When you're welcomed into Gordons Gold Jewellers, you will soon share a conversation with co-owner Duane Bock regarding one of his many passions – from cooking to scuba diving to jewellery creation. As an award-winning jewellery designer, and creative in The Goldsmith Shop, Duane is a driving force with his masterly-crafted items of jewellery. Among his favourite gemstones are diamond, alexandrite, and Paraiba tourmaline. He also has a passion for a family of gemstones called Corundum, which include the sapphire and ruby. Corundum varietals are sourced in many colours. While the red variety of corundum is ruby, sapphire comes in almost every colour.
Corundum is mined in many places around the globe with some varieties mined only in one or two regions like the rare Padparadscha Sapphire. Duane is a great admirer of this often-reddish orange sapphire, which up until more recently was mined exclusively in Sri Lanka. Sapphire and ruby vary in value and as with all gemstones - colour is paramount! The quality of cut and clarity also play important roles in establishing the value of corundum as well as carat weight and market demand. Exquisite specimens of corundum are available in a range to suit many tastes and budgets.
In light of valuation and full disclosure, the industry offers a number of industry accepted treatments to help enhance a stone’s appearance; although an untreated sapphire is still preferred. With its plethora of colours, natural sapphire is highly prized and sought after. Duane advises that lab-created sapphires as well as synthetics which are sold in some markets should not be seen as viable options when one desires a rare and precious gem.
Corundum is an exciting accent or feature in jewellery due to its hardness. While diamonds are at the top of the list on the Mohs hardness scale, being rated at 10, corundum is rated at 9 on the scale. What hardness means to the wearer is that corundum will stand up to daily wear and endure when compared to softer gemstones.
With the demand and interest in coloured gemstones on the rise, Duane has recently introduced a new brand of natural sapphires at Gordons Gold called Sorbet Sapphire™. Offering only untreated sapphires, each sapphire is considered a piece of art to be treasured and admired. Once a sapphire by Sorbet Sapphire™ is sold, it is gone forever! I invite you to come by our showroom and view these unique wonders for yourself.
Gem collectors and connoisseurs compete for Duane’s time as our "Gem Visits" are sessions filled with passion and knowledge. With budding interest, children are also eager to get in on the stone collecting game. That is why each visit usually entails a mound of uncut corundum at which time Duane allows children to hand select their very own uncut stone to take home to begin their own gemstone collection.
When Duane is not busy immersed in his gem visits, you will find him working on another of his passions; creating unique one of a kind jewellery pieces for his clients. Most creations are completed working alongside the client through various stages of the design process. By experiencing these steps, the client enjoys the journey almost as much as the final creation.
Duane’s creativity process first begins by designing the jewellery in his mind, with the individuality of his client as inspiration. He then sketches his design onto paper and hand carves wax models the old-fashioned way. Once the creation is cast into precious metal, using the wax investment technique, Duane mounts gemstones in his one-of-a-kind designs.
Duane has been the recipient of multiple Canadian national design awards. As such, many clients commission him to “create something remarkable” and are always delighted when they pick up their unique piece of jewellery.
When Duane has some time away from the store, he is an adventurous traveller and an amazing foodie – two passions that go well together in inspiring his amazing creations in the kitchen. Just as Duane has a process for creating unique jewellery pieces, he is just as creative in his cooking creations. He starts with an extensive grocery list and can often be found by his friends in the aisles of the grocery store choosing those special ingredients for his dishes. Duane has an amazing ability to recreate a recipe he has enjoyed on his travels, all without following a recipe.
This months we're featuring a Lamb Sirloin with Hazelnut Hollandaise Sauce, from our table to yours we hope you enjoy yet another amazing creation by Duane!