• Keshi Pearls History + Characteristics

    Assorted Keshi Pearls Assorted Keshi Pearls. Photo license: Creative Commons.


    Keshi pearls owe their name to the poppy seed. These small, oddly-shaped pearls actually represent the byproduct of the cultured pearl industry. Their unique characteristics, of course, make them a favorite among collectors.


    Characteristics of Keshi Pearls

    First of all, keshi pearls are non-nucleated. While non-nucleated pearls sometimes form naturally as a result of intrusion, primarily they form only when intentional nucleation fails.

    To create a cultured pearl, a technician carefully implants a small piece of mantle, sometimes called a button, into a mollusk. Sometimes, early in the process, pieces of this inserted mantle tissue fracture, causing the formation of separate pearl sacs without solid nuclei.

    This results in the formation of a small, flat, oddly-shaped pearl. Without a nucleus, these pearls are comprised completely of nacre. As such, they form in a variety of colors and radiate with intense luster. These happy accidents used to happen en masse, particularly in the early days of Japan's Akoya pearl production.


    Japanese Keshi Pearls

    In the 1920s, the Japanese began culturing Akoya pearls. After the first harvest, they discovered numerous tiny pearls they called keshi, a Japanese term that means "poppy."

    Though they hesitated to discard these highly lustrous nacre treasures, they also desired to spare themselves the tedium of sorting, stringing, and marketing these seed pearls.

    Fortunately, Indian tradesmen swiftly bought out the Japanese supplies of keshi pearls, knowing full well their Arab customers would believe they grew naturally. Not surprisingly, their story sold, as did the pearls.

    In truth, these small pearlescent wonders are not considered natural pearls, as they are an unintended consequence of pearl cultivation.


    What's In A Name?

    Cross-cultural controversy continues in the labeling of keshi pearls. The official use of the term keshi, sanctioned by the gem trade industry, refers only to those non-nucleated nacre formations which arise from the culturing of saltwater pearls.

    However, some use the term to describe freshwater non-nucleated pearls, as well. While this label may technically fit, industry leaders prefer the use of other terms for freshwater occurrences.

    The Chinese adopted the most recent use of the term in their freshwater practices. Chinese freshwater pearl culturing includes a practice called second (or subsequent) harvest. Once a mollusk produces its first cultured pearl, technicians typically implant a second nucleus.

    This time around, the mollusk produces nacre at a much slower rate. This slower rate of production often results in somewhat flattened baroque shapes. The Chinese adopted the term keshi to describe these second harvest pearls.

    Today, true keshi pearls occur far more rarely. Current practice includes the use of x-rays, which allow technicians to observe the rejection of a nucleus early enough to intervene. Re-nucleation usually prevents the growth of a keshi pearl.

    Of course, their rarity now renders them a collector's dream.

  • Amethyst History + Properties

    Raw Amethyst Crystal. Photo by Robert on Flickr. Raw Amethyst Crystal. Photo by Robert on Flickr.


    Amethyst grows in shades of light lavender to deep purple. Chemically, it belongs to the quartz group, that is to say silicon dioxide. Quartz is the second most abundant mineral found in the earth's crust.


    Amethyst Properties

    In its purest form, quartz is completely colorless. Mineralogists call this form of quartz rock crystal. As in the case of other gemstone families, small inclusions of different elements can grow within the crystal structure.

    These inclusions, in particular, affect the coloring of the crystal. In the case of amethyst, a combination of iron and/or aluminum intrusion and irradiation (heat) create its violet hues.

    Iron in quartz crystal can also form citrine, amethyst's sister gemstone. The factor responsible for whether iron-infused quartz turns into amethyst or citrine is heat. Reduced exposure to irradiation results in violet coloration. If this purple quartz is heated to higher temperatures, it transforms in color to the golden yellows of citrine.


    History of Purple Quartz

    Amethyst jewelry enters the human record sometime around 4,000 years ago. The Greeks and Romans carved amethysts into beautiful intaglios. Considered a protective stone and a stone of royals, these violet jewels belonged mostly to nobles and those of royal lineage.

    Despite its abundance on the earth, the purple stone remained scarce until sometime in the 1700s or 1800s. During that time, miners discovered a large deposit of purple quartz geodes in Minas Gerais, Brazil.

