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     The cooler weather and changing colors of fall remind us that the holiday season is just around the corner. With December being such a busy month full of family, friend and work events, why not start your shopping early this year? Spend your holidays enjoying time with your loved ones, instead of worrying about those last minute gifts! We carry jewelry, watches, cuff links and more for all the special people on your list.

     What woman doesn’t love to unwrap a gift and see a jewelry box waiting to be opened? We have engagement rings, wedding bands, bracelets, earrings, pendants and necklaces in a broad spectrum of prices to fit your budget. We create custom jewelry pieces and carry a variety of designers, always updating our inventory to carry the most current and classic jewelry trends.

     This season’s jewelry trends include something for everyone. Bright and feminine, gold has made a comeback in recent years and we carry yellow, white and rose gold jewelry. Hoop earrings are popular with many ladies and we have them with diamond accents or solid gold in a variety of sizes as well. Does she love color? We have both bold and delicate gemstone jewelry that will liven up her day. And if you’re looking for something different, black diamonds have an understated sparkle that accentuate any outfit. Come in and let us help you pick out the perfect gift!

     We also have gifts for the men in your life! We carry a beautiful selection of watches from rugged to refined. We hand pick our inventory ourselves from international watch shows to ensure that our watches are quality, stylish and not ones to be seen on every wrist. We carry German search and rescue watches, elegant dress watches and everything in between. Interested in something different? Our Deakin and Francis cuff links are imported from England where their workshops have been hand making jewelry since 1786. Our cuff links come in different precious metals, incorporating vitreous enamel and even movable parts! From baseballs to surfers, skiers to classic cars, designs to gemstones, we have highly crafted cuff links for the man or woman on your gift list.

     The holidays are a special time of year to spend with those closest to us. Come visit us early in the season for your holiday gifts and free up your season to do just that!

 

The Ethiopian Welo Opal

Rough Welo Opal mined in Ethiopia

Opals have always been revered as a beautiful and significant gemstone, carrying qualities that are unique compared to other gemstones. Derived from the Latin word “opalus,” it literally translates as “precious stone.”

18k yellow gold earrings with Welo Opals

In the past, most opals were mined in places like Australia, Mexico, Ireland and even the United States, but have been recently discovered in Africa. The recent discovery (within the past five years) occurred in the Welo Amhara Plateau (southern region of Welo) in northern Ethiopia. These newly mined hydrophane opals carry bright orange, neon green, fiery rays of red and radiant blue tones that shine through the translucent silica like a rainbow.

 

Meaning

The term “hydrophane” derives from Greek; translated, means water (hydro), and having like qualities (phane). All opals contain water, and the hydrophane opals contain a level ranging from three to ten percent (opals have been known to contain a water volume as high as twenty percent). Water as a property makes them very distinctive with color bursts truly unique to the hydrophane opal.

 

Care

Beaded Opal necklace and Bezel set opal ring, 18k yellow gold & diamonds

The beauty of the hydrophane opal offers versatility in the setting. It is generally safer to set opals with a bezel, as a bezel (fully surrounded by metal) offers a good base of protection for the gemstone. Since the hydrophane opal does contain water, special care should be taken when cleaning an opal. The best recommendation for cleaning an opal is to take it to a professional. If this is not an option, then simply use water and a very soft brush. Rinse the opal and scrub it gently while submersed for only a few seconds.

Partita offers a variety of different pieces with hydrophane opals, which include opal studs, earrings, a gold bezel-set ring and pendant. Come in and experience the beautiful world of the hydrophane opal.

Buying a Diamond

Buying a diamond may be one of the trickiest of tasks a man (or woman) may face when it comes to the ritual of engagement; perhaps even more so than popping the question! It is important for the consumer to know and understand the many aspects of buying a diamond before browsing the internet or venturing off to the nearest jewelry store.

Prior to 1931, there was no accurate grading system to effectively reflect a fair price for a diamond, or any colored stone. For centuries, diamonds and gemstones were sourced and cut, but with no real way to measure the quality except for the weight. The Nineteenth Century introduced a cut that was similar to the old “mine cut” known as the European cut. Like the old “mine cut,” the “European cut” also produced 58 facets, allowing light to refract through it very well. The difference was that the European cut was more round than its predecessor. By the early 1900’s, lighting had changed from gas lamps and candlelight to a brighter light powered by electricity, far less forgiving of flaws and inclusions. It would take one more innovation by Marcel Tolkowsky known as the “Tolkowsky brilliant cut,” adding a rounder culet.  Since World War II, the “modern round, brilliant cut” has been the ideal cut for a diamond, as it is today.

