Tag Archives: selling diamonds

Outlandish Jewelry Terminology

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Starting with “O”

Objets de Vertu – Here we step outside of the traditional definition of what constitutes jewelry (an object that is physically attached to you in some manner), to include Objets de Vertu.  These are any of the fancy, often gem encrusted and precious metal based items that people typically use to transport functional things.  Pearl inlaid cigarette cases, solid gold lighters, platinum cell phones cases with intaglios of Bernie Sanders, etc. 

Objets Trouvés – While their origins date back to neolithic times, Objets Trouvés are a favorite of environmentally conscious jewelry designers working today.  The term translates from French (which obviously Early Man spoke fluently) to “found objects.”  Ergo, before modern jewelry, which utilizes all manner of technology, had been invented, people made things out of whatever they could find; shells, bones, teeth, pebbles and AOL installation CDs.  

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Oiling – this is a process (which is true to its name) that was designed to improve the overall color and quality of gemstones (mostly emeralds) that have internal fractures that creep to the their surfaces.  By literally oiling them up with a specific lubricant, the cracks are filled and the stones look a little brighter.  Be weary of any oily jewelers trying to pass such slippery stones off on to you. 

Omega Back – while this sounds like the name of a hip, new British thriller on Netflix, it’s actually the back portion found on mostly vintage earrings.  It’s a little loop that holds the earrings in place.  In the shape of the Omega letter of the Greek alphabet (familiar to any of you collegiate toga donning folk), it works with pierced and non-pierced ear earrings; the hoop holds up the pointy part, or just acts as a clasp.

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Opaline Glass – a grand imitator of precious gemstones, Opaline Glass appears in a bluish, cloudy hue.  A metallic, foil backing to the faux fancy stone really makes its color “pop.”   A trendy item during the Georgian period (no, not when the state of Georgia was popular…nor the country…but when 4 consecutive King Georges reigned in England; 1714 through 1830).  It saw a brief rival during the second Georgian period (the two Bush presidencies).   

Opera Length Necklace – the name may be self evident, but the actual length is somewhat specific.  To qualify for this distinction, the necklace must be between 26 and 36 inches in length, and it has to be worn with a fancy dress out to actual operas, hip-hoperas or, in the very least, while watching you favorite soap opera.  

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Opus Interrasile – a golden hit during the Byzantine era, this is a process of puncturing metal with a sharp device in order to pepper it with a multitude of stylish holes.  This translates from Latin to “work openings,” which is exactly what Roman goldsmiths were always scouring Craigius’s List for.    

Oreide – or ‘oroide’ or “French Gold” – this is an alloy which winningly masquerades as gold, utilizing mostly copper, with a little molten zinc and tin thrown in there for seasoning.  

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Ouch – yes…this one is gonna hurt.  Ironically, this describes a piece of jewelry, usually a pendant or brooch, that doesn’t require a sharp pin to hold it in place; rather it is hand sewn onto one’s clothing.  Typically they would feature a central gem surrounded by a fine metal filigree.  Chaps frolicking around during Medieval times would use them as the fastening parts of their flowing cloaks (with a chain that connected them).  The gemstone component would make them valuable, naturally, so if one were to fall off, people would remark “…ouch.”

Ouroboros – one of the coolest ancient symbols found in jewelry.  It’s a snake or dragon that is biting its own tail, thus completing a perfect and eternal loop (great for necklaces, obviously).  It symbolizes the cyclical aspect of nature and self-reflexivity in beings with consciousness and also exemplifies really hungry snakes.  Folks in the 1840’s went mad for these things, sticking winking precious gemstones in the eye sockets and scaring children.     

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Overtone – a property that only certain pearls will exhibit, this describes a secondary, and sometimes even tertiary, hue that is visible over the pearl’s primary color.  These can manifest in light green, blue and pink…overtones.  

Oxide Finish – here we have metal that gets entirely dipped in a black finish, like taking an permanent bath in tar.  Usually strategic parts are buffed to allow for the underlying metal to shine through.  This is a great way to showcase the intricacies of a silver engagement ring with fine filigree or the dented fender of a Ford Pinto.  

