Abrecht Bird Jewellers, peridot sterling silver ornament, peridot, sterling silver, Greg John, jewellery ornament

The final hand crafted piece

A Christmas Lily, Abrecht Bird Jewellers, hand crafted ornaments, peridot, custom made jewellery, custom made designs<br />

Master Jeweller Greg John presenting the finished item to the client

A Christmas lily for a Christmas birthday

Back in August 2021, we received a phone call from a client enquiring about making an ornament for his wife’s 70th birthday using, if possible, peridot from south-west Victoria – an area with many associations for her.
As the birthday fell on Christmas Day, the ornament needed to incorporate a Christmas lily, which is a favourite flower because of its Christian links.
Our jewellery designer, Greg, set about creating various sketches, one of which included an olivine ‘bomb’, upon which a silver and gold Christmas lily would be mounted. Peridot is the gem variety of the mineral olivine.

Peridot bombs … are crystals that were flung from a volcano when it erupted.

Peridot bombs, also known as olivine bombs, are crystals that were flung from a volcano when it erupted. These crystals are surrounded by basalt rock and have peridot in the middle. Peridot bombs are said to boost your confidence and help you to achieve your goals. Physically, they may help relieve symptoms of sinus, migraines and nausea.

The task of sourcing such a specimen was handed to Leon; not surprisingly, none of our gemstone merchants were able to assist. Enquiries with various contacts in the lapidary field led to the obvious place to look: Mount Shadwell Quarry located 3 km north of Mortlake, owned and operated by Moyne Shire Council. This quarry provides scoria products to the construction and roadwork industries, as well as
farmers, trades, and the home handy person – not normally a place you’d expect to find gemstone specimens. However, some of the best olivine specimens have been found there and gemstone fossickers regularly visit the site. Mortlake is the self-proclaimed olivine capital of the world.
The quarry manager referred Leon to one such person, Alan, who has what is regarded as one of the largest collections of olivine bombs, many with gem-quality crystals. After briefing Alan on the idea, he agreed to look through his collection and send photographs of suitable specimens.

Greg agreed on a specimen that would be ideal for his design and so began the process of constructing the ornament. The bomb duly arrived by post and work proceeded on the silver lily in our workshop.
The result is a beautifully designed and crafted ornament of silver and gold that will grace the mantlepiece, providing lifetime memories of the time spent in the region.

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