This is the continuation of a story I started writing a week or so ago. It sort of took on a life of its own and became waaaay too long for one post. So…here’s the rest of the story. As you remember, I have quite an affinity for handmade jewelry and I’m sharing some of my favorite pieces with you.
Just to show you what can be done with old jewelry, notice the chain on this bracelet. This was a choker chain that I had several diamonds on. I had designed it and had it made years ago and was tired of it. So, we removed the diamonds, and doubled the chain.
Then I had this little charm that Mom and Pop bought on a trip they took around the world. This blue stone is called ‘LAPIS LAZULI‘. Have you ever heard of it?
(Sorry, it’s the teacher in me…I have to tell you about this stone…)
*****It is mentioned in the Bible, in the book of Exodus. Before Moses went up into Mt Sinai to receive the Ten Commandments, the Lord instructed him to come to the mountain with several leaders and elders. . . . . “9 Moses and Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, and the seventy elders of Israel went up 10 and saw the God of Israel. Under His feet was something like a pavement made of lapis lazuli, as bright blue as the sky. ” Exodus 24:9-10 *****
*****Strangely enough, the stone ‘lapis lazuli‘ was also referred to as a ‘sapphire’ in Biblical times. This is not to be mistaken for the sapphire of our day, which is the corundum, a stone that was not known in ancient times. So remember that when you read the word ‘sapphire’ in the Bible, you are actually reading about ‘lapis lazuli‘.
*****Theophrastos, a Greek scholar, in his book on stones, refers to Lapis Lazuli as ‘blue with gold-white specks.’
*****Sapir (“sapphire” Ex 28:18). In the OT this is referred to among the most precious stones (Job 28:16). Ezekiel sees the firmament as resembling the sapphire and his vision of the Garden of Eden includes the sapir (Ezek 28:13). “You were in Eden, the garden of God; Every precious stone adorned you: ruby, topaz,and emerald, chrysolite, onyx, and jasper, sapphire (lapis lazuli),turquoise and beryl…”
|LAPIS LAZULI Lapis Lazuli is a beautiful, rich ultramarine-blue stone consisting largely of lazurite and speckled with yellow pyrite. Lapis was one of the most sought after and prized stones of ancient times. It was used for jewelry, ornamentation, seals, and amulets. It was also used extensively for inlaying. Egyptian blue paint was made from finely ground lapis. This stone has been found in abundance in archaeological digs of ancient civilizations, including King Tut’s tomb which held many beautiful specimens of lapis jewelry dating to 1350 BC. Mines in Afghanistan have been producing gem lapis lazuli for nearly 5000 years and are still the worlds largest producer of the material. Most scholars agree that lapis lazuli is actually the stone meant for the term “sapphire” in the Bible. Sapphires were not known before the Roman empire and were initially considered to be jacinth. The Elder Pliny (AD 23-69) gives a description of sappir (translated by most as sapphire) as being like the night sky, spangled with stars, and Theophratus (372-287BC) describes “sappir spotted with gold.” These descriptions definitely indicate the lapis lazuli.|
I am so enjoying wearing it! I had it on an old charm bracelet, but for many years it has lain in an old jewelry box. And, to have a precious stone around my wrist that is the same as God had under His feet gives me an incredible feeling of gratitude for the beauty He created in His world.
This is one of my favorite pieces from Hawaii. It is all hand braided and contains beautiful natural pearls and sterling silver pieces. The clasp is a teeny bird on a branch with a birdcage. This is such a beauty!
Can you tell how very tiny the work on the braiding is? (Please ignore the red nail polish)
Next is a fun piece that I bought at one of my all time favorite boutiques in Birmingham, White Flowers. This piece is all sterling silver and handcrafted by an artist the shop represents. I love the hammered heart and the tiny crown sitting atop it. Even the chain is handmade, as well.
And here is merely gathered and strung. Also from Hawaii, these little shells are gathered in a very hard to access area on the island of Maui. These are so beautiful, nothing else is needed. Each shell is different and full of color. It’s true that the Master Designer makes things that are more beautiful than we can even imagine!
Next is a series of bangles that I bought in Maui. The black stones are lava rock from the volcanoes that formed the islands. They are cut into chunks and rounded and polished into these lovely beads. The white are tiny shells with a natural hole formed from the ocean waves, and the green ones are sea glass found on the beach. The bangles are hand hammered and the stones are all found by the artist personally.
And, the final one is a beautiful hand hammered simple cross bangle. The cross is integrated into the design, not just added on. Love this!
And that winds it up for Part 2 of this post. I love this beautiful jewelry. But they are all just things. My worth and value in this world is not tied to these. They are fun to wear and pretty to look at, but not extremely valuable, other than the enjoyment they bring me.
I love jewelry and enjoy wearing it, but it is not my treasure. No, my treasure is my relationshop with my Heavenly Father. My treasure is the knowledge that I will live in Heaven with Him one day. That is the only thing I can leave this world with. Praise the Lord!
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matt. 6:19-21
Love them all, but my absolute favorite is the pearls from Hawaii with the bird and birdcage clasp. So unique!
Coming this way anytime soon? Hope so.
Beautiful – every single treasure. But most beautiful of all is your heart.
So pretty! I love the cross bracelet. I just may have to show it to my hubby who was a silversmith in one of his many careers.
I love that it is not just beautiful, but every thing is also meaningful and full of memories! Love the explanation of the blue stone!
Beautifull Tonja Lu – I like the one with the crown best because after all you are still the queen in my book.
Such a nice article you have shared.I am very glad to find this.