September Birthstone: Sapphire

A new month is upon us, and with it brings a new birthstone to explore. (Click here if you missed my article about peridot last month.) Though traditionally people think of sapphires being blue, the fact is that they come in every color but red. Why not red? I learned that a ruby is technically a blue sapphire. What?! They are both made of the corundum mineral, but when it’s true red, it’s a ruby. There seems to be a blurry line between sapphires that are pinkish-red or reddish-orange and a ruby, so be aware. I’m going to have to investigate this more.

But on to the meaning of sapphires. Known as a symbol of faith, goodness, wisdom and purity, sapphires also provide protection of loved ones and from evil. Here are some of the other qualities associated with sapphires:

-mental clarity
-fulfillment of dreams
-aid in meditation

Given that sapphires come in so many colors, I’m including some non-blue pieces that really pique my interest.

Jemma Wynne bangle with geometric purple sapphires

jemma wynne closed bangle with geometric purple sapphires
Clare Ullman lariat from Manika Jewelry

Clare Ullman Lariat
Finn blue sapphire thread earrings

finn blue sapphire thread earrings
Ileana Makri “wisdom eye” ring

ileana makri diamond, sapphire & white gold wisdom eye ring
Rina Limor wavy sapphire drop earrings

rina limor wavy sapphire drop earrings
Armenta sapphire and diamond open cluster ring

armenta old world open clster diamond & sapphire ring
Ela Rae Noa necklace

ela rae noa necklace
Deanna Hamro sapphire, boulder opal and diamond cuff

deanna hamro sapphire slice and boulder opal cuff with diamonds
Ileana Makri sapphire deco column ring

ileana makri deco coumn ring
And not to ignore the birthday boys out there….

Todd Reed sterling belt buckle with sapphire cabochons

todd reed sterling belt buckle with sapphire cabochons
Stephen Webster sterling silver and sapphire cufflinks

stephen webster sterling silver blue sapphire cuff links
So how many of you reading this have September birthdays? I hope you have a wonderful celebration and treat yourself to a new sapphire piece of jewelry!

Feather Jewelry

I don’t quite know what’s going on with me, but I’ve got feathers on the brain. I see them on the ground, I’ve had more than one dream that I have a feather tattoo, and no lie, but as I was getting ready for work in the bathroom the other morning, a teeny, tiny feather drifted down right in front of my face. Where did THAT come from?! I also was lunching with a friend a couple weeks ago and she gave me a necklace with…wait for it…a feather charm! She had no idea what’s been going on with me, and I must say I got chills when I opened the box.

I’ve researched the meaning of feathers a bit, and there seems to be a common consensus that it is associated with ascending to a higher spiritual plane. Interesting. Of course, I’m not necessarily wedded to the idea of a permanent feather on my body at this point, so my mind has turned to feather jewelry. Here’s a few pieces that have caught my eye.

Feathered Soul diamond feather on leather necklace (Not to be biased, but this one is my favorite on the list.)

feathered soul dimaond feather pendant
Michael Aram earrings

michael aram large feather drop earrings with diamonds
Ileana Makri gold and diamond ring

ileana makri diamond & yellow gold feather ring
Aurelie Bidermann earrings (actual swan feathers dipped in gold!)

aurelie bidermann swan feather drop earrings
Saint Laurent silver cuff

saint laurent silver feather cuff
Louise et Cie earrings

louise et cie feather drop earrings
Serafina feather necklace (Love the idea of incorporating actual feathers)

serafina feather necklace
Liven Co. diamond ring

liven co. diamond feather rose gold ring
Michael Aram ring

michael aram silver feather ring with diamonds
Or for just a subtle hint of a feather, studs by Alex & Ani.

alex and ani symbolic feather stud earrings
So I’m not sure what I’m going to do with this whole feather experience, but I’ll let you know.

Spring 2013 Trend: Snakes

Perhaps it’s because I live in San Francisco, which hosts one of the biggest Chinese New Year’s parades outside of China (no joke!), but the Year of the Snake (according to the lunar astrological calendar) is getting lots of press! This is translating right down to a resurgence of snake jewelry. Now this is certainly not a new theme. Everyone from Cleopatra in ancient Egypt to women of the Victorian era have donned this slithery creature in many forms. Purported to have powers of healing and protection, I’ve seen snake jewelry everywhere from the red carpet to the wrist of a teenage girl in my building.

Here’s Lorraine Schwartz’s fine adaptation as seen on Kim Kardashian.

Kim rockin' the snake!
Kim rockin’ the snake!

And the Philipp Plein runway wouldn’t have been complete without these snake cuffs.

These are pretty chic!
These are pretty chic!

Here are a few more user-friendly options. The first is a stretch bracelet by Cara, that would be a great spring addition to your bracelet stack.

Nice pop of color
Nice pop of color

If you’d rather go for a neutral metal, then you might like this brass cuff by Jennifer Fisher.

Low-key snake
Low-key snake

Here’s a nice combination of gold and emerald (one of the hot colors of the season) by Isharya.

Two trends in one!
Two trends in one!

Keeping with the green theme, these drop earrings by Sara Weinstock are pretty amazing!

Stunning snakes!
Stunning snakes!

You can also take a more minimal stand with these studs by Elizabeth and James.

Love their eyes...
Love their eyes…

There are also many incredible snake rings. Some of the designs are so creative, that you have to really look at them to tell what you’re looking at. Take this two-fingered ring by Ileana Makri.

Very sleek and modern
Very sleek and modern

Finally, for a more cost-effective way to wear the trend, this ring by Julie Vos will do the trick.

Lovely design
Lovely design

While I’m not sure that I will be adding any snake jewelry to my collection (truth be told, I still think snakes are a bit creepy), I am very impressed with all the beautiful and creative pieces out there. If snakes are your thing, then enjoy all the possibilities!