    It grows primarily in volcanic regions, forming as drusy in geodes or granite rock caves. Commercial grade amethyst comes to market from mines all over the world. The largest global producer is Zambia, Africa. The biggest opencast vein exists in Austria.

    It is also found in many regions of North America, in South Korea, and in Russia. In particular, the most valuable color is found in the Ekaterinburg District in Russia.

    "Deep Siberian" possesses the richest purple hues, saturated at around 75%-80%. The remaining 15%-20% radiates in blue and sometimes red, depending on the light source. Most deeply colored stones will command a higher price.

    We have a lovely selection of amethyst jewelry for you to choose from. To add a piece of earth's magnificent history to your collection, give our team a call today.

  • Amethyst Origins - The Affections of Bacchus

    Closeup amethyst geode.

    Closeup amethyst geode. Photo by Jonny Low from Pexels.

    Amethyst geodes like the one shown above have grown beneath the earth for as many as 120 million years. However, the historic record of their interaction with mankind begins only 5,000 years ago.


    Ancient Regard

    Regarded by the Ancient Romans, Greeks, Egyptians, amethyst held as much value then as diamonds, emeralds, and pearls. It seems these cultures regarded the stone as protective and associated the gem specifically with prevention of intoxication.

    The Greeks went so far as to carve drinking goblets entirely out of amethyst. They believed that these gemstone vessels rendered the alcohol powerless to intoxicate. One wonders how they measured the success of these goblets once they all succumbed.


    Origins of Amethyst

    Today we know that amethyst grows as violet-hued quartz crystals deep beneath the earth. Many of these develop as crystal druzy which forms within gas bubbles that take shape within the earth's magma.

    Ancient people groups, however, remained at the mercy of their storytellers to weave the origin stories of their favorite gemstones. The Ancient Greeks and Romans, in fact, wove masterful mythologies around the gods, including several stories involving gemstones.

    Sadly, amethyst seems to lack an ancient origin story. It does boast a Medieval genesis story written in the 1500s by the French poet Remy Belleau. He titled his poem L'Amethyste, ou les Amours de Bacchus et d'Amethyste" (Amethyst, or the Loves of Bacchus and Amethyste).


    Les Amours de Bacchus

    Remy, drawing upon the rich mythology of ancient Rome, related the story of how amethyst first formed. Here is my version of his tale of Bacchus, the god the grape harvest, wine, and ritual ecstasy, and his misplaced affections for a virtuous maiden.

    The lovely Amethyste walked to the temple of Diana in Rome. She carried her torch and garlands past the dark alley in which Bacchus hid. Bacchus, having watched her pass many moons prior, felt a familiar lightning bolt of excitement emanating from his center. This overwhelmed him and held him in place, until it made his mind giddy with lust.

    Unable to control himself this time, he stepped out of the alley a stretch behind her to pursue her in his lustful drunken stupor. His amorous chants reached her virginal ears, so she quickened her step.

    He began to lope behind her, carrying on about her loveliness and how he must have her for his own. The young maiden, nearly to the stoop of Diana's temple, cried out in fear for her purity.

    Diana, awakened by the loud pleas of her worshiper, saw the wine god's arm outstretched, his fingers nearly grasping Amethyste's cloak. In a daring act of rescue, she spoke a word into the air. Immediately, Amethyste transformed into a statue of solid white crystal, pure as new snow.

    As Bacchus clutched his fingers closed, they gripped the solid white hood of her robe, cold comfort to the frenzied god. Snapped into sobriety by the icy veneer of white crystal, he realized his folly. Right there, Bacchus knelt down before the petrified maiden and wept.

    So saturated with drink was he that he wept tears of wine, which soaked into the ground beneath the feet of the statue. As if the possessed of the powers of a tree, the statue wicked up the tears of the repentant god. As Bacchus continued his wailing, the white crystal transformed to violet, and amethyst was born.


  • Stunning Jewelry on the Golden Globes Red Carpet

    The Golden Globes Red Carpet was frosted with glittering diamond necklaces The Golden Globes Red Carpet was frosted with glittering diamond necklaces just like this Fancy 5-carat fringe diamond necklace. Click here for more details. Photo ©2019 EraGem Jewelry.