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-Joe Leone 

Diamond No-No’s

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So you’ve got a diamond.

A beautiful, sparkling, glorious diamond.  It can twinkle in the dimmest of light.  It can turn heads from across the room.  It is absolutely perfect.

Except for one little thing.  It has __________.

“Well, what’s the ‘blank’?” you indignantly wonder.  “My diamond has great specs!”  That may be, but there are factors that go beyond just the basic 4C’s that can have a surprisingly drastic affect on a diamond’s value. 

Let’s now take a look at some of the most prevalent and also some of the more obscure things that can negatively impact your diamond and its overall resale value.  

Fracture Filling

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If your diamond has undergone fracture filling, you yourself may end up filled with despair.  This is a process that is applied to natural diamonds to essentially ‘fill up’ internal cracks within the stone (to improve their clarity – ergo, this is a brand of “clarity enhancement”).  The fractures are filled with a substance (a lead oxychloride glass epoxy) that has a similar refractive index to diamond (thereby maintaining its normal sparkle), in order to best mask the flaws to the naked eye.  If these cracks run all the way up to the surface, the glass-based glop can just be injected right in; if not, then the stone must be “laser drilled” to get in there (we’ll get to that whole practice in just a minute).  “So, what’s so bad about that?” you justifiably may be thinking.  The problem is this; the solutions used to fill in those fractures do not have the same remarkably high heat index that diamonds have.  So, when a jeweler is positioning a diamond into a new piece of jewelry, or even just fixing a banged up old band or what have you, they use a torch.  This torch doesn’t damage diamond at all, but the heat can cause the diamond to ‘sweat out’ the filling material, like a fat man on a treadmill after a night of drinking spiked egg nog.  Hence, the fractures are now visible again and the stone’s clarity grade takes a nosedive.  Just how bad is this?  It’s so bloody awful that the GIA won’t even issue certificates for stones that have undergone fracture filling.  The most aggravating part of this whole mess is that some companies do not inform their customers that the stones they are purchasing are fracture filled.  So there you are, ignorantly walking around with a diamond that’s filled with other stuff.  Please at least attempt to refrain from murdering anyone who sold you one of these fracture filled farces.  

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Laser Drilling

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While this process sounds quite high tech (and a little James Bond-ish), it’s nothing to be that excited about.  It’s another method employed to remove ugly, nasty or just mean spirited inclusions in diamonds.  By drilling to the root of the undesired blotch in the stone (which is just a piece of black carbon that came together as the diamond formed), you expose the inclusion.  The you can pour a little, good ole fashioned sulfuric acid down the hole and burn that droll smudge out of there.  The drill that’s used is, of course, an infrared laser, and the hole that it bores into the stone is microscopic.  Meaning, you can’t see these channels without the aide of a loupe, microscope or psychically charged ‘third eye.’  The dilemma inherent in laser drilled diamonds is that their internal structure has now been messed with.  Who’s to say that the drilling process didn’t corrupt the integrity of the diamond; incipient cracks could be on the cusp of erupting at any time.  The stone may be fine, but there’s just no way to tell.  So as a result, professional diamond buyers are reluctant to acquire such stones – which may vengefully come back to bite them in the tuckus later.  

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Irradiation

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Take a long hard look at your diamond…do you suspect that it’s been violently blasted with neutrons and electrons?  Irradiation is a type of “color enhancement,” and if you have a white diamond, logic would dictate that you probably don’t have to worry too much about this (meaning that the process improves colored diamonds, not that it ameliorates a not so great white diamond’s color grade).  It’s a procedure that utilizes radiation in order to alter colored diamonds at the atomic level, amping their color up from a dull and listless hue to a bright and boisterous shade.  Aside from very rare cases where diamonds can actually undergo irradiation naturally, while still in the ground, stones that have been through this intense tanning bed experience are considered ‘altered,’ ‘treated’ and ‘fake-baked’ to diamond purists.  Translation: valued less.             

