Friday, November 16, 2012

The Work Room: Argentium silver

The Work Room: Argentium silver:

Here is a little info about argentium silver, my new lover. Click the link above or the image below to read a very informative article about argentium silver.  It costs a pretty penny, but is awesome stuff. So far I cannot find any evidence that anybody in the world is allergic to germanium, the new found metal that replaces the copper in this untarnishable sterling silver. It is reportedly "virtually unreactive in the body." My new argentium silver is 93% silver as opposed to typical sterling silver's 92.5% silver. I've already started using it and love its bendability. It is much less brittle than .925. So far I have not had any reaction to it and my metal allergies are so extreme that I cannot touch keys, coins, many zippers, silverware or eat food cooked in stainless steel cookware. (I am extremely allergic to nickel.)  This is very encouraging news for metal allergy sufferers.

Germanium in Argentium Silver

Friday, June 22, 2012

Chaos, Messes and Small Accomplishments

Jennifer Shipley Artwork
Umbrella Splats - Sumi Ink By Jennifer Shipley

Uugh.  I’ve had a migraine for at least a week, minus a day.  (That doesn't make any sense unless you are in my head.)   Anyway, it makes it really hard to get anything done or write a fun blog when you’ve got an ook infestation in your noggin.  (I can’t believe spellcheck liked that word, "noggin".  That fickle bugger.)
Jennifer Shipley Artwork
Evolution - Vector Graphic by Jennifer Shipley

So we just watched Ratatouille and my poor 5 year old nephew, Ben, hated it.  He got freaked out when they snuck into the old lady’s kitchen at the very beginning. He ran off crying and plugging his ears.  He doesn’t like anything new or anything even remotely suspenseful.  Poor thing.  He has "unique child that doesn’t fit into any box" syndrome.  And I have "over-stimulated auntie who can’t process the GARGANTUAN chaos" syndrome.  Four people (two of them children) are ALL TALKING AT THE SAME TIME and my family is SOOOOOOO LLLLOOOOUUUUUUUDDD!!!  AAAHHHHHHH!  I’m wearing mondo earplugs and STILL can’t hack it. My brain is thick and slow, like porridge that sat around for a day or so.

Jennifer Shipley Artwork
Tongue Tied - Ink Drawing by Jennifer Shipley

Oh MY.  And get this.  Ben was not obeying while eating at the island and knocked his bowl onto the granite floor.  CRAAAAASSHSHHHV###33SKKXTX$X%&#.  It completely shattered into itty bitty pieces.  Spaghetti EVERYWHERE.  Yay! 
Jennifer Shipley Artwork
Dyno-Boy - Colored Pencil by Jennifer Shipley

If I wasn't so thick I would have snapped a photo of it's spectacularness, but I had to rescue an extremely mobile (and grumpy) baby from sharp bits.  Now at the end of it all, her fever is down and mine is up.  Oh goodie. Bleh.  
At least I did find the energy today to finish my custom pendant and model it for my gal in Ireland.  It's a new design with a slipknot cord.  It won't turn backwards.  I find it annoying how cords are always turning backwards.   And the slipknot allows versatility in length, which I love because I tend to layer my jewelry.  I'm going to make more.
Golden Healer Pendant by Jennifer Shipley at DoodlepunkArt
Longer Length of Golden Healer Pendant by Jennifer Shipley at DoodlepunkArt

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Do Squirrels Hiss???

Today when I was outside watering the plants, I saw something run through the crack under the garage door.  I went in the house and downstairs into the garage to investigate.  I heard a scuffle and saw something fuzzy disappear under my car.  His tail wasn’t quite as puffy as most squirrels, but he was bigger than a chipmunk.  It sounded like he was hissing at me.  Do squirrels hiss?????  I got down on my hands and knees and could see the poor little guy hiding behind the tools and wood stacked against the wall. 

