What a gem! Exhibition shows many 'facets' of lapidary
ANYONE interested in gemstones, crystals, minerals and fossils will be well advised to visit the annual Gold Coast Lapidary Club Gem, Craft and Jewellery Show on Saturday, June 30.
The club is well equipped to showcase the many "facets" of the popular hobby.
Leigh Connelly has been a member for 15 years, and says the show is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the not-for-profit organisation.
"It's a way for the club to generate income," he said.
"We generally have between 500 and 1200 people come through, depending on the weather."
Traders on site will showcase the latest in lapidary equipment, while jewellery, natural rock and crystals will be for sale.
Members will demonstrate silversmithing, cutting and polishing in the workshop, and competitions for open and novice classes will be held.
Items for sale will include gemstones like sapphires, topaz, citrine, zircon, quartz and opal.
Leigh joined the club because of an interest in gems and "fossicking", going out into the field.
"I had a background in gold fossicking and metal-detecting," he said.
"The club has field trips, and sometimes we join up with other lapidary clubs.
"Field trips are generally to an area where we know we might get a good result.
"We go to Northern NSW, Glen Innes, Inverell, Stanthorpe and far north Queensland.
"I was down in NSW a couple of years ago and I found a 7.5 carat 'blue on blue' sapphire in the shape of a dog tooth.
"The farmer offered me $1000 a carat uncut.
"I kept it as a brag stone. You find stones that you class as keepers."
The Gold Coast club has membership of around 200.
"We have a variety of ages of members. We've got some 80-year-olds," Leigh said.
Their Craft and Jewellery Show on Saturday, June 30, runs from 8am to 4pm at the club, 80 Pacific Ave, Miami. Cost is $5 for adults, children under 12 free.
Details at www.goldcoastlapidaryclub.com.au or phone 07 5526 1190.