Our Washington Jades consist primarily of very fine-grained, tough, naturally interwoven tremolite/actinolite mineral assemblages. Each piece of Washington Jades that we offer has been carefully hand-harvested at our project site by a team with decades of combined experience in geology, jade and gemstone carving.
Routine confirmatory testing of our materials includes geochemical element determination, hardness and specific gravity tests. Scanning Electron Microscope mapping and mineral testing was conducted on all our Washington Stone types. Hardness consistently tests in the 5.5 to 7 range on the Mohs hardness scale, while alteration skins or rinds can test lower, generally in the 3 to 6 range. Specific gravity, or density, generally tests in the 2.9 to 3.1 range. Of course, the most important test often remains the cutting of windows or polished surfaces on the outside of specific stones, to highlight each piece’s unique color, texture, intensity, uniformity and ability to polish.
Our Green Jade collection tends to be a relatively easy stone to work with, and is best cut or worked along the grain, where when present, healed shear planes can create a fine pattern of lighter color lines across the stone. Fine grained yellow specs of pyrite can often be seen on polished surfaces, and minor other mineral inclusions include diopside and chlorite.
Our Green/White collection is a very unusual, swirly textured Nephrite Jade type consisting of white/cream colored areas with fresh inclusions of very fine pyrite, minor chalcopyrite and a chromium bearing silicate mineral. Where these metallic inclusions have been altered, iron and chromium have been released into the stone coloring the Jade with swirly green color patterns. Black spots, when seen, are the result of pyrite alteration, creating goethite, an iron oxide mineral. This Jade type tends to be on the harder side of Nephrite Jade working wise, allowing for fine details and use of thin plates for earrings and such work. Minor inclusions also include some diopside, sometimes occurring as more granular, beige colored bands within the stone.
As with every natural stone, our Washington Jades are likely to be naturally imperfect. While textural changes and hidden features, such as fractures or shearing which can always occur within a natural stone. We endeavor to photograph and present each piece for sale with sufficient information to properly estimate the stone’s potential in its rough state for carvers, lapidaries, jewellers and collectors. Our Jades that are offered for sale are as natural as when we hand-harvested them from the ground where they were formed. We do not treat or alter our materials in any way through oiling, waxing, dyeing or resin impregnation. Each piece is individually evaluated and priced to reflect its characteristics and estimated recoveries as finished product.