Boulder opals are the rarest of all natural opal varieties, comprising only 2% of Australia's total opal population. In terms of value, they are considered second only to the popular Black Opal. The name "Boulder Opal" originates from their natural formation, where they are embedded into large ironstone boulders, often retaining part of their ironstone matrix when mined. Their unique appearance includes vibrant flashes of color enhanced by the ironstone matrix, which often appears as a black, brown, or grey base below the iridescent hues. Historically, opals were believed to bring good luck when given as a gift. In the modern day, they continue to be adored worldwide and are one of the most desirable stones used in fine jewelry!
A beautiful and very unusual boulder opal bead necklace from the Art Deco (ca1920s) era! This stunning piece is comprised of graduating boulder opal beads, which alternate with faceted rock quartz crystal spacers. The smoothly polished opal beads are quite unique, displaying an array of iridescent colors that are contained within an iron matrix base. The iridescent properties appear as swirls of shimmery color within the surrounding deep brown matrix, creating quite an eye-catching contrast. The beads are hand strung on clear wire, and meet at an ornately textured 14kt yellow gold push clasp in the back and there is a safety chain for added security. When worn, the necklace drapes beautifully below the neckline. Versatile in its simplicity, it would make a stylish addition to any jewelry collection!
Measurements: The necklace measures approximately 16.25" in total length. The opal beads graduate in size, with the largest center bead measuring mm in size, and the smallest beads at the ends measuring 4.75mm each.
Condition: The overall condition of the necklace is excellent. Besides normal surface wear, there is no apparent damage to any of the opal beads or rock quartz crystal spacers, all of which are intact and securely strung. The gold push clasp is secure and in good working condition.