Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Mid-Week Mutterings - Beadalon CZ-Gem Dropz Necklace

I had the opportunity a while back to make the acquaintance of a Beadalon rep and mentioned how interesting I thought their CZ-Gem Dropz were but that my local stores didn't carry them. He kindly offered to send me some samples, and today I'm thrilled to talk about a necklace I just finished using them.

I received purple two hole 4mm Dropz, round and square shapes, the specially sized light-weight jump rings made for working with the drops by Beadalon, and decided to match them up with the last bits of sterling granulated diamond curb-chain I've used in other jewelry, purchased from Artbeads. The focal is a checkerboard amethyst from Fire Mountain Gems on a thin gauge sterling headpin from Artbeads.

I love the rich, deep purple of these CZ-Gem Dropz. They have two holes drilled front to back for the jump rings to go through, then you can attach them to what ever findings you choose - I was looking for something that, to my eye, suited the delicate look and size and the curb chain kind of jumped out at me.

I had some challenges with a couple of the drops, cracked one trying to get a jump ring in. The majority of them worked perfectly though. I found the Beadalon light weight jump rings very easy to work and they closed up very well, the cuts were flush and clean.

The Dropz I received are cut so the bottom half is faceted to a point, so I think they're going to scratch a bit as a necklace, so these probably do work best in earrings, but we'll see.

I was a bit disappointed with the checkerboard cut amethyst from Fire Mountain - these are currently listed at over $40 a set (you get three - and the price does go down to $36 with Fire Mountain's assortable savings if you've purchased 14 other items) and the holes were poorly drilled - my finest gauge head pin would not go all the way through two of them and I wouldn't like to risk trying to use a reamer to enlarge the hole.

I ended up using one of the smaller pair of the set because that's the only one I could get the head pin through. The stone itself is a nice purple and the checkerboard facets are lovely. The stones have some pretty significant visible flaws inside, too, which kind of spoils the look if held up to the light. I think it will be ok against clothing.

See you tomorrow!

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