2015 Essendon Gem And Lapidary Club Exhibition

The Essendon Gem and Lapidary Club Annual Exhibition was held on the 18th and 19th April 2015. This year, it was remarkable to see the great improvements to the Club made by President Bill Gordon. I attended the Exhibition on the Sunday afternoon, which is not normally a time for busy crowds, but the attendance rate was quite impressive this year.

An influx of new members of all ages have joined the Club recently and workshops are now more prolific. The Club is a vibrant place these days, buzzing with activity and people are enjoying sharing their knowledge and working together to increase the local influence of the Club. All of this heralds a fantastic year ahead - well done to all members on making the Essendon Club the most friendly and passionate lapidary club in the northern suburbs of Melbourne!

There was a good turnout on both days.
There was a good turnout on both days. | Source
A closer look at Rachel's jewellery.
A closer look at Rachel's jewellery. | Source

Eyecatching Stalls

One of our new stallholders this year was Mel from Mel's Treasures. This was a truly inspired stall with a huge array of necklaces, pendants and gemstone jewellery to choose from. We particularly liked the old fashioned sign and theme!

Rachel McCarthy's Handmade Jewellery And Design was also a new stall. She displayed an arty collection of sterling silver jewellery with a focus on both organic and geometric shapes, perfect for people wanting the latest contemporary art in silver.

Rachel McCarthy displays her precious metal and stones jewellery.
Rachel McCarthy displays her precious metal and stones jewellery. | Source
Mel discusses her treasures with a customer.
Mel discusses her treasures with a customer. | Source
A closer look at Mel's treasures.
A closer look at Mel's treasures. | Source
Fish and shells in the Fossils showcase.
Fish and shells in the Fossils showcase. | Source

Showcases

This year offered a mix of old and new showcases. There was the "But Dad, they are not just rocks" showcase, which had a cool railway addition, the Rock Rats glass cabochon showcase with little gemstone trees and ants (the insects are so adorable).

A Club favourite of stunning glass plates and bowls was in Showcase 2, and an intricate beading projects showcase offered 2D and 3D beading projects, including a lovely beaded butterfly and beaded cabochons, flowers and bracelets.

The Fossil Record showed ammonites, dinosaur bones and other fossils, while the Fluorite and Amethyst showcases had some interesting specimens. There was also a Raffle showcase with polished Club artwork for prizes. The pink pen and cabochon stone for First Prize were particularly noteworthy.

The Scales of Justice showcase (an oldie but goodie) was there as well as cabochons cut and polished on six inch wheels.

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This stunning beading showcase display had a wide range of 2D and 3D beading projects.A beautiful beaded butterfly.Rock Rats showcase.A classic - the glass plates showcase.Glass plates made by Club members.More fossils.Fluorite showcase.Raffle showcase.The new railway added to the "Dad" showcase.Ants in the Rock Rats showcase.
This stunning beading showcase display had a wide range of 2D and 3D beading projects.
This stunning beading showcase display had a wide range of 2D and 3D beading projects. | Source
A beautiful beaded butterfly.
A beautiful beaded butterfly. | Source
Rock Rats showcase.
Rock Rats showcase. | Source
A classic - the glass plates showcase.
A classic - the glass plates showcase. | Source
Glass plates made by Club members.
Glass plates made by Club members. | Source
More fossils.
More fossils. | Source
Fluorite showcase.
Fluorite showcase. | Source
Raffle showcase.
Raffle showcase. | Source
The new railway added to the "Dad" showcase.
The new railway added to the "Dad" showcase. | Source
Ants in the Rock Rats showcase.
Ants in the Rock Rats showcase. | Source

Faceting Demonstration

Don working on his favourite demonstration - the faceting wheel.
Don working on his favourite demonstration - the faceting wheel. | Source
Pendants and rough by Mariana.
Pendants and rough by Mariana. | Source
Laura Scilio with bargain gemstones, suitable for kids!
Laura Scilio with bargain gemstones, suitable for kids! | Source
President Bill Gordon inspects the bargain rough outside.
President Bill Gordon inspects the bargain rough outside. | Source

Main Traders

Mariana Stokes was back again this year with even more large, ornate pendants, many with unusual gemstones or mixed clusters in them. Mariana's collection of picture agates and jasper were wonderful to behold and her enjoyable collection has earned her the title "Queen of the Pendants"!