At this point I opened the garage doors so he could escape and Boo Boo was right there waiting.  Boo Boo is my two year old tuxedo kitty who has recently discovered that there are all kinds of edible creatures outside.  A month or so ago he caught a bunny, which took him two days to eat. :(  Horrible.  I know it’s just him doing what God made him to do, but blehhhh.  I feed him very well, a grain-free diet from the Pet Health Food Store, so there is no need for him to eat the cute and fuzzy things in this world.    

I grabbed Boo Boo, forcing him into the house.  He has been pacing  and moaning and crying ever since.  He sure knows how to express himself.

Update:  Apparently Squirrels do hiss, according to a number of sources on the internet, but this was actually a large chipmunk that hissed at me.  We don't get many up here on the top of the hill.  I'm guessing it's partly because all the tall trees are far below us, but the fact that I'm a cat lover, I am sure, has a bit to do with it. 

The day after I wrote this blog I saw Boo Boo coming up the hill with something fuzzy in his mouth.  I squealed and ran down the hill towards him.  He was so shocked that he leapt up in the air and opened his mouth.  A fluffy chipmunk popped out of his mouth, stunned. 

I ran up to him and stood between Boo Boo and the chipmunk, as Boo Boo froze, wondering what I was hollering about.  The little guy got his senses back, glared past me at Boo Boo and started yelling and cursing at him, then darted off down the hill screaming profanities the whole way.  I just thought you might enjoy this little update.  :)  Apparently chipmunks hiss too.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Inspirational Union, WA

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.  ~Martin Luther King, Jr.

I just had to share some snapshots I took last night of the view from my balcony.  It looked so heavenly with the rays of sunlight shining down through the clouds. 

Monday, January 23, 2012

Quartz with Montmorillonite

Recently I came across some amazing new quartz specimens for my collection.  I will be using them to make pendants in the next few months.  Some of these items are extremely rare, so rare that many of the inclusions are still alluding me at this point.  I am going to show you a series of photos of my quartz with montmorillonite.  Try a search on google for quartz with montmorillonite and see how many images you can find.  It's not very many. 

Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
These photos are of my quartz crystals with iridescent pink montmorillonite.  There are other minerals in these stones as well.  Perhaps mica is one of them.  The image I received from my supplier showed some very dirty, odd looking crystals.  I took a chance because I just had a hunch that underneath all of that mud, something spectacular was hiding, and I was right.

Quartz with Montmorillonite, mica and other minerals
These stones practically glow.  I have never seen anything like these before and it took quite a bit of research to figure out that the pink pearly mineral is most likely montmorillonite, which is a type of clay.  There is montmorillonite in bentonite clay. People have used montmorillonite for healing for centuries.

Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
This one has a coarse pink powdery clay that has been falling out of the hole you see on top.  It is especially interesting because while inside the crystal it looks very opalescent, but the dust just looks like pink dirt on the outside.

Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
I am so excited to work with these and hope they can handle the heat because these things are truly a spectacular find.  I think I'm going to use my new design to limit the amount of heat exposed to the stone.  The following is an example of how I am probably going to hang these.

Red Quartz Pendant
If there's one that stands out to you and you want a custom pendant, convo me through my etsy store at

Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals

Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
This web page has some good information about Montmorillonite:

This page has photos of a large quartz crystal with montmorillonite sawed in half:

This website has two pages on Quartz with Montmorillonite:

Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals
Quartz with Montmorillonite and other minerals

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Real Citrine vs. Heat-Treated Amethyst

Real Citrine
Citrine is a naturally yellow variety of quartz crystal and has a mohs hardness of 7. Also called lemon quartz, it is known in the metaphysical realm for its ability to promote prosperity and abundance. Energetically, it helps dissipate negativity and promotes optimism. Citrine aids in manifestation by inspiring confidence and motivation and aligning the user with his/her true will. Citrine is linked with the sun and acts on the solar plexus chakra.

Real Citrine Pendant with Phantoms
Citrine's yellow color is created by aluminum and lithium trapped inside the crystal structure that have been exposed to naturally occurring radiation. It is created in almost identical circumstances as smoky quartz with the same elements present. It is only the ratio of lithium to aluminum trapped in the crystal lattice which determines whether the crystal turns smoky or citrine when exposed to gamma rays. This is why there are smoky citrines - that Li:Al ratio often falls somewhere between what would create a citrine and smoky quartz.  

