Materials

MATERIALS

Oxette uses materials of utmost quality. Sterling precious silver 925, gold-plating composed of 18 karat, all metals made nickel-free, rhodium coated, and all complimented by materials made from natural semi-precious stones, and imported from all over the world. Each material is chosen for its uniqueness and individuality.

These materials, bound up together in remarkable geometrical motifs, are made primarily by hand following the latest techniques in the company’s laboratory.

Gemstones Definition: A gemstone is the naturally occurring crystalline form of a mineral which is desirable for its beauty, valuable in its rarity and durable enough to be enjoyed for generations.Gemstones are among the most individual of nature’s creations: perfect crystals, with no two alike. Some gemstone varieties have been treasured since before history began and others were only discovered recently. There are more than 30 popular gem varieties and many more collector gemstones. Some varieties also come in a great range of colors.

The Gemstone “Rainbow Gemstones” are the most intensely colored natural material available on earth. Gems have become so synonymous with color, they have even lent their names to their colors. Everyone knows ruby red, aquamarine, turquoise and jade green, but the world of gemstones today has an even more extensive selection of colors which spam the entire rainbow. The wide range of gemstones used in Oxette’s creations means that no matter what the customer’s color or style,a gemstone is available to match every price range.

Agate: No gemstone is more creatively striped by nature than agate, chalecedony quartz that forms concentric layers in a wide variety of colors and textures. Each individual agate forms by filling a cavity in host rock. As a result, agate often is foundas a round nodule, with concentric bands like the rings of a tree trunk. The bands sometimes look like eyes, sometimes fanciful scallops, or even a landscape with dendrite trees. Agate was highly valued as a talisman or amulet in ancient times. It was said to quench thirst and protect from fevers. Persian magicians used agate to divert storms.

Amethyst: Purple has long been considered a royal color so it is not surprising that amethyst has been so much in demand during history. Amethyst, transparent purple quartz, is the most important quartz variety used in Oxette jewelry. Amethyst is mined in Brazil, Uruguay, Bolivia and Argentina, as well as in Zambia, Namibia and other African countries. Amethyst ranges in color from pale lilac to deep purple. The pale colors are sometimes called “Rose de France” and can be seen set in Victorian jewelry. The deep colors are the most valuable, particularly a rich purple with rose flashes.

Aquamarine: From lightest sky-blue to the deep blue of the sea – aquamarines show all these shades of an exceptionally beautiful range of usually light blues. It is a truly fascinating stone. Women all over the world covet it because of its fine blue color, which suits almost any complexion or eye-color to perfection, and creative gemstone artists get their inspiration for new cuts more often from aquamarines than from other stones. Aquamarine is usually almost free of inclusions. It possesses a good hardness (7 _ to 7 _ on Mohs’ scale of mineral hardness), and a breathtaking brilliance. Its good hardness makes it quite robust and protects it generally from getting scratched. Iron is the substance responsible for the color in Aquamarine, and the shades of blue displayed range from almost colorless pale blue through to bright sea blue. Aquamarine, the higher its value. Some Aquamarines show a slightly greenish hue – that is also considered typical. Clear and transparent in classical steps cut, or as modern fancy cut, Aquamarine is always fascinating and beautiful. Even uncut or with many inclusions, which designers often opt to include on purpose when developing their cuts, the stone is ideal for realizing imaginative creations. Sometimes the design of the cuts adds special appeal to a stone which include theseimperfections creating special effects. Aquamarine’s light color allows for a special creative freedom for designers to bring out the character and brilliance of a stone by integrating fine fissures and traces, rounded shapes as well as edges. Thus each Aquamarine becomes a unique original, which no woman will be able to resist.

Citrine: Citrine is one of the most affordable gemstones, thanks to the durability and availability of this golden quartz. Named from the French name for lemon,”citron,” many citrines have a juicy lemon color. Citrine includes yellow to gold to orange brown shades of transparent quartz. Sunny and affordable, citrine can brighten almost any jewellery style, blen
ding especially well with the yellow gleam of polished gold. Citrine is generally more inexpensive than amethyst and is also available in a wide range of calibrated sizes and shapes, including very large sizes. Most citrine is mined in Brazil. Citrine is good from the Brazilian state of Rio Grande do Sul, particularly from the Serra mine. Since most citrine start their life as amethyst which was heated to turn its color to gold, citrine jewelry, as well as amethyst jewelry, should be kept away from prolonged exposure to strong light or heat. With this precaution, citrine jewelry will last for many generations.

