Baltic Jewellery News (March 2016) No. 30

Page 1


March 2016 (30)


Europe‘s top show for gems & jewellery in autumn.

n i o 6! iss r a t 0 1 t m st th 2 n’ e g i 0 Do r r ril 3 to p bi A h i e: ex d l i n a de

Meet the international Gemworld in Munich.


was another good year for European amber

jewellers. Good results were achieved – for yet another year in a row - thanks to such factors as the prices of raw material that had been high for the last few years. Prices are still high,

despite demand for amber products in China visibly falling over the year. Although so far there are no official statistics available that could confirm this economic success, the producers’ declarations and their intentions to expand further, for example by participating in exhibition events on different continents, are enough to take for evidence of that. Is 2016 going to be a continuation of these increasing trends? There is a lot of indication that it might, in fact, be weaker. There is worrying information coming from China, which has been the largest buyer of European amber products, about the slowing economy over there. It is bound to have a negative impact on the purchasing power of Chinese consumers. And unfortunately, the faith in amber’s magic power might not be enough here... We must remember that the Middle Kingdom, is currently the

The alternative – especially for those who have only bet on

largest producer of amber products – the factories over there

the Chinese horse – is looking for new outlets. Only, who will

have huge capital at their disposal, whereas the European pro-

diversify the factories and take a risk of betting on an unknown

ducers can only compete with them using design. Is it going

horse, for instance an Indian or American one, if the Chinese

to be enough to cope with such strong competition?

one is still in the lead...? Anna SADO

March 2016 (30)


Topicalities 8

Top jewellery blogs to follow


Promotion of the brand in a jeweler’s showroom


8 22

Russian Jewellery Report 14

New “Kaliningrad Amber Craftsmen’s Guild”


Kaliningrad amber factory generates a new amber market

Polish Jewellery Report 22

We get more satisfaction from life


Everything is still ahead of us


Gold Silver Time for the 17th time


The verdict of the jury of the Amberif design award


Amberif 2016


Amber association Le’amber Censortium


Jewellery with history-making


Generally about 2015


Art Gallery Putti takinf step towards new digital opportunities


Latvian assay office


Munich Jewellery Week

Lithuanian Jewellery Report

Latvian Jewellery Report

German Jewellery Report Danish Jewellery Report

40 54


Skt. Loye Award


Nobel Jewellery Prize 2015


More Baltic exhibitors at Precious


Do all Finns Hibernate?

Swedish Jewellery Report

Finnish Jewellery Report Chinese Jewellery Report 66

The World’s Largest Jewellery Market place in March

Ukraine Jewellery Report 68

Amber Extraction in Ukraine

Worldwide Jewellery Report 72

Official Price for raw amber by Kaliningrad Amber Combine


The Worldwide Price for Raw Amber


The Worldwide Silver Price


The Worldwide Gold Price


Global Jewellery Market: Innovations and Opportunities


Amber. Simply Amber


Book Review International Amber Association Report 86

The operational year of the IAA


BACTERIA in ancient flea may be ancestor of the Black Death

Inclusions Tools 90

THE LOST-WAX CASTING general rules


An Interview with Prof. B. KOSMOWSKA-CERANOWICZ


What Europeans this is inside a refugee backpack

Personality Cartoon

73 92

Other 119

Major jewellery trade fairs

Baltic Jewellery News / March 2016 (30) Paplaujos st. 5–7, LT-11342, Vilnius, Lithuania Tel. / Fax: +370 5 2608497; E-mail: Editor / Anna Sado / E-mail: Designer / DANA SMITIENE / Translators / VERTIMU GURU, / CIRCULATION 3 000 Reporter: Poland: J. Magiera /, A. Kucharski /; A.Sado /; A. Klikowicz / Lithuania: V. Zygiene /; V. Pavalkiene /; O. Guntoriute /; J. Ludaviciene / Finland: A. Altarriba /; Russia: Y. Velikotsky/ Latvia: Z. Putane / Sweden: A. Alexon / Singapore: J. Seng / Distribution in the whole Baltic Sea Region. Copyright: Contents of “Baltic Jewellery News” are copyright. ISSN 2335-2132 Reproduction of material in part or in whole is not permitted in any form without the written authorization of the publisher. The editorial office is not responsible for the content of advertisements and for the accuracy of the facts presented by the authors.

We invite all those whose interests are related to our goals to join our project. Only with the help of various discussions perspective of the jewellery business of the region can become clear and the magazine – better. Thank you for the cooperation!

19 Stycznia 5 st., 97-400 Belchatow, Poland Tel.: +48 505 178 270; +48 513 082 023 Fax +48 446 31 15 13 E-mail:


TOP JEWELLERY BLOGS to follow By Odilija GUNTORIUTE As I walked arround the Gold Silver Time exhibition, I noticed two very active girls, who were trying out different jewellery and making photos. I thought to myself – “Where have I seen them?“ It was Agata and Katarzyna – two bloggers from PICA PICA Jewellery Blog. As they present themselves they are cuckoo about jewellery. One of their goals is to inspire. Well they have inspired me to share with you which jewellery blogs are my favourite. PICA PICA JEWELLERY BLOG Only few people are aware how these tiny pieces of art are created. Often, it’s a really complex, multistage process. That’s why Agata and Katarzyna, two young ladies from Poland, are sharing with their readers some practical knowledge. They inspire, advise and interview designers. Agata has graduated from the University of Fine Arts in Poznań with a Master’s Degree in Sculpture Studies and from the Warsaw School of Economics with a major in Public Relations. Katarzyna has graduated from the University of Fine Arts in Poznań with a Master’s Degree in Photography. Their attitude towards jewelry is more professional than ‘pretty, pretty, shiny, shiny!” They know that jewelry can be talked about in an attractive way. They also believe that jewelry is more than flashy accessories – it’s a lifestyle. ›

KLIMT02 Klimt02 is not only a web-site about jewellery is a platform for contemporary jewellers to connect and spread their me­ssage. It is very pleasing to see the level of proffesional work that is put to spread the message that „jewellery is an artistic discipline equal to any other yet at the same time reflects other art forms.” If jewellery is your passion Klimt02 newsletters won’t burden your email box on the contrary you will find the latest information on upcoming events, released books and invitations to participate in competitions. Good quality photos promoting jewellers’ work is a signature of this blog, not only should you seek to get inspirations from Klimt02, this platform is where you want your work to be displayed.




Prize. Each year they name awards for: Chemistry, Physics,

This is probably the most popular jewellery blog and you

Medicine, Literature, Economy and Peace. In page 60 you can

could find it in every top list. It does not divide itself as only

find new winners of the Nobel Jewellery Prize.

Danielle appreciates what is new and what is old. Thus the jew-


ellery blog focuses on jewellery trends, antique and period jew-

You just must visit Blog of Ella Kay “The Court Jeweller“ if

ellery, celebrity jewellery, as well as exclusive designer inter-

you are interested in royal jewellery. Ella weekly covers where

views. It is also a hub for gemstone and jewellery education,

royal family members were noticed and comments on jewe­

considering Danielle’s Graduate Gemologist studies through the

llery that was worn. There are quite a few interesting jewellery

Gemological Institute of America. With five years experience as

history articles and this blog shares stories about royal fam-

head gemologist and appraiser at a local antique jewellery store,

ily members jewellery collections. My own favourite

she has most recently decided to pursue writing and consult-

part of this blog is Jewel detective game. Ella shares

ing full-time. Her blog is the place that you should check if you

a photo from different historic balls and asks if

want your jewellery be noticed by jewellery addicts world wide.

readers can identify the jewellery that royals are wearing in the picture. Definitely check the comments section to learn more about royal jewellery. Don’t forget to follow The Court Jeweller facebook page its really worth it. ›

ART JEWELRY FORUM Just as Klimt02, AJF is not only a professional platform, they advocate for contemporary art jewellery since 1997. They are activists that organize funding for actors in the contemporary art jewellery field and form alliances to further their goals. Thus you can be sure they know what they are talking about in their blog. The Baltic Jewellery News have printed their articles, interviews and reviews before, because their work


is professional and entertaining to our readers. If you want to be up to date with the contemporary art jewellery subscribe,


follow AJF on social media and check their bookstore.

Diagonal is actually a Swedish art initiative founded in 2010 by Sanna Svedestedt & Karin Roy Andersson. These two jewellers spark with their charm and energy, which could be felt in their blog. Here you can find not only Sanna’s and Karin’s art initiatives, they also announce other initiatives. You can see not only jewellery, but also find where thay got their inspirations from. My own favourite project is the Nobel Jewellery





contemporary or antique jewellery blog as it is usually done.

PROMOTION OF THE BRAND in a jeweler’s showroom By Justyna MAGIERA Jeweler’s showroom, like any other company who wants to exist on the market for the longest time possible, must promote its brand.


positioning of the brand visualization (the logo) in the consumers’ consciousness is so much important. The most crucial thing, then, is to make the logo meet two criteria: 1. be recognizable and 2. bring positive associations.

purpose of such promotion is not only to support

How to embed the logo in the consciousness of our customers?

the immediate sale but also t create the strong

and long-term market position. The larger the company is, the more intensive and systematic promotional activities are

Huge syndicates spend really big money on TV commer-

required. However, we cannot forget that that branding is not

cials and press advertisements. However, such solutions are a

a competence of huge market chains only, and the owners

complete mistake for the smaller, local companies. Such firms

of individual shops selling jewelry shall also remember

should search for brand vehicles somewhere else. The smaller

about it.

the circle of customers, the more effective the promotion shall

In order to have an efficient promotion of a jeweler’s show-

turn to be. And, of course, the cheaper! Therefore, it is best to

room one shall carefully connect many different factors. The

focus on your real customers at first and build a reliable and

added values of kind service, availability of after-sales ser-

strong brand consciousness in their minds.

vice, reliable advertising message are of huge importance.

The simplest way is, of course, to use the trademark pack-

Unfortunately, we often tend to forget about one more crucial

age. Everybody knows that jewelry shall be packed accord-

thing – a human being is a visualize, and the dominating type

ing to its value. Therefore, do not economize on packing and,

of our memory is the visual memory. That is why the proper

first of all, do not resign from your company logo imprint on


whenever they clean their jewelry and, at the same time, they

jewelry, of course) that the customer takes home with them.

shall strengthen the company’s (positive) image in their mind.

Obviously, if we want to make the logo stay in the customer’s

More and more jeweler’s showrooms choose such products.

consciousness, it shall be visible on the package. Thanks to

Firstly, because they are not expensive, and secondly, they

that the customer shall be in touch with it for longer than just

are original and practical. In this group of products we shall

during the visit in the showroom. The printing costs

find some universal ones i.e.

are not big so it is not connected with paying high

the things that shall match

additional costs.

each type of jewelry, and some more professional ones, which are designed

The logo can made visible on almost every

to match only the selected

type of package – so it is not just the expen-

types of jewelry. You choose.

sive ones that give you this opportunity. Even

Yet another step ahead

the cheapest paper boxes can be

can be made with the addi-

personalized. However, you

tional method of sales – the

should remember that the

Gift Coupons. Similar task is

more exclusive the box, e.g.

performed by the Regular

timber or leather, the greater

Customer Card which shall

value it shall present to the

make you be able to express

customer, too. So, there is a

your appreciation to the cus-

big chance that the package

tomers who visit your show-

shall serve the customer lon-

room more often than others.

ger, e.g. as a jewel case. Thanks

Let’s not forget about placing a visible logo inside the

to that, the customer shall have a

showroom as well, locating it both on the window dis-

longer contact with our logo and

plays and inside your shop. The customer shall remember

they shall see it more than just on the moment of purchase

and consolidate our logo much faster when they

which, as a result, shall help to achieve the ultimate goal: our

see it more frequently and when it appears in many differ-

trademark shall be embedded in the customer’s memory the

ent ways.

best possible. Apart from the packages, we can use a number of other products which, when given to the customer, shall efficiently promote our brand for a long time. This can surely be popular things but it is good to consider whether the gift matches such a sophisticated and exclusive thing as jewelry is. Isn’t it worth to choose something more original? Well, after all, is going to be our promotional gadget so it must be, just like the company it promotes – the best! Like the logo marked packages, the additional product purpose is to make the customer have the most frequent contact with the logo. Even better solution is to choose an object that is directly or indirectly connected with the main product, jewelry in this case. It must be a utility thing as only such an object shall guarantee that the customer comes back to it again and again. A mug

As we see, there are many different ways to do your brand-

or a tea-cup with the logo printed on is an ideal vehicle for a

ing. The final form depends on the creativity and the bud-

selected brand of tea or coffee, but jewelry can be matched

get to be spent on the project. Let’s remember, however,

with, let’s say, a jewelry cleaning cloth or cleaning liquid with

that whatever type of measures we take, we must act con-

your logo on. Undoubtedly, that is going to be a much better

sequently, so the long-term actions only can guarantee the

solution. The customer shall be reminded about our company

expected results.



the packing materials. It is the package (apart from the very



Compensa Vienna Insurance Group UkmergÄ—s g. 280, LT-06115 Vilnius Tel. 8 5 250 66 00


New “Kaliningrad Amber Craftsmen’s Guild”:

WE SEEK… WE WANT… WE AIM… By Yuri VELIKOTSKY, Chairman of the Board – Chief Workmaster of Kaliningrad Amber Craftsmen's Guild

On 11 November 2015, a new regional public association “Kaliningrad Amber Craftsmen’s Guild” was founded in Kaliningrad. The western region of Russia has a great many of amber craftsmen. Nobody can tell an exact number. Some of them are members of the Union of Russian Artists, others are a part of the Association of a Creative Profession, many work for large and small jewellery companies, yet, the majority are independent craftsmen. They do not joint any associations and try to deal with emerging challenges on their own.


of us have faced the major problem – acquisition of

A guild of amber craftsmen used to exist in Königsberg some

high quality raw materials for our work. For a long

time ago, and we hope for the revival of the old traditions of

time, we had been trying every level of solution to this prob-

the guild brotherhood.

lem. Finally, a faint hope sprang up in 2014 – Kaliningrad Amber

Officially, we came into the world on 11 November 2015.

Plant began selling high quality amber at an affordable price

We seek to unite amber craftsmen of Kaliningrad on the

to us. Stone-cutters were happy to get down to work, many

basis of mutual assistance and understanding, to look for ways

of them managed to create noteworthy works.

for developing our creativity in integral association.

Though, as is often the case, this opportunity was cut

We want to deal with common problems in a friendly

off in prime. There came along some craftsmen who were

environment and to jointly seek ways to overcome them. This

unhappy about not being able to buy amber for various rea-

equally concerns purchase of raw materials, participation in

sons. Besides, amber unexpectedly became a point of interest

fairs and exhibitions, building relations with other creative

for artists who had been engaged solely in painting all their

unions and public organisations.

life and had nothing to do with the stone-cutting, however,

We aim at active promotion of our craftsmen’ achieve-

now they demanded the stone. Moreover, amber suddenly

ments via print media, TV, the Internet, thereby, heightening

became a means of exerting pressure on craftsmen. Someone

the society’s interest in our creative work.

handled the paperwork for purchase of stone, and someone –

We are making our first steps, but we hope to have an

did not. For these reasons, there emerged conflicts among

opportunity to strongly express ourselves at the nearest exhi-

craftsmen. And, while they were in reciprocal reproaches and

bitions both in Kaliningrad and outside of our region, by pre-

sorted out – who was right and who was wrong – Kaliningrad

senting new and fascinating amber works therein to the audi-

Amber Plant began selling amber by auctions only and, thus,

ence for approval.

virtually deprived stone-cutters of the opportunity to officially

We were born on 11 November. This is the day when the

acquire raw materials for their activities.

Orthodox Church celebrates the memory of the Holy Martyr

All of these events have led to the formation of the initia-

Anastasia the Roman. The legend tells she was a beauty, a true

tive group, consisting of prominent and experienced artists,

divine beauty that noticeably caused her sacrificial death. The

who claimed “we need our own, fully independent organi-

Righteous Anastasia should become the holy patroness of

sation to unite solely craftsmen - stone-cutters.” The name

amber craftsmen and help us in creating the most beautiful

was born instantly – “Kaliningrad Amber Craftsmen’s Guild.”

works of the solar stone. We want to believe it will be so.


Amber decanter and two glasses "George", author Konstantin Bushmelev (2015) Alexander Korolev, easter Egg „Faberge imitation“

Necklace "Mistress of the river" from the "Prussian honey"; style – Alexander Yuritsyn, Design and work of Lana Egorova

experience with a big involvement. The best experts and judges of amber who create fashion on amber, set tendencies of development of whole branch, offering opportunities for new cooperation, come to the Factory. Of course, the Factory is pleased to support such a dialogue. “Such cooperation is of great cultural significance not only for the Factory and Russia in general, but also for the entire world amber industry, – says Mikhail Zatsepin, General Director of Kaliningrad Amber Factory Ltd. – Projects that are already being implemented or will soon be implemented in cooperation with foreign partners, are an invaluable contribution that Mikhail ZATSEPIN, General Director of Kaliningrad Amber Factory Ltd.

each makes to the development of the amber industry and the creation of new areas of development and popularization of this amazing «solar stone» not only in the Baltic States, but through-


out the world. Our common goal – is to make sure that amber is


loved and appreciated in all over the world. After all, amber – a

reation of Russian amber brand and promoting it

unique, lively and energizing stone, from which you can create

both domestically and internationally – this is one of

unique products of different applications».

Kaliningrad Amber Factory main tasks. Today, we can

In 2015, Kaliningrad Amber Factory received several pres-

safely say that the new strategy of active promotion of amber

tigious awards. Among them: the highest award of the Creative

in Russia produced a new wave of love for amber among the

Union of Artists of Russia – Gold medal «For contribution to

population. Cooperation of Kaliningrad Amber Factory with

the national culture» and the International Prize «GLOBAL

the leading Russian jewellers and designers of different styles

BUSINESS BRAND» in the nomination «Global Business Legend:

and the directions gave new life to a solar stone. Production

Made in Russia» for significant contribution to the strengthen-

of a wide range of products – from furniture pieces to jew-

ing of the strategic potential of the country, increasing pros-

elry, accessories and artwork, was started. Today amber as

perity of its people.

the Russian brand can be met in different segments, includcosmetology, cultural heritage and modern stone-cutting art.


