Jade’s cultural allure enters mainstream jewellery

Jade’s cultural allure enters mainstream jewellery

Jade is deeply appreciated in Asian culture as it is seen to bring benefits of health and good fortune. As the world gets smaller and luxury tourism thrives, jade is finding new markets in mainstream branded jewellery.

Jade is a mineral used for ornaments and jewellery. The term jade applies to two minerals – nephrite and jadeite – and comes mainly from China, where it is greatly revered, Russia and the U.S. Jade has a wide range of colours, from emerald green to all kinds of green shades, and even pink, purple, brown, red, orange, white and black.

The main markets for jade are in Hong Kong and Taiwan. Jade jewellery is prominent in the jewellery shops in Hong Kong. Shoppers can also find jade jewellery at the Jade Market in Hong Kong. The market has become very sophisticated and bargains are hard to find. Buyers beware of imitation jade passed off as genuine.

Culturally, jade in China is seen as giving benefits of health and good fortune. Some Chinese believe that jade contains trace elements that will protect the body after wearing it. Jade is thought to have a protective, lucky-charm energy.

London-based Chinese jewellery designer Isabella Liu says: “Jade is a cultural symbol for the Chinese — just as the Japanese love pearls.”

A Chinese jade jewellery owner said: “I received jade jewellery from my parents, as gifts bringing me peace, safety and good luck.

“The Chinese love jade for its purity, beauty, preciousness, and majesty.”

The Panthere De Cartier Earrings features the iconic Cartier panther, diamond-paved, set with black jade.

As Asian luxury shoppers increasingly roam the world, jade jewellery is becoming more widely available and is incorporated into collections of the leading global jewellery brands, such as Cartier. Digital retail from the brands also provides a myriad of shopping opportunities for jade jewellery.

The Panthere De Cartier Necklace features the iconic Cartier panther, diamond-paved, set with black jade.
David Brough is IJL’s Precious Metals and Gems Editor. David is Co-Founder and Editor of digital magazine Jewellery Outlook and writes monthly precious metals and gemstones Market News for Retail Jeweller magazine. He was a Reuters correspondent and editor for more than 30 years, including 16 years as a foreign correspondent, and covered commodity markets extensively. David won the United Nations A.H. Boerma Award in 2002-3 for his reporting on hunger issues. He graduated from St. Andrews University in Scotland with a MA (Hons) in Economics and French, and has a Certificate in Financial Markets from the Securities Institute of Australia. He speaks fluent French, Spanish, Portuguese and Italian.

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