    How glorious to see the Golden Globes red carpet glittering with so much jewelry this year. For the past several years, it seemed stylists felt that less was more. This year, they turned on the glam and adorned their stars with jewels upon jewels upon jewels.


    Golden Globes Diamonds

    The night of January 6 came alive with diamonds, diamonds, and more diamonds. Lady Gaga, who won a Golden Globe for Best Original Song, chose custom Tiffany diamond jewelry. Made in New York on Fifth Avenue, the Aurora necklace features over 300 pear- and brilliant-cut diamonds.

    The fringe-style necklace trails down to a single pear-cut diamond pendant weighing more than 20 carats. In total, Lady Gaga's Golden Globes necklace weighed in at more than 80 carats.

    Then there were the gorgeous, wide band diamond cuffs worn by Charlize Theron and Kristen Bell. Charlize chose bold Bulgari, while Kristen wore Harry Winston diamonds. Julianne Moore also wore wide cuffs by Chopard in diamonds and rubies.


    Rubies & Emeralds

    While diamonds reigned supreme, a few stars popped with color, choosing brilliant green emeralds or dazzling red rubies.

    Jessica Chastain wore gorgeous fan-shaped drop earrings by Piaget, set with rubies, diamonds, and possibly champagne diamonds or sapphires. Patricia Clarkson wore Harry Winston ruby and diamond earrings.

    Michelle Yeoh made a statement with her gorgeous emerald cocktail ring, while Saoirse Ronan wore statement titanium earrings by Chopard, set with pear-cut emeralds and cushion-cut diamonds. The emeralds weighed in at 21.43 carats.

    Catherine Zeta-Jones wore an emerald gown with matching Lorraine Schwartz earrings and ring featuring over 200 carats of Colombian emeralds.

    Hands down the most stunning statement jewelry of the evening strolled down the Golden Globes red carpet on the neck of Allison Janney.


    Statement Pieces

    Allison's Heraldic Thorn Link necklace, fashioned by David Webb, loops twice around the neck in massive amounts of rich yellow gold. Set in clusters along the chain, cabochon turquoise, emeralds, and rubies mingle with small diamonds.

    The necklace culminates with a nod to mid-century design, a large circular cluster of matching turquoise, emerald, and ruby cabochons. The star paired the gorgeous necklace with a pair of understated LeVian Passion Ruby post earrings.

    Emily Blunt made her own statement in antique Neil Lane diamonds. In her hair she wore a 19th century flower hair pin, while on her fingers she wore an antique diamond and cut ruby ring. She also wore a pair of old mine cut earrings of royal lineage.


    The Man Brooch

    Perhaps the most exciting statement I saw on the red carpet was what some are calling "the man brooch." Worn most notably by Michael B. Jordan, Stephan James, and Billy Porter, the man brooch is a gem to behold.

    Stephan James wore a sophisticated lapel pin by Swarovski. It's unique shape contrasted perfectly with his velvety Ralph Lauren tuxedo and matched beautifully with his Chopard watch and cufflinks. Michael B. Jordan paired a 1934 vintage diamond lapel clip with his Piaget watch. The pair of them epitomize classic elegance.

    Then there was Billy Porter, who upstaged nearly everyone with his glorious ensemble. His designer, Randi Rahm, describes the fabric of his slacks and suit jacket as "a combination of muted, patterned sartorial menswear fabrics." (source)

    She accessorized with an over-the-top (OTT) silver cape lined with fuchsia pink satin. Hand embroidered with colorful flowers, the cape and suit jacket complement each other perfectly. Porter paired his delectable ensemble with three flower brooches and a ballerina cocktail ring.

    The brooches, by Oscar Heyman, include an invisible set red ruby brooch with diamond leaves and stems, a white diamond gardenia brooch with emerald leaves, and a yellow gardenia brooch (made with either yellow sapphires or yellow diamonds) with a white diamond center and white diamond leaves.

    All I can say is, wow! I wish I had been there to see all the shimmer and style in person.

  • The Magical Realism of Cathy Waterman


    Cathy Waterman Vine and Daisy Drop Earrings Cathy Waterman Vine and Daisy Drop Earrings. Click here for more details. Photo ©2019 EraGem Jewelry.