Diamond Grading System

Established in 1931, G.I.A. is an abbreviation for Gemological Institute of America. Recognizing the lack of standards with colored stones and diamonds, the primary goal was to implement such a system to regulate and properly identify stones. This would become a tool that would benefit both the jeweler and the consumer. G.I.A. has established four characteristics to identify and categorize each round diamond on the market: Cut, clarity, color, carat weight.  With a grading system to identify each aspect, G.I.A. changed the way the public viewed diamonds.

Internet

                  Not only has the internet changed the way diamonds are viewed, but also how they are being purchased. The internet has created a new niche for diamonds purchased and sold online. The consumer has a disadvantage to the seller when purchasing a diamond through the internet. The main advantage is that the consumer cannot physically see the diamond before it is purchased. With a complex grading system, one single difference in the diamond (which may not be seen online) can change the aesthetics (and value) of the diamond in a drastic manner. Photos can be altered, which means that the product may not be exactly what is seen. With so many components, diamonds can take a lifetime to fully comprehend. Factors include (but are not limited to) carat weight, color, cut, table ratio to culet, and treatment. Two diamonds may have the exact same qualities, but when compared in person, side by side, they may look different.

                  The best way to shop for a diamond is to see it first. Aesthetics are highly important when it comes to finding the right diamond, and this cannot be established by numbers and online photos. Physically seeing the diamond can change everything. For a diamond quote, please contact us. Our trained staff can answer any questions you may have to create an engagement experience as unique as the bride-to-be.

Zeppelin and Junkers: Then Famous, now Legendary

                                                                                        Zeppelin Blue Flatline

Ferdinand Graf von Zeppelin constructed the first dirigible aero fixed airship (1900), while Hugo Junkers was an aviation pioneer that brought commercial aviation to a new level in the 1920’s and 30’s.  With innovation forged behind these names, watches that carry the same have a strong reputation to uphold. Zeppelin and Junkers watches wear a rich history born on the banks of the river Isar in a quaint, scenic town known as Ismaning (near Munich). In 1987, founder Wilhelm Birk vowed to "create watches that would stand out thanks to their unique design, excellent price/performance ratio and high product quality…” That vision has become a reality, as the 2015 watches exemplify these features at a very affordable price.

A new feature has been added to the classic Flatline: A *power reserve indicator. When traveling, the convenience of a 24-hour sub dial allows for a quick time reference in a different time zone. With a 40mm face, this watch is a joy to read with an eye on fashion with a steel case and a choice of blue, black or beige dial. The observation portal allows the wearer to see the automatic movement in action. ($549) 5ATM

                                                                     Junkers G 38 Chronograph

The Junkers G38 offers a 42mm face for a bold look and a rose gold plated case to take the knocks, and a chronograph feature for precision timing. The G38 displays two panels on the face: A secondhand feature, as well as a minute indicator for the chronograph. A convenient calendar window is located just above the “6” for the date. The G38 quartz watch offers everything a guy could want in a watch. ($380) Available in stainless steel.

                                          Zeppelin Princess of the Sky

This Zeppelin Princess of the Sky is a timeless beauty which offers a 34mm transparent face to view the automatic movement of the watch. The bezel is available in stainless steel or rose. With a strap that snaps away, the Princess of the sky can easily convert from a wristwatch to a pendant watch. ($380)

 

Zeppelin and Junkers combined are the largest watch producers in Germany: Value, quality, and style are the main reasons for their success. The 2015 watches from Zeppelin and Junkers offer a fresh perspective on keeping time at a price that is affordable for everyone. Call us for information regarding functions and prices.

 

Passion for Time by Glycine

Founded in 1914 by a gentleman named Eugene Meylan, Glycine’s humble beginnings were etched from a factory in Bienne, Switzerland. An engineer, Meylan would accept nothing less than perfection. He had a vision that included the technological advances of the time, as well as the market and economy of the era. Originally known for his petite movements for ladies’ watches, Glycine found a niche with the wealthy of society, cladding his platinum-cased watches with precious diamonds and gems. Around 1931, Meylan created his own self-winding watch; which, at the time, was a breakthrough years ahead of its time. In 1934, Glycine introduced a line of chronometers, passing stringent tests of Swiss standards.

In 1953 Glycine began production on their now legendary watch the Airman. This watch was designed in cooperation with military and private pilots of the era. Pioneering the way with world time, the Airman set a standard in the field of watch making.

Today, the Airman is in a class of its own: The face of the Airman offers hours, minutes, and seconds, a 24-hour hand, and date display. The function of the Airman offers a 46-hour power reserve, waterproof up to 20m, sapphire glass and a screw-down crown.