 

HPHT

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This abbreviation stands for “High Pressure High Temperature,” and is a procedure that has been riddled with controversy since its inception.  Scientists working at General Electric at the end of the 20th century discovered that they could, more or less, heat and squeeze all the hideous tints out of diamonds, thus making them clear as day.  A bit of an oversimplification, but the overall HTHP operation, which somehow zaps poor color out of white diamonds and also intensifies shades in colored stones, became embroiled in scandal when many of the diamonds that went through this molecular rigamarole were passed off as naturally occurring.  Again, within the milieu of diamond connoisseurs, these rocks just don’t fly as the real deal, and are intrinsically worth significantly less than their organic counterparts.  HPHT stones are given an intaglio on the girdle which demarcates their altered nature, but this can be easily removed, further fueling the ire directed at these augmented diamonds.  

 

Fluorescence  

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In all honesty, this one is a little baffling.  Here is an extensive run down on what fluorescence is and how it can affect your diamond – but the bottom line is that in today’s market, diamonds that exhibit strong fluorescence are unfortunately less desirable.  In the most basic, rudimentary terms, fluorescence is what turns a diamond blue when placed under a black light.  That’s it.  Once in an unfavorably blue moon, a diamond that has strong fluorescence may appear a bit milky when viewed in regular light, but this fickle property of fluorescence is usually just invisible altogether.  The reason why this currently is viewed as a negative is rather up in the air, but if your diamond has fluorescence, you’re up a creek sans a rowing device.   

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Doublet

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This is extremely rare in the diamond world, as it would seem that not even the most disreputable jeweler would try to dupe you with one of these, but stranger things have happened.  This is where the top portion of a diamond (the table) is a real, authentic stone; the bottom (the pavilion) however, is a simulant.  Either C.Z. or quartz or some other damnable fake.  The two parts are glued together and violà; a gem that reads as real when viewed from above, but is a total sham when you look up its rear.    

The only way to know for sure if your diamond has been cursed with any of these dastardly traits is to have it evaluated by a knowledgeable professional.  Thankfully, the expert gemology staff at Diamond Lighthouse is at your disposal.  If you possess a sizable diamond (1 carat and higher) that you’re looking to sell, we can perform a comprehensive test on in, making sure that it is not afflicted with any of the aforementioned natural or man-made maladies.  This evaluation and shipping are both totally free as well.  How’s that for service?  We’ll also find you the absolute best price imaginable for your diamond.  Find out more here

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-Joe Leone 

Miraculous Jewelry Terms (“M”)

Jewelry Phrases beginning with “M” 

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Macaroni – aside from being one of the tastier carbs and an old timey term for being ‘in fashion,’ this also describes a chatelaine that is draped over one’s belt instead of hooked.  The chatelaine, if you recall, is that fancy keychain the ‘Lady of the House,’ or “Big Momma,” wore during the Elizabethan period.

Mallorca Pearls – these are faux pearls, with hearts of glass.  From the Spanish isle which bares their name, these little orbs are created by repeatedly dipping a glass ball into a shiny concoction made of fish scales and oil (aka: ‘smelly stew’ or ‘sea goo’).  The term is now widely used to describe all kinds of fake pearls – and older women named ‘Pearl’ who act phony.

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Manchette – leave it to the French to turn yet another everyday item into a sneakily chic jewelry creation.  This word means “cuff” en Français, hence the manchette is what is commonly known today as a ‘cuff bracelet.’  It looks just like the frilly end of a Victorian lady’s sleeve, and really comes in handy if you simply abhor having cuffs made out of fabric.

Married Jewelry – while you naturally assume that this refers to wedding bands, you naturally are wrong.  This is any type of jewelry piece that embodies one specific style and then is augmented with another add-on piece (which can be from either the same time period/design motif or from another one altogether).  Hence, you have two separate goods that have been ‘married’ together, like Kardshians and athletes.

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Mascaron – is the equivalent of a modern emoji, but the mean/scary ones.  A mascaron is a face, which can be human, animal, a human-animal hybrid, or a goblin/demon.   They are used in architecture on the side of buildings to keep evil spirits away and in jewelry to keep normal people away.

