Heavy rain is still falling in parts of eastern Australia but hopefully will start to ease soon. I noticed that in Melbourne, which has had a few cold days, more leaves have turned autumn colours. In my last post, I featured jewellery made with carnelian and agate but I just wanted to include one more carnelian piece. The maltese cross at the top of the post is made of beautiful orange carnelian pieces. It is Georgian, with a glass central panel set around with ornate gold cannetille and wire work. The central panel was intended to house hair and would probably have had a gemstone set front. It is a striking piece.
There are other autumn coloured gems though besides chalcedony quartz, such as the citrine. Citrine is a macrocrystalline quartz, usually transparent, and comes in lovely shades of yellow, with some bordering on orange. The necklace above is a classic example of late Georgian jewellery, with facetted citrines interspersed with small creamy seed pearls.
Moving away from the quartz family, there are a number of other autumn coloured gems like amber, spessarite garnet, orange and gold sapphires, sunstone, Mexican fire opal, and some corals.
Coral, for instance comes in lovely shades ranging through creams, to pale pink, to salmon orange and dark orange and red. The coral in the ring below would probably have come from the town of Torre del Greco near Naples. In 1876, a School for the Manufacture of Coral and Cameos was founded by Umberto I to train coral carvers and engravers was established in Torre del Greco and it became a popular spot for Grand Tour participants to visit to buy souvenirs.
Finally, there are also pieces of jewellery made from synthetic materials such as celluloid and bakelite. The little amphora below, with its gold chain and ring, is moulded out of an early version of celluloid.