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Saturday, July 27, 2013

Tax Free Day is Coming (Maybe)!

triangular amethyst earrings in 18k yellow gold with diamonds
18k yellow gold with amethysts, diamonds and freshwater pearls
There was a short blurb in the Boston Globe this week that the state legislature is considering authorizing another tax free weekend (August 10-11) sometime in the upcoming week.  In the last ten or twelve years they have only skipped the tax free weekend once, so I'm pretty certain that they will push the bill through again this year. Unfortunately the governor usually likes to wait until the last minute to sign the bill into law but there doesn't seem to be any reason for them not to have it this year so I'm pretty certain it will be a fact. 

And along with tax free weekend Daniel R. Spirer Jewelers, has their annual one day sale!  So it's sale time again.  Please note that you must be an existing customer to take part in this sale so if all you've ever done is read my blog and you haven't been in before the sale won't do you any good. However you can still take advantage of the tax free part of the weekend (and then next year you can take advantage of the sale).  Sales up to $2500 are tax free (but if the piece is $3000, you still have to pay tax on the entire amount) and if you want to place an order and pay for it in full on tax free day, that is also tax free (again up to $2500).  For my regular customers who are readers here, we are again offering that you can come in the week ahead of time and pick out what you would like, leave us a credit card number and we will just run it through on tax free day (since it seems like everyone is away every weekend this summer).  So if you're thinking your husband or wife should be buying you a nice Christmas gift from me this year send him in, or if you have been yearning for a pair of my earrings to match one of your rings from me, or if you're just fed up with not having any new things to wear in your life, then come on in! Details will be sent out on our email list as soon as the law is actually signed by the governor. 

The earrings pictured above have amethysts and diamonds in 18k yellow gold. 

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Danwardian Style Earrings

18k and 22k yellow gold earrings with South Sea pearls
18k and 22k gold earrings with South Sea Pearls and Garnets
I had a customer come in recently whose wife apparently is watching some show on television now that takes place during the Edwardian period and for a 25th wedding anniversary present he wanted to give her a pair of earrings reminiscent of the period.  He wanted it to be a pearl drop but we went around a few times about the other stones he wanted to use and finally ended up going with tsavorite garnets.  As always the design kind of evolved as I was working on it.  He wanted the top piece as you see it here (a little commercial looking for my taste, but it did seem to be used during the period) but the rest was up to me.  The pearl caps came next and making the garnets work on them properly was a bit challenging as I didn't want the settings sticking out too far. Then I was originally going to do two straight links connected to each other but I couldn't get them to look right doing that so I threw out that idea altogether and used just the one link and made up some 22k gold balls to go above them.  Et voila! Danwardian earrings! If you're all lucky some day I'll stop making all these bad play on words!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

I'm Back (Again).

I am back to work at the shop again after taking a week off. This year we didn't go anywhere so we had a staycation but we did manage to get to a couple of museums.  We went up to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem to see the Faberge exhibit there.  Unfortunately there were only three eggs on display, and none of them were shown open, however there was a lot of other work that came out of the Faberge house that was interesting as well. It is certainly worth a trip and the museum itself is beautiful and has a number of other interesting exhibits (the Chinese house is quite something although I recommend you don't go when it's 95 degrees out as we did as the house is outside and they didn't have air conditioning in them when it was built).

We also got back to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.  I can't remember if I wrote about this previously, but the last time we went, I was excited to see a special jewelry exhibit they had up.  Unfortunately it was one of the worst jewelry exhibits I have ever seen in a museum, with virtually nothing of interest worth looking at.  However on this trip we went into the Egyptian section and had a chance to see the jewelry on display there (all the time).  Now this was a great exhibit. There are a number of Egyptian, Etruscan and Roman pieces there that are excellent examples of the amazing work that was done in those periods, with none of the tools that we have available to us today.  They had one Etruscan piece in particular that had an amazing example of the fine granulation work done during the period. The beads on the piece were so small they looked like dust, but they were most definitely individual gold beads.  When these pieces were made they had to use blow torches, they had no steel so they couldn't pull wire but had to make it either by twisting thin pieces of sheet together or hammering it out, and absolutely everything was done by hand (no Cad/Cam in those days!). 

In the meanwhile, back at the ranch, I'm working on some interesting custom pieces and a new chain link design that I hope to have out in the next month or two.  Please note my new summer hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday 11-6 and Saturday 11-5, Thursdays 6-8 by appointment only.  The piece pictured above is a custom job I did for some customers a number of years ago which came back for a cleaning recently.  It's 18k yellow gold with sapphires and diamonds.