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Jewelry Education and Advice

  • How to Pierce your Ears at Home (or if you should)

    Listen, we don’t advocate piercing your ears at home. It’s so easy to get it done professionally and inexpensively at your local mall (or even some tattoo shops) so why risk infection or added pain?

    But we know that some people will roll the dice and try an at-home piercing. This video goes over the basics to keep the process as hygienically sound and safe as possible (but seriously, go get it done professionally!):

  • Why is there a Pineapple on the Wimbledon Trophy?


    No, you can’t wear a trophy around your neck or on your finger, but its made of metal (silver gilt) and certainly makes for a killer adornment.

    So as we say goodbye to a blazingly exciting week at Wimbledon, the oldest and most prestigious professional tennis tournament of the world, let’s take a look at the prize trophy for the men (since women receive a dish).

    Wimbledon_trophy_Benjamí Villoslada i GilThe head of the trophy has a pineapple on the top, which has an interesting and hazy history. According to the Express:

    A spokesperson for the Wimbledon Museum told that there are “very few facts” about the pineapple’s origin, but they believe it dates back to the fruit’s use as a symbol of “honour, welcoming and celebration”.

    The spokesperson said: “In the 17th century pineapples were impossible to grow in the UK and they had to be imported, so being presented with one at a feast was seen as a great compliment.

    “You might have seen pineapples being used on gateposts of stately homes as you travel around the UK. It’s because of their rarity.

    Sure, it still seems odd. Pineapples and tennis? Hmm…well, regardless, it looks awesome on top of one of the most revered trophies in sports history.





  • What exactly is tarnish on your sterling silver jewelry?

    We all know the look of it…and its not pretty. Tarnish makes your jewelry appear slightly discolored and just plain dull. But what is tarnish exactly?

    Well first off, what tarnish isn’t: it’s not the pure metal itself (silver) but the alloys mixed with the pure metal (mainly copper). It’s the copper that reacts to the sulfur and the moisture in the air, causing pieces made of sterling silver to tarnish.

    And its not just moisture that causes silver to tarnish but chemicals like deodorant, hairspray, lotion, etc. that speed up the process.  tarnishes faster in areas with high humidity and air pollution.

    Here’s a simple video that details the process of bringing the shine back to your sterling silver jewelry.

  • How to Recover from a Lost Piece of Jewelry


    Losing a beloved piece of jewelry can be extremely painful, often more painful than one would expect it to be. And as jewelers, we know why: jewelry symbolizes more than gems and metal. That special piece represents deeply held feelings of romance, love, family, loyalty and heritage.

    So when a piece of jewelry is lost, it can have a profound effect on the wearer, often lasting a long period of time, sometimes years or even a lifetime.

    Here are some gems of advice we’ve provided to those who have lost that special piece. Hopefully some of these words can help you on your path:

    What the piece symbolized is always yours. A ring is just a thing. What it represented is yours forever. That piece of lost jewelry symbolized something that surpasses its material presence. Spend some time writing down what that lost piece of jewelry meant to you and reflect on the very real fact that that deep and special meaning is never lost.

    You can’t take it with you. An old adage, indeed…but it bears repeating. There is no material item that stays with you for eternity. Items in one’s life come and go. And at some point, all material items will become no more. It’s the transience of life and its a beautiful thing. Embrace the “come and go” of all life has to offer, including items of meaning.

    Replace (to the best of your ability). No, you’ll never have that pearl bracelet your mother gave you on your wedding day. But you could have a new one made in honor of its meaning to you. This shows how an emotional legacy is encouraged to live on. Nothing will replace the original, we know. But the item in honor of it will have its own special place in your heart.



  • A Planet made of Diamonds!

    Get your tickets here for a heavenly trip to the most magical and mythical destination ever: a planet made of diamonds. Well, before you pack your bags, you may want to know that there isn’t any oxygen on the Planet of Diamonds…but hey, a small price to pay right? The amount of diamond will leave you breathless anyway.

    According to Brilliant Earth:

    Scientists have discovered a planet that they believe is composed mostly of carbon, and is one-third pure diamond!  Discovered in 2004, the planet orbits a nearby star in the Milky Way, and is named “55 Cancri e” (which, in our opinion, is not a sufficiently glamorous name for such an extraordinary planet). Perhaps even more amazing, scientists have discovered a star that is essentially a diamond of ten billion trillion trillion carats.  They named the star Lucy after the Beatles song “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.”

    While our custom design abilities are out of this world, extracting diamond from this planet may be a little out of our skillset!


  • The Hardest Metal for Rings

    With Father’s Day just behind us, we revisit a common question among ring wearers: which ring metal is the toughest? And we get why: when you’re wearing a wedding band on a daily basis (and of course, this applies to women as well), the ring simply must withstand the daily stressors that occur. The interesting part? Many people don’t realize just how much a ring withstands until they wear it.

    So what hard metal is the best choice when it comes to wedding and engagement rings?

    Well if you’re seeking a durable metal that’s not overly expensive, then titanium is a “solid” choice. It’s one of the strongest metals used in jewelry. And its very durable, meaning it could withstand a lifetime of wear. It’s also quite easy to clean.

