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Amber – A drop of Honey

  • 2 min read

Amber – A drop of Honey

Since 9,500 BC this organic gemstone has been one of the most popular and appreciated stones of the day. Originating purely from nature, this organic gemstone begins its journey when soft and sticky tree resin seeps down from (now extinct) trees. Over time, the resin undergoes changes in composition and chemistry. It hardens over millions of years of being subjected to heat and pressure, the once honey-yellow liquid becomes that precious stone that we call “Amber”.

On rare occasion, as this sticky resin travels down the tree it encases anything in its path, subsequently entombing insects, such as butterflies, spiders and ants, or plant material such as leaves or delicate flowers. Not only are these pieces spectacular to behold (a poised fly frozen in time), but they also offer a rare snapshot into prehistoric life. A piece could date as far back as 320 million years ago! With most Amber dating back 50 million years ago.

Amber comes in a variety of colours. The best known being the characteristic rich and deep honey colour, which perfectly complements an autumnal wardrobe. However, on rare occasion Amber can be an intense cherry red, a lush forest green or a milky moonlight blue. At Coleman Douglas Pearl’s we mainly incorporate honey coloured, dark cherry red and stone coloured amber into our designs. This Amber comes from the Baltic Sea, found as rough pebbles washed up on the shore. On special request, we work with green amber, a rare stone that comes from Mexico. Amber is lighter than seawater, so as the petrified wood disintegrates underwater the amber floats to the surface of the sea, and is carried to seashore.

This beautiful, yet varied organic gemstone is incredibly soft (supposedly, if you warm amber a pleasant smell should emanate from it). Therefore, in order to protect this precious stone we suggest you house your amber jewellery in a silk pouch when you are not wearing it. This avoids scratches, protecting your design for your own enjoyment and the next generations.

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