Cabs, cabochons. I've talked about them before and we had a Jewelry Artisans Community Oldies but Goodies Challenge with that topic a few years ago, too. I'm sure we could do several more with all the cabs that are in the drawers of our members, loose or already added to jewelry.
Cabochons were the earliest way to treat gemstones before people developed the cutting of stones. They usually have a flat back and a polished and rounded front, no facets. Opaque stones are made into cabochons because there's no sparkle which is enhanced by facets. Nevertheless, you will find faceted opaque stones as well, just as you find translucent stones that are not faceted, but made into cabs.
There's a family story about a ring given as a gift. The young recipient was not happy because the ring had an opaque cabochon. I guess most young girls prefer a bit of sparkle or at least did so when I was young, eons ago ;-) It took me very long to acknowledge the beauty of opaque cabs.
People use different techniques to incorporate cabs in their jewelry, bezel or prong settings, wire wrapping and weaving including netting, wire crochet or knit, PMC or polymer clay, even macramé with cord or wire.
Cabs can have all kinds of shapes, too. They come as ovals, rounds, square, rectangular, drops, but also freeform. Lapidary artists have endless fantasy!
The JAC members shared so many beauties that I had a hard time to pick for today's collage, therefore I have a bit more for you today ;-)
2/9/11 Cat's Wire
3/8 Jewelry Art by Dawn
4/6/13 My Bijou Life
5/10 Silver Jewellery Girl