Friday, March 27, 2015

Did You Know?


Did you know that chrysocolla was first called its name by the Greek philosopher and botanist Theophrastus. The name chrysocolla was derived from the Greek words for gold and glue, hinting to the fact that it was used as an ingredient in solder. Solder was used to weld gold pieces together. This beautiful blue gem almost has a celestial touch to it. This stone is like a view of Earth from above!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Peruvian Opal: Picture View of the Andes Mountain Rivers

Peruvian Opal in Jewelry: The Peruvian Opal is designed into elegant and mesmerizing jewelry pieces. The Peruvian Opal can be very translucent similar to the blue of the Caribbean Sea or scenic similar to the river banks of the Andes Mountains. Depending on how the stone is cut it can be clear, scenic or dendritic with black fern like inclusions.


The beautiful jewelry pieces above are elegant and intriguing all at the same time! The pendant on the left pictures a Peruvian opal blending with white and blue topaz. These gems compliment the opal and its inclusions nicely! The necklace on the right is the perfect addition to a white dress adding some complimenting colors that really pop!


Legend and Lore: It is said that the Incas first used this mineral. This mineral was believed to bring luck to many and others believed that this gem physically helps heal fatigue. This mineral is now the national gem of Peru. This gem really does show the rivers of the Andes Mountains! The sedimentary inclusions make the gem appear as the brown is the sandy river bank and the blue opal is the blue of the water runoff from the mountain.

Formation of Mineral: This type of opal forms in no particular crystalline structure like other type of opals do. This type of opal on the other hand forms in a sedimentary rock and sometimes builds layers with inclusions covering the blue mineral.

Revealed by Man: This unique blue gem is rare opal and can be found in the Andes Mountains near San Patricio, Peru. Peruvian opal is also mined in Ica, Peru and bought by jewelers to design beautiful and mesmerizing jewelry pieces.

Touchstone Gallery Offers a Wide Variety of Nature’s Art Etched in Stone
We invite you to view our current offerings of Peruvian opal and many other fascinating natural art pieces in our Touchstone Galleries in Santa Fe (127 W. San Francisco St.), Scottsdale (4168 N. Marshall Way), Sedona (320 N. State Route 89A) and Taos (110 S. Plaza), or online at www.touchstonegalleries.com.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Diplodocus: An Intriguing Herbivore!

Home Décor Factors and Suggestions: These diplodocus fossils Touchstone Gallery has to offer are handsome home décor! These fossils really do tell a unique story and they once upon a time used to be one of the largest and longest herbivore creatures.


Why not display an intriguing fossil piece on the desk of your home office? The fossils’ deep color is what makes this an interesting home décor piece; the deep brown contrasts several colors nicely!

Home Décor Featuring a Fascinating Story

Legend and Lore: Diplodocus was, for many years, considered to be the longest dinosaur! These Jurassic creatures had a long neck and also swung around a large pointed tail. Scientists are still unsure whether this tail was used for defense, mating calls or even to balance its long neck. These herbivores could not raise its head higher than 17 feet and survived off of low lying vegetation; such as conifers, moss and ferns.


Fossil Formation: Diplodocus is one of the best known dinosaurs and can be easily identified in fossils. This diplodocus is classified in the sauropod family and lived in the late Jurassic Period, about 155 million to 145 million years ago. These large dinosaurs primarily roamed western North America and currently in western North America is where many of these fossils are found.


Revealed by Man: The first fossil of this creature was discovered near Cañon City, Colorado. Earl Douglass and Samuel W. Williston discovered the sediments in 1877 and the fossil was later named the next year. A number of diplodocus fossils have been found in the Rocky Mountain region of Colorado, Montana, Utah and Wyoming.