    Cathy Waterman infuses every jewel she designs with magical realism. These gorgeous vine and daisy drop earrings capture the form of a daisy while at the same time exuding the whimsical happy essence of the summer flower. Fashioned from platinum, these earrings sparkle with round brilliant diamond flowers and leaves.


    Cathy Waterman Designs

    Cathy Waterman launched her brand in 1990, almost immediately capturing the attention of Hollywood's elite. Her gorgeous creations grace the red carpet, feature prominently in fashion magazines, and adorn tastemakers and trendsetters around the globe.

    She begins with a central stone, hand-picked for quality and beauty. With stone in hand, she opens a clean page in her sketch pad and starts to create. Before she even puts pencil to paper, a design fully takes shape within her mind.

    For her, creating jewelry is a joy, an opportunity to connect in a deep way with the materials as well as with the woman who will adorn herself with her finished piece.

    Whimsical, lyrical, feminine, ethereal, magical...these are just some of the powerful words attributed to her designs. In her Santa Monica studio, Cathy draws her inspiration from nature and from her travels. She also draws upon history, particularly church history, as well as literature.

    She considers herself a magician, applying her craft to platinum, 18k gold, diamonds, and gemstones. Taking these raw materials and transforming them into organic jewels, she imbues them with her most prized virtues - consciousness, authenticity, devotion, and true love. (source)


    Cathy Waterman at Home

    I've written about Cathy Waterman before, highlighting her Hollywood career. Today I find pleasure in sharing a more intimate look into her life. Thanks to Food & Wine, who featured Cathy Waterman's home renovations in their November 2013 issue.

    From their blog, I learned that Cathy also brings her design skills into the home. She confessed her renovation addiction, and also let on that she hosts private cooking classes in her kitchen. The designer especially enjoys these opportunities to cook,  both with her children and her class participants, as just one more reason to celebrate.

    Cathy also has an extensive and eclectic art collection, including Austrian Art Nouveau pieces, American folk art made at the turn of the century, as well as tramp art made from recycled materials.

    As a designer, she also uses recycled gold and describes Art Nouveau as her favorite design period. She remarks, “The style is lyrical and nature-based, much like my own work.” (source)

    I invite you to give our sales staff a call to see these collectible Cathy Waterman earrings in person. You will not regret adding them to your collection.


  • Abbie Cornish + Adel Altamimi Announce Their Engagement

    Match Engagement Ring Styles with Abbie Cornish Abbie Cornish received a ring similar in style to this split-shank platinum and diamond halo engagement ring. Click here for more details. Photo ©2019 EraGem Jewelry.


    Abbie Cornish said yes to Adel Altamimi and told her fans about it on Valentine's Day. She shared a couple of beautiful photos of her fiancé and her gorgeous ring on Instagram. Fashioned from platinum, her engagement ring features what appears to be a cushion-cut diamond set in a square diamond halo. The split-shank band is paved in smaller diamonds.


    Abbie Cornish Gushes About Her Fiancé

    Perhaps the most moving part of her Instagram posts are her thoughts about her fiancé. “I see a man that has evolved through this life in a way nobody I‘ve ever met has. A warrior. A champion. A believer. A lover. I respect you so much. The light you see is the light you give. Your mindset and patient heroism in this life is beyond…”

    She continues: “You’ve swept me off my feet my love. I have been waiting for you,” she continued. “The answer is yes! And may God share this light and love with us forever in his arms. Blessed be this day with you. We’ll never forget this anniversary! ; ) Happy Valentine’s Day to my fiancé.”

    Abbie Cornish is not the only one who has taken notice of Adel Altamimi's incredible qualities. His friends, his colleagues, and now the rest of us are standing up to take notice.


    Who is Adel Altamimi?

    Adel Altamimi grew up in Iraq. He began studying Kyokushin Karate at age 9, a practice he continued until switching to Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) in 2011.

    During the United States' war in Iraq, Adel worked as an independent contractor for the US Marines. While driving a convoys, a group of Al-Qaeda terrorists captured him, his cousin, and his best friend.

