One of the most fascinating things about Pearls over most other gemstones, is that it needs no polishing or cutting, they are naturally "Pearl-fect"! It is a natural, organic product from a living creature - How cool! Another interesting thing is they are like fingerprints, meaning that no two Pearls are exactly alike. Any Mollusk that produces a shell can produce a Pearl. This includes Abalone, Marine Snails, Clams, & Oysters.
The notion that a Pearl is formed when a grain of sand enters the shell of an Oyster is a myth. Its actually from a parasite or a chunk of shell that lodged itself in the soft tissue on the inner body of the Oyster. This causes the irritated area to emit a crystalline substance called Nacre. This builds up layer after layer, eventually forming a small Pearl. Pearls are developed in just a few short months, but can keep growing for up to 20 years!
Freshwater and saltwater Pearls look similar but are sourced from different locations. Freshwater Pearls come from various species of freshwater Mussels that are found in Lakes, Rivers, Ponds, and other bodies of fresh water. Saltwater Pearls are found in Pearl Oysters from the Ocean. Today, cultured Pearls from Pearl Oysters & freshwater Mussels make up majority of those currently on the market. Due to over harvesting back in the 1800's many natural Pearl beds were destroyed, so natural saltwater Pearls aren't as easy to find anymore.
Shop Pearl Jewelry at any of our 3 galleries: Santa Fe, NM. Taos, NM. & Sedona, AZ. Or Shop Online Here
Memorial day, the day where every American memorializes all the brave men and woman who fought to protect our country. It's been celebrated in the U.S. for over 150 years, and lands on the 4th Monday in May. It originally landed on May 30th every year but was changed about 50 years ago. It was also formerly known as "Decoration Day" because most Americans would spend the holiday decorating the grave of their fallen soldiers with flowers, flags, and much more. Lots of Americans still celebrate this way, but ever since The Uniform Monday Holiday Act took place back in 1971, most people spend this holiday off work or out of school with their loved ones. Some believed it was at the end of May so that the flowers all across America was in full bloom. Whether that is true or not, it still makes us smile. Make sure to give thanks to all the veterans in your life this year, they deserve it the most!
"No person was ever honored for what he received. Honor has been the reward for what he gave."
Special Limited time event! Come see Naomi the Tiny Triceratops!
Naomi, found in Garfield County, Montana, was a young Triceratops that lived during the late Cretaceous Period, 66-68 MYA! Though we cannot know for sure, the delicate nature of the bones in this fossil leads discoverers to believe that our young Triceratops was a female. The Triceratops fossil is from the Lateral side of the skull and measures 32” in length. An adult triceratops skull measures at 80” in length. The state of Montana has unearthed a total of 75 different species of dinosaurs, the most in the entire country! Millions of years ago, nesting dinosaurs lived in the coastal plains next to the inland sea that Is now known as Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho. Younger dinosaurs are rarely discovered. A remarkable piece to see for yourself! Naomi will be in Touchstone gallery in Sedona for the weekend of May 20th and then she will be moved to the Santa Fe Gallery a couple weeks after! You won't want to miss her!
Click Here to purchase this remarkable piece of history!
Mother's Day is just right around the corner. All around the globe, there are moms that go above and beyond, and sacrifice so much for us. So, this year we should treat her with what she really deserves... Emeralds!
Emerald is a variety of the mineral Beryl, which is a silicate of Beryllium and Aluminum. It gets its famously rich green color from trace amounts of Chromium and/or Vanadium. The color can range from yellow-green, to blue-green, with the primary color always being green. The inclusions and fissures in an Emerald are sometimes referred to as 'Jardin', French for 'Garden', because of it's mossy display.
Emeralds have been found all over the world like, Afghanistan, Brazil, China, Madagascar, and so much more! The finest quality Emeralds are mined in Columbia, which is one of the largest producers of this beautiful Gem. On its own, Columbia produces over 50% of Emeralds. Another large producer is Zambia, producing about 25%. One of the earliest discoveries of Emerald mines was located in Ancient Egypt around 330 BC.
Shop these pieces and more on our website or any of our 3 locations, Santa Fe & Taos, NM & Sedona, AZ.
Grape Chalcedony is very new to the Crystal market, it was introduced around 2016. Although it's discovery is very recent, that didn't stop the popularity from growing like it did, with a name like that, no wonder it is already loved by so many. Tiny spheres of purple Quartz make up this remarkable mineral resembling a cluster of grapes. Because of this, most people know this Crystal by the name "Grape Agate" but it is actually not an Agate at all. In fact, the true technical term for this Crystal is Botryoidal Purple Chalcedony, but that is a mouth full and doesn't sound as exciting as Grape Agate!
It was found in a small section of Indonesia, more specifically the Mamuju area of the Western Sulawesi Coast. Grape Chalcedony can be found in a variety of colors, some being blue, green, & grey, but the most prominent color being purple. The purples can range from a dark rich purple to a light lilac purple. Some Crystals have been found with multiple colors in them, like purple and green, these are extremely rare and a bit more valuable.