    If you’re seeking a durable metal that looks amazing, then platinum is your go-to choice. Platinum is a prized metal that keeps it worth and possesses an amazingly elegant and fashionable look and shine. Platinum possesses a silver-white color.

    If it’s strictly durability you seek, then tungsten is the way to go. Perfect for men who work with their hands, tungsten simply will not scratch or bend. It’s about 10x harder than 18k gold and 4x harder than titanium. It is a heavier ring because of its density, so that’s a factor to consider.


  • The Way Light affects your Diamond

    We talk a lot here about “fire” and “brilliance” and “scintillation.” But it doesn’t mean much if the lighting isn’t complimenting your diamond. Consider it like a dance, where two partners (the light and the gem) work together to create the best performance possible.

    A GIA researcher has this to say:

    If you think of a diamond like “a series of mirrors reflecting its environment,” it can help you understand how light and location can change the way your diamond appears. When you look at your diamond, you are also seeing a reflection of the surrounding environment, including yourself.

    You can test this theory yourself:

    Hold the diamond at arm’s length and look at how bright it is and how the pattern of dark and light appears. Now, gradually bring it closer to your eye. By the time it gets very close, the area of dark pattern in the diamond has grown and is much more prominent.

    So when purchasing a diamond, what’s the best way to test its overall appearance? We believe its best to look at it in the type of lighting where you’ll most typically wear it. Ultimately your choice of a diamond is a highly personal choice so there’s no definitive right or wrong. Check out the example below.


    These diamonds display high, moderate and low brightness under fluorescent light. Photos by Eric Welch/GIA
  • The Early History of Chokers


    Degas “Dancer onstage with a bouquet,” circa 1878

    Sure, we see them on the runway but did you know the history of chokers extends way back? That’s right, the simple choker has seen a vast history that keeps it trending to this day. Technically a necklace, you’ll find the choker throughout Chinese, Native American, Indian, and Egyptian cultures.

    Take the French Revolution:

    Women took to wearing red ribbons around their necks to pay homage to those who met their death at the guillotine. The ribbon could be worn around the neck, or another fashion came in the form of an X around the shoulders and back. [Source: Buzzfeed]

    The choker become increasingly popular in the late 1800’s where fashionable ladies, ballerinas (as depicted in the Degas image above) and even prostitutes donned them (a black choker often signified a “lady of the night”).

    Initially chokers were often simple cloth but that morphed into new material such as luxe diamonds, pearls, lace and velvet. They were frequently custommade (which we love!) so they fit just right (because a droopy collar just won’t do).

    Looking for a custom designed choker? Let’s find one that keeps you trendsetting for years to come!

  • Emeralds – Understanding the Hue

    A Trapiche emerald.

    A Trapiche emerald


    St. Hildegard of Bingen, a noted lithologist, once declared, “All the green of nature is concentrated within the Emerald.”

    Each and every gem has its own special personality. Almost like humans, they have expressive traits that tell us about the gem. Emeralds are no different. Birthstone of May, emeralds come in a wide variety of hues.

    According to WikiHow:

    Hue refers to the purity of an emerald’s color, and it is one of key points to consider regarding color quality. Most emeralds have a blue-green tint, while others may have a yellow-green tint. The most valuable have little to no tint, however, and are as pure green as possible.

    This is not to be confused with tone. Tone refers to the darkness or lightness of an emerald. Emeralds span from very light to very dark (with the more precious emeralds fallen on the darker end).

    Emeralds are a powerful gem, heavy with history and meaning. Emeralds “promotes friendship, balance between partners, and is particularly known for providing domestic bliss, contentment and loyalty.” [Source: Crystal Vaults]

    Whatever your gem of choice, we can custom design a piece especially for you!


    Columbian emeralds.

  • Jewelry as an Armor Against Stress?


    We understand the complicated and multi-layered psychological aspects of jewelry. Our clients have deep attachments to the pieces we design, and we get why. When every aspect of a design is imbued with specific meaning and attached to deep feelings of love and commitment, it becomes more than just jewelry.

    This latest New York Times piece postulates that jewelry may even be used as a form of protection against stress.

    Since President Trump’s inauguration in January, Pamela Love has received more requests for pieces from her Dagger jewelry collection than anytime since its introduction almost a decade ago. And Ms. Love, a New York-based designer, has no doubts about why her retailers and social media followers have renewed interest in the fierce-looking, but harmless, miniature daggers dangling from earrings and necklaces.

    “Women want to feel tough,” she said. “They want something that reminds them they are tough, and they want something that shows the world they are tough. It’s not about violence. It’s about feeling strong and protected.”

    Do you agree? Do you wear jewelry as a form of stress relief or protection?

100 Years in Jewells Business

Today, Joseph Schubach builds upon his family's experience and continues the tradition with Joseph Schubach Jewelers, offering both intimate jewelry brokering in his Scottsdale, Arizona showroom and full-service online sales to clients from around the world, where he has maintained that personal customer connection in the virtual world.

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Call Joe, Margie or Jen for expert help at (888) 724-8222