Well this week has been crazy. We have had some insane weather here in the Pacific Northwest, including snow, rain (enough for Seattle schools to close, if you can imagine that amount of rain), 70+mph winds, freezing fog, and then record high temperatures. Yes, it was in the 50s this week, which is downright balmy for this far north at this time of year.
Now, why would I talk about the weather, you might ask? Well, on November 17th, we had the above mentioned nasty wind storm, which knocked power out all over Spokane…and damaged part of the roof at the USPS sorting warehouse. Which, when the second wind storm hit, weakened the roof further to the point that it had to be evacuated. This happened just as a 3.62ct Mahenge spinel arrived in the ill-fated sorting facility in Spokane from Mayer & Watt. (If you don’t know Mayer & Watt, you should.) The gemstone that I was planning on evaluating and writing today’s post about. So that post will have to wait for next week. But a neon “original find” hot pink/red Mahenge should make for a good Christmas week post, so I’ll just have to let it go until next week.
Now, I’ve been working on some custom designs for some of my favorite clients, as well as looking at new stones for new clients, and really trying to get all of the stock collection up and running. One thing I’ve recently started doing is really going out and searching for stones, personal gemstone shopping, if you will. And I’ve been lucky enough to get in contact with the right people, at the right time, and find some extraordinary stones that I really thought we would not be able to find.
For instance, and if you follow me on Instagram, you’ve seen this stone, but I had a client come to me looking for her engagement ring stone. She wanted a lavender, leaning blue, oval sapphire that was at least 9mm wide on the width, precision cut. Which, if you’ve thought about it, translates to about 5-8 carats, depending on cut. So, as soon as I saw her wish list, I said, “Hey, this is going to be incredibly hard to find. I would start thinking about alternatives or concessions you feel comfortable making.” So she did, and said that she thought a lighter pink or even a white sapphire might be acceptable, adding round to her list of acceptable shapes. And I started keeping an eye out for those. Which is when I found Mayer & Watt.
Image is property of Mayer & Watt.
Geoffrey Watt participates in a gemstone appreciation group on Facebook, One World Gemstone, and when he posted an image, I went and looked at his company’s FB page. There was a white sapphire that was round, which fit my client’s new criteria list. So I reached out and asked about the round white sapphire, and while Geoffrey and I were talking about it, I mentioned originally looking for a lavender. To which Geoffrey said, “You mean like this one?”
Image is property of Mayer & Watt.
Insert my heart popping out of my chest.
At 5.97cts, 10.7×9.2×7.5 it was exactly what we had been looking for. I was so excited that not only was this stone in existence (I truly thought that it wouldn’t exist, or at least, that we wouldn’t find it) that it was within reach, and it took me about two hours to compose the email to the client with the details because I was so excited and in shock.
After jumping through a whole bunch of hoops, and Geoffrey making every attempt to accommodate our needs, it was hers.
Since then, she actually sent it to Jerry Newman for a recut, to clean up the symmetry a bit since it would be her engagement ring stone. Jerry did an amazing job, managing to only lose 8.3% loss, from 5.99 ct to 5.49 ct. The depth was originally 7.43 mm and is now 6.9, keeping the original face up dimensions at 10.7 x 9.2mm.
Not to be overly gushing, but when I originally got this client request, I was so worried that I wouldn’t be able to come through for her. And it’s been through a couple of incredible colleagues in the gem trade that I was able to make a client’s engagement ring dreams come true.
It doesn’t get much better than that.
In the event that you see something in Mayer & Watt’s inventory that sparks your interest, feel free to request information through our contact page. Please keep in mind that Mayer & Watt are exclusively wholesalers, so they will not respond to your requests directly.
Before I get to the topic for today, I wanted to bring up the actual inspiration behind last week’s gallery post, since it was just completed by my co-collaborator, David Klass. The client had come to be a few months ago about something completely unrelated, and we kept talking about her various other projects. Then we started talking about Paraiba Tourmalines and I’ve been with her every step of the way since then, from consulting on the center stone, to figuring out melee proportions for the various halo sizes, and finally designing and tweaking the gallery. Because this Paraiba tourmaline ring was a once in a lifetime project for her, it was going to have to be incredibly special, classic with clean lines, and a lot of curves. As with many of my projects, the gallery design was in part inspired by my time making pastry and the many hours I have spent practicing piping designs for petit fours.
K, I hope you love it! I think we did a fantastic job and I hope you enjoy it for years to come!
Galleries are so important to making a custom piece super special!
Now, for the topic at hand. I received what I was told was a “pad-like pink-peach” sapphire with “minimal brown”. Now, armed with that information, I will let the pictures do the talking. Which means this will be a very picture heavy post.
With a smaller light brown with peach modifier hessonite garnet.
14kt yellow gold chain
So. The last picture in the gem box is what I saw when I opened the package. It was different enough that I was taken aback – wasn’t this supposed to be a pink-peach sapphire? Did I get the wrong stone? So I took it all over my house, including outside where it turns a champagne/gold in the natural lighting, and inside, in a peach room where it looks peachy brown, and in a pink room where it looks more pink-peach.
Unfortunately the photos aren’t exactly accurate – they are better than what I actually see with my eyes. The champagne gold is more yellow than it comes out in the pics, and the peach-pink is actually less peach-pink and more brown. When I cup my hand around it in diffused daylight with an incandescent light bulb facing it, it looks more peach, but my client was looking for something that is actually a peach-pink with minimal brown. I was prepared for the stone to look less saturated than it looks in pictures, but not brown and certainly not yellow! In daylight, you can see in a couple of the pics that it looks almost the exact same color as the yellow gold ring setting in the picture next to it.
There is a lot of value in being honest in your listings when you are selling gemstones. I don’t think that this vendor intended to be dishonest, and I think that this buyer, my client, probably had expectations for this stone that couldn’t be met without the vendor knowing just how extensive the client’s knowledge and buying experience is.
So, just in case anyone wonders why I don’t use a lot of colorful descriptive terms in my gemstone listings, or get overly flowery or enthusiastic, this is why. I don’t want to elevate customer expectations to the stone being things it isn’t. I try to be painfully honest in my listings, then someone will be delighted when they open it, it’s better than they were expecting.
In other news, I have a whole bunch of prototypes that will be finishing up in the next week or two, including a necklace, which I am over the moon and totally thrilled for.
It’s about to get really exciting over here!