With a century of ingenuity behind them, Glycine has made its mark in the watch making industry. The most notorious watch made by Glycine is the Airman. In 2014, Glycine remade the original Airman No. 1 using the plans for the original, just as it was manufactured in 1953. Under the helm of president and owner Stephen Lack, Glycine continues to carry the torch that was lit so long ago by founder Eugene Maylan. Swiss owned and operated, Glycine will continue to deliver fine instruments of time keeping “Just a bit outside of mainstream.” (Stephen Lack, owner Glycine)

Not Just one, but three Rings for the Holiday Season!

 

The trend is swinging towards stackable rings and multiple rings on the same hand. This is a great way to mix up different styles of rings: Rose, yellow and white gold to create an eclectic match. Another way to “mix it up” is to wear different colored stones to create a multicolored party on a hand.

Stackable rings come in a variety of different widths, and can be comprised of many different metals. Mix a platinum band with a yellow gold band…mix sapphires with diamonds, or throw in some rubies for holiday flair. The possibilities with stackable rings are endless.

Budget can be a factor when it comes to accessorizing for the holidays, but there are a few ways to avoid spending more on the accessories than the budget permits. The metal of a ring is an important component, appearance wise, but what is most important is an emotional connection, a passion for the piece. White gold is a fantastic way to showcase a stone, but rose can bring special warmth to brilliant colors. Keep in mind certain stones with deep colors: Amethyst, garnet and onyx are some examples of gems that can enrich the fun this year at any occasion. Diamonds, emeralds and sapphires deliver a different kind of brilliance: Sparkle, green hues, and blues can be found from these precious gems.

When it comes to jewelry gifts for the holidays, think outside the box: Three gifts are always better than one. Transform your hand into eye candy for your friends and loved ones to admire.


Mühle Glasshütte Driven to Perfection

Although Hans Jurgen Mühle established his company “Mühle-Glashütte GmbH nautische instrumente und feinmechanik” in 1994, the family history in watch works dates back to well over a century. Established in 1869 as manufacturer of precision instruments, Robert Mühle designed specifically for the local watch market, as well as apprentice schools in existence at the time.

Mühle Glasshütte is known for more than fine watches. With a rich history in precision instruments, it is only natural that they have made a name for themselves by producing fine, nautical equipment: Barometers, thermometers and hygrometers are a few of the nautical instruments that are manufactured by Mühle Glasshütte. With commercial ships, precision is a necessity, which is why Mühle Glasshütte is trusted by many who operate on the open sea.

Excellence in nautical instruments has paved the way for a new standard in nautical watches: The S.A.R. Rescue-Timer. Built for service, the Search and Rescue watch has been in service by the German Maritime Search and Rescue Service and its 56 cruisers for a long term.
 

The movement of the SAR Rescue Timer is the SW 200-1, automatic made by Mühle. The casing is stainless steel with a 4mm thick sapphire crystal and a screw-in crown for water resistance to 100 bars. The face is simple and easy to read with luminous hands and indices for nocturnal reading capability. When searching for a watch, do not settle for anything other than the one that is right for function, style and practicality. Mühle Glasshütte offers many different styles of watches; find the one that works for you.

 

Autumn Trends:

Heating up with Rose Gold and Black Diamonds

Vacations have come to an end and school is underway once again, bringing some of the most amazing weather to San Francisco. Indian summer delivers the warmth of summer juxtaposed with the crisp edge of fall. As with the seasons, the climate of jewelry is changing towards a more subtle tone: Rose gold and black diamonds. Instead of a flashy yellow or a neutral white, rose gold offers a muted tone, rekindling a flavor of romance for an event as casual as a hayride or as formal as an evening on the town. Black diamonds offer a sharp contrast to the sparkle of a white diamond. As a muted tone, black diamonds can be worn with any clothing options, formal or casual, and they effectively enhance other pieces when worn with them.

The soft turn to rose gold was present at the Biennale des Antiquaires (Biennial Antique) show mid-October in Paris. Jean-Bernard Forot, director of Piaget’s jewelry describes “Femininity and softness,” as being the reason for the trend this year towards rose gold. “Rose gold disappears against the skin,” Claire Choisne, a new designer at Boucheron, a famed jewelry house in Paris, remarked about the trend. She continued to add, “…[It] is more discreet than yellow or white gold, brings warmth to the creation…”*

There is a common intrigue, a love affair if you will, between women and diamonds. Diamonds are graded on Moh’s Scale of hardness as a ten (on a scale of one through ten), diamonds sparkle like no other gemstone, and they are truly brilliant. The black diamond has the same hardness as a clear one, yet it does not have the same sparkle. The muted value of the black diamond is incredible, creating a luscious backdrop for a rose gold necklace and pendant.

