Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Lorraine DePasque on Opal Jewelry

Switching from “Off” to “On” with Opal [excerpt*]

For well over a year, I’ve been thinking about opals—not Mexican fire opals, but all the others: precious white and black, Ethiopian and Australian, honey and seascape, and those cool pattern-y ones like jelly, matrix, and harlequin. Truthfully, until the past year-and-a-half-or-so, I hadn’t been thinking much about opals. For me, they just never ranked high up there as a personal style choice.
And, yes, I realize some people aren’t happy I’m saying that, but we all have our favorite gems, and then others we’re more lukewarm about. (Don’t we?) Maybe Sir Walter Scott’s 1929 novel, “Anne of Geierstein,” in which he wrote about opal as bringing bad luck to its owner, had something to do with it? Although probably not, as I’ve never been particularly superstitious.

Anyhow, of late, my position on opals has changed. Apparently, as more contemporary designers over the past year have embraced opals, I have, too. I’m fairly certain that the refreshing ways they’re working this “old” stone into jewelry are what’s made me take a closer look...
At Couture, I was impressed with Pamela Froman’s new designs based on October’s birthstone. For as long as I can remember, Froman’s been a fan of opals of all varieties, and she’s been working with a lot of Ethiopian opals, especially in her one-of-a-kinds. I especially love what she’s doing with opal matrix: taking the unusual, often complex pattern of an opal matrix and making it visually complementary to the unusual metalworking that’s signature to her jewelry. (Truly, it’s art, if ever I saw it.)

"Scroll Crush Mommy Earrings" 18k Pink & Yellow Crushed Gold, featuring unique Australian Matrix Opal briolettes, with sparkling diamond accents; "Mommy" means the Scroll Studs can be worn without the drops.

*This is an excerpt from the full article by Lorraine, which originally appeared on's Shine Blog.  


  1. Thanks a lot for the time and energy that you've been putting into writing your article. I leave comments not too often, but sometimes it just needs to be said. Cheers!

  2. Undoubtedly, Jewelry is the best ornaments that makes more attractive and gorgeous. Specially the earring in your post and it looks great. I really love the design and color combination. Simply brilliant post. Thanks.

  3. I love the well as the color...nice gold color combination on dark stones...perfect!


  4. I've been meaning to write and thank you for posting this excerpt from my article--the jewelry and fashion shows have just kept me so busy these last few months. Anyhow,for all of you who read this blog and are fans of Pamela Froman jewelry, I'd like to add one thing: My career has afforded me the unique opportunity to view thousands of jewelry collections from designers all over the world and, having said that, Pamela Froman's pieces are truly among those that should be considered not only fashionable but also "collectibles." And in these uncertain economic times, buying COLLECTIBLE fashionable jewelry is such a sensible purchase--something I tell my husband all the time! Best wishes for a wonderful holiday season, everyone! Lorraine