Few years ago it was only a dream.

Creative Association RUSSIAN AMBER appeared at the end

ing fashion, space decorating, industrial tourism, medicine and

of 2014. It is possible to tell that the young designers which are


in love with amber created a new history of amber. RUSSIAN

Cooperation with designers, jewellers, art artists, partici-

AMBER became a «creative laboratory» for the representatives

pation in exhibition activity, organization of creative compe-

of the Russian creative class, giving them the opportunity to

titions and carrying out museum expositions in Moscow and

get acquainted with the unique material and to realize their

other regions of Russia, creation of the art objects and unique

creative projects.

exhibits which have cultural value is material expression of

Young designers not only fell in love with the amber, but

the policy of the factory directed on creation of the Russian

also managed to inspire other creative Russian individuals to

school of processing of amber and its promoting among the

use amber in their works. They also helped people who work

main groups of the population.

professionally with amber to take a new look on a solar stone.

In this work the role is played by partners from the dif-

One of the most significant projects in which participated

ferent countries, including Lithuania and Poland, wo impart

RUSSIAN AMBER, was the project «AMBER 3.0.» It was aimed at


Photos by Aleksandra SHALAGINOVA


KALININGRAD AMBER FACTORY generates a new amber market

Kaliningrad Amber Factory. Established in 1947. The only enterprise in the world that produces the 50-million-year-old Baltic amber. Your reliable partner for over 65 years. 238508 Russia, Kaliningradskaya oblast, Yantarniy Poselok, Balebina str. 1. tel: +7 (4012) 31 08 55 e-mail:


the development of the Russian market of amber processing. The project essence – a new approach to production, where the designer, marketer and manufacturer company act as a single entity. The designer creates a product idea, marketer develops the concept of marketing and sales promotion, and production worker – does everything to make the transition from theory to practice minimally painful for the original artistic and marketing plan. Young designers from Creative association acted in the

of raw amber has not changed for several years. First of all, the

project as designers. The Association of processors of amber

results of the auction allowed to determine true market value

was responsible for production part. For the market, i.e. – the

of the raw amber extracted by the enterprise. The manage-

Kaliningrad association of marketing specialists. An ultimate

ment understood that there are real prerequisites for increas-

goal of the project – giving of new actual image to amber and

ing the price of amber, and auction demonstrated that – the

emergence in the Russian market of new youth amber brands.

initial price on a number of lots has increased on average four

“The decision to unite ideas of young designers, experience of

times. Until recently, the price was established on the basis of

the amber masters owning skills of processing of amber and the

the cost spent on manufacturing, on payment of taxes, etc.

latest marketing strategies arose within global work on creation

Now the Factory approached amber cost to market cost and

of new image of amber — told General Director of Kaliningrad

formed the price on the basis of the results of the auction. As

Amber Factory Ltd. Mikhail Zatsepin. – Our task — to radically

its task the Factory sees all-round development of Russian

change the attitude to amber and to offer consumers the updated

amber branch, and therefore – the support of domestic pro-

range of products. Without exaggeration I can tell that today we

ducers. Therefore, the management very attentively analysed

do not only create a new product, but also we form the new mar-

results of auction and differentially approached adjustment

ket of products of amber”.

of the prices of amber of different fractions.

Following the results of 2015 RUSSIAN AMBER is recognized


as the winner in the nomination “Discovery of the Year” in an annual rating of one of the largest Russian media holdings.

Development of Russian amber industry and moderniza-


tion of the Kaliningrad Amber Factory require significant high-

Following the order of the President of the Russian

qualified staff resources. Enhancing the prestige of the profes-

Federation to withdraw from the export raw materials model,

sion – one of the priority directions to overcome the shortage

and being aware of its responsibility as a monopolist on amber

of human resources in the industry. In this regard, the task of

extraction in the creation of a transparent, nationally oriented

creating a system of training and involvement of personnel,

sales market, Kaliningrad Amber Factory radically revised the

further training of employees of the enterprise is highlighted.

sale of raw materials policy. In October 2015 the Factory carried

In the spring in Kaliningrad the unique educational pro-

out the first auction on sale of amber which was followed by

gram of training of specialists for amber branch is started.

a substantial increase in cost for amber. Prior to this, the price

The Association of producers and processors of amber branch “Russian amber” and the Western branch of a RANEPA will be engaged in implementation of the program. The Kaliningrad Amber Factory also supported this idea, the management highly appreciated an initiative and especially noted the practical involvement provided by the program. Design, development, production and the organization of test sales of new unique collections taking into account tendencies of world design and fashion will become a kernel of educational process Key feature of the program is that each educational module considers requirements of the enterprises, is developed strictly according to the specification from representatives of amber business and will be is put into operation after careful


is located. Exactly from here the way of one of the most sur-

training for the created functional places.

prising creations of the nature, a symbol of the Kaliningrad

The management of Amber Factory believes that new

region and property of all country – the Baltic amber – begins.

approach in training of experts for amber branch will allow to

Hundreds of thousands tourists a year come from all corners

create unique domestic schools of processing of a solar stone.

of Russia and different countries in order to look at the business card of the region – the Baltic amber and to the most amber


place in the world – the Kaliningrad Amber Factory located

It is no secret that the problem of illegal production is

in the settlement Amber. Guests with great interest visit the

especially actual for the Kaliningrad region. Illegal getters of

museum of the enterprise and observation deck of Amber pit,

amber here dig day and night dig up fields in search of a stone,

overlooking the world’s largest Primorsky pit, where extraction

leaving behind the holes reminding lunar craters.

is carried out. Here it is possible to try on medieval dresses and

Kaliningrad Amber Factory consistently advocates the

to feel the connection of times – from the Teutonic Order up to

development of a legal amber extraction. By its actions, the

now, and also to find own piece of amber in «the blue earth».

illegal mining not only affect the market price of amber, which

There is also Amber pyramid – a unique construction for build-

adversely affects the conscientious recyclers of «solar stone»,

ing of which 800 kg of “a solar stone” were spent.

but also causes irreparable harm to the environment.

Amber Factory for many years is among the three most

Today in Russia at the legislative level criminal liability

popular tourist objects in the region.

for illegal production is imposed. Such measure will allow

Everyone who visits Factory undoubtedly takes away many

to reduce significantly volumes of illegal production and to

good impressions. After all, not without reason amber is called

reduce number of the citizens involved in this business. For

“gift of the sun” and is ascribed many surprising properties. It

someone it will be a warning and will deter from participation

is considered that to give amber as a gift means to wish good

in illegal production of amber.

luck, and nowadays in many countries amber – is a sacred stone which besides possesses curative properties. Wear amber,


admire it, and it will surely give you pleasant emotions, health and good luck!

Those large-scale changes that have occurred in recent years in the Russian amber industry, had a positive impact on the tourist flow. Kaliningrad region – a unique subject of the Russian Federation. Being the westernmost region of the country and the European enclave, the area has great potential and rich history. Undoubtedly, a symbol of the Kaliningrad region is amber – property of the region and pride of the country. After all, exactly there are about 90 percent of world reserves of “a solar stone”, and exactly here, in the settlement Amber, the unique enterprise for amber production – Kaliningrad Amber Factory

Kaliningrad Amber Combine is organising the First Annual Economic Amber Forum – 2016 The Forum is planned to be the effective platform for the joint development of amber industry. The Forum will address the latest trends and solutions in extraction and processing of amber, new vectors of amber use, market channels, and so on.As part of the Forum, there will take place the exhibition for presenting Russian and foreign amber articles and technologies, sharing best practices, establishing a comfortable platform for effective communication among exhibitors, the State, business environment, and end users.

Exhibitors will be able to enjoy a cultural programme which will involve art installations, concerts, performances, tours, closed evening parties, and more. For participation, please contact us by e-mail: or by phone: +74012310855; +79622607001 Date: September 2016 Host city: Svetlogorsk Site: Amber Hall



checks and tests. Actually, it is system of target personnel


Although they have been creating jewellery for 25 years, it was last year that turned out to be a breakthrough in their career. Today they say that they feel more satisfied with their work, however, in order to achieve this they have had to revise many decision that they had made earlier.


an Interview with Jolanta and Andrzej KUPNIEWSKI By Anna SADO

petitions – both individually and together. Probably

everybody knows who you are and what kind of jewellery you create. Andrzej: We have an impression that we’ve been on fire for 25 years (laughs). At least this is what we keep hearing everywhere. The world is changing dynamically, and we have to keep up with those changes if we want to be noticed. That’s why in the last few years we have decided to revise certain assumptions and as a result of that we have limited our trade activity to a gallery with a workshop. Thanks to that we have been able to concentrate on what is most important to us, that is conscious brand building, and at present, rather strengthening the brand of our jewellery and gallery. We didn’t have to wait long for the results: our style has become recognisable, the gallery is the place of many interesting conversations and the origin of a number of artistic concepts. We have more satisfaction from life, and this is reflected in our works. Jolanta: For the last four years we have been very

engaged in the activity of the Goldsmithing Artists’ Association (GAA), an organisation affiliating Polish artists and jewellery designers. Andrzej is the Chairman of the Programme Board, and I work in the management. As a result of that our life, both private and professional – has become even faster. While initiating new projects for the GAA, as well as taking part in exhibitions, competitions and workshops we make many contacts with related creative environments, as well as museums and galleries. Since then, we have been exhibiting at trade fairs more often. Andrzej: All of this is really fascinating and gives us inspi-

ration for new activities. Our increased activity in the environment has also resulted in better recognition of our works and the new, often non-jewellery inspirations have led to interesting works, as the prizes have shown. 2015 brought us – together and individually – two distinctions and one prize in competitions organised at the leading trade fairs in Poland – Amberif, Ambermart and Gold Silver Time. We also had an individual exhibition at a prestigious gallery YES in Poznań – thanks to Jola who was awarded the first prize in the contest for GAA members “Gramy 925”( 925 Grams). Yes, it was definitely a good year for us. Thanks to those prizes and distinctions many people have found out that Jola creates jewellery. Jolanta: And to think that I was the first teacher of the

craft to my big, goldsmithery family (laughs). Including Andrzej (laughs). I had taken time off active goldsmithery work because up until recently we had slightly different




ecently you have been on fire, winning prizes in com-


assumptions concerning our work. From the moment when

One of the most recognisable of your clients is

we started running only one gallery with a workshop, I have

Elżbieta Dzikowska, who was also the star of the show at

had more time to realise my own projects too. Two years ago

the Amberif 2015 trade fair. Where did the idea to invite

my goldsmithery activity was limited to supporting Andrzej

her come from?

in designing and creating custom made jewellery for the cli-

Jolanta: We met Elżbieta Dzikowska, a charismatic Polish

ents who preferred my style. Participating in competitions

traveller and photographer, at a vernissage of her photog-

began together with our membership in the GAA: I felt that

raphy. After a year we created a large jewellery collection

as a member of the management I have to set a good exam-

for her, framing her rare stones, amber or her extraordinary

ple. It turned out much better than I’d expected (laughs).

boulders, whose value was not in the price, but the beauty

The works signed with your name - Kupniewska and

of the findings. Very quickly it turned out that we perceive

Kupniewski have very similar character and style – do

jewellery in a similar way: we don’t acknowledge any limits in

you perceive jewellery in the same way?

scale (laughs). We have designed about a hundred necklaces,

Andrzej: We have been married for 30 years, we are

bracelets and rings for her so far. Some of them have been

together 24 hours a day and we live in a unique symbiosis –

featured in her impressive album “The Jewellery of the World”.

it is also reflected in the style of our jewellery. For years, we

Andrzej: The show of our jewellery at the Amber Look

have been designing jewellery in various shades of grey,

Gala in Gdańsk was based on her outstanding photographs

through to black. The surface is usually subdued with deli-

from her journeys, to be more precise the world seen from

cate Bliks. We like to perceive jewellery as a monochro-

above, from a hot air balloon. That was the title of the show

matic picture, with thick grain. Most of our design works

too. We have created a jewellery collection with ethnic,

are created in our workshop, first in a sketchbook, then we

simplified and geometric shapes, inspired by a drawing of

have a brainstorming session: we draw the theme, details

a dried up river. We converted Elżbieta Dzikowska’s inge-

are created, only to be reduced to the necessary minimum

nious photo frames into jewellery. In order to add personal

a moment later. Minimum is actually one of our favourite

character to the catwalk I composed music together with

words (laughs). Although we look at jewellery in a similar

my friend Grzegorz Zyśk. Elżbieta Dzikowska’s reaction to

way, Jola’s projects are more delicate, perceived by a female

my request to take part in the show showed typical for her

eye, and I prefer particular, often solid forms. They are the

sense of humour, she said: “Finally I’ll get to be a model!”.

resultant of our interests and personalities.

The professionalism and impetus of the Amber Look encour-

You also run the Project Gallery together: for over

aged us to accept the invitation to take part in the event in

20 years of its activity its character has changed a bit.

2016 as well. A new, dynamic collection of jewellery to be

Today it is a gallery with jewellery by various Polish crea-

presented on the catwalk is already being created.

tors and designers, combined with a workshop.

What have you prepared?

Andrzej: Currently, the gallery follows the workshop’s

The tile of the collection is Asymmetry and is meant to

rhythm. In the many years of its existence we have gathered

emphasise the asymmetric cuts of the dresses by Joanna

a considerable group of customers who visit our gallery reg-

Weyna. In this way we want to refer to the show we pre-

ularly: they like the style of our jewellery, but also the atmo-

pared together last year, by highlighting the characteristic

sphere of the place. Currently it is one of the few galleries

feature of her outfits, and at the same time summarise our

in Poland where conversations about jewellery, art, music

style which for the last few years has been evolving towards

or photography virtually never stop. In this way we try to

combining various branches of art and inspiring creators,

foster good old traditions, which we had a chance to learn,

with whom we have had the pleasure of cooperating. The

and which today seem to be going out of style. Actually,

shoes for the show were created at Adam Kuty’s workshop

that also refers to galleries that seem to disappear one after

and are handmade, according to old traditions, but with

another. In a time of commercialism and product seasonal-

a new concept in patterns, which will add a bit of grunge

ity our ambition is to spread the love of unique jewellery.

style to the silhouettes in light fabrics of strong colours. The

Jolanta: After years of cooperation with many artists,

whole will be completed with hats by a famous designer

whose works are still in our product range, we realise the

from Gdańsk, Beata Miłogrodzka – modernistic but at the

majority of orders ourselves. We regularly create projects

same time, of course, asymmetric. All elements have been

dedicated to individual clients – as this is how we under-

selected so as none of them dominates, but rather they cre-

stand jewellery exclusivity.

ate a coherent whole.


And what will the jewellery be like?

The collection for the Amber Look 2016 will be a continuation of the trend from last year: the assumptions are, typically for us, ethnic, but with a visible industrial accent, sharp cuts in silver and smoothed line of stones – we have combined amber with other stones that complement its colour. This, in turn is an early indication of our show next year, which will be prepared by Jolanta and our daughter Nina, together with her friend Dario Dalessandro. “The young� are the authors of a popular amber tampon, the first prize in the Amberif Design Award 2014, and they want to show that they have not wasted either the prize or time.






“A Small Town Jigsaw” (including 4 brooches) – silver, anodized aluminium. 1st prize in the 1st International Competition of Goldsmithery Art in Legnica – “Colour”, 1988 Legnica

EVERYTHING IS STILL AHEAD OF US – an Interview with Zofia and Witold KOZUBSKI 35 years of designing and creating small forms is a lot of time. Does the way of thinking about jewellery rooted in the 1980s. stand a chance of succeeding today?

in our “bird-like” works we were able to realise the concept of the competition whose theme was “Circus”. It also made it possible for us to refer to the so-called “Polish poster trend”. We have paid homage to the renowned poster maker, Janusz Młodożeniec who operated a similar means of expression in

Interview by Anna SADO

his works. In this case our work was not a sure-fire hit. In our case we always look for a good idea first, which fits

You won the first price in the last year’s edition of

in the theme of a competition – we think what message we

the Presentations competition – you made your works of

should include and in which form to express it. Only then do

your favourite material – aluminium.

we look for a material or technology that will let us realise

That’s right, many of our projects are made of alumin-

the idea in the best possible way. We often take part in com-

ium, as this material gives unlimited possibilities of chang-

petitions as we like artistic challenges, and the technological

ing the colour. By using a soft, colourful line, which is used

ones even more. Such an approach motivates us to discover new ways of expression. Is there always a message?

“Have a Good Life” – earrings: paper, silver, steel cable. 1st prize in the competition “Towards Japan”, 1988 Warsaw, Bożena Marka’s Gallery

Yes. There always has to be something. Not art for art’s sake. What is the message in birds? We love them, feed them, watch them. They impress us as a symbol of freedom. Two most important distinguishing marks of your jewellery: aluminium and birds. Birds is made of aluminium because it is light and colourful, just like them. Unfortunately the material has become a bit a bane for us. Firstly because we’re associated only with it, even though we work with other materials. Secondly because clients are apprehensive as they still don’t really know it. Yes, they like the jewellery, but when they hear aluminium, sometimes they


assert that it is a craft. Thus we are somehow hanging in a

perspective, we come to the conclusion that the goldsmith-

vacuum, a bit as if we didn’t exist… We don’t want to sound

ery environment has not managed to “teach” the Polish soci-

like grumblers, though – we like making jewellery and we will

ety to receive jewellery. Currently hardly anybody knows the

keep doing it. We’ll continue to take part in competitions, as

designers’ names and few people appreciate hand made prod-

competing gives us a lot of pleasure. 35 years together in life and at the workshop. What

ucts. In our gallery the clients ask directly why the products

is it like?

are so expensive, as soon as they find out that they are Polish. Meanwhile we try to make a living by producing jewellery.

