Gems of the Hill Country

830-367-3368

Hours/Contact

Store Hours

 

Wednesday - 11:00 - 5:00

Thursday  11:00 - 5:00

Friday 11:00 - 5:00

Saturday 11:00 - 5:00

Sunday - Closed

Monday - Closed

Tuesday - Closed

 

Phone Numbers

Store Main    830-367-3368

 

Email Addresses

Diane Gemologist@texas-topaz.com

Brad   Brad@texas-topaz.com
Sales  Sales@texas-topaz.com

 

Mailing Address click on Mailing address 

P.O. Box 363  

200 Hwy 39

Ingram, Texas 78025

 

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Frequently Asked Questions    

 

Where is Gems of the Hill Country located?

Why do your hours change?

Where does your topaz come from?

Can I hunt for topaz myself?

What colors is Texas topaz found in?

What is the Lone Star cut?

Are there other star cuts available?

Why is my topaz cloudy and I can’t see the star?

OK, so what do I do about it?  

How should I wear my jewelry?

How do I store my jewelry?

Will you sell just the gem, and I can have my regular jeweler set it?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where is Gems of the Hill Country located?

We are located at 200 Hwy 39 in Ingram, Texas.  We are just west of T.J. Moore Hardware store, just past the historic murals, on the north side of the road.  If you found the Old Ingram Loop, we are just east of that.

 

Why do your hours change?

Our hours vary, depending on the time of year, and how much work is backed up, so check the front page of the website, or call, for hours we are open.

 

Where does your topaz come from?

Our topaz is of native Texas origin.  Mason County is the only county in Texas where our state gem, topaz, can be found.  It is usually rounded and riverworn, and found in creeks in a couple parts of the county.  We do carry irradiated topaz from other locations, but it is always kept separate from the Texas topaz.

 

Can I hunt for topaz myself?

There are a couple of ranches that allow rock hounding at this time.  There is also a guide that can take you out.  More information is under “Rockhounding” on this site.

 

What colors is Texas topaz found in?

The vast majority of our topaz is clear.  Yes, I know the legislation designating topaz as the state gem says blue topaz, but that color is rare as a natural color.  The blue in natural blue topaz is caused by irradiation as the topaz was forming millions of years ago.  Topaz irradiated by man can achieve darker blues.  If a darker blue is important to you, then stay away from Texas topaz, and go for a gem radiated by man.

 

What is the Lone Star cut?

The Lone Star cut was designated the Texas official state cut in 1979.  The star is faceted on the bottom of the gem.  This is a deep cut, and requires special mountings.  It is kinda deep for rings, and not recommended for stud earrings, as the depth makes the gem droop.  However, it is great for leverback earrings and pendants.

 

Are there other star cuts available?

You betcha.  We also offer the round star brilliant cut, that is a classic round cut with a star added to the bottom of the gem.  Another popular cut is a square star cut.  We can cut a variety of gem cuts, both with and without stars.  Just ask.

 

Why is my topaz cloudy and I can’t see the star?

It’s dirty.  Any light gems will show grease and dirt rather quickly.  And sometimes one dip in the dishwater is all it takes.

 

OK, so what do I do about it? 

Keep a clean, old soft tooth brush by the sink at home.  Use warm water with a few drops of dishwashing liquid and the brush to gently clean the dirt and grease from the gem.  Rinse in warm water.  You may add some vinegar or ammonia to help remove any remaining oil.

 

How should I wear my jewelry?

Jewelry is like a car.  If you choose to drive your truck on dirt roads and never get it serviced, it gonna be a shorter life for that truck.  If you get regular maintenance on your vehicle, and stay off the beach, it will live a long time.  So it is with jewelry.  For long life, take your jewelry off when doing rough work or working with chemicals.  We recommend you not sleep in your jewelry.  The sheets rub against the metal, and wear it down.

 

Topaz is a hard gem, but it has a cleavage plane.  Think of the grain in wood, and how the wood can be split easier along the grain.  Topaz can be damaged if hit on that plane.  Even diamonds can be damaged, and it’s also being hit on the cleavage plane.   The nicer you are to your jewelry, the longer it lasts, no matter what metals or gems involved.

 

How do I store my jewelry?

Gems and jewelry can damage each other when store together without protection.  Even diamonds can be damaged this way.  Store your jewelry protected from each other.  There are a variety of ways to accomplish this.  You may use the separations provided in many jewelry boxes.  I prefer see through plastic boxes made for fishing lures.  They can be purchased with various size bins, and you can see them from the outside.

 

Will you sell just the gem, and I can have my regular jeweler set it?

No problem.