Malachite Jewelry

Malachite is an interesting gemstone for use in jewelry. It is one of very few gems that is such a brilliant, intense green, and is certainly one of the more affordable gemstone in this color. Malachite is banded with many shades of green, creating interesting color layers and patterns. These patterns present opportunities and challenges for jewelry making and other stone art. Malachite is also a soft gemstone- meaning it scratches easily, a factor which must be given consideration when making or shopping for jewelry.

malachite beads A carved Malachite Bead that Shows its wear..This single malachite bead has been carved very intricately and well. Unfortunately, time and wear have taken their toll, as seen in the rough broken edges of the carving. This bead illustrates the perils that come with a soft gem material like malachite, that is easily scratched.
malachite beads Malachite CameoThis is an antique carving on a malachite gemstone, set in gold and made into a brooch. It sold at a Christies auction house for $12,000.


malachite beads Malachite Drop EarringsHere are elegant earrings featuring malachite drop beads. Notice how the cutter and the jewelry artist make excellent use of the natural color bands of the malachite stone. Imagine, for example, how much less attractive they would be if the color bands were oriented horizontally accross the stone.


malachite beads Is this Malachite?Even from a photo, you can see something different about it. That’s because it’s not actually malachite. These kinds of beads are sold as “simulated” or “immitation,” and are usually made of some kind of dyed composite stone. These are cheaper than malachite, but malachite itself is only a little more expensive, so why buy fake?
malachite beads Lovely Malachite BeadsA nice, typical set of round malachite beads. This necklace is a classic design of very well matched malachite beads. This is a ncie way to wear malachite since it stays protected from sctaching by the double knots in between and by the safety of being around the neck (vs. the wrist or finger that are more active). A malachite bead necklace like this does a great job of showcasing malachite’s best feature: its color. Such a necklace is an affordable alternative to jade or emerald.
malachite beads PerfectThe artist of this malachite cuff did an exquisite job of echoing and incorporating the natural color banded pattern in the malachite. This peice of jewelry demonstrates the importance of working WITH the stone versus trying to get the stone to do what you want.
malachite beads Malachite InlayMalachite inlay in sterling silver is another much-loved way of incorporating malachite in jewelry. In these earrings, the artist let the color bands of the stone run alongside and between the silver setting.
malachite beads Malachite PendantMalachite is perfect for pendants. In a pendant, it is safe from scratches and it is also perfectly positioned to showcase its fascinating patterns and vivid color. A malachite pendant is probably not an “every day item” because the color is so distinct. But it is also for that reason that it is fun: some days you just want to wear green and few other stones can give you as much good green as malachite.
malachite beads Malachite RingThis ring displays the rectangular malachite cabochon as if it was a picture in a frame. It creates a lovely and striking effect. If you wear malachite in a ring like this, you have to be okay with seeing it scratched and scarred after some years of wear.
malachite ring A more Protected Malachite RingIn this gold ring, the bezel setting holding the malachite cabochon is raised slightly. This means that the stone is a little less exposed to the scratching than the previous ring.