The World's Most Useful
Gem & Jewelry Monthly Newsletter
Written by Carolyn Doyle for customers of
The Dorado Company
and other visitors to the
azgem.com website who subscribe.
Share this newsletter with friends and co-workers by printing or forwarding it to them in its entirety.
Sign up for a free subscription to the AZGem Gems monthly newsletter.
Back issues of the
AZGem Gems newsletter can be accessed by clicking
Usable Gems... and a little opinion.
High Tech Ceramic
High tech ceramic jewelry is relatively new...
High tech ceramic jewelry first came to most people's
attention in wrist watch applications. It is now moving into some other jewelry
We've done a few articles in this newsletter about
alternative jewelry metals. More people are exploring these alternatives
recently, prompted by the current high price for gold.
This month's question falls into that category, and at the
same time illustrates the uncertainty attached to this new jewelry material.
The reader's enquiry says... "I recently saw a
display of zirconia ceramic jewelry (top photo). Is it metal,? Is it plastic? Is it any
As is my custom, I'll give you my short answers first... no,
no, and it depends on what qualities you're looking for in your
Next, let me confess that I know little about this
material, but I have done some research over the past few months as I have
received sales offers from manufacturers, most of whom seem to be in China.
High tech ceramic jewelry can be thought of as a
family of jewelry materials. Zirconia ceramic jewelry is a member of the family.
Other terms for this material are advanced ceramics, technical ceramics, and
probably several other names.
Ceramic is defined in my on-line dictionaries as:
"Any of various hard,
brittle, heat-resistant and corrosion-resistant materials made by shaping and
then firing a nonmetallic mineral, such as clay, at a high temperature."
High tech ceramic jewelry obviously does not fit this
definition at the first reading. I did find a source that states that these
materials are called ceramics because they are non-metallic and transformed by
What makes them desirable for certain jewelry
applications? They are...
- High strength and fracture toughness
- High hardness and wear resistance
- They don't tarnish
- The material can be colored, and the color doesn't fade
That certainly sounds like good jewelry attributes.
There are limitations because of the extreme heat applied
in the manufacturing process. Few natural gems can withstand that amount of heat
The very attributes listed above makes it almost
impossible to set gems into the jewelry after it is manufactured.
Personally, I would sum up a major drawback by saying "beauty is in the
eye of the beholder."
High tech ceramics have many other (and impressively diverse) applications,
- Medical implants and prostheses
ball valve (balls and seats)
impellors, valves and seals
A keyword search using the Google search box below and the keyword phrase high tech ceramic jewelry will
give you more information on this subject.
Gem Industry News...
JTV Settles Labradorite Suit
The Jewelry Television Channel (JTV) has reached a settlement with customers
who sued the on-air jewelry retailer claiming it sold treated gemstones without
JTV sold red, green, and other colors of andesine-labradorite as natural. An
independent gemmogist did what JTV and other industry experts had not been able
to do. He discovered and proved that the material was actually common
labradorite diffused with copper
The process was heretofore unknown and thought to not be possible.
JTV denies any wrongdoing in the case and asserts that "representations
it made about the gemstones were properly based on industry literature,
representations and information from its suppliers, and gemstone laboratory
reports from national accredited laboratories."
Specifics about the settlement were not disclosed
The National Retail Federation is reporting that its 2008 Holiday Consumer Intentions
and Actions Survey found that U.S. consumers plan to spend 1.9% more this
year on holiday shopping than they did last year.
The survey, conducted by BIGresearch, said consumers plan to spend an average
of $832.36, up from last year's $816.69. That percentage is the lowest increase
in planned consumer spending since they began taking the annual survey seven
An ailing economy isn't a deal killer when you offer quality, service, and
low prices on beautiful jewelry and loose gems.
Do you enjoy jewelry and gems?
Do you enjoy talking with friends and co-workers?
Could you use an extra income source?
Take a look at our great
Want to change the e-mail address
at which you receive this newsletter?
Want to (gulp) unsubscribe?
me an email
and let me know
what you want to do.
The AZGem Gems Newsletter is now distributed
through RSS, as well as by e-mail. Use the appropriate button below to
add the azgem.com feed to your RSS service.
Subscribe to my RSS feed
an RSS feed?
AZGem.com is the Web presence of:
The Dorado Company
P.O. Box 8232
Scottsdale, AZ 85252-8232