Posts filed under ‘Gemstones’

Gem Lore: Black Onyx

Black Onyx

Onyx is a type of opaque chalcedony that comes in various colors.   Black onyx is one of the most popular stones in bead designing. Although it does occur naturally in black, it is generally dyed to achieve a more uniform color.

As to the lore of black onyx, among those who assign special powers to gemstones, it is believed that black onyx defends against negativity, boosts confidence, and sharpens your senses.

Black Onyx and Cinnabar Knotted Necklace

Black Onyx and Cinnabar Knotted Necklace


August 14, 2009 at 3:50 pm Leave a comment

Stone Shape Beads Per Inch

It’s easy to find a list of number of beads per 16″ strand for ROUND beads – but not for shape beads! I’ve had this list a long time, and I think it came from South Pacific Beads. It does start out with round beads, but includes all the great shapes, too – lentils, stars, twists.

Round: 2mm = 203 / 3mm = 136 / 4mm = 100 / 6mm = 67 / 8mm = 50

10mm = 41 / 12 mm = 34

Hearts: 6mm = 90

Thick Hearts: 12 mm = 36 / 20mm = 20

Stars: 6mm = 70

Twists: 8 x 20mm = 20

Lentils: 12mm = 40 / 20mm = 22

Leaves: 14 x 18mm = 20

Shells: 18 x 20mm = 20

Triangles: 16mm = 24

Rice: 5 x 12mm = 36

Melons: 4 x 6mm = 64

Rondelles: 3 x 5mm = 175

Cubes: 4 x 4mm = 102

Tubes: 3 x 5 = 80 / 4 x 13 = 30

Rectangles: 4 x 13mm = 30

Teardrops: 6 x16mm = 25 / 9 x 22mm = 19 (strung lengthwise)

Donuts: 20mm = 20 / 25mm = 15 / 30mm = 13 / 40mm = 10 / 45mm = 8

Discs: 3 x 5mm = 25

Cylinders: 13 x 4mm = 16

Pears: 16 x 7mm = 24


January 30, 2008 at 5:19 pm 2 comments

Gem Lore: Sodalite

Sodalite – properties and history

Sodalite is a mineral component of lapis lazuli. It is commonly mistaken for lapis because of its similar look. Unlike lapis, however, this rich blue gemstone rarely contains pyrite inclusions, and is a less expensive alternative to lapis. The name “sodalite” alludes to the sodium content of this stone. It comes in a massive form, translucent to opaque with a dark blue color, often streaked with white veins.

Sodalite was discovered in 1806 in Greenland. In 1891 large deposits of sodalite was found in Ontario, Canada. At that time, Princess Patricia of Connaught (1886-1974) used it as an interior decoration for Marlbourough House in England, setting the stage for sodalite to become used as an ornamental stone. Also due to her use of the sodalite, the stone became commonly known as “Princess Blue.” Today, the largest deposit of sodalite is in Brazil.

New Age Attributes:

Sodalite is thought to bring inner peace. It is also considered to be the stone of athletics, as it stimulates endurance. It is said sodalite will harmonize the inner being or the conscious and subconscious mind. Sodalite promotes peace and harmony. Sodalite is extra lucky for writers.

Sodalite is associated with the thyroid. Some believe that if you wear it in a necklace, it will help you lose weight and will give you confidence for public speaking.


Designing with Sodalite

Sodalite is a softer blue with more white inclusions than lapis. It looks lovely combined with white stones such as white marble, white agate, or white howlite.  Sodalite looks nice with gold or silver findings, and is especially pretty with the soft, bright gold of vermeil Bali beads.  Sodalite works well with a lapis lazuli pendant or focal bead(s).  For contrast, try sodalite with red cinnabar -it’s stunning!


January 25, 2008 at 7:02 pm Leave a comment


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