    The terrorists showed no mercy, cutting his cousin's and best friend's throats right almost immediately. With a blade to his neck, Adel stared death in the face. Fortunately, the Marines saved him from just in time.

    Eventually, Adel moved to Los Angeles. There, he began working at Unbreakable Performance, an exclusive training facility which offers training in MMA to Hollywood's elite.

    There, Adel trained Chris Pratt, who has become one of his primary supporters in his MMA career. On January 26, Adel made his professional debut at Bellator 214, winning the first round in his bid against competitor Brandon McMahon. Chris Pratt stood in Adel's corner, speaking highly of his good friend, "the fierce but humble warrior."


    Who is Abbie Cornish?

    Adel's fiancé sports her own brand of fierce. Born and raised in Lochinvar, New South Wales, Australia, Abbie Cornish grew up on a farm. At age 13, she made it into the finals of the Dolly Magazine modelling competition, an accomplishment which launched her straight into professional modeling.

    Two years later, she landed her first role in TV, playing a quadriplegic on the series Children's Hospital, which aired on the Australian Broadcasting Commission. Then, in 2000, she assumed the name MC Dusk and joined an Australian hip hop group. She rapped and wrote music with this group for about 4 years.

    She went on to win acting awards for other TV performances and landed her first movie role as murder victim Mickey Norris in the 2000 film The Monkey's Mask.

    Since then, Abbie Cornish has starred in films alongside Heath Ledger, Robert DeNiro, Hugo Weaving, Russell Crowe, Bradley Cooper, and many other Hollywood stars. Most recently, she assumed the role of Cathy Mueller in the 2018 TV series Jack Ryan.

  • Orlando Bloom Proposes to Katy Perry on Valentine's Day

    Orlando Bloom Proposed to Katy Perry with a similar gemstone and diamond halo ring Orlando Bloom proposed to Katy Perry with this gorgeous ring's fraternal twin. A halo of large round diamonds rings a gorgeous demantoid garnet. Click here for more details. Photo ©2019 EraGem Jewelry.


    Orlando Bloom proposed to Katy Perry on Valentine's Day with a gorgeous ruby and diamond halo ring fashioned from yellow gold. You can match this celebrity style nearly perfectly with this gorgeous gold ring set with a 1.29-carat, AGL-certified untreated demantoid garnet surrounded by a halo of round brilliant diamonds.


    A Valentine's Day Proposal

    After recommitting to their relationship and spending countless hours on airplanes to keep each other first, Orlando Bloom and Katy Perry discussed marriage. Unbeknownst to Katy, Orlando even discussed the possibility with her parents.

    However, a source shared with E! that Katy was surprised by Orlando's Valentine's Day proposal. (source) This source shared with the entertainment news group that after a romantic Valentine's dinner, Orlando prepared an intimate and private proposal. He slipped this gorgeous ring on her finger and then whisked her away to a surprise party.

    Surrounded by red heart balloons and a room full of her closest friends, Katy Perry celebrated her exciting news and even made time for a couple of selfies she shared with fans on Instagram.


    Orlando Bloom & Katy Perry

    It almost feels silly to include my usual, "Who are they?" post about two such famous celebrities. However, in researching their backgrounds, I did learn a thing or three I thought might be fun to share.

    First, both grew up in religious households. Raised by pastors, Katy Perry started singing in church at a young age and went on to launch a gospel album in her teens. Orlando Bloom's family raised him in the Church of England and enrolled him in a private Methodist elementary school.

    Both of them also started performing and practicing the dramatic and performing arts at a very young age. At age 9, Katy Perry took vocal training lessons with her sister, Angela. At age 13, she received her first guitar and began writing songs and performing in front of groups.

    Although Orlando struggled with academics at school, he flourished in the arts. He enjoyed photography, sculpting, pottery, and theater. He also wrote and performed poetry with his sister. At age 16, he moved to London where he spent two season performing with the National Youth Theater.

    He earned a scholarship at the British American Drama Academy and began auditioning for side roles in TV, a necessary step for many young actors. After appearing in several British dramas, he landed a role in the film Wilde in 1997.

    He later attended Guildhall School of Music and Drama, where he met Peter Jackson. And then there was Legolas, his first epic role which launched his epic acting career.