Grape Chalcedony is considered a dream stone. It has been said that if you place the Crystal on your nightstand or under your pillow at night, it will help help you remember and understand your dreams better and also help fight of the bad dreams. It's a Crystal with nurturing properties, it can promote a feeling of kindness and inner peace. It brings feelings of self confidence and security. Grape Chalcedony is truly something special. Its almost hard to believe this came out of the ground!
Shop the collection at any of our Galleries, Santa Fe & Taos, NM & Sedona, AZ.
April is here, that means it's Diamond month, yay! This month we will be shinning the spotlight on Herkimer and Payson Diamonds.
Herkimer Diamond is an exceptional Mineral loved and sought after by many people, especially by Mineral enthusiasts. Herkimer is a double terminated Crystal (points on both ends) and is naturally faceted. It originates from Herkimer County New York, plenty of people visit the city of Herkimer to mine this Diamond. For the best results, people use crowbars, sledgehammers and heavy chisels to chip away at the Dolostone to reveal pockets or cavities full of Herkimer Diamonds. Some pockets can be as small as a pea, and some can be a big as six feet in diameter, containing up to thousands of Diamonds in the one pocket. An extremely rare and lucky find would contain a Herkimer Diamond with Enhydro (water bubble inside) and flakes of Anthraxolite (bits of black coal-like substance) floating around inside the water bubble.
Formed in the mountains of Sedona Arizona, Payson Diamonds are also naturally faceted and a double terminated Crystal, found in a wide range of clarity and sizes. Payson crystals are often naturally stained a reddish rust color from the Arizona limonite. Many people are drawn to this Diamond because of the Metaphysical properties associated with it. It's believed that Payson Diamonds are the high energy seekers of the Crystal world. Payson Diamonds are also considered a Power Stone in the workplace, bringing positive attention through your achievements.
Visit us at any of our 3 locations, Santa Fe, & Taos, NM, and Sedona, Az.
Aquamarine is a durable stone that mirrors the tint of various bodies of water. The name itself is Latin for "seawater", Aqua meaning "water" and Marina meaning "of the sea". In ancient times, many people had lots of presumptions about what powers this stone has. Out at sea, Romans referred Aquamarine as the "sailors gem" believing it brought them a safe passage during the stormy weather. It was also believed by some that the stone was a symbol for happiness and everlasting youth. In medieval times, people were convinced that Aquamarine would reawaken the love between married couples.
The stone can show a variety of colors, such as blue, green, yellow, or it may even appear colorless depending on the angle it's viewed. The term for this is called The Pleochroic Effect. To bring out the color, majority of the stones have been heat treated. Around 800 degrees Fahrenheit will bring out the blue tones and fade out the green/yellow tones. Back in the 19th century, the sea green color was most popular, but today the blue tones are much more favored.
A very popular cut for Aquamarine is the Emerald cut followed by Oval & Pear shaped cuts. To find the highest quality stones, you will need to travel over to Brazil. This is also where one of the largest Aquamarine was found, weighing in at 243lbs! It was then cut into many smaller pieces, yielding over 200,000 carats. The stone can also be found in Afghanistan, the Soviet Union, India, United States, Pakistan, and Madagascar (where some darker blue stones are found).
Garnet is the name of a group of minerals that come in a rainbow of colors, from deep red in the pyrope garnet (pictured above), to the vibrant green of tsavorites. The most common color of garnet ranges from fire red to a deep violet-red hue.
Fuchsite, also known as chrome mica is one of the matrices that this gemstone is found. Fuchsite fluoresces lime green under a normal longwave U.V. light which surely is a site to see! It measures (1' 8" tall, 11" wide and 5.5" thickness) it weighs (52 LBS).
The garnet jewelry collection is available in all three galleries and the Fuchsite-garnet will be featured in our Santa Fe location beginning January 2022.
December's Birthstone: Blue Topaz and Decorative White Marble Collection just in time for the holidays
Decorative White Marble Plates, Chargers, Bowls, and Urns
Topaz is a hard gemstone and lends itself to the many faceted shapes that it can be cut into and is also a very durable stone. It is very similar in appearance to quartz and can be difficult to tell them apart. Natural Topaz starts out as red but then is heated to become the various shades of blue colors like London Blue, Swiss Blue and Sky Blue.
Care: Clean your Blue Topaz jewelry with a soft brush.
Touchstone has created an assortment of heartfelt jewelry. The beautiful blush pink druzy jewelry collection are specifically created to be a supportive and commemorative gesture to those who have had struggles with cancer in the past. Our hearts go out to the families that are currently fighting their own battle with cancer. We hope that these pieces of jewelry can show tenderness, love, and hope in the face of adversity.
Seven Years Strong!
Learn more about minerals & fossils.