Professional Jeweler Archive: Gympie Gold in Quartz

September 2001

Precious Metals/News

Gympie Gold in Quartz

This unique material from Australia is primed for resurgence, thanks to Kabana

Kabana Inc. is resurrecting and enhancing gold-in-quartz material from the Gympie Goldfields outside Queensland, Australia, now held by Gympie Gold Ltd. “At Kabana we have been fascinated by the regal beauty of gold-in-quartz, which is inspiring for design and always unique,” says Remy Rotenier, who carries the company’s official title of jewelry designer extraordinaire. “It takes a beautiful polish, and the gold veins illuminate the quartz to create the ultimate marbleized look.”

Mining over the past few years has yielded clean quartz with thin, visible gold veins. By April 2000, enough material had been uncovered for Gympie Gold to sign a deal with Kabana, which developed a process to manufacture gold-in-quartz jewelry. Through a processing and marketing venture with Gympie Gold, Kabana now acts as the exclusive distributor of the company’s gold-in-quartz.

Demand Surging

The venture has been so successful, it’s a challenge to keep up with demand. “It takes up to five weeks to get the material, process it and slab it,” says Stavros Eleftheriou, Kabana’s founder. “With demand growing so fast, we can never keep it in stock more than three or four days.” To sustain supply, Gympie works in up to a dozen areas in prospective zones at any one time. This strategy allows Gympie a hit every month or two, keeping the supply flowing.

Together, but Not Equal

Until Kabana developed the process to treat this material, it was difficult to use in jewelry. “The hardness of gold and the quartz is not equal, so we treat the material to make it smooth,” says Eleftheriou. “We don’t add any substances; we compound it with pressure. This keeps the quartz from fracturing like glass even though it’s thinner than 1.5mm.”

Meanwhile, unisex appeal for gold in quartz keeps demand ahead of supply. This unforeseen popularity inspired Kabana to look for extensions within the line. “One thing we are looking at is the potential for watches,” says Eleftheriou. “The beauty of the stone is that no two are the same, so each watch would be individual. Each piece of gold in quartz has its own character, and everybody wants to own a unique item.”

• Kabana Inc., Albuquerque, NM; (505) 843-9330.

– by Lorraine M. O’Donnell, A.J.P.

Every natural authenticated stone provides opportunity and inspiration for the creation of a unique item of jewelry. Gold-in-quartz jewelry is available in a variety of cuts and configurations, including finished cabochons and inlay in 14k and 18k gold for men and women. Suggested retail prices range from $350 to $12,000.

A selection of gold-in-quartz jewelry from Kabana.

Copyright © 2001 by Bond Communications