    Katy Perry Finds Success

    Meanwhile, Katy Perry found favor with Capitol Records, signing with them in 2007. From there, her music career has skyrocketed. Her name appears on several of Forbes' lists of highest female earners in the music industry. She remains one of the most successful female musicians in the world.

    She has also worked in film and TV. In 2011, she brought Smurfette to life in The Smurfs and again in 2013 for its sequel. Most recently, she accepted a judging role on American Idol.

    I offer my sincerest wishes for happiness for these two superstars.

  • Danielle Fishel + Jensen Karp Wedding Details

    I promised a post on the Jensen and Karp wedding, so here you go. Their wedding inspires me in ways I cannot explain. This couple went to great lengths to please not only the bride, but every person who attended.


    A Custom Logo

    It began with a custom logo created for the couple by Clark Orr of CODC Studio. CODC specializes in graphic branding, bringing their designs and illustrations to life for companies seeking a blend of clever fun and classic design.

    For Danielle and Jensen, Clark created a block-print graphic featuring a pair of intertwined wedding bands set in a modern knot surrounded by two fish. The couple used this personalized logo for all their wedding stationery.


    A Romantic Venue

    When a venue cradles a wedding as beautifully as Carondelet House cradled the Karp wedding, words fall short. Exposed brick, Italian architecture with subtle Art Deco flourishes, an eclectic collection of grand chandeliers, large farmhouse windows, and a cabin-in-the-woods fireplace.

    Everything a couple needs to shelter their friends and family in warmth and love. Exterior courtyards and rustic interiors provided effortless backdrops for frameable photos.

    Cozy table settings featured sliced pomegranates, green pears, citrus tree foliage, and gorgeous rose blossom bouquets. Gold tumblers, smoky purple wine glasses, and rose gold tableware exuded rustic romance. Customized cowboy napkins featured place cards and fun facts about the couple.


    Karp Wedding Flourishes

    Danielle offers solid advice in her interview with GWS*: "Make as many details specific to the two of you as you can...those were the details that people commented on the most because they were unique to our wedding."

    The couple dispensed with several traditions, including toasts and speeches, parent dances, cake cutting, and obligatory photo ops. "...I just wanted everyone to have an amazing time and not be interrupted with more words and photo opportunities I don’t love anyway..." she told GWS.

    In addition to these personal touches, Danielle set her vendors free. Rather than micromanaging her florist and caterers, she gave them a few guidelines and let them run wild.

    For this reason, her bouquets and floral centerpieces included uncommon elements. Pampas grass plumes, vintage roses in shades of white, burgundy, and peach. Also, an elaborate hanging centerpiece over the nuptial altar featuring grasses, pampas blooms, fall foliage, and white roses.

    I could go on and on about this wedding. For more details, visit the above link to GWS. I am so inspired by the way Danielle and Jensen approached their wedding. I hope you are too.

    *Thanks to Green Wedding Shoes for the in-depth coverage of the Fishel-Karp wedding.

  • A German Wedding Feast

    Head table during a German Wedding Reception


    A traditional German wedding reception began when the bride and groom left the church in a cart or carriage. Their guests followed behind all the way to their new home, where the party took place.


    Over the Threshhold

    The groom, carrying his bride, passed over the threshold first. Behind him, a friend tossed a beer stein over the roof, ensuring the grooms sobriety through the night.

    The couple shared a bite of bread, and then the wife assumed her wifely role by adding salt to the wedding soup, traditionally a beef, dumpling, and vegetable stew.

    The guests offered a gift in exchange for entrance to the party. After servers placed the first course on the tables, the inviter offered a toast to the bride and groom. Upon completing his speech, he drank his drink in one gulp and then tossed the glass behind him. The tinkling of shattered glass ensured good luck for the marriage.

    Throughout the dinner, the guests presented their gifts to the bride in groom in exchange for a drink from the bride. At some point mid-meal, the bride and groom stood. Taking a coin out of her shoe, the bride offered it to the musicians.

    The couple took to the dance floor for their first waltz as man and wife. Others joined in the dancing, until hunger overtook them again. Upon returning to their seats for another course of food, the cook emerged holding her bandaged hand. Once the groom paid her "for medicine," the German wedding feast resumed.