Black Phantom Quartz or Tibetan Black Quartz

On an interesting side-note, contrary to popular belief, the smoky color in quartz is not caused by carbon inclusions.  Carbon inclusion in quartz are opaque, NOT smoky.  Carbon does not make quartz smoky, but instead it creates opaque black spots or opaque phantoms, like in the photo of the Tibetan Black Quartz above.  (This stone is also called black phantom quartz.)  The color created by carbon is usually not even, but instead looks like black painted lines or spots of black coal. 

Smoky Citrine Crystal
Smoky Citrine Specimen from DoodlepunkArt
Now, let's get back on topic and discuss heat-treated amethyst.  Amethyst, in contrast to citrine, is colored by iron built into the quartz crystal lattice that has been exposed to gamma rays, not aluminum and lithium. Iron build into the quartz lattice ranges from yellow, to orange, red or brown.  When these crystals are exposed to gamma rays, they turn purple.  If amethyst is then heated to about 800 - 900 degrees Fahrenheit, it turns colors that vary from bright goldenrod, to amber, orange or brown and is sold as "citrine." True, unheated citrine is almost always not tinted to the orange side of yellow.  (One exception is some African citrine which has a bit more of an orangish-yellow-brown tint.)  Citrine's color usually ranges from smoky yellow, to olive tinted yellow to a lemon yellow that closer to the green spectrum of yellow than to the orange side.  See how the citrine in the photo above is a bit greenish?  Now look at the color  of the heated amethyst below.

Fake Citrine from Notice how the color is an orangish yellow.  Also, see the diamond shape? This crystal was broken from a cluster of amethyst crystals on a matrix, like the clusters shown down further in this document.  Heat treatment changed the color to a bright orangish-yellow.

Smoky Citrine Specimen from DoodlepunkArt
Smoky Citrine from Doodlepunk Art.  Notice how the color is more of a greenish-yellow.  Fake citrine will never range on the greenish side and real citrine will never be a bright golden yellow.

Since amethyst is found in abundance, most "citrine" sold on the market is actually heat-treated amethyst. Unfortunately, with all the heat-treated amethyst flooding the market, it can be challenging to find real citrines.  If you are looking at citrine for its metaphysical properties, be certain it is not heat-treated amethyst because it will not have the same healing properties as real citrine. Heated-amethyst "citrine" properties are almost identical to untreated amethyst. 

Smoky Citrine Crystal Pendant
Smoky Citrine Pendant from DoodlepunkArt - SOLD

Also, something else to consider when choosing between heat-treated amethyst and true citrine, is amethyst is very sensitive to light, so it will fade when exposed to high light until eventually the color will be gone completely if it is not carefully stored in the dark when not in use and carefully protected from direct sunlight.  Real citrine is less photoensitive so the color will last longer than amethyst, although I do recommend storing it in the dark as well when not in use, because it will fade as well, just not as quickly.  High temperatures will also fade citrine, so do not leave it in your car in the sun or steam clean it.

A smoky citrine available in my etsy shop at
A Genuine Smoky Citrine From DoodlepunkArt - Notice the parallel sides and darkness at base.
At least 99% of the "citrine" on the market is heat-treated amethyst, which again is colored by the presence of iron, not aluminum and lithium, like true citrine.  True natural citrine is extremely rare.  I have seen sellers of Madeira citrine (a higher heat product) say on their websites that the heat-treated imitation is more expensive than natural citrine, but that is not even remotely true. It is simply a ploy to get you to spend more money for a cheaper knockoff.  Why would something that is incredibly rare be less expensive than something that is abundant and not natural?

