Samui Wining & Dining
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Nature Art Gallery’s treasure trove of hand-made jewellery, precious stones and beautiful accessories isn’t just impressive – it’s affordable, too.

Nature Art Gallery’s treasure trove of hand-made jewellery, precious stones and beautiful accessories isn’t just impressive – it’s affordable, too.From the moment the first human reached down into a river and plucked out a glittering gem, polished by the water flowing over it, there has been a market for precious stones and the jewellery that can be fashioned out of rocks, crystals, silver, gold and all the precious metals that nature has given us. But over the years – centuries – jewellery has come to be associated with a massive price tag. Collecting jewellery seems to be a game only the wealthy can play – unless you opt for cheap, mass-produced pieces. It takes a heroic mind-set to create artefacts that are original – and then to sell them, not at outrageous prices, but at decidedly affordable ones.

          

In the crowded mass-markets of today, good small-production jewellers are as valued as the pieces they make. These are the people who are dedicated to their art, and have taken quite a few risks to bring you jewellery that’s very different and filled with inventive flair. How they manage to do this while keeping their prices down is their own secret – but the rest of us can enjoy wearing what they’ve so painstakingly made for us.

          

Step into any of the four Nature Art Gallery stores, and you’ll instantly recognize that you’re somewhere that’s markedly different to the average jewellers. Focus on any square inch in any of the stores, and you’ll find it spotless. Floors and ceilings are all natural wood and shine with cleanliness. The display cases are devoid of any dust. The entire premises are well-lit, airy and spacious – the ideal place to browse. Nature Art Gallery’s treasure trove of hand-made jewellery, precious stones and beautiful accessories isn’t just impressive – it’s affordable, too.Staff are friendly and all speak English; they can help you if you have any questions.

          

What you’ll find here is an amazing treasure trove. And all of it is a delight to the eye. You’ll see some large displays of precious stones, all of which have beguiling colours. Unlike in some stores you’re free to touch them and pick them up. In fact, you’re encouraged to do just this. Many of the stones have qualities that are said to be beneficial. Just by handling particular stones you’ll sense the differences between them and you’ll probably discover one or two that somehow make an impact on you, giving you a sense of optimism, say, or calm. You can pick up a semi-precious stone or some jewellery for as little as 200 baht. There’s a whole array of prices, so that there’s always something you’ll find that looks beautiful and matches your budget.

          

Each store is also packed with just about every kind of adornment you could wish for. There are all kinds of jewellery, and accessories, too, such as belts and bags. You’ll find both ancient and modern designs – as well as everything in-between. But what unifies all these pieces is the detail and the artistry. And when you look more closely still, you’ll see that everything in the store, like the stones themselves, is made to last; there’s not just quality but durability, too. We’re all too familiar, especially in the modern age, with things that will fall apart. This isn’t the case at Nature Art Gallery; here, the craftsmanship is evident.

          

But what if you’d like something that you can’t see in the store? In-house designers are on hand to help you, and they can design a simple piece for you in as little as a couple of hours or days. (If it’s something more elaborate, it’ll take longer.) You’ll find there’s almost nothing that they cannot do. Most often they’ll use materials that are already in the store, such as the crystals or stones. The rest they complete in their workshop,Nature Art Gallery’s treasure trove of hand-made jewellery, precious stones and beautiful accessories isn’t just impressive – it’s affordable, too. producing some amazing designs in gold, silver and other materials.

          

One of the main precepts that Nature Art Gallery has is that everything is natural. As well as stones, you’ll therefore see leather, shells, coconuts, various woods and even more unexpected items such as elephant hair. The last is used as a braid for gold and stones and can even be inlaid in a ring. As you can imagine, the diversity of pieces is quite remarkable, just using natural materials. Micha and Shai collect these from all over the world, some from very obscure spots, and once they’re in the store, they can be transformed into beautiful wearable objects.

          

A visit to Nature Art Gallery is always a treat. It’s like walking into a palace filled with various treasures – something very unexpected. Every so often on your travels, if they’re extensive enough, that is, you’ll come across places like this, but they’re relatively rare. For bright, creative and hand-made jewellery, Nature Art Gallery is a distinguished departure. It’s equally a place to return to, as there are always new designs and surprises on display.

          

 Dimitri Waring


 


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