Coral: Coral belongs to the most attractive of jewellery materials that can be imagined, and keeps on inspiring Oxette jewellery designers to develop charming and unique designs. Coral enhances jewellery to a stage of breathtaking charm: the perfect embodiment of mankind’s yearning for summer, sun and faraway seas.Corals live in depths between three to three thousand meters in the seawatersSurrounding Japan, Taiwan and the Malayan Archipelago, in the Red Sea, the Biscayan Gulf and around the Canary Islands, but also in north-eastern Australia and off the Midway Islands. In the Mediterranean there are Coral reefs all around the Tyrrhenian Sea, along the coastline of Sardinia and also off the shores of Tunisia and Algeria, Yugoslavia and Turkey. Like pearls, Corals also belong to the organic jewellery material. It is an interesting phenomenon indeed that both are products of the element water, and are in fact chemically related. Both consist of over 90% carbonic lime. It is a virtual miracle that Nature manages to use the same dull material to create fiery red Coral and to grow beautiful pearls. Corals are not too sensitive, but with their hardness of only 3.5 they are considerably softer than any other gemstone material. Their beauty will suffer from inappropriate treatment. Cosmetic products, hot water and bright daylight are detrimental to their beauty. Coral jewellery should be carefully stored and be c leaned from time to time with a soft, damp cloth.

Hematite: Hematite’s color vary from steel or silver gray to black in some forms and red to brown in earthy forms. Sometimes tarnished with irredescent colors when in a hydrated form (called Turgite).It has several varieties, each with their own unique names: Hematite Rose is a circular arrangement of bladed crystals giving the appearance of the flower of a rose. Tiger Iron is a sedimentary deposit of approximately 2.2 billion years old that consists of alternating layers of silver gray hematite and red jasper, chert or even tiger eye quartz. Oolitic Hematite isa sedimentary formation that has a reddish brown color and an earthy luster and is composed of small rounded grains. Specularite is a micaceous or flaky stone that is sparkling silver gray and sometimes used as an ornamental stone. Hematite is an important ore of iron and it’s blood red color (in the powdered form) lends itself well in use as a pigment. Hematite gets its name from a greek word meaning blood-like because of the color of its powder. Ancient superstition held that large deposits of hematite formed from battles that were fought and the subsequent blood that flowed into the ground.

Jade: For thousands of years, jade has been a symbol of love and virtue as well as a status symbol. The ancient jade carved in China was what we today call nephrite jade: an amphibolite mineral. (Interestingly enough, the word nephrite comes from the Greek word for kidney, nephros, a bit more scholarly version of the same thing.) In the 19th Century , it was discovered that the material from the new world was not the same mineral as the jade from China. The mineral from Central America, a pyroxene, was called jadeite to distinguish it from the original nephrite. Because of its smooth even texture, jade has long been a preferred material for carving. The most common shape is the flat donut-shaped disc called a pi, which is commonly worn as a necklace. Jadeite jade is most treasured for its vivid greens, but it also comes in lavender, pink, yellow, and white. Nephrite is found in less intense dark spinach greens, white, browns, and black. Both jadeite and nephrite are very durable and tough, although jadeite is slightly harder than nephrite due to its microcrystalline structure.

Labradorite: Labradorite is truly a fascinatingly beautiful mineral. It can produce a colorful play of light across cleavage planes and in sliced sections called labradorescence. The usually intense colors range from the typical blues and violets through greens, yellows and oranges. The color display is from lamellar intergrowths inside the crystal. These intergrowths result from compatible chemistries at high temperatures becoming incompatible at lower temperatures and thus a separating and layering of these two phases. The resulting color effect is caused by a ray of light entering a layer and being refracted back and forth by deeper layers. This refracted ray is slowed by the extra travel through the layers and mixes with other rays to produce a light ray that exists with a different wavelength than from when it came in. The wavelength could correspond to the wavelength of a particular color, such as blue.

Malachite: is a famous and very popular semi-precious stone. It is named for the Greek word for “mallow”, a green herb. Its banded light and dark green designs are one-of-a-kind, and give it a unique ornamental quality unlike that of any other stone. The light and dark green bands are so distinctive that malachite maybe one of the most easily recognized minerals by the general public. It forms the banding from subtle changes in the oxidation states of the surrounding pore waters, but the exact mechanism is still not well understood. Many beautiful specimens of malachite contain special combinations with other minerals. Such combinations are some of the most colorful mineral assortments in the mineral world. They include such stunningly colorful minerals as dark blue azurite, sparkling black mottramite, baby blue chrysocolla, or rusty red limonite.

Mineral Stones: A stone in order to be named mineral must be:• Solid. (Mercury, though very shiny, need not apply.)• Crystalline. This applies to the mineral gem stone diamond, the hardest of all natural substances, as well as the mineral graphite, one of the softest. Both are made of carbon crystals.• Inorganic. Even though the diamond is made of carbon, the basis for most organic compounds, it does not originate from once living material.• Homogeneous. The substance must be made up of a single element, like the carbon based diamond, or a single chemical compound, like the aluminum oxide based sapphire.• Naturally Occurring. A substance must be formed in the earth over time and extracted before it can be considered a mineral or a mineral gem stone. Though many gem stones have been fabricated in the lab with composition identical to their mineral gem stone models, they are not considered minerals.