Real Smoky Citrine - Nearly parallel sides, the color is soft and earthy
It is legal (and standard) in the United States to sell heat-treated amethyst as "citrine", but sellers are supposed to disclose whether a stone is treated by calling it "enhanced."  Unfortunately most people selling heat-treated amethyst call it "natural citrine" and do not even know that it is NOT the real thing, so they do not inform the buyer, and will often actually tell their customers that it is real or untreated.  I don't believe that ignorance is a valid excuse.  It is the responsibility of a good vender to educate themselves about what they are selling in order to ensure that they are selling you what they claim, but many just don't take the time.  Also, there is a lot of misinformation out there, so figuring out the truth is not an easy task if you aren't an exceptionally meticulous and persistent researcher.  Still, your best bet for finding natural citrine is to learn for yourself how to distinguish it from heat-treated amethyst, so I'm going to teach you what you should look for so that you can be a smarter shopper:

Tibetan Smoky Quartz from
Tibetan Smoky Citrine available at  Notice how the sides (M-faces) are close to parallel to each other. 

Before we go any further, I would like to ask you to reread the next sections of this blog, and check out the captions on the photos prior to asking me questions.  I am getting many questions that are already answered here.  My goal is for YOU to be able to recognize real citrine and heat-treated amethyst when you see it.  

Fake Citrine (Heat-Treated Amethyst Cluster) - White at base and bright amber color.

Untreated Amethyst Cluster - Notice how it's much darker at the tips.
First, let's talk about shape.  Amethyst most commonly grows in a druzy/cluster formation on a matrix of rock, and individual crystals are broken off from these larger clusters.  Notice the matrix rock that the amethyst crystals grow from in the two photos above and the two below.  "Matrix" in geology refers to the solid matter (usually a rock) in which a fossil or crystal is embedded.  Most of the amethysts and heated "citrines" on the market grew on a matrix in a way very similar to these photos.  When broken from these druzies/geodes, the crystals have a "dogtooth" or diamond shapes which I will explain shortly. 

Fake Citrine (Heat-Treated Amethyst Cluster) - See the orange color, dark tips and diamond shape?

Untreated Amethyst Cluster - White base, dark at tips, diamond shaped crystals grouped on a matrix.
Citrine, by contrast, rarely (and perhaps never) grows in a druzy/geode clusters. (There are cluster formations, but they are shaped differently from amethyst clusters.  I have seen a lot of split growth clusters in citrine.  These are usually kept intact. )  

Genuine Citrine showing Split Growth Formation - this is an example of a citrine "cluster".  Notice how different it is from an amethyst druzy/geode cluster.

Now let's talk about the shape of the individual crystals.  The shape of a genuine, natural citrine crystal usually resembles a clear quartz crystal or a smoky quartz crystal - typically with long parallel sides or sides with a gradual taper as in a laser wand.   The sides of a crystal that lead from the base to the termination are called the m-faces.  Citrine, smoky quartz and clear quartz almost always have m-faces.  You can see this shape in the photo below and in all of the natural citrine photos in this article.   (Be sure to read the captions.)  In the cluster shown above, the smaller citrine crystals are sprouting from the m-faces of the crystal - a very interesting formation.

This is a genuine citrine.  The long sides that are almost parallel to each other, but taper gradually toward the termination are called m-faces.  Citrines almost always have m-faces, though growth conditions and mineral inclusions can distort the shape of them. 

By contrast, individual amethyst crystals most often have a very distinct diamond-like shape.  There are no parallel sides leading to or tapering towards a termination.  Another way to say this is that they often do not have m-faces at all.  Instead, the termination faces meet "sides" which dramatically taper towards where it attached to the matrix.  These "sides" taper in the opposite way, so they are thicker toward the point and narrow towards the matrix.  These are not actually m-faces or sides.  They are actually another termination that is embedded into matrix rock.  For more images try searching "raw amethyst crystal" on google images to familiarize yourself with the typical amethyst shape.  If a "citrine" resembles most amethysts in shape, then it is heat-treated amethyst, not natural citrine.

Fake Citrine (Heat-Treated Amethyst) - The diamond-shape, the dark tip with white base and the orangish-amber color are all dead giveaways.

