A Week in the life of me…

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It’s been quite a week — busy, busy, busy, and I feel like I am running all the time… but I love it! It’s amazing to feel energised about what you are doing, and I feel really fortunate this week to do what I do. Mania is probably another word for it, but I think that anyone who has their own business, or has worked doing something they love, has felt the same thing. As an entrepreneur, I feel really lucky to have the freedom (and the responsibility) to wear so many different hats throughout the course of my days, despite the fact that it can sometimes feel a bit overwhelming. Over the last week I have been: a jeweller, a calligrapher, a sales person, a landlord, a tattoo designer (love that one!), a web developer (not terribly skilled at this… or skilled at all), an accountant (ditto the developer skill level), a business planner, a housekeeper, a cat keeper (demanding little fur ball), a diplomat, a blogger, a graphic designer… The list goes on… and on…

So to all those out there who are running their own businesses and working hard at doing a thousand things at once, I send you a great big WAY TO GO! And for those of you who support people like me, an even bigger WAY TO GO! We couldn’t do it without you.

Enough from me for the moment. It’s back to the bench. With only 23 days to go before the Young Blood Markets, it’s time to get a move on!

x d

Sapphires, glorious sapphires – the perfect Engagement stone

I think that we have an obsession with diamonds. I love diamonds… who’s kidding who…but I also know that diamonds aren’t always in my price range for the size that I want. Enter coloured gemstones. Sapphires are an amazing alternative for engagement or wedding rings, and (usually) don’t cost nearly as much for lovely, big coloured stones.

We can thank Kate Middleton for the latest spark in sapphire fever. Her multi-carat stunner is a great example of a classic sapphire engagement ring design, surrounded by a diamond halo on a platinum band. What most people don’t know is that sapphires come in a huge rainbow of colours, from clear white to the deepest purple.

Colour range of sapphires

In terms of colour, there are “desired” colours — like cornflower blue for Ceylon sapphires — that are the most highly valued and priced, but other, less popular colours are forgotten. Gorgeous greens, soft yellows and hot pinks fall by the wayside in a lot of commercial jewellery in favour of the ever popular blue sapphire. My rule of thumb for coloured gems is that if you like the colour and the shape, don’t worry about whether it is “rare” or not. Pink sapphires grew in popularity when someone realized that those off-colour, pinkish rubies were actually kind of lovely. (Sapphires & Rubies share basically the same chemical make up. Rubies are red, and sapphires are all other colours)

The thing that makes sapphires great for day to day rings, like engagement rings, is that they are the closest gemstone in hardness to diamond. They will take all of the knocks, scratches and scrapes that any hardworking ring will, and stay looking pretty good over time. Also, because they come in so many great colours, you can choose the perfect colour for you.

So there you have it: a fabulous alternative to diamond for your engagement ring or wedding ring. Happy Monday!

White Gold Wave Ring with pink sapphires

Silver Tarnish be gone!

I was chatting to my friend Ali yesterday about jewellery (naturally!) who asked about a cleaning product for her silver jewellery. Since moving to Sydney, her jewellery  was looking really dull and tarnished–probably due to the lovely sea air! So, I thought I’d share my favourite tip with you on how to do this at home, without using commercial cleaners that often have all sorts of nasty chemicals in them that can irritate your skin.

You will need:

  • a glass bowl
  • aluminium foil to fit in the base of the bowl
  • hot water
  • bicarb
  • salt
  • an old toothbrush
  • a soft cloth

Pop the al foil in the bottom of your container and pour in hot water (not boiling, especially if your jewellery contains gems other than diamonds). Add a tablespoon or two of bicarb & salt and put your jewellery in the mixture. I left mine for fifteen minutes or so, and gave each piece a good brushing with the toothbrush to loosen any of the grit and tarnish. Once your pieces are looking a little brighter, remove them from the solution and give them a good wipe with your cloth. Ta da, clean jewellery!

*Please note: don’t use this on pearl jewellery. For pearl jewellery cleaning tips, please refer to my previous post about pearl care Pearls of Wisdom   

 

Brush the pieces with an old toothbrush to help remove tarnish

The ones on the left have been cleaned. Big difference!

What a difference! Especially on the mesh ring, which was very tarnished.