Classic trends ushered in an intense interest in gemstone jewelry and there seems to be no let up as fall approaches. Sales statistics show that wholesale turquoise jewelry leads all categories of gemstone jewelry shipped to retailers. The affordable price prompts the question-Is it real and how can it be so cheap? The question is legitimate because gem quality turquoise sells for $1,500 per pound and The Allure of Turquoise states gem quality accounts for less than 15% of the world market.
Treated and reconstituted turquoise make up most of the remaining market and this is the turquoise you see so reasonably priced that makes up turquoise jewelry for the fashion industry. Treated turquoise uses soft, chalky turquoise and impregnates it with resin and dye to enhance color and achieve hardness.
Reconstituted turquoise pressure forms soft chunks or more often grinds turquoise and mixes with resins and dye to form the gorgeous beading and pendants found in gemstone fashion jewelry. From small fashion businesses to major department stores, this is usually the turquoise on display that grabs customers’ attention with stunning designs.
Another process dyes howlite, which is an off-white semi precious stone that has natural matrix spidering. Howlite makes beautiful semi precious jewelry in its own right. It is porous and can accept dye while retaining the matrix for a realistic turquoise look. Our feeling is if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it so leave howlite alone and let it make its own gorgeous fashion statement in semi precious jewelry.
Classic fashion trends bring a renewed interest in gemstone jewelry and designers incorporate reconstituted turquoise into fashion creations arranged with other semi precious stones and fashion components like faceted glass and plated metal. The reconstituted turquoise bracelet shown alternates with faceted glass beads.
Reconstituted turquoise creates striking contrast with other semi precious stones such as picture jasper. Picture jasper generally has a beige color, which is a wonderful neutral that showcases the turquoise as in the semi precious necklace set shown. A variety of semi precious stones mixed with turquoise make dramatic changes in a look and offer color to go with nearly anything in the shop.
But this season’s favorite seems to be turquoise and coral combinations-especially good with red so important in the season’s fashion palette. Dye usually also enhances the coral to achieve the rich red color whereas the natural color is often a far less appealing grey. Without the enhancements such gorgeous looks of turquoise and coral jewelry would not be available at such affordable prices.
So when customers ask if t is real, you can tell them yes and explain how it is so affordable. They will appreciate your honesty and you will gain their trust.