Amethyst - See the diamond or dogtooth shape (indicating it was broken from a druzy cluster on a matrix) and the dark tip with the light base?

Next let's talk about color distribution.  Heat treated amethyst is usually darker at the tip and lighter at the base where it grew from it's matrix.  Notice how all of these amethysts and heat-treated amethysts in the photos above and below are darker at the termination and the color fades into white or almost white as it approaches the base where it attached to the matrix.    The color of true citrine is more even, or it has darker phantoms or patches inside. If it is lighter at the tip than at the base, then it is not heat-treated amethyst. 

Amethyst - Three more broken from a larger matrix.  There is less of the material closer to the matrix than in most of the other examples, but you can still see that there are no long parallel or gently tapering sides that resemble a clear quartz. Most amethyst crystals will be shaped like this.

Fake Citrine (Heat-Treated Amethyst) - See how there are no parallel sides leading to the termination? And again, an amber tip with a white base.
Fake Citrine (Heat-Treated Amethyst) - More amethysts broken from a cluster, all with orange-ish/amber color indicative of heat-treatment.  There are no parallel sides leading to terminations and the light areas are quite opaque white.
Amethyst - Same diamond shape crystals with white bases, broken from a cluster.
Another difference between the two is the color shade: natural citrine's color is usually pale yellow, lemon yellow, smoky yellow or greenish yellow. It's yellow color falls between the middle of the yellow spectrum to slightly on the green side of yellow and is often smoky.  If the color is bright, it is like an almost ripe lemon and is never golden.  Heat-treated amethyst has more of an orange-ish or amber tone - ranging on the opposite side of the yellow spectrum.  What that means is that if yellow is in the center, green (and citrine) is on the left of that and orange (and heat-treated amethyst) is on the right.  Heat-treated amethyst can fall anywhere on the right, from a bright goldenrod yellow (which is still yellow, but has a faint tint of orange) to orange, amber, sienna or brown.

There is something I have seen being sold for a very high price called "Ox Blood" or "Madeira" citrine. It is a darker, intensely saturated orangy-yellow color. This is higher temperature heat-treated amethyst.  Rarely is natural citrine ever orange, and on the extremely rare occasion that it is, there are other minerals involved that cause the orange color, and the results look quite different from the any of the images of fake citrine that I have posted. 

Real Smoky Citrine Sold by DoodlepunkArt
There are many websites and books touting that iron is what colors both natural citrine and amethyst.  The truth of this statement depends on whether you think citrine refers to a color or to a stone.   There are other yellow quartzes, including golden healer/ferruginous quartz and tangerine/iron-stained quartz.  For this reason, and also due to the difference in metaphysical properties between "iron citrine" and "natural citrine," I think "citrine" needs to refer to a specific stone, not just a yellow color.  I prefer to use three different names to describe "citrines":

  • Natural Iron Citrine - Yellow crystals colored by (irradiated) iron built into the crystal lattice which were exposed to heat from a natural source at some point during its formation.  These would have been amethysts if they had not been exposed to natural heat.  This is a very rare occurrence.  Healing properties are similar to amethyst or heat-treated amethyst.
  • Heat-treated Amethyst - Amethyst crystals (colored by irradiated iron built into the crystal lattice) that turned yellow after being exposed to man-made heat.  This is a very common stone with healing properties are similar to amethyst.
  • Aluminum Citrine, or simply Citrine.  Contains no iron and doesn't require heating for its yellow color.  Healing properties are very different from those of amethyst.  It is a true manifestation stone which activates the solar plexus chakra.  This is a very rare stone. 

Natural citrine and smoky quartz are colored with aluminum and lithium, which are naturally irradiated.  This is why citrine and smoky quartz have been found at the same mine.  Amethyst and aluminum citrine aren't usually found together in the same location.  Ametrine on the other hand may or may not be natural.  I'm not sure.  I have seen no significant evidence proving that it exists naturally.  I've read that it is simply amethyst that was heated until it turns yellow, areas were masked with a substance such as lead, then it was exposed to radiation, which turned the unmasked areas back to its original purple color.  However, I have seen no significant evidence suggesting that all ametrine is manipulated my man either.  I suspect that if it does actually exist naturally, it is extremely rare, and that most of what is out there is either man-made through a heat/re-irradiation process of amethyst, or is simply iron-stained amethyst (amethyst with an orange coating of iron oxide dust on the outside.)

