“Vintage” Engagement Rings

Vintage Engagement RingWe’ve finally found a line of “vintage” engagement rings and wedding bands that meet our standards! They are made in 14kt. Precise White gold, which means they start out extremely white in color and stay that way! No rhodium plating is required to keep them looking good. We’ve been using this alloy in our custom pieces for a long time…it’s nice to find a manufacturer who uses it, too. Come check them out!

Cheryl

INTRODUCING…ELMA – GIL!

It’s taken 45 years, but we’ve finally found a designer line of engagement rings that we thought worthy for Urban Jewelers to represent. The rings are made in 18kt. white gold with a polished finish second to none. More importantly, they use diamonds of the highest quality. The result ranks VERY HIGH on the sparkle meter! There are several halo styles, along with the more traditional and those a bit more contemporary. The only thing that would make these engagement rings more spectacular is a diamond from Urban Jewelers! We specialize in diamonds of the best cut, proportion and finish, most with diamond grading reports from GIA (Gemological Institute of America), and with the clarity and color of your choosing. Also, from right here on our home page, you can click the “Search Diamonds” icon in the upper right corner, select what you”re looking for and see for yourself some of what we have. Best of all, you look at it BEFORE you decide to buy.

Elma Gil rings can be seen on The Knot and in national bridal magazines. But, better than that, they can be seen at Urban Jewelers, smack dab in the middle of Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor!

And don’t forget, when you buy an engagement ring and a loose diamond from us, you are entitled to a FREE man’s wedding band!

Cheryl

I’m bloggin’, baby!!

It’s hard to believe that we’re well into the 13th year of the new millennium. We’ve survived Y2K, 9-11, the collapse of Wall Street, the near-bankruptcy of two of the domestic auto-makers and most recently, the end of the world this past December. It’s been quite a ride, but here we are, on the other side of it all.

It’s also been a fast 25 years for us, Urban Jewelers, in downtown Ann Arbor. We opened our current location in May of 1988, and much has changed down here since then. Many of the businesses are gone, among them Kline’s, Fiegel’s, Ann Arbor Clothing and Lucky Drugs. Others have relocated, like Mast Shoes, Sixteen Hand, Renaissance, Four Directions and Deluxe Drapery (twice!). I can’t even begin to recall the changes to the restaurant scene…I’d need a couple of pages for that!!

So…is there anything in downtown Ann Arbor that is the same as it was, 25 years ago? Well, yes there is. A few of us have been able to hang on for the wild ride the economy has put us through…and come out strong! I’m proud to say that Urban Jewelers is among those survivors! Oh, we’ve made subtle changes, like painting the inside and out of the building, new carpeting, LED lighting…mostly cosmetic things. But the things that really matter, both to you and to us, haven’t changed at all. For example, our core staff…four of the five who were with us 25 years ago are still with us (the fifth being my dear father-in-law, who passed away in 2009). Our business principles, our level of professional yet personal service and knowledge and love of what we do…you know…the really important stuff…none of that has changed!

That’s all fine and good, but without you, our loyal clients (many of whom have become personal friends), we’d have gone the way of the dinosaur, Jiffy Pop and S & H Green Stamps! So to all of you, we say thanks for 45 great years, the last 25 here in downtown A2. And to those of you who haven’t a clue as to what I’m talking about, what are you waiting for??? Get in here and check us out!

Cheryl

January Birthstone

Garnet

Garnet1The name garnet comes from the Latin word granatus, which means “seedlike” or “having many seeds”. This comes from the resemblance the garnet crystals have to pomegranate seeds. This gemstone is rich in lore and history. Red garnets were thought to stop bleeding and cure inflammation. They were also believed to have the powers to smooth discord between enemies and to prevent bloodshed. However, Asian and North American tribes used them as bullets, believing that their rich, glowing color might caus deadlier wounds. Now, garnet is considered the gem of faith, constancy and truth.

Garnet2When most of us think of garnet, we think of the red to reddish-brown stone described above. However, those with a January birthday may prefer a tsavorite or demantoid garnet, which are both green. There is also rhodolite garnet, which has a rosy pink to reddish purple color. Garnet also comes in yellow, brown and orange variations. All of these possibilities, along with its’ affordability, make the garnet a very desirable gemstone…even if your birthday isn’t in January!

Garnet3As always, outstanding examples of this incredible gemstones in one-of-a-kind settings or settings custom made to your specifications are available and awaiting you here at URBAN JEWELERS.  Come take a look!

September Birthstone

Sapphire

 

sapphirePeople born during the month of September are fortunate to have sapphire as their birthstone. It belongs to the family of minerals known as corundum, which is second only to diamond in hardness. Not only is sapphire a durable gemstone, it is also very beautiful. While all red corundum goes by the name ruby, corundum of all other colors is called sapphire. The most popular among these is the cornflower blue sapphire, which is Indian in origin. Closer to home, Montana produces sapphire of an attractive metallic blue. There are also various other colors of sapphire, including pink, green, yellow and orange. There is even a colorless sapphire.