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Meander – this refers to a border, often seen in ancient Greek architecture, that has a repetitious, angular linear pattern.  The Hellenists (or ‘Greek Revivalists’) were fond of this motif, using it in a lot of jewelry items (such as “Greek Key” bracelets) at the turn of the 19th century.  Another term for a meander design is the “running dog,” as it looks like a little Fido trying to eternally catch itself in an M.C. Escherian maze.

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Meershaum – is a whitish, very lightweight clay-esque material that is often used in lieu of ivory (thankfully, for those who deplore ivory usage).  Importing tons of the stuff from Asia, German designers have used meershaum for generations to craft cigarette holders and ornate bowl pipes (thankfully, for those who enjoy smoking…things).  Meershaum sometimes makes a cameo in cameos, once again impersonating cruelly derived ivory.

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Memento Mori – and now for the single most morbid jewelry trend in history thus far.  This phrase translates directly from Latin to “Remember, you must die,” which is quite helpful if you’re the forgetful type.  Oddly popular for over 200 years (from the 1500’s through the 1700’s – and then again with modern day “Goths,” of course, who inundate Hot Topics in malls all over the country), these are rings, pendants and lockets, often with secret compartments, that were fashioned to look like skulls, skeletons and Larry King.

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Memorial Rings – are just what they sound like; rings that are constructed to memorialize or laud a person (ie – the King) or a special event (Macy’s year-end clearance sale).  Often they will have the silhouette of a chap or lady embedded in them, which serves as a creepy reminder that the soul depicted there is always with you.  ALWAYS.

Menuki – are intricately designed metal ornaments that were originally used to make Japanese sword handles look really pretty…right before they killed you.  Menuki became all the rage in the Western world during the end of the 1800’s, in the super throwback Art Nouveau era.

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Micromosaic – this is a form of art that is extremely difficult to achieve, so if someone ever gives you a micromosaic pendant or brooch, just be grateful to the person who spent days putting it together and send them a micro-kiss.  It’s made from tiny glass or enamel parts (called ‘tesserae’) that have a bunch of different hues.  You put it all together in a gold, copper or brass tray to create an image (like an ancient Italian Lite Brite).

Milk and Honey Effect – much like the biblical land of the same name, this is something you strive for when picking out chrysoberyl gemstones.  Don’t recall what those are?  They’re those stones that exhibit the ‘cat eye’ phenomenon; so the M&H effect here is when the feline eye looks like equal parts the sugary goo that bears enjoy and the liquid that cows generously supply our children with.

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Millefiori – speaking of micro mosaics, these are minuscule flower bouquets sometimes found in these miniature works of art.  It’s also a good name for a Bond Girl.

Minaudière – One of the many Van Cleef & Arpels patented items, this is a dainty little clutch designed for women to use to store their make-up, combs and secrets.  The exterior typically features floral, woven designs with little lipstick-protecting hummingbirds and the like on there.

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Mizpah Ring – taken right out of the bible, Mizpah is Hebrew for “Watchtower,” and refers to god watching over man.  Ergo, gold, silver or sometimes brass rings would be engraved with this word (and for jewelers with tiny baby fingers, sometimes the a whole quote from the bible in relation to this).  Not to be confused with a bar mizpah (that’s a tavern where god watches you drink).

Mokume Gane – is the Japanese nomenclature for a technique of lamination that makes metal look like grained wood.  This was used back in the day for Japanese sword blades (possibly so they appeared to be wooden and then opponents would let their guards down?), but today it can be found on all manner of wearable jewelry.

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Mordant – the end of the one’s belt (that doesn’t have the buckle on it) can be affixed with a mordant, which is a metal thingy that helps the belt easily slide through the pant loops.  Some buckles are fancy and are bejeweled and the mordants are set with matching stones.  In jewelry, mordants are mostly used to jazz up bracelet ends.  A common misconception is that Mordants are inhabitants of Mordor.

