Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Faceted opalite plugs
Although often classified as an organic material, faceted opalite plugs and other opalite stone jewelry are actually made from a synthetic glass. To confuse consumers, there are some natural stone materials referred to as "opalite", however this is not the typical material used in the making of most jewelry, including plugs.
Opalite is a type of silica based glass that has an opacifier added to it to interrupt clarity and allow greater light refraction. It is also called Tiffany stone or opalized flourite. It is considered an ideal stone for meditation and communication. It can produce a calming effect.
Historically, the first types of glass produced that involved this process are today called "milk glass". In the 16th century in Venice, Italy, a new type of glass made by adding tin dioxide or bone ash produced an opaque or translucent white glass that gained in popularity. Other colours including blue, pink and yellow followed.
Opalite is a popular jewelry material because it produces a luminous, glowing, blue colour on dark backgrounds and in low light, that is certain to gain attention. Milky, blue tinted, white under bright light, it surprises with an amber hue when held up to light and viewed directly through the glass.
Opalite plugs can be faceted by cutting and polishing the jewelry piece at specific angles, creating a light reflecting brilliance, which makes them a popular choice for today's style conscience consumer.