Style and fashion are dynamic, ever-changing to fit the needs of the trends to the corresponding period and demand. While rose gold may be trending, it has been around for over 150 years (historically known as Russian gold) and is not going away. Black diamonds can be worn by themselves for a subtle statement, or they can be worn with another piece to enhance the colors of that piece. Rose gold and black diamonds may be trending, but it is a trend that is here to stay.

*Menkes, Suzy: Radiant Like the Dawn: Rose Gold Is in Vogue Again, New York Times, Ny, NY, September, 2012; web, October, 2014.

Time for a Change-

Junghans finely crafted Wristwatches

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Wristwatches are symbolic of humankind’s evolution and progression to capture and covet time. Junghans watches are a perfect example of just how far we have come. Born in 1861, in a small town known as Schramberg in the Black Forest, Erhard Junghans and his brother-in-law, Jakob Zeller-Tobler, began manufacturing specific parts for watch production. Known for precision and excellence, their reputation pushed Jungahans into design and construction of their own line of watches by 1866. By 1903, Junghans had become the world’s largest watch factory, producing watches on a global market level, known mainly for quality and affordability.

“Keine technik ohne ästhetik.”

“No technology without aesthetic appeal.” One may argue that all wristwatches seem to be the same, but that argument is quickly dismissed at the sight of a Junghans watch. From the 1930’s to the 1960’s, product designer Anton Ziegler combined function and form in perfect harmony. His attention to detail can be seen today in the Meister series (see photo). In 1961, Max Bill continued the legendary procession of appeal by creating his own style of watches for Junghans. Max’s tradition of beauty and brilliance continue in the Max Bill series (see photo).

“…Und keine ästhetik ohne technik.”

“And no aesthetic appeal without technology.” Although each and every Junghans watch offers distinctiveness in terms of looks, there is much more inside to appreciate. Each timepiece is custom manufactured, which means that there is no assembly line. Instead, the process begins with a series of control tests to all of the components. Each timepiece is assigned a team of experts and watchmaker from the beginning of the process, right to the end.

                                                                                             Junghans Max Bill Chronoscope

For over 150 years, Junghans has been known for fine craftsmanship, innovation and impeccable accuracy, and will continue to improve and pave the way for the future of watch making. With emphasis on technology and appearance, Junghans has truly earned a reputation of being a pacesetter in the field.

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Wedding Bells are Ringing!

Happy New Year!  

Already many of you who are planning Spring or Summer weddings have had the revelation:  “There is no longer a year to get ready for the Big Day!”  Lists have to be seriously attended to.  Plans have to be finalized.  And of course there are the wedding bands.  Some of you may already know what it is you want.  But those of you, who don’t, get out there and start looking. 

There is a lot to look at for both men and women.  Looking at rings will also help you form a realistic budget. We recommend that you choose and order your rings early.  You will have your ring for most or all of your married life.  You owe it to yourself to find something that is comfortable and beautiful. And don’t forget Valentine’s Day or the upcoming Spring anniversary.  Plan ahead and you will have an easier time finding the perfect gift.  Designing and making a piece of fine jewelry will typically take 6 to 8 weeks, sometimes even longer.   Jewelry is often an unexpected gift.  That makes it more special.

All of us at Partita hope you have a wonderful new year!

Happy Holidays from Partita!

Happy Holidays!

It's that time of year again! Lots to do, not enough time to do it. Gifts to give...but what? If you need some suggestions for what to get him or her, stop by, email, or give us a call. Jewelry, Watches, a gift certificate, even a remake of an older piece of jewelry can be a great surprise gift for the holidays.

14k Rose Gold and Diamonds; By Marika

14k Rose Gold and Diamonds; By Marika

 

This year Rose Gold is in great demand. The color looks fabulous with most skin tones. Yellow Gold in bold and wearable jewelry is also highlighted this season. Classic gifts like Diamonds, Sapphire, Ruby earrings and pendants are always a good choice. Stacking bands or bracelets can add a lot of color to your grey winter day.  

Check out some of Marika's bold, but wearable fashion rings and bracelets...

14k Yellow Gold and Diamonds; By Marika

14k Yellow Gold and Diamonds; By Marika

And Every man needs a watch. Come in and take a look at some of our Junghans classic watches. The Meister Agenda with a metal watchband is a classic that will feel and look comfortable in almost any setting. Muhle Glashutte's SAR's Watch is great for the man who wants a mechanical time piece that can handle rugged wear and tear. 

Happy Holidays from Partita Custom Design Jewelry! 

Junghan's Meister Agenda

Junghan's Meister Agenda