Genuine Pale, Medium and Smoky Citrines From My Collection
Tumbled Fake Citrine (Heat-Treated Amethyst)
Besides the differing metaphysical properties, here is another downside to heat-treated amethyst: stone strength.  The heat treatment weakens the stone, causing minute little fractures. Do not be duped. If you think it is pretty and you choose to buy it, do not spend a high price for this material. Amethyst, especially in broken pieces, is very common and inexpensive and anyone with a kiln can bake it to create "citrine." IMHO it is unethical to sell this stuff as "citrine" (even though it is legal), even worse to call it "natural citrine" and worse yet to ask for a high price; and telling people that the treated stuff is more valuable is a downright lie.  If someone wants to sell the stuff, I think they should call it what it is:  Treated Citrine or Heat-Treated Amethyst

Citrine Sphere Pendant Necklace Sold at
Citrine Sphere Pendant SOLD at DoodlepunkArt
One of my favorite quartz websites has a page on citrine that explains the science behind its formation in greater detail:

Large Smoky Morion Citrine Pendant available at
Smoky Morion Citrine With Phantoms Pendant SOLD at DoodlepunkArt
I am always adding raw citrine specimens to my etsy store at .  If you don't see one and would like to get one, just convo me and I'll hook you up.  I also sell smoky citrine and morion citrines like the pendant above and the specimen below.  I make citrine sphere pendants like the one two photos up and raw citrine pendants like the ones you have seen in this listing.  They usually go really fast, so if you want to order one and don't see any in my shop, just send me a convo and I will make one for you or give you a sneak peak of what's in the works and let you pick one.  My turnaround is much quicker in the summer than in the winter, as the cold weather is not conducive to my process. 
Specimen available at
Smoky Morion Citrine Key Crystal with Phantoms

These etsy items from other sellers are genuine citrine as well:
(Please note - there is an updated list of other vendors' items after the addendum at the end of this article.)

Notice how the color differs from the other citrine out there. (There was a lot of faceted "citrine" and I did not have time to study each one.)

Now, take note of the color of the real citrine sold by this website: Although the most of the stones are chunks or cut, the color is what you should be looking for, and they do have a couple of raw whole crystals in there.

This website has a lovely sample of real citrine at the top and explains how they make "citrine" and "ametrine" from amethyst:

And one more real citrine specimen is on this page: It also has links to citrine jewelry, but I have not checked any of them out.

This site will educate you about the most common fakes in the mineral/crystal/gemstone world. I posted one of their photos of face citrine at the top.  Scroll down to Citrine:

Now, here are links to images of heat treated amethyst that came up when I searched google for "genuine citrine", and unfortunately they are all FAKE:

I hope this information is helpful. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. However, please don't send me any more long lists of other people items asking me to identify whether they are real or not.  I am sorry, but I have been getting too many requests and it is taking too much time from my own shop. I do sell genuine citrine at great prices and have posted links to other people who also sell it.  Some of the items people have been asking me about are very obviously heat-treated amethyst, almost identical in appearance to the many examples that I show in this article.  I feel that some folks would rather ask me instead of learning how to figure it out themselves, which isn't what I am going for here.  My goal in writing this article is not for me to answer lots of questions about other vendors' items; it is to help people be informed shoppers and be able to recognize heated amethyst when they see it.  If after reading the sections about the differences between citrine and amethyst a couple of times, you still can't tell if something is real (because it falls outside of the norm), then post a link and I'll tell you what I think.  Sometimes things are not so easy to tell what they are, but I do explain how to identify most citrine and amethyst using very common features, which will apply to the majority of examples out there.   
Raw citrine pendant sold in my store.  Notice the phantoms that show different stages of the crystal's growth.  This is a very large and rare specimen mined in China. 