Trevor was back from the other side of town, with tumbled stones galore and mineral specimens at good prices and Nola offered her large collection of unusual mineral specimens and jewellery. Vic Sehire was also back, with his array of unusual lapis gemstones, many carved in intricate shapes. He also had some minerals for sale and exciting arm bands with different stones featured.

Gordon James brought a large range of faceted stones and settings in silver and gold. He was a bit shy, but I managed to get a rare photograph of him. For an appointment outside of the Exhibition, phone 03 5367 2865 to peruse his fine jewellery.

Laura Scilio was in charge of the budget rock and gemstone stall, with tumbled stones and glass cabochons at rock bottom prices! There were also two traders outside, one with bargain rough and the other with a tented array of rough and polished. Unfotunately, I didn't get their names and one packed up pretty quickly, so next year guys, give me a chance to catch you!

Mariana Stokes with her HUGE range of gemstone pendants.
Mariana Stokes with her HUGE range of gemstone pendants. | Source
Gordon James with a large range of faceted stones and gold and silver settings.
Gordon James with a large range of faceted stones and gold and silver settings. | Source
Vic with lapis and other hard-to-get-hold-of gemstones.
Vic with lapis and other hard-to-get-hold-of gemstones. | Source
Trevor is as pleased as punch to show off his collection of tumbled stones. Lots of interesting little things in here, proceed with a full wallet only!
Trevor is as pleased as punch to show off his collection of tumbled stones. Lots of interesting little things in here, proceed with a full wallet only! | Source
Nola with a variety of specimens and jewellery.
Nola with a variety of specimens and jewellery. | Source
Wendy's collection of American and Japanese Contemporary Art Glass lampwork - a mix of her own work and that of other glass artists.
Wendy's collection of American and Japanese Contemporary Art Glass lampwork - a mix of her own work and that of other glass artists. | Source
Earrings made by the Rock Rats.
Earrings made by the Rock Rats. | Source

Glass Exhibits & Stalls

Glass making at the Essendon Gem Club has taken off, with a huge array on display and for sale at the Exhibition. Members were excitedly talking about the different cabochons they had made and the interesting coatings and colours of the glass.

Wendy and Fio Bergamin ran a handmade glass lampwork and lapidary stall with beautiful beads, rocks and jewellery for sale. Wendy's showcase, a collection of lampworked beads is shown below. For more information about Bergamin Beads, visit www.bergaminbeads.com

Rose ran a lovely handmade glasswork stall featuring her own creations and those of the Rock Rats. Rose' work included contemporary glass pendants and chainmail (she has been learning how to make chain mail bracelets). She was most informative about the process of glasswork and has talked me into signing up for a class! Rock Rats (a group of lapidary kids within the Club) made earrings and pendants for sale, which were very colourful with cute designs.

Fio manning the Bergamin Beads stall.
Fio manning the Bergamin Beads stall. | Source
Rose' stall with Rock Rat earrings, her own divine glass pendants and chainmail bracelet creations.
Rose' stall with Rock Rat earrings, her own divine glass pendants and chainmail bracelet creations. | Source
Showcase featuring dichroic glass work from Club members.
Showcase featuring dichroic glass work from Club members. | Source
John pans for gold...and other gemstones.
John pans for gold...and other gemstones. | Source
Gemstones and gold in the fossicking pool.
Gemstones and gold in the fossicking pool. | Source

Turbo Pan

Club member John discovered Turbo Pan, which is a type of gold pan that has specially developed ridges to help you pan for gold and gemstones quicker than using a traditional one. John's Turbo Pan display was set up as a children's fossicking activity, which they all enjoyed very much!

