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*CABOCHON Suites or Sets
Apache Gold Cabochons
Arizona Pietersite Cabochons
Australian Moss Agate
Azurite Shattuckite
Azurite-Malachite Cabochons
Blue Chalcedony Cabochons
Blue Lace Agate Cabochons
Brazilian Piranha Agate
Bruneau Jasper Cabochons
Bubble Blue Chalcedony
Cacoxenite Amethyst
Candy Opal Cabochons
Carrasite Jasper Cabochons
Cave Creek Jasper Cabochons
Cherry Creek Jasper
Chevron Amethyst Cabochons
Chinese Writing Rock
Cobalto Calcite (Pink Drusy)
Copper Rose Cabochons
Coquina Jasper Cabochons
Cotham Marble Cabochons
Covellite Cabochons (fat)
Covellite Cabochons (thin)
Coyamito Agate Cabochons
Crazy Lace Agate Cabochons
Deschutes Jasper Cabochons
Dinosaur Bone Cabochons
Drusy Agate Cabochons (Druse)
Drusy Chrysocolla Cabochons
Flame Agate Cabochons
Fluorite Cabochons
Fossil Coral Cabochons
Graveyard Point Agate
Howlite Cabochons
K2 Cabochons
Kabamba Jasper Cabochons
Kyanite Cabochons
Labradorite Cabochons
Laguna Agate Cabochons
Magnetite & Pyrite
Mahogany Obsidian
Maw Sit Sit Jade Cabochons
Medicine Bow Agate
Mexican Fire Opal
Mohawkite Cabochons
Montana Agate Cabochons
Mookaite Jasper Cabochons
Morgan Hill Poppy Jasper
Morrisonite Jasper Cabochons
Native Copper Cabochons
Nipomo Agate Cabochons
Noreena Jasper Cabochons
Ocean Jasper Cabochons
Other Specialty Cabochons
Owyhee Jasper Cabochons
Petrified Palm Wood (Indonesia)
Petrified Palm Wood (Louisiana)
Petrified Sycamore Wood
Polish Flint Cabochons
Prehnite Cabochons
Psilomelane Cabochons
Rainbow Obsidian Hearts
Red Agate Pseudomorph
Rhodochrosite (Gemmy)
Rhodochrosite Cabochons
Rhodonite Cabochons
Ricolite Cabochons
Royal Imperial Jasper
Rutilated Quartz Cabochons
Sagenitic Agate Cabochons
Serpentine Cabochons
Sonora Sunset Cabochons (Chrysocolla Cuprite)
Spectrolite Cabochons
Spiderweb Obsidian
Stinking Water Plume
Tiffany Stone Cabochons
Tigereye Cabochons
Turquoise Cabochons
Tuxedo Agate Cabochons
Uvarovite Garnet Cabochons
Wave Dolomite Cabochons
Web Serpentine Cabochons
Willow Creek Jasper

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What are cabochons?


The word "cabochon" comes from the French word caboche meaning nail, and cabochons are named that because of their rounded shape. A "cabochon" (pronounced kab-e-shawn and often shortened to cab) is described as a gemstone that is not faceted, but is cut into a convex and usually highly polished shape. The bottom of a cbochon is usually flat, but may be slightly domed or may actually be concave to bring light to a stone. In general, gemstones that are transparent (light passes through) are faceted, gemstones that are translucent (some light passes through) or opaque (no light passes through) are usually cut into cabochons. Also softer stones are usually cut into cabochons, as they scratch easier. Some gemstone materials must be cut a specific way, such as chatoyant Tigereye, or star Rubies to bring out their beauty. Fire Agate cabochons usually have a contoured surface to best bring out the rainbow fire without cutting through it.

"Gemstone" is not a scientific word, but rather a collective name for all ornamental stones. The shape of a cabochon may be symmetrical-a mirrored image on both sides. Or they can be freeform-having no defined shape. Cabochons can be standard shapes-circles, ovals, triangles, rectangles or squares. Or they can be one of the more exotic shapes-bullets, tongues, arches, etc. Cabochons can be calibrated, a term used usually for rounds or ovals that have a standard size. Often times inexpensive or more common stone materials are mass-produced into symmetrical or standard shapes or sizes, for instance the well known 30 mm by 40 mm oval cabochon. Cabochons are usually measured in millimeters. These are great for beginner jewelers, as there are many pre-made standard settings for sale. Standard cabochons are also good for mass producers of jewelry as each piece of jewelry doesn't have to be custom made to fit the cabochon.

Custom jewelers or wire wrappers demand more fancy or designer cabochons. Some cabochons are cut into really exotic shapes like clouds, leaves, hearts, etc. There are even fantasy cuts, or freeform sculpted cuts. Freeforms are usually done to accommodate a rare type of material, such as a drusy material. If the rough stone material is expensive or rare the cutter will want to preserve as much of the material as possible.

At BarlowsGems we specilize in rare and unique cabochons. We travel the world looking for striking patterns and bright colors. We personally orientate each cabochon to get the best possible pattern. Each cabochon is hand cut and polished. Please check out the cabochons we have by exploring our store. You can click on a material type to the left or you can search for specific shapes or colors by entering your choices in the search box. Make sure to search for the singular (triangle instead of triangles) for your most complete selection!

See my page on Cutting Custom Cabochons for more information!

Cutting Custom Cabochons | Chalcedony: Agates and Jaspers  | Metaphysical Properties
Legends and Lore  | History of Mining  | History of Stone Cutting  | Site Map | 
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