Obsidian: Obsidian’ s color vary from dark green to dark brown and black, and can also show sheens of gold or green, yellow, blue and/or purple coloration. It is sometimes found with white inclusions (Snowflake Obsidian). Obsidian is the result of volcanic lava coming in contact with water. Often the lava pours into alake or ocean and is cooled quickly. This process produces a glassy texture in the resulting rock. Iron and magnesium give the obsidian a dark green to black color. Obsidian has been used by ancient people as a cutting tool, for weapons, and for ceremonial purposes and is sometimes found by archaeologists in excavations.Obsidian has several varieties. Obsidian can contain small bubbles of air that are aligned along layers created as
the molten rock was flowing just before being cooled. These bubbles can produce interesting effects such as a golden sheen, known as Sheen Obsidian or a rainbow sheen called Rainbow Obsidian. Inclusions of small, white, radially clustered crystals of cristobalite in the black glass produce a blotchy or snowflake pattern producing Snowflake Obsidian. Small nuggets of obsidian that have been naturally rounded and smoothed by windand water are called Apache Tears.

Onyx: In fashion jewellery design, a black backdrop is often supplied by onyx, a chalcedony quartz, with a fine texture and black color. Some onyx also displays white bands or ribbons against a black background. If the layers are even, this type of onyx can be carved into cameos. Onyx was very popular with the ancient Greeks and Romans. The name comes from the Greek word onux, which means fingernail. Black onyx especially shines when used a backdrop for color play. Its fine texture also makes itideal for carving, making it a favored material for today’s lapidary artists. Onyx was often used as the perfect foil for carved rock crystal or the drop dead red of rubies in Art deco designs. It is also popular in marquisate jewellery.

Quartz: Beautiful quartz, the “rock crystal” used in ancient times to make crystal balls and bowls, is today more often seen set in silver jewellery. The quartz gems like amethyst, citrine, ametrine, rose quartz, onyx, agates, chrysoprase, rutilated quartz, and other quartz gemstone varieties, are in a great majority of Oxettecreations and have an affordable price. Purple to violet amethyst and yellow to orange citrine are jewellery staples that continue to increase in popularity. Ametrinecombines the appeal of both amethyst and citrine as well as both the purple andyellow in one bicolored gemstone. Different colors and types of chalcedony, from agate to chrysoprase, have grown in popularity with the growing appreciation for carved gemstones and art cutting and carving. And unusu al quartz specialties likedrusy quartz, with its surface covered by tiny sparking crystals, and rutilated quartz, which has a landscape of shining gold needles inside, are adding variety and nature’s artistry to unusual oneof- a-kind jewellery.

Rhodonite: Rhodonite is an attractive mineral that is often carved and used in Oxette jewellery. It is named after the Greek word for rose, rhodon. Its rose-pink color is distinctive and highly appreciated by collectors. Its color vary form typicall pink to red or orange and even black.

Rutilated quartz and Tourmalinated quartz: While most varieties of transparent quartz are valued most when they lack inclusions, some varieties are valued chiefly because of inclusions! The most popular of these is known as rutilated quartz. Rutilated quartz is transparent rock crystal with golden needles of rutile arrayed in patterns inside. Every pattern is different and some are stunningly beautiful. The inclusions are sometimes called Venus hair. Less well known is a variety called tourmalinated quartz which, instead of golden rutile, has black or dark green tourmaline crystals.

Turquoise: Turquoise is a copper aluminum phosphate achieving hardness six, thus considerably softer than quartz. It occurs naturally in all shades ranging from sky-blue to grey-green. The blue colour is caused by copper, while the green colour is caused by iron or chromium. Often the material is veined or shows spots, which depending on the respective occurrence are brown, light grey or even black. These vivid, more or less regular patterns are called the spider web. The micro-crystals are really tiny and almost not discernible with the bare eye. Usually turquoise occurs as encrustation, in veins or as nodules or nuggets. The most beautiful of Turquoises in wonderful light blue are found in Northern Iran. Turquoise is only rarely faceted. Usually it is shaped as cabochon or a bead, or even given a fancy cut. They are relatively soft gemstones and thus quite sensitive. Since the color may also fade out in the course of wearing, today even the top qualities receive a waxing and subsequent hardening treatment. This procedure will make the sensitive gemstone sturdier. Turquoises which have been sealed with artificial resin are available at competitive prices. Their color appears fresh, and they show a high resistance. In addition, there are also “reconstructed” Turquoises, which have been assembled from pulverized Turquoise. Turquoise should be protected from cosmetics, heat and bright daylight. The gemstone does not really appreciate sunbathing. It is recommended to clean it from time to time after wearing with a soft cloth.

Zircon: The wide variety of colors of zircon, its rarity, and its relatively low cost make it a popular collector’s stone. Collectors enjoy the search for all possible colors and variations. The name probably comes from the Persian word zargun which means “gold-colored,” although zircon comes in a wide range of different colors.Zircon occurs in a wide range of colors but for many years, the most popular was the colorless variety which looks more like diamond than any other natural stone due to its brilliance and dispersion. Zircon is also available in green, dark red, yellow, brown, and orange.

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