We met at the end of 1970s. in order to prepare a project

At famous brands’ shops, where often such a ques-

for a cinema in Łomża. Zosia had already interiors, neon sings,

tion would be more justified, the clients would rather

furniture and other things in her portfolio. I dealt with inte-

not dare ask it.

rior design too, and was making my first jewellery attempts,

Polish society is getting richer, and is keen on buying jew-

gradually involving her too. Back then many educated artists

ellery by foreign brands. At the same time really talented and

– sculptors, painters and architects – learnt to make jewel-

gifted Polish goldsmiths often have to make jewellery goods

lery, as getting anything realised in the public sphere was a

to order for some apparently popular ladies who despite not

borderline miracle. This is how artistic glass, as well as small

having a clue about designing and hand making jewellery

usable objects or unique pieces of furniture, was created. For

know perfectly well how to sell it under their own name. We’re

us, jewellery gave us the artistic freedom that we were striv-

living in a strange reality… We cannot resist the feeling that

ing for – we could finally decide not only about the project,

everything’s been turned upside-down… We have won so

but also its realisation. For over 30 years we have been signing

many competitions… We wonder if our work would be appre-

our works together, which means that we constantly have to

ciated more if we lived in Western Europe... Probably so, if our

reach an artistic compromise. Though, with time it’s been more

talented jewellery designers are appreciated there, and their

and more difficult to reach... However it also has its charm… You have a clearly specified vision of your jewellery.

works are bought. Do you feel disappointed?

Have you ever happened to do something against your

Now, after over 35 years devoted to jewellery – to be pre-

aesthetic and artistic values?

cise, to small sculptural forms – we sometimes wonder whether

No, but everything is still ahead of us. We might start work-

the choice of such a niche activity, especially specialising in

ing in amber, which we completely don’t feel, and what we

such an atypical material was not a mistake after all… Our dis-

can see in many works we perceive as “tree root sculpture”.

appointment is deeper due to the fact that jewellery creators

Every year we promise to ourselves that we will break out of

are not considered to be artists in Poland: art historians claim

our comfort zone and design something with amber. Who

that it is a branch of design, however the design specialists

knows, perhaps this year we’ll finally manage…?

Peacock brooches – silver and enamel from the jubilee individual exhibition “Birds and Other Flying Objects, that is 25 years of work together”, 2005 Cracow, Bielak Gallery.

“Cat Dreams” – silver, plexiglass. Honorary award in the competition “Artist’s Personality”, 1988 Warsaw, Art Gallery


A work with no title – 4 brooches: anodized aluminium, silver, stainless steel. 1st prize in the competition Presentations “Circus”, 2015 Warsaw, trade fair Gold Silver Time.


decide not to buy it. Looking at the problem from a broader


GOLD SILVER TIME for the 17th Time Press release by GOLD SILVER TIME press office

recognised the world over. You can see their latest designs at GOLD SILVER TIME.

The 17 GOLD SILVER TIME International Jewellery and Watch Fair will take place 29 September – 1 October 2016, for the second time in its new location: the MT Polska Exhibition and Congress Centre in Warsaw. th


GST will be accompanied by a rich framework programme of side events, as always with a strong focus on contemporary jewellery art with the Presentations, Master of Gold, Silver, Time and 3D Space and SILVER post-competition exhibitions. The subject of this year’s exhibition developed by the PAN Polish Academy of Sciences’ Museum of the Earth in Warsaw

new location at the modern MT Polska Exhibition

will be the ancient and contemporary methods of amber

and Congress Centre with its spacious hall has


met the expectations of last year’s GST participants, winning

The preparations for the next edition of GST are under-

them over with its modern vibe. This is precisely where the par-

way. The organisers, the MCT International Fair Centre and

ticipants of the 17th GOLD SILVER TIME Fair will meet: exhibitors

the PSP Visual Arts Studio, have made it their goal to expand

who will present their latest in amber, designer, art fashion,

the number of exhibitors at GST and to further enhance the

silver and gold jewellery, joined by buyers who will come to

show’s brand in Poland and internationally.

make their orders before the coming holiday season. Just like last year, the strongest contingent will be the Pendant by Dorota SZYMANIAK-CENECKA

Polish amber jewellery companies who will present a broad array of what both state-of-the-art industrial works and small studios with the highest standard of handicraft can offer. As always, there will be an extraordinary range of pieces by Polish jewellery artists and designers who are distinguished by their creativity and innovative approach to jewellery and

17. GOLD SILVER TIME International Jewellery and Watch Fair Thursday, 29 September – Saturday 1 October 2016 MT Polska Exhibition and Congress Centre ul. Marsa 56C, Warszawa ›



THE VERDICT of the Jury of the AMBERIF DESIGN AWARD 2016 20 International Competition for the Design of Jewellery with Amber issued on February 13, 2016 in Gdańsk THE JURY:

At the session of February 13, 2016 in Gdańsk, the Jury assessed 92 works submitted by 75

yy Ms. Heidemarie HERB – Germany/Italy

artists from 19 countries: Austria, Belgium,

yy Ms. Danuta CZAPNIK – Poland

Brazil, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France,

yy Ms. Adriana LISOWSKA – Poland

Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Poland,

yy Mr. Nicolas ESTRADA – Colombia/Spain

South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Ukraine, United Kingdom, USA in the Competition with the topic

Mr. Nicolas ESTRADA was selected Chairman of the Jury.


The Jury awarded the following prizes:

THE GRAND PRIZE sponsored by Mr Paweł ADAMOWICZ, the Mayor of the City of Gdańsk PLN 10,000: Jolanta KUPNIEWSKA, Warsaw, Poland A reversal of materials, where gold is set in amber. A clash of a raw amber nugget with a rough-hewn gilded piece of silver. Characteristic transition from the transparent to the opaque in combination with an interesting architectural form.

THE AMBER PRIZE sponsored by the INTERNATIONAL AMBER ASSOCIATION 1 kg of amber : Jelizaveta SUSKA, Mölndal, Sweden/Latvia The jury liked how the patinas transition into amber and the copper holds the amber. The texture of the crust of the copper melts into the texture of the crust of the amber.


Kinga SULEJ, Dłutów, Poland Very organic, like a lichen. There is a transition of the blue into yellow-green amber. From soft texture into harsh, broken, aggressive edges.

The Jury decided to award three honorary mentions to the entries which best evoke what the topic of TARNSITION brings to mind:

Kim Ji Young, Tanhyeon, South Korea Excellent creative process as transition. Emilia Kohut-Jeż, Gdynia, Poland Colours, form, material and amber fixed in a harmonious way. Artificial resin transitions into natural amber.

Agnieszka GRUPA, Karolina MATEA, Gdańsk, Poland A strong expression of transition with great sensibility. As if it were created by nature not by a human being.



THE SILVER PRIZE 1 kg of silver:


Designer Łukasz IRCHA


The 23rd International Fair of Amber, Jewellery and Gemstones

Amber &Fashion Gala AMBER LOOK TRENDS & STYLES 2015, jewellery: Dorota Cenecka GIN Atelier, fashion: Joanna Błażejowska ASKA

Press release by AMBERIF PRESS OFFICE On 16 March, the 23rd edition of AMBERIF, the International Fair of Amber, Jewellery and Gemstones, will begin at AMBEREXPO Gdańsk. It is the most important amber exhibition and the largest jewellery event in Central and Eastern Europe. New jewellery designs and trends will be showcased by 480 companies from 14 countries. The organisers expect several thousand visitors from all over the world. The event will have its highlight in the evening AMBER LOOK trends & styles 2016 Amber and Fashion Gala.

the latest trends and technologies in jewellery design are presented to captivate with a wealth of inspiration, bold associations and stunning combinations of materials. “Amberif provides a direct contact to customers, there’s nothing more valuable,” emphasises Daria Jankowiak of the Motyle Jewellery Studio. “I always make a new, specially expanded collection for Amberif. This year, I’m paying homage to the natural. My pieces have imprints of leather—real, sometimes ugly and wrinkled—like in real life.”

AMBER LOOK The AMBER LOOK trends & styles Amber and Fashion Gala,


ompanies from Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic,

combined with the AMBER LOOK PROJECT award presenta-

Ethiopia, Germany, India, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Russia,

tion, is a place to look for perfect harmony between contem-

Turkey, the UK, the USA and Poland will have the oppor-

porary jewellery and fashion design and always generates

tunity to exchange experience, establish new business rela-

strong emotions. “Fashion perceives amber differently than

tions and get to know the current jewellery fashion trends. The

jewellers and this exchange of experience between industries

exhibitors include mainly manufacturers of amber, gold and

communities is priceless,” emphasises Michał Starost, the pro-

silver jewellery and jewellers working with precious stones

ject’s artistic director. “This year, the event’s leitmotif is pure

and diamonds (Amber Halls A & B, Silver Hall B and Gold Hall

form, softness, natural quality, closeness to nature, floristry.

C). “We have combined the entire production cycle under one

Of course we put a premium on diverse and plentiful designs

roof,” says Ewa Rachoń, AMBERIF Director. On the one hand,

to pique the interest of our guests. The collections are excel-

we have artists with their heads in the clouds who create mar-

lent and sought after, straight after our show they travel to

vels out of amber, silver and gold, on the other—those who

more fashion events. AMBERIF is a trade-only event, addressed to individ-

manufacture complex precious metal processing equipment.”

uals and businesses who trade in jewellery, jewellery art


and functional art.

AMBERIF is one of the key settings for the jewellery indus-

AMBERIF 2016 |

try to meet. Here business meets art, creative ideas are born,



THE MAJOR REPRESENTATIVES OF THE AMBER BUSINESS IN THE WORLD Are Joining an Association “Le'amber Consortium” president Algis Bitautas

The members of the newly established Association “Le'amber Consortium” introduced themselves with their jewellery products at the biggest stone exhibition in Beijing (China) at the end of 2015 for the first time. This Association unites the major representatives of the amber business in the world in hopes of bringing more clarity to the market.

the Association. Disruptions in the raw amber supply from Russia at the of 2013 have left amber processors without steady supply of raw amber, thus the processors are forced to work using the current stocks or repurchase the raw material from others. “Now we live in a complicated period in the amber market. This business has become disorganized, buying raw material directly from the suppliers is complicated, thus an idea to establish an association has come to our minds. We seek to

By Virginija ZYGIENE


incorporate major Russian companies as well as processing companies in the Region of Kaliningrad and to implement

main goal of the newly established Association

common strategic goals together”, A. Bitautas continued.

is to unite the major representatives of amber

Currently “Le’amber Consortium” unites 5 members from

extraction, production, and trade as well as to establish them

China, Hong Kong, and Lithuania. UAB “Beata Amber Holding

the most favourable conditions for independent develop-

Company” led by A. Bitautas has brought under its wing com-

ment and expansion of the business”, said Algis Bitautas, the

panies operating all over the world and it is one of the initia-

President of “Le’amber Consortium”.

tors of establishment of the Association.

A. Bitautas has been developing the amber business

“It is not an association accepting everyone who wants to

for almost three decades already and he told us that the

join it – the company must be a major player and have exten-

current situation in the market has encouraged him to join

sive experience in this business. However, this does not mean

“I HOPE THAT THIS AMBER SEASON WILL TURN TO NORMAL and we will forget those two past years as a horrible nightmare.”


material in the market but because there is no stability in it

the big companies leaving the small companies behind. The

and no clarity of what to expect. Large factories and major

Association also maintains relations with associations in other

processors cannot accumulate larger stocks of the goods

countries uniting small processors. Currently we are conduct-

because they do not know what prices of raw amber could be

ing negotiations with associations of the small amber proces-

expected in future and fear incurring particularly high losses

sors not only in Russia but in China as well”, said the President

unexpectedly as a result of this.

of the Association.

“Thus it is very important for the Russian companies, as one of the major players in the amber market, to become members


of the Association. The Russian companies perfectly under-

According to him, the main goals of the Association include

stand the situation in the market because they incur losses as

seeking for improvement of the conditions for amber extrac-

a result of drop in the raw material prices as well. The season

tion, production, and trade as well as operational efficiency

in the amber business starts in March and we really hope to

of the members of the Association, providing support to the

start it by having reached some agreements with the compa-

members of the Association and to take care of marketing

nies in Kaliningrad: they would become full members of our

of its members as well as search for new markets. “Le’amber

Association and we would be able to plan and implement the

Consortium” will also represent the members of the Association

made plans together”, said the President of the newly estab-

not only in their relations with international and other organi-

lished Association.

zations and individuals but also with public authorities.

Another goal of “Le’amber Consortium” is to promote amber

According to A. Bitautas, the Association seeks to make

and amber-related business, to introduce the latest technolo-

sure that quota of raw materials (quantity), its price and deliv-

gies in amber processing. “We want to attract young people

ery would be established just like in the case of the oil sector.

who would start building their own business themselves. The

“Currently the Asian countries are the major buyers and consum-

amber industry is not so big, but it is fading. We also invite

ers of raw amber, it is supplied to them by various agents and

other associations operating in Lithuania to cooperate with the

profiteers from Russia that are not even related to the amber

Association, we try helping them with raw materials and other

business. The same methods are also used by the Ukrainians as

issues as much as we can. We are discussing supply of raw mate-

currently Ukraine is an active participant in the market of raw

rials on consignment basis as a future option”, said A. Bitautas.

amber. This resulted in a situation that large amounts of raw amber accumulated in China and other Asian countries causing many problems to amber processors, especially large factories. If we compared the price of raw amber in 2013 and the current price in the market, you would see that it has decreased by approximately 30 percent”, explained the interlocutor. For example, “Beata Amber Holding Company” factories in China (established in cooperation with partners in China) employed approximately one thousand employees in 2014 but now there are only approximately 500 of them. The number of employees reduced by half not because of lack of raw



that the primary concern of “Le’amber Consortium” is only


Beata Amber Factory (China) Building 76, New Sun Industrial City, No.3, XinFa Road, Lincun, Tangxia Town, Dongguan.


The population in the Asian countries are particularly fond

A. Bitautas could probably be referred to as the initia-

of all natural stones and considers amber to be a sacred stone,

tor who took the Lithuanian amber from the market place in

they value it as an expensive item and an investment with a

Palanga and brought it out into the world. He participated

long-lasting value, thus they pass amber and its products to

in the international exhibition in Hong Kong in 1990, when

their relatives (children, grandchildren, etc.).

he was still a student, and presented the Lithuanian amber

“Currently approximately 80 percent of all raw amber

products there.

to be processed and amber products are sold in the Asian

“It was difficult in the beginning, people were not really

countries. The market still has a definite potential for growth

lining up to cooperate with us, companies from Denmark,

because only approximately 20 percent of the Chinese mar-

Germany were already well-established there. Nevertheless it

ket has been glutted, so there is still lots of work to be done

took a couple of years of meticulous work but we managed to

here. Interest in amber is now growing in India as well, thus

find our buyers”, the interlocutor remembered the old times

I believe that India will become a major consumer of amber

and start of the business.

after approximately 5 or 10 years”, the entrepreneur shared

UAB “Beata” was established in 1988 in Vilnius and it

his thoughts on the market.

has become known as one of the oldest companies in Lithua­ nia engaged in manufacture of jewellery. During all this time


the name of the company as well as the name of “Beata Amber

A. Bitautas is glad that such a small country like Lithuania

Holding Company”, that has united it and other companies,

is able to organize such an exhibition and attract guests to it.

has become well known and valued not only in the native coun-

This is a big plus. On the other hand, an exhibition in Gdansk

try but also in Asia, the Far East, Europe and the Western coun-

(Poland) starts right after “Amber Trip” and many buyers are

tries. Currently we have representative offices operating in Japan

not always willing to come to an exhibition in Lithuania.

(Tokyo), USA (Los Angeles), Denmark, China, and Hong Kong.

“Giedrius Guntorius, the organizer of “Amber Trip”, deser­ves

“Beata” used to be engaged in wholesale trade of amber

appreciation that, despite of such complicated circumstances,

but in 2002 it opened a chain of stores (currently it consists of

he still manages to attract buyers to Lithuania where most

22 amber jewellery stores) and established an amber design-

of the manufacturers are small local businesses. For instance,

ing studio – the first studio of this type in the world. A piece

in the exhibition held in Gdansk small manufactures fade

of jewellery is made right from the beginning up to the very

within the big mass of participants, whereas in Lithuania they

end in this studio. The designing studio employs 30 talented

are able to directly communicate to the buyers – here the

professional jewellers who make astonishing pieces of art.

environment is much more favourable for this”, the entre-

For instance, red amber was first developed precisely by the

preneur spoke.

designing studio established by this company. “Three of our processing companies have been established in China in cooperation with the local partners and they are engaged in processing of raw amber, production and sale of products”, revealed A. Bitautas.



Jewellery WITH HISTORY-MAKING Interview by Virginija ZYGIENE

Emilija Raginskytė, the winner of the second place in the competition “Priešingybių dialogas” (Eng. – The Dialogue of Opposites) which was held during the International jewellery exhibition “Amber Trip 2015” currently is a third-year student of metal arts and jewellery at Vilnius Academy of Arts (VAA) Faculty of Telšiai. 21-year-old artist’s works include drawings, watercolour paintings, sculptures and jewellery.

 “Censorship” – 2nd place winner in Amber Trip art jewellery contest Object category

I am a person, who becomes bored of one activity quite soon; therefore I am interested in several activities. Nevertheless, jewellery takes the first place in my life, while sculpture, blacksmithing and aqua painting are like hobbies to me. There is no secret that my heart is more addicted to jewellery. I think this is the field, where I am able to express myself best. I am inspired by an idea that one person can create a final piece of art starting from the idea and end-

Why did you choose metal arts and jewellery stud-

ing with its realisation. Jewellery is particularly versatile and I


can express my imagination creatively. Jewellery is also related

Prior to my studies at VAA, I was studying sculpture arts

to product promotion: if you want to be recognised by people,

in Kaunas Art Gymnasium. I intended to link my further stud-

you have to advertise your works and communicate with clients.

ies with this field of art, although sculpture has been like a

How long you are engaged to jewellery and what is your future related to?

hobby to me. Every year, the graduates of Art Gymnasium have to create

I started practicing jewellery just 2 years ago. There are

their final work according to their specialisation. The defence

no jewellery master studies in Lithuania, thus, if I decided to

was held in VAA Faculty of Kaunas, where I met my first teacher

study further, I would choose studies abroad. Currently, I do not

of painting arts, who was interested in my future studies. It

know whether it was jewellery studies or other field – maybe

was the first time I heard about jewellery studies and instantly

something related to marketing the pieces.