Touchstone Gallery Offers a Wide Variety of Nature’s Art Etched in Stone
We invite you to view our current offerings of diplodocus fossils and many other fascinating natural art pieces in our Touchstone Galleries in Santa Fe (127 W. San Francisco St.), Scottsdale (4168 N. Marshall Way), Sedona (320 N. State Route 89A) and Taos (110 S. Plaza), or online at www.touchstonegalleries.com.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

March: Alluring Aquamarine

Aquamarine in Jewelry- Aquamarine’s soft and brilliant blue color makes it a gorgeous stone to use in jewelry. Touchstone Gallery offers aquamarine necklaces, earrings, and pendants. Often set in sterling silver, aquamarine jewelry is subtle, but it also makes a bold statement. Touchstone Gallery also offers a variety of different shaped stones from rough aquamarine to smooth or polished aquamarine. Touchstone Gallery is sure to have an aquamarine piece that will suit your liking.


 Legend and Lore- Many believe the blue color of aquamarine is reminiscent of the ocean. The ancient Greeks thought that aquamarine could protect sailors from the unpredictable seas. The Greeks were not the only ones who had interesting beliefs about aquamarine, though. In Thailand, it was thought that aquamarine, if worn, would prevent people from becoming seasick as well as protect them from drowning. These interesting myths just make aquamarine that much more interesting.


Science of Aquamarine Formation- Aquamarine is formed in volcanic rocks. After the volcanic rocks cooled, gemstones, including aquamarine, crystalize out of hot fluids. Large crystals are formed when cooling takes place over a long period of time. Additionally, over the past million years or so, erosion and weathering has released many of these beautiful blue gems from the volcanic rock, allowing the occasional lucky person to find a gem floating in a stream or on the beach.


Revealed by Man- Many gems including aquamarine are mined by men. Aquamarine is most often found in Russia, Brazil, the United States, Africa, Pakistan, and Siberia. Aquamarine is carefully mined and extracted from the ground. Then it is polished into the gemstone we know and love, and finally it is made into jewelry or put on display in places such as Touchstone Gallery.

Touchstone Gallery Offers a Wide Variety of Nature’s Art Etched in Stone
We invite you to view our current offerings of aquamarine and many other fascinating natural art pieces in our Touchstone Galleries in Santa Fe (127 W. San Francisco St.), Scottsdale (4168 N. Marshall Way), Sedona (320 N. State Route 89A) and Taos (110 S. Plaza), or online at  
www.touchstonegalleries.com. 

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Happy Trails: Volume 9 (January 2015- March 2015)

The Sedona gallery has been quite excited for the past few months to say goodbye to some of the gallery's favorite pieces. Sedona's spectacular, gigantic amethyst and handsome Woolly mammoth tusk are now beautifully decorating their new-found homes. 


The amethyst piece, pictured above was the first to be told, "happy trails!" This glamorous multi-mega amethyst is from Uruguay and if you have ever visited the Sedona gallery, this large amethyst was the first mineral to be seen, as it graced the doorway. Now, the amethyst geode is greeting guests from afar in its new home in Texas. Private collectors just could not believe it when they first approached this fascinating mineral, in their many years of travel, this couple had never seen such a unique and incredible specimen. After contemplating about the piece, this happy couple finally agreed that they wanted this captivating geode for their very own! Touchstone gallery says farewell and happy trails to this huge and glamorous amethyst. 


More recently, this month, the Sedona gallery said its goodbyes to an astounding Woolly mammoth tusk. Heather Hakola, the gallery manager of Sedona describes the tusk as, "not the longest tusk I had ever seen, nor the last, but let me tell you, it was just the perfect size to display on a mantle and had a color gradation from one end to the other that put many fine Woolly mammoth tusks I had viewed in museums to shame. Just look at the preservation and the detail of the unique grain and you will see why, this mammoth tusk's new owner will be a happy one for many years to come." This remarkable and intriguing tusk has now been decorated into its new home in Missouri. A goodbye and a happy trail to a favorite Woolly mammoth tusk. 

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Did You Know?


Hemimorphite is a type of sorosilicate mineral that has been historically mined from parts of zinc and lead ores. Historically, it was thought that hemimorphite and calamine was the same mineral. Recently, this mineral was declared a different mineral and was renamed for the crystal structure it produces and is the rarer mineral of the two. A notable place that hemimorphite is mined is along the borders of Belgium-Germany. This captivating mineral is said to bring luck! What an extravagant mineral!