Joie de Vivre jewelry
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Organics Plus contains stones formed from organic material, such as compressed decaying wood or tree resin, calcite, and native metals like copper, silver and gold. The beads and components lack silica and they are soft (Mohs hardness <= 3) and the stones are often porous. Calcite is in the carbonates mineral group that includes stones with the carbonate ion CO3 (2-) as the structural basis. Jet is a type of lignite (precursor to coal) that resulted from decaying wood under high pressure millions of years ago. Amber is formed from the resin of ancient pine trees and gained renewed interest from the Jurassic Park movies. Plants and animals caught in the sticky, viscous tree resin could be embalmed in the amber as it hardened. Copper, silver and gold are referred to as native metals because they are made from a single element rather than combinations of elements. (Diamond is a native element of carbon but much, much harder.) Metals used for jewelry are typically alloys and harder than their native Mohs hardness, but I group the metals here for simplicity.

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Twining Amber

Amber is fossilized resin, most often from extinct conifers. Most amber comes from the Baltic coast, encircled by countries of northern Europe and Scandinavia. Most is rich golden yellow-orange in color, but it can also occur in white, green or blue colors. Green amber is popular but rare, and most green amber used in jewelry components has been heat-treated to accentuate the color. Amber has a long history of use, with cups from the Bronze age through intricate rooms in the palace of kings (the "Amber Room" in Catherine the Great's palace). It was often the tears of the gods (Apollo wept amber tears on being banished from Olympus; the Heliades sisters wept amber tears for their brother Phaethon) and represents the division between individual and cosmic energy.

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Bright Spot

Ammolite is a trade name given to a thin iridescent aragonite shell material found on ammonite fossils. It's a rare material, and most cabochons used in jewelry are from mines in Alberta, Canada. The highest quality ammolite shows play-of-light as dramatic as opal or more so. Like opal, the material is generally sandwiched between a darker base layer and a clear resin coating for protection.

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Hold On
Hypotrochoid #3
Small Folk
Always a Rose
Mauna Loa
Dia de los Muertos (gold)
Dia de los Muertos (silv)
Verb #2
Oort Cloud
Spiral Galaxy
Power of Love

Brass is a metal alloy of copper and zinc whose properties depend on the proportion of the zinc. It has a relatively low melting point and flows easily, making it a good metal for casting. Many jewelry findings have a brass base metal plated with silver or gold or other coatings, though brass jewelry is gaining popularity as a less expensive and attractive option to gold.

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Via de la Luna
Little Bird
Bronze Sickle Moon
Bees to Honey
Your Heart is a Muscle (bronze)
Bronze Drop
Data Types
Fibonacci Squares

Like brass, bronze is a copper-based metal alloy though bronze uses tin rather than zinc and it tends to be a higher percentage copper than brass for a warmer rose gold hue. Like brass, it is a good metal for casting and favored among sculptors because it expands slightly before setting, imparting the finer details of the mould.

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Be Like Water
Cloud Nine
Peach Tree

Calcite is the most common form of calcium carbonate, from the carbonate group (CO3). Carbonates tend to be soft and generally found everywhere. Most Egyptian alabaster is actually calcite. Large crystals are common, though large translucent pieces are less so. The translucent pieces demonstrate the property of double refraction, where an image through the material appears doubled though shifted. This is due to differing indices of refraction within calcite that "bend" incident light differently.

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No Drama Llama
Line & Circle
Worm Hole
Denizen of the Deep
Happy Halloween
A Little Love
Eye to the Ocean
Love for Teachers
Our Lady
Existential Angst
Old World
Old World #2
Living Strength #2
Living Strength
The Oak
Nom de Plume
Best Behavior #2
Olive Branch
Prickly Pear
Thing With Feathers
Going Batty
Bird on a Wire
Hope Springs Eternal
Crafty Birds
Good Hearted
Good Luck & Fortune
Savor the Moment
Same But Different
Power of Love
Be Like Water #2
Good Advice
Casting Off
Seriously Sci-fi
You Work in an Office Pt.3
Lo Orto
All Clear
Beep Beep
You Work in an Office Pt 2
Ponderosa Pine
Pseudotsuga Menziesii
High Five
Have a Heart
Balance #2
Person of Action
Dia de los Muertos
This Is Not Rhetorical