I understood that this was the field I was looking for. The

However, I am a person who likes planning own future. I

plans about Lithuanian philology and advertising studies

would like to make arts and be famous not only in Lithuania,

were changed immediately and I started preparing for VAA

but also abroad, as well as focus on own trademark jewellery.

admission exams. My older brother has helped me a lot; he has

My account on social network is called Era, so I would choose

seen himself as an artist from the first grade. He was always

this name as a trademark for my products. I have huge ambi-

an example to me. Currently, Augustinas is an illustrator and

tions, but I would like to realize them in reality by works rather

creates characters for computer games.

than words.

Your works include drawings, watercolour paint-

You are the winner of the second place in the compe-

ings, sculptures and jewellery. What is the closest to

tition “Amber Trip 2015”. Why did you decide to take part

your heart?

in the competition? Have you expected such evaluation?


I feel appreciated that other understood what I wanted to show, and I am pleased with that. I will continue develop-

The requirements of “Amber Trip” competition were to use

ing the same idea in the future, in order to make history of my

amber and the subject “The Dialogue of Opposites”. I had

works and invite a visitor to join my piece of work.

one month and a half till the deadline of the competition. One

On the one hand, it would be a stimulus to compete fur-

month I spent thinking of the idea and what to express in my

ther. Nevertheless, I would to raise a crossbar higher and take

work. I did not want to create an adaptive piece of jewellery

part in the competitions abroad. In fact, I presented the same

or something like that.

work in Legnica as well, however I did not enter the next round. How do you evaluate amber jewellery made by Lith-

My aim is to attract a person, since I am interested in per-

uanian masters? Are they are noticed abroad?

son-product interrelation as well as psychology and interactions between individuals. That’s why I have created a kinetic

There were many types of amber jewellery pre-

object – a game between a man and a woman, that I called

sented at “Amber Trip”. Despite the fact, I would

“Cenzūra” (Eng. – Censorship). The piece of amber between

like to see somewhat new approach to amber - to

a man and a woman means censorship, a certain subject or

show that amber can be used not only in necklaces

field which is acceptable to one side only. The thimbles for

or pictures. I tend to conceptual jewellery more.

different gender visitors’ fingers used during the game mean

Are our jewellery masters noticed abroad?

stylized characters of a man and a woman. When one opens

I think that the masters are lacking incentives

a mouth, the amber, which means censorship (taboo), goes

and stimulus, self-confidence, as well as resources

to another and vice versa. When creating this object it was

for promotion or participation in international

the first time I had to work on wood processing – to carve

exhibitions. A participant’s fee can amount even


to thousands. Do you have any other hobbies?

I arrived to Vilnius to see what other have created. At that time I did not imagine what pieces of art are exposed by other

Creation and sports have been competing

artists in the competition. I thought that the winner will be

for a higher place in my daily life for many years.

an artist, who has created a wearable piece of jewellery and I

I had participated in running and academic row-

also expected somebody of my acquaintances to be awarded.

ing competitions as well as basketball matches.

I returned to the exhibition after the awarding ceremony. When

When I was 13, I focused on sports only, and since

I saw the diploma with my name, I was truly surprised for the

autumn of 2015, when I found a new establish-

recognition and evaluation.

ing rowing base in Telšiai by chance, I am glad to

Is “Censorship” the first your work with amber? Do

return to rowing sports after a 7-year break. Sports, particu-

you enjoy working with amber and what stones do you

larly team sports, are very useful if your everyday activities

like the most?

are related to arts, when you are used to sit alone and create

I already have experience working with amber, e.g. earrings

not surrounded by people. I also enjoy reading and writing. I

and studs, but it was an ordinary way to use the amber. I like

usually read books about psychology and body language. All

this material because it is easy-to-shape and has diverse shad-

of them influence my jewellery as well – I would like to create

ing. After the competition I was creating an interior sculpture

an object or jewellery, which has something in common with

with large amber stones from Curonian lagoon. Working with

a body and its user.

it I felt huge responsibility knowing the cost of such amber pieces. I made over a half-meter height sculpture of iron and granite. Since I have the opportunity to present my works at “Amber Trip” this year, I expect presenting this sculpture as well. I like different stones in jewellery, I have mostly used semiprecious stones in my practice. So far, I am more or less improving my skills, so I rarely use precious gems. In the future, I think that alexandrite, sapphire, ruby, and maybe some rare but less known minerals will be among my favourite gems. Will a prize encourage you to take part in other competitions?



My lecturer told me about the competition. The task was to take part in two competitions in Vilnius and Legnica (Poland).


GENERALLY ABOUT 2015 By Virginija PAVALKIENE, Lithuanian Assay Office


specialists, and invest in expensive equipment which was necessary for the company‘s activities, even though last year there were less prod-

the 1st of January 2015 Lithuania has

ucts provided for assaying, compared to 2014.

adopted the euro. Therefore, the

The Lithuanian Assay Office stamped 1.4 million

Lithuanian Assay Office awaited for the new year

units of hallmarks on products in 2014, and 1.15

in suspense: how will the adoption of the euro

million units of hallmarks were stamped in 2015.

affect the precious metal and gemstone product

As each year, in 2015, the Lithuanian Assay

trade, will people buy precious metal and gem-

Office collected, analysed and systematized

stone products, will it reduce the need for such

Lithuanian retail market prices per 1 gram of

product assay services provided by the company.

the most popular products – gold products with

We can now say that 2015 showed that the

a 585 hallmark and silver products with a 925

economic and social situation in the country


did not really affect the jewellery business: there is always a

In 2015, the price of 1 gram of gold products with a 585

need to dress up and bring joy to each other with jewellery

hallmark ranged from 41 to 130 EUR in the Lithuanian mar-

that has long-lasting value.

ket, depending on the weight, design and other properties

The Lithuanian Assay Office is a state enterprise (state insti-

of the product. The price of 1 gram of silver products with

tution) carrying out the supervision of precious metals and

a 925 hallmark ranged from 3.5 to 11 EUR in the Lithuanian

gemstones in Lithuania. Since its establishment in 1991, the

market, depending on the weight, design and other proper-

Lithuanian Assay Office has never been a budgetary institution,

ties of the product.

i.e., it does not receive any state budget appropriations for the

The average price of 1 (one) gram of gold products with

development of its activities, and sustains itself from the reve-

a 585 hallmark was 58.14 EUR in the Lithuanian retail market

nue generated for provided services of assay and jewel analysis.

in 2015, and the average price of 1 (one) gram of silver prod-

The Lithuanian Assay Office ended 2015 without any losses.

ucts with a 925 hallmark was 5.74 EUR in the Lithuanian mar-

The company managed to retain its qualified and experienced

ket in 2015. In 2015, the need for gemstone identification and characterization services decreased by around 10%.


In 2015, similarly to the previous 2010 – 2014 period, the ratio of silver and gold products provided for assaying remained in favour of silver. A larger part, i.e., around 69% of all products that were


provided for assaying were silver products. A similar trend was observed in 2010 – 2014, despite the fact that the relative amount of silver products continuously decreased during 2013-


2015. We believe that one of the reasons that led to this situa0


tion is the lower (more acceptable for the buyer) price of silver

1 1,5


31 %

C-481/12 of the resolution adopted in 2014 by the European

69 %

Court of Justice, Lithuanian Seimas adopted a recast of the Law on State Supervision of Precious Metals and Gemstones of the Republic of Lithuania (hereinafter referred to as the Law) in November of 2015, which will come into effect on 1 May 2016. The main change in the new law was the rejection of measures restricting the recognition of national hallmarks of European Union Member States. After the law comes into effect, state control hallmarks stamped on precious metal products of all precious metal and gemstone assay state supervision institutions authorized by the European Economic Area

products in the market. However, we cannot say that silver prod-

and Turkey will become valid, if marks of other countries that

ucts are more popular or more fashionable than gold products.

are not understood by Lithuanian consumers will be clarified

As shown by the sales analysis, the demand for gold prod-

in their approved hallmark according to the procedures laid

ucts remains the same. The demand tends to particularly

down in Lithuanian laws. According to the provisions of the new Law, the list of pre-

increase right before Christmas, at the end of the academic

cious metal and gemstone assay state supervision institutions

year (before diplomas are awarded), etc. Often „light“ - fine, puffed products are provided for assay-

authorized by all the countries of the European Economic

ing. This trend of lightweight products can be observed since

Area and Turkey, examples of their stamped state control

2010. It goes without saying that lower weight often, but not

hallmarks and issued quality certificates (and their sample

necessarily, determines lower jewellery prices which are more

translations into the Lithuanian language) will be approved

acceptable for the buyer.

by the Government of the Republic of Lithuania or an institu-

Consumer interest in jewellery marking is noticeably

tion authorized by it.

increasing in Lithuania. There is an interest regarding which

In 2012, legal acts regulating the activities related to pre-

hallmark should be stamped on the product, who should

cious metals and gemstones were reviewed in Lithuania, and

stamp the hallmark, what sign shows the hallmark of the prod-

a number of excess requirements were rejected. Since 2012,

uct, etc. We noticed that most buyers know and understand

all those who wished to engage in activities related to pre-

that, for example, the number „585“ found on a product does

cious metals and gemstones had to submit an application to

not necessarily prove that the product is actually made of 585

the Lithuanian Assay Office in order to register in the register

fine gold, and that numbers alone without a state mark do not

of such business entities according to national procedures,

certify the product‘s purity.

and the Lithuanian Assay office had to assess the provided

Buyers show interest and inquire whether the products

information, examine the application and make an appro-

were tested by the Lithuanian Assay Office and if they are

priate decision (to register/not to register/to unregister, etc.).

labelled with the Lithuanian state control hallmark

Only after a decision is made by the Lithuanian Assay Office,

certifying and guaranteeing that the product is actually made

the business entity can be registered, receive a certificate of

of gold. It is important for consumers to know whether the pur-

his registration and only then engage in appropriate activi-

chased piece of jewellery actually matches the declared hall-

ties. However, the new Law provides that the business entity

mark, whether it is worth buying the product for the offered

who wishes to carry out activities related to precious metals

price, etc. Consumers are also encouraged to take interest in

and gemstones in the Republic of Lithuania will only have to

the meaning of hallmarks stamped on products by following

submit a declaration in the prescribed form of long-term or

a simple folk proverb “all that glitters is not gold”.

temporary or one-time activities related to precious metals and gemstones (hereinafter referred to as Declaration) and, if the


business entity must bear a responsibility mark, the sketch of

In order to ensure the compliance of the Law on State

with the stamp of the responsibility mark (hereinafter jointly

Supervision of Precious Metals and Gemstones of the

referred to as responsibility mark examples), and it shall be

Republic of Lithuania with the practical implementation of

considered that the business entity will carry out his activities

the responsibility mark of at least 2 x 2 cm and a metal plate



the interpretation of EU legislative provisions provided in case


related to precious metals and gemstones on the next day

Business Year signed in 2011 by public supervisory authori-

from the date of the Declaration submission.

ties: the officers of our company provided consultations to

What is important is that the Law does not provide any

business entities who carried out their business activities for

Declaration submission or other tax, i.e., the state reduced

the first year, provided them with methodical assistance, did

the financial burden for business entities who previously had

not apply any strict sanctions (fines, operational restrictions,

to pay the tax.

etc.) even after violations were found, and, instead, provided

In 2015, the director of the Lithuanian Assay Office, within

deadlines to eliminate these violations.

his competence, reviewed the recommendations for the marking and/or application of minor importance accounting by car-


rying out the supervision of the activities of business entities,

From 31 December 2010 to 31 December 2015 registered

which were adopted in 2013 and supplemented more than

business entities increased by 68.7% - from 931 (in 2010) to

once, and which define the complete list of violations. If it is

1571 (in 2015).

determined that the business entity (natural person or legal entity) has made a violation specified in the list, then sanctions


cannot be applied. Instead, a reasonable term is provided to


fix the violations. Just like any other legal acts that regulate


the activities related to precious metals and gemstones, these


recommendations are published on the Lithuanian Assay


Office website


It should be pointed out that business entities do not


actively use the new possibilities, even though their adminis-


trative burden is facilitated each year. For example, since 2012,


it became legally possible for business entities to submit all

2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015

documents to the Lithuanian Assay Office by electronic means

931 1060 1196 1342 1472 1571

via the portal, however, Lithuanian entrepreneurs rarely use the possibility to submit their documents


by electronic means. Currently, the submission of documents in „paper“ form still remains more popular. In 2015, only 2 business entities submitted their documents by electronic means. The company encourages all business entities to use the provided system, thus saving their time and finances. We are


happy to have launched this system and hope that our clients


will show more interest in the technical innovations, enabling


them to manage all their business matters related to precious


metals and gemstones without leaving their workplace, as


well as easily adapt to more favourable and simplified busi-


ness conditions.

2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015

Since 1 January 2013, the Lithuanian Assay Office pub-

38 35 39 18 22 40

lished a list of all newly registered or unregistered business

* - according to the data of the 31st of December of the calendar year

entities in the public register of permits of state institutions The publicity

Increasing competition between business entities that

and accessibility of such information make it possible for ordi-

have many years of experience in the precious metal market,

nary consumers - jewellery buyers to learn more about jew-

market saturation and, possibly, the introduction of a new

ellery sellers and the legality of their activities. A possibility

national currency had an impact on the shutting down of small

is also provided to „check“ the legitimacy of activities carried

companies. Despite this fact, the variety of precious metal

out by one‘s business partner.

offers is continuously increasing. Manufacturers no longer limit

In 2015, the Lithuanian Assay Office continued to work

themselves to the production of standard products and aim

according to the provisions of the Declaration on the First

to achieve originality through the designs of their products.


entities carrying out the aforesaid activities increased by 1,8 times – from 299 (in 2010) to 536 (in 2015).

who carry out activities related to precious metals. Eg., 410

The number of jewellers who produce precious metal and

business entities under the aforesaid status were registered

gemstone products has increased from 256 to 454 during the

in 2010, and 769 were registered in 2015.

period between 31 December 2010 and 31 December 2015.

The number of individual companies did not change

Most of these manufacturers are natural persons who carry

in 2015, compared to 2010: 238 – in 2010, 239 - at the end of

out individual activities. The number of persons who trade in


investment gold has increased in recent years: from 26 busi-

The number of small business owners working under a

ness entities in 2010 to 104 business entities at the end of 2015.

business licence or individual economic activity certificate

Trade of precious metal and gemstone products on the

increased by more than two times - from 258 to 545 during

internet is now becoming noticeably popular. By the end of

the period between 31 December 2010 and 31 December 2015.

2010, such activities were legally carried out by 10 business

As in previous years, retail and wholesale (distribution)

entities, and on 31 December 2015 these activities were legal-

trade of precious metal products remained the main activity of

ized by 155 business entities.

business entities during 2015. The number of companies who

The provided statistics enable to conclude that the

declared such activities increased from 834 to 1330 between

Lithuanian precious metal and gemstone market is growing.

31 December 2010 and 31 December 2015.

Business conditions are becoming more favourable and admin-

The number of pawnshops, which accept precious metals,

istrative burden is reduced for business entities who carry

gemstones and their products as deposits for loans, increased

out these activities. This results in the reduction of shadow

during economic recession and continued to grow in 2015:

economy and protection of the interests of consumers, and

from 195 business entities providing pawnshop services in

this is the most important work direction in the activities of

2010 to 326 business entities at the end of 2015.

the Lithuanian Assay Office.

In 2015, 536 business entities had the right to carry out the activities of buying and selling precious metals, gemstones, their products and scraps. Since 2010, the number of business


Public limited liability companies and/or private limited liability companies are often established by business entities




gallery Putti online store was created in the

presented has grown a lot. The gallery hosts at least four solo

beginning of 2015 with a goal to make Latvian

or group exhibitions per year. The focus always has been on

and international contemporary jewellery

the local artists – Art gallery Putti represents jewellery by

more accessible to its audience in Latvia and all around the

such contemporary jewellery designers as Valdis Brože, Māris


Auniņš, Guntis Lauders, Andris Lauders, Māris Šustiņš and Jānis

Art gallery Putti was established in Riga, Latvia in 2000 so

Vilks – all of them are graduates of the Latvian or Estonian

it has offered contemporary and conceptual jewellery made

Academy of Arts. Different international jewellery artists, as

by local and international artists for around 15 years. In these

Ted Noten, Märta Mattsson, Felike van der Leest, Tanel Veenre,

years the quality and variety of exhibitions and the jewellery

Gigi Mariani, Reka Lorincz and others have had exhibitions in


LATVIAN JEWELLERY REPORT Putti. Because of all of these exhibitions the visitors and cli-

Therefore the hope was that an online store would help cli-

ents of the gallery have been presented with a wide choice

ents to find the right jewellery for them in a more timely,

of jewellery to fall in love with.

convenient and accessible way. Another reason for creating

The gallery has been visited by many people who live

this store was to reach new audiences all around the world –

abroad and a lot of them have been asking throughout the

art je­wellery lovers who have not visited Art gallery Putti, as

years, if it is possible to buy the jewellery online. They may

well as people who are new to the world of contemporary

have purchased a piece from a Latvian jewellery designer and

jewe­llery. The online store was made as a platform for new

they would love to see what this designer will create after a

audience to discover the wonderful artistic approaches and

month or a year, but they do not plan to visit Riga at this time.

exquisite craftsmanship of the artists represented by Art



Valdis Brože, necklace – silver 925, gold 750, serpentine

Andris Lauders, ring – silver 925, gold 750, onyx, ebony

gallery Putti in a manner that would assure enjoyable cus-

much easier for a client to purchase a jewellery piece online if

tomer experience.

they have already been to our gallery or already own a piece

It took a while to go through the decision and execu-

from any of the designers that are featured in our online store.

tion process regarding the technical side of the online store.

