African Rings & Jewelry Jewellery From Africa – Titanium, Gold, Silver and Platinum.

December 18, 2010

Nyami Nyami


Nyami Nyami is getting a whole lot of press. The amount of people searching for Nyami Nyami pendants in silver is increasing. I have tried to figure out why. Perhaps after the world cup soccer in South Africa more people have found out about this extraordinary myth. After Bungee jumping at Vic Falls and in Zambia I guess Nyami Nyami’s popularity is on the increase. This snake like creature could easily be mistaken as some kind of land locked African dragon.

Nyami Nyami in Sterling silverThese Nyami Nyami pendants are made from sterling silver – I have seen many wooden Nyami Nyamis, but few in precious metals.

For the full story of Nyami Nyami you can visit Nyami Nyami myth

We make Nyaminyami in 9ct gold as well – although they are very heavy so quite expensive. We can also make them in brass if you like the gold colour. This dragon like creature may be scary looking but is actually one of the kindest creatures in African mythology – espousing Ubuntu like characteristics. Not like African witchcraft and many African rituals and African spells. The myth tells of bravery and sacrifice by a creature that was shy and did not like humans – and nyami still sacrificed himself, and indeed his relationship with his wife. Africa has many myths but most are of the darker nature of human beings – myths and legends reflect the times and the people, and Africa was seen as the dark continent due to some of the savage witchcraft practises carried out by witch doctors and African shamans. Sangomas have played their part, and in Africa today still play have an enormous influence on the people and the way they run their lives. Like all practises, sangomas are good and bad – if they follow their craft correctly an African sangoma would never harm another – their primary role is one of helping and protecting – they are not there to throw love spells and revenge spells – but there are many African witches that do – more is the pity – the level of influence that sangomas have in South Africa makes them ideal for social change for the good – whether they go for the money, or to save a nation remains to be seen.

July 16, 2010

Rune Jewelry and Oracle Rings

Rune Jewellery and Oracle Rings

Great Runic Jewelry and gifts.

The Runes are thought to have originated with the Vikings – who left these symbols at the places they plundered.

They predate Christianity and were used by people who need to write stuff down – recipes, spells, amongst others. Most of the knowledge and history of the rune symbols has been lost.

What we have left are 24 symbols, each with it’s own meaning – how much of this meaning is original is debatable.

oracle spinner ringYou can see more esoteric jewelry at African Gold – here we make yin yangs, African masks amongst other beautiful South African made jewelry

These beautiful spinner rings made from titanium and silver or titanium and gold have runes inscribed around the outside – you can choose which rune you like – focusing your mind on where you want to be.

What has evolved is a series of symbols with ideas and concepts behind them.

rune ring in titanium and white gold with diamondsThey are used as a form of oracle – not divination – which is for telling the future. Oracle on the other hand works with your own knowledge and resources. There are an infinite number of possible outcomes to your choices. This tool will help guide you.

It is not a form of fortune telling as some people think. It gives new insight into your subject or issue. Once you have spent time on your subject you draw a rune. Whether you consider it “pot luck” or “guided by your inner self” you bring new knowledge into your reality – you cannot not be influenced – whether you act or not, wether you “believe” or not. You could see a witch doctor to tell the future – or just do it your self!

What a great self tool – no gurus, dogma, religion. Just you. Dealing with your life. All and any symbols will help change your life – as long as you attach the right meaning to the symbol you use – you will be where your mind is – on the meaning, working in your subconscious. Universal concepts such as power, perception and serenity can be life changers if applied correctly. These African Masks show examples of  African Symbols. Bind runes are used in the same way as spells and protection spells – they are a series of runes that are formed together to create a more powerful runic spell. Magic and witchcraft are used and have been used since man started seeing shapes in the dark – and rune spells are as powerful as any African spells or witchcraft formed by sangomas or witch doctors.

THE SELF

This is the Rune MANNAZ. It represents THE SELF.

The starting point is the self. It’s essence is water. Only clarity, willingness to change, is effective now.

A correct relationship to your self is primary, for from it flow all possible correct relationships with others and the Divine.

The Traditional Meanings are: Man; the Human Race.

PARTNERSHIP

This is the Rune GEBO. It represents PARTNERSHIP.

