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A trip to the city of gemstones: Idar-Oberstein - Rareté Studios

A trip to the city of gemstones: Idar-Oberstein

Last week was a special week as it marked our very first press trip to Idar-Oberstein, a small town in West Germany world renowned for its colored gemstone industry and origin of Rareté Studios jewelry.

We invited Sharon Berkal, founder and chief editor of the blogazine Haus Glanz, to join us on a tour behind the scenes of the traditional jewelry and gemstone manufacturing - a craft that only a few master on the level that the jewelry experts in Idar-Oberstein do.

We went on a journey from the initial design of our solid gold letter beads all the way to the final BELONGING Bracelet. As simple as a little letter bead gold nugget may look, the time, expertise and number of people involved in the design and the making of it is pretty significant.

We looked into the steps of the making of our BELONGING Bracelet

  1. Development of our letter beads with the help of Computer Aided Design and 3D Printing enabled us to achieve the perfect shape and size that mimics the acrylic pearls we know from our childhood.

  2. Our gold casting is done with 18K solid gold for a rich gold color and lasting quality materials. We were able to follow along the casting process and the heavy machinery, heat and know-how that is needed to get a perfect result.

  3. Polishing and cleaning of each letter bead requires several different instruments to achieve a super glossy finish. Our world-class master goldsmith takes up to one hour of handwork to complete each letter bead to perfection.

  4. The faceting of each gemstone brings out the uniqueness and sparkle of every gem. We were able to take a look over the shoulder of some of the most talented gemstone cutters at the family-run gem lapidary and trading company HC Arnoldi in Kirschweiler.

  5. The design of each BELONGING bracelet with a unique composition of colored gemstones in different shapes and sizes is an expression of the perfect imperfections of nature.
Finally, we shared our design philosophy of creating and curating fine jewelry that is high-end, locally made, responsible and designed for people with a special taste.
A little bit of History

Gemstone mining in Idar-Oberstein started in the 15th century with the discovery of Quarz in the region of the Hunsrück Mountain Range. With that the gemstone manufacturing industry got its start and grinding workshops were established along the Idar-River. With first gemstone discoveries in Brazil by Idar-Obersteiners the mining came to an end in the middle of the 19th century and the import of gems from all over the world took over. Today, Steinkaulenberg is the only gemstone mine in Europe that is open to the public. We got an insight into how people used to work their way through the rock with rudimentary tools in search for the precious gemstones.

Today you can admire every known gemstone in the world in the German Gemstone Museum in Idar-Oberstein, as well as some of the most fascinating gemstone creations. It’s a literal treasure box for every gemstone and jewelry lover and always worth a visit.

Read more about the trip to the city of Gems on Haus Glanz

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