Postcards from Tucson

EditorsFeb 01, 2018

Postcards from Tucson

Check out the best Instagrams posted so far from the gem shows.

As the jewelry industry decamps to Tucson, Arizona for the gem shows, here are some of the best images they’re sharing via Instagram.

It’s that time of year when the jewelry industry migrates south to Tucson, Arizona for a few margaritas and a whole lot of gem sourcing.

Luckily, if you happen to be holding down the fort elsewhere, Instagram lends the perfect postcard-worthy views into all the gem show action.

From opals to garnets to geodes so large it will cost a fortune just to ship them home, here are what some of our favorite designers and gem dealers are eyeing in Arizona.

Designer Ray Griffiths spotted this natural two-tone cushion-cut sapphire at The Arizona Riverpark Inn. It features a rare mix of color, deep blue and light greenish-yellow.

Designer Alexis Kletjian has temporarily closed her new Pennsylvania store to stock up on gems in Tucson for her custom pieces. She’s been posting pictures of everything from lapis lazuli to rough sapphires, as well as geodes bigger than the average human, like the one above.

A post shared by Dave Bindra (@gemfluencer) on Jan 30, 2018 at 6:40am PST

David Bindra of B & B Gems, who can be found on Instagram as @gemfluencer, never disappoints with his gemstone posts, which typically color coordinate with his sneakers. Currently exhibiting at the AGTA GemFair, he teased some of what he has for sale in the above video.

Also at AGTA is Colorline, a company that specializies in sapphires and rubies. This 25.61-carat royal blue, emerald-cut Ceylon sapphire is the most extraordinary stone I’ve seen grammed from the gem shows so far.

Are blue gemstones trending? It may be too early to tell, but Kimberly Collins Colored Gems has a super-pretty assortment of blue zircon at her AGTA booth.

Continuing with the blue theme, AGTA posted an image to its Instagram account of tanzanite slices from Krishaili Gems. The picture exemplifies the natural variation of the stone’s color, which can range from a light blue to a deep violet with many shades in between.

Katherine Jetter has been posting my favorite assortment of images from the gem shows. Here, she displays something you don’t see every day—a Paraiba tourmaline carved in the shape of a skull.

Sunny Bond, one half of the duo behind antique jewelry seller Fox & Bond, shared a video of these luscious opals on her Instagram account. Bond also creates custom jewelry for her private clientele, a few of whom we expect will be decked out in opals in the near future.

It’s not
always easy to get the scoop on the gemstones designers are feeling in Arizona, as they attempt to make discreet purchases while bumping into about 1,000 people they know. But Irene Neuwirth had no qualms about sharing these opal beads on her account, noting that she “took them all.”

Besides blue gems and opals, other stones have had shining Instagram moments. Diamond Doodles highlighted this juicy rhodochrosite from dealer Beija Flor at AGTA. 

Back at the Pueblo Gem and Mineral Show at The Arizona Riverpark Inn, @s_m_crystals showcased this rough ruby in zoisite from Longido, Tanzania. It’s available from New Era Gems.

A post shared by Alexey B (@russiandemantoid) on Jan 27, 2018 at 2:42pm PST

From dealer Russian Demantoid comes this incredible rough Russian emerald specimen, shown at The Arizona Riverpark Inn.

This blog wouldn’t be complete without a shout out to spinel, which is our Senior Editor and resident gemstone expert Brecken Branstator’s favorite gemstone. Currently on the ground in Tucson, Brecken spotted these pink and red spinels at Kimberly Collins Colored Gems.

Tucson isn’t just for gem lovers; it’s also a destination for diamonds, as demonstrated by this exquisitely unique fancy-shaped pair that designer Doryn Wallach found at AGTA. This editor, for one, can’t wait to see what she makes of them.

Lastly, a trip to Tucson requires a shot or two of some larger-than-life quartz. This one was taken by @hoodxhippie, a cool Mississippi-based company that creates, among other things, pendants and cell phone cases from orgonite, a substance made of resin, metals and quartz.
Ashley Davisis the senior editor, fashion at National Jeweler, covering all things related to design, style and trends.

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