The Traditional Meanings are: A Gift; Offerings from the Gods or from Chiefs to Loyal Followers.

SIGNALS

This is the Rune ANSUZ. It represents SIGNALS.

The Traditional Meanings are: God; the God Loki; Mouth (Source of Divine Utterances; Rivermouth.

SEPARATION

This is the Rune OTHILA. It represents SEPARATION.

The Traditional Meanings are: Property or Inherited Possessions; also Native Land; Home.

STRENGTH

This is the Rune URUZ. It represents STRENGTH.

The Traditional Meanings are: Strength; Sacrificial Animal; the Aurochs (bos primigenius); species of wild ox.

INITIATION

This is the Rune PERTH. It represents INITIATION.

The Traditional Meanings are: Uncertain Meaning; a Secret Matter (Rune of Mystery).

CONSTRAINT

This is the Rune NAUTHIZ. It represents CONSTRAINT.

The Traditional Meanings are: Need; Necessity; Constraint; Cause of Human Sorrow; Lessons; Hardship.

FERTILITY

This is the Rune INGUZ. It represents FERTILITY.

The Traditional Meanings are: Ing; the Legendary Hero; later a God.

DEFENSE

This is the Rune EIHWAZ. It represents DEFENSE.

The Traditional Meanings are: Yew-tree; a Bow Made of Yew; Rune Magic; Avertive Powers;

PROTECTION

This is the Rune ALGIZ. It represents PROTECTION.

The Traditional Meanings are: Protection; Defense; the Elk; Sedge or Eelgrass.

POSSESSIONS

This is the Rune FEHU. It represents POSSESSIONS.

The Traditional Meanings are: Cattle; Goods; the Vital Community Wealth.

JOY

This is the Rune WUNJO. It represents JOY.

The Traditional Meanings are: Joy; also in Cynewulf’s Runic Passages; Absence of Suffering and Sorrow.

HARVEST

This is the Rune JERA. It represents HARVEST.

The Traditional Meanings are: Year; Harvest; A Fruitful Year.

OPENING

This is the Rune KANO. It represents OPENING.

The Traditional Meanings are: Torch; Skiff; Ulcer; Associated with Cult of the Goddess Nerthus.

WARRIOR

This is the Rune TEIWAZ. It represents WARRIOR.

The Traditional Meanings are: Victory in Battle; a Guiding Planet or Star; the God Tiw.

GROWTH

This is the Rune BERKANA. It represents GROWTH.

The Traditional Meanings are: Birch Tree; Associated with Fertility Cults; Rebirth; New Life.

MOVEMENT

This is the Rune EHWAZ. It represents MOVEMENT.

The Traditional Meanings are: Horse; Associated with the Course of the Sun.

FLOW

This is the Rune LAGUZ. It represents FLOW.

The Traditional Meanings are: Water; Sea; a Fertility Source (See Grendel’s Mere in Beowulf).

DISRUPTION

This is the Rune HAGALAZ. It represents DISRUPTION.

The Traditional Meanings are: Hail; Sleet; Natural Forces that Damage.

GATEWAY

This is the Rune THURISAZ. It represents GATEWAY.

The Traditional Meanings are: Giant; Demon; Thorn.

BREAKTHROUGH

This is the Rune DAGAZ. It represents BREAKTHROUGH.

The Traditional Meanings are: Day; God’s Light; Prosperity and Fruitfulness.

STANDSTILL

This is the Rune ISA. It represents STANDSTILL.

The Traditional Meanings are: Ice; Freezing; in the Prose Edda the Frost-Giant Ymir is Born of Ice.

WHOLENESS

This is the Rune SOWELU. It represents WHOLENESS.

The Traditional Meanings are: The Sun.

UNKNOWABLE

This is the Rune ODIN. It represents THE UNKNOWABLE.

The Traditional Meanings are: The Rune of Destiny.

Bind runes are used in the same way as spells and protection spells – they are a series of runes that are formed together to create a more powerful runic spell. Magic and witchcraft are used and have been used since man started seeing shapes in the dark – and rune spells are as powerful as any African spells or witchcraft formed by sangomas or witch doctors. oracle, rune rings, titanium rune, rune symbols, rune meanings, vikings, tell my future, fortune telling, who an I, the self, runic, rune casting, rune pendant, jewellery with runes, runes in South Africa, oracle, rune rings, rune bangle, titanium rune, rune symbols, rune meanings, vikings, tell my future, fortune telling, who an I, the self, runic, rune casting, rune pendant, jewellery with runes,

July 15, 2010

Black Diamonds and Titanium Rings

Titanium and black diamondsSince finding out about black diamonds as a young jeweller, I have been fascinated. “Is there really such a thing as a “black diamond”?” I asked my master goldsmith. Yes, he repiled, they use them for making sandpaper and diamond tip tools.”You mean they crush them up?” I asked. I was surprised and a little sad. The thought of this black gem showing the properties of a diamond with a black hue had captured my imagination. They were not available as a cut gemstone and it was many years before I was to see one.

Now days they are pretty common. They are not as good as I had imagined. They do not have the sparkle of a white diamond. This is because what we see as black is carbon in it’s dirty form. When a white gem is graded any flaws and inclusions count against it as they spoil the sparkle and refraction of the diamond. In a black diamond it is one big flaw – in fact the better the black diamond the blacker and more solid the flaw.

Titanium and diamond ringNone the less, set into titanium rings or platinum wedding bands they have a very good look. They retain all the other properties of a good diamond, namely hardness and durability. This makes the perfect for jewellery – especially mens rings and bangles. Set in pave they create a unique look and contrast with the metals.

Titanium and diamonds have always been a special combination – both very hard, both difficult to come by – the diamond titanium combination is a forever item. Gold and silver are wonderful for jewelry but le’ts face it – they are soft and wear with time.

Titanium and PeridotSilver oxidises (changes colour) and unless you are using 9ct gold (which is hardly gold, only 37.5% pure gold) it will bend and scratch. Even 9ct gold scratches and gouges badly The 18ct golds and 14ct golds are worse as they are softer – Titanium and platinum on the other hand are hard and durable. They will both scratch if treated badly enough – but titanium being 5 times harder than stainless steel, will last a lot better.

This is particularly true with men’s jewelry. Men are rough and take less care of their rings and bangles. From my own experience I like to put a pieces of jewellery on (in fact the same is with clothes and cars) and forget about it. If I need to climb a mountain or change a wheel – I do not want to remove my wedding band first. I do not even think of it – I just dive in and do what I need to do.
Titanium wedding rings and platinum rings are perfect for a man’s ring. Add black diamonds to it and you have a classy piece of jewellery that will last a life time – no matter how much abuse the wedding band or titanium cuff links take.

There are other options for gem stones for men’s jewelry. Any of the hard semi precious stones will work in a men’s ring. In the red colours you have garnet, Ruby, or rubalite (fancy name for red tourmaline). Green colored gems stones are tourmaline, peridot, emerald (brittle). Purple gems come in Amethyst. Blue one can use sapphire or indicolite (blue Tourmaline) – but forget about tanzanite rings – tanzanite and titanium are a terrible combo.

Tanzanite and titaniumTanzanite is not a stone I would rate as jeweller. It has the hardness of glass, and even a woman’s rings will suffer. Tanzanite gems will scratch, chip or crack pretty soon in a tanzanite ring. If you are lucky enough that it doesn’t – with time you can expect it too lose it’s facets and round off. Tanzanite engagement rings are about the worst idea anyone ever came up with.

Another great gem is Citrene. It comes in the yellows and oranges and is not too expensive. It’s pretty hard – Of course Cubic Zirconias are another gem that I rate very highly. The modern cubic comes in a huge range of colours, they are cheap and they are harder than most of the semi precious stones. They have a refractive index that is higher than that of diamonds (they sparkle more) and they are easily available. Against them is the fact that they are inexpensive and easily available.

Black diamond set into titanium ringAgainst black diamonds and white diamonds all of the other gems fail in terms of hardness and wearability. What they lack in hardness though they gain in beauty. The colors of semi precious gems are fantastic. No two are alike and why they call them semi precious I have no idea – for me they are all precious. They are supposed to be more common than diamonds – but diamonds are common – there are huge reserves of diamonds on the earth – some good spin from the diamond mining companies makes diamonds and black stones rare.

If you prefer classical diamond engagement rings you will find many styles available on the net. You will also find African wedding bands and Celtic engagement rings. These can be custom made using Celtic or African wedding symbols.

Wayne Skews
2010

June 23, 2010

Why is titanium jewellery so expensive?

Titanium and Gold spinner ring

I see that titanium rings from China and from some websites are really cheap? Why then are some sites so expensive?

A common question from my customers – Rings from China are really inexpensive – and they are great quality titanium wedding rings.

Titanium David ringThe reason they are so cheap is the quantities you need to order. The titanium factories in China produce limited styling in big quantities on CNC machines. The styles are great, if limited, and the quality of titanium bangles are great.

On the other hand smaller factories custom make titanium cuff links and jewellery to suit their clients needs. The production is done on lathes and goldsmiths inlay the precious metal by hand.

Titanium and silver braceletOur titanium factory produces about 1500 unique styles of titanium rings. They can be ordered in any size – even very large titanium rings, and can be customised. We accept orders for one ring at a time with custom engraving inside….. and best of all we deliver in 6 working days. – Beat that China!

Have a look at some of our styles of titanium jewelry and you will see that the work we put into them is great.

You can customize your styling so that you get a unique titanium ring – or you can have a look at our custom designs and choose a titanium style ring that you like!

June 22, 2010

Free Vuvuzela charms

African Gold is giving a free Vuvuzela charm away with every purchase over US$150.

Sterling silver vuvuzela charm

Sterling silver vuvuzela charm

You read correctly.

Wane Skews of Africangold says he will give a free sterling silver Vuvuzela charm with every order over R900 or US$120

Like it or not the Vuvuzela has become an icon of the South African World Cup Soccer. In 2010 the business has turned into a 9 million rand business. This little piece of Africa will be a talking point for many years. “I was looking for a small symbols I could make in gold and silver” says Wayne. I needed something to promote our new site – www.jewelry.com – which is a shopping site leading to our portals.

“I needed to promote our local resellers of titanium jewellery in South Africa. I figured if I can drive the public to the retailers it would help sales. The response has been great – we have 50 retailers selling our exclusive range of titanium rings, cuffs, and bangles. The public can easily find a retailer near them by using the search facility at Trilogy Jewellers – titanium rings and cuff links. Interested – have a look at Titanium Jewellers in South Africa” said Wayne. Should any member of the public order from one of our titanium resellers we are happy to send the charm through with the titanium ring or titanium cuff links.

To Celebrate the world cup we have decided to give a free sterling silver Vuvuzela charm with your order over US$150.

Quote this code in any of your dealings with us and we will pack one in with your order.

Promotion code: vuvuzela2010

Follow any of the shopping sites to find great jewellery and gifts.

Celtic knot fancy with center gem
Sterling silver R690
titanium ring
Ti and silver R1250
red gold and platinum ring
9ct Red and White gold – R3480
free mason ring
Ti and silver
R1850
mask pendant
Silver R840
bushman africa pendant
Silver R280
plectrum silver
Silver R840

oracle rune ringTi & Gold R1840

January 9, 2010

African Gold Launches New Shopping Sites

africangold.co.za today launched the first in it series of shopping portals.

“Our web site is great as a catalogue – but does not make the buying process easy” said Wayne Skews of African Gold. “We decided to open a series of online shopping site in niche markets – each with it’s own shopping cart and credit card facilities.

Celtis Rings and Knot jewelleryThe first site up was Celtic Dreams– this site carries our Celtic range. We decided on Joomla as an interface – Wayne spent his Christmas holiday on a steep learning curve – designing and publishing the site.

African Mask Jewelry in Gold and SilverNext up was African Mask Jewelry (spelt the American way with a dot com address to try and get the international market and some interest from the Kwanzaa concept. This range is truly an original concept – the range was designed in collaboration with indigenous people – George Skews put the whole thing together including carving the miniature masks models.

Titanium Wedding BandsTitanium wedding rings was put up to help our trade site, Trilogy Jewellers, deal more effectively with the many price requests we get from the public.

Our plan is to first direct the public to a local reseller through our Trilogy Jewellers web site and then, if a South African titanium reseller is not available, try and help them through our online shopping portal.

We have a few more South African websites planned – all covering niche jewellery markets.

Host your website - web site design in South AfricaThe last site was a web hosting site – African Domain Hosting – this is to help other jewellers host at better prices and help them with the confusing aspects of building a website and hosting it.

We are hoping to attract internet shoppers who are looking for strange and original jewelry.

Now online – more African Gold shopping sites.

www.freemasonsjewellery.com -Free Masons rings and bangles in titanium and silver. Have a look at this brand new site showing Free masons rings and free masons bangles and cuff links.

And now you can see titanium and silver plectrums and picks online at www.plectrums.co.za– custom made and custom engraved plectrums and picks for musicians and guitar players – great gifts for anyone in the music industry.

Of couse if you want to see all the shopping sites in one place you can visit www.africangold.co.za/shopping.htm – all of our sites are listed in one place.

Rose gold jewellery

Do you struggle yo find red gold or rose jewellery – or someone to make up jewelry in red gold? Have a look at this classy site – great selection of red gold rings – there is even a beautiful yin yang in red and yellow gold! Have a look at www.redgoldrings.co.za – lots of different styles of red gold.

We aslo have a portal for jewellery – browse to www.jewelry.co.za– here you will find links to all our shopping sites for handmade jewellery in South Africa.

March 30, 2009

How to buy a diamond – first time buyers.

I received a question regarding diamonds – I thought this may be of interest to others looking to buy diamonds.

Hello,
What is the difference between ideal and excellent cut diamonds?
There are so many factors to consider. Would you be kind enough as to give me some pointers as what to look for or avoid? Please help.
Thank you in advance.
Sincerely,
Susan

Hi,
Very little difference – “ideal cut” is a brand like Nike – so don’t be misled.

You can find out more about diamonds at diamond_facts
Also remember that even after you have chosen a diamond by looking at the 4 C’s (cut, clarity, carat and colour) some diamonds just look better. The one thing missing on all certificates is brilliance and sparkle. A well cut diamond should sparkle – some are much better than others. Only by looking one stone next to another do you see the difference.

If you are looking at stones – always ask to see them next to one another – you will see a difference in colour, size and sparkle. Most dealers will open one at a time and close the packet before showing another – security as the excuse.

Remember that carat is a weight – not a size – a badly cut diamond might be bigger in size than a well cut diamond – making you think it is a bargain – but because it is not in proportion it will not reflect and refract light in the best way – making it dull and lifeless. Unless it is next to a well cut stone you are unlikely to spot the difference. But once you have seen a lively stone you will not want to buy size over brilliance.

The best way to start is to visit reputable stores and let them show you stones and prices. Ask for details and write them down – colour, caret weight and clarity. This will allow you to compare pricing. All diamonds should have a certificate – listing all the details. This usually ensures that they are not conflict diamonds.

I am happy to show you some diamonds and teach you what to look for – it is not that hard – jewellers tend to make it hard – keep the mystery.

Decide on a budget first – very important. Remember that the sales person will try to “upsell” . Buying an engagement stone is an emotional decision and it is very easy to get carried away. Most people want a “1/2 carat or a 1 carat, this makes it easy for us to manipulate your buying decision. If you are buying as a couple it is even harder. Choose your budget and STICK TO IT.

Then decide what size you would like (may not always be what you want). Prices on diamonds jump disproportionately when you go from just under a rounded size to that size – for example a stone weighing 0.48 carats is a lot cheaper than a stone weighing 0.5ct (1/2 carat). The difference in size is so small that only a very accurate scale can tell the difference. There is no way by looking  that anybody (including a highly experainced dealer) can tell. So why pay the premium for no difference!

From there I can help you decide what colour and clarity. If it is an engagement stone – it should be white (unless you like the fancy yellows etc – they are beautiful) This means the cert should be a colour H or above.

The stone does not need to be flawless – anything above a Si1 is good as you cannot see the flaw without magnification (although if the flaw is in the wrong place it can reflect through the stone and make it dull).

I have seen “loving couples” fall out over buying diamonds. Every girls dream is a “blue white one carat diamond”. Often this is just not possible – and in a lot of cases totally impractical. I had blokes with the budget come in and buy a huge stone for a lady that has tiny fingers – the result is that the design is limited – usually to a large claw stuck on top of a tiny band – ugly as anything! An engagement ring needs to be worn every day, hopefully for the rest of ones life – think about it. Consider the stress of wearing (and being responsable for) a ring that costs as much as a house. Perhaps that one carat diamond should be in a dress ring to be worn on special occasions.

black diamond in titaniumWhen choosing a shank design, the same thing applies, it must be wearable, and it must be hard wearing – very fine shanks and claws mean that you will be back in the future for repairs. White gold is very soft – go for platinum if you can afford it – it will pay off in the long run. Watch out for rhodium plated rings, they look fantastic when you buy but it will wear off, sometimes ending up with a lemon colour white gold. Another alternative are Titanium engagement rings – very hard and durable – but it does have limitation in design. The less expensive option is a titanium shank and a diamond set into titanium – black diamonds are always a great option for mens rings.

The last pointer……Men – when buying without your partner – be careful. Most of you have no clue about what your partner wants. Trust me. I have had customers who have been married 40 years coming in to have their rings remodeled.  The ring has worn (or they have built up the courage to change it) and now is their chance to change the design. They confide in me that they never liked the ring from day one – but did not want to hurt their new fiances feelings! Imagine that – wearing a ring you hate for 40 years! My advice – include her in the buying descion. If you want to surprise her – buy her the diamond and give her that – let her chose her own design. If you want to put something on her finger – choose an inexpensive, simple design and tell her that you will take her to the jeweller to have her dream ring made. It will be the start of a caring relationship.

Let me know if I can help.

You can see some engagement rings at www.africangold.co.za or you can email me at web@africangold.co.za

Regards
Wayne
082 574 9569

South Africa

March 22, 2009

AKUA’BA – AKUA’S CHILD

Aku'aba pendantAKUA’BA – AKUA’S CHILD – see africa5 jewellery

Ashante (Ashanti) Ghana

Originally these statues are said to have represented the Moon Goddess – NYAME.

According to legend (2) a woman named AKUA became pregnant and had a beautiful daughter by carrying this figure.

Until recently many AKAN women carried the figure to induce fertility – it was carried like a child on the woman’s back.

In the past 50 years the figures have been naturalized, earlier examples had rudimentary arms, a stylized neck and conical torso (3). The disc shaped head is characteristic.


Our experience is that this figure is internationally appreciated for its striking design and is instantly identified with Africa
.

from: www.africangold.co.za/masks.htm

email us:web@africangold.co.za

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March 17, 2009

Nyami Nyami – River God from Zimbabwe

Penadnt in Sterling Silver NYAMI NYAMI
The Protector

NYAMINYAMI is the WATER GOD – river snake – of the ZAMBEZI RIVER. The TONGA people of the ZAMBEZI VALLEY pledged their allegiance to this spirit by performing ceremonial dances.

NYAMINYAMI (literal meaning: meat meat) showed himself often – especially in the dry season and allowed the people to cut meat from his body in their times of need.

NYAMINYAMI, the great RIVER GOD with the body of a snake and a fish-like head, protected and brought good fortune to those who believed in him. One year, however, when NYAMINYAMI had gone up-river and his wife had gone down-river, each to help the people, the white man came to build THE WALL in mighty KARIBA GORGE.

NYAMINYAMI did not want his movements along the many magnificent miles of the ZAMBEZI to be impeded.
HE WAS UNHAPPY


KARIBA DAM took five years to complete. Unexpected heavy floods, broken bridges and collapsed walls caused time delays and many lost their lives.

The following is taken from information provided by the OMAY CRAFT CENTRE (5), in the NYAMINYAMI DISTRICT in ZIMBABWE.

TONGA ELDERS AND THEIR SPIRIT MEDIUMS MANAGED TO PERSUADE NYAMINYAMI TO CALM DOWN. THE DAM WAS COMPLETED AND KARIBA LAKE CAME INTO BEING. HOWEVER, NYAMINYAMI WAS SEPARATED FROM HIS WIFE AND NEVER AGAIN SHOWED HIMSELF TO ANY HUMAN BEING.

from:  www.africangold.co.za/masks.htm

email us:web@africangold.co.za

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