Copper has the native element with the distinction of being one of the first to be used by humans. Neolithic people used it as a substitute for stone, and Egyptians first cast it in molds. It is found in crystalline and massive aggregate forms. Copper is a secondary mineral that forms as large iron-rich molten rock cools; copper-rich fluids are the last to solidify. It's often found in deposits with other native elements like zinc, lead, gold and silver. In native form it is soft, though many copper alloys are available that are harder. Bronze is copper-tin alloy and brass is a copper-zinc alloy.

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The Bends
New Moon
Going Om
Honey Bee
Rose Red
2S Orbital - sodalite
Eye of Horus
Love for Teachers
Our Lady
Grand Canal
Beauty Within
Seriously Sci-fi
Black Mamba
Small Folk
Mystic Oak
Irresistible (gold)
Tree of Life
Exceptional #2

Gold captures the imagination as few minerals and elements can; it has been prized throughout civilizations for its beauty and usefulness. It reacts with few materials, so gold-bearing minerals are rare and tend to be localized, though gold as an element is distributed in minute quantities throughout igneous rock. It is estimated that half the world's known gold reserves are found in South Africa. Though there are numerous industrial applications, such as window coatings to reflect infrared radiation and reduce air-conditioning costs for large office buildings, but the most popular use is still within jewelry, as it has been for thousands of years.

•• j e t

Family Araucariaceae

Jet is a lignite coal, which is intermediate in terms of carbon-content and hardness in the formation of coal. Coal starts with decaying vegetable matter in the absence of oxygen, forming peat. Peat under pressure results in lignite coal, and additional heat and pressure transform lignite coal to bituminous coal and finally anthracite (most highly metamorphosed and hardest coal). Jet typically originates from wood from the trees of family Araucariaceae, which includes the modern-day monkey puzzle tree and other very tall evergreens like the New Zealand "Lord of the Forest" kauri tree.

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With the Tide
Magic Bean
Epic Journey
Love Gives Wings
Quiet Wisdom
Take Flight

Pewter is an alloy of greater than 90% tin with small amounts of copper and antimony. It is a soft metal and has a low melting point, making it suitable for casting - even in a household kitchen! The pewter components I buy are advertised as lead-free, and this is generally the standard for items intended for daily use.

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Silver Lode
Flower Garden
More Circles
Phoenix Tears
Circle Drop
Emerald Essence
Lucky Charms
No Drama Llama
2S Orbital - zoisite
Binary Star System
Line & Circle
Cosmic Ray
Pea Pod
A Little Love
Eye to the Ocean
Head is to Heart
Living Strength #2
Living Strength
The Oak
Nom de Plume
Best Behavior #2
Olive Branch
Prickly Pear
Thing With Feathers
Going Batty
Bird on a Wire
Hope Springs Eternal
Good Hearted
Good Luck & Fortune
Be Like Water #2
Bees to Honey
Polar Bear
Love Always
Silken Strands
Delicious #4
Reminder #2
Reminder #3
Party Girl
Your Heart is a Muscle (silver)
Irresistible (silver)
Good Boy
The Grand Canyon State
Cup & Spiral
Leaf & Spiral
Lilies of the Field
Open Range
Exceptional #3
To Be Or Not To Be

Like gold, silver has a long history with civilizations across the world. The chemical symbol, Ag, comes from the Latin word for silver, argentum, which itself has its origins in Sanskrit meaning "white" and "shining". Mexico is the world's leading producer of silver, though much of the world's supply is generated by refining other metals like copper and zinc. Sterling silver is 92.5 percent silver with another metal such as copper added to increase hardness and durability. Silver is often associated with the Moon and divine wisdom.

••  m a t e r i a l   t y p e   l i n k s

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