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) inventory.
Tucson was amazing this year. As many of you know, I stumbled upon a couple of dozen of boxes of Demantoid at Dudley's booth the first day, and I sold out three days in a row. Spurred by the interest, I also bought a larger piece, .77 cts, a couple of larger pairs and a larger 5mm round from a Russian seller at the GJX. They come from the Ural mountains. Not sure I'll share the .77 piece - it's apple green, absolutely perfect in color, horsetail inclusions and everything. But the 5mm is on Etsy, and some 3.2 and 4mm pieces are available if there's interest. Dudley also had more spinel melee, some more reddish ones, of which I still have some 3mm and 4mm pieces - nice open color, very bright. He backfilled with a little of the older cobalt spinel material, and he explained to us why the stuff is so rare at this point. He also backfilled on kornerupine, which I am selling out of at a rapid pace. In general, some of the new stuff has been flying out the door this week, which made me rather happy. Oh and there's a little bit more of the Kenyan tsavorite, also old stock.
A new find - not yet released on my website, is what Dudley called "Chrome-Beryl" from Pakistan. A light blue-green color, chrome beryl is not exactly aquamarine and not exactly green beryl. It has the chromium content of beryl, ruling it out as an aqua, but it is too blue to be a beryl color. Some of the pieces are bi-color. Dudley bought out the entire find, and I grabbed a bunch.
Speaking of beryl, I spoke at length to Monte from Equatorian Imports, who specializes in red beryl. Below is a little interview with him, explaining why they use the clarity enhancement process on most of their stones. He convinced me to try working with some melee and so I've listed them on Etsy. The color is gorgeous - and since there is no more mining in the area, there's not likely to be much once he is sold out.
While I was talking to Monte, I ran into Richard Wise who has just come out with a new Edition of his book, Secrets of the Gemstone Trade. I bought a copy and interviewed him on the new book to share with you.
I also got some more pyrope garnet from Arizona, I have 4.5mm pairs still available and 3.5mm rounds. And I saw some gorgeous Nigerian Indicolite - one princess cut pair is on Etsy already, another longer pair is coming up. There is a bit more Cambodian Zircon available (I suggest the pair shapes in my shop which need better photos if I have time), mostly rounds. And I have some additional tourmaline. There were no new shipments of the lagoon color, at least not for now. I saw a seller at GJX who had it but he charged more than I charge on resale, so there was no point in getting any.
I bought some more paraiba melee, several more pairs in the 2.5-3mm range. And a larger parcel of 2mm that can be used for melee. I have another cabochon coming up as well. Generally I found the paraiba to be a bit slim pickings. Same with tourmaline in general. I bought and sold two pairs of elongated pear shapes, and I have one more that's indicolite color (this will be on the more expensive side I'm afraid).
From a Thai seller that I've worked with a few times, I got nice sapphire melee (listed), ruby 3mm (sold), lavender sapphire melee (2mm, 3mm), a ruby marquis and some pear shapes (coming up). The marquis fits the Cleo ring. I also got one slightly bigger ruby. I HAD a matched pair but one fell under the heater during the photo session and we are still looking for it. Bummer because that was an amazing pair. (Shortly before I moved I found a ruby underneath my deep freezer that had been there for about 2 years, so you never know when that turns up).
I found "my" benitoite dealer at the Inn Suites - he sold me those ombre layouts before. I have more ombres available - I'd love to do one in my new five stone hexagon pendant. And I have 1.5mm, 1.8-1.9mm and 2mm melee.
On the more unusual side, I brought back a twin star sapphire, a reddish orange kyanite, a Vesuvianite, a little bit of Triplite, Mexican Danburite (white), a dumortierite cabochon (I can barely spell that!), and next week I am getting another shipment from Dudley!
Double Star Sapphire, Ceylon
Dumortierit in Quartz from Brazil
In sadder news, there will be no hauyne in the near future. As I shared on FB already, there was an accident on the mining site in Germany (a small field near Idar Oberstein, which is the only place in the world where it has ever been found), and since then the owners of the property have not let anyone on to the site. My German seller, Juergen, who lives nearby, hopes to change that in the near future but right now it is uncertain what will happen. Juergen had completely sold out in Hong Kong and the Israeli dealers from whom I got a big parcel last year didn't come to the show. They specialize in Vietnamese spinel and there was not enough material this year to feature it.
Dudley said he might have a little more hauyne and he promised me to look next month when he gets home. Juergen said he had some more rough and he would email me when it was worked up. If either of these come through, I will let you all know.
All in all though, aside from the lost (and found) cell phone charger, the lost (and found) rental car key that turned up in my pocketbook the day after we had left the rental in the parking lot of El Churro's and taken an Uber back, a delayed arrival flight, a hotel booking confusion that forced us to drastically downsize for a night (I'd rather skip the details), and a forgotten passport coupled with a nearly missed flight, the trip went perfectly smoothly. And it was totally worth it all, too!