Moresque – a design style which contains scroll-like shapes, originating from the North Africa.  Renaissance people were really into this look, incorporating it into all kinds of jewelry.  The designs are beautifully complicated, ironically giving rise to the phrase “less is moresque.”

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Mounting on Moor – is a sneaky trick in the diamond world, where one gives the stone a little bit of a ‘tint’ in the pavilion portion, which hides unsightly blemishes inside it.  Like putting a “Kelvin” filter on an unflattering Instagram pic.

Mourning Jewelry – a self-explanatory term, these are jewelry pieces that people would wear when a loved one departed, to show the world they were very sad but still of course cared about fashionable accessories.  Obviously darker materials were employed in making these pieces, such as onyx, black enamels and crystals, jet and in some cases, the actual hair of the mourned individual.  These particular, hair-inclusive jewelry pieces were also known as “please get that away from me.”

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Muff Chain – is a lengthy chain that loops around a lady’s neck, hangs all the way down and clasps her muffler, or muff, which is that fuzzy guy that keeps hands warm.  This was a must-have object during the 1700’s, when people were apparently losing their muffs left and right.

Joe Leone 

10 reasons why you should sell your diamonds IMMEDIATELY

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All across the country, many people can be found who own diamonds.  Some women wear them on the forth finger of their left hand to indicate that you shouldn’t ask them out; others sport large versions of the stones, hanging from their ears, as an alternative to “spacers”; certain gentlemen, who recite lyrical words for a living into microphones, have diamonds embedded into miniature avatars of themselves that hang from gilded chains around their necks.  Then there are the people that have diamonds hidden in their attics, in tiny treasure chests, saving them in the event of a complete economic breakdown where we must resort back to a pre-civilized barter system.  Of all the multitude of the diamond hoarding human classifications, there is one thing that unites them: they all should sell their diamonds ASAP.

Here’s why:

1 – Walking around with valuable pieces of glittering, sparkling glass fragments on your body is a surefire way to draw the attention of criminals looking to make an easy score.  Just look at what happened to Batman’s parents.  Ditch those pricey pieces post haste, before you become the prime target for a malicious mugging/horrendous hugging.  

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2 – In the same way that you become the pièce d’ résistance for professional bandits, you make yourself ready bait for bothersome relatives and deadbeat friends.  They won’t rob you in quite the exact aggressive manner as the aforementioned gem-snatchers, but they will bombard you with nonstop requests for monetary assistance.  The ugly, glittering truth is that they are not even to blame; by wearing diamonds you turn yourself into a walking billboard for ostentatious luxury and arrogant opulence.   

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3 – You work hard every day at your job.  You put in extra hours, you follow up with all business leads that may benefit the company – you even attend the damnable Holiday Party every year with a warm (however forced and obsequious) grin on your face.  Think you’re due for a raise, right?  NOPE.  Not with that huge rock on your finger/ear/nose.  You look like you have too much money already.  Sorry, you can email HR though – who’ll promptly delete your complaint, for all the same gem encrusted reasons. 

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4 – Diamonds are very hard, and in some cases, very sharp.  Now, what do you think happens when you lose weight?  Your digits shrink and your rings become loose.  The harmless activities of every day life can cause your ring to droop down, and when you go to close your hand around a plump orange or send a hilarious (in your mind) tweet – OW!  Your backwards set diamond has just stabbed ye, and it’s off to the E.R. for an afternoon of agony.  

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5 – Let’s paint a similar scenario: you’ve dropped some pounds and all your clothes are now hanging on you.  You casually attempt to hail a cab and – whoosh – your ring goes flying off your slender finger and into the night.  Oops.  You are not even aware of this until later, when you realize you’ve just lost an item that cost thousands upon thousands of greenbacks.  

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6 – You may be grinning to yourself at this point, thinking “Ha!  I never lose weight – in fact, I’ve been steadily gaining girth for years!”  Well, touché.  Oh, you may want to consider this though; those who have amassed extra poundage and have rings that are now permanently stuck on their fingers are at a great risk of losing circulation entirely and, ultimately, needing to have their finger amputated.    Won’t be so funny anymore, when you’re walking around giving people ‘High Fours.’

