Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Technical Problems

Hello! Touchstone is having some troubles with the blog and you may find that some articles do not have pictures. We are working on that and we hope to fix the problem by the end of the month! Thank you.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Did You Know?



Did you know the origin of the word fluorite came from Fluere? Fluere is the Latin verb for to flow. Ancient Romans believed that if you drank alcoholic beverages in a drinking vessel made from fluorite it would prevent drunkenness. Powdered fluorite in water was used to treat kidney disease in the 18th century. This is believed to be derived from the Roman myth! The ancient Egyptians used fluorite to carve statues and scarabs while the Chinese have also used it in carvings for over 300 years.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Compelling Coprolite: Prehistoric Feces!

Home Décor Factors and Suggestions: Here at Touchstone Coprolite is one of our popular fossils and has an interesting background story! These are the perfect first fossil for someone who is starting a collection! They are the intriguing little knick-knacks that you can place anywhere!


Home Décor Featuring a Fascinating Story

Legend and Lore: Coprolites are classified as trace fossils. Coprolite was first known as fossil fir cones and bezoar stones. Today, these fossils serve a valuable purpose in paleontology! Coprolites provide direct evidence of the predation and diet of extinct organisms.

Fossil Formation: These knick-knacks were formed like any other fossil! A majority of the coprolite’s composition has been replaced by mineral deposits such as silicates and calcium carbonates.

Revealed by Man: The initial discovery of coprolites was made after fossil hunter, Mary Anning had noticed that the “bezoar stones” were often found in the abdominal region of ichthyosaur skeletons (Jurassic reptilians). The observations made by Anning led geologist William Buckland to propose that the stones were fossilized feces and named them coprolites.

Touchstone Gallery Offers a Wide Variety of Nature’s Art Etched in Stone

We invite you to view our current offerings of coprolite 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, July 8, 2015

Turquoise: One of July’s Brilliant Birthstones

Turquoise in Jewelry- Turquoise has been valued by many for centuries and is a beautiful stone that is very frequently used in jewelry. Turquoise jewelry is exquisite for many reasons, but mostly because of its deep and rich color. Turquoise is unparalleled by any other color.



Touchstone Gallery offers turquoise necklaces, earrings, and bracelets, perfect for a July baby, seeing that it is one of the birthstones for that month. Turquoise would also look lovely on someone with blue eyes, really making the color of their eyes pop.


Legend and Lore- Turquoise was valued highly by the Aztecs, Ancient Egyptians, and many other cultures. The Aztecs inlaid turquoise with gold, quartz, malachite, coral, shells, and other minerals and gems. Other tribes value turquoise as highly as the Aztecs, including the Navajo, Apache, and Pueblo peoples. Many cultures see turquoise as a bringer of good fortune and in Persia, turquoise was the national stone for a millennium.

Science of Mineral Formation- Turquoise is a secondary mineral, meaning it is produced by the altering of an existing mineral, and in the case of turquoise, that mineral is copper ore. In the United States, turquoise is often formed in veins and comes out in nuggets that are small sized. Turquoise has no definite external shape, so each piece of turquoise has its own unique shape and character.

Revealed by Man- Most commonly, turquoise occurs in Iran, Egypt, and the southwestern United States. Most all of the turquoise at Touchstone Gallery is from the southwest United States, specifically from Arizona, New Mexico, Nevada, and Colorado.

Revealed by M Touchstone Gallery Offers a Wide Variety of Nature’s Art Etched in Stone
We invite you to view our current offerings of vertebrate 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, July 1, 2015

Azurite: A True Blue Mineral

Décor Suggestions and Factors: Azurite is a beautiful deep, royal blue mineral! Azurite was used for pigments of paint and is now popularly created into beads for jewelry design as well as home décor.  The shade of blue in azurite complements many other colors, making the mineral a perfect home décor piece! 



Pictured above is azurite in its natural form. This home décor piece would look well with grey colored walls. Just imagine this azurite décor as a centerpiece for your wooden coffee table. Gorgeous! The necklace pictured below is granite with azurite inclusions. The blue accents to this necklace are sure to strike up a conversation!


Home Décor Featuring a Fascinating Story



Legend and Lore: For thousands of years azurite was used as ornamental use. Azurite is a beautiful blue gem that was used as pigments and eyeshadows for many people in the Middle Ages and during the times of the Renaissance. The name of azurite comes from many dirivitive of words. The Persian word, lazward and the Arabic word, azul both mean blue.


Mineral Formation: Azurite commonly occurs with Malachite, chrysocolla or turquoise. This blue gem is one of the two basic copper carbonate minerals (the other being malachite) and is a 3.5 to 4 on the Mohs scale of hardness.

Revealed by Man: Notable localities of this mineral are Namibia, Germany, Morocco, Germany and Australia.  Large, blue crystals are mined in Namibia and sometimes large crystals can also be found in Morocco.


Touchstone Gallery Offers a Wide Variety of Nature’s Art Etched in Stone

We invite you to view our current offerings of azurite 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.