The Tucson Gem Show
The legendary annual gem show in Tucson, Arizona, is arguably the largest and most important colored gemstone event in the world. It’s all here—natural colored gemstones, diamonds, cultured pearls, designer and estate jewelry, crystals and fossils. When a new gemstone is discovered (such as tsavorite in the 1970s), you’ll see it first in Tucson; if a deposit is found in a new place (such as sapphire in Madagascar), you’ll see it first in Tucson; if a gemstone is discovered in a new color (such as the neon shades of Paraiba tourmaline or luscious shades of “Mandarin” garnet), you’ll see it first in Tucson! But you’ll also find every new synthetic and every new treatment in Tucson, often without disclosure. Old and new, good or bad, hot or not, it’s in Tucson. But all of this just adds to the excitement and the thrill of the hunt.
Gem Identification—Parts One and Two
(Part one is not a prerequisite for part two.)
Instructor: Antoinette Matlins, GemStone Press
These nontechnical, half-day workshops demonstrate how to use simple, portable instruments to quickly and easily identify colored gemstones typically seen in the jewelry market, detect treatments and spot many fakes and synthetics. Techniques to screen for HPHT-treated diamonds and surface-coated diamonds and gemstones are also covered. Even gemologists can benefit from time-saving tips. Increase confidence when buying away from your store, office or in the field.
Easy Gem Identification: Part One
Friday, February 6, 2009, 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.
Parcels of gemstones and diamonds often contain imitations, synthetics and improperly identified gemstones (such as red spinel being identified as ruby). But most gemstones can be identified easily, and separated from look-alikes, if you know how. This hands-on, nontechnical seminar will provide beginners with skills to identify many gemstones and spot fakes that commonly appear in antique and estate pieces. Gems, jewelry and instruments will be provided for use during the workshop. No gemology, science or technical aptitude needed. This seminar is for beginners but also offers a good brush-up on practical techniques for advanced students and professionals.
Easy Gem Identification: Part Two
Saturday, February 7, 2009, 1:00 p.m.–4:00 p.m.
A beautiful piece of jewelry or a parcel of gemstones can provide a clever guise in which to pass off fakes, synthetics and imitations as “important gemstones.” No one wants to inadvertently buy a synthetic, imitation or common gemstone incorrectly identified as something more valuable. At the same time, some of the rarest and most valuable gems are discovered in old pieces, sometimes overlooked or mistakenly sold as synthetics because they look “too good to be true”! Knowing one from the other is often easy to determine, but many people are intimidated by scientific terms and sophisticated sounding instruments. Learn how easy it is to use some of the most important gem identification tools, including the refractometer, and how useful they can be in helping you avoid costly mistakes or discover valuable treasures. Gems, jewelry and instruments will be provided for use during the workshop. Completion of part one is helpful but not essential. No gemology, science or technical aptitude needed.