If you alternate wash and spin cycles, the spiral riffles to break up the dirt and gravity feeds the heaviest metals into the central trap. Flat riffles viewed in sunlight help you see what you've picked up from the bottom of that river and Turbo Pan is a type of sluice in a pan.

The Pans are a reasonable price and come with quick instructions. Instead of saving for an expensive gold detector, why not try one of these? They're great for children too. Contact John for more information on 0428 250 364.

Advanced Goldpan For Fossicking

Kitchen Delights

A giant big thank you and hugs to Elma and Jenny, who served up some delicious scones, homemade pasties and cups of tea to the crowd and yours truly! If you haven't tasted a Devonshire Tea or homemade pasty at the Exhibition, you haven't truly lived.

Elma and Jenny, your dedication is well and truly appreciated.
Elma and Jenny, your dedication is well and truly appreciated. | Source
No more tough questions for Daryl!
No more tough questions for Daryl! | Source
Everybody's favourite Hard Rock Cafe showcase.
Everybody's favourite Hard Rock Cafe showcase. | Source

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Summary

All said, it was a great turnout on both days of the Show and it was a highly successful show with lots of traders and foot traffic. With the preparations the national Gemboree over just days before the Exhibition began, Bill wished me to thank everyone for their help in putting this amazing Exhibition together.

The Essendon Gem And Lapidary Club is located at:

Cross Keys Reserve
Bridge Street, Essendon
Victoria, Australia

All new members are welcome!

Don't miss the next Essendon Gem & Lapidary Club Exhibtion in 2016!

For more information on exhibition dates, of if you are interested in joining the Essendon Gem And Lapidary Club, please visit the website at http://www.essendongemclub.asn.au/

The Clubrooms were a hive of activity this year!
The Clubrooms were a hive of activity this year! | Source

© 2015 Suzanne Day

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Comments 10 comments

amine-sehibi profile image

amine-sehibi 19 months ago

Wow worth visiting , good job.


Suzanne Day profile image

Suzanne Day 19 months ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia Author

The best part is, it's only $3 for an adult to get in!


billybuc profile image

billybuc 19 months ago from Olympia, WA

Looks like quite an event. Thanks for taking us with you, Suzanne!


FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 19 months ago from USA

At first, I misread "President Bill Gordon" as "President Bill Clinton" and thought, "WOW! I had no idea he was into rocks." Then I settled myself down a little bit and figured it out. (Insert your own joke here.) I enjoyed your hub and sure would have liked to have attended it, Bill Clinton or not.


Suzanne Day profile image

Suzanne Day 19 months ago from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia Author

LOL Flourish - it really would be unusual if he was into rocks!


AliciaC profile image

AliciaC 19 months ago from British Columbia, Canada

This sounds like an interesting event. Thank you for sharing all the photos. Lapidary is an art that I haven't thought much about, but the examples in your photos look lovely.


colorfulone profile image

colorfulone 16 months ago from Minnesota

I have been a rock hound all my life. I could sense the energy for these gems coming right through my computer from your hub. Would be to be there.

Well, I'm going to go hug a rock now!


MarleneB profile image

MarleneB 15 months ago from Northern California, USA

What a fun show. I would have enjoyed myself tremendously. I'm really fascinated by the turbo pan. That's a truly unique item.


Besarien profile image

Besarien 10 months ago

Hi Suzanne Day The rockhound in me is so jealous! Really fun coverage of the event. Your photos are wonderful too!

The turbo pan looks really interesting, not that I do enough fossicking for owning one to pan out. Anyway, I think the real money is in selling the treasure hunters' gear not in buying it. Happy New Year!


hashmat ullah 9 months ago

i am gemologest

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