St. Claire Opals was formed in 2009 as a result of my long held interest in Lapidary, in particular the Cutting and Polishing of Opals.
In order for me to learn more about how to work Opals, I first imported them as a finished stone in order that I could see how they were cut and polished. I also bought rough opal from dealers and also directly from the mines, which I now work in my workshop.
Many Cutters of Opal prefer, as I do, to let the stone and run of colour, dictate the form the Opal will take. You can look at a rough piece of Opal and think that you can produce a certain shape; but when you start cutting, the original shape and colour changes, and because of what you find underneath the rough stone, you eventually end up with another shape from that which you at first envisaged.
As you can see at "How to care for Opals" at the Home Page, there are a number of different recognised shapes; Oval is by far the most popular shape, followed by circular or round, teardrop, square, rectangle and triangle are the most common shapes. Because we tend to allow the stone to dictate the shape, we also have what is called Freeform shape.http://www.stclaireopals.com/