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Cecile Raley Designs — gemstone

Tucson Treasures

Posted by Cecile Raley on


I got back from Tucson Tuesday night and the very first thing I did was sleep. First on the plane (1 hr the first leg, 2 hrs the second leg) and then 10 more hours at home. My assistant Debbie, who was with me till Saturday, took Sunday-Tuesday off to recoup. Yesterday, I got my little treasures from Brink, thanks to Prima Gems who did the transport for me together with their (considerably larger)...

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What I Have Learned about Paraibas

Posted by Cecile Raley on

This blog entry has been a long time coming - I should have written it over a year ago, when I first started buying Paraibas on my inaugural visit in Tucson.

I have seen and admired Paraiba tourmalines ever since I got into the gem business in 2009. At that point, I knew little about buying and grading gems, but I was already attracted by their neon glow. I bought one single piece to make a tie bar...

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How to Design onto a Basic Pendant Shape

Posted by Yvonne Raley on

This little video clip came about largely by accident.  I just started playing with some of my gems to see if I could fit the right sizes onto my new Art Deco pendant and Debbie started filming and shooting photos.  So I decided to use the video and show you how I decide which gems go where.

As you can see, this pendant is cast in 14 K yellow and not rose gold. According to my latest survey (thank...

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Why Don’t All Gems Come in Any Cut?

Posted by Yvonne Raley on

I got the following question from two customers just this week: can I supply a matched pair of Merelani mint garnets, elongated pear shape.  The answer – and I don’t even have to look – is “no.”  (I actually did find one pair, so I was wrong, but you’ll see the astronomical price tag on my Etsy site!)
So why doesn’t any gem come in any cut? The answer is really simple. Gems are cut to maximize the...

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The Danburites of Morogoro

Posted by Yvonne Raley on

I love unusual gemstones, as you know, and if my gemstone dealer has anything of interest, no matter how tiny the production, he usually shows me first. So you can imagine my surprise when he had me guess what the three teaspoons of clean yellow material were that he pulled out of a little plastic bag a couple of weeks ago. I know Danburite to be clear or faint vanilla color but had never seen...

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