For any manufacturer in the jewelry market, the word marcasite jewelry is known. This brassy, metallic semi-precious stone that has been in use for ages is still making waves among jewelry pieces. It remains one of the most popular jewelry in history. About Marcasite Jewelry.
The fact that it is inexpensive makes it all more attractive. It has been used in the making of brooches, earrings, bracelets, and necklaces. Here are the things to know about marcasite for any manufacturer or anyone interested in the wonderful marcasite jewelry. About Marcasite Jewelry.
Everything You Should Know About Marcasite Jewelry As A Manufacturer
THE HISTORY OF MARCASITE
Marcasite has been around for a very long time. So long that the ancient Greeks used. There is evidence of marcasite influence on the Greek civilization. The Thracians in Northern Greece excelled at marcasite pieces, of which some still survive till today. Queen Cleopatra of Egypt was said to have, in addition to various jewels, marcasite jewelry believed to enhance beauty.
Humans all over the world knew about it. The Incas in South America used marcasite for ornaments and to decorate places. They made use of it so much that marcasite is sometimes referred to as “The gemstones of the Incas” They made mirrors out of it, which they believed could be used to see the future.
In the medieval era, marcasite was believed to have healing powers. The medieval doctors used it for eye and tooth ailments. Marcasite rose to popular use during the Victorian era due to the fact that Queen Victoria took a liking to them. Old marcasite pieces that remain pieces are seen as vintage. They are popular among collectors.
It was the Art Deco designers who came after the Art Nouveau designers that popularized marcasite jewelry using motifs of nature to make marcasite jewelry in the style that would later be called Art Deco style. Art Deco-styled marcasite jewelry is known for its beauty and is still in demand today.
The marcasite jewelry that followed in the 1920s deviated from natural motifs to geometric shapes. Today, Victorian-era marcasite: Art Nouveau and Art Deco are referred to as vintage marcasite jewelry. It would be the jewelry for you if you fancy history, charm, and art all rolled into a piece of jewelry.
WHAT IS MARCASITE GEMSTONE?
The word Marcasite is Arabic in origin. It was the Arabic word for Pyrite(Fools gold) marqashītā. Both stones look alike, but marcasite is paler while pyrite is darker and harder. Both stones are however brittle, but pyrite is more stable than marcasite.
Marcasite is a granular stone.
Marcasite occurs naturally all over the world, and it forms at a lower temperature in caves, clay, and coal. It grows in huge chunks. It’s found in Europe, Mexico, Peru, and the United States Of America. On the Moh scale, it comes out as 6 to 6.5 degrees of hardness. About Marcasite Jewelry.
Marcasite is therefore not so tough. Marcasite is so brittle that it has to be combined with other minerals, often pyrite, for it to be worked upon to make jewelry. Marcasite jewelry is actually made more of pyrite than marcasite! Sometimes marcasite isn’t even present in the compound. About Marcasite Jewelry.
I know what you’re thinking now; why then is it called marcasite jewelry? Well, the truth is we humans have been calling pyrite marcasite for a really long time. Most antique pieces of marcasite are pyrite. Since the two metals look alike, nobody made a distinction; the name stuck. About Marcasite Jewelry.
Today marcasite can be made part of everyday life. The fact that it is pocket-friendly means anyone can have it. The thing with marcasite is that since the materials that go into making it are generally inexpensive, the jewelry is cheap as a result. There is a difference between Old marcasite and new marcasite.
What’s the difference between Old marcasite and new marcasite?
Old marcasite is quite popular among collectors as vintage. When you’re out looking for vintage marcasite pieces lookout for clues as such: If the marcasite you are buying is stamped GERMANY, there’s a good chance it is vintage. Germany was the biggest producer of marcasite before World War Two. Valuable items for export were hallmarked GERMANY.
When you are buying Marcasite jewelry, make sure it is hallmarked. About Marcasite Jewelry.
If it’s handmade rather than caste, it is probably older and of higher quality. The setting of the marcasite gives a clue of its age. Modern pieces are often glued in by the use of a magnifier. Old marcasite was set by curving a foundational material over the edge of the piece, fixing it in. If it’s glued in, it’s considered inferior. About Marcasite Jewelry.
How To Tell If It is Marcasite
If you want to be sure that a marcasite gemstone is legit, run it against a surface. Marcasite should leave a greenish to black streak on it also; if the jewelry is magnetic, then it is definitely not marcasite. Marcasite is non-magnetic. This is one way to detect imitation made of steel.
USING MARCASITE IN JEWELRY DESIGNING.
Marcasite pieces are usually set in steel, gold, or sterling silver. The cheaper stuff is made by gluing the pieces to the metals. Most of the marcasite pieces we see contain different stones unless they are small bracelets or brooches.
This is a pavement-like pattern due to the small size and affordability of the gems. The cut and polished marcasite pieces reflect light at different angles that make it shine and attractive across its facets. About Marcasite Jewelry.
Designs, of course, are dependent on what your customers want. Be sure to explain to them in detail what their design would require. If it is not practical, do well to tell them. About Marcasite Jewelry.
Cleaning Marcasite Jewelry
Marcasite jewelry needs cleaning, just any other jewelry. Take care to clean with a soft, damp cloth as marcasite is made of pyrite can be brittle. About Marcasite Jewelry.
If you go too hard on it, you could ruin it. Keep chemical solutions away from marcasite to prevent tarnishing. Don’t ever soak marcasite in water or any jewelry for that matter! It causes rusting and tarnishing. Keep at a cool temperature.