Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Sleeping Beauty

Although I have seen, and own, many beautiful examples of Chinese turquoise, in my heart of hearts, I still love the turquoise mined in the United States the best. Words like Kingman, Fox, No. 8, Morenci and Blue Gem make me drool. (For the uninitiated, these types of turquoise bear the names of the mine from which they originate.) Of these, though, my favorites right now are probably Bisbee and Sleeping Beauty. Like many people, I particularly love the pure robin's egg blue color of Sleeping Beauty turquoise which always reminds me of the sky. This is my current favorite strand of the stone - beautiful slices that have been polished on the cut surfaces and left rough on the edges. They look exactly like something you could make a wish on and have it come true. Any other turquoise lovers out there? Tell me your favorites, if you have them - I'd love to hear about them.

I spent last night reviewing five magazine contracts. What I find more and more as I continue in my interesting journey in the world of bead and jewelry design is that it really does become difficult to juggle different tasks and find time for everything - the administrative work and retail maintenance, the design process for both beads and jewelry, the submission process, the write-ups, the contract review, etc., etc. I seem to be perpetually behind on everything. I haven't designed a really new, substantial piece from metal clay since spring (although I have many ideas in my idea book), and this really bothers me. I have a decent number of projects in the pipeline for publication, but I need to keep creating more and stay on top of deadlines to keep the momentum going. I don't know why I'm so surprised, but like many professions, I think that what bead makers and jewelry designers do is like a glacier - 9/10ths of the work is invisible to the eye. I have so much respect for my friends and colleagues who have been doing this work and living (and living well) on their creative spirit, so to speak, for years and, yet, who remain open and generous people. It's not an easy thing to do!

Right, I should stop talking and start working now. Have a great day.


SueBeads said...

I love sleeping beauty turquoise too! Now, if I could just afford it!

Amanda said...

I love turquoise, but certain kinds catch my eye more than others. Turquoise with a lot of matrix, for instance... or very finely-matrixed turquoise. No matrix, and I find myself a little bit less interested. Too much matrix and it's okay depending on the size of the stone, but unless it's a nugget, I feel like my stone is cracking open. I can't say that it's my favorite stone of all time (I'm too conflicted to pick just one), although I'm trying my darndest to accumulate enough turquoise to work with.

One of my favorite turquoise-lovers is Janice of Goddess Findings - Jewels for the Spirit. I'm not sure if you're familiar with her or not, but she has a deep, undying love for the stone, and she actually blogs about it rather often, too! Her blog is here:


Melissa J. Lee said...

Hi suebeads, I hear you! You can find some reasonably priced stuff out there in nugget form, but it'll have matrix and won't have that same classic smooth robin's egg blue aura to it.

Hi Amanda, I know what you mean about the matrix - it's one of the reason I love Bisbee turquoise - very distinctive beautiful matrix (at least, the pieces I've seen were like that). Ooh, I'm not familiar with her work - I will check out her link. Thanks!