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Gemstones and Minerals and Things

I use several non-metal elements in many of my belt buckle designs. Here is some information about the most common materials that you will see on these pages. If you would like to know more, just contact me.


Yellow jade

Yellow jade makes a perfect sun for buckle designs such as The Sundance Kid.

The largest sources of yellow jade are Alaska and British Columbia.

Jade, "yu" in Chinese, means "the most beautiful stone." It was a royal gem in the early dynasties of Ancient China, held in high regard over other precious metals such as gold and silver. The Chinese had a proverb that said: "gold is estimable, jade is priceless."

Properties associated with yellow jade include: wisdom, tranquility, protection from harm, good fortune, friendship, loyalty, and longevity.



I use sunstone for The Crab Crusher because it imitates a sparkle brown flats crab.

This particular sunstone is a variety known as Oregon sunstone, found in Harney County and Lake County, and it contains inclusions of copper crystals.

Sunstone was believed to carry the energy of Ra, the sun god, whose energy brings all potential life from within the Earth.

Properties associated with sunstone include: leadership, personal power, freedom, and independence. Reflecting the qualities of light, it brings openness, benevolence and warmth, strength, mental clarity.



Clearly, Miss Ruby Bone is thinking about eating a red shrimp.

Ruby is a tough and durable gem, and the only natural gemstone harder than a ruby is a diamond.

Only experts can distinguish between natural and lab-created rubies. The rubies that I use are grown for 2 years in a gem laboratory. They are identical to naturally occurring rubies, except that they are flawless. Ruby was first synthesized in 1902 by a technic known as the Verneuil process.

Rubies (both naturally formed and lab-created) are highly prized crystals for use in watchmaking, medical instruments, and lasers for microscopic surgery.

Ruby has been held to be an aphrodisiac, helping focus energy that sharpens the mind, bringing a heightened awareness, improving concentration, and promoting a courageous attitude.



The Damsel in Distress design shows a trout that is about to eat a turquoise damsel fly.

This brilliant blue turquoise comes from the Sleeping Beauty mine in Arizona. The mine is now closed. As a result, this turquoise is becoming rare, and expensive.


Spiny oyster

A piece of spiny oyster is the perfect and natural focus for my tailing redfish design.

These spondylids occur along the North American coasts, as far north as North Carolina on the Atlantic Coast, and northwestern Mexico on the Pacific Coast. The orange spiny oyster that I use can be found in shallow to moderately deep waters where snorkelers and scuba divers harvest them.

American indian artists commonly use this oyster shell when they make inlay jewelry. Spiny Oyster is valued for its hard, outer shell (as well as its interior meat). The shell, known as aragonite, consists of calcium carbonate arranged in a crystal lattice orthorhombic system, meaning that there are three unequal axes at right angles to each other, with needle-like (acicular) crystals, giving it a spiny, branched appearance.



Deep blue, serene, and bold, all at the same time.

Since the 7th millennium BC, lapis has been prized for its intense color. Mined primarily in northeast Afghanistan and Pakistan, it has been used in jewelry making, including the funeral mask of King Tutankhamum.



 Mother of Pearl




Neolithic Age Bird Point Arrowhead

I buy bird point arrowheads from an arrowhead collector in West Virginia. He saves the best and smallest for me to use in crafting my buckles.

These arrowheads are 5,000-to-10,000 years old, and most of them are chipped because they were shot at game.