Texture – Annette Piper

18 07 2008

Have you ever looked closely at gemstones?   They are like small worlds with their own character and each is unique in its patterns, shape and internal beauty.   Whilst texture often only relates to the ‘feel’ I can often get the effect of texture from the look of a stone.

The pattern of the stone, perhaps it is orbicular, banded or variegated.   The stone could be transparent, translucent or opaque.  The colour may be solid or shaded.  All of these factors build to a visual texture of depth even though you know the actual surface will be cool and smooth.   This ability makes jewellery very tactile.  People want to FEEL it.


There are stones that do have a different surface texture of course.  Lava, for example is aerated and pitted.   Some jaspers feel almost like cold velvet.   Tumbled stones are smooth but may have pits and bumps across their surface.   Faceted stones are often hard and almost sharp along their edges.   Pearls and organic gemstones such as amber and shell, have beautiful surface textures caused directly by nature, even though they may be more fully revealed by man’s intervention.


Adding levels of textural interest into jewellery is possible by mixing the smooth with rough, the dark with the light, the patterns with the plain, lustrous with matte.   Be adventurous and experiment – you never know what brilliant amalgamation could emerge.


Textural contrast - matte jasper with lustrous pearls

Textural contrast - matte jasper with lustrous pearls




3 responses

18 07 2008

I get the texture of a stone too…it’s like fabric only deeper and much more rich.
I love the piece you used to illustrate contrast.

19 07 2008

I feel that way about smalti, which are akin stone, and stained glass shards.
I sometimes wish I could get people to stop and really look at just one tiny small piece – and truly see it.

22 07 2008

Don’t you just love all the texture possibilities in jewelry? Ask Susan Sheehan about her pearls fantasy. 🙂

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