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Turquoise and Lapis
Sleeping Beauty turquoise is one of the most well known kinds of turquoise mined in the US.
Sleeping Beauty Turquoise
Sleeping Beauty Turquoise comes from the mine that bares the same named and is located right outside of Globe, Arizona. This stone is prefered by the Zuni people for it's sky blue color and lack of matrix.
Most of these Nacozari turquoise beads lack major matrix, letting the natural blue color shine through.
Nacozari Turquoise is found in Sonora, Mexico south of the Bisbee, Arizona in the same mountian range. Like the Sleeping Beauty Turquoise, this turquoise is desired for it's beautiful blue color and no matrix. Some beads contain tiny pyrite inclusions and white spots due to the stone's aluminum content.
Coming from one of the most productive mines in Nevada, these Fox turquoise beads have a beautiful blue green color with minimal matrix.
The Fox Turquoise mine is located in Northern Nevada near Lander County and is known for having been one of the largest producers of turquoise in the state. Other kinds of turquoise found in the Fox turquoise mine are called White Horse, Green Tree and Smith. Even though they all come from the same mine, they all have different names to differentiate among the different colors. The Fox turquoise beads that we carry are a blue green color with distinctive matrix.
Chinese turquoise can occur in a variety of color and matrix combinations.
Chinese Turquoise is currently the most common type of turquoise found in both jewelry and beads. In fact, one statistic claims that turquoise from Chinese mines make up about 80% of turquoise used in the United States. Chinese turquoise can naturally occur in a variety of light to dark blue and green hues with both black and brown matrix. Be aware that since not all Chinese turquoise is prime material it is commonly enhanced with resin (referred to as stabilized) and dyes and can even be reconstituted. We're picky about the turquoise we carry, so you won't find dyed and you'll never find reconstituted (ground chalk stone mixed with resin, dyed and formed into a brick and later cut into beads). Occasionally, we'll receive stabilized turquoise beads. When turquoise rough is too soft, the material is "stabilized" by infusing the stone with a clear epoxy resin that will harden the turquoise and deepen it's color. This allows a stone that wasn't previously strong enough for wear to be able to hold up to everyday wear. Unfortunately, it is also common to see dyed Howlite or white Magnesite referred to and sold as turquoise, and neither of those stone contain ANY turquoise. Imitation and reconstituted turquoise can cost as much as natural turquoise, so it is always best to buy from a reputable dealer that you trust to ensure that you always get what you paid for.
These turquoise nuggets, simply polished and top drilled, retain their naturally organic nugget shape.
Chinese turquoise is popularly cut into different sizes of teardrop shapes, perfect for earrings!
These donuts show how dramatic the color difference can be in Chinese turquoise beads.
Lapis, also know as lapiz lazuli, is primarily made up of the intense blue mineral lazurite and also contains gold toned pyrite and white calcite. Lapis is a stone with a long history. It has been used in adornment and everyday life for thousands of years by the Egyptians. In addition to using lapiz in jewelry, it was also ground into powder for cosmetic uses (the first eye shadow) and medicinal uses. Afghanistan remains a major source for high quality lapis, but deposits can also be found in Chile, Italy, Argentina and the US. It is believed that lapis can bring the wearer inner peace and enhance their memory.
The picture to the left shows examples of our lapis bead collection.
Prices mentioned in Lost Cities' emails, blogs, handouts, websites, etc. are effective the date of publication. They are subject to market conditions and availability and may be modified as necessary at Lost Cities' discretion. Lost Cities Beads 2802 Juan St. #14 San Diego, CA 92110 (619) 692-1114 Monday-Saturday 10am - 6pm Sunday 10am - 5pm Closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day Questions, comments? Contact us either by phone during business hours, or email us at email@example.com. Copyright Lost Cities 2009