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Fair Trade Jewelry and Ethical Fashion

What’s So Amazing About This Ancient Blue Stone?

by | Artisans, Materials

What’s Amazing About This Ancient Blue Stone? – (Read Time – 2 min.)

Natural Blue Stone

Lapis or lapis lazuli is one of the most desired ancient semi-precious stones in history. The word lapis originates from the Latin word for “stone”. Depending on what source you research, some historians believe Lazuli is the name of the original place where lapis was discovered and mined in ancient times.

Cleopatra’s Signature Blue Lapis Eyeshadow

Lapis lazuli is a rare naturally deep-blue rock composed of multiple minerals, including blue lazurite and cloudy white calcite with veins of sparkling golden mica or pyrite, known as “fool’s gold”. As this unique stone gained fame in the ancient art world, its name became synonymous with the color blue.

Ancient Egyptians, including Cleopatra, crushed lapis stone to create their infamous sparkling blue eyeshadow. Even King Tut’s burial mask was decorated with blue lapis stone.

Michelangelo’s Infamous Blue Lapis Paint

During the Middles Ages and Renaissance, artists crushed lapis stone to create rich ultramarine blue paint that many considered to be more valuable than gold. According to thelastjudgement.org, the Virgin Mary’s robe is painted with blue crushed lapis stone paint in Michelangelo’s scene “The Last Judgement” on the ceiling of the infamous Sistine Chapel.

But the most amazing fact about this ancient blue stone is that it’s helping families in areas of extreme poverty thrive!

Suvarna’s Story of Hope

“I was looking for a job and a friend of mine spoke to me about jewelry making. I wasn’t really interested at the time, but somehow, she persuaded me to give it a try before dismissing it. That was the best thing to happen because now I enjoy my work! My favorite part is making sample items. It’s creative & exciting!

I’m more confident now that I’m financially independent. I don’t need to think twice before I buy household necessities like before, nor do I have to worry about how we’re going to pay each month’s rent for our house. Without my work, I’m sure I would have had to rely on others for financial help to make ends meet. I want to excel in my work and hope to become a jewelry designer!”

– Suvarna, Artisan in India


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Kathy Thomas

Kathy Thomas

Kathy Thomas is an inspirational writer with a passion for helping women discover and celebrate their unique gifts and abilities. Kathy is part of the Communications Team at Trades of Hope focusing on Artisan advocacy.