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7 – Diamonds are forever.  That is, until you can’t find them anymore.  If you happen to fall into the grouping of people who squirrel away your diamonds in remote corners of your cellar, attic or furnace, there may come a day when you are ready to remove said stones and: WAH?  They’re missing!  From actual squirrels (and other pesky varmints) that just love to burrow into tight places and pilfer shiny things to similarly rodential children and grabby roof shingle repairmen, there’s a whole host of creatures/people who can get to your gems before you do.  Sell those rocks before they get their grubby little mitts on them first.  

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8 – For every old diamond that doesn’t get sold, a “new” diamond must be excavated from the ground to meet diamond consumer demand.  This endless stream of terrestrial destruction has anything but a positive impact on the environment; in fact, it wreaks havoc on certain sensitive ecosystems, which can ultimately lead to the decimation of endangered species and worldwide environmental devastation.  So, essentially, every time you don’t sell your old diamonds, the air we breathe becomes poisonous and a baby seal dies. 

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9 – Owning a diamond engagement ring leads to divorce.  Statistics show that out of all divorced couples, over 80% of them had a diamond engagement ring exchanged (well, this documentation refers to ‘married coules,’ but all divorced couples were married at one time, so whatever).  The numbers don’t lie.  Sell your diamond engagement ring right now, or the chances are highly in favor that you will get divorced.  Already divorced?  Well, there you have it then.  Best to sell any residual diamonds before they can do any more damage.  

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10 – Finally, we have the most substantial (and serious) reason.  While diamond demand has not waned dramatically in the U.S., international diamond prices have seen a significant downward spiral.  This is no passing trend; it’s just the way things are.  Take a gander at what some of these news sources have to say on the matter: Forbes, Time, MarketWatch.  The smartest economic decision you can make in this very moment is to sell your diamonds now, before things get exponentially worse.  The good news here is that at Diamond Lighthouse we can help you recover the absolute highest value for your diamond jewelry (typically any piece that features a diamond 1 carat and higher).  Our unrivaled open bidding platform will get you the best price for your diamond, every single time.  Find out more, right…NOW!  

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-Joe Leone

Luscious Jewelry Terms

Starting with “L”

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Labradorescence – here we have an extraordinarily fancy way of saying that a stone looks blue (as in the color, not melancholic).  Specifically, this occurs with the gem labradorite, and in some very rare instances, in Labrador retrievers.

Lace Ring – this is a ring mounting type where the sides are constructed of an open webbing, which obviously resembles the material that fancy underwear is made out of.

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Lambrequin – while this sounds like it is the odd lovechild of a lamb and a mannequin, it actually refers to little ornamental pieces that look like woven fabric.  Worn by fancy soldiers of yesteryear, this arty thing was commonly found in one’s coat of arms.

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Lapidary – this is the name given to those who cut, polish, slice and dice gemstones and dense minerals (except diamonds, of course – those who deal solely with diamonds are called “diamantaires,” and wouldn’t sully their fastidious fingers with lesser gems).  Some lapidaries also can carve cameos, thereby making them mini sculptors (take that, diamond snobs!)

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Lathe – is something that modern jewelers thank the high heavens for each day.  It’s a sophisticated machine that basically does all of the essential jeweler tasks in one, such as grinding, milling, drilling, (thrilling!), and oh so much more.

Latten – this is a material that is comprised of copper and other, less expensive metals (it’s an alloy).  Highly popular throughout the entire Medieval period (5th through 15th centuries), latten could easily be shaped into words and symbols on jewelry, like latin phrases and ‘yo momma’ jokes.  Most signet rings created during this time were made of latten (those are the rings you would stick in wax to leave your seal on letters, like an ancient @handle.)

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Lava Jewelry – a very specific type of jewelry endemic to the ruins of Pompeii, Italy.  Travelers venturing to Pompeii during the 17th century, seeking to unearth more of the location’s petrified secrets, would return home with souvenir jewelry made out of the lava/mineral debris from the actual site.  These would often be in the form of dirt and clay-colored cameos, carved to resemble some of the lovely lost Roman souls.

