Tuesday, April 3, 2012

It’s All About The Stone

It definitely had my name written all over it and so I bought it. All winter I had been on the lookout for a new watch to wear during the upcoming summer season at Yellowstone. A small attached card noted its attributes: “Represents inner strength and lasting beauty. Strengthens your endurance to any situation or issue in your life. Assists in the rebuilding and reconstruction of any disarranged skeletal structures. Found in Utah.” 

IMG_1271DinosaurBoneWatch
The coolest watch in the world

Whatever. All I knew was that these dinosaur bone beads were about to find their new home on my wrist.

Over the past half a dozen years I have bought quite a few items from Sandy WhiteWinds at White Winds Stone Jewelry. “It’s All About the Stone” was her mantra when I first found her little booth at the summer Groovefest Music Festival in Cedar City. I was working on my geology degree at the time, studying the metamorphic rocks in the Beaver Dam Mountains of southwest Utah. What caught my eye at Sandy’s booth was a pair of earrings with small blue Kyanite beads. 

IMG_1275Kyanite Earrings
Kyanite earrings

Kyanite is a mineral that is found almost exclusively in fine-grained sedimentary rocks that are rich in aluminum. Under the extremely high pressure conditions that exist deep within the Earth, these aluminum–rich rocks have at some time been metamorphosed into something else such as gneisses, schists, amphibolites, and eclogites. Along with its buddies Sillimanite and Andalusite, Kyanite is a very important mineral used in identifying the grade and type of metamorphism of the original host rock. The three minerals have the same chemical composition but each is stable at different pressure–temperatures conditions. 

In the mineralogy lab at Southern Utah University we saw lots of Sillimanite in our slides from outcrops in the Beaver Dams, but did not (back then, anyway) see evidence of any higher–pressure Kyanite. 

Nevertheless, these earrings had my name written all over them. 

I bought other earrings from time to time, simply because of their inherent coolness. No fluff or frills, just the stone. 

IMG_1281 SerpentineEarrings
Serpentine earrings

IMG_1278Sodalite Earrings
Sodalite earrings

One Groovefest afternoon I brought a couple of small rock samples to Sandy’s booth. I had found them in the Beaver Dam Mountains and wanted to know if her business partner could transform these unassuming chunks of dusty blackness into a pendant and a pair of earrings. 

After a few weeks of eager anticipation, I drove up to her shop to claim the creations. 

As of that day I am the only person I know with earrings custom made from amphibolite (ancient metamorphosed basalt) along with a pendant whose origins can be traced to the Earth’s mantle. Woo hoo! 

These jewels definitely have my name written all over them. 

IMG_1277 Amphibolite Earrings
Earrings made from amphibolite (metamorphosed basalt)
IMG_1272 UltramaficMantle Rock
Pendant made from ultramafic rock from Earth's mantle
Sandy had nailed it. It truly is “All About The Stone.” 
 
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Find White Winds Stone Jewelry on Facebook.  If you are in southern Utah just drive to Enterprise and go to the little shop next to the convenience store.

6 comments:

  1. Love the new watch. The dino bone goes well with the copper. It really is All About the Stone.

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    1. Gaelyn - That's exactly what I thought!

      Sandy originally designed this piece as a bracelet, and when I saw it in her shop I said "Hmmm...If that were a watch I'd buy it." So she rummaged around in a drawer, found the watch face, and voila!

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  2. Thank you so much. The jewelry looks great on the blog. Have a wonderful summer hope to see you again. Let me know if any other stones call you name. Sandy

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    1. You are very welcome, Sandy. You know I will be back at your wonderful store one day!

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  3. White Winds Stone Jewelry looks like one of those unique shops that if you go in you will absolutely find something you cannot live without. I cannot wait for an opportunity to check it out. Thank you for telling us about it. I love all of your stone jewelry. Thank you for sharing the beauty and magic of the gifts from our beautiful Earth.

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    1. Wanda - You would really like Sandy and her unique White Winds Stone Jewelry. Now you have a reason to visit Enterprise!

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