They know our brand and the quality of our service as well as

It was difficult to decide whether the online store should be

the quality of jewellery offered, so there is less doubt in the

integrated in Art gallery Putti existing website or should it be

decision process.

made as a separate website – at the end the online store is a

But even for those people who visit the online store and

separate website. By dividing the websites we have improved

are hesitant to buy products because they are not familiar with

the user experience without complicating it. This online store

our brand or the designers – we are very pleased that we are

is made using the Shopify e-commerce software platform

able to introduce them to Latvian contemporary jewellery.

which is a good choice if a business does not have too many

This is one of the gallery`s main goals – to introduce, famil-

specific demands regarding the functionality and design of

iarize and educate the society with the world of contempo-

their online store.

rary and conceptual jewellery. A lot of people definitely still

The online store was launched with four jewellery collec-

don’t see the added value of owning a contemporary jewel-

tions made by beloved Latvian contemporary jewellery art-

lery piece, there is a widely debated question of where and

ists – Māris Šustiņš, Andris Lauders, Valdis Brože and Guntis

whether contemporary jewellery fits in the art world. These

Lauders. Each of these artists has a different artistic approach

original jewellery creations may be observed as art and design

and they all create works of the highest quality. Their differ-

objects as well as complementing accessory that brings char-

ent styles help every person who visits our online store to find

acter to the outfit and can serve as a conversation-starter. So

something to their preference. Over time jewellery pieces have

we are happy to make a glimpse into Latvian contemporary

been added regularly to the online store.

jewellery available around the world.

“We have received a lot of positive feedback regarding our

At the moment we are experimenting by introducing

online store. When we were planning to make it, we did a lot

some non-jewellery products in our store, like wallets or mugs

of research and did not find a lot of possibilities to purchase

made by different Latvian artists – something special that

contemporary jewellery online, so it was a little bit scary to do

still fits with the gallery, but is in a different price range. We

it but looking at all the factors it seemed as a natural step in

also offer some jewellery pieces that are made by our artists

the growth of Art gallery Putti. It definitely has been an excit-

specifically for the online store that are more affordable – it

ing and interesting experience and it does not stop as we like

is easier to commit these purchases without trying the jew-

to try out new things regarding the promotion, entering new

ellery on. In this way we can expand our brand and diversify

markets and the variety of offered products.

the offered products.

We find that many of the clients in Latvia would often take

The world is changing constantly and there are always

a look in our online store at the newest arrivals, find some-

new possibilities emerging, we really enjoy using at least few

thing that they like and then come to the actual gallery and

of them and it is an exciting experience to see where it can

demand this specific product. It still is very important for most

take us and our business.”

of the people to see and try on the jewellery in real life – this

› Visit: – Art gallery Putti online store

is a habit that we already knew and took in consideration. It is


Information provided by the Public Institution “Latvian Assay Office”

Over 2015 the Latvian Assay Office assayed and hallmarked precious metal articles:

Gold – 256 300 items

Silver – 467 300 items

(Total weight: 492,4 kg)

(Total weight: 1383,9 kg)

There are 2042 places of business activities (shops, workshops, places of manufacturing, ect.) registered in Latvia, 220 of them are registered in the last year.


420 000

340 000

260 000

180 000

100 000




Contact: +371 672 10 009 / /



Statistics of the Public Institution “Latvian Assay Office”



A week dedicated to the most exquisite contemporary jewellery


was my first time in the Munich Jewellery Week and I loved it – anyone who works with jewellery

must come to the Munich Jewellery Week. Not only were those days inspirational, but after seeing and talking to so many jewellers in one city I got encouraged to keep on working and spreading the word about an amazing world of jewellery. Big congratulations to the stars of the Munich Jewellery Week! This year at Schmuck 2016 Herbert-Hofmann-Award won: Moniek Schrijer, Jelizaveta Suska and Stefano Marchetti. Talente winners were Edu Tarin and Dovile Bernadisiute Besides the main exhibition and its events over 80 different contemporary jewellery events took place during the Munich Jewellery Week. There is no way you can make it to everyone of them, but Current Obsession has done an amazing job to make it easier to get around Munich with their map and special paper with the “Must-See List” of



famous jewellers.





something mystical about a mass of jewellery lovers going around in the circle shaped exhibition and witnessing how Thomas Gentille reveals the “soul of the material”. Throughout my time there I guess I saw the most smiling faces coming out from “The Big Fish” van. This van would By Lisa WALKER

pop-up at various places of Munich or near the locations of other events and people driven by their curiosity would stand in a queue to see jewellery by Rietveld Academie Jewellery

One of the highlights was the exhibition of the incre­


di­ble jewellery by Lisa Walker at Galerie Biro. New Zealand

Oh! Talking about good experience – “Estonishing!” –

born artist challenges jewellery stereotypes. Her work is a

Estonian jewellery artists exhibition comes to my head.

study into the differences between an accepted notion of

Estonians have already made a name for their great art jew-

beauty or stereo-type, and something else – the search for

ellery, but oh my… seeing all that mastery in one place and

a quality that we hardly ever see, but nevertheless perhaps

people flooding their stand. Definitely proves Galeria Thomas


Cohn booth was one of the highlights of the week. Without further ado, I will allow photos of jewellery from

At the Pinakothek der Moderne, visitors of the Munich

the Munich Jewellery Week speak for themselves.

Jewellery Week got introduced to the great collection of work by virtuous jewellery artist Thomas Gentille. There was

By Jelizaveta SUSKA



By Lisa PLAUT in the Big Fish van




Danish mastery in jewellery, teir taste, their sensation comes from their long goldsmith traditions. However, in this age, when imitation jewellery thrive, it is important to inovate and pursue fresh perspectives to maintain Danish jewellery in a respectable possition among other art forms. Is there a better way to achieve this goal then to strenghten and boost young jewellers? Kjøbenhavns Goldsmith Guild, which was founded in 1429 not only preserves traditions, they actively contribute to innovation of Danish jewellery. The Baltic Jewellery News got an opportunity to interview Master of Guild – Diana HOLSTEN and 2015 Skt. Loye Award winner Christine BUKKEHAVE. “Christine BUKKEHAVE: This recognition has given me the courage to continue that direction, and proved that hard work pays off.”

What is the story behind The Skt. Loye Award?

Diana Holsten: The Skt. Loye Award is meant as an inspi-

Diana Holsten: The Skt. Loye Award was instituted in

ration for the recipient to continue having faith that all his or

1989 on the initiative of the Master of Guild at that time, Ove

her hard work is well invested. The Goldsmith Guilt wants to

Dragsted, and Vice Master of Guild Flemming Hertz in coop-

serve younger talents as an incentive to continue their work

eration with the head of the Goldsmith School, Ib Andersen.

with own ideas and projects of artistic value. Our overall aim

Since 1989, a large number of skilled craftspeople with artis-

with the award, exhibition, and the satellites events created

tic talent and high ambition have won the

by our members, is to present the field’s

award. After 2007 it was paused and in 2012

diversity, proud craftsmanship tradition

there are selected tree nominees and the


prize is accompanied by a main exhibition and

Kim Buck, 1989

satellite events around Copenhagen such as

Flemming Bo Hansen, 1990

group and solo exhibitions, artist talks and

Thorkild Thøgersen, 1991

it returned as every third-year-event. Today

the possibility to visit workshops etcetera. Who was Skt. Loye? Diana Holsten: Saint Loye (lat. Eligius, fr. Éloi), is patron saint of smiths, goldsmiths and farmers and is sometimes pictured with a chalice, a smith’s tools and a horse’s hoof.” Loye was living around 590–660, and trained

Mette Østberg, 1993 Lars Glad, 1994 Laust Balsgaard, 1995 Mette Saabye, 1997 Lasse Bæhring, 1998 Jane Kønig, 1999 Margaret Bridgwater, 2000 Anette Dreyer, 2001

as a goldsmith and was later appointed mas-

Mette Vivelsted, 2002

ter of the mint at the Merovingian court, and

Josephine Winther, 2003

finally became bishop of Noyon. What is the meaning behind this

and passionate artists to a greater audience. Who chooses the winner of this award? Diana Holsten: The board of the Goldsmith Guild set up a jury. The Skt. Loye Award jury of 2015 was: Jorunn Veiteberg, professor and art historian. Tine Kjølsen, Head of School of Design at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. Annette Dam, jewellery artist and Skt. Loye 2012 prizewinner. Nicolai Appel, goldsmith and board member. Diana Holstein, jewellery designer and Master of Guild. The jury select the nominees from a

Kamilla Ruberg, 2004

field of applicants about a year before the

Ane Christensen, 2005

award exhibition. The thee nominees receive

award, what do you think it gives to

Lone Løvschal, 2006

a working grant and create new works for

the winner apart from the financial

Marie Bonfils, 2007

the exhibition – and the Jury select a win-


Annette Dam, 2012

ner based on the works at the exhibition.

Christine Bukkehave, 2015



Diana HOLSTEN – Master of Guild, Christine Bukkehave winner of the 2015 Skt. Loye AWARD and CROWN PRINCESS of Denmark Mary


This recognition has given me the courage to continue

To apply for the Skt. Loye Award, you need to be educated from a goldsmith, art or design school within the last

that direction, and proved that hard work pays off. How did you become a jewellery designer? What/who

6 years. The applicants must be Danish citizens or be living in

pushed you to pursue this path?

Den­mark. What are the criteria of the winner? Which charac-

Christine Bukkehave: I always worked with my hands, and

teristic of jewellery designer is the most important for

never been afraid they would get dirty. I made ceramics, col-

this award?

lages in paper, and I often went exploring on my grandfather’s

Diana Holsten: It is the jury who do the selection and in

workshop with all kinds of little gizmos in different materials,

that sense the jury have an influence on who are nominated

but getting it into the jewelry was actually my mother’s idea.

and who will be the winner of the Skt. Loye Award.

That I began already at boarding school and High School.

It is though, the wish of the guild, to present the many

You were trained as a goldsmith in the Netherlands

components of jewellery art and holloware – craftsmanship,

and acquired your degree in Copenhagen. How do you

artistry and design and that the award is given to a talent

think jewellery design differs in Netherlands and in

who, with vision and unique designs, gives the trade a fresh

Denmark? Christine Bukkehave: I think in Holland you are more

profile. The next Skt. Loye Award – The City of Jewellery will take

“allowed” to think alternative. You think more about the design

place in 2018. My hope is that we will host an exhibition with

and in different options. Although it is a technical jewellery

talented nominees and an international seminar plus a diverse

school I went to in Holland, we started immediately to design

and interesting satellite program, which again will encourage

our own jewelry. Everyone gets the same tasks, but you have

everyone to explore and witness that Copenhagen truly is a

to solve them differently. In this way, you starts to think about

City of Jewellery.

design, material and cost much sooner than in Denmark. In Denmark you are apprenticed to a goldsmith, so its depending on, who you are trained from. Its doesn’t mean that it is a

Christine Bukkehave, congratulations for winning

bad thing, it depends on what you want.

Skt. Loye Prize! What does this recognition mean to you?

You got a degree from Institute of Precious Metals

Christine Bukkehave: It means everything to me person-

in Copenhagen, what do you think this Institute gave to your work?

ally to be recognized by other jewelers who are all at a high

Christine Bukkehave: I learned to express myself by being

professional level. It also means that I more than ever dare to

allowed to experiment in different materials. I was forced

trust my intuitions, and continue to do my thing.

Skt. Loye Prize winning “Tundra” ring

Skt. Loye Prize winning “Transition” pendant


With what material do you like to work the most, when

to challenge myself to the limit. In this way one learned to

making your jewellery?

describe and argue for the choice of shape, size and material

Christine Bukkehave: I’ve always been fascinated by com-

selection. It is a strength that I have used since. Where do you take inspiration for your designs?

bining classic and alternative material. So I cannot just choose

Christine Bukkehave: Mainly I’m very inspired by the

one. In the metal world, I work mostly in silver. It is a great

North. I found inspiration in the cold frozen landscape in com-

satisfaction to solder. In alternative materials I have worked

bination with the minimalist, Scandinavian clean designs. When

intensively with bone, such as horns and teeth. It is a pleasant

I choose my designs, I often look into stories, myths, charac-

material, because it is easy to drill and file in it. Currently, I’m

ters with simple details and abstract forms found in nature.

working with Greenlandic Marble. That’s really nice to polish

An example of this is my latest work, where this applies both

and gives a beautiful pattern.

in material and in shape. I will often try to incorporate a frail

Quite a lot of your jewellery is with amber. How did

and feminine angle to my rough and powerful expressions.

you start working with amber? How amber is different

One of the ways to make the two styles clash is adding feather

from other materials? Christine Bukkehave: I started working with amber at the

light materials and clean looks to some of my work.

Institute for precious metal, and sooner at House of Amber, where I still make unique pieces and collections with amber for them. The amber is filled with history and known as the Nordic gold, which two factors are great inspiration for me, so it was natural for me to use amber in my jewellery. Amber is very characteristic of its weight. It’s incredibly light and it allows you to play with the proportions of your products. Another interesting quality is that every amber piece is unique. You never know what´s inside or what will happen, when you start working with it. If you know the right knowledge, you can get the most shiny high polished amber. It´s really amazing. It’s also fascinating how amber can have different colors, shapes and changing. This provides a wealth of opportunities in the design process, and makes the amber stand out from other materials. “Weeping Tree”, brooch from Cast Away collection



“The three Skt. Loye 2015 nominees: Pernille MOURITZEN, James STOKLUND and Christine BUKKEHAVE”


NOBEL Jewellery Prize 2015 By Sanna SVEDEST edt & Karin Roy ANDERSS on Diagonal

From a tradition started by your’s truly in 2010, it is now time to present the winners of the Nobel Jewellery Prize 2015. Brooch by Lisa WALKER, 2003, glue, gold (24ct) courtesy of The Young, Wellington, New Zealand Private collection

of famous or “quasi-important” people. Parts of the faces have been erased, cutting off some of the information and some of the person’s trademark. Alexander Blank investigates how information is lost and how new information is found again. He has learned to master the skill to capture materials and information and transforming it into pieces that leaves no viewer


indifferent to his work. For this achievement we are awarding

The Nobel Prize in Literature 2015 was awarded to Svetlana

Alexander Blank the 2015 Nobel Jewellery Prize in Chemistry.

Aleksijevitj. By collecting and capturing self experienced stories from people around her she paints a vibrant, honest picShadow, brooches by Nils HINT, 2014, forged iron. Photo: Nils HINT

ture of life as it is. The 2015 Nobel Jewellery Prize in Literature goes to Lisa Walker. This artist assembles objects and pieces from the environment around her. She has a unique eye for details and her work reflects the ambiance of both past and present times.

MEDICINE Jimmy brooch by Alexander BLANK, 2013, high density foam, graphite, silver, paint. Photo: Mirei TAKEUCHI

2015’s Nobel Prize in Medicine was given to William C. Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura for creating a new therapy for malaria and other infections caused by parasites. They have discovered and refined medicines that treat diseases causing suffering and death. Satoshi Ōmura has developed traditional Chinese medicine with modern knowledge making a cure for one of the larg-


est epidemics of our time. We are giving the Jewellery Nobel

Tomas Lindahl, Paul Modrich and Aziz Sancar got the 2015

Medicine Prize of 2015 to Estonian artist Nils Hint.

Nobel Prize in Chemistry. Their research has revealed how

Nils Hint conjoins traditional jewellery with the raw, heavy

damaged DNA is repaired and how genetic information is

aesthetics of a blacksmith. Hint’s jewellery pieces reveal an

protected. This knowledge can for example be used when

unexpected inner nature of the smithery and shows it’s naked

developing new cancer treatments.

beauty. Hint has developed contemporary artwork where the

Alexander Blank is well known for his bold and challenging

silhouettes speak of industrial history and at the same time

artistic expression. In the “Jimmy“ series Blank has used portraits

indicates an interesting and beautiful future.


To the left: My Iron Lung. Pendant by Dauvit ALEXANDE, corroded iron box-girder, silver, polycarbonate reflector material from a crashed car, nickel-silver rods, copper, 9 ct gold, included quartz, tourmaline, amethyst, peridot, emeralds, rare-earth magnet from discarded electric toothbrush, moulded glass doll, brass letter types. Photo: Simon MURPHY (portrait) and Andrew NIELSSON (pendant) To the right: Saint Dauvit: Fragments from the Alter. Pendant by Jan DONALDSON, sterling silver, brass, guitar string, hand-made paper, resin, 23ct gold leaf, “found” brass pins and bell.

 Takaaki Kajita and Arthur B. McDonald have proved that neutrinos have the ability to change identity. Thousands of billions of neutrinos run through our bodies every second. They used to be considered to be without mass but the winners of the Nobel Prize in Physics 2015 have made it clear that they do. This discovery changes our notions about the universe, it’s history and future. The Jewellery Nobel Prize 2015 goes to David Bielander. This artist transforms the core of the material, induce a new quality that totally changes the identity of the material as well as our comprehension of weight, value and substantial structures.

 The Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel 2015 was this year awarded to Angus Deaton. By looking at consumption at an individual level he has mapped out economic patterns. His research gives answers on how to deal


with poverty and to stimulate welfare.

The Jasmine Revolution enabled the build-up of democracy

One of the big problems of today is mass-consumption

in Tunisia in 2011. The Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet was a

and production of unnecessary products. Art jewellery often

strong and important actor in the revolution and in the time of

contains more time, thought and craft than exploitation of

political turbulence that followed. 2015’s Nobel Peace Prize was

natural resources. In the Contemporary Jewelry Exchange

awarded to a group that has created a democratic society that

project jewellery artists are paired up and asked to create an

stands up for human rights, equality and freedom of speech.

individual piece of jewellery especially for each other.

Art Jewelry Forum is stepping up the game of global aware-

By making pieces of jewellery especially for a selected

ness of art jewellery by appointing individuals as AJF ambas-

person, the Contemporary Jewelry Exchange project and the

sadors for cities and countries that have an existing art jew-

publication visualizes the effect of creating custom made

elry scene, but tend to fall in the shadow of larger actors. This

pieces. The Jewellery Prize in Economic goes to an initiative

approach, and the possibility to nominate ambassadors from

that creates custom-made solutions minimizing waste, turn-

a country not yet represented, helps to fill gaps in the jewel-

ing time and thought into objects and makes for sustainable

lery map. To an organisation giving a microphone to a variety

development. That’s it folks. A big thank you to the amazing winners!

of voices – 2016 Jewellery Peace Prize goes to AJF*



Cardboard, bracelet by David BIELANDER, 2015, silver patinated, white gold. Photo: Dirk EISEL


More Baltic exhibitors at Precious By Åsa AXELSON

A fair that is all about jewellery and watches. A fair that is the largest of its kind in the Nordic countries. A fair that is only a couple of hours away. Precious – Stockholm Nordic Watch & Jewellery Fair – is growing and connecting with its Baltic neighbours.

