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New Stones From The Ottesons - White Buffalo & Variscite

by Skylar Glandon September 20, 2019

White Lightning - Otteson Turquoise

We recently returned from a quick purchasing trip and brought back some pretty neat new items. What I want to briefly update you on now are the new stones that we brought home with us for Gary to use in his jewelry. We met with Kenneth Otteson and his father, who are cousins of the Ottesons that are featured on the new Turquoise Fever TV show. They were set up selling stones that come from some of the same mines that are shown on Turquoise Fever. Naturally, we had to search them out and see what they had to offer. This can be a dangerous rabbit hole because these stones are expensive and can add up quickly. Read on for a description of what we found.

The Ottesons had a variety of different turquoise stones from mines like Royston and Easter Blue. They had a lot of Royston Turquoise as well Boulder Turquoise, which comes from the same mine. We were especially impressed with the Boulder because they had some really beautiful pieces with bright veins of turquoise. It has been difficult for us to get this stone in the last few years so this was nice to see. Not that we haven’t found any Boulder Turquoise, just not pieces that we really like. We are very picky when it comes to the Native American jewelry that we choose for the Stagecoach and a lot of these pieces just aren’t quite the quality that we want. While we were tempted by these Boulder stones and sincerely hope that we see more of the quality that the Ottesons were offering, we elected to not buy any at this time. As I said, we have to be careful about what we purchase because just a few of these high-quality stones can add up to a lot of money. So what did we come home with?

The majority of Turquoise Fever has focused on the different turquoise mines under the Ottesons claim. However, they also own a few Variscite mines. In fact, the most recent episode of Turquoise Fever (as of September 20th) showed the Ottesons discovering the Posideon Variscite claim. On our purchasing trip, they had material from their own Nevada mines (including Posideon Variscite) as well as Australian Variscite. It was the Australian variety that really caught our attention. I will cover more about Variscite in a future article but it is a stone that looks similar to turquoise but typically has a greener tint. It is much less common than turquoise and can have some really beautiful colors. A couple of years ago we got a gorgeous Variscite pendant from David Rosales. He had it on display and it was so beautiful that we couldn’t resist. It did not last long in our store. Likewise, some of the stones we found from the Ottesons were just too gorgeous to pass up. The stones shown on the television show had an intense matrix with a greenish hue. This Australian Variscite is different because it has little to no matrix but has a much deeper and more vivid green color. The coloring is bright but somehow seems softer and a bit more tranquil than turquoise. It is our hope that Variscite jewelry will give us a different look that is both striking and very unusual.

Variscite Stones - Otteson Turquoise

The Ottesons also had a nice selection of White Buffalo stones. While White Buffalo has steadily grown in popularity over the last number of years, it has really exploded since the first episode of Turquoise Fever really focused on it. So much so that our normal source has us on a waiting list for White Buffalo jewelry because they just cannot make the pieces quickly enough to meet demand. While we wait, Gary decided that he would get some stones and make a few more pieces of his own. They had some really nice material and we were able to pick a number of stones that would be perfect for rings or earrings.

As we were looking, Kenneth Otteson showed us a chunk of raw, uncut White Buffalo that they had just discovered. It is a brand new type that has a different look than any they have discovered before. Because of this different look, they elected to give it a new name, “White Lightning”. The name alone gives a good description of how this stone looks. Instead of the typical random black splotches that appear on most White Buffalo, the White Lightning has many white veins running through the black. These veins look just like bright lightning bolts in a night sky. This is a very unique look that we are really excited about. Gary is hoping to have a few pieces made soon since this is something that no one else has at the moment. You won't see this anywhere else for a while so be on the lookout for some of this White Lightning jewelry on our website or in-store.

White Lightning Stones From The Otteson Family

That pretty much covers the exciting things that we brought home from our recent purchasing trip. Gary got a few other stones to fill in some vacancies and for some requests from a few customers. However, the White Buffalo, White Lightning, and Australian Variscite are the really interesting ones. October can be sort of a hectic month here at the Stagecoach and Gary won’t have quite as much time to be making things for a few weeks. Hopefully, we can get him to make a few of these pieces before that rolls around. Of course, he is always making more beautiful pieces of turquoise jewelry as well. We do have a limited supply of these new stones and never know if we will be able to get more in the future. If you are interested in owning a piece of jewelry with either the Variscite or White Lightning, I would advise you to not wait too long once these become available. Sometimes they disappear quickly. Naturally, I will do my best to update you all when he gets any of these new pieces of jewelry made. You can find Gary's handmade jewelry right here, though keep in mind that simply because of time constraints they are typically on display in our store before they are added to the website.

As always, thank you so much for reading!

Skylar Glandon
Skylar Glandon


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