9_2The legends behind sapphire are many. Kings in ancient times believed it protected them from harm and envy. The Persians believed that the earth rested on a great sapphire, the color of which was reflected to give the sky its blue color. It was also the symbol of truth and constancy.

Ring36-01In addition to being September’s birthstone, sapphire is also the recommended gem for couples celebrating their 5th and 45th wedding anniversaries, perhaps because of its reputed link to emotions such as harmony, friendship and loyalty.

Outstanding examples of this incredible gemstone, in a complete rainbow of colors, is available and awaiting you here at URBAN JEWELERS. Come take a look!

December Birthstone

Blue Zircon

During the Victorian period, zircon may have gained a considerable amount of recognition as a stand-in for diamond, but it certainly has enough favorable characteristics to be a lovely gem in its own right.  In fact, zircon has more fire than diamond and, although it is generally perceived to be a colorless stone, it occurs in a rainbow of colors.

The most preferred among these is blue, the birthstone for December. Those who are born during this month may be interested to know that zircon was once widely believed to provide its wearer with wisdom, honor and riches.

bs19As if these conferred benefits were not enough, those who wear this doubly-refractive gemstone will be rewarded with a sparkling piece of jewelry!

Other acceptable December birthstones are lapis lazuli and turquoise.

blue-zircon-ring-q1beh12oAs always, outstanding examples of these incredible gemstones in one-of-a-kind settings are available and awaiting you here at URBAN JEWELERS.  Come take a look!

November Birthstone

Topaz

The primary birthstone for November, is often confused with citrine, the alternative November birthstone. Both topaz and citrine were found on an island in the Mediterranean called Topazios in ancient times. Since these two gemstones were similar in color, although not in size or form, they were often mistaken for one another. The most common topaz colors are brown, yellow, yellow-gold, and orange, all of which are similar to the shades of citrine. The finest reddish-orange topaz, called Imperial topaz, can resemble exceptional

imperial topazPadparadscha sapphire, which is the most valuable and desirable type of sapphire. Oranges, reds, and pinks are the rarest topaz colors. Light green, purple-red, and colorless varieties of topaz are easily mistaken for other gemstones.

Throughout its history, topaz held the distinction of being the gemstone with the widest range of curative powers. Among other attributes, topaz was used to promote wisdom, which is probably why the custom in ancient times was to give topaz rings to heads of state, diplomats, and royalty.

Pendant38-01Outstanding examples of this incredible gemstone, in a complete rainbow of colors, is available in custom made one-of-a-kind settings and awaiting you here at URBAN JEWELERS. Come take a look!

October Birthstone

Opal

opalThe birthstone for October, was long known as the Wish Stone because it was supposed to grant wishes and personal happiness. The most common and affordable variety of opal is called milky opal, or white opal, because it shows play-of-color against a white, translucent to semi-translucent background. Colors may show as patches (“broadflash”) or tiny “pinpoints” and are usually light and bright pinks and greens.

Jelly opals and crystal opals are transparent to semi-transparent. Their play-of-color is a subtle sheen of color dancing through the gem, rather than color patches. The most valuable opals are black or gem bright colors against a dark, translucent to opaque background.

Earring Urban Jewelers in Ann Arbor, MIAn Interesting Alternative

Opal may be the birthstone for October, but tourmaline is often presented as an alternative birthstone for the month. To some, red-and-green tourmaline may provide a reminder that October is the month in which the leaves turn from green to red. Tourmaline’s versatility does not stop there. This most versatile gemstone is available in arrangements.

pendant04-01The so-called “watermelon” tourmaline looks much like fruit that lends its name, with red in the center and a green outer coating that somewhat resembles a rind. To top that, a tri-colored tourmaline is one-third blue, one-third green, and one-third yet another color.

Outstanding examples of this incredible gemstone, in a complete rainbow of colors, is available and awaiting you here at URBAN JEWELERS. Come take a look!

August Birthstone

Peridot

Peridot01Peridot (PAIR-uh-doe) is the birthstone of those fortunate enough to have been born in the month of August. The Romans referred to this green gemstone, the gem form of the mineral olivine, as the “evening emerald”. This references the fact that its green color did not darken at night but was clearly visible by lamplight.

Peridot02Curiously, the Egyptians considered peridot the “gem of the sun”, even though they mined it at night, because it was not easily spotted during the day. Peridot was also thought to have various powers, one of them being a talisman when it was set in gold. It was also strung on donkey hair and tied around the left arm to ward off evil spirits. If held under the tongue, the stone was thought to lessen thirst during a fever.

peridot-ringIf you remember peridot as being a rather unattractive, yellowish-green color, you need to look again! The newer finds are producing stones with vivid, lime-green color, with no olive tones. Peridot wears fairly well, with a hardness of 6.5 to 7. It is considered an affordable gemstone, even in its abundant larger sizes. The world’s largest recorded, cut peridot is 319 carats (from Burma) which you can see in the Smithsonian. Today’s major sources include Australia, Brazil, Burma, Arizona and Hawaii.

Closer to home, you can find a nice assortment of both loose and mounted peridot at Urban Jewelers. Come in and take a look …. we think you’ll change your mind about peridot!