September with dinner, awards, dancing and mingle in a truly fabulous venue. A very exiting part of the fair is the Precious Talents area. New designers from the Nordic countries can apply and those selected will have the opportunity to exhibit free of charge in a dedicated area. Meet the bold, creative and inspiring new talents of the industry!


yy Precious started 27 years ago – it is now the largest Nordic

Baltic jewellers participated in Precious: Kwjatkovsky, Alfredas

yy In 2015, Precious hosted 167 exhibitors from 15 countries

Daulius and Hermis Jewellery. Åsa Axelson, project leader

yy The same year, a staggering 375 brands were represented at


recious – Stockholm Nordic Watch & Jewellery Fair – continues its expansion in all the Nordic countries as well as in the Baltic. In 2015, three exciting

fair for the watch and jewellery industry

for Precious is looking forward to more visitors and exhibi-


tors from Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in this year’s edition

yy The number of countries represented by visiting purchaser

of Precious in September.

increased with 53 % in 2015, compared to the previous year

“Precious is for watch and jewellery stores, artisans and stylists. Visitors get to see brand new collections, meet sup-

Do you want to visit Precious? Go to and

pliers and designers, and make new connections in the Nordic

click “Visitor”. The registration code is PRE16. Please note that

watch and jewellery industry”, says Åsa Axelsson.

this is a trade fair and it is only open to industry professionals.

Precious is held 9–11 September 2016 at Stockholmsmässan

Do you want to exhibit at Precious.

in Stockholm, Sweden. More than 150 exhibitors participate and visitors will be immersed in new designs. And whatever

› Go to and click “Exhibitor”

you do, don’t miss the Precious Gala Dinner on Saturday 10



Do all Finns HIBERNATE? By Antonio ALTARRIBA


quick glance of what the trio has done. The graphic designer is Kimmo Heikkilä. A jewellery book is always welcome, because

was the question that Christopher Zellberger

there are not so many books on contemporay jewellery in

asked in 1997 during the Alchemy seminar

Finland. It is also a good testimony for history of what happens

in Lappeenranta. After a business trip to Germany in 1999

now. As PhD Päivi Ruutiainen writes in the book ” The art world

Mustonen and Heikkilä came to the conclusion that they

has changed a lot in 50 years. When Helena Lehtinen, b. 1952,

wanted to form a jewellery group called HIBERNATE and

applied to exhibitions in the eighties all material was sent in

decided to invite Helena Lehtinen to join the two of them.

paper and by letter, but for Tarja Tuupanen, b. 1973, applica-

Tarja Tuupanen joined the group in 2000. Later on Kimmo

tions has been sent by email”. This book can be ordered via

Heikkilä left the group since he concentrated in new aspects of

their website

art making and also in graphic design and left jewellery aside.

HIBERNATE MEMBERS. Helena Lehtinen is a jewellery artist born in 1952 in Lahti, Finland, where she lives and works. After graduating from Lahti Goldsmith school in 1977 as silversmith she complimented studies at Lahti polytechnics and also at the University of Industrials Arts in Helsinki. She has been teaching parttime in several polytechnics in Finland and also at Konstfack, Stockholm, as a lecturer. Helena Lehtinen’s career is long in jewellery making and during that time she has experimented in many things and ways of doing jewellery. During last years, she is much centred in experimenting with processes and materials. Lehtinen’s work is always in progress, working very sophisticatedly, fusing forms and content, in order to find the boundaries of art beyond simple definitions. She was nomiHibernate; Eija MUSTONEN, Helena LEHTINEN and Tarja TUUPANEN working together. Photo: Hibernate

nated Finland’s jeweller of the year 2015. Jewellery artist Eija Mustonen, b. 1961, began her studies in Ylämaa ( Lappeenranta) in 1981, then studied silversmith-

The HIBERNATE group started organizing exhibitions. It is

ing in Lahti at Goldsmith school and later got her MA degree

well known the big effort and expenses that each artist has to

from the University of Industrial Arts in Helsinki. She is very

undergo while arranging exhibitions. As a group the amount

talented in the art of working with materials. Mustonen has

of work each one has to do is divided and also the expenses

always been very active participating in exhibitions in Finland

are shared. In addition galleries are delighted showing the

and abroad. Currently she holds the post of Fine Arts pro-

work of a group of artists rather than showing solo exhibi-

gram manager at the Saimaa University of Applied Sciences.

tions. I would say that it is the only group in Finland that has

Besides her artistic facet Mustonen has a large perspective

worked together for almost 20 years, of course, sometimes

in contemporary jewellery education, since she has hold a

more actively than others. HIBERNATE has especialised in mak-

teaching post through the years and had the opportunity to

ing exhibitions out of Finland. We could say that they have

cooperate internationally with several universities and pol-

been a kind of ambassadors in jewellery.

itechnics in Europe, USA and Japan.

HIBERNATE has just launched a book of 160 pages and

Tarja Tuupanen, jewellery artist, was born in 1973 in Lieksa,

hard covers, which will be presented in Schmuck 2016, in

Finland. She lives and works in Lappeenranta. Tuupanen stud-

gallery 84GHz. It is written in Finnish and English with texts

ied jewellery and stonework at the South Carelia University

from PhD Päivi Ruutiainen and professor Karen Pontoppidan

of Applied Sciences. She got her Masters degree in 2013 from

of the Academy of Fine Arts of Munich. The images offer a

Konstfack, Stockholm. Tuupanen’s work has been exhibited


Helena LEHTINEN Brooch 2015 mixed media Photo: Lassi RINNO

Eija MUSTONEN Apron 2015 nickel silver Photo: Jesse PYLSY

Consequence, Hibernate exhibition, 84 GHz, Munich Germany, 2015 Photo: Hibernate

around the world. Tuupanen belongs to the Finnish young

It is significant and fundamental not to create ivory towers for

generation of contemporary jewellery artists, who has a free

experimental work. She loves working with the whiteness of

concept on materials and techniques and for this reason she

marble stone, which material she acquires from second hand

does not want to be isolated from other artistic movements.

markets, a way of giving a second life to old objects.


Tarja TUUPANEN Brooch 2013 readymade marble tableware, brass Photo: Lassi RINNO


A WEALTH OF MAGNIFICENT GEMS AND JEWELS The World’s Largest Jewellery Market place in March


Press release by HKTDC

the world’s largest jewellery marketplace, the HKTDC Hong Kong International Jewellery Show and the

HKTDC Hong Kong International Diamond, Gem & Pearl Show

edition of HKTDC Hong Kong International Jewellery Show will

are superb platforms for maximising buyers’ sourcing oppor-

take place from 3–7 March 2016 at the Hong Kong Convention

tunities and expanding exhibitors’ business. In its 2015 edi-

& Exhibition Centre. Around 4,400 exhibitors are expected to

tion, the two fairs attracted over 4,360 exhibitors from 52

gather at the twin shows in 2016, with over 30 pavilions set up

countries and regions, and welcomed 76,000 visitors from

to strengthen its position as the world’s largest international

140 countries and regions, setting a new record. Following

jewellery marketplace. Among exhibitors that have already

the tremendous success, the 3rd edition of HKTDC Hong Kong

confirmed participation are renowned companies including

International Diamond, Gem & Pearl Show will open its door

Dehres, Kuwayama, Lili Jewelry, Roberto Coin, A. A Rachminov

from 1–5 March 2016 at the AsiaWorld-Expo, while the 33rd

Diamonds, Dimexon and Novel Collection etc.


The Jewellery Show features eight themed zones for key market segments to meet buyers’ needs and targets. HALL OF FAME

Presence of the international group pavilions proves again the global influence of the two shows, the line-up includes Brazil, the Chinese mainland, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea,


Myanmar, Singapore, Spain, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Turkey, and the United States etc. The France Pavilion will be making its first debut at the Jewellery Show. Tanzanite Foundation will also set up pavilion of its own at Diamond, Gem & Pearl Show. The two fairs gather altogether 34 group pavilions.

DEBUT OF WEDDING BIJOUX AND T-GOLD+METS PAVILION The Jewellery Show features eight themed zones for key market segments to meet buyers’ needs and targets. Hall of Fame brings together top-tier international brand names in a prestigious and elegant setting. Hall of Extraordinary is an elite section exclusively for high-end fine jewellery pieces. World of Glamour highlights the expertise in jewellery manufacturing of Hong Kong-based exhibitors. Antique & Vintage Jewellery Galleria showcases the glamour of classic jewellery from bygone times. Treasures of Craftsmanship features carvings from precious/semi-precious stones, gold or silver


decorative items, precious ornaments and jewelled accessories. Other special themed zones are Designer Galleria, Hall of Jade Jewellery, and Hall of Time.

WEDDING BIJOUX and T-GOLD+METS pavilion are making their debut this year. The former is specially designed for a stunning range of bridal jewellery. Co-organised by HKTDC, HKJJA and Fiera di Vicenza, T-GOLD+METS pavilion will feature international professional jewellery and watch making machinery, equipment, technology and supplies.

NEW ROUGH STONES & MINERALS ZONE In Diamond, Gem & Pearl Show, Hall of Fine Diamonds shows carat-size loose diamonds to best advantage as well as provides a discreet trading ambience. Treasures of Nature features a rich source of precious stones in many different cuts. Treasures of Ocean features a wide variety of quality pearls. Making its first presence this year, Rough Stones & Minerals will showcase unpolished and uncut precious stones and gems.

LUSTROUS DESIGN TO SHINE The 17th edition of The Hong Kong Jewellery Design Competition – provides a platform for the local jewellery designers to showcase their strengths and talents. The theme of this year’s competition is “Harmony”, as diligence, the can-do spirit and cultural diversity are the foundations of Hong Kong’s prosperity and dynamism. A total of 277 entries are received and the winning pieces will be on display at Hall 1E Concourse during the fair period. Also, the biennial Chuk Kam Jewellery Design Competition is now in its 16th edition. The overall theme of the 2016 competition is ‘Gold 4.0- Innovate outside of the box’ with group themes of ‘Renewed Traditions’, ‘Time and Tides’, and ‘Future Construction’. A shuttle bus service will run between the HKCEC and Asia World-Expo during the overlapping period of the two fairs. A kaleidoscope of events adds colour to the shows, including the opening ceremony, cocktail reception, gala dinner, mini-parades, seminar series, buyer forum and industry experts’ presentations.

TRADE GROWTH IN MAJOR MARKETS In the first ten months of 2015, Hong Kong’s total exports of fine jewellery reached US$ 5.7 billion. The top three markets are the United States, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, collectively accounting for 50 % of the total export value. Hong Kong’s exports to USA and UK increased by 6.5 % and 8.3 %; export to Chinese Mainland noted a significant growth of 28 % over the same period last year.

Ganyklų str. 18, LT-00138 Palanga, Lithuania Tel./fax: +370 460 51230; Mob. +370 698 79791 E-mail:


AMBER EXTRACTION in UKRAINE By Olena BELICHENKO, Ph. D., Amber Expert of IAA, State Gemmological Centre of Ukraine Sites of illegal extraction of amber in Olevsk district Zhytomyr region

In March 2013 in the Baltic Jewellery News an article entitled “Production of amber in Ukraine - Problems and Prospects“ was published, where the author talks about the situation with the production of amber in Ukraine and the ways of development of the amber industry in the country. What has changed in three years?


“Center “Sunshine craft“. Balance reserves 42.5 tons. Industrial development on the deposit began in 2013, about 3.7 tons of amber were produced in total. In 2013–2014, the preliminary geological-economic assessment on the amber of one of the deposit sites “Zolote“ in the Dubrovitsky district of the Rovno region was carried out. The site is classified as industrially significant with previously explored and assessed amber raw reserves of category C2 in

of 2015 in Ukraine four deposits were explored –

number of 74.4 tones. In 2015 prospecting works on a deposit

“Klesovskoye“, “Vilne“, “Vladimirets-Vostochny“,

were continued.

“Zolote“, all of them are in the Rivne region.

In January 2016, the Supreme Economic Court returned

Klesovskoye amber deposit was discovered in 1987, its bal-

to state control the subsidiary company “Ukrburshtyn.“

ance reserves 103.8 tons. Production of amber in the deposit

Subsidiary company “Ukrburshtyn“ of state public limited

began in 1993. From 2009 to 2012, the industrial production

company “Ukrainian Polymetals“ since 2003 has been in a state

of amber was not carried out. In 2013, State Enterprise “Amber

of bankruptcy and since 2005 was controlled by Creditors'

Ukraine“ resumes works on Klesovskoye deposit. During the

committee and sanitation manager, instead of the state. It

period of development, it has produced about 31 tons of

should be noted that the State Enterprise “Ukrburshtin“ has


a special permit for geological exploration and experimental

In 1988–1990, as a result of prospecting and prospecting-

and industrial development of deposit of amber “Alekseevka“

evaluation works the deposit “Vilne“ in Dubrovitsky area was

in Rivne region, of area of one thousand and twenty-seven

explored. In 1992–1999, a preliminary deposit exploration was

hectares (one of the largest in Ukraine). Subsidiary company

carried out, balance reserves 12.3 tons. Industrial production

“Ukrburshtyn“ plans to continue geological exploration of the

at the deposit was not carried out.

deposit in 2016 already under the control of the state.

The deposit “Vladimirets-Vostochny“, located in Vladimirets

Thus, in 2013, legally operating companies produced about

region, was explored in 2008 by limited liability company

7.1 tons of amber.


prospectors, with confiscation of means of production were carried out. Security Service of Ukraine and Ministry of Internal

passed not only the Rivne region, but also parts of Zhytomyr

Affairs of Ukraine began fight against buyers and processors

region and Volyn regions. By estimates of experts, the turn-

of illegally extracted raw materials, liquidation of the border

over of the market of amber, which is not controlled by the

channels of export of amber to the European Union countries.

state in Ukraine can reach 300 million dollars in a year, and the

Thus, representatives of the State border service of Ukraine

volume of illegally extracted amber exceeds at 10–15 times

and the Border service of the Republic of Poland agreed about

legal production.

exchange of information about the facts of smuggling of amber

In 2015, the problem of illegal extraction of amber reached

through joint border. Besides, employees of border services

the level of the country's leadership. In May 2015, the President

of two countries agreed about joint studying of ways and

of Ukraine Petr Poroshenko during the press conference on

schemes of smuggling of amber, as well as about studying of

the occasion of the annual address to the Verkhovna Rada

possible ways of concealment of this stone in motor transport

demanded a speedy adoption of the bill, which is intended to

and freights crossing border. Nearly every week the press ser-

protect the environment and the interests of the state in the

vices of Security Service of Ukraine, Ministry of Internal Affairs

process of production of amber. It should be noted that since

of Ukraine, tax, customs and border service report on deten-

2010 6 drafts of the laws regulating amber production were

tion of consignments of amber.

developed, however all of them were rejected by commissions

However, it is only one of the ways to decrease the level

of experts of the profile ministries as they contained separate

of illegal production and smuggling, a withdrawal of amber

standard and legal shortcomings. In April 2015 the Verkhovna

branch from a shadow is possible only in case of legalization,

Rada adopted in the first reading the Law of Ukraine “About

first of all, of amber production by prospectors.

production and realization of amber“. This law offers an inte-

Thus, since 2013 in Ukraine industrial production of amber

grated approach to the solution of the problems stated above,

was resumed, production is conducted on “Klesovskoye“ and

suggesting solving a problem of employment of illegal pros-

“Vladimirets-Vostochny“ deposits, exploration of Vilne and

pectors by stimulating them to associate in prospecting artels.

Alekseyevka deposits is in progress. However, the creation

It was supposed that after the accounting of all remarks and

of a civilized market of amber in the country requires, first,

offers, the law would be considered at autumn session by the

to address the problem of unauthorized production at the

Verkhovna Rada. Though in October the profile Committee

legislative level.

of the Verkhovna Rada at the meeting supported the bill as prepared for the second reading, most of experts consider that it will not be accepted as the law laid down norms that cannot be executed within the legal deadlines and methods. However, until the end of 2015 the Verkhovna Rada has not reviewed the offered bill. Journalists compare a situation with unauthorized production of amber in Ukraine to war, and experts speak about catastrophic consequences for ecology and economy of the areas captured by amber fever. After an order of the president of Ukraine Poroshenko to take measures to fight against illegal production, buying up and smuggling of amber, tens of detentions of illegal amber

Deposit “Vladimirets-Vostochny”


However, the scale of the illegal extraction is much greater, in 2013–2015 unauthorized prospecting activities encom-


Official Price for raw amber by

Kaliningrad Amber Combine March 2016 AMBER FROM RUSSIA Regular Amber Piece Size

Price/1 kg – EUR

+4 – 11.5


+11,5 faction


+14 faction


+16 faction


+23 faction


+32 faction


2,5 gr. – 5 gr.


4gr. – 25gr.


50 gr. – 100 gr.

not determined

100 gr. – 200 gr.

not determined

200 gr. – 300 gr.

not determined

300 gr. – 500 gr.

not determined

*RUB/EUR exchange rate on 26th of February 2016


March 2016 AMBER FROM RUSSIA Regular Amber Piece Size

Price / 1 kg – EUR

+5 faction


.+6 faction


+8 faction


+11,5 faction


+14 faction


+16 faction


2,5 gr. – 5 gr.


5 gr. – 10 gr.


10 gr. – 20 gr.


20 gr. – 50 gr.


50 gr. – 100 gr.


100 gr. – 200 gr.


200 gr. – 300 gr.


300 gr. – 500 gr



4300 3900 3500 3100 2700 1900 1500 1100 700 300

2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03

If you have any questions concerning these prices, please, contact our office:


The Worldwide Price for Raw Amber


The Worldwide Price for Raw Amber March 2016 AMBER FROM UKRAINE Regular Amber Piece Size

Price / 1 kg – EUR

2,5 gr. – 5 gr.


5 gr. – 10 gr.


10 gr. – 20 gr.


20 gr. – 50 gr.


50 gr. – 100 gr.


100 gr. – 200 gr.


