What is a cameo made of?

Often my customers ask me about the materials for cameos, which material you use for making your cameo jewelry

Most of the people think the white part is applied with glue to a base of another material (often they ask me if the material underneath is coral) ... no that's not how we make our cameo jewelry

Let's say those materials applied on a base are usually fake cameos .. and you don't want them :)

This is the Blog post where I explain you how to distinguish a real cameo from a fake.

let's start a journey on the cameo materials talking about the most used and traditional ones

Materials for the Cameo:

Shell cameos

All shell cameos must be hand crafted because the shell presents an uneven surfaice unsutable for a machine-engraving and in addition to this the shell could easily break with a machine cut. The shells which are mainly utilized for the realization of cameos are:

Cassis Rufa: so called "CORNIOLA", in general height is appx 16 cm.,has an interior reddish layer; the exterior layer, for engraving, is pale-flesh-coloured

The corniola (cornelian cameos) is for sure the most famous cameo, when you think to a traditional cameo ... you think to this!

Cassis Madascarensis: so called "SARDONICA", hight appx 30 cm. ; chestnut brown on bottom and perfectly white on the surface to be engraved.

So this shell is basically black and white! What means this?

MORE CONTRAST IN THE COLORS .... and so more tridimensional effect!

that's why we usually prefer Sardonica (Sardonix shell, or Sardonico cameo) for "scene cameos" or representations of famous paintings

Other shells: Tiger Shell (Cypraea tigris); Red shell (Cornuta cassis); corallina shell (Strombus Gigas) Mother of pearl (Pinctada Margaritifera) Shells from the Cassis Family are particularly adapt for engraving: in fact the two layers of colors, clearly distinct from one another, allow the relief figure to stand out in the best way ... 

You could tell me: "I saw other kinds of cameos necklaces, brooch, ring or earrings, I saw blue cameos with mother and child unicorn or kitty cats represented in the engraved masterpiece "

Those a re probably blue agate cameos: so cameos made on stone and it will be part of a future blog post I'm preparing for you so ...

I don't wanna bore you further .... so let's say ... to be continued

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