I’m sure that you will all be happy to hear that I survived the arsenic and am here to tell you all about it.
I studied the slabs to see which bit I should cut as I wanted to make sure that I got a full spectrum of the colours in my cabochon. I especially didn’t want to leave out that lovely bright orange colour.
There were a few things about this stone that surprised me when I came to cut it. Remember, I am new at this and have been teaching myself through a mixture of books and YouTube videos. And even with this background research you cannot possibly anticipate some of the things that happen – unless you’ve been doing it for a while I should imagine.
I knew that Bumblebee Jasper was a fairly soft stone but the orange bit which was the bit that I tried so hard to keep was like chalk. There were bits of stone coming off all over the place! With every cut I found myself holding my breath and praying that it didn’t break. My finished stone has ended up being slightly smaller than I planned but it worked out well in the end.
I chose a fancy cabochon shape. I drew the shape on to the stone freehand and went for it. One thing I wasn’t quite prepared for was the smell of sulphur that emanated from the stone as I cut it. I have mentioned before that one of the elements was sulphur but I still never clicked that it would come out during the cutting process. The smell embedded itself in to the skin on my hands and no matter how much I washed them I smelled like a live volcano for the rest of the day. It also dyed my apron yellow! It really is an amazing stone and an amazingly messy stone to cut.
I’d be really interested to hear your thoughts on this stone. The general consensus is that you either love it or you hate it. I personally love it! There is so much depth to the stone and so many little threads and veins. Please do take the time to let me know what you think.
So the next step will be to draw up a design and make it. I have been thinking on this for a few days now as I want to make something spectacular so that it does the stone the ultimate amount of justice. I think that I am almost there with it.
Watch this space for the final stage of my blog on Bumblebee Jasper.