WHITE ROUND AMBER BALLS Regular Amber Piece Size

Price / 1 gr – EUR

5 mm – 7 mm


7 mm – 10 mm


10 mm – 12 mm


12 mm – 15 mm


15 mm – 20 mm


20 mm and larger



Price / 1 gr – EUR

5 mm – 10 mm


10 mm – 15 mm


15 mm – 20 mm


20 mm and larger



Our shops: Klaipeda, Turgaus str.3, t. +370 46 213390, mob. +370 619 55099 Vilnius, Didzioji str. 6, t. +370 5 261 7058, mob. +370 693 04542 Riga, Kramu 4, t./fax. +371 29484807

Beauty and Luxury of Baltic Amber !


The Worldwide Price for Amber

Silver 925 Jewellery March 2016

Amber Silver 925 Jewellery

Price/gr EUR



Machine made






2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03 08 03


Machine made












If you have any questions concerning these prices, please, contact our office:







2014 2015 2016 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10 11 12 01



The Worldwide Gold Price


GLOBAL JEWELLERY MARKET: INNOVATIONS AND OPPORTUNITIES By Jasmine SENG, Industry Research Associate at Euromonitor International

jewellery is relatively more stable compared to that of real jewellery. Given the higher price point, it is not a surprise that the demand for


real jewellery would fluctuate more due to mac-

Not long ago, we rang in the New Year, plac-


roeconomic conditions compared to costume

ing our bets on a recovering US economy and

In today’s volatile economy, jewellery brands

with hopes that the slowdown of the Chinese

need to constantly seek opportunities to grow

economy would not be too drastic. Alas, not only

their product offerings and provide higher value

are oil prices slumping, the volatile equities market in China

for every dollar in order to keep their revenue growth positive.

led to the implementation of a circuit-breaker. Amidst pessimistic economic conditions, the global jewellery industry is


definitely not excluded from its impact. In these dire circumstances, brands need to seek opportunities for growth continuously in order to maintain a healthy balance sheet. This

Growth rates of market sizes based on retail value, measured based on US$ mn, current prices, year-on-year exchange rates.

article will look at how innovation applies to the jewellery market as an area of opportunity.

18 %


Despite being susceptible to economic instability, year-

16 %


on-year growth rates of market size for jewellery in retail value

14 %


(based on US$ million, current prices, year-on-year exchange

12 %

rates) remained positive in 2014–2015 standing at 0.2 %, which

10 %

is the only category within personal accessories that registered


a positive year-on-year growth rate. In comparison, other cat-


egories within personal accessories, such as bags and luggage,


watches and writing instruments, registered -2.2 %, -3.3 % and



-4.8 % year-on-year growth rates, respectively.



However, the rise and fall in growth rates of real jewellery

0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.0 0.0

2011-11 2011-12 2012-13 2013-14 2014-15

value over the 2010–2015 period, was steeper than that of

■ Jewellery ■ Fine Jewellery Source: Euromonitor International

costume jewellery. This shows that the demand for costume


■ Costume Jewellery

approximately 25 % of its revenue from March 2014 to March 2015. Chow Tai Fook retains its strong foothold in the fine

fragmented, making volatile macroeconomic conditions just

jewellery industry, leading with a brand share of 2.6 % in the

one of the many problems that plague the jewellery industry.

world in 2014. However, gold jewellery is widespread in the market and it is no longer a novelty to own such a piece. The raison d’être


for brands exploring new materials is to continue enhancing their value proposition and maintain a steady flow of consumers; both return visits and new buyers, by diversifying their

92,4 %

product offerings. Needless to say, these materials offer vari-

2,6 % 1,9 %

ous properties which substantiate their value. Silver, despite

1,6 %

being a softer metal than gold, is a popular metal used in both

1,5 %

costume and real jewellery due to its lower cost. Different com-

1,0 %

binations of gold and other metals, which result in alloys of different colours, have also surfaced in the market in order to capture the attention of buyers. Attractive combinations like copper and gold rose to popularity in the 1920s, during the mid-Victorian era. The combination of copper and gold produces what we know as Rose Gold. Apart from playing with

■ Others ■ Chow Tai Fook ■ Lao Feng Xiang ■ Tiffany & Co. ■ Cartier ■ Lao Miao Source: Euromonitor International

colour combinations to provide a wider product selection, jewellery makers have also been exploring new materials to be imbued in their latest creations. Not only are they looking to inculcate new materials into their jewellery pieces to attract the audience, jewellery makers are factoring in practicality,

Among the top 10 real jewellery brands in the world, only

like durability, when choosing materials. Fine jewellery mak-

four out of 10 brands have an impactful global footprint while

ers are slowly introducing more platinum products to their

the rest target more local or regional markets. Given the frag-

collections. Platinum is highly durable due to its resistance to

mented and highly competitive global landscape of jewellery,

corrosion and high temperatures, making it a suitable mate-

coupled with economic instability in the world, real jewellery

rial to be used in rings and jewellery products that are worn

players would need to seek opportunities in order to deliver

every day. Taking the game up a notch is Tiffany & Co., which

sales. Real jewellery brands vying for a larger slice of the pie

introduced its own alloy, trademarked as Rubedo, in honour

globally would need to innovate and promulgate different

of its 175th anniversary. Rubedo resembles rose gold, however,

product categories on top of evolving their marketing strate-

what sets it apart is the lower price point of Rubedo which

gies in different locations to cater to the various needs of their

would mean a larger target audience would be able to afford

expanding customer base.

a Tiffany piece. Trademarking the Rubedo metal would translate to a higher perceived value of Tiffany & Co.’s Rubedo prod-


ucts due to its exclusivity to the brand. Additionally, curating one’s own material exudes the innovative proposition of the

Real jewellery brands have been creative with the combi-

brand, which is a break from the norm for luxury houses that

nation of precious metals and gemstones and the way these

bank on the heritage and long-lived tradition of their brands

precious elements are presented, in order to captivate buy-

to push price points.

ers. Gold and diamonds are traditionally popular with fine

In an industry where designs of the product are very much

jewellery makers as essential materials for crafting a piece of

encapsulated around the precious gemstone, jewellery players

exquisite jewellery. According to the World Gold Council, the

are restricted in their level of innovation which in turn restricts

bulk of demand for gold falls under jewellery. Gold jewellery

their variety in product offerings. By manufacturing their own

remains popular in countries like China and India, where gold

alloy, jewellery players are able to customise the composi-

jewellery remains a popular gift for weddings. According to

tion of the metal in order to suit their cost and profit margins,

Chow Tai Fook’s 2015 Annual Report, gold products generated

whilst maintaining their brand image. After all, marketing is



COMPETITIVE LANDSCAPE Additionally, the global jewellery landscape is also very


In order for jewellery brands to penetrate more markets and intensify their global presence, INNOVATION IS VITAL

what propels the idea of every piece of jewellery to popularity. With control over the supply of the alloy, coupled with the right marketing strategy, jewellery players would be able to


extend their product offerings.

THE RISE OF THE MILLENNIALS: INNOVATION AS A SOLUTION FOR FUTURE DEMAND Greater innovation and larger product offerings are fundamental in driving demand from the millennials. Millennials

at 5.4 %, and the US with a CAGR of 2.9 %. Among the top six

refers to the population reaching young adulthood around

countries with the largest millennial populations, Indonesia

the year 2000, who are armed with the spending power today.

leads with a projected 7.0 % CAGR in the millennial population

According to Euromonitor International, millennials are more

for the 2015–2020 period. This is not surprising considering

experimental and expressive in their choices. Therein lies an

the economic reforms that are slowly occurring in Indonesia

opportunity for brands to be daring in exploring new mate-

that look towards improving the infrastructure, which would

rials and reinventing the way millennials perceive and pur-

drive the economy further.

chase jewellery. The millennials are receptive towards new


ideas and altering their perception of new alloys would present an opportunity for a new consumer base for jewellery

In order for jewellery brands to penetrate more markets

made from new materials.

and intensify their global presence, innovation is vital even in the midst of building on their heritage to sell their brand. In our ever-changing economic landscape, innovation is not


restricted to certain industries, like electronics and appliances. Instead, goods in the luxury industry and fast moving consumer goods can also tap into innovation in every aspect. However, in adopting innovation, manufacturers and brand


strategists alike have to be aware of the demographics of the population in order to tap into the right target audience


effectively. In conclusion, even for brands with deep-rooted heritage, there is no escaping that innovation will be the key


to untapped opportunities. 100

DEFINITIONS: According to Euromonitor International, real jewellery


(sometimes known as fine jewellery) includes all jewellery items manufactured with precious metals and/or gemstones.


India China

Precious metals include gold, white gold, platinum, sterling sil-

US Indonesia Brazil Russia

ver, palladium, rhodium, titanium, or alloys of one or more of

■ Largest population of millennials by market (millions) Source: Euromonitor International

the above. Precious gemstones include diamonds, rubies, sapphires, emeralds, and real pearls.

India, China and the US have always been the top three

According to Euromonitor International, costume jewel-

key jewellery markets, measured in market value size in US$

lery (also called fashion jewellery) includes all jewellery items

based on current prices with fixed year-on-year exchange

manufactured with non-precious metals and their alloys, sil-

rates, after India overtook Japan as the world’s third larg-

ver (other than sterling silver), semi-precious gemstones, glass,

est jewellery market in 2006. Coincidentally, these countries

plastic, leather or other synthetic materials.

contain the largest populations of millennials and will no doubt remain the key growth markets in jewellery over the 2015–2020 forecast period. Over the 2010–2015 review period, China saw a value CAGR of 6.9 %, with India trailing behind


Vartodami alkoholÄŻ, rizikuojate savo sveikata, ĹĄeimos ir visuomenÄ—s gerove

tel.: +48 696 22 66 20 email.:


AMBER. Simply AMBER There


is a number of publications about amber which holds a special role in the Lithuanian

culture. From folklore, poetry and culturological research to

Agnė Dautartaitė-Krutulė was the artist of the publication,

the history of amber or exhibition catalogues. The theme of

and the book itself was published in the Publishing House of

amber in Lithuania tends to become popular and once again

Vilnius Academy of Arts. This publication is a rare example of

loses its relevance depending on historical, cultural and social

the unity of design and typography, where images exist paral-

circumstances. However, publications in the English language

lel to the text instead of simply illustrating it, by leaving space

are especially important in order to reveal the importance of

for the imagination of the viewer. For this reason Ministry of

amber for Lithuanians; they are like constant representatives

Culture of the Republic of Lithuania in 2015 the most beautiful

of the Lithuanian culture, where everything is significant –

books contest nominated this book with a diploma. As for the

both the content and the form. Both the text, the visuals, and,

concept, this book is intended for the general public. It popu-

finally (or, perhaps, firstly) – the polygraphic quality and design.

larly presents the history of amber, its properties and use in

Publishers are also important – those who continuously

medicine, its perception as a natural phenomenon, inclusions

promote amber among the general public, in Lithuania and

and the colour spectrum of amber; the book includes descrip-

abroad. Museum workers, artists, researchers. Virginija and

tions on how real amber is distinguished from the fake, how it

Kazimieras Mizgiris are one of the people who cannot imag-

is found and collected, the most famous archaeological find-

ine their lives without amber: they are the founders of amber

ings and Lithuanian artists who work with amber, as well as

museums and galleries, promoters of amber, patrons and

the Amber Road. It is an all-round presentation of amber as

collectors. In 2015, they have initiated and published a book

a natural, historical, cultural and artistic phenomenon in the

in English dedicated to amber, with a laconic title – "Amber".

English language. This publication will undoubtedly find its


BOOK REVIEW readers among those who love amber; on the other hand, it

lines and hollows. Inclusions and the colour palette of amber

also contains a lot of valuable information for those who are

are clearly revealed; the designer presents artist works reveal-

just starting to learn about the world of amber. Information is

ing their originality, as well as the properties of the material

presented in an understandable, popular and attractive way;

itself. A static, composed, elegant, and even aristocratic book

from the lines of poetry to application-oriented texts. The

image is created, demonstrating a clear understanding of the

world of amber is revealed in all its beauty: it is mysterious,

necessity of the product which will fill the niche of high-qual-

colourful and attractive. The design, polygraphy and typog-

ity, aesthetic Lithuanian publications about amber, intended

raphy of the book must also be mentioned separately. From

for foreign readers. The book "Amber" is a rare example of the

the rough book cover that speaks of blue ground deposits

harmony of text and images, demonstrating close coopera-

from which bright yellow letters emerge spelling "AMBER",

tion between the authors/compilers and the designer. High

to the carefully considered compositional solutions of each

polygraphic culture, as well as remarkably well-chosen paper

page, revealing the professional work of the artist. Mildly yel-

and font can also be observed in this book. This conceptual

lowish paper, detailed photos of amber pieces and works of

and aesthetic publication has all the prerequisites to become

art, matched with the muted fragments of the same photos,

both a great example of book art, and one of the most sig-

as if they were shadows accompanying each page – all of this

nificant waymarks helping readers start their journey along

creates compositional unity.

the amber road.

Amber is shown up-close to reveal all the beauty of its


surface, its clarity and the texture of matt amber pieces, its



The operational year of


By Agnieszka KLIKOWICZ

microscopes, UV light, a polariscope and other equipment necessary to properly assess the



2015, the International Amber

submitted materials. Items submitted for

Association opened its new head

testing are examined using non-destructive

office in Gdańsk, at 1 Warzywnicza Street. In

infrared spectrometry that does not require

addition to the IAA office, a gallery and lab-

special sample preparation. This method is

oratory were opened in the facilities owned

used to examine even the smallest amounts

by the city's municipality. Ever since the asso-

of material. The spectrophotometric test pro-

ciation was founded, there have been dis-

duces an infrared (IR) spectrum of the analysed

cussions on the necessity to establish a place

samples. The shape of the spectrum and the

where it would be possible to get reliable infor-

presence of characteristic bands make it possible

mation about the quality of amber. Jewellery market

to identify the material and confirm or deny any treat-

representatives also encouraged to prepare and implement a

ment. Item analysis by zooming in the view, i.e. using UV light,

product certification system. By working in an expert group

makes it possible to determine any treatment or reconstruc-

of geologists, chemists, gemmologists, amber experts and

tion that has been carried out. Later, a kind of match occurs

practitioners, IAA specialists prepared a system for classifying

between the treatment methods used and the determination

Baltic amber gemstones, amber imitations, raw materials and

of features typical of changes in amber. An IAA Amber Expert

semi-finished products. This is an indisputable achievement

will easily determine any traces of heating, dyeing, pressing,

appreciated by foreign laboratories and amber researcher, as

filling or coating. However, since manufacturers are using

well as amber trade. This aim would not be achieved without

increasingly inventive methods to treat amber, buyers and

the cooperation with higher education establishments: the

specialists must continuously deepen their knowledge about

Museum of the Earth of the Polish Academy of Science (Prof.

the applied procedures.

Barbara Kosmowska-Ceranowicz), University of Silesia (Aniela

Currently, samples are tested within 1-2 working days,

Matuszewska Ph.D.), the GUT Gdańsk University of Technology

therefore the interest in analyses is increasing, and this in turn

(Ewa Wagner-Wysiecka Ph.D., D. Sc.) and the University of

determines an increase in the number of products tested.

Gdańsk (Prof. Szadziewski’s team).

At present, the IAA Laboratory has accumulated the largest

The IAA Amber Laboratory established in Gdańsk uses

commercial library of the infrared (IR) spectra of amber and

a spectrophotometer with attenuated total reflectance

its imitations. The increasing cooperation with the Gdańsk

(ATR) for non-invasive examination of products, along with

University of Technology has increased the resources of both the IAA and the GUT. The IAA amber laboratory is also able to identify inclusions. Inclusions are described by palaeontologists – IAA experts from the Faculty of Biology, University of Gdańsk. Orders are usually placed with the IAA Amber Laboratory personally, however, samples for analysis are often delivered via post from around the world. A client who has entrusted the IAA Amber Laboratory to perform an analysis may order two types of documents. A plastic card in a credit card format with all the main information about the item in English (photo, mass, colour, trans-

Epoxy resin

parency) and expert conclusions with comments about any



Certificate of amber identification

treatment or reconstruction. The card contains a QR code for

made from synthetic resins (phenolic resin – novolac or resol).

verifying the authenticity of the document on the IAA web-

Today, the most popular synthetic resins are polyesters

site. It is recommended to use this card as a certificate con-

and epoxy resins. A skilled specialist will immediately notice

firming the authenticity of the product that is intended to be

the difference which is easily confirmed with an IR analysis;

sold. The certificate is added to the product and given to the

however, there were also cases of perfectly faked beads, cab-

buyer after the product is bought. The second document is

ochons and amber gemstones brought by buyers with many

the test certificate; it includes the infrared (IR) spectrum of the

years of experience in order to confirm whether this was amber.

sample and indicates the name of the client. It is issued for all

From a scientific point of view, other resins found together

fakes, non-standard products and, upon request, for amber.

with Baltic amber are also an interesting subject. There were

It can be issued in Polish or English.

cases when black pseudostantienite of unique size (mass 506 g)

The main clients of the laboratory are manufacturers who want to confirm the authenticity of valuable products and sell them at a higher price. The

was found – a resin piece found together with amber, for example, in Ukrainian deposits. On several occa-


sions, the Laboratory received the so-called

number of retailers who want to have their

young amber – gedanite, a transitional type

products tested is also increasing. The clients

between gedanite and succinite, as well as

of the IAA Amber Laboratory also include

fragments of modern synthetic resins found

various institutions – museums, galleries

around amber extraction localities and near

or forensic examination offices. Most of the

the sea. All specimens that come from veri-

tests ordered include jewellery. A large part

fied locations become reference samples in

of the tests include amber stones or nuggets,

comparative databases.

semi-finished products, beads, etc. prepared

We wish to sincerely thank the members

for further production. Various historical

of IAA who firstly provided the financial sup-

objects, sculptures, rosaries, pacifiers for children and the Pope's

port in order to acquire the laboratory equipment, and now

commemorative medals are also submitted for analysis.

provide items for testing and donate fakes and imitations to

Sometimes old items thought to be amber are presented

the ever increasing educational collection. The large IR spectra

for analysis, however, the analysis then reveals that these

library and the growing amber, fossil resin and imitation col-

objects are simply old, mostly pre-WWII products that were

lection provide an increasingly clearer view of the market.