    German Wedding Frivolities

    Throughout the night, games ensued. One such game was the Bridal Cup, a hinged cup in the shape of a maiden who holds a cup over her head. At the hinge, the cup she holds and the skirt she wears offer drinking vessels for bride and groom. The groom drank champagne from the skirt, while the bride drank from the cup. Whoever finished first would "rule the nest."

    Friends of the groom might also spirit the bride away to a series of nearby pubs. In order to return her to the party, the groom searched the pubs, paying the bar tabs along the way.

    As midnight approached, one of the groomsmen crawled under the head table to slip the garters off each of the bridesmaid's legs. After cutting them into pieces, he distributed them to each man in attendance. The men wore them in their buttonholes.

    At midnight, the maidens helped the bride remove her bridal crown and replace it with a bonnet. The bride and groom cut the wedding cake, and then they blindfolded the bride. Her bridesmaids danced around her until she managed to catch one.


    After Midnight

    The one she caught then danced with a selection of the groom's male relatives around three lit candles set upon the floor. She would be the next maiden to marry, and if the candles remained lit throughout the dancing she expected a smooth courtship and marriage.

    Eventually, the partygoers escorted the bride and groom to the bridal chamber. Here, the couple expected more fun and games. First of all, coal and pieces of bread laid scattered about, a good omen of warmth and abundance.

    Balloons filled the room. Sometimes even the bed was taken apart, a final challenge for the couple to work as a team to rebuild their marriage bed. The next morning, the ringing of many hidden alarm clocks might awaken them.

    If the went outside, the couple must search for their car which their friends lifted in the night and carried to a secret location. All of this was done in good fun, and the bride and groom relished the antics of their good friends.

  • Mystical Qualities of Citrine, November's Birthstone


    Vintage 7 Carat Citrine & Diamond Cocktail Ring 14K A gorgeous Vintage Citrine & Diamond Cocktail Ring. Click here for more details. Photo ©2018 EraGem Jewelry.


    Citrine and diamonds grab the eye in this gorgeous vintage cocktail ring. Fashioned in white gold, the ring features a 7-carat golden yellow center stone which radiates like the sun.

    Tiers of white gold set with varying sizes of diamonds appear like flower petals or dazzling rays of the sun. This gorgeous design highlights the sunny disposition of November's mystical birthstone.


    Mystical Qualities of Citrine

    Long-revered for its positive energy, citrines empower women to calmly assess their surroundings to find their inner wisdom. Simultaneously, this powerful serenity carries over into matters of the heart, encouraging space for compassionate listening, forgiveness, and group harmony.

    Believed by ancients to harness the power of the sun, citrines grew popular in the aid of mental distress. Victorian healers recommended them to those suffering from depression or phobias. They encouraged their patients to wear the yellow quartz stones to heal the inner workings of the mind, to improve a person's outlook on the future, and to promote success.

    In fact, citrine soon earned distinction as the Stone of Success and the Merchant's Stone. Shop owners began keeping citrines in their cash registers, believing the stones brought good fortune. Likewise, those wishing for success in business carried or wore citrine to promote abundance and prosperity.


    Citrine Jewelry

    Although not for its legendary mystical qualities, citrine jewelry truly stands in a class of its own today. The sunny warmth of the stone and the abundance of the yellow quartz mineral in the earth has launched it as one of the most popular semi-precious stones on the market.

    Owing to citrine's natural transparency and abundance, large eye-clean stones serve as stunning centerpieces for elaborate statement pieces. Celebrities like Greta Garbo and Joan Crawford wore statement pieces featuring the yellow stone in the 1920s and 1930s. More recently, Kate Middleton, Angelina Jolie, and Kate Winslet carry on the tradition.

    Designers love citrine for its ability to take on multiple shapes and serve in both traditional and modern arrangements. Its density and hardness make it suitable for every day wear, and its reasonable cost allows for even those on a budget to own a spectacular specimen.

    Generally, the stone is fairly unisex, providing fashionable options for both men and women. And of course, as the birthstone for November, it is perfectly suited to any form of birthstone jewelry desired.

    To browse our complete selection of citrine jewelry, please give us a call to schedule an appointment with our knowledgeable sales staff.

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