Not pushing your buttons Jim. This is for real, lol. Goldstone, lol, come on the Monks have to make money somehow!
The latest I have been seeing all over Etsy is Goldstone now being sold as natural sandstone with copper in it, OMG!!
I actually like Girasol Quartz truthfully. I don't classify it in the low end but that is my opinion. Any natural stone with a phenomena like chatoyancy, asterism, etc. is OK in my book! Neutral about them treating to lemon variety, no big deal since all the lemon stuff is irradiated anyways. The amethyst I am torn between though, the colors are amazing and very reminiscent of the old top end stuff but with a little bit of a glow, and with the inclusions that cause the asterisms it makes it a super simple ID of being natural and not lab created, which is a bonus in my book. Top color amethyst was never a low end stone really until the advent of the synthetic variety that could not be detected except by expensive lab testing, then amethyst and all quartz gemstones bottomed out in price and became a lower end stone. But prior to that good color amethyst demanded great prices as did good color citrine even! While this material is treated, it is done so by a permanent and quite accepted treatment now, and maybe it will bring amethyst back up into more of a stone it was in yester years.I have always loved top color amethyst like the stuff from Uruguay, AZ, GA, and even some in NC.
I think the main reason we all keep hearing the "I can't afford the good stuff" is largely in part to all the lies and misinformation the TV jewelry shows, Ebay sellers, and Joe & Suzie Homemaker(the ones that could care less about legitimately representing their wares). Many people think that quality gemstone and jewelry sellers are just ripping them off and price gouging them. I get emails about it to this site almost daily! Always hearing the same thing, "why should I buy it from them when I can buy it wholesale on Ebay or TV Shows, the same places they buy their stuff!?" They have this in their heads because all these Ebay sellers and TV Show sellers make these BS statements a few thousand times per day in their ads and shows! They've been taught that windows are no big deal and do not make a cut bad, they've been taught that there is no real difference between treated and untreated gemstones. Heck a certain show constantly pushes glass composite rubies as fracture filled and state how it is just used to fill surface stuff and nothing more and that it does NOT have any affect on durability nor value of the gemstone! You would be surprised on how many people still think that "you can't say it on TV if it is not true!" and that people couldn't sell it if it was fake! Then to top it off even more you have these Appraisers
out there all over, at least in this area they are, with no education, NOT Gemologists, at most a GIA A.J.P. and pretending to be a GG, and so on doing these outrageous appraisals on poorly cut junk and classifying it as higher end stuff! I mean, just encountered an appraisal the other day here in the local area done by a supposed local appraiser that was on a ruby and in the appraisal called it a ruby then in parenthesis stated it may be synthetic, but still valued it into the thousands of dollars!!!! I mean, WTF!!??
If you can not tell the difference between a synthetic and a natural stone then you shouldn't be doing the job!
Then you have all these chain stores in malls and such using these fly by night supposed Labs to do lab reports on their colored stores and diamonds that mention no treatments even when obvious, grade the diamonds like 2-3 grades higher then they should be, same for colors always a grade or two better, and then slap a retail appraisal value on there of 2-3x the selling price, or even more sometimes!
Consumers have been so misled in this Country and lied too so many times, many do not know good stuff when they even see it, and if they do, they still think that it does NOT demand a premium over the junk they are being sold! Jen just had a client a few days ago who wanted a 1ct natural and untreated ruby, although heated was acceptable if color and clarity were good, and she quoted them a price and they literally laughed at her! Made the statement "You are a rip-off and ridiculous!" to her face, well over the phone to her! Then proceeded to make the statement they could buy it on TV for a fraction of that cost, mentioning Maheleo as they said it! When Jen tried to explain that she has examined these stones before, even recently, and they were largely glass and not just ruby and that is why the costs were so low, they said she was just lying and hung up on her! I mean come one, do you really think you can buy top quality rubies for like $20-$25/ct!!!??
Now, granted, some stating they can't afford it is true. At least in this State it is. And even tax time is not going to make a difference because tax refunds are needed to pay for all the other BS. They doubled tax rates on us two years in a row and are doubling or tripling them again this year they said. Not to mention the State passed all kinds of BS allowing insurance companies all kinds of BS and they doubled premiums and copays but cut coverage almost in half! Then the Governor did away with the health insurance for lower income working families and left 40,000+ families without any insurance! And now because of all the insurance company freedoms and such the hospitals and doctors all want their money up front and no longer accept the insurance, so you have to pay out of pocket at the time of service and then seek reimbursement from your insurance. The problem there is they dictate what can be charged for procedures and regardless of what the medical place charged you you will only get back what the Insurance company says is a proper charge! The Governor that just lost his office, on his way out, accidentally
overlooked the regulatory laws on electric companies keeping rates affordable and allowed them to expire. Well, now the electric companies have decided they need to make up for lost revenue and even put TV ads out informing people that the average bill will be doubling in cost this year! They are shutting down schools, firing teachers left and right, cutting school days down less hours, proposing a 4 day school week instead of 5 day, cut kindergarten and preschool funding, and so on. So now the school will be jacking up property taxes as well! Our State is literally screwed and the important government officials aren't going to give up anything, heck, they even took huge raises!!! Many people are fleeing the ship here in PA! In our area literally about every third house is up for sale because folks can not afford all the raised taxes, costs, and now the utility caps being allowed to expire. So, in some areas, the not being able to afford it excuse is legitimate, sadly. In fact, most all folks around here are selling their real
jewelry, not buying anything new! Jen probably gets at least 10 calls per day of folks trying to sell their jewelry, the problem is, most of it turns out to be TV show garbage and they are asking more then they paid for it, rofl!
I am sure it is much different in many other areas, and similar in many as well.
IMHO, regulations need to be put into place to make this trade be a properly licensed one like all other skilled trades are as well as start enforcing the FTC laws and other laws on the books.
At the very least just actively enforce the FTC Guidelines!! Put policies in place like a 3-strike policy, where when a store/seller/vendor has had a violation for a third time that they have their business license suspended for at least 30 days, and so on until they just pull their licensing permanently! Enforce mandatory jail sentences for these vendors who continuously and knowingly misrepresent their wares and rip off the consumer, TV Shows are a prime example of such! A consumer should NOT have to worry about having to file a lawsuit on a vendor down the road because they were ripped off. They shouldn't have to worry about becoming ripped off by national chains, TV Shows, and larger businesses, nor even smaller ones. But you know there is a serious problem when Vendors on National TV are blatantly allowed to lie, cheat, and steal from consumers with no fear of any repercussion really!
I flipped through the TV last night and early this morning due to not being able to sleep because of the pain and boredom being bed ridden for past couple days, and came across three different TV shows selling gemstones and/or jewelry, and within 20mins of each they misrepresented numerous items!! And this was with supposed Gemologists sitting beside them that would have known the difference/truth if they were worth a darn! One the other day was even being condoned by a well known organization/group and I could not believe they would be a part of defrauding the consumers/general public like they were! Selling obviously treated pieces, since they do not exist in nature as they were, without ever mentioning that they were treated verbally nor on the screen with text, not even in fine print!
KNOWINGLY selling glass composites as barely treated gemstones or heated ones is technically a criminal offense in many States, and it should be a criminal offense! I mean come one, a business can be shut down and fined, and the owner even imprisoned now for simply hiring an illegal, so why should folks be able to knowingly lie, cheat, misrepresent, and steal from consumers, yet still be allowed to continue to do business!!!???!!
Something is seriously wrong with this Country!