 ©Jennifer Shipley
The content of this article is the intellectual property of Jennifer Shipley.  Please do not copy without my written consent.



I went to a gem and jewelry show this weekend.  There was a vender selling gorgeous rough gemstones for faceting at wholesale prices.  They were charging by the gram for the raw material.  They called the citrine that was the color of the stuff I've got "Lemon Citrine" and were selling it at $4/gram.  They were selling a very intense and saturated amber/yellow citrine at $6/gram. Some of these pieces were whole crystals and they were definitely NOT amethysts.  I don't remember where they came from.  The crystals were long and straight like clear quartz, not the dog-tooth shape of amethyst, and there was absolutely no fracturing that occurs with the heat process, so I am 100% certain they were the not heated, though I have never seen it that color in person before.  The Quartz Page has some examples that approach orange in color, one from Brazil and the others from Kazakhstan and Madagascar, however the color was even more bright.  It was quite amazing and definitely not the typical citrine color.  The saturation in color in these specimens was perfectly even and practically free of inclusions.  I am sure this is why the price was so high.  This is the first time I have ever seen the real thing so perfect in the rough form.  AMAZING STUFF for faceting. 

On another note, last night I was perusing through etsy's "unheated citrine" items and stumbled upon a woman calling herself a sage who is selling the prime example of heat-treated amethyst.  She states that it is untreated, but it is obviously heat-treated amethyst.  It couldn't be more obvious.  The shape is dog-toothed, the color is burnt orange, there is tons of white, the tips were dark and the base was opaque white and there was the telltale crackled appearance of a low budget and haphazardly performed heat-treatment.  I assumed she did not know the difference, so I sent her this message:

"Hi. I stumbled across your stones. I'm really sorry to inform you of this, but it is heat-treated amethyst, not untreated citrine. I just thought you should know. Good luck.


She wrote this back to me:

"Jen, thanks! I actually teach a course on stones and discuss the differences between HT amethyst and citrine. Some may not know, however, so it's good that you're aware and spreading the info. All of my tumbled and my raw pieces that are not points are untreated. I buy directly from the mines in Brazil.

Blessings, A_____"

I'm really confused because there was only one photo for the listing and the stones were all heated amethyst points.  I got a sick feeling in my gut when I read her message.  I'm not sure if she is a liar or just uninformed.  I can't understand why her photo is of heated amethyst, but what she claims to be selling is real, unheated citrine.   I think people should be educated about what they are selling, and be certain that the claims they make are accurate.  I find it disturbing that she is soooo clearly wrong and is "educating" people.  I feel a little, I don't know, dismayed irritated.  I really don't like it when people self-proclaim their guru-ness, then dole out bullshit like it should be faceted and set in jewelry.  

So, I have not responded to her message at this point.  What can I say???  I suppose it was foolish for me to offer unsolicited information to a stranger in the first place; and it is probably pointless to engage her any further, because she doesn't know me from Adam and apparently thinks that she knows what she is talking about.   A lot of sellors will tell you whatever will make you buy their stuff, then others are simply misguided, but unopen to hearing what they know you won't like.  I've got a bit of a protective watchdog personality, so I had a very difficult time letting this go.

Please BE VERY LEERY, folks.  Check out The Quartz Page if you want to read more a more technical and science-y explanation of citrine.  This guy really knows his stuff. 

In an effort to support and reward those honest and knowledgeable etsy sellers that are selling the real deal, I have compiled a new list of citrine items so that you have not only my store to shop in, but also some others.  If you sell genuine citrine and would like me to consider listing you here as a safe seller, please convo me on etsy:  These are the only real citrine tumbled stones I seen and the price is unbeatable...lower than what many folks are selling heated amethyst for. 

Raw Crystals:

PureSpiritCrystals currently has 5 raw whole citrine crystals for sale at very competitive prices:

This shop also has broken pieces at a very, very low price.

These links go to lovely, real, untreated faceted citrine crystals:
These are Citrine Pendants: