Are those real or fake?

Diamond and Australian opal band

Diamond and Australian opal band

Are those real or fake?  We are talking opals here.  Recently I was walking through a craft fair and stopped at a booth with a rather large display of silver jewelry.  I noticed that the inventory was divided into four or five color groups of “opals”.  I knew at first glance that it was not real opal, but thought I would ask the woman behind the counter what the beautiful stone was.  She responded that it was opal.  Not lab created opal or simulated opal- just opal.  I picked up a pendant and looked it over and noticed the mediocre craftmanship and totally uniform pattern of the “opal” as well as the $30 price tag.  Anyone who knows anything about opal knows that you can’t make a large pendant with genuine opal inlay for $30.  There was a good 3 or 4 hours of work in the piece as well, which I am assuming had to be made in China for that price.  What bothers me most is that this woman was selling this garbage between a great display of handmade raku jewelry and another man selling his nice fused glass pieces.  Not only was she misrepresenting the fake opal as real, but she was also projecting the image that she was a craftsperson or artist.  Please don’t support people selling this misrepresented junk jewelry as their craft.  There are a lot of talented people out there trying to make a living selling their art, their passion and their dream that deserve your support.   Buy handmade!

-John Hileman

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