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Lavallière – a delicate link chain that culminates in a hanging pendant (typically featuring a pearly pearl).  Turn of the 20th century kids couldn’t wait to get their hands on these.  The necklace type takes its nomenclature from the allegedly breathtaking Louise Françoise de La Baume Le Blanc, who not only possesses an insanely long name, but was the number one side chick of Louis XIV (hey, in 17th century France this was something to be proud of).  She was also the ‘Duchesse de La Vallière’ (hence the necklace name…finally).

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Lazo – no, not the term for a sloth-like person in Spanish, this actually means “bow” en Español, and is employed when describing earrings that have some sort of design at the top, a bow in the middle and then a ‘drop,’ or hanging, jewel or other metal piece.  The phrase eventually morphed to include brooches that have a ribbon motif.

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Leontine – pocket watches in Spain would simply crash to the floor (el piso) without the aid of a leontine, the chain that connects the watch to one’s pocket (via a little clasp).  Often constructed with a flourish (hanging gold tassels and the like), leontines were the bold precursor to wallet chains, donned primarily by mid-90’s posers.

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Limoges Enamel – this is a precise form of enameling that put Limoges, France on the map.  Conceived during the 1400’s, this enameling technique uses a metal material as the canvas to which a heavy enamel layer is applied, and then a clear one over that (really letting the colors ‘pop’).  This artistic practice is used today in nail salons around the world.

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Liquid Silver – much like the body of the ferociously undulating Terminator first introduced in Terminator 2: Judgement Day, liquid silver seductively flows like a shiny river of metal.  It’s the name given to sterling silver beads, which when polished to a fiery sheen and strung tightly together, simply ooze opulence and stream through the night.

Lobster Claw – many of you may have a lobster claw dangling from your body right at this moment and you don’t even know it.  Before you reach for the lemon and butter, this is just a kind of clasp that at lot of necklaces and bracelets use.  It’s fun to open it and pinch your friends with.

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Lorgnette – you’ve seen plenty of fancy ladies of the past using lorgnettes; they are those glasses that are held up to the face with a precious metal handle (not an adorably precocious one; ‘precious’ here meaning one that is made of gold or silver, etc.)  Lorgnette rose to prominence during the tail end of the 19th century and stayed in fashion throughout the daring Art Deco era.  Can be used today in lieu of Google glasses.

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Lost Wax Casting – in French it’s “cire perdue,” but in any language it means the same thing; you make a wax mold of some sort, pour hot liquid metal in there and then burn the wax away, leaving you with a newly cast metal, primed for a good ole polishin’.  And yes, it also sounds like the casting session to the mysterious, hit ABC series “Lost Wax.”

Lover’s Eye Miniature – let’s take a look see at this jewelry concept, which will undoubtedly go down as one of the creepiest in history.  It’s basically a little pin, pendant, brooch or ring encased painting that your lover gives to you.  Depicted there, is their very own eye, symbolically watching over (aka ‘stalking’) you at all times.  This trended briefly at the end of the 18th century, however the Lover’s Eyes soon lost favor as people started to accumulate various lovers, and therefore, more eyes to peer at them.  Presumably, they just got freaked out by all the incessant staring.

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Lover’s Knot – way less weird than the previous item, this refers to rings that were crafted to depict two pieces of rope that were tied in a symbolic union.  The ancient Romans used them as betrothal rings; contemporary grooms use them for the same thing…when they are trying to come up with clever ways to not have to buy a diamond.

Luckenbooth Brooch – you can take their land, but you can never take their brooches.  These charming Scottish pins are designed to look like a heart (or two hearts).  They were first made during the Middle Ages and became fashionable during the 1800s.  This term can also be applied when you happen to luck into a booth in a restaurant.

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Lunula – what’s not to love about the Bronze Age?  That’s where we got this moon-shaped necklace from, which can be made from any material but often shows up in gold or…bronze.  Lunulas are not just beautifully designed creations that evoke images of nighttime illumination and revelry, they also have a really fun name to say out loud.

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-Joe Leone