Gemstones

#idazzletravels: Kenya and Tanzania Part Two: The Mines

As I described in Part One, I’m obsessed with the gems I find in East Africa, both mineral and of the human variety. But I’m not gonna lie. Seeing the gem mines is a huge reason that I travel to East Africa. Who knew that I’d tolerate cargo pants and snarled hair and red dirt [...]

#idazzletravels: Kenya and Tanzania Part One: The Gems

I find myself saying “Asante” to people instead of thank you, and, like a narcoleptic, fall asleep mid-sentence after 8pm. I must be home from Africa.
I just returned from my 6th trip–in about 30 months–to Kenya and Tanzania. After so many trips…

#idazzletravels: Come See Me at the Initiatives in Art and Culture Gold Conference!

This has been an exciting (and poignant) year so far. There is a lot going on in the jewelry world, and I’m trying to participate where I can. In addition to writing about interesting designers and traveling to trade shows to see the latest collections…

Larger than Life: A Tribute to Gichuchu Okeno

I am numb. Stunned. Two weeks ago today I was FaceTiming with Gichuchu Okeno, gem dealer, mine owner, father, husband, and friend. And today he is gone. I’ll never hear his laugh again. It’s hard to reduce a life down to its essence, to mere words. Okeno…

#idazzletravels: AGTA GemFair Wrap Up of Gemstone Trends

It is a good thing it’s sunny in Seattle today (yes, that actually happens about 12 days a year), or my post-Tucson funk would be so much worse. After five days of non-stop gem overload in the sunny Sagauro-land of Tucson, it’s hard enough to adjust my eyes…

Happy New Year!

I received this journal as a gift in 2013 and started using in early in 2014. It’s nearly full, the last few pages filling up as the year winds down. There are entries early on that are nearly illegible, as I scribbled my thoughts while bouncing along the red dirt roads in East Africa. Some missives were scripted on airplanes…

To Africa, With Love

I’m not sure anything or anyone can fully prepare a westerner for a trip to Africa. I went in to this adventure thinking I knew what to expect. And then I arrived. East Africa is a land of contrasts and contradictions. There is no infrastructure. I had expectations of spotty wi-fi, iffy cell coverage. We [...]

Handmade Gemstone Bead Jewelry from icandijewelry.com

I enjoy finding handmade jewelry made by artisans. I regularly mine Etsy.com for fresh designers to include in my posts. It’s important to support the artists out there…

How to Buy a Colored Gemstone

This will give you some essentials you need to know before you splurge on a colored gemstone piece of jewelry. All the variables mean that a colored stone purchase…