BACTERIA in ancient flea may


be ancestor of the Black Death Press release by OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY

are consistent with modern forms of those bacteria. They are a coccobacillus bacteria; they are seen in both rod and


nearly spherical shapes; and are similar to those of Yersinia pestis. Of the pathogenic bacteria transmitted by fleas today,

About 20 million years ago a single flea became entombed in

only Yersinia has such shapes.

amber with tiny bacteria attached to it, providing what research-

“Aside from physical characteristics of the fossil bacteria

ers believe may be the oldest evidence on Earth of a dreaded

that are similar to plague bacteria, their location in the rectum

and historic killer – an ancient strain of the bubonic plague.

of the flea is known to occur in modern plague bacteria,” Poinar

If indeed the fossil bacteria are related to plague

said. “And in this fossil, the presence of similar bacteria in a

bacteria,Yersinia pestis, the discovery would show that this

dried droplet on the proboscis of the flea is consistent with the

scourge, which killed more than half the population of Europe

method of transmission of plague bacteria by modern fleas.”

in the 14 century, actually had been around for millions of

These findings are in conflict with modern genomic stud-

years before that, traveled around much of the world, and

ies indicating that the flea-plague-vertebrate cycle evolved

predates the human race.

only in the past 20,000 years, rather than 20 million. However,


Findings on this extraordinary amber fossil have been

today there are several strains of Yersinia pestis, and there is

published in the Journal of Medical Entomology by George

evidence that past outbreaks of this disease were caused by

Poinar, Jr., an entomology researcher in the College of Science

still different strains, some of which are extinct today.

at Oregon State University, and a leading expert on plant and

While human strains of Yersinia could well have

animal life forms found preserved in this semi-precious stone.

evolved some 10,000 to 20,000 years ago, Poinar said,

It can’t be determined with certainty that these bacte-

ancient Yersinia strains that evolved as rodent parasites could

ria, which were attached to the flea’s proboscis in a dried

have appeared long before humans existed. These ancient

droplet and compacted in its rectum, are related to Yersinia

strains would certainly be extinct by now, he said.

pestis, scientists say. But their size, shape and characteristics

The complex mode of transmission of plague is also reflected in the flea seen in this fossil. When a flea feeds on a plague-infected animal, the Yersinia

FLEA IN AMBER. This flea preserved about 20 million years ago in amber may carry evidence of an ancestral strain of the bubonic plague. (Photo by George Poinar, Jr., courtesy of Oregon State University)

pestis bacteria taken up with the blood often form a viscous mass in the flea’s proventriculus, located between the stomach and esophagus. When this happens, the fleas can’t obtain enough blood, and as they attempt to feed again, bacteria are often forced back out through the proboscis and into the wound. This blockage is in part what makes them effective vectors of the plague, and the dried droplets on the proboscis of the fossil flea could represent a sample of the sticky bacterial mass that was regurgitated. “If this is an ancient strain of Yersinia, it would be extraordinary,” Poinar said. “It would show that plague is actually an ancient disease that no doubt was infecting and possibly causing some extinction of animals long before any humans existed. Plague may have played a larger role in the past than

Bacteria on proboscis – The arrow points at bacteria on the pro­ boscis of this flea preserved in amber, which researchers believe may be an ancestral strain of the bacteria that causes bubonic pla­ gue. (Photo by George Poinar, Jr., courtesy of Oregon State University)

we imagined.” The fossil flea originated from amber mines in what is now the Dominican Republic, between Puerto Plata and Santiago.


eruptions, led to the extinction of the dinosaurs. Some modern

few fleas of any type have been found preserved in amber,

diseases such as leishmaniasis and malaria clearly date to

Poinar said, and none have been reported with associated

those times.

microorganisms, as in this case. This specimen had some other

Bubonic plague in modern times can infect and kill a wide

unique morphological features that indicate it’s a species that

range of animals, in addition to humans. It is still endemic in

long ago went extinct.

many countries, including the United States where it’s been

But it was the associated bacteria that fascinated the researchers. “Since the dried droplet with bacteria is still attached to

found in prairie dogs and some other animals. Even though today it is treatable with antibiotics, in the U.S. four people have died from plague so far this year.

the tip of the proboscis, the flea may have become entrapped

During the Middle Ages, however, three phases of the dis-

in resin shortly after it had fed on an infected animal,” Poinar

ease – bubonic, septicemic and pneumonic plague - earned

said. “This might have been one of the rodents that occurred

a feared reputation. Periodic waves of what was called the

in the Dominican amber forest. Rodent hair has been recov-

Black Death, for the gruesome condition in which it left its

ered from that amber source.”

victims, swept through Europe and Asia, altogether killing an

Flea-like creatures found in conventional stone fossils date back to the time of the dinosaurs, Poinar said, and the role of insects in general, and as carriers of disease, may have played

estimated 75 to 200 million people. Scholars say that religious, social and economic changes caused by the plague altered the course of world history.

a role in the demise of the ancient reptiles. In 2008, Poinar and his wife, Roberta Poinar, wrote a book


“What Bugged the Dinosaurs? Insects, Disease and Death in

As one of the largest academic units at OSU, the College

the Cretaceous.” It explored the evolutionary rise of insects

of Science has seven departments and 12 pre-professional

around the same time that dinosaurs went extinct. The the-

programs. It provides the basic science courses essential to

sis developed in the book added insect-borne diseases as a

the education of every OSU student, builds future leaders in

likely component, that, along with other biotic and abiotic

science, and its faculty are international leaders in scientific

factors such as climate change, asteroid impacts and volcanic



Millions of years ago the area was a tropical moist forest. Very



lost-wax casting (investment casting ) – a technological process which is one of the oldest known metal-forming/casting technique. It’s a method, where a molten metal is poured into a mold that has been created by means

of a wax model. Once the mold is made, the wax model is melted and drained away. Today – the machines, the materials and the technique combine together to provide the best casting results. Especially in jewellery, where the tiny details have to be extremely accurate, the significant casting rules should be obeyed:

1. The main sprue – a crucial element of the whole invest-

In some cases the correct placement of the sprue may

ment casting process – the shape of the sprue guarantees fast

require trying different versions of placing it on the casted

and laminar metal flow which is essential for a good form-fill-


ing. Every turbulences will reduce the metal speed, increasing the pouring time of the liquid metal, resulting in losing metal temperature.

The main sprue construction. (The left side – GOOD, the right – BAD) Different ways of feed sprue creations.

2. The feed sprue – The right shape of the feed sprues (injection channels) avoids the stopping of liquid metal on its way to the casted element. The feed sprue’s job is similar to

3. Wax tree building – The angle between the main sprue

the main sprue. Incorrect way of building the casting channels

and the feed sprue in casting tree should stands at 20-30o. The

may cause turbulences and metal twisting causing additional

angle has a direct impact on the free movement of wax and

problems in the casting process. The correct width, number

finally – on the liquid metal movement.

of sprues and the place, where they are fixed on the piece are important for the whole process. Proper sprue reduces the gas porosity and shrinkage of the metal having direct impact on the final quality of the jewellery. The feed sprue construction. (The left side – GOOD, the right – BAD)

Right angle diagram.



4. The Investment powder – keeping up with the instructions provided by the manufacturer is necessary. Mostly, it is 38 or 40 parts of water and 100 parts of investment powder. the strength. Adding to much water may lower the solidity of

yy It is recommended to use distilled water for the process.

gypsum and may lead to cracks in the gypsum form. In case

yy Always add powder to water (not vice-versa) .

of high ambient moisture, it can be used a little bit less water

yy The water temperature has a huge impact for the time of

because the investment powder already has some water inside.


It is so important to own a proper vacuum mixer. That will

yy The working temperature should be mentioned in the

help to mix properly water and investment powder to avoid

manufacturers instruction.

bubbles which are one of the main reasons of form quality

yy The casting flask needs to be left away on a stable surface

decrease .

for 2 hours (don’t remove the rubber base). yy The investment powder (gypsum) is highly hydroscopic so it absorbs the moisture from the environment. yy The investment powder should be stored in a room temperature, avoiding temperature changes. Water and investment powder’s temperature should remain on the same level. yy The ambient humidity should never be above 36 % during the whole process yy Batches storage must be kept on euro palettes to provide airflow below. yy Shelf life of the powder should never be longer than 18 months. yy Warm up the furnace to 150°C before putting the flask into.

Casted wax tree.

yy Always go strictly with the process instruction. yy Check the ventilation around the casting machine

5. Casting alloys –only pure alloys should be used. During the preparations and before casting, strict rules should be kept

The article has been created in cooperation with P.A.T. Poland

(to prevent any gases and unwanted metals contamination).

Company. All necessary casting steps has been provided by casting specialist - Mr. Adam Kucharski. “Casting process is a complicated procedure and it’s not

yy Never use cooper from unknown supply, use only pure cooper (don’t use cooper from wires).

easy to get desired results when customers’ lack of knowledge

yy Always use more than 50 % of pure metal.

and experience is present, especially. So when buyer decides to

yy Remember to clean scrap metal ( acid, ultrasonic cleaner,

choose the production casting machine, has to consider (beyond efficiency/price ratio obviously) after-sale know-how support,

water ).

too” – he says.

yy It is recommended to use vacuum devices to degas the alloy. yy In case of any undesired metal contamination it is essential to make a refining process first. yy Don’t overheat the metal.



More water will increase the gas permeability but will reduce



an Interview with Professor Barbara KOSMOWSKA-CERANOWICZ By Anna SADO The long awaited atlas IR Imaginings of World Resins. Characteristics of Their Holotypes is a unique publication on an international scale. The materials for the publication – the infrared imaginings of fossil and sub-fossil resins, some amber imitations as well as the dictionary of mineralogical names of fossil, sub-fossil resins and resin-like substances – had been gathered for about 30 years. For the author, it is “merely one step forward”…


holding the long await-

and photograph specimens. Without their

ed ATLAS – the record

help and engagement it wouldn’t have

of 30 years of your work.

been possible to gather such substan-

You can say that. I had been gathering

tial material for research. I would like to

those curves since 1985. Today I can’t even

thank everyone.

remember what my initial ideas on their

Research material – even from

use were. The researchers in the 1950s and

a museum – isn’t always consistent

60s had different reasons for using absorp-

with its label. How did you deal with

tion spectroscopy. Curt W. Beck used it to

this problem?

identify products found in museums and

There is always such a risk. When I

at excavations, for the needs of archaeolo-

examine the material for the first time, I

gists; Światosław S. Sawkiewicz introduced

assumed that it is exactly what the label

the IRS method to basic amber examina-

says. Then, when more samples of the

tion in order to find out what the scope of

same material were available, I was able

succinte was on the territory of the then

to verify whether it is indeed the case.

USSR, and then he directed them to the needs of the indus-

The material I have gathered is based mainly on the samples

try. My aim was first to check what kind of resins, apart from

of fossil and sub-fossil resins, well-documented by trust-wor-

succinite are deposited nearby the deposits of lignite in the

thy people who bestowed the material – thanks to that it can

Bitterfeld region. Back then it was an incredibly interesting

be treated as exemplary for comparative studies while iden-

region for research into various resins’ occurrence. Currently

tifying further findings.

Indonesia is this kind of not fully researched natural laboratory.

A reliable description of a specimen is a prerequisite for a

You have researched samples of Indonesian res-

good publication. The other requirements are a good spec-

ins, as well as many others, from different parts of the

trometer and research method – I prefer the transmission


method. The description has to include the place where the

When I got motivated to continue doing research, I exam-

holotype is available, although there aren’t many of those left nowadays.

ined virtually everything that I encountered. I couldn’t miss any chance to gain samples for research, be it from collectors

The dictionary of holotypes by Norbert Vávra, which

or museum institutions. I was lucky to have come across peo-

is a supplement to the ATLAS is a good example of an

ple who understand the value of research materials for sci-

ideal description.

ence: I have received many gifts from collectors and amber

The dictionary of holotypes “Mineralogical Names of

jewellers, museum workers let me take material for research

Fossil, Sub-fossil Resins and Resin-like Substances” includes


PERSONALITY In October 2015 at the opening ceremony of the 16th edition of the International Trade Fair for Jewellery, Watches Gold Silver Time in Warsaw, Professor Barbara KOSMOWSKA-CERNOWICZ was awarded granted a Decoration of Honour “Meritorious for Polish Culture” granted by the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage in recognition of her 55 year-long career. Photo by: Norbert PIWOWARCZYK

encyclopaedic data about resins that have gained mineral-

I chose about 334 images from over 1100 of resins found

ogical names.

in many places of the world and made in different spectrom-

It is exceptionally valuable, not only because of its con-

eters. I have deliberately chosen such a spectrum in order to

tent, but also due to the fact that we had been waiting for its

make it make it possible for everyone to notice that sometimes

publication for about 30 years.

the similarity is evident, and sometimes the range of the wave

Only about a third of the gathered images were

number may be higher. There wasn’t one key for selection for

published in the ATLAS. What key did you use to select

all of them. It was really important to me that I show the images


of all resins that I have examined, from as many different places

Infrared spectra of succinite


as possible. In the case of succynite I have shown the images from each place of its occurrence: Sambian, Bitterfeld, and Ukrainian, as well as younger deposits in the south of Poland. In this way, the reader has an opportunity not only to see the


image, but also to get familiar with the dispersion of the resins in nature. Generally, the distinction includes: fossil resin that have been given their own mineralogical names’ fossil resins that are referred to according to the geographical names; subfossil resins, “young amber”, contemporary resins; fossil and sub-fossil modified resins; amber imitations from the collection of the Amber Department of the Earth Museum by the

I have a rule: THE WORK MUST BE CORRECT AND UP-TO-DATE as much as possible for the author (“maximally scientific”), and THE TEXT

Academy of Sciences in Warsaw. Although the images are likely not to be comprehensible for the majority of readers, the texts will surely be



not only for scientific experts from different fields, but also for a lay person too

I have a rule: the work must be correct and up-to-date as much as possible for the author (“maximally scientific”), and the text must be maximally comprehensible not only for scientific experts from different fields, but also for a lay person too. Especially taking into account the fact that the ATLAS is only one step forward, there is a need for further research and publications. Although I have not been able to identify some of the images, I decided to publish them – in a hope that somebody else might. ATLAS is not aimed only at scientists. What benefits can it bring to amber lovers? Obviously, there is an indirect benefit for them – the world is progressing towards gaining money by all means. The people who want to buy jewellery want to be sure that they won’t be cheated – to put it simply, they require a certificate. First of all, they can require a photograph of the work offered, currently the certificate without IR imaging has less and less value on the market. I hope that at least the importance of IR imaging in Poland will become recognisable not only for the experts, but also for the amber lovers. It will be a pleasure for me to know that the readers of the ATLAS have made another step in the field of amber expertise. Barbara Kosmowska-Ceranowicz, PhD, Professor, with habilitation is a geologist who works at the Earth Museum by the Polish Academy of Sciences in Warsaw. She has been the initiator of many exhibitions, held in Poland and abroad, devoted to amber and its role in nature, culture and art. She is also an author of over 200 scientific and popular-scientific works (she was awarded the Gold Rose prize in 2012 for “Amber in Poland and in The World” for the best popular-scientific book in the publishing season 2011/2012). In 2015 she was granted a Decoration of Honour “Meritorious for Polish Culture” granted by the Ministry of Education.



IR Imaging of World Fossils.

shows to the amber lovers, as well as reminding the current,

Characteristics of Their Holotypes”

especially the younger, analysts how the analysing technol-

is a unique publication on the international scale. It consists of

ogy changes. And it happens regardless of the technologi-

two bilingual (Polish and English) volumes. The first one, “Atlas

cal progress, as at the end of each analysis there is a person,

of the Infrared Imaging of Fossil, Sub-fossil Resins and Some

whose knowledge and skills allow for the reliable estimate

Amber Imitations” is a unique collation, comprising a great deal

of the result.

of spectral data concerning world fossils – the result of many

The universal value of the ATLAS is certainly noteworthy.

years of Professor Kosmowska-Ceranowicz’s work (affiliated

It is a huge benefit for this part of society that is academically

with the Polish Academy of Sciences, The Earth Museum in

connected to, or is planning to be connected to, amber. The

Warsaw). The second volume consists of “Mineralogical Names

ATLAS is also a door to an extraordinary world, which Professor

of Fossil and Sub-fossil Resins and Fossil-related Substances”

Kosmowska-Ceranowicz opens to all amber lovers, by sharing

by Professor Vávra (Austria). It is a summary that gives hope

not only her knowledge, but also her passion which is visible

that it will finally be possible to instil the habit of naming res-

in each word of the extensive commentary. It is impossible

ins, which would facilitate understanding when people speak

not make use of it.

the same language. Both parts of the publication contain a

Here, at the end I would like to cite the words of one of the first readers of the ATLAS, Dariusz Wysiecki (M.Sc.), who

rich and up-to-date bibliography. Let us focus on the first part, though. The ATLAS contains

had a chance to register some of the imaginings for Professor

about 344 images in mid-infrared spectrum, which together

Kosmowska-Ceranowicz: “Personally, as someone who has

with the pictures of the specimens show marvellously the

been an amber lover since my childhood, but also an analyst

breadth and variety of fossils in the world, as well as charac-

who works with the latest analytical equipment on a daily basis,

terising selected Baltic amber imitations. However, that does

I have been so greatly impressed with this monograph that

not mean that it is only a collection of images. They are well-

I felt as if I had entered an art gallery which took my breath

documented data, which means that they are reliable, and for

away. It cannot be compared to anything else, as you cannot

an analyst – invaluable. However, the ATLAS certainly cannot

compare masterpieces”.

be paralleled with electronic user databases of images that

Professor Kosmowska-Ceranowicz, I would to express my

have already been created and where the spectral data are

most sincere congratulations on the publication of the long

compared by using appropriate mathematical algorithms.

awaited ATLAS and thank you – I am sure that not only on my

Here, in the ATLAS, each image has a number and includes a

behalf – for such a valuable position for all of us.

description of the resin, its origin and age, which is a kind of unique way of telling its story, taking into account the history of the material obtained for research. The ATLAS also clearly



Ewa WAGNER-WYSIECKA, Ph.D., D.Sc., chemist - assistant professor at Faculty of Chemistry of the Gdańsk University of Technology. Amber expert of International Amber Association with more than 10 years of experience in spectroscopic studies of fossil, subfossil resins and their imitations.

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