Amber is a lightweight gem of fossilised tree resin. Most of the world's amber is from 30 million to 90 million years old and traditionally found around the Baltic Sea in Eastern Europe.
Bijoux Collection Genuine Baltic Amber jewellery designs are crafted in Poland and Lithuania by our specialist amber jewellers, expert in the selection of Amber pieces and the creation of fine jewellery. Our Polish jewellers create the sterling silver & amber pieces and our Lithuanian jewellers create the plain amber necklaces and pendants.
Amber is naturally available in different colours
Cognac - the most popular colour. Usually a translucent warm dark honey colour which can also appear as the yellowy/orange that is associated with the colour ‘amber’.
White – opaque creamy tones.
Lemon – pale yellow usually translucent.
Cherry – dark red usually translucent.
Brown/Black – very dark almost opaque.
Blue - extremely rare and highly sought after.
Green – an artificial colour created from lemon amber with a blue backing material. (We don't sell green amber because it's not a natural colour)
Amber inclusions are increasingly rare
Because it used to be a soft and sticky tree resin amber can include beautifully preserved plant-structures, remains of insects, spiders, frogs, crustaceans and other small organisms trapped by the sticky surface and enveloped while the resin was fluid. These inclusions are only found in a very small percentage of amber pieces.
How can you tell if amber is real?
Amber can be counterfeited (particularly with insect inclusions) using a plastic resin. Often insects in counterfeit amber will look unnaturally perfect.
The simplest test is also one of the oldest: rub the amber piece vigorously on a piece of wool; it will generate a static charge, enough to pick up a small piece of ash. When it is warm enough, it also gives off a distinctive resin odour.
There are other tests but they tend to be destructive and/or technical and are best left to specialists.
We guarantee all Bijoux Collection amber is genuine Baltic amber. Each piece sold by us comes with a Certificate of Authenticity and an amber care leaflet.
Size, Colour & Shape determine amber's value
Larger pieces are rarer than smaller pieces and so cost more per gramme than smaller found pieces. The more even shapes and clearer colours also increase the value.
Large, evenly shaped beads, especially spherical beads, cost more to produce than irregular shaped beads. To create these evenly shaped and sized beads a quantity of rough amber is wasted as it is cut away. The cost of the beads reflects the initial price of the amber before the piece is cut and polished down to size.
Uneven shaped beads can be finished to follow the natural shape of the amber resulting in very little amber waste. Uneven or discoloured pieces of amber, once thrown away as poor quality, are now sought after to create more unusual and interesting jewellery items.
To create different pieces of amber jewellery, pieces are carved, turned on a lathe or worked by hand to create the desired shape, the final lustre is created by polishing.
The price of amber has dramatically risen over recent years due to increased demand and reduced availability. The price of amber (and silver) have more than doubled in the last 10 years.
Amber is a relatively soft gem and care must be taken when wearing and storing amber products to avoid damage by abrasion or impact. Please refer to our Genuine Baltic Amber care leaflet (included with every purchase) for more guidance.
Amber health benefits
Amber is used in traditional Chinese medicine for healing and health enhancement.
Natural Baltic Amber is said, by alternative medicine practitioners, to detoxify, alleviate arthritis pain, improve breathing, aid circulation and relax the body if worn on the skin.
(We are not qualified to confirm or refute these claims - please seek professional advice.)
For more information about Bijoux Collection Genuine Baltic Amber please call us on 1300BIJOUX (+612 9412 4270) or email us.
© 2012 Bijoux Collection