other countries.
Because it can be colorless, green, blue, yellow, brown, orange, dark red, and all the
colors in between, it is a popular gem for connoisseurs who collect different colors or
zircon from different localities.

Zircon jewelry should be stored carefully because although this ancient gem is hard, facets can abrade and chip. Clean with
mild dish soap: use a toothbrush to scrub behind the stone where dust can collect. Better yet, bring all your jewelry in and have it professionally inspected and thoroughly cleaned – for FREE!

Why you should update your appraisals every 2 to 3 years

Pearls for appraisal

Owning a piece of jewelry, no matter the price range, is a meaningful keepsake for many people. Many celebrate a special occasion with a piece of jewelry or receive a special item as an inheritance.

Most people own at least one piece of jewelry. This may include necklaces, earrings, engagement and wedding rings, antique jewelry, custom jewelry, as well as estate jewelry. However, what most people don’t realize is the importance of protecting these valuables. As a result, getting an appraisal often gets shoved down the list of priorities. Whenever you purchase or receive a new piece of jewelry it is essential that you insure it in a timely fashion. This will cover your precious jewelry if something is to happen after getting it in your possession. It doesn’t matter if you have only one piece of jewelry or a whole collection; having an appraisal done for insurance purposes is a life saver when the unthinkable happens. Don’t believe me? Here are some reasons why you should have your jewelry appraised:

While it matters, your voice alone is not good enough in the event of theft, damage, or loss. Documentation from a certified source is required, and an appraisal can attest to the design, quality and condition of your jewelry.
The market is constantly fluctuating, so it is important to realize that value and cost are not the same. The value of gemstones, diamonds, and metal fluctuates daily. Even if your receipt states that you paid a certain amount, the market is never static so the value can change.
Knowing the value is essential to the insurance process. The value of your jewelry can affect your premium, and due to the fluctuating market values, your insurance policies should change accordingly.
Insurance companies will typically cover your jewelry if it is stolen to a limit. Damage or loss may have to be added to your policy, so it is vital that you check to see what is covered with your insurance agent. However, not all of the insurance policies you have may cover the full appraised value of your jewelry, so it’s important to update your policies regularly to ensure adequate coverage. If you’ve ever wondered why it’s recommended to update your appraisal every 2 to 3 years, the answer is simple, for protection and peace of mind! Because of the fluctuating market values of silver, gold, diamonds, and jewelry, it is important to stay on top of the changing market so you are current with inflation prices. The value of that wedding ring may change few cents from day to day, but the value can change dramatically over the course of a few years. This is why it is vital that you have a current, updated appraisal so your insurance agent can ensure that you are protected accordingly from the unexpected.

Here at Dale Robertson Jewelry, I specialize in providing my customers with comprehensive appraisal services. Remember, paying for an appraisal is a cheap investment for a big value, so if you are looking to have an item appraised, give me a call today.

Shared, in part, from Geolat.com

White gold and rhodium

Thumbnail Rhod WG
Rhodium, white gold

Did you know…Rhodium and white gold.

First and foremost, please understand that white gold does not exist in nature; white gold is a man-made product. Pure gold is 24kt and is a very bright yellow, not white. So what is white gold?
Imagine 24 identically sized bb’s of pure gold. If you melt all 24 of them together, you will have a blob of 24kt gold. If you remove one 24kt bb and replace it with another bb of any other metal (remember, there always has to be 24 bb’s when you melt them down) you will have 23kt gold.
Okay, follow the math here; if you take 10 of the 24kt bb’s away and replace them with 10 bb’s of nickel or zinc and melt all 24 of them together, you will have 14kt white gold. Therein lies the problem. You have 10 white bb’s and 14 bright yellow bb’s, thus, 14k white gold will always have that slight yellow sheen.
10kt white gold on the other hand contains 14 parts white to 10 parts yellow. 18kt white gold…well, it should be outlawed in my opinion because its 18 parts yellow and 6 parts white…aka…Slight Yellow Gold!
Rhodium on the other hand is a naturally occurring bright white member of the platinum family that lends itself very well as a plating material. Since its naturally bright white, when you use rhodium to plate a ‘whitish’ metal like 14kt white gold, it brightens it up and makes it appear whiter. Lotions, hand sanitizers and other materials cause the rhodium to dull over time, showing the slight yellow sheen. The process is not permanent and will need to be repeated sometime in the future.
Do you have jewelry question? Send me a message and I’ll give you an answer.

 

 

Emeralds – May’s Birthstone

The ancient Egyptians mined emeralds nearly 4,000 years ago, and Cleopatraemerald was an avid collector. South America’s rich bounty of emeralds was discovered by16th Century Spanish explorers who found large emeralds in the possession of the Aztecs and Incas. Believed by the ancients to empower the owner with
foresight into the future, emerald is regarded as an amulet for good fortune Emerald, to many, symbolizes rebirth and the abundance of the life force. The rich green hue brings to mind the regeneration of life in spring and hope of new possibilities. Emerald is the birthstone for May and a talisman for Gemini.

Spring can also be seen in the network of inclusions in the depth of the emerald that the French call the jardin, or garden, because it resembles foliage. The inclusions are like a fingerprint, giving each emerald a distinct personality and distinguishing them as truly natural gemstones.

Today, most of the world’s emeralds are mined in Colombia, Brazil and Zambia. Emeralds can be cut in a variety of different shapes, ranging from the traditional rectangular step-cut, known as the “emerald cut,” to rounds, ovals, squares and cabochons.

Early gemstone merchants sought to purify the transparency of their emeralds by immersing them in clear oils or paraffin. They found that clear oils and waxes rendered surface fissures less visible to the eye. Today, we have many sophisticated technologies with which to clarity-enhance emeralds. In addition to the oils and waxes of ancient methods, we now use clear resins to penetrate the open fissures surfacing in the stones. Hardeners are often added to solidify these liquids. This step prevents the resin from evaporating, thus making the clarity enhancement more permanent than oiling or waxing the gem.

Although emerald itself is quite durable, the garden of inclusions may make individual gems vulnerable to damage if
handled roughly. Dale Robertson Jewelry can help you with care and cleaning all your jewelry.

Aquamarine – March’s Birthstone

aquamarine

The very name aquamarine brings to mind the limpid, clear blue tint of the sea. Legend says that Neptune, the King of the Sea, gave aquamarine as gifts to the mermaids, and from then on, it has brought love to all who have owned it. Aquamarine was long thought to have a soothing influence on married couples, making it a good anniversary gift. Aquamarines are found in a range of blue shades, from the palest pastel to greenish-blue to a deep blue. While the choice of color is largely a matter of taste, the deeper blue gemstones are more rare. Remember that Aquamarine is a pastel gemstone, and while color can be quite intense in larger gemstones, the smaller aquamarines are often less vivid. This elegant colored gemstone is the birthstone of March and is the symbol of youth, hope, health and fidelity. Aquamarine was long thought to have a soothing influence on married couples, making it a good anniversary gift. Aquamarines are mined in a number of exotic places including Nigeria, Madagascar, Zambia, Pakistan and Mozambique, but most of the gemstones available today come from Brazil. Many aquamarines are greenish when mined and cut. For those who prefer a purer blue, these gemstones are heated to enhance their blue color permanently. Some aquamarine fanciers prefer the greenish hues, saying the greener tones remind them more of the sea. The color tones of aquamarine are subtle and varied. Their soft luster is a wonderful addition to any natural colored gemstone jewelry collection. Are you dreaming of a nice sandy beach next to the beautiful water, then add aquamarine to your jewelry wardrobe. Dale Robertson Jewelry can help you with care and cleaning all your jewelry.