Hartley Jewelers Now Offers Captivating – and Rare – Larimar Stone Designs
Hartley Jewelers has been crafting striking one-of-a-kind pieces for nearly 50 years. This family-owned business also carefully selects and stocks unique, memorable jewelry from the best designers in the industry.
So it should come as no surprise that Hartley Jewelers has added something new and exciting to its exclusive collection.
Larimar – an extremely rare blue variety of pectolite – is mined in only one place on earth: a relatively inaccessible, rain forest-protected mountainside in the Dominican Republic, near the city of Barahona, overlooking the Caribbean Sea.
Pectolite appears in many locations across the globe, but nowhere else can stones with Larimar’s unique blue coloration be found.
A Spanish priest originally discovered the stone in 1916, but his request to mine for more was denied. In 1974, American Peace Corp volunteer Norman Rilling and Dominican native Miguel Méndez rediscovered it on a beach, washed down the coastal range by the Bahoruco River. The tumbling action provided natural polishing to the blue Larimar, making it stand out in brilliant contrast to the dark gravel of the streambed.
The two men followed the river upstream to its source and Méndez dubbed the stone “Larimar,” naming it after a combination of his daughter Larissa’s name and the Spanish word for sea, “mar.”
Larimar is an acid silicate hydrate of calcium and sodium. Its distinct blue hue is the result of copper substitution for calcium.
The stone is formed when hot gases push crystallized minerals up through volcanic “tubes,” which today are mined and excavated by digging deeply into the mountain’s old volcanoes.
Approximately 2,000 vertical shafts perforate the mountainside. It’s unclear how much Larimar stone remains in the mines, adding to the stone’s preciousness.
And now pieces incorporating this stunning stone are available at Hartley Jewelers.
“Larimar has a uniqueness that is legendary,” says co-owner and manager Linda Hartley. “When you look at the brilliant blue stones with their white marbling, it’s hard to know if you are looking into the sky or the Caribbean Ocean.”
Hartley Jewelers has the largest collection of Larimar in Washington State. Come in today to see Hartley Jewelers’ selection of designs incorporating this beautiful, rare and totally unique stone. You can also view some of